Kukla's Korner Hockey
Almost two minutes long...
from Luke Fox of Sportsnet,
His voice sounds like childhood, like staying up past bedtime, like wearing out the front edge of the family couch.
And we’ll get to hear it one more time, at least.
Since the legendary Foster Hewitt passed away in 1985, hockey’s most recognizable play-by-play voice has belonged to Robert Cecil Cole, who broadcasted at least one game of the Stanley Cup Final from 1980 through 2008.
Cole will turn 81 next month. With age and accuracy heading in opposite directions, he has slipped to Hockey Night in Canada‘s second line, behind the razor-sharp Jim Hughson, 57. And now his future in the booth is in doubt.
Last night, George posted Cole's call of Chicago's game winning, OT goal and below, watch the same call with a camera focused on Bob Cole...
A amazing fact about Cole I read last night, he's called 144 OT games in his NHL career as a broadcaster.
from Helene Elliott of the LA Times,
“Just losing in overtime, that stings a lot, knowing we could have had it so many times,” said defenseman Drew Doughty, who was superb in playing a game-high 39:04 and probably got his longest rest when he spent 43 seconds in the penalty box before Chicago scored its first goal.
“We had the lead going into the third, which you can't ask for much more than that. And to give up a goal like that, kind of early in the third is kind of a dagger. We had opportunities to win. We just didn't do the job.”
The Blackhawks, 8-1 at home during the playoffs, were boosted by a four-assist game from Patrick Kane and a forceful performance by Saad as they prolonged their reign for at least one more game. Coach Joel Quenneville, perhaps borrowing a page from the Kings' playoff-rally playbook, reconfigured his lines to get more balance and got a dynamo in the trio of Saad, Andrew Shaw and Kane. Quenneville also emphasized the need to play the right way, to not open it up late in the game and allow the Kings to knife through their defense as happened in Games 2 and 3.
“We had more of a purpose,” Quenneville said.
When that purpose is extending your season, it's a powerful motivator.
The game starts just after 8:00pm ET and is on NBCSN, CBC and RDS.
With a win, the Los Angeles Kings will be in the Stanley Cup Final but Chicago may have something to say about that.
Expect the Blackhawks to take an early lead, settle in, then the Kings will make it a game and find a way to celebrate on Chicago's ice.
from Lance Pugmire of the LA Times,
“Right now I feel the pressure is all on them,” Kane said. “Obviously, being up in a 3-1 position, you never want to lose that in a series. We have a great opportunity tonight, playing in front of our home fans, to get another win and that’s all we’re looking at right now. We don’t feel any pressure in here and if there is any pressure, it’s probably all on the Kings.”
Blackhawks Coach Joel Quenneville agreed the pressure is “on L.A.”
A big part of the Blackhawks’ reasoning is linked to their rally from a 3-1 deficit in beating the Detroit Red Wings in seven games last year in the Western Conference semifinals.
“You look back against Detroit, we came in here, excited to be home, take advantage of the home crowd,” Quenneville said. “I don’t want to say loose, but let’s be excited about the opportunity. You’ve only got to win one game here.”
Forget the feel-good, “we’ve done it before” stuff. If the Blackhawks are going to get off the mat and back into this series, they need to pay attention to detail and commit to better defensive hockey. That means winning battles, having active sticks and making smart decisions with the puck.
And, most important, making the acreage in front of Crawford as inhospitable as possible for anyone in white. The Kings are going to get their tips, screens and rebounds. They’re just that good. But the Hawks have to dig deep and do what it takes to minimize them.
“We’re going to be a desperate hockey team [Wednesday] night,” Seabrook said. “We’ve got to come out, we’ve got to lay everything on the line or else our season’s over. I think we understand that.”
The Hawks have played more like an entitled team than a desperate one so far in this series. We’ll see if they have it in them.
-Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated where you can read more on how the Blackhawks can get back in the series with the Los Angeles Kings.
I planned to stay away from this story, but with some additional information now added, I guess it is newsworthy...
from Blake Schuster of the Chicago Tribune,
Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford has been accused of spraying a Los Angeles Kings fan with a water bottle during the final minutes of a Game 4 loss in the Western Conference finals Monday, according to a report from TMZ.com.
Clark Wong, a 27-year-old fan, claims Crawford sprayed him from the bench after being pulled for an extra attacker, causing an irritation to his eyes.
When contacted Wednesday by the Tribune, Wong declined to comment, saying he has received death threats and directing all questions to his lawyer.
A Los Angeles Police Department spokesman told CBSChicago.com that police are not investigating the matter.
from Cam Cole of the Vancouver Sun,
Maybe they're tired. Maybe their best players are whipped from the Olympics and the compressed schedule and too much hockey in too short a period.
Maybe they haven't got the bounces, while everything the other guys look at goes in the net.
Maybe they didn't think it was going to be this hard.
Or maybe the Los Angeles Kings are just the better team.
That last possibility is the one the Chicago Blackhawks won't be admitting until the final nail is in the proverbial coffin, which could happen as soon as Wednesday evening in the friendly confines of the Madhouse on Madison.
But it could be true. Because none of the other maybes add up.
Bounces? Not over a whole series.
"The thing that separates the Blackhawks from most teams in this league is the offensive difference-makers. You go back to the series against St. Louis, you go back to the series against the Minnesota Wild. We saw periods in those series, in those rounds that we saw in Game 2 (of Western Conference Final) in period three, we saw in period three in Game 3 in L.A. We saw those type of periods where the Blackhawks really struggled and had a tough time. The difference is the offensive difference-makers on L.A. They're a good team."
"Sometimes you've got to acknowledge and tip your helmet. These guys are big, they've got guys that can score. ... That to me is the difference in this series to this point is that when the Hawks have struggled, the Kings have capitalized, and there's something to that. They've been to the conference final three years in a row. There's something for that."
-Eddie Olczyk, TV color analyst for the Blackhawks and NBC Sports Group. More at CSNChicago.
Just over a minute long...
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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