Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Lightning Strikes,
...It seems you have to believe the part about him not knowing about such a trade because it just doesn’t seem to make sense for the Lightning which was supposed to give up Richards, its second-line center and one of its alternate captains for Ryder and Kostsitsyn who between them have just 11 points, and Halak has 16 NHL games to his name.
I’m sure the potential new owners of the franchise would love to have to fill that kind of hole in the roster.
from the CP via Yahoo,
With Higgins’ combination of speed, skill and willingness to battle for pucks, the only question now is how much of an impact player he will become.
He had 23 goals as a rookie in 2005-06 and 22 last season, despite missing 21 games either sick or injured. The No. 40 was suggested and the six-foot-200-pound Higgins nodded.
“I definitely think I’m capable of reaching 40 goals,” he said. “That’s a good marker for me.
from the CP,
Gillett said that despite the rising value of the loonie, the NHL’s salary cap will keep the team’s payroll in check.
But a stronger dollar allows the hockey club to spend aggressively and continue to build with younger players and supplement with free agents.
“No matter what happens with the exchange rate, up or down, we’re going to spend aggressively toward the cap,” he said.
From Jack Todd at the Montreal Gazette,
You can toss out the form chart. Forget the odds. Pay no attention to the fact the Toronto Maple Leafs lost 3-2 last night in New Jersey, or that the Canadiens are coming off a superb performance against the Philadelphia Flyers Thursday night.
The Leafs also absorbed a 7-1 pounding on home ice against the Capitals Monday. That matters about as much as the price of chai in China.
When the bell rings tonight, the two teams stepping into the ring might as well be fighting a unification bout for a heavyweight title, because when the Canadiens and Leafs hook up on a Saturday night, it’s playoff hockey.
from the CP via TSN,
A day after taking heat for not speaking French, Montreal Canadiens captain Saku Koivu spoke a few words in a pre-recorded feature shown before a game Thursday night at the Bell Centre.
A surprised crowd cheered as Koivu said ‘‘ici Saku Koivu, voici mon equipe’’ (Saku Koivu here, this is my team) before reading out the Canadiens lineup in a mix of English and French on the video scoreboard.
from the Montreal Gazette,
“Nothing is happening with him on the ice,” Carbonneau explained. “We felt like we needed to win the game, so I went with the guys I thought could help us do that. I was trying to switch some lines and trying to create something. I was looking for a spark.”
Ryder, who has been the Canadiens’ top goal-scorer in each of the past two seasons with 30, played 11:35 Tuesday night….
“I don’t think it’s time to panic,” said Ryder, who had four goals at this point last season.
“There haven’t been too many games when our line hasn’t created some chances and there are other top scorers who have scored only three or four goals.”
from The National Post,
An unlikely name popped up Tuesday at provincial public hearings looking into reasonable accommodation for religious minorities in Quebec: Saku Koivu.
Lawyer Guy Bertrand, a separatist-turned-federalist-turned-separatist-again, dropped the gloves about the Montreal Canadiens’ captain’s lack of fluency in French.
Bertrand was critical of the Finnish-born Koivu’s failure “to respect the right of Quebecers to be served in French.”
Updated 6:46pm ET:
From TSN, a response from Koivu,
“I’m not perfect,” he told a scrum of reporters at the Bell Centre. “There’s nothing we can do when politicians have opinions on the team or on me Sometimes you can’t control what’s being said out there.”
From Jim Kelly at Sportsnet,
The Habs are a surprising second in the Northeast Division (to Ottawa) and through Monday night were 6-2-2 and tied for third overall in the Eastern Conference and tied for fifth overall with the likes of Philadelphia and Colorado. Isn’t that where Vancouver or maybe Calgary was supposed to be?
To be sure, both the Flames and the Canucks have had their problems, especially in regards keeping the puck out of their respective nets, but the Habs have out-pointed every Canadian entity except the Senators and even have some games in hand in comparison to some teams ahead of them in the standings.
How is this happening you ask? Well, in a word, goaltending.
Tack on another it would be defence and after that add things like timely scoring, smart positional play, a potent power-play attack (often the best in the league so far) and consistently strong lines.
From the CP via TSN,
The Montreal Canadiens are calling for an NHL rule change after defenceman Francis Bouillon suffered a shoulder injury from a hit in the dying seconds of overtime.
The Canadiens feel that Pittsburgh defenceman Sergei Gonchar should not have been allowed to take part in a shootout after he was called for boarding with 1.6 seconds left in the five-minute overtime in Montreal’s 4-3 win over the Penguins on Saturday night.
from Habs Inside/Out,
Congratulations to Canadiens forward Alex Kovalev, who last night scored the 800th point of his NHL career – in his 1,000th game.
*view some pictures of Kovalev in action during his 1,000th game…
(sorry. link no longer available)
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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