Kukla's Korner Hockey
From the CP via the Globe & Mail,
Now it’s for real. The first points of the 2007-‘08 NHL season are at stake Saturday when the Los Angeles Kings get first crack at taking down the Stanley Cup-champion Anaheim Ducks.
Practice for both teams seemed to have a little more edge on the eve of the NHL’s regular-season opener (CBC, noon ET).
“There’s a subtle feeling that comes over a team,” said Kings head coach Marc Crawford. “And you can see it in the players, there’s a little more focus in their eyes.
continued… (*regular season in North America starts next Wednesday)
from the LA Times,
By the time Bernier arrived at training camp, the Kings were eager to see what he could do and he was added to the goaltending mix with Dan Cloutier, Jason LaBarbera and Jean-Sebastien Aubin.
“I got to camp, there were three veteran goalies, so I said to tell myself, ‘Just play like I know and just worry about the game,’ ” Bernier said. “And that’s what I did.”
“You don’t want to get too overly excited, but he’s showing some very good poise in the net,” said Coach Marc Crawford, who last Friday sent Cloutier to Manchester (N.H.) of the American Hockey League. “For a goalie to play at this age, they need to have a real strong fundamental game.
“He has a sound package, especially with his skating. . . . He has a great foundation to his goaltending game.”
more (reg. req.)
From the Daily Mail,
The NHL will enter uncharted territory and return to its outdoor roots during a new season that begins on Saturday with the Anaheim Ducks starting their Stanley Cup defence on European ice.
The Ducks and Los Angeles Kings travel to London to play the first NHL regular season game in Europe as the NHL bids to gain a foothold in a market which has also attracted serious attention from the NFL and NBA.
“We’ve got to look at extending our brand outside of North America, whenever we can,” Ducks general manager Brian Burke said. “We think that to take regular season games to Europe is a milestone for our league. Is it ideal from a preparation standpoint? No. But I think when the league asks you to go, you go.”
from Pierre LeBrun of Sportsnet,
The Los Angeles Kings will definitely be the forgotten team here in London this week as the Anaheim Ducks parade the Stanley Cup around the English capital.
The question is whether they’re on the right track to one day duplicating Anaheim’s Cup triumph. It’s Year 2 of GM Dean Lombardi’s rebuilding job and what a massive facelift it’s been.
NHL.com’s Shawn P. Roarke is in London and providing daily updates about his experiences and the upcoming games. From his Day #3 installment:
Wednesday, NHL.com took an abbreviated double-decker bus tour of London. But the company couldn’t be beat as I joined the Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks and the Stanley Cup itself for a quick jaunt through the city.
We all climbed aboard a 30-year-old traditional red double-decker bus that is only used for special occasions. And, what could be more special than escorting the Ducks and the Stanley Cup on a sight-seeing tour?
SALZBURG, Austria - Anze Kopitar scored three goals Tuesday to help the Los Angeles Kings rally for a 7-6 win over Red Bull Salzburg in an exhibition tournament.
The Austrian champions went ahead 3-0 in the opening four minutes, but Mike Cammalleri, Ladislav Nagy and Kopitar evened the score within 10 minutes. Kopitar added another goal on a power play later in the period.
*you can also read more about the LA Kings in Austria at the team website
from Pierre LeBrun at Sportsnet,
The NHL gets hammered for many things, some of them deserved, but let’s applaud it for what’s happening this week in London, England.
The puck drops for the NHL’s 90th season with the Los Angeles Kings and defending Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks playing back-to-back games at the 02 Arena.
I will be on hand and I can’t wait.
A few months ago we mentioned Pierre would be part of the Sportsnet team this season. A welcomed addition I must say.
TSN has learned that the Los Angeles Kings have placed goaltender Dan Cloutier on waivers Friday.
added 3:41pm, from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Don’t read too much into the Los Angeles Kings’ decision put goaltender Dan Cloutier on waivers today, other than he’ll almost certainly start the season in the minors this season. Considering the NHL’s goalie glut (and the two years left on Cloutier’s contract at $3.1 million per season), there is virtually no chance that anyone would put in a claim for his rights at that price, at this time of year.
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
“There’s nothing I can do,” said Cloutier, of the catcalls that have punctuated most of his stay with the Kings. “I can’t control what they do. I can’t start to worry about what people are yelling or thinking of my play or what I’m doing. At the end of it, it’s going to make me better when I work my way out of it. I’ve been in that situation before, my first couple of years in Vancouver, and then I had a couple of successful seasons and it went away, so …
“In order to get it away, you need to put up some numbers and get some wins.”
more on the Kings…
from Eric Duhatschek at the Globe on Hockey Blog,
Call it a hunch, but after being around the team for a few days now, I’ve done a complete about-face on this issue. A month ago, I thought both Niedermayer and Selanne were done. At the moment, I’d say it’s more likely that they’ll play at some later date this year rather than retire, in the hopes of winning back-to-back championships.
more... Eric is in SoCal and has a bit on the Kings too, could a rookie goalie fit into the mix for the Kings?...
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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