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Category: Minnesota-Wild

Evening Line

“I’d have been suspended indefinitely.  There’s no doubt that all he was trying to do was hurt me.”

-Cal Clutterbuck of the Minnesota Wild on the elbow he took from Sergei Gonchar of the Pittsburgh Penguins.  More from Clutterbuck by Michael Russo of the Star Tribune.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: cal+clutterbuck, sergei+gonchar

Gonchar’s Elbow On Clutterbuck Last Night

via Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,

The Wild fans got Cal Clutterbuck’s back by booing Pittsburgh’s Sergei Gonchar the rest of Monday’s game, but Clutterbuck was steaming after the Wild’s 4-3 victory because Gonchar took a flying elbow at his head in the third period.

Gonchar received a five-minute major for elbowing, although the Wild didn’t score on the power play.

“He better hope he retires at the end of the year, I’ll tell you that,” Clutterbuck said, a cut on the bridge of his nose. “Somebody’s going to hurt him before the end of the year. Someone will. It’s not going to be me, but someone will.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: cal+clutterbuck, sergei+gonchar

Sykora Treatment Questioned

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

He was told this morning he wasn’t playing but that he still had to skate warmups. James Sheppard did not have to skate warmups. Somebody asked me on Twitter during warmups if he was playing because he was warming up, and I replied, “No. They treat him like a rookie.”

Whether that was appropriate of me to say or not, I said it and I said it because I know the veteran of five Stanley Cup Finals and 900-plus regular season games was told that he had to skate warmups even though there was no intention of playing him.

Later in the game tonight, agent Allan Walsh retweeted my tweet. Then he tweeted, “No, the coach is treating Sykora with less respect than a rookie.” and “Sykora is a healthy scratch for the 2nd game in a row.”

I talked to Allan after the game because Twitter’s obviously public and I couldn’t ignore it, but he didn’t want to comment further publicly.

read on for talk on the Wild win over the Blackhawks last night…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: petr+sykora

Decisions Ahead For The Wild

from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,

Kim Johnsson or Marek Zidlicky? Or both?

Owen Nolan or Eric Belanger? Derek Boogaard’s iron fists?

As the Wild works to make the playoffs this second half, General Manager Chuck Fletcher and his staff will be hard at work off the ice.

Over the next two months, the Wild faces some enormous decisions that will shape the future of the franchise.

Minnesota has nine potential unrestricted free agents (the five aforementioned players and Petr Sykora, Shane Hnidy, Andrew Ebbett and John Scott). It must determine which players to retain and then determine if it can afford to do so.

continued

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

Lemaire Returns To Minnesota

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

First things first, Lemaire held Devils practice in Mendota Heights this afternoon, and afterward came back to the X with the Devils to change back into his street clothes. Lemaire got misty-eyed a bit about his return, and when I pointed that out to him, he actually had to walk off with his eyes clearly welled. Lemaire’s always a class act, and it was a pleasure covering him.

I’ve covered a ton of coaches in this league (I covered Florida), and no offense to the others, but I learned the most about the sport from Lemaire. Our working relationship took awhile to develop as he clearly tried to feel me out at the start and didn’t always appreciate my interrogations and second-guessing, but there was a lot of mutual respect by the end. Lemaire’s got all the time in the world for people who 1) know the game; and 2) have a passion for the game.

And as a quote, nobody was better. Just a funny, funny quote.

more

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

Kobasew Out With Sprained MCL

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

According to sources, the Wild will be without right wing Chuck Kobasew for four to six weeks with a sprained MCL. There’s also some damage to the ACL, but the swelling needs to decrease before the extent is determined. Kobasew’s scored four goals and five assists in 27 games since being acquired from Boston.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: chuck+kobasew

Equipment Still An Issue For Wild

from Bruce Brothers of the Pioneer Press,

Tony DaCosta stood in the middle of the Wild’s dressing room Sunday morning at the Xcel Energy Center, holding an ice skate in each hand and exchanging wisecracks with players.

In the middle of packing the team’s gear for its first road trip since fire destroyed more than two-thirds of it on Dec. 18 in Ottawa, DaCosta seemed in his usual good mood; the Wild had won two straight games, and everything appeared to be back to normal.

DaCosta put the skates down and shook his head.

“We’re far from back to normal,” he said. “We’re about 50 percent.”

DaCosta believes a blowtorch ignited in the back of the Ottawa Senators’ equipment truck during the short drive from the Kanata Recreation Centre, where the Wild practiced, to Scotiabank Place, where the Senators defeated the Wild 4-1 on Dec. 19.

He estimated damages at about $100,000.

continued

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

Wild Must Adjust To New Equipment Quickly

from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,

There is no doubt this will be one of the most unique days in Wild history. Players are expected to arrive at the arena early to try to piece together equipment for the game.

“I thought it was a joke, but it’s not,” said winger Martin Havlat, who says all of his equipment was destroyed. “This is not going to be easy to play.”

There are two areas of concern: comfort and safety.

Hockey is one sport where broken-in and properly fitted equipment is critical. Players are notoriously fussy about their gear, and if it doesn’t feel right, players typically don’t play right. Also, helmets and knee braces must be custom fit.

Defensemen, such as shot-blocking specialist Greg Zanon, have modified their equipment over several years in order to protect certain places. Center Eric Belanger wears a custom-made brace for his right foot after breaking it two seasons ago.

more

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

Wild Equipment Bus Burns

via the Twitter of Bob McKenzie,

Minnesota Wild equipment van was in an accident, caught fire and much of the Wild players’ equipment has been burned so badly it’s toast.

No injuries in the accident, apparently, but if u know anything about NHL players and equipment, especially skates, players are apoplectic.

The Wild play tomorrow in Ottawa.

added 4:33pm, Follow Michael Russo’s Twitter too,

They opened up and everything was on fire. Nobody knows why. But team is in scramble mode as it tries to determine what was destroyed.

added 5:05pm, Pics of the burned equipment via Dean Molberg.

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

Boogaard’s Reputation

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

I’ll be doing my notebook lead on the two penalties called on Derek Boogaard Saturday night in Vancouver. The Hockey Night in Canada folks apparently went after referee Brad Watson pretty good, and Watson certainly appeared to call Boogaard with “reputation” calls.

I don’t know if Boogaard really angered Watson, or perhaps the ref wanted to showboat for the loud Vancouver faithful, but it was beyond belief how animated Watson got after the two penalties he called on Boogaard. He vivaciously waved Boogaard to the box on both calls like the Boogeyman had just committed murder—one after Darcy Hordichuk twice punched Boogaard in the face and Boogaard retaliated for the lone call and once when Boogaard fell (he may have embellished, but he swears he slipped because he was on one skate when bumped) after the Canucks committed the definition of textbook interference (fencing off) at the blue line. I thought it was Willie Mitchell, but Boogaard says it was Kevin Bieksa.

Regardless, Todd Richards couldn’t use him again—not because of Boogaard, but because he didn’t trust Watson.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, NHL Talk, NHL Officiating, | 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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