Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Mike Heika at the Dallas Morning News,
Stars general manager Doug Armstrong said he needs to take some time and talk to some people before he makes any decisions about the future of his team. However, his words Wednesday spoke of a man frustrated by exiting the playoffs in the first round for the third consecutive season.
“We’ve been in the same spot three years in a row. Three years in a row, and tweaks aren’t really working,” Armstrong said. “It’s frustrating. I thought we had the pieces in place to make a push. It’s a little bit different this year than in years past. I thought our team was in better position to go deeper than maybe the last couple of years.”
continued… *more about who gets the blame in Dallas; plus Sergei Zubov gets abdominal surgery this week
from Taony Gallagher at the Vancouver Province,
In an era when Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Steve Yzerman and Joe Sakic defined the centre position, the greatness of Mike Modano has been grossly understated since he joined the Minnesota North Stars as the first overall pick in the 1988 NHL entry draft.
Compared to those guys, Modano played his whole career with a millstone around his neck, held back by club rules like the ones Hitchcock insisted upon: Never crisscross when on a rush. Wingers had to stay in their lanes and go up and down the ice in robotic fashion. And nowadays they can’t even go all the way up the ice unless the conditions are just right.
NEW YORK (April 22, 2007)—The Vancouver Canucks host the Dallas Stars in Game 7 of the Western Conference Quarterfinal Monday (9 p.m., ET, CBC, VERSUS, RDS). Since the NHL introduced the best-of-seven format in 1939, a total of 119 playoff series have gone to seven games and the home team has won 75 (63%).
This is the fourth consecutive series involving the Canucks to reach a seventh game. Vancouver defeated St. Louis in the 2003 Conference Quarterfinal, lost to Minnesota in the 2003 Conference Semifinal and lost the 2004 Conference Quarterfinal to Calgary. The Colorado Avalanche played a record five consecutive seven-game series, from 2001 through 2003.
The Stars are attempting to join a very exclusive group. In playoff history, 214 clubs have faced 3-1 series deficits and only 20 have come back to win (9.3%).
Overtime In Game 7
Of the 119 series in League playoff history that have gone to seven games, 29 have been decided in overtime. In the last such contest, the Calgary Flames defeated the Canucks at Vancouver on a goal by Martin Gelinas at 1:25 of the first overtime to claim the Western Conference Quarterfinal on April 19, 2004. Home teams have posted a 15-14 record in the 29 games, although road clubs are 10-4 since 1990.
from Mike Brophy & Edward Fraser of the Hockey News,
Two questions immediately spring to mind: Why the heck was Iginla on the ice in the first place? And what was Calgary coach Jim Playfair thinking? Maybe he should change his name to Playdirty.
The Flames are a very good hockey team, but they showed no class in losing on Saturday.
more and some Stars/Cahucks talk too
from the Dallas Morning News via the Santa Barbara News,
The national Stanley Cup ratings on Versus are down six percent from last season to 0.02, an average of 268,000 homes per game. During the regular season, NBC averaged 1.34 million homes for its regionalized coverage of the post-lockout NHL. That’s less than half the homes that Fox attracted for its NHL coverage a decade ago.
more on the Dallas Stars ratings…
from the CP via TSN,
“We feel good,’’ said captain Brenden Morrow, who scored the winning goal on a power play just 1:04 after Vancouver was called for too many men on the ice.
‘‘We’re going to try to not get too high. We tried not to get too low after being down 3-1. I think we have to play with a lot of emotion. We have to stay disciplined and keep our emotion in check and turn our energy into positive energy.’‘
Stu Barnes said the Stars can’t lose the desperation they showed to force a sixth game.
‘‘Anytime you have your back against the wall, and the other team has three wins, you’re desperate and you have to go out and play your best,’’ he said. ‘‘Hopefully we can do it again in Game 6.’‘
From Ben Kuzma of The Province,
The Canucks workhorse has seldom given up rebounds, let alone goals in a tight quarterfinal series with the Dallas Stars.
“They [Stars] probably have doubts and it plays in their heads, that’s for sure,” Burrows said Wednesday. “You could even see last game that they were trying back-door plays to try and get an easy goal.”
Luongo leads all playoff goalies with a .950 saves percentage and is second with a 1.49 goals-against average. Another strong outing tonight will propel the Canucks into the second round for the first time in four years and launch a campaign to have a street named after Luongo.
From AP via MSNBC,
The Vancouver Canucks know firsthand just how precarious their lead over the Dallas Stars might be.
In NHL playoff history, 210 teams have gone up 3-1 in a best-of-seven series. Only 20 of those teams have gone on to lose the series. Vancouver has been involved in four of those series, including twice in 2003, when they overcame flu-ridden St. Louis in the first round, then blew the big lead against Minnesota.
The Canucks know not to do any premature planning for the second round as their Western Conference quarterfinal series with the Stars shifts back to Vancouver for Game 5 Thursday night.
From the Dallas News,
Mike Modano’s frustration grows at the same rate as the Vancouver Canucks’ lead in this first-round series that appears to be almost over.
The Stars lost a 2-1 game to the Canucks on Tuesday to let Vancouver fly home with a 3-1 lead in the series.
The winning goal came off the stick of Trevor Linden, the second pick of the 1988 draft. That’s worth noting only because Modano, the first pick that year, didn’t register a single shot on goal in more than 24 minutes.
from the Star-Telegram,
Stars forward Mike Ribeiro participated in practice Monday, thus answering a big question after Game 3.
Yes, he is still on the team.
He just has been a no-show in this playoff series. And he hasn’t been alone in his disappearing act. Many of the Stars’ big-name, big-talent players have been reported missing against Vancouver—Ribeiro, Mike Modano on down.
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.
Email Paul anytime at email@example.com