Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jim Souhan of the Star-Tribune,
This was a big series for Gabby. He’s a year from free agency. This postseason could have been the crucible in which he proved himself irreplaceable.
Instead, through five games, he’s disappeared as surely as Alex Rodriguez in October.
When a talented player becomes frustrated, the operative phrase in hockey is, “He’s squeezing the stick too tight.”
It’s a wonder Gaborik is left with anything more than sawdust (or melted graphite) by the end of each shift.
from Woody Paige of the Denver Post,
In the realm of Jose Theodore, time, speed and distance have no relevance. He is on his own, in the moment, in his area of interest. There are no sounds, no distractions, no blurs, no vague impressions.
It’s myspace.net, Theodore believes. It belongs to him and nobody else.
“If you are focused properly,” Jose Theodore says, “you don’t see time go by.”
And pucks don’t go past him.
The Avalanche goalie has played brilliantly in this playoff series with Minnesota. But, on Thursday night, Theodore was a virtuoso performer of the highest order.
From Judd Zulgad at the Star Tribune,
Anyone who tuned into KSTC’s telecast of the Wild playoff game Monday night at Colorado likely came away believing Marc Joannette and Tim Peel are among the NHL’s most incompetent referees.
How could viewers have any other impression after listening to Wild play-by-play man Dan Terhaar and analyst Mike Greenlay? The latter spent far too much time criticizing the officials and the former did nothing to rein him in during the Wild’s 3-2 overtime victory.
continued… with a look at coverage through the first 3 games of the series.
from Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post,
Any coach should have the authority on his bench to tell his players to take a loss like men, go home with their dignity intact and use the scoreboard to seek vengeance in the next game.
But what do I know? I don’t live in the state of hockey, where die-hard Minnesota fans are still sore after the Wild got beat up by Anaheim in the playoffs a year ago.
In response, Lemaire assembled the biggest cast of desperadoes and bushwhackers seen since “Blazing Saddles” hit movie theaters in 1974.
But here in Colorado, we know all too well how stupid violence in the game can result in a broken neck.
from Patrick Reusse of the Star-Tribune,
Did you ever feel cheated watching the Wild players in the spring of ‘03? Not once, not even when they couldn’t get a puck past Anaheim goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere to save their lives.
On Tuesday, the Wild players cheated their coach, and cheated the masses in Minnesota who stayed up in anticipation of another taut, terrific hockey game.
The Avalanche came out flying and the Wild retreated. Mikko Koivu was one exception to that, but he didn’t have much company.
from Adrian Dater at All Things Avs,
As a couple of the Minnesota writers have already noted tonight, Mark Kiszla’s “Ugly Betty” column wasn’t so off the mark, was it? What kind of hockey do you call that tonight, Wild fans? Are you denying your team gooned it up tonight, and only cost themselves even more doing that?
I’m going to stay out of the media fracas, but knowing Kiszla, I can guarantee he’s laughing pretty hard right now at how the game turned out.
from Russo’s Rants,
I take it back. Kiszla was right.
Talk about an ugly hockey game full of silliness. I never thought this would end. The Wild got so chippy out there, Peter Forsberg didn’t leave the bench in the third to protect him.
The Wild took a team-playoff-record 111 penalty minutes. Derek Boogaard played 2:03 and got 24 minutes of penalties. Stephane Veilleux, running around endlessly, took eight penalties, totaling 35 minutes.
from Russo’s Rants,
First of all, I can’t believe you’re letting that Denver Post column get to you.
When an article is so absurd and based on such little facts, to me, it’s almost comical, so calm down. Obviously the writer doesn’t know hockey. Obviously the writer doesn’t watch playoff hockey. Obviously the writer hasn’t watched the Calgary-San Jose series. Obviously the writer has never heard of the Broad Street Bullies. Obviously the writer doesn’t know the Wild’s makeup. Obviously the writer doesn’t know the Wild has actually been unbelievably tame this series and should get more physical. And obviously the writer has never talked to or met Jacques Lemaire in his life.
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News
, In fact, here’s what you have to do for the rest of this series - don’t start watching the games until the third period.
It’s quite bizarre, really, because so far in the first round, the Avs and Wild have done everything they can to put you to sleep early in the evening, then keep you on the edge of your seat as the night goes on and Monday night’s game was no exception.
For two periods in this series, the Wild generally spends most of its time skating backwards through the neutral zone, not bothering to forecheck even on the power play and pretty much choking the life out of the game
from Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post,
Let the mugging begin.
It’s the only way the Minnesota Wild can win.
To advance in the NHL playoffs, the Avalanche must embrace the darkness. When playing this goon-it- up Wild bunch, hockey is a no-holds- barred battle of attrition, not skill.
The only good thing that can be said about Minnesota’s 3-2 overtime victory against Colorado was the game lasted so deep into the night that it ended past the bedtime of most kids who could be frightened by the way the Wild mauls all the beauty from the sport.
from Adrian Dater of the Denver Post,
Pierre Marc-Bouchard’s goal at 11:58 of OT won it for Minnesota, which was the stronger-looking team in the extra session. The goal was the result of the Avs’ Jeff Finger taking the wrong path behind the net to a puck that should have been icing. The puck further took a crazy bounce to Brian Rolston in the right corner, and he fed a wide-open Bouchard for a wrister to the top shelf.
“The puck took a funny hop and we made a mistake on the other side of the net,” Avs coach Joel Quenne-ville said. “They had some good chances in OT.”
Watch the OT Game winner and this play may be proof why no-touch icing won’t work…
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 firstname.lastname@example.org