Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

OLN Not Delivering

from Sports Media Watch,

Along with most everybody else, we’ve been not watching the NHL season for about two months now, so it seems like a good time to check in with our boys over on the ice. Therefore: a time-out today from the regular Digest rounds while we ask ourselves: if a sports network happens with nobody around to watch it, does it make a sound? Can it take on a corporate empire? Can we make a Zamboni joke? Just remember: if you thought Codebreakers got bad ratings (and believe me, it did), you haven’t seen anything yet.
read on

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Avs Exposed

from the Longmont Daily Times,

The Colorado Avalanche saw the ugly truth. The years of domination, the years when games could be won on pure skill, have gone. The new NHL has exposed the Avs, and it was no more evident than in the Ottawa Senators’ 6-2 rout Monday night in a game that was tied 2-2 after two periods.
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Big And Agile

from Karl Samuelson of NHL.com,

Size, strength and agility might help explain why Chara is at or near the top of the NHL in hits every season. But genetics might also play a part. The son of a former Olympic wrestler has no equal when it comes to impact strength. "Chara is dominant out there," says Detroit Red Wings forward Kirk Maltby. "It is almost unfair from another player's standpoint. He utilizes his size and strength and he is so agile for such a big man."
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Alternatives For The Penguins

from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,

Conceding that Pittsburgh is in danger of losing the Penguins, Allegheny County Chief Executive Dan Onorato said yesterday he and Pittsburgh Mayor-elect Bob O'Connor are trying to "find a way" to fund a replacement for the Mellon Arena and secure the team's future. Mr. Onorato said he and Mr. O'Connor are considering a number of financing options, including private investment, state capital funding, naming rights sales and slot machine revenues.
continued It was also nice to hear both Mike Emrick and John Davidson talk about this situation on the OLN broadcast last night. They both stated the politicians had a gentleman's agreement with the Penguins to build a new arena in 2003 but have not followed through on it.

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Teams Designed By Buccigross

John Buccigross of ESPN picks his USA and Canadian Olympic Team-

USA Forwards Mike Modano-Brian Gionta-Chris Drury Craig Conroy-Brian Rolston-Dustin Brown Doug Weight-Keith Tkachuk-Mike Knuble Scott Gomez-Erik Cole-Jason Blake Canada Forwards Joe Thornton-Jarome Iginla-Simon Gagne Vincent Lecavalier-Brad Richards-Martin St. Louis Joe Sakic-Dany Heatley-Patrick Marleau Sidney Crosby-Paul Kariya-Ryan Smyth
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Naslund Hurting- Cooke Returns

from the Vancouver Sun,

Winger Matt Cooke's expected return tonight to the Vancouver Canucks' lineup will not be enough to fill a gaping hole at forward if captain Markus Naslund is unable or forbidden to play. Naslund, who exacerbated a groin injury by playing Friday against the Ottawa Senators, did not practise Monday and Canuck coach Marc Crawford confirmed the Canucks' top scorer may require a few days off.
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Doan Still In The Mix

from the Arizona Republic,

Many experts considered Doan, who scored the World Cup-clinching goal for Canada in 2004, a lock to make the Olympic team before the NHL season started. But Doan has struggled offensively, and the emergence of younger players Sidney Crosby, Jason Spezza and Eric Staal could end up costing Doan a trip to Turin, Italy. When asked whether he felt he deserved to be on the team, Doan, who has six goals and 14 assists in 30 games this season, politely said: "I have no say whether I deserve it or not." Doan added that he doesn't feel any pressure to play extremely well in these final days as Gretzky and other Team Canada officials put their finishing touches on the roster.
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If The Pens Move

from the Toronto Star,

Could the "Return of the Winnipeg Jets Campaign" finally bear fruit? Would the Penguins move from one Steeltown to another? Does the NHL adore Quebec City? And what about new possibilities on the NHL map, places like Houston, Las Vegas and Kansas City? The largest city in the U.S. that doesn't have an NHL team is Houston, the country's fourth biggest. Also big, puck-less and potentially profitable are San Francisco, Seattle, Las Vegas and Kansas City. Ryder calls relocating the Penguins to an American city Plan A. Plan B, he said, would be deciding the NHL is in fact a regional sport and thereby moving the franchise to Canada. The six largest Canadian cities already have teams, but Winnipeg, Quebec City, and Hamilton — all about the same size — and much smaller Halifax could all be in the mix.
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Moore Brother Meets Bertuzzi

from the NY Times,

As a 25-year-old rookie playing a supporting role, forward Dominic Moore has quietly been a valuable contributor to the Rangers' surprising rise to the top of the N.H.L. standings this season. For at least one night, however, Moore will reluctantly be thrust into the spotlight. The Rangers play host to the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday at Madison Square Garden in a matchup of two of the league's better teams. The Rangers (20-8-4) lead the Atlantic Division, and the Canucks (18-9-2) are only 2 points behind first-place Calgary in the Northwest Division. It is the teams' only meeting this season. But the main subplot is the first meeting between Moore and Vancouver right wing Todd Bertuzzi.
continued

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Bruins Try To Focus On Positive

from the Boston Globe,

Coach Mike Sullivan took a different tack yesterday, canceling the Bruins' on-ice workout at the Ristuccia Center and holding an off-ice session and team meeting instead. The idea was to accentuate the positive and purge the negative aura that has enveloped the club more and more since the losses started mounting.
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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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