Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
Minnesota Wild winger Derek Boogaard is out to inflict some pain, which is exactly what the six-foot-seven, 260-pounder did last year when he scored a hat-trick of sorts—knocking Oilers’ Ales Hemsky, Ladislav Smid and Marty Reasoner out of action for a spell.
All three were staggered by Boogaard hits—the Oilers would say with some malicious intent in the case of Hemsky—although Boogaard claims he was only out only to create mayhem and Hemsky got caught in his train tracks.
“Speaks to his effectiveness that we’re speaking about him right now,” said Oilers coach Craig MacTavish. “He hasn’t fought, either. You don’t want to play to his strengths, obviously. He’s a helluva fighter….”
From Jim Matheson at the Edmonton Journal,
“April 17. At 8:30 in the morning,” said [Rob] Daum, who was hired by the Oilers this summer when Craig Simpson left to work for CBC as a commenator on Hockey Night in Canada.
“I was told to bring two weeks worth of clothes. I was told I’d be working with the farm guys in practice,” said Daum. “I was back on the plane to Houston at 10:30 (a.m.).”
Daum realizes that NHL clubs can hire or fire whomever they want. He was glad for the chance to coach at the pro level after being with one of Canada’s best college teams, but didn’t expect to part company with the Wild the way he was. It was a shocker.
from the Edmonton Sun,
“This is fun, it’s refreshing,” said defenceman Steve Staios, adding that wasn’t always the case in previous seasons. “This team is adapting to the league, the way the game is played now.”
Stoll says it’s as much about the new-look Oilers as it is about the new NHL.
Nobody’s ever going to mistake this bunch for Gretzky, Messier, Kurri and Anderson, but GM Kevin Lowe added a mess of speed and talent in the likes of Andrew Cogliano, Geoff Sanderson, Robert Nilsson, Sam Gagner, Sheldon Souray and Joni Pitkanen.
They’ve got defencemen who can move the puck and forwards who can really move when they get it.
from the Courier-Post,
Tonight in Edmonton when the Flyers try to start the season 2-0 after Thursday’s 3-2 opening victory over Calgary, Pitkanen will face the Flyers for the first time in his career amid harsh criticism from the unlikeliest of sources: his former captain.
In a weekly column he is now writing for Montreal La Presse, former Flyers’ defenseman Eric Desjardins described Pitkanen as an immature player who refused help from his Flyers’ teammates.
“He has all the talent in the world, he’s strong as a horse and he’s as powerful a skater as Al Iafrate was, but he is also very immature,” Desjardins wrote.
From the CP,
The Edmonton Oilers have reportedly signed general manager Kevin Lowe to a multi-year contract extension.
According to a report on TSN’s website, the Oilers were expected to announce the signing at a media conference Saturday morning.
From Allan Maki at the Globe & Mail,
Not only that, Sanderson played against Kevin Lowe and Craig MacTavish, the Oilers’ general manager and head coach, respectively.
“He’s played for a lot of years,” Edmonton teammate Sheldon Souray. “It seems like every team I’ve played against, he’s on it.”
This is somewhat true since Sanderson is beginning his 17th season and has now played for eight teams, some of them twice. But given the number of youngsters the Oilers are breaking in this season, Sanderson could end up playing a key role on a team he grew up idolizing from his home in suburban St. Albert.
From Victor Chi at The Sporting News,
For the sake of the NHL, let’s hope that Ducks GM Brian Burke and his Oilers counterpart, Kevin Lowe, continue their verbal sniping.
The league went through the considerable expense of exporting the Ducks and Kings to England for the season openers in hopes of expanding its profile. But the Burke-Lowe exchanges already have generated oodles more buzz than the trans-Atlantic foray, and in today’s fragmented and multi-layered media landscape, relevance is king.
from the Edmonton Journal,
The tossing and turning started on Tuesday for Kyle Brodziak, and he has already played in 16 NHL games.
Andrew Cogliano didn’t know what to expect in the last hours leading up to his first NHL game. He didn’t know if he would be more jittery before he made the walk down the corridor, or during the anthem, or when he leapt over the boards for his first shift.
“This is what you dream of as a kid,” said Sam Gagner, the 18-year-old rookie forward with the freshly signed contract with the Edmonton Oilers.
Alan Ryder of the Globe and Mail has some advice for the coaches of the six Canadian teams…
I know you are new to Calgary. So I thought I might give you some insight into your Flames. You inherit a pretty good team, a playoff team. But the West is a tough conference, the Northwest is a tough division and it is important to get the most out of your guys to even ensure a playoff spot.
Something went wrong with the back end of the team last year. Goaltending is a fragile thing. Miikka Kiprusoff was not the same goalie as in prior seasons. I know this is a sensitive point, but he is no Roberto Luongo (who was the most valuable goalie in the NHL last season).
from Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun,
“When Doug Weight left I asked him who he thought should replace him as captain and he said Jason Smith,” said Oilers’ coach Craig MacTavish.
“I asked Jason, when he left, and he said Ethan Moreau.”
While MacTavish threw out some teasers about maybe having rotating captains and suggesting he was going to be very open-minded about the whole deal, he knew who his captain was going to be.
“It was a little bit of a no-brainer.”
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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