Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
The rivalry has built throughout the years in part because Minnesota has played Colorado in three of its four all-time playoff berths. One of the great dramas is the disdain Landeskog and the Wild’s Mikko Koivu, Landeskog’s captain counterpart, have for each other. They battle intensely every game, and in the heat of the moment last weekend, Landeskog swiped at Koivu from bench to bench to earn a $5,000 fine.
“Five grand, he should have hit him. Make it worth it at least,” Avalanche coach Patrick Roy, laughing, joked.
Every Wild-Avs game, there are skirmishes, big runs and dirty hits, and the Avalanche still is upset that now-injured Matt Cooke knocked defenseman Tyson Barrie out of last year’s playoffs with a knee-on-knee hit that earned Cooke a seven-game suspension.
After last Saturday’s game, Wild coach Mike Yeo called what McLeod did to Granlund “garbage.” Friday, Roy countered, “To me, garbage is what Cooke did to Barrie.”
added 5:08pm, below there is more...
added 5:28pm, Russo remarks now added below too...
from Terry Frei of The Denver Post,
Well, what do you know? ... Ryan O'Reilly still is here.
Absolutely, the Avalanche listened to or initiated offers involving him in the weeks leading up to the Monday trading deadline, primarily seeking an imposing, first-rate defenseman to eventually play with Erik Johnson or to anchor the second pairing.
There's a huge leap to take between discussion and consummating a deal, and others considered part of that Avalanche "core" undoubtedly also were at least mentioned at one point or another. That's all justifiable and prudent within the "anything to improve this team" parameters any general manager should follow.
The Avalanche's inertia was glaring, yes. But here's what was underplayed in much of the O'Reilly speculation. While he's a heady two-way forward, among the league's most crafty, and he broke out offensively last season with 28 goals, mostly playing on the wing, his salary benchmark at this point is daunting. He is scheduled to make $6.25 million next season in the second year of the two-year, $12 million deal he reached with the Avalanche on the verge of an arbitration heading last summer.
via the Colorado Avalanche,
The Colorado Avalanche announced this morning that forward Nathan MacKinnon will miss 6-8 weeks with a fractured foot.
MacKinnon, 19, has yet to miss a game with the Avalanche since being drafted first-overall at the 2013 NHL Draft. He has 38 points (14 goals, 24 assists) through 64 games this season, including five goals in his last five games and nine points in his past 10 contests.
He scored his first NHL hat trick on Feb. 22 against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
NEW YORK (March 3, 2015) -- Colorado Avalanche forwards Cody McLeod and Gabriel Landeskog each have been fined the maximum amounts allowable under the Collective Bargaining Agreement for their respective actions during the final seconds of NHL Game No. 930 in Denver on Saturday, February 28, the National Hockey League’s Department of Player Safety announced today.
McLeod has been fined $3,091.40 for entering the game on a legal line change for the purpose of starting an altercation with 8.1 seconds remaining in regulation. Directly off a face-off at center ice, McLeod launched into a bodycheck against Minnesota center Mikael Granlund and then engaged in a fight with Wild forward Charlie Coyle. McLeod was assessed a minor penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct, a major penalty for fighting and a misconduct penalty.
Landeskog has been fined $5,000 for throwing a punch at Minnesota forward Mikko Koivu while both players were on their respective benches with 3.3 seconds remaining in regulation. Landeskog was assessed a misconduct penalty.
The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
Watch the altercations below...
from Michael Russo of Russo's Rants,
Mayhem in Denver as the Wild defeated the Colorado Avalanche 3-1 to gain a three-point cushion on eighth and move a point from Winnipeg.
In a nasty, physical, action-packed, playoff-like affair, the Avalanche tried to run the Wild out of the building.
“I’d probably be frustrated too if we played a team and hadn’t scored on them in four games except on a dump-in,” Zach Parise said, grinning (you’ll understand what he’s referring to in a few paragraphs). “They’re taking their frustration out on us. We played a good game in spite of what they were trying to do.”
Twelve periods and 240 minutes of hockey now this season, and the only goal the Avalanche has scored against the Wild in four losses (outscored 12-1) arguably should have been wiped out by referees Chris Rooney and Dean Morton tonight.
Just 1:32 into the second period, a Maxime Talbot dump-in ricocheted awkwardly off the glass, into the crease and pinned under Devan Dubnyk’s right pad. Cody McLeod came charging in trying to jam at the puck and pushed Dubnyk over the goal line.
The ref blew the play down signaling no goal. But they went to review, and the NHL Situation Room correctly determined the puck lodged under Dubnyk’s pad when it went over the line. Tying goal.
However, Dubnyk’s pad only went over the line because McLeod pushed him over the line. Before it got to video review, Rooney and Morton probably should have disallowed the goal. That part of this was not reviewable.
continued inlcuding Cocy McLeod being Cody McLeod...
Watch the disputed goal below...
Brad Stuart with a soft dump-in... Corey Craford does the rest.
from Terry Frei of the Denver Post,
With the March 2 trading deadline approaching, the Avalanche could become a seller, unloading spare-part types who could help playoff-bound teams in the short term, but also still could attempt to make a major deal to land a top pair-type defenseman.
Ryan O'Reilly still is the most likely to be dangled as a major element in a significant deal, but I'll repeat that the organizational must be open-minded in searching out anything that could make this team better — in the continuing "process" to chase after the Stanley Cup.
Patrick Roy has spoken often of that "process," a long-range plan to get the Avalanche among the elite and keep it there. But the Avalanche coach also has done that while emphasizing not thinking too far ahead in the season.
"We try to be even keel," he said again Sunday. "Obviously, the clock is ticking and there's an urgency of winning games."
from Mike Chambers of All Things Avs,
Until Sunday, when a solid first period on the road led to a mess of a second and Winnipeg taking a 4-1 lead, I thought the Avs would stand pat with their young forwards and work free agency in July with nearly $10 million in expiring contracts. But with eight shutout losses — already seven more than last season — and the horrid power play, the Avs might want to reevaluate their offensive chemistry.
The offense doesn’t click, now 24th in the 30-team NHL at 2.41 goals per game, and every forward but Daniel Briere is under contract next season. Do you just hope these talented forwards get it going next season? Or do you trade one or two for a youngster or two on the rise and mix up chemistry? The playoff teams aren’t going to trade their best players, but certainly, they’ll trade for a player they need and give up a good player and a prospect.
Too many names and too many scenarios to list here; I’m not going to create rumors by throwing out names. Obviously, Ryan O’Reilly is a very attractive player and his name continually surfaces in trade talks, but I would think the Avs will listen to any offer for any player. At this point, nobody seems untouchable.
from Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post,
On his home ice, surrounded by thousands of Detroit fans that covered the Pepsi Center in a sea of red, young Avalanche star Nathan MacKinnon dropped his gloves and fought for the franchise's lost glory.
Less than a minute after the opening faceoff, there was MacKinnon taking punches in the face from Red Wings defenseman Jonathan Ericsson. Ericsson had run MacKinnon roughshod into the boards, and the 19-year-old Colorado forward was not about to be bullied.
"It was in the heat of the moment, for sure," MacKinnon told me Thursday, admitting that he decided on fisticuffs to settle the dispute. "Right now, I don't feel like fighting anybody. But, it was a big game, and I asked him to fight. He said yes. It was fun."
MacKinnon did what hockey players do: He traded fists to prove his manhood. MacKinnon battled in the grand tradition of the blood feud between the Avalanche and Red Wings....
As the arena shook with an approving roar from a crowd with a lust for blood, here's what struck me: Is a teenager really the toughest man that Roy has got to stand up for team pride? And is MacKinnon really the best shot the Avalanche has of overcoming a wretched start to kick in the back door to the playoffs?
Watch the fight below...
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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