Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
Eleven minutes to go in a 6-1 game and the crowd was on its feet.
Not because of Daymond Langkow’s hat-trick minutes earlier or because the Flames turned in the type of beat-down fans have expected to see more of all year.
This time, it was for Miikka Kiprusoff.
Yep—the guy relegated to backup status if only in the sports pages as the collective hearts of the city were aflutter over the signing of Curtis Joseph this week.
from George Johnson at ESPN,
The joker in the deck, however, is how incumbent Miikka Kiprusoff, the silent Finn, will react to the support (threat?) posed by a goalie who, although 40 and well past his peak, has still won 446 regular-season NHL games and himself been feted as a Vezina Trophy finalist.
The Flames can argue until they’re blue in the face that Joseph’s arrival means a fresher, more motivated Kipper, that he will embrace the competition and chance to swap stories and secrets with a fellow lodge brother.
Nobody’s trying to turn this into a goaltending controversy, but Kiprusoff could easily interpret the signing as a lack of faith, a kind of betrayal.
from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
Darryl Sutter’s annual bid to bolster his team’s playoff chances started yesterday with the acquisition of 40-year-old insurance policy Curtis Joseph.
Not only does it signal Sutter’s obvious belief the team has the main ingredients necessary to challenge for hockey’s most coveted silver chalice, it also means the hype surrounding the club’s young goaltenders is just that.
At around 1pm ET, the Fan590 show Hockey Central reported that Curtis Joseph has been signed as a Calgary Flame.
This has been repeated by EJ Hradek on NHL Live.
Update 1:35pm ET: From Hradek (1:26pm ET) on ESPN,
Sources told ESPN The Magazine’s E.J. Hradek that the veteran goaltender has signed a deal with the Calgary Flames. Details surrounding the deal were not disclosed.
Update 1:44pm ET: As of 1:41pm ET, Darren Dreger at TSN says decision not yet final,
Calgary appears to be the likely destination, but discussions with the Rangers are still taking place.
Update 2:01pm ET: Sportsnet.ca confirms Cujo’s signing with Calgary by their own sources.
Update3:24pm ET: From John Dellapina a Blueshirts Blog (NY Daily News),
Curtis Joseph is not signing with the Rangers. While Glen Sather checked on Cujo while talking about a new contract for Henrik Lundqvist over the weekend with agent Don Meehan, the Rangers weren’t as ready to commit as Calgary. By all accounts, the Rangers did not make an offer, leaving Joseph to back up Miikka Kiprusoff rather than Lundqvist the rest of this season.
Update 3:39pm ET: With the headline “Joseph Chooses Flames over Rangers”, TSN comments,
Looking to take the work load off Miikka Kirpusoff for the stretch run, the Calgary Flames have veteran goaltender Curtis Joseph for the remainder of the season.
Update 4:07pm ET: From Eric Duhatschek at the Globe & Mail,
Curtis Joseph sits there, on the unemployment line for the better part of half an NHL season, with no real interest in his services. Then he goes overseas to play for Canada in the Spengler Cup, and suddenly, there is a bidding war for his services. In the end, Joseph opted to sign with the Calgary Flames, a team desperately in need of an experienced back-up goaltender, choosing their overture over ones made by among others, the New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs and San Jose Sharks.
Update 5:12pm ET: Salary update from TSN,
...the Calgary Flames have signed goaltender Curtis Joseph to a one-year, $1.5 million contract. With half of the season gone, he’ll earn about $650,000 for the rest of the year.
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
Phaneuf also plays the point on the power play, where he has more shots (139) than any other NHL defencemen. He plays on the penalty kill, and, of course, five-on-five. He’s only 22 and Sunday’s game was only his 207th career outing, but you’d never know it….
He’s good; maybe even Norris-trophy good some day, whenever Lidstrom retires.
“He’s pretty much wired for sound every day,” says Keenan of his young blue-liner. “You never worry about Dion liking hockey or living life. It’s his personality ... he’s a treat to be around,” adds Keenan, who’s coached some big-minute, high-end D-men—Chris Pronger in St. Louis, Mark Howe in Philadelphia and Brian Leetch in New York. Guys who want to be out on the ice all the time and don’t run out of gas.
from Darren Dreger of TSN,
Interest from at least five teams is believed to have been narrowed to two with Curtis Joseph contemplating the resumption of his NHL career in either San Jose or Calgary.
Sources tell TSN both the Flames and Sharks are keenly interested in bringing the 40 year old goaltender on board, with Joseph expected to make his decision this weekend, if not sooner, perhaps as early as today.
from the National Post,
Lest you think Iginla was being picked on during the 3-1 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes, he had company on Tuesday in the second-period doghouse. In fact, personnel from the top two lines—Iginla, Kristian Huselius, Craig Conroy, Owen Nolan, Daymond Langkow and Alex Tanguay, the latter seeing a little more than two minutes of ice time in the middle frame.
The message from head coach Mike Keenan was clear—ice time has to be earned, and his top dogs weren’t earning it against the Desert Dogs.
But he also wanted to acknowledge the job being done by the worker bees on the third and fourth lines, and was looking for a spark from them.
from the National Post,
Standing near the Calgary Flames dressing room yesterday morning, Don Meehan scoffed.
The agent confirmed that those numbers blowing out of the east all winter—a five-year extension at US$30-million for Dion Phaneuf, a 10-year extension worth $60-million—are, in fact, fabrications.
“You know, I think it’s people making guesses, really,” said Meehan, who, of course, would know—he is the representative of Phaneuf, who is facing restricted free agency this summer. Calgary’s young defenceman yesterday was elected as a starter for the first time for National Hockey League All-Star Game later this month.
from the Calgary Sun,
“As a player, we all have our pride, and all have a certain way we want to play and a certain way we expect ourselves to play. It’s certainly not going all that great for me, but what can I do about it. I’ve just got to worry about the next game, and, hopefully, be better tomorrow.”
Heading into tonight’s clash with the Phoenix Coyotes, Tanguay has collected 10 goals and 33 points in 40 games. It’s behind the pace he’s set in recent campaigns, but that’s just the beginning of the cloud hovering over him.
While Kristian Huselius has flourished in the top-line left-winger—earning the NHL’s second star of the week honours with yet another prolific spell—Tanguay has been demoted to the second unit.
Compound it with the fact he’s not on the top powerplay unit, and Tanguay’s offensive totals have taken a hit.
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
The only downside to Huselius’s scoring surge: Every time he and Iginla put on a show, it only increases his value on the open market, if Calgary cannot get him signed to a contract extension before July 1, at which time he would become an unrestricted free agent. Huselius carried a lot of baggage when he arrived in Calgary a couple of years back.
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.
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