Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Daily Southtown,
While there have been games televised locally from Chicago Stadium and the United Center in the past, tonight’s game against Detroit, to be screened in high-definition by Comcast SportsNet, is the first time it’s been the Hawks’ idea to open the electronic door since TVs had round 7-inch screens and long-gone Channel 4 was the outlet.
With that in mind, here’s a baker’s dozen’s worth of games that a generation of Hawks fans should have seen on local TV, either broadcast or cable, but didn’t - even though in many cases, the rest of the U.S. and Canada could view every second.
March 12, 1966: Goaltender Cesare Maniago is the victim when Bobby Hull’s booming 55-foot slap shot rockets into the back of the New York net. It’s Hull’s 51st of the season, breaking Maurice “Rocket” Richard’s single-season record. There’s bedlam in the Stadium for eight minutes.
from the Chicago Tribune,
It is an interactive wonderland worthy of a cover charge. It is a bedroom disguised as a virtual museum of hockey, perfectly ordered and brilliantly gleaming with trophies and plaques, jerseys and posters, a little boy’s dream documented and photographed so thoroughly and displaying such obvious success you have to assume this particular boy has gone on to greatness.
And you would be right. But it gets even better. It is history overlapping, Patrick Kane starring as Forrest Gump.
from Ed Sherman at the Chicago Tribune,
You have to hand it to the Blackhawks. Considering marketing never has been their strong suit, they’re getting a ton of mileage out of airing Sunday’s home game against the Red Wings on Comcast SportsNet.
The Hawks could register twice, perhaps even three times the number of viewers they have for road games for Sunday’s game. The team’s road games are averaging a 0.4 rating on CSN this season (one local ratings point is worth 34,550 homes).
CSN likely would be happy with a rating between 1.0 and 1.5 Sunday, and would do cartwheels over a 2.0. Much of it could hinge on the Bears. The best-case scenario would be for their game against Oakland to end at 6 p.m., allowing fans to switch their channels quickly to catch the opening face-off. A long Bears game that goes into overtime will put a dent in the ratings.
from the Chicago Tribune,
“I’m making progress every day,” Havlat said. “I’m still not in place with a couple of movements to where I want to be. I still have to work on those.”
Havlat has been strengthening his right shoulder and will wear a brace during practices and games.
“We have to make sure the shoulder is strong enough, almost as strong as the other one, because when I come back I want to help as much as I can,” Havlat said. “If I come back 50 percent, I can’t be the player I can be.”
added 3:03pm, from Icing at the Chicago Tribune,
Savard said he approached injured winger Martin Havlat this morning and said: “You ready? You playing tonight?”
Havlat said not yet as he recovers from the shoulder injury he suffered during the first game of the season.
“As long as his mind is clear, that’s the biggest thing,’ Savard said. “He’s going to have to make that decision, I can’t make it for him.”
from the Chicago Tribune,
The Hawks suffered a big loss when veteran center Kevyn Adams went down with a knee injury with 8 minutes 27 seconds left in the first period. Adams, the leader of the Hawks both on and off the ice, was checked into the boards and his left knee appeared to buckle.
“It looks like the ACL and MCL, and he will be out for quite a while,” Savard said. “We lose a great leader, but it gives somebody a chance to get an opportunity. He has been awesome in the locker room.”
more on the Blackhawks
from the Chicago Daily Herald,
Martin Havlat is not quite ready for a practice with contact.
“I was hoping for this week, but we want to make sure he’s mentally ready for it. That’s a big key,” Denis Savard said. “His mind-set is not quite there yet.”
more on the Blackhawks…
from Kevin Kaduk of the Northwest Herald,
It didn’t take long Monday for Rocky Wirtz to answer the questions many of us have been wanting to ask for about, oh, the past two decades or so.
At any point, did he ever set dear old Dad down for a talk about TV and its magical ability to provide a free three-hour commercial for his product, Chicago Blackhawks hockey?
And did he ever try to argue against the archaic notion that televising home games would hurt the turnstile count?
He had to have said something, right?
“Absolutely,” Wirtz said of his father, Bill, who died in September. “And it usually started and stopped about there.”
from ESPN Fantasy Talk,
A little birdie (aka a report in the vaunted Chicago Tribune) told me that Havlat may be back in the active lineup at some point during the current Chicago homestand this week. Say what you will of Havlat’s fragility—and much has been said, after all—but he’s shown he’s capable of point-per-game pace when in the lineup, and there’s no reason to believe he won’t achieve that upon his return.
read on for more fantasy talk…
Not something I would usually note here on KK, but what a story…
Raised by a single mother battling unpaid bills and factory work, Byfuglien (pronounced BUFF-lin) all but grew up in Memorial Arena. If the ice wasn’t available or he couldn’t talk his way into the play, he’d sit in the stands for hours, watching alone….
“I think he knew hockey was his salvation,’’ said Dale Smedsmo, a former Roseau High standout and pro player who has dated Byfuglien’s mother for three years. “School wasn’t easy for him, and he knew he had to make it in hockey. When he signed that contract, it was a personal victory because he’s worked very hard.’’
from Icing at the Chicago Tribune,
You see and hear things when part of your job is spent inside NHL lockerrooms….
But the sight of 18-year-old Patrick Kane walking through the vistors lockerroom in Dallas on Wednesday morning wearing only a pair of bright, lime-green boxer shorts was something else. His teammates hooted and hollered at the fashion statement and all he could do was smile.
“I guess I’m just a colorful guy,” Kane said when asked about his attire by a Dallas reporter. Yes, a Dallas reporter, not me. “These are just weird designs on them. I have some with shamrocks. The guys are always giving me a hard time about them.”
Update 1:22pm ET: Patrick Kane name “Rookie of the Month”
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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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