Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Oilers Deserve Better

from Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun,

Only seven teams ended up in eighth place and knocked off the first-place teams in Stanley Cup playoffs and none of them managed to get past the second round of the playoffs. So the Oilers weren't a real good bet in the beginning. After the San Jose Sharks won their sixth straight game of the post-season and 14th of their last 16 by the same 2-1 scores as the first, the Oilers head home for Game 3 knowing they'll have to win four of five to go to the final four. There's no suggestion here the Sharks weren't full value for both wins, the first more than the second, but still, both wins. Sensational action It's just that there have been some serious stretches of some sensational Stanley Cup playoff action. And it would be a shame to have this all over by the weekend.

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Rookies Fit Right In

from the OC Register,

Stanley Cup playoff lore is filled with stories of grizzled veterans fighting through age, pain and fatigue while leading their teams to springtime glory. A fresh-faced group of Mighty Ducks is writing a different kind of chapter. "I think the rest of the league focuses on our record since the Olympics," General Manager Brian Burke said Monday while watching the Ducks practice at Pepsi Center. We've played well since Dec. 1. Since that time, I've seen a steady evolution with the kids. Am I surprised? No. Am I proud of them? Yes." Do the young players have any comprehension of what they're doing? "I think so," Getzlaf said. "I mean - we're playing. We're playing in the playoffs. This is the time you need guys to step up. You can create a pretty good name for yourself as a young guy if you can perform in the playoffs."
read on

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Ottawa In Trouble

from Bob McKenzie of TSN,

The Ottawa Senators are down 2-0 in their Eastern Conference Semifinal Series against the Buffalo Sabres after two games on home ice, and they got in that hole by continuing to make the same mistakes. Game 2 on Monday night was a bizarre contest in many ways. You knew the Senators were going to come out firing on all cylinders after losing Game 1, and they did. But they should have got a big lift from the devastating hit Peter Schaefer made on Tim Connolly, and instead, they started making mistakes.
continued from the Globe and Mail,
Now the Senators are in a dark place as far as this best-of-seven National Hockey League series is concerned, trailing 2-0 with the next two games in Buffalo tomorrow and Thursday. "The other night, I said we gave them a number of their goals," Senators head coach Bryan Murray said. "I don't know whether it was four or five or what it was, and the same thing tonight. We gave them their two goals."

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Looking For A Goalie

from Spector at Fox Sports,

A lack of depth in quality goaltenders in this summer's unrestricted free-agent market is generating rumors of teams seeking goaltending upgrades via trades rather than free agency. Here's a list of those who could be available this summer. Nikolai Khabibulin, Chicago Blackhawks: Rumors have flown for months that the Blackhawks would like to dump Khabibulin and the $20 million remaining on his contract, but that contract probably works against any plans by the team to move him.
read on for many more...

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Yzerman Has Squeezed Enough From Detroit

from Stan Fischler and the Hockey Journal,

*Detroit captain STEVE YZERMAN squeezed an extra year – as well as millions – out of the Red Wings. And more power to him. But Detroit’s near-eternal captain must realize that enough IS enough. Yzerman should graciously call it a career while the calling still is good. Nor would it hurt the Wings if he persuaded teammate Chris Chelios to exit Stage Right along with him. After all, there IS such a thing as wearing out one’s welcome.
much more from the Maven...

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We Have All Been There

We all know what this guy is going through. Over the years, I have probably missed 20 social events due to a playoff game... from the Niagara Gazette,

High school students debate the importance of prom Our Space HE SAID: I’m having a conflict of interest at the moment. The Stanley Cup Finals end in June, so what happens if there is a game on the night of prom? Surely the NHL will not take into consideration the date of Niagara Falls High School’s prom celebration when making its schedule.... SHE SAID: Every girl feels like Cinderella on her prom night. From perfect hair and makeup to perfect attire, girls have an enchanted evening to look forward to.

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Zidlicky Signs With Nashville

via the Nashville Predators,

Nashville Predators Executive Vice President/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed defenseman Marek Zidlicky to a four-year contract.
added May 9th, via the Tennessean, Contract is four-year, $13.4 million.

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Koivu Has Surgery

from the CP via the Globe and Mail,

Montreal Canadiens captain Saku Koivu is recovering after undergoing successful eye surgery over the weekend. In a brief statement Monday, the team said doctors repaired a tear in the retina of Koivu's left eye. The surgery was performed by team ophthalmologist John Little and retina specialist Mila Oh at Montreal's Royal Victoria Hospital. Koivu's recovery is expected to last several weeks.

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Explain The Game To Me

from the Lebanon Daily News,

I have just shelled out $200 for three hockey tickets. This is because: (a) No. 1 son, the hockey fanatic, is visiting for a few days. (b) It’s an NHL playoff game. (c) I am nuts. Specifically the pricey ducats (nosebleed section) are for Saturday afternoon’s face off between the New Jersey Devils and Carolina Hurricanes. It is our home game two in round two of the playoffs, or more precisely the fourth game of the Eastern Conference semifinals. The first two games are someplace in Carolina, where of course they have no business playing hockey, nor anywhere else south of the Mason-Dixon Line.

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Shark Hug From Fans

from Darren Eliot of Sports Illustrated,

The San Jose Sharks' story this season is compelling on so many levels that it's tough to know where to begin. With the top four seeds falling in the first round in the Western Conference, the Sharks have home ice in this round against the Edmonton Oilers and the conference final should they advance. That is no small advantage. The patrons of the Shark tank engage in game proceedings in as loud a fashion as any in the entire league. Maybe that is the starting point in all of this. The Sharks are this community's team. When they joined the league in the fall of 1991, some wondered about the viability of a franchise set in Northern California. But even through the lean early years, the fans embraced the Sharks.

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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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