Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
As they approach the midway point of the season, the Detroit Red Wings are trying to figure out if they have a good team or not, according to coach Mike Babcock.
Their record (20-9-9) indicates they are good, since they're only three points behind the Eastern Conference-leading Tampa Bay Lightning.
Now they just hope their schedule over the next two months doesn't prove otherwise.
"To be a good team it's about finding a way to look after the details every single day, putting your work habits before your skill," Babcock said. "If you do those things you have a chance to be good in this league."
The Red Wings will learn a lot about themselves during a stretch that sees them play 17 of 23 games on the road. It begins Saturday in Vancouver, the start of a three-game Western Canada trip.
"Bottom line is we don't get matchups, you don't control everything," Babcock said. "You got to take care of the puck better, you got to play defense better, you got to keep the emotion in the game better.
"Plus, we spend a ton of time at home. The wives are sick of us, so let's get on the road."
Normally George Malik of The Malik Report at KK does the vast majority of Wings related information, but this is too good to pass up.
from Bradley J. Fikes of U-T SanDiego,
Hockey legend Gordie Howe is making a dramatic recovery from a serious stroke thanks to stem cell therapy developed by San Diego-based Stemedica, his family says. Some medical scientists aren't so sure, however.
Howe, 86, suffered the stroke in late October, leaving him unable to walk and disoriented. He began improving within hours after receiving the stem cells in early December, said Dr. Murray Howe, a radiologist and one of Howe’s sons. For example, Howe insisted on walking to the bathroom, which he previously could not do.
"If I did not witness my father's astonishing response, I would not have believed it myself," Murray Howe said by email Thursday. "Our father had one foot in the grave on December 1. He could not walk, and was barely able to talk or eat."
"Our father's progress continues," the email continued. "Today, Christmas, I spoke with him on FaceTime. I asked him what Santa brought him. He said 'A headache.' I told him I was flying down to see him in a week. He said, 'Thanks for the warning.'"
continued and a must read in my opinion...
Don Cherry and Ron MacLean discussed a few topics including the future of Mike Babcock and hockey players are tough.
via WILX.com (Lansing, MI),
Screenshot just in case the story is, you know, deleted.
Re-live the madness as James Reimer single-handedly lifted a tired and slow-looking Toronto Maple Leafs squad to a 2-1 shootout win over the superior-looking Detroit Red Wings in a 41 save performance that dazzled.
How did Randy Carlyle feel about Reimer's performance? Watch below...
from Andrew Duffy of the Ottawa Citizen,
As a draft-eligible junior in Sweden, he was so little regarded that he was passed over by every team in the NHL. It wasn’t until he was 22 years old and a forward in the Swedish Elite League that the Ottawa Senators plucked him out of the sixth round, 133rd overall. He was — like everyone else chosen so late in the 1994 draft — a gamble, a long shot, a hunch.
“We liked what we saw, but he was a little undersized,” remembers then Senators GM Randy Sexton. “It was no slam dunk that he was going to play in the NHL.”
Alfredsson will retire Thursday with more NHL goals (444) and more points (1,157) than anyone else selected in that year’s draft.
Even more improbably, this quiet, private man from Gothenburg, Sweden will retire as the most beloved hockey player in the modern history of the Ottawa Senators: an icon in a city still coming to terms with its Alfie obsession.
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
The condition of hockey legend Gordie Howe took another turn for the worse on Monday when the former Detroit Red Wings was hospitalized after fears that he might have suffered another his second major stroke in a little more than five weeks.
"We are awaiting test results at this time to determine whether he has had a new stroke," son Murray, said in a text to M-Live. "He is responding and resting comfortably with family while in hospital currently. He is not in an ICU."
Johan Franzen's skate caught the face of Alex Burrows who did return to the bench after going for repairs.
from Keith Gave of Fox Sports Detroit,
Without question, this Wings team -- which was widely predicted to fail to make the playoffs for the first time after 23 straight appearances -- is one of the surprise teams in the NHL. But the most amazing thing is, they're doing it with a roster almost completely made up of what the front offices likes to call "pure Red Wings."
Heading into Sunday's game against visiting Vancouver, only two players on their 23-man roster -- Daniel Cleary and Stephen Weiss -- didn't begin their NHL careers with Detroit. And those two have watched more games from the press box this year than they've played, by a wide margin.
Eighteen players on this team were drafted by Detroit. Three others were undrafted free agents signed by the club: defensemen Danny DeKeyser and Brian Lashoff, and center Luke Glendening.
In other words, history seems to be repeating itself. That same build-through-the-draft mentality that founded the nucleus of those teams that started this playoff streak more than two decades ago is having a profound influence on a new generation of Red Wings charged with making sure it doesn't end on their watch.
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