Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,
I was talking it over with some reporter brethren after the Avs’ sulfurous effort against the Flames, and the question crossed my head - was this the worst game I’d ever seen the Avs play?
Quite possibly, it was. I know there have been bigger blowout losses over the years, but this might have been the worst wire-to-wire performance this team has ever played since moving to Denver.
The inability to make even the most rudimentary plays was stunning. How many times did an Av have the puck on his stick in his own zone, only to hand it right back to a Flame, usually at the points?
DENVER – The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that it has signed 22-year-old center Paul Stastny to a five-year contract extension beginning with the 2009-2010 season.
“Paul has clearly established himself as one of the bright young stars emerging in our game today,” said Avalanche Executive Vice President & General Manager Francois Giguere. “At a young age, he’s demonstrated tremendous skill, vision and composure on the ice and is recognized as one of the most complete players in our league.
“We’re pleased that Paul will remain with the Colorado Avalanche franchise long-term. This is another sign of our ownership’s commitment to winning.”
added 9:07pm, CBC reporting deal is for $33M.
from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,
From the never-ending-Peter-Forsberg-medical-news-department: I heard from a Swedish source that our beloved Foppa had another foot surgery a few days ago. I’ll get more definitive word on this soon hopefully, but that’s what I’m hearing.
more plus a look at the back issue of Joe Sakic…
From the Edmonton Oilers:
General Manager Steve Tambellini announced today that the Edmonton Oilers have claimed forward Jesse Boulerice off waivers from the Colorado Avalanche and have placed left winger Steve MacIntyre on the NHL Injured Reserve List. [...]
Boulerice has played 170 NHL games with Philadelphia, Carolina and St. Louis, scoring 8-2-10 with 333 penalty minutes. He spent his first full season in the NHL with Carolina in 2002-03 and played a career-high 76 games with the Hurricanes in 2003-04.
via the Rocky Mountain News,
Avalanche captain Joe Sakic didn’t practice today because of a sore back and is undergoing tests to determine how serious the problem is. He played the first period Saturday against Nashville after missing Thursday’s game with Minnesota. Hoping to get some sort of results later today.
Meanwhile, forward Scott Parker’s contract with the Avalanche has been terminated by the team. The “Sheriff” was assigned to the Lake Erie Monsters in the American Hockey League on Oct. 17 after being activated from the injured list—he had a concussion—but he never reported.
The Avalanche said he has become an unrestricted free agent. I’ve been trying to get in contact with his agent and with the NHL Players Association to get their take on the situation.
added 7:24pm, from the Rocky Mountain News,
The good news for the Avalanche and Joe Sakic is that no structural damage was found today during tests on the captain’s back.
Sakic is being listed as day to day. He’ll be evaluated on a daily basis, so it isn’t known if he’ll be able to play Wednesday in Vancouver.
more on the Avs…
via Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,
I think there’s some tire-kicking going around the league right now concerning Avs defenseman Brett Clark. In fact, I’m sure of it.
Brett Clark to Montreal for goalie Jaroslav Halak is one deal I’ve heard being kicked around right now. Like Peter Budaj, Halak is a Slovak. He has also been under the tutelage of Canadiens goalie instructor Roland Melanson, who has been turning out many fine goalies the last few years.
According to Adrian Dater at All Things Avs:
Darcy Tucker escaped suspension. From my league sources, Tucker will not be suspended for his clipping incident against Minnesota’s Nick Schultz Thursday night.
from Russo’s Rants,
Late in the second period, Tucker and defenseman Nick Schultz clashed deep in the Wild’s zone. After the pushing match, the two lined up next to each other and Tucker began screaming at him as the Wild was on a penalty kill. Schultz was called off the ice on a line change and as he skated by, Tucker continued barking at him.
Then, 6:33 into the third, in a despicable act but one he’s done often in his career, Tucker came in way late on Schultz, bent down and went right for the knees. He was called for clipping.
I got Schultz alone in the locker room, and he was still fuming. Here’s his comments:
“My concern is at the end of the second, he tells me he’s going to come and take out my knees, and then he actually does it. It says everything you need to know about that guy.
from Terry Frei of All Things Colorado Sports at the Denver Post,
Do I think the Avalanche should be considering taking measures to upgrade in goal? Absolutely. And they should be considering that possibility, whether it’s the drastic step of using all the available cap space (and a little more) to land Khabibulin or anything else. (Budaj to Chicago as Huet’s backup to clear the cap room and give Chicago a No. 2? Well, that would make sense except for the fact that Budaj would be playing for Joel Quenneville, which raises all sorts of issues.)
But for now, Budaj’s far from the only problem.
from Terry Frei of the Denver Post,
This is a mediocre team looking more and more every night as if it is confirming what seemed to be a significant possibility as the season opened: The Avs often seem to be misconstructed, with an overabundance of blue-collar types for what so many hoped would be a return to up-tempo hockey; and the front office made misjudgments about some of its young players, including when discussing the state of the roster with Joel Quenneville before he was handed his walking papers.
The six-man defensive corps, considered the strength of the team going into the season, has remained constant through the first 11 games — with no man games lost to injury and without veteran Daniel Tjarnqvist cracking the lineup for even one game. But the group collectively has been nothing more than ordinary, and maybe even worse.
And up front, right now, it’s a mess.
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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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