Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
It’s time for the general manager to get on with the business of finding a coach who wants to be in New Jersey for the long-term rather than continuing with one who would operate as a lame duck only out of a sense of responsibility.
There’s no need for Sutter to continue to agonize over his decision. Lamoriello should make it for him and make it for him now, even if that would allow Sutter to immediately slide into the head coach’s position in Calgary that became vacant on Friday when GM Darryl Sutter fired Mike Keenan.
There is no point in holding him hostage to a contract. There is no point in holding the Devils hostage to a lame duck whose authority over the team would invariably be compromised. There is no point to having a short-timer in control of the operation.
read on plus more NHL topics discussed, like NBC and referees in the conference finals…
from Rory Boylen of The Hockey News,
When a team loses, just like most anything else, the immediate urge is to point the finger and pass off the blame to a party without recourse. The refs are an entity that hold ultimate power over each game and are an easy and wide open target for mudslinging, character assassination and even physical challenges. Unfortunately it’s an ugly part of this game and it’s here to stay in some way, shape, or form, but like all the other intangibles within hockey, one can grow up and take a lesson away from the rink.
Being the natural and organic game it is, human error can play a decisive role in any given hockey game. Slashes, trips and interferences go undetected or overly detected, livening up the atmosphere of a game by getting people up in arms and into the action. But what’s done is done; name-callings and death stares will linger, but regardless of what anyone else thinks, someone is going on the power play when the ref makes a call.
from Jim Kelley of Sportsnet,
Normally the rulings on Rule 69 are simple: an attacking player makes incidental contact with the goalkeeper at the time a goal is scored and the goal is allowed. But what exactly is “incidental contact” and doesn’t the goalie have the right to unfettered room in the crease?
An even bigger question is whether or not officials are all on the same page regarding those interpretations and whether or not the people doing video replay have the same understanding of contact, incidental or otherwise, as the people working the game at ice level.
Ice-level views are different from press-box views the same way that real-time action is different than video-replay action.
It gets even more complicated when a goalie moves outside his crease. The rules say he can be hit, but the rules also indicate that there are no rules and certainly no video review regarding a goal scored when the goalie is outside the crease. But what defines outside?
more and other hockey topics too…
from Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star,
No one likes someone who blows the whistle, but it was pretty difficult not to like former NHL referee Art Skov.
The genial Skov, 80, died Sunday after suffering through declining health in recent years.
“He was a real players’ referee,” said retired NHL linesman Matt Pavelich, who worked many a game with his fellow Windsorite.
“He did his job well and he was well respected by everyone in the game. I don’t know if I’ve ever heard someone saw anything bad about Art.”
from Mike Leggo at NHLOfficials.com,
How do you say farewell to a legend? How do you put into words a larger than life character that most hockey fans feel they already know? How do you reveal the private man behind the celebrated Officer Koharski in the movie Wayne’s World, the foil in the famous doughnut episode? That’s the conundrum, trying to describe our friend, Koho.
The hockey world knows about the well publicized larger than life Don Koharski - NHL referee – irrepressible, sometimes awash in hockey headlines, sometimes not, cheerful and always steady. Others know him as the friendly neighbor, the charity minded citizen, the golfer and pal. To us fortunate members of the NHL officiating fraternity he is all of that and more. Our Koho is a mentor, a guide, an example, a teammate, a competitor, an athlete, a father figure, a brother and a friend.
picture via NHL.com
Elliott Friedman did another great interview with retiring referee Don Koharski last night in the ‘Inside Hockey’ segment of the HNIC pre-game show.
from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,
He’s the last on-ice link to the WHA, worked nearly 2,000 NHL games, was stung by pucks in every part of his anatomy, watched Mario Lemieux’s Canada Cup winner up close, got a shout-out in Wayne’s World and turned down Jim Schoenfeld’s advice to consume another beignet on national TV.
Referee Don Koharski will have a relatively quiet exit in a couple of weeks, but this tough old zebra won’t leave the game entirely. League director of officiating Stephen Walkom says a supervisory or instructional position will be discussed with the 53-year-old during the summer….
With his first game on Oct. 14, 1977 (the Cleveland Barons, Colorado Rockies and Atlanta Flames were still in the 18-team NHL), Koharski embarked on an eventful career. He’s recognized not only for his longevity, but working so many big games, such as the multiple Stanley Cup finals and at the Russians’ request, Game 3 of the ‘87 Canada Cup final.
read on and of course, whenever you hear ‘Koharski’, you think of the ‘donut incident’ which you can watch below…
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
The text message was from an NHL general manager. Rob Shick’s cell phone had reached its limit in voice mails, and the team executive was frustrated he couldn’t leave one for the man affectionately known as “Shicker.”
“Fitting, right? One last profanity-laced message from a GM,” Shick, laughing, told ESPN.com this week. “But he was just joking. A lot of people reached out to me last weekend, and that was really nice. I wasn’t expecting it.”
No, the humble referee would have been just fine had his last NHL game on Saturday, the Wild-Kings tilt in Los Angeles, attracted no fanfare. But once word got around late last week that Shick was working his 1,321st and last NHL regular-season game, the phone calls came flooding in from players, coaches, officials and various hockey people.
Mike Robitaille of the Buffalo Sabres TV crew sits down for part one of an exclusive interview with NHL Director of Officiating Stephen Walkom.
Watch the 2nd part of the interview here.
from Japers’ Rink,
My suggestion is not for more instruction from the NHL head office (although that may help). My suggestion is that all referees be paired into teams that will work together through the course of the season. NFL, NBA, and MLB all do that and arguably all of these sports require less communication and implicit understanding among crew members. NFL and MLB officials have regular breaks where they can get together and discuss the call. That is simply not an option in the NHL. The officials need to know the tendencies of their partners, need to know how the other official calls games and know under what circumstances the backside official should be making a call.
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