Kukla's Korner Hockey
“I’ve been in this business too long to make predictions either on timing or anything else, I think at this point, we have to wait and see how it plays out. I think, however, if we end up not going, the reaction from the players’ side — across the board — is not going to be a good one. And my guess is it’s going to last for a very long time.”
-Donald Fehr, executive director of the NHLPA. Michael Traikos of the National Post has more on this topic.
The NHL explanation.
from Luke Fox of Sportsnet,
Some of these stars will move on due to salary cap restraints, younger talent and decreased playoff hopes. Others will be retained at any cost (but, y'know, within reason) and subjected to rounds of Twitter rumours.
The Capitals, Sharks and Flames, in particular, are about to face some tough choices.
Here is a look at the NHL's Top 17 unrestricted free agents of 2017, plus a list of the other household names whose next job is on the line.
more, Kevin Shattenkirk is #1 on the list followed by T.J. Oshie...
NEW YORK (March 27, 2017) – Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Nikita Kucherov, Dallas Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen and Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf have been named the NHL’s “Three Stars” for the week ending March 26.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
The head of the International Ice Hockey Federation remains hopeful for an NHL Olympic resolution but again made it clear that skipping the tournament in South Korea in 2018, then coming back to play in Beijing in 2022, is not the way to go.
"We have previously stated that the NHL can't just pick and choose which Olympics to participate in," Rene Fasel said in a statement to ESPN.com from the IIHF on Monday. "Our discussions are focused on going to Pyeongchang, and any discussion about Beijing can wait until this has been settled.
"Building ice hockey's profile in Asia is one of the top mandates of my current presidential term. There is a rising interest in the sport within Korea, and we would miss a huge opportunity to grow the game if we didn't have a best-on-best showcase in this country."
Three plus minutes of slow motion action from the past week in the NHL.
Markov is in the final season of a three-year contract that pays him $5,750,000 per season — a much-maligned deal when he signed that now looks like a bargain. Given his level of fitness and his stellar play, he has surely earned at a two-year deal that will likely be signed in the off-season. Markov has made it clear in the past he doesn’t want to play anywhere else, and the Canadiens don’t want him playing elsewhere, not with Mikhail Sergachev a couple of seasons away from top-pairing duties and Nathan Beaulieu still wildly inconsistent.
At the end of that contract, Markov should be a solid contender for a spot in the Hall of Fame. And I, for one, can’t wait to hear what he has to say the day he’s elected.
-Jack Todd at the Montreal Gazette where you can read more on Markov.
No penalty on the play and Dumoulin went the the dressing room but did return.
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
If Henrik Lundqvist wanted to be tested in order to prepare for the playoffs upon returning from a seven-game absence covering nearly three weeks, The King surely was that here on Sunday in a 6-3 empty-net abetted defeat to the Ducks.
“It was a challenging game,” Lundqvist said with a wry smile after surrendering five goals on 33 shots in 58:37. “You hope for maybe a little easier game, but there are no easy games in this league.”
It is impossible for there to be an easy game with the Rangers making it as difficult as possible on themselves and their goaltender. Despite being tied 3-3 entering the third, the Blueshirts were guilty of a multitude of bleeps, bloopers and blunders in their decisions, puck-movement and coverage all night long.
“Too many guys brought their ‘C’ game and that’s not good enough,” coach Alain Vigneault said following the defeat that prevented the Rangers from clinching a playoff spot. “It was not an easy game for Hank, but if I know him the way everyone does, he’s going to get better.”
Below, watch Corey Perry and Brendan Smith go at it...
Home Team in Caps
DETROIT 3, Minnesota 2 (OT)
Dallas 2, NEW JERSEY 1 (OT)
Philadelphia 6, PITTSBURGH 2
WINNIPEG 2, Vancouver 1
ANAHEIM 6, NY Rangers 3
DUCKS CLAIM SOLE POSSESSION OF FIRST PLACE IN PACIFIC DIVISION
Ryan Getzlaf collected a season-high four assists to help the Ducks extend their point streak to seven games (6-0-1), including four straight wins. Anaheim (41-23-11, 93 points) moved ahead of idle San Jose (42-26-7, 91 points) and Edmonton (41-25-9, 91 points) to claim sole possession of first place in the Pacific Division.
* Getzlaf, who leads the Ducks with 14-52—66 this season, eclipsed the 50-assist mark for the seventh time in his NHL career (all w/ ANA) to extend his franchise record.
* Patrick Eaves (27-18—45), who was acquired by the Ducks on Feb. 24, scored twice to extend his single-season career highs for goals and points.
* Jonathan Bernier (25 saves) improved to 8-0-1 in his last nine appearances dating to March 7 (1.64 GAA, .944 SV%, 1 SO).
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 firstname.lastname@example.org