Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Anaheim Ducks,
More than 15,000 fans crowded into the Honda Center parking lot Saturday evening to celebrate the 2007 Stanley Cup Champions Ducks. Fans arrived as early as 8 a.m. to secure a spot for the celebration, which lasted from 6:30 p.m., rolled on as the sun went down and concluded just before 9 p.m.
After some pregame musical entertainment and video on the several giant screens located around the parking lot, the Ducks arrived via double-decker bus down Katella Avenue. They slowly made their way down the red carpet, stopping along the way to receive congratulations from fans who had staked out spots along the walkway.
pic via Reuters
from the LA Times,
“I’ve played for it three times and, you know, I wasn’t able to touch it,” said Rob, a forward who in his 13-year career had chased the Cup with the Florida Panthers and the Ducks in 2003.
That, of course, changed.
And now one thing is undeniable: Rob, who played brilliantly in the Ducks now-vaunted checking line, is no longer in Scott’s shadow.
As big brother handed the Cup to him that night, Rob was awash in emotion.
“I couldn’t have written anything up better than this,” he said.
more (reg. req.)
from Terry Frei at ESPN,
But the Southern California media—perhaps self-conscious of all the prattle they are hearing from outsiders and feeling too insecure to question or challenge it, and even buying into it to try to justify decisions that give the Clippers more staffing on the road than the Kings or the Ducks—aren’t into challenging the urban myths.
The Ducks now have had 34 straight sellouts. A bandwagon? Of course it is. But that’s also a lot more consecutive sellouts than Detroit (factoring in the playoffs), Dallas and Colorado have had.
The Kings did some major league papering of the house last season, but come on, their official average of 16,859 was still over 90 percent of capacity, so it’s absurd to portray them as a colossal box-office failure, especially since they were the second-worst team in the Western Conference.
A great job putting together the SCF in pictures.
Check it out..
from the Long Beach Press-Telegram,
Since 1973, Bob Miller has been the heart, soul and consciousness of the Los Angeles Kings, a Hall of Fame announcer who has been to his franchise what Vin Scully has been to the Dodgers and Chick Hearn was to the Lakers….
“First off, I want to applaud what the Ducks have accomplished,” said Miller Thursday morning from his home in West Hills. “It’s tremendous what they did. They deserved it. They’ve been playing
great. And you have to give them all the credit in the world.
“But that said, I’m jealous, I’m envious, I suspect I’m even sulking a bit. I always wanted the Ducks to win a Stanley Cup after the Kings did. I do think what they’ve done will help the sport of hockey in Southern California. It’s definitely brought tremendous notice to it.”
from Mark Whicker of the OC Register,
I think you can put him among the top three or four goaltenders in the league,” said Bob Sauve, who is Giguere’s agent and is, if anything, underselling him….
Burke called Sauve on Thursday to say he comes in peace. Sauve also sounded conciliatory, saying Giguere wants to stay and will do so “if he’s treated fairly,” which, of course, could mean a hundred things.
Only the Ducks and Kings can give Giguere easy access to the doctors who operated on his son, Maxime, in April. The generous role that owners Henry and Susan Samueli played in that episode also resonates with Giguere.
But the Kings have more cap room. Even if the Ducks could sign Giguere for $4.5 million, that’s $17.5 million for Giguere, Pronger and S. Niedermayer in an overall budget that probably won’t surpass $42 million.
Tonight, three Anaheim Ducks, Jean-Sebastien Giguere, Chris Pronger and Brad May will appear on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
NPR has put some audio online, exploring the issue of how—despite their Stanley Cup win last night—southern California still has a long way to go when it comes to loving hockey.
It’s a short piece, which can be heard here if you’re interested.
*thanks to John for pointing this piece out to me earlier today.
from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
But there are many more warm-n’-fuzzy examples than Selanne’s.
Look at head coach Randy Carlyle, who never won a Cup during his stellar 18-year playing career, but now joins an even more select club as the bench boss of a champ.
Look at GM Brian Burke, who showed gorilla-sized gonads in remaking the team in his own image, at a pace far faster than a Jason Allison breakaway.
Or how about Dustin Penner, Andy McDonald and Chris Kunitz? None of those three were regarded highly enough to be drafted by any NHL team, yet all three combined for 14 goals and 28 points this post-season.
from Pierre Lebrun of the CP via Yahoo,
It’s debatable what kind of impact their Cup win will have on hockey. The NHL is a copycat league and if other clubs try to mimic Anaheim’s defence-first, hard-hitting style, the new NHL won’t quite be what it had hoped coming out of the lockout.
That’s not a shot at the Ducks, who were well-built and whose determination and work ethic was unmatched this season. They deserved the Cup. But from a fan’s perspective, the prospect of other teams adopting the defence-first philosophy won’t be terribly exciting.
The kind of hockey that Buffalo, Ottawa and Pittsburgh play in the Eastern Conference is what the league was hoping to see coming out of the lockout, a breathless offensive-minded style.
more on the Ducks…
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.
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