Kukla's Korner Hockey
“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.
from Jim Kelley at Sportsnet,
The disheartening thing that comes off the Game 2 loss is that the Flames were at home and that they tried hard, and they still didn’t look all that better than they did in Game One or than they did last season.
In many ways, they looked the same, a fact that did not go unnoticed by Flames captain Jarome Iginla.
“There were many good things out there, but we obviously had some breakdowns,” he said. “Again.”
It’s that one-word, “again”, that seems to accurately size up the plight of the Flames in this early going.
from Jean Lefebvre of the Calgary Herald,
While that initial victory has been elusive for the Flames and Avalanche, the reasons for the early struggles are pretty easy to pin down.
Start with the guys between the pipes—Colorado’s Peter Budaj (.795) and Calgary Miikka Kiprusoff (.807) have the worst save percentages among goaltenders who have played at least one full game.
On the special-teams side of things, the Flames’ power play is worst in the league, as is Colorado’s penalty-killing.
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
If Bertuzzi were just lumbering and slow, that would be one thing. But it’s clear Bertuzzi has absolutely zero ability to manage his emotions and continues to get his teams in trouble by taking stupid penalties.
His flying elbow at Daniel Sedin’s head Saturday night was easily a suspendable offense and proves Bertuzzi has learned nothing from the Steve Moore incident. Then his hit from behind on Ryan Johnson later in the period almost cost the Calgary Flames the game in regulation time.
more hockey notes…
from Bruce Dowbiggin of the Calgary Herald,
If Thursday’s loss was shock, then Saturday’s collapse was disbelief.
The Flames threw every emotional gambit at the Vancouver rematch—including Jarome Iginla’s annual “Fight a Canuck Night”—and still lost. Sure, they salvaged a point, but they had Roberto Luongo on a bad night and couldn’t seal the deal at home.
As Kelly Hrudey astutely noted, the Canucks wrote a primer for the league on how to break down Calgary’s standup defensive style.
So Where to Go Now?
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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