Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Alfredsson Wants To Improve

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

Daniel Alfredsson has bad news for opponents in the Eastern Conference. He thinks he can be better. "I'm not quite happy with where everything is at right now," said Alfredsson yesterday. "I'm still working on a few things and I'm not completely happy with where my shot is at." Going into tonight's game against the Islanders, the Senators captain is having a standout season with 12 goals and 23 points in 12 games. If this continues, he could break the 50-goal mark.

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Bolts Need A Jolt

from the Toronto Star,

With the skill, speed and youth the Tampa Bay Lightning possess, the new NHL should be even more suited to them than the one over which they reigned as champions two years ago. But that hasn't been the case as the Lightning have stumbled a little out of the starting blocks with a 7-5-2 record. They're also carrying back-to-back losses into tonight's game against the Leafs, who have also been something less than inspiring this season. At this point in 2003-04, the Lightning were off to a torrid pace. They won their first six games, were undefeated in their first eight and after 14 games were 9-2-3. But Lightning coach John Tortorella, who was the architect of the team's rise from laughingstock to champion, notices things are much different this time. "We're going through a process of being the hunted," Tortorella said. "We've never been the hunted before. Let's face it, where we were before we were getting the snot kicked out of us. We're going through the process of learning how to compete in a whole different world."

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NHL Growing

from the Montreal Gazette,

The elite professional is of unprecedented size in 2005-06, based on the 710 active players and injured reserve on first-game rosters of the NHL's 30 clubs. This average player has grown two inches, added 20.4 pounds and aged two years since 1972-73, the first year the league tracked him, when he was 5-foot-11, 184.5 pounds and 26.4 years. He is 3/10ths of a pound heavier and one-half year older than in 2003-04, and is 6-foot-1 for the 11th consecutive season.

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All About Alex

from the Globe and Mail,

"I miss my home, my city and my country," Ovechkin said. "But I want to be here because the NHL is the league I have always wanted to play in." Crosby has better players around him right now while the Capitals don't have a lot of depth, and if the losses pile up, they could take a toll on Ovechkin, despite the fact "it's my job to make this team get better." About the only area, Willsie said, where Ovechkin needs improvement is in his fashion sense. The youngster took quite a ribbing one day when he walked in wearing red pants, red shoes and a red hat. "Nobody understands my unique style," he said. "I like to be different."

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Reviews After One Month

from the National Post,

I THOUGHT YOU WERE DEAD ... Paul Kariya, Peter Forsberg, the New York Rangers, the Detroit Red Wings, Teemu Selanne, Dominik Hasek, Oleg Tverdovsky. HEY, DIDN'T YOU USED TO BE ... Martin Brodeur, the St. Louis Blues, Marty Turco, Jose Theodore, Derek Morris, Ty Conklin. ROOKIE RACE While much ink has been spilled over Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin as they battle for the Calder Trophy, Pavel Vorobiev has slid into the mix. Heading into last night, the Chicago winger has six goals and was second in rookie points with 15.

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DVR Alert- Waking Up Wally

from the Globe and Mail,

In a scene from the new CBC movie Waking Up Wally, Walter Gretzky excuses himself from the living room, where family and friends are watching Wayne play for the Los Angeles Kings on Hockey Night in Canada. "It's boring," a somewhat addled Walter explains to wife Phyllis. Well, it was 1993 in the old National Hockey League, right? All that hooking and holding. Waking Up Wally, which will air on Sunday at 8 p.m., gets a thumbs-up from this reviewer. Based on the book Walter Gretzky: On Family, Hockey and Healing, it follows the world's best-known hockey dad as he gradually recovers from brain damage. At its essence, it's the story of a family in small-town Canada working together to overcome a crisis.

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Caps Get Restraining Order Against Semin

from the AP via Sportsnet,

The Capitals on Friday were granted a temporary restraining order against holdout Alexander Semin, preventing the Russian forward's representatives from negotiating contracts with any team other than Washington. "It's the first step," Capitals general manager George McPhee said. "Essentially, the court has agreed with the Capitals that what's taking place isn't proper." NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said the ruling was significant because it also allows the Capitals to serve papers on Semin through his agent.

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Flyers Want Capital Player Suspended

from the Courier-Post,

While Flyers defenseman Eric Desjardins spent most of Friday morning sleeping off the effects of a concussion sustained the night before, his coach and teammates lobbied for the NHL to suspend Washington Capitals forward Chris Clark. "That was an elbow and he should get suspended for that," Flyers center Peter Forsberg said. "If it's a deliberate blow to the head, he should get suspended. We'll see if he gets any games or not. It's hard to accidentally hit someone with an elbow."

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Nash Could Be Out Six Weeks

Earlier today, reports were Rick Nash was day-to-day with a knee injury. Now he may be sidelined for six weeks. from TSN,

Nash was placed on injured reserve with a knee injury will not play Friday against the Vancouver Canucks. A Blue Jackets spokesperson, however, told TSN that the preliminary diagnosis was a knee sprain that could sideline their star player for four to six weeks. The team won't know the full extent of the damage done to his left knee until he has an MRI on Saturday when the Blue Jackets return to Columbus.

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Bettman Loves Canada

from the CP via TSN,

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, proclaiming the new hockey season a ''remarkable'' story after the bitter year-long lockout, said Friday a more fluid, action-packed game is paying off. Five weeks in, attendance is strong in most markets with five per cent more fans and television ratings are up, especially in Canada. Still, there are trouble spots, including low ratings for hockey on the Outdoor Life Network in the United States. The Washington Capitals have had dismal crowds. The Buffalo Sabres and the New Jersey Devils have had a lot of empty seats.

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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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