Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Michael Russo at his blog on the Star-Tribune,
Pavol Demitra was injured nine minutes into the third when he strained his right hip on a shorthanded rush with Marian Gaborik. Demitra will be evaluated tomorrow and is day-to-day “for now,” said assistant GM Tom Lynn.
*At 7-0-1, the Wild is off to their best start in franchise history and remain the only team unbeaten in regulation this season.
From Kent Youngblood of the Star Tribune,
Morning skates on game days are a part of NHL tradition. But [Andy Murray] Murray isn’t a big fan, calling them one of the most overrated things in hockey. Murray rarely makes the skates mandatory. In St. Louis they’re called “necessary skates,” in that players who think it’s necessary will skate.
Turns out Wild coach Jacques Lemaire doesn’t entirely disagree.
“Myself, the morning skate is for the player that doesn’t play a lot,” Lemaire said. “Or the player that wants to shoot a couple pucks, players that want to feel their legs. That’s it.”
Lemaire runs a quick morning skate, and makes more of them optional as the season wears on. The players have varied views of them. Brian Rolston isn’t a big fan; Pavol Demitra loves to get in his morning skate.
from Kevin Allen’s blog at USA TODAY,
When Brian Rolston’s family heard that the Minnesota Wild were offering players a mother-son NHL road trip this season they jokingly wondered whether coach Jacques Lemaire understood that his mother, Joyce, might view that as an invitation to do some work as an assistant coach.
“She has a lot of jam,” jokes Brian’s brother, Ron, who is a coach for the U.S. National Development team. “We were afraid that she was going to be telling Jacques and the players how to play.”
thanks to a KK member for the pointer…
From John Shipley at the Pioneer Press,
Yes, this is the same Manny Fernandez who ranks dead last among NHL goalies in goals-against average (5.00) and save percentage (.796), and once again is splitting time with another goaltender.
Fernandez is 1-1 in two starts. In three starts, partner/backup Tim Thomas ranks second in the NHL with a 1.34 GAA and .957 save percentage, right behind the Wild’s Nik Backstrom (1.00, .959) - the guy who pushed Fernandez out of Minnesota after seven seasons.
So, for Fernandez, it has been a case of here we go again.
“We’re splitting time for now,” he said. “You know, it’s the same questions and the same answers as it’s always been. We don’t make the rules, and we don’t make the decisions.”
from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
...Again, we’re talking about Martin Skoula here.
Lemaire simply loves him, as displayed by Skoula’s ice time in critical situations. Late in tight games, one constant will be Skoula ... on the ice ... every other shift.
Lemaire has complete faith in him, which is why Lemaire asked Risebrough three times at June’s NHL draft, “What’s going on with Skoula?“He’s the only guy he cared about,” said Risebrough, who then got on the horn and re-signed the veteran to a two-year contract.
From John Shipley at the Pioneer Press,
Roman Voloshenko’s stint as a Wild prospect appears over after he quit the club’s top minor league team to play in Russia.
“I told him, ‘I think if you go home, you’ll never play in the NHL,’ ” Wild general manager Doug Risebrough said Saturday.
Voloshenko was the Wild’s second-round pick in the 2004 entry draft, 42nd overall. A 6-foot-1, 200-pound wing, he made a splash in his debut with the Houston Aeros, earning 33 goals among 60 points in 69 games in 2005-06.
from the AP via the West Central Tribune,
The mothers of 17 Wild players proudly accompanied their sons as the group left Minnesota on Friday for three games on the West Coast. Last season, the team invited the fathers on a trip.
“She’s very excited. Last year, when the dads got to go, she was very jealous right from the get-go,” said right wing Mark Parrish of his mom, Barb.
The mothers gathered for photos at the arena in the morning before the plane left for Phoenix, where the Wild face the Coyotes on Saturday night.
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 Michael Russo at the Star Tribune,
Attention, fantasy hockey owners: Jacques Lemaire has a red-hot tip for you.
Pick up Eric Belanger, and fast.
“When we got him, I felt that he’s going to get 20 goals,” the Wild coach said. “Now, I feel he’s going to get 80 points. Playing on the power play like he does, playing on a pretty good line, he’ll get some points.
from the Star-Tribune,
In an e-mail to and subsequent phone interview with the Star Tribune on Sunday, former Gophers winger Tyler Hirsch accused the Wild of “misrepresenting the truth” and being “unethical” after the team announced last week that he signed a contract with the Houston Aeros, its American Hockey League affiliate….
According to Hirsch on Sunday, “I have neither verbally committed to or signed anything resembling a contract with the Minnesota Wild or their minor-league affiliates. I have never laid eyes on a would-be contract and am currently a free agent.”
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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