Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
Shortly after a first-period video tribute to his career as a Flame, Theo Fleury waved from the owners’ box to acknowledge the hearty applause. And while the gesture was an honourable one the club has made a conscious effort to do more of as it approaches its 30th anniversary, it fell short of the true honour awaiting the Little Big Man.
The next time he’s highlighted at the ‘Dome the 5-foot-6 mighty mite should be looking up—way up—to his jersey being hoisted to the rafters. His No. 14 should be retired.
Update 12:25pm ET (alanah): More on Fleury today, as he speaks about his life and addictions to Christianity.ca:
A loner for much of his life, Fleury learned to escape the pressures of fame and success by turning to his two drugs of choice: alcohol and cocaine. “There’s a lot of pressure that goes along with being a professional athlete. I grew up in a small community so when you live in a city like New York that never shuts down, it’s 24 hours of fun all the time.
He continues, “The NHL isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be. It’s not all glamour and fame – people don’t see the sacrifices your family has to make, the hotels and the bus… I owe everything to hockey, everything I have is from hockey, but there’s a heavy price to be paid for choosing that profession.”
from Scott Cruickshank of the Calgary Herald,
Not exactly known for his tittering engagements with the press, Phaneuf is coming off a weekend during which he shouldered an hour’s worth of ice time—64:32, to be exact—in back-to-back matches in Los Angeles (29:55) and Anaheim (34:37).
After offering a few pat answers—“when you’re asked to do a little bit more, you have to be ready for that”—Phaneuf is again encouraged to let the world know how he handled that tremendous workload.
Finally, a chuckle—or, at least, a smirk—from the 23-year-old.
“I feel great,” says Phaneuf, walking out of the dressing room.
“I feel great. Thanks for asking.”
from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun,
Kiprusoff, whose big contract and big early-season goals-against-average had all kinds of critics questioning his abilities, continues to be a key cog in the club’s winning spree.
While the offensive heroes keep changing, he continues to be the constant, shining between the pipes night after night.
During Calgary’s winning streak, Kiprusoff has posted a sparkling 1.40 goals-against-average and .952 save percentage.
from Adam Kimelman of NHL.com,
In the 2004 Stanley Cup Final, one of the most memorable exchanges occurred in Game 3, when the Lightning’s Vincent Lecavalier and the Flames’ Jarome Iginla, each team’s best player and biggest star, dropped the gloves.
The fight sparked both teams to a memorable seven-game series, eventually won by the Lightning.
Who won the fight that night in Calgary four years ago is pretty meaningless. What does matter, though, is who the better player is. That’s for the fans to decide.
“Maybe it’s a good thing I’m not with Team Canada anymore. Because every time we saw Jarome, he was auditioning (and he’d score three or four). I’ve got the white flag now — tell him I’m not there. Go do it against Detroit.”
-Phoenix coach Wayne Gretzky talking about Jarome Iginla. More on the Flames/Coyotes matchup tonight at Flames Insider.
from Vicki Hall of the Calgary Herald,
Too old, too slow, too nonchalant—the Flames goalie lets it all whistle by him like a rising slapshot over the net.
“I’m kind of used to it,” Kiprusoff said Wednesday as the Flames packed their bags for tonight’s game in Nashville against the Predators. “That’s how it is to be a player, a goalie in the NHL.
“First, you’re young and not experienced. Then, you’re old. It’s always something.”
And it’s something Kiprusoff chooses not to concern himself with.
“I have worries to be able to help this team win games here,” the Finn said. “And take care of my body and keep in good shape.”
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
It is late on a Monday afternoon, at the start of a rare Western road trip and the NHL’s 147th-leading scorer has drawn an unexpectedly large crowd to a downtown hotel conference room.
This is Alexander Ovechkin, after the long flight in from Washington: He is wearing a tuque, in the Capitals’ colour scheme, with the No. 8 emblazoned on it, which immediately conjures up a Cat in the Hat sort of aesthetic. The crooked grin contributes to the look, as does the melting ice cream bar that he’s holding in one hand, but can’t get to eat as he patiently fields a barrage of questions.
from Robert Tychkowski of the Edmonton Sun,
Their engines stalled during the national anthem and it was nothing but cough and sputter for the first 35 minutes.
Then a 265-pound spark plug changed everything.
With the Oilers down 2-0, newly-acquired super heavyweight Steve MacIntyre plastered Calgary’s Dustin Boyd into the end boards, essentially turning him into a rinkboard advertisement, then beat up the guy who came to his rescue, Brandon Prust, sparking a three-goal rally that buried the Flames in a sea of Oiler energy.
more and watch the hit below…
from Steve MacFarlane of the Calgary Sun,
Head coach Mike Keenan’s stick was up high in the post-game presser, though. He was calm, but obviously upset about the lopsided calls.
“The question is, ‘Are they warranted,’ and then the next question is, ‘Are they penalty free for 40 minutes, the opposition, because that’s how the assessment was made,” said Keenan.
“I look down here,” he added, looking down at the game sheet, “and we’ve got four hooking penalties and they have none. I would say you would be hard-pressed to say they never took a hooking penalty tonight.”
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Does it make any sense to have your best player missing that much time, especially if he’s only taking a fourth-liner to the box with him? Coach Mike Keenan figured Iginla had no choice in the matter and hinted that he thought an instigating penalty was warranted against McCormick for starting the fight.
Iginla, for his part, said he didn’t go looking for fights; that they tended to come in spurts for him; and that it may be 30 games before he gets into another scrap. But he also suggested that he couldn’t really play his game without resorting to fighting at some point when provoked.
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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