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Category: Minnesota-Wild

Andrew Brunette A Fit In Vancouver

from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,

By now, the names in play at the trade deadline are fairly well known to most puckheads, but there’s one development which bears monitoring. The Minnesota Wild are currently in the thick of the Western Conference playoff battle but if they fall off in the next week, they have five pending UFAs -Andrew Brunette, Antti Mietinen, John Madden, Chuck Kobasew and Jose Theodore -who could make things very interesting

Canucks GM Mike Gillis has indicated he isn’t planning anything dramatic but if there’s one player he should make an exception for it’s Brunette. He’s a proven playoff performer, has character in spades and he’d give the Canucks options among the top-nine forwards and the power play.

Admittedly, our perception has been altered by Brunette’s remarkable ability to transform into Mike Bossy when he plays against the Canucks. But that move would make sense on a number of levels.

more hockey notes…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: andrew+brunette

Mikko Koivu Takes A Shot Off His Left Hand

via Michael Russo tweets,

Koivu (upper body) will not return. He blocked a Todd Marchant shot with his left hand

I’ll get you Mikko Koivu update if they disclose, but already being told by somebody in the know it’s not good

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikko+koivu

Wild Finding Success

from Michael Russo of the StarTribune,

From the moment Richards took over in June 2009, the talking points were up-tempo, high-flying hockey; activate the defense; play on your toes, not your heels.

Today, a quality forecheck still is the name of the game, but it’s the Wild’s commitment to being solid defensively that has created success.

This is not a return to Lemaire “defensively sound,” where the Wild trapped up the middle and waited for opponents’ mistakes.

This is about simplifying the defensive zone. It’s about quick retrievals and outlets. It’s about an in-your-face, box-out mentality. And it’s about players feeling comfortable chipping the puck out if they’re in trouble.

In turn, the Wild is spending less time in its own end, always the key to success in hockey.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Wild Keep Winning

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

One-sided contest here tonight as the Wild beat St. Louis for the second straight night. The Wild set the tone early by storming out of the gate, then spent the night winning battles, playing with a fast pace and limiting the Blues’ offensive chances during another solid all-around effort.

The Wild’s 9-2 in the past 11, has won four in a row at home, has 13 wins since Jan. 2 (tied with Philly for most in the NHL) and jumped over Calgary, which lost to Vancouver, to move into 8th in the West.

The Wild has three games in hand on Calgary, but Los Angeles and Chicago are both on the Wild’s tail. In front, the Wild’s one point behind San Jose and Anaheim and two points behind Nashville and Phoenix. The Wild has one or two games in hand on all four of those teams, meaning the Wild’s in very good shape as long as it keeps winning.

Very impressive win tonight in front of the largest crowd of the season.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Félicitations Sur 600 Victoires Jacques Lemaire

via Tom Gulitti tweet,

Lemaire on 600th: “A coach is always as good as the players are and I’ve been fortunate to work with good people around me all through my career and I thank them because they were a part of it, all the players that played hard.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, Montreal Canadiens, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jacques+lemaire

Wild Bag Skate Turned The Season Around

from Jim Souhan of the Star-Tribune,

On Oct. 17, Todd Richards forced his team to do battle drills, then ordered a “bag skate’’—endless sprints and laps. Several players said it was one of the toughest practices of their lives. Things changed.

Two interesting things have happened during this suddenly promising Wild season:

• The Wild has begun looking like a well-coached team.

• The Wild has begun looking like a well-coached team, and Todd Richards is still standing behind the bench.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Surprise Guests For Wild Rookie Dinner

from Michael Russo of the StarTribune,

No matter what Cody Almond accomplishes in his hockey career, the Wild rookie always will consider singing for Charles Barkley and Michael Strahan “icing on the cake.”

Last Sunday at the Chicago Cut Steakhouse, Barkley, the former NBA great-turned-TNT commentator, and Strahan, the former New York Giants star defensive end-turned-Fox commentator, were dining at the same restaurant the Wild was having its rookie dinner.

Wild center John Madden used to live in the same neighborhood as Strahan when Madden played for the Devils and Strahan for the Giants, so next thing you know, “Sir Charles” and the NFL’s single-season sacks record-holder entered the room to, as defenseman Nick Schultz said, “hold court for two hours.”

Barkley and Strahan told stories, especially about past rookie dinners during their careers. Rookie dinners are a pro sports tradition where the rookies buy the team dinner.

“Suddenly, Charles started getting all these crazy ideas in his head. I was just like, ‘Oh man, here we go,’” rookie defenseman Jared Spurgeon said.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: charles+barkley, michael+strahan

Recovering From A Concussion

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

A view from the front lines of the NHL’s concussion debate must, of necessity, include a chat with the Minnesota Wild’s Pierre-Marc Bouchard, who missed a staggering 104 games over parts of two seasons recovering from a pair of debilitating, career-threatening concussions.

Bouchard never ever thought he would be out as long he was, which goes to the heart of the concussion conundrum. At the time the injuries occur, the players themselves are in the worst position to self-diagnose because they are, after all, suffering from a brain injury that impairs judgment.

“Concussions are really tricky,” Bouchard was saying, before the Wild clobbered Calgary 6-0 to sweep the two Alberta teams and unexpectedly move into contention for a playoff berth in the Western Conference.

Bouchard is scoring again, but freely acknowledges that even 24 games into his return, he has not got his old form back.

“To be honest, I don’t think it’s there, 100 per cent yet,” said Bouchard. “I was out for so long. Some games, I feel my game is there. Sometimes, I know there’s part of my game that can still be better - that what I used to do in the past, I can be better doing. It’s been okay. There are good things and bad things I do in the game, but I think I’m heading in the right direction.”

continued plus other NHL topics including Wings, Blues and Sharks…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pierre-marc+bouchard

Picking an All-Star Team, Especially this Year, Isn’t Easy but, Hell, I’ll Do it Again Anyway

It’s never a cinch to select the rosters for an All-Star game in any sport and, with a bizarre “fantasy draft” format for this year’s NHL midseason showcase and the game’s first six participants already selected via fan balloting, filling out this season’s All-Star pool of 42 has some added challenge to it, to say the least.

For starters, dividing things by conference is no longer a provision, as the remaining 36 All-Stars named today will go into said pool along with the elected top-six for a field of 42. With that in mind, and factoring in at least one representative for every member club, there will be notable omissions, no matter how this list is put together, or by whom.

Nevertheless, always one to face a challenge head-on, in keeping with my annual tradition (whether an All-Star game has been played or not), I’ve put together my own list of mid-season honorees, complete with a set of 12 rookies to be featured in the skills competition at All-Star Weekend, as the NHL Hockey Operations department will do later today.

(For clarity’s sake, I’ve already accounted for the fan selections.)

Deep breaths, everyone. Here goes nothing, with a few explanations afterwards…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Atlanta Thrashers, d, Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres, Calgary Flames, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Colorado Avalanche, Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, Los Angeles Kings, Minnesota Wild, Montreal Canadiens, Nashville Predators, New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Ottawa Senators, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins, San Jose Sharks, St. Louis Blues, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: all-star+game

Video- Let’s Summarize The Kind Of Year The Devils Have Had

Game winning goal tonight…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com


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