Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

A New Chapter For Scott Stevens

from MSG Network,

In his first interview since he announced his retirement, Stevens discussed the reason behind his decision, what he is doing now, and his thoughts on rule changes in the NHL. From 1982 to 2004, Stevens prowled the ice in a manner rarely seen. His baby blue eyes burned with unparalleled passion. He unleashed his 6'2", 215-pound frame with such fury that every player made sure to know when Stevens was on the ice. Yet, especially early in his career, he was among the leagues best offensive defensemen. He was the complete package. He played in 1,635 games, the fourth highest total in league history. He scored 196 goals, played on three Stanley Cup championship teams, and was awarded the Conn Smythe trophy as playoff MVP in 2000.
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Lindros At Home

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Lindros finally has fulfilled what many consider his destiny: becoming a Maple Leaf. And against a backdrop of modest expectations, not to mention a modest salary, he has quickly become a dominant player and a team leader. "No, I'm not surprised at all," said linemate and workout pal Tie Domi, who has known Lindros since both were teens playing in the Ontario Hockey League. "I was pretty confident in him before he even got here, and when he was here, I knew that he would excel under the pressure.

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Over The Boards

-"The owners can sit there and do giveaways and lower ticket prices to get the fans back to the game knowing that what they are really doing is taking it out of our pockets," Roenick said. "It's important to get people back into the arenas to watch hockey, but it is a lot easier to do when (the owners) know they still get their money back because they are taking it out of our paycheck." -When asked about the NBA's new dress code, Tampa Bay Lightning coach John Tortorella said he was disappointed at how the U.S. team dressed at last spring's world championship when he was an assistant coach. Apparently, USA Hockey sent the players a memo telling them to dress "casual." "And they came in with jeans with holes," Tortorella said. "You say `casual' to an athlete and he's going to push it to the limit. I thought we were dressed like slobs and it's not going to happen here." -"I think I'm competing," he said. "I don't think I have to be angry to score goals. I have to be skating. I have to be shooting. I've got to be better and I will be. I believe that."- Jarome Iginla -During the one week break, the Flyers did get a chance to work on special teams, an aspect of the game that has become more important under the new NHL rules. Going into Friday night's games, the Flyers were ranked 23rd on the power play and 26th in penalty-killing. "It was a matter of sorting things out with the new [dimensions] of the ice surface," Primeau said. "I think we will be on an upward trend now." -Through a scheduling quirk, the Detroit Red Wings will face just two different opponents in their next five games. The Red Wings look to become the first NHL team with eight victories this season Saturday when they play the first of two consecutive contests against the Columbus Blue Jackets. After facing the Blue Jackets again Monday in Columbus, Detroit battles "Original Six" rival Chicago three straight times, beginning Thursday.

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His Beloved Leafs

from the Toronto Star,

An odyssey that started over "a number of beers in the pub," will conclude with an experience of a lifetime tonight for Maple Leaf fan Nick Harris. Harris, a 35-year-old businessman from Glasgow, flew into Toronto from Scotland last night for the sole purpose of attending tonight's game at the Air Canada Centre against the Philadelphia Flyers. His whirlwind tour will end when he returns home tomorrow. Harris managed to get Leaf tickets through a university friend who is in from Britain visiting his wife's family in Toronto. When he learned about the tickets, Harris immediately went out and spent $1,200 on an airline ticket for a 36-hour trip.

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Hype Game

from the Globe and Mail,

In its infinite wisdom, the National Hockey League has scheduled the Colorado Avalanche and the Vancouver Canucks, bitter divisional rivals, to play each other six times in the next six weeks, starting tonight at GM Place. It seems a little odd, considering the last time they met, there were five fights and Steve Moore of the Avs suffered a serious head injury, leading to a long, costly suspension for Todd Bertuzzi of the Canucks, a criminal assault charge and likely a civil suit, along with a black eye for the game.

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Another Coach Complains, Another Faces It

"I don't understand how they called that many power plays against us," he said. "I don't understand how we're that bad. I guess the Detroit Red Wings get those calls in their building."- Randy Carlyle, Anaheim Mighty Ducks coach after losing to the Wings last night. Coach John Tortorella of the Tampa Bay Lightning talking after his team lost to Ottawa yesterday, "You can't find your big guys playing against probably one of the best teams right now, guess what's going to happen?" "We can't have guys lying in the weeds — our best players — in games against the best teams in the league. They need to be front and center, and they're not."

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Boulton Suspended

via TSN,

Atlanta tough guy Eric Boulton has been suspended indefinitely by the NHL for his elbow to the head of Tampa rookie Paul Ranger, the latest blow to a Thrashers team unravelling early this season. Colin Campbell, the NHL's executive vice-president and the man charged with handing out discipline, will meet Boulton on Monday to determine how many games his suspension will be.

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Legace Belongs On Canadian List

from Slam,

"It was a question of eliminating as much controversy as we can," said Olympic executive director Wayne Gretzky, upon the release of the list. "When we get down to the final 23 players there are going to be a lot of players that will be second guessed on." Hey Wayne, forget the final 23, the second guessing has already begun. At first glance the most glaring omission is that of Red Wings' netminder Manny Legace. How the Toronto native, who leads the league with six wins and has compiled a 1.98 goals against average and a .918 save percentage, did not make the top 81 is ridiculous.

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Hartley Claims Hits Were “Bad Timing”

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

If the Atlanta Thrashers keep this up, they'll have to change their marketing slogan from Blueland to Goonland. It's already a nickname that's taken hold as far as some NHL coaches are concerned. In a surprising turn of events, not only are the Thrashers are off to an embarrassing start to the regular season with a 2-5 record in which their high-powered offense has registered just two goals in their five losses, but they have also become a lightning rod of criticism from fans, media and other coaches following a series of ugly on-ice incidents.

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Avs Best Move Is To Lose Sakic & Blake

from Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated,

Colorado GM Pierre Lacroix didn't need to watch his team blow a three-goal lead at home -- for the second time in less than a week, no less -- to realize a window was closing. The team he has constructed -- or more accurately, the team he has left after being squeezed by the newly imposed salary-cap restrictions -- is simply not good enough to win in its current form. With sub-par goaltending and a patchwork defense bleeding points away, the Avs face an uphill struggle just to grab a playoff berth.

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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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