Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Mike Toth at Sportsnet.ca:
With Cliff Fletcher at the helm, the Leafs have suddenly become Ontario’s answer to the Calgary Flames, as no fewer than six members of the 1989 Stanley Cup squad have switched their allegiances from “The ‘C’ of Red” to the Blue & White. In addition to Fletcher, the architect of that Calgary triumph, Toronto’s management and coaching line-up includes Al Coates, Joe Nieuwendyk, Tom Watt, Doug Gilmour and Tim Hunter, with all of them expected to play a key role in Fletcher’s long-range plan to transform the lousy Leafs into serious contenders.
And can you really blame Fletcher for being so attracted to Flames?
After all, when Cliff exited Calgary to take over the Leafs for the first time in the early-90’s, he immediately fleeced his former team by pulling off the “Killer” trade that made Gilmour’s gang the toast of Toronto.
from Steve MacFarlane of the Calgary Sun,
“We lost some very good players that were big parts of our team—and they’re going to help the teams they went to, no question—but the people we brought in are very good also,” said Iginla of the new-look Flames.
“I’d say that we’re probably a little grittier, and maybe a little bigger, but I think we still have that skilled side.”
Too many goals against was what plagued the Flames last year, so the team hopes the grittier, defensively conscious additions will make the difference after a third consecutive first-round playoff exit.
“You’ve got to be able to play more than one-dimensional,” said Iginla.
“I think it’s gonna be great, and I’m really looking forward to it.”
from the Calgary Flames,
The Calgary Flames hit the streets Wednesday to make special deliveries to some season ticket holders.
Calgary Flames CEO and President Ken King. head coach Mike Keenan and Flames players Dion Phaneuf, Robyn Regehr, Wayne Primeau, David Moss, Mike Cammalleri, Andre Roy, along with Flames alumni Jim Peplinski, personally delivered season tickets to Calgary Flames season ticket holders.
The Flames set out in different directions to visit Calgary residences and businesses as 20 lucky people had their ticket books delivered personally.
continued with pictures…
from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun,
Reports Calgary Flames forward Marcus Nilson has signed to play with CSKA Moscow are “not correct,” according to his agent.
However, J.P. Barry said he and the two clubs are trying to work out a way for Nilson to play in Russia’s Kontinental Hockey League.
“We’re exploring the possibility of him playing there,” Barry said yesterday. “We were hoping to do it quietly.”...
The Flames could have bought Nilson out of the final year of his two-year, US$2-million contract, but decided not to exercise that option. GM Darryl Sutter said the veterans would have to earn roster spots this season.
Still, it appears Nilson isn’t in the team’s plans, which is why Barry and the Flames are negotiating.
from Flames Insider at the Calgary Herald,
Wonder why Todd Bertuzzi wound up with No. 7 with the Flames when he’s always worn either 4 or 44 as an NHLer (and before that as an OHL star)? Roger Millions of Sportsnet asked Bertuzzi that very question today at the Flames’ charity golf tournament luncheon and this was the response:
“Obviously, I’ve always worn 4. I think it was just time for a change. Me and a couple of buddies were having a beer and trying to figure out what to do (about his sweater number) and one of the players that came up who I’ve always idolized is Phil Esposito. So I thought I’d go with it and see where that goes.”
from Steven Noble of the Calgary Sun,
Mike Cammalleri has taken his Italian heritage and his family’s tomato sauce with him wherever he’s gone.
Now the new Flames sniper is looking forward to bringing it to Calgary—along with his goal-scoring touch.
“My dad has two brothers so those families and our family would all go to my grandparents’ house, we’d get 20 bushels of tomatoes and go in the garage from eight in the morning until six at night,” he says, recalling one of his favourite traditions.
“Obviously I’m well aware I wasn’t the most popular pickup in Calgary Flame history but at the same time I think you’ve got to give it a little time and give me a chance,” he offered. “I can’t lie to you it’s not the jersey I thought I was going to wear, but at the same time I played enough games here to know what kind of fan base and what kind of team they are.”
-Todd Bertuzzi from the CP via TSN where you can read more on the Flames…
From the Canadian Press,
The family of a budding hockey star who died mysteriously last winter near Windsor, Ont., says he died of an underlying heart condition.
Mickey Renaud, captain of the Ontario Hockey League Windsor Spitfires, died in February at his home in nearby Tecumseh.
In a statement, his family says an autopsy determined that the 19-year-old player died of a condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
*Previous report on KK is here.
from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun,
One place, during the NHLer’s recent trip to Africa, had propsfor them to actually demonstrate—branches that crudely looked like hockey sticks.
So, using a lock for a puck, they demonstrated passing and shooting.
“I don’t know if the kids got it,” Regehr says with a chuckle, “or if they just thought we were crazy.”
Crazy or not, the memories that the Calgary Flames defenceman re-turned with from Africa will last with him forever.
from Scott Cruickshank of the Calgary Herald via the National Post,
“Look at our team now,” Sutter said Tuesday afternoon at the Pengrowth Saddledome. “We’ve got 15 or 16 forwards, eight or nine defencemen, who are legitimate NHL players. They’re not all going to play here. So it’s a different mindset . . . there are veterans who are going to have to make our team.”
Incoming forwards include the pro-seasoned likes of Michael Cammalleri, Todd Bertuzzi, Rene Bourque, Curtis Glencross, Andre Roy, Jamie Lundmark and Kyle Greentree. Factor in knocking-on-the-door prospects such as Brandon Prust, Mikael Backlund and Dustin Boyd, and Sutter’s correct - incumbents should be nervous.
“It’s a competition thing,” said Sutter. “These veterans . . . they don’t have jobs on our team. We have a good team, but we want to be more than good.”
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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