Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Gagne For Selke

from the Delco Times,

"The award reads ‘defensive player’ but the people who win are really two-way players," Hitchcock said. "They’re players that can kill penalties, play against the other team’s top players and they’re great in both ends of the rink. Those are the kind of players that win the award, and for me that’s Simon Gagne. "Yeah, he’s got 45 goals, but he’s a great penalty killer, he plays against the other team’s best players and if I have a player that needs to get shut down, he does that." It wouldn’t be unprecedented for a player with Gagne’s gaudy offensive statistics to win the award.
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Hartnell Not Happy With Benching

from the Tennessean,

Hartnell had played in the first 79 games of the season and was none too pleased about missing out on a chance to play in every contest. He's fourth on the Predators with 24 goals, including a franchise record seven game-winning scores. "It's a little disappointing to work my butt off and then to sit out with three games left in a perfect season," Hartnell said. "That's a little unclassy, but if they feel like they need to do that to help them win, great." Hartnell had posted just one point (an assist) in his last six contests, but Trotz said he was more concerned about the rest of Hartnell's game. "He's a talented player who can take the puck to the net and has a good skill game," Trotz said. "But he's got to play a better two-way game. He's got to be more complete."
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This Week The NHL On NBC

SATURDAY, APRIL 15 2 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. NHL ON NBC (*New York Rangers @ Philadelphia/Minnesota @ Dallas/Boston @ Atlanta) (live) Commentators: Mike Emrick, John Davidson, Pierre McGuire (NYR @ Philadelphia); Chris Cuthbert, Peter McNab, Cammi Granato (Minnesota @ Dallas); Dave Strader, Brian Hayward, Joe Micheletti (Boston @ Atlanta) * Lead game (NYR @ Philadelphia) available in High Definition

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Enjoy The Weekend

Before many of you run off for the Easter Weekend, I want to wish everyone a peaceful and safe Easter. It is the times we spend with family and friends that should be remembered and cherished. Updates will continue the next three days, but Sunday will be a "very limited" posting day. image

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Next Stop For Arnason

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

The next stop for Tyler Arnason could be the press box. Senators coach Bryan Murray didn't mince words after last night's 5-4 overtime loss to the Florida Panthers when he was asked about the lack of playing time the club's centre had in the third period. "He didn't play at all," said Murray. Why? "I just benched him," said Murray.
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Tough Team To Figure Out

from the Philadelphia Inquirer,

Ken Hitchcock promised that the Flyers would approach last night's game against the New Jersey Devils like a must-win playoff game. "It's going to be treated," Hitchcock said, "like a sudden-death one." It wasn't exactly sudden death - more the slow, meticulous type that occurs when a team still trying to establish its identity goes against one that is peaking just in time for the playoffs.... "Everything was said before the game, and everything was said between the periods, and nothing really happened," Derian Hatcher said. "Everyone has to take it upon themselves. There's three games left." "We know we have the guys," Eric Desjardins said. "We have good players, good veterans, good young guys that play really well. We're pretty confident in what we have. In the playoffs, you never know. We go in and feel decent, feel better about our game, anything can happen. That's what I believe in. You never know."
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Sabres See Black

from the Buffalo News,

The Buffalo Sabres expect to turn a profit of more than $1.5 million this season, even if they make an early exit from the playoffs, and the figure could top $5 million if they go all the way to the Stanley Cup finals. Team officials updated their profit projections, while announcing that their season-ticket prices are remaining roughly the same for next season.... As the regular season ends, the Sabres turned a profit of about $600,000, slightly below earlier projections, because of the many injuries that required minor-league players to be promoted at major-league salaries. Under the league's complicated new Collective Bargaining Agreement, the Sabres expect to make a net profit of $500,000 to $600,000 for each home playoff game. They're assured of at least two home games, which would put the total profit over $1.5 million.
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He Can One-Time Anything

from the Calgary Sun,

He needs one more goal to match his age but Dion Phaneuf should be happy with 20. After all, it's not often a defenceman scores that many -- especially in his freshman year. Only two NHLers -- Brian Leetch and Barry Beck -- managed to do it before the Calgary Flames' star pupil, who hit the 20-goal plateau with his second-period tally in the Flames' 2-0 win over the Colorado Avalanche last night at the Saddledome.... "He can one-time anything," said the animated Iginla. "If he gets himself ready (and the puck lands) anywhere around him, it's just BANG.
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All Sid

from the Toronto Sun,

Here was Sidney Crosby, sitting in the lavish lobby of the Ritz Carlton in Philadelphia, a hotel so brazenly exclusive it has no outdoor sign. He was wearing a nicely tailored navy suit, with the collar open and the tie tucked away somewhere for safekeeping. He fit right in with a room full of powerful corporate types but as usual, he was the youngest person in the room. He had been thinking hard for about 15 seconds. The question was tying him up in a way no NHL defenceman has been able to: What one word sums your season?
continued

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Western Conference Top 8 Complete

The Western Conference playoff teams are now known. Vancouver needed at least one point last night but lost in regulation and the LA Kings needed two points to keep their slim hopes alive, but both failed. Some jockeying for positioning between the 5-8 spots will be an interesting scenario to follow during the next few days. I imagine Detroit fans will soon be watching a few highlights from years past on VCOE but don't rub it in to the folks there, they have to be feeling quite low knowing the Canucks will not make it to playoffs for the first time since 1999. The East still has a race, with four teams stil trying to lock up the final two spots. This race could go down to the last game of the season, and I can only hope it doesn't go down to a shootout to decide it- the pressure will be directed on a individual instead of it being on the whole team, something I don't like. update 2:51pm, Next Tuesday, April 18th, VCOE will pay off the bet. I am sure many Vancouver hockey fans will enjoy watching Cheli taking a victory skate across the Vancouver ice and will be thrilled at Lidstrom's goal from Center Ice too. image image as of Friday morning, 4/14

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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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