Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bob Duff of the Windsor Star,
When Bowman was coach and GM in Buffalo, he hired Keenan to coach the Sabres’ AHL farm club in Rochester, N.Y.
“I think that a lot of what I know ... I’ve learned from Scotty Bowman.”
Apparently, though, there are certain things Keenan never gleaned from Bowman’s vast hockey mind.
Such as knowing when to show up.
Bowman owned a knack for arriving to take charge of teams on the brink of success, which he did in Montreal, Pittsburgh and Detroit.
Lately, Keenan has acted more like a homeless coach, simply happy to have a warm bench to stand behind.
from the Calgary Herald,
Holden: “Are you available to skate tomorrow? There’s a team that wants you to skate.”
Dutton: “Well, I’ve got some family stuff. I was kind of looking forward to the day off.”
Holden: “What if I was to tell you it was the Calgary Flames.”
Dutton: “The NHL Calgary Flames?”
Holden: “That would be the one.”
Dutton: “Uh, yeah, I’m pretty sure I could find time.”
from the Calgary Sun,
The numbers along Dion Phaneuf’s name on the stats sheet nearly light up.
In the season opener, the Calgary Flames defenceman fired three shots on goal, recorded five hits and collected a pair of assists—including one when Daymond Langkow deflected his powerplay point shot.
But the eye-popping digits from the 3-2 loss to Philadelphia Thursday night fall under the category of minutes played: 31:20.
“Yeah, we see the sheets,” Phaneuf said. “You play when you’re asked to play. When you get tapped to go, it’s your job to go out and do your job.
“Some nights it may be more and some nights it may be less, but when you’re asked to go, you go out and do your job.”
Alan Ryder of the Globe and Mail has some advice for the coaches of the six Canadian teams…
I know you are new to Calgary. So I thought I might give you some insight into your Flames. You inherit a pretty good team, a playoff team. But the West is a tough conference, the Northwest is a tough division and it is important to get the most out of your guys to even ensure a playoff spot.
Something went wrong with the back end of the team last year. Goaltending is a fragile thing. Miikka Kiprusoff was not the same goalie as in prior seasons. I know this is a sensitive point, but he is no Roberto Luongo (who was the most valuable goalie in the NHL last season).
from the Calgary Herald,
...Anyway, they had an all-girl Western band playing. We’re having a few pops and enjoying ourselves.
“Well, by the end of the night, Mike’s up on stage, Burnsie’s up on stage. They’re both playing guitar and singing—Mike has a very good voice, I’ll have you know—with the band and the place is just going wild. That, to me, is Mike Keenan. “A funny guy. A personable guy. That other guy, the one you hear about all the time, he’s a stranger to me.’‘
The other guy, the one you hear about all the time, is the Mike Keenan of legend. The snarling, bullying, caustic martinet capable of eliciting either undying devotion or undying scorn from his players.
from the Calgary Sun,
“Dean is a friend of mine, but if it was Dean or somebody I don’t know, there’s no need for that.
“There’s nobody that can say, ‘I never hit anybody kinda cheap’ because you can get your elbows up or stick up, but you can’t hit somebody like that.”
Although the league has taken heat for being lenient on violent incidents, players were applauding Colin Campbell—the NHL’s disciplinarian—for taking a stand.
“It’s good the league did something,” Conroy said.
more on the suspension of Downie from Craig Conroy and other Flames too…
The Calgary Flames have signed free agent forward Mark Smith. The 29 year-old checker had spent his entire career with the San Jose Sharks organization after being drafted in the ninth round in 1997.
Smith was hampered by injuries last season and finished with 13 points in 41 games. He was invited to camp with the New York Rangers, but was released earlier this week.
fro Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
Stopping short of calling his team lazy, Mike Keenan delivered his first public tongue-lashing of the Flames, punctuating a tirade-filled practice with a frank critique of his squad.
“I am prepared to say the work ethic of this team can be upgraded considerably,” said Keenan, minutes after a spirited skate that had players rubbing one another out while Keenan screamed.
“We have to change the habits around here, maybe not the culture.”
From the CP,
The Iron Mike watch is underway in Calgary.
Will new head coach Mike Keenan alienate his players? Or will he give a club that underachieved last season the edge it needs to be a Stanley Cup contender?
Eyebrows disappeared into hairlines when Flames general manager Darryl Sutter brought Keenan on board in June, partly because Jim Playfair, handpicked by Sutter to replace himself as head coach prior to the 2006-07 season, agreed to stay on as associate coach to Keenan.
From Eric Duhatschek at the Globe & Mail,
Halfway through training camp and the Calgary Flames have yet to win a game and no one seems unduly concerned — and why should they be? They are a mostly veteran bunch, led by a coach, Mike Keenan, who has been around forever and understands how ultimately meaningless exhibition play can be.
The goal, all along, has been for the Flames to hit the ground running for their home opener on Oct. 4 against the Philadelphia Flyers. In the meantime, Keenan has been installing a new system while trying to get a cursory look at a handful of the organization’s prospects, few of whom will be around when the puck drops for keeps.
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 email@example.com