Kukla's Korner Hockey
F-bombs being tossed, rink mic picks-up the linseman.
A summary of the Hotstove talk from last night... P.J. Stock takes a look at Craig Anderson, Elliotte Friedman talked coaching jobs including Patrick Roy in Colorado, Glenn Healy talked about the NHL participating in the Olympics with things looingk very positive and the last topic was the $100,000 fine Doug Wilson was hit with but why wasn't George McPhee?
from Tony Gallagher of the Vancouver Province,
After watching the World Hockey Championships this past couple of weeks, you have to wonder at what point the NHL will begin to face reality.
We speak here of the failure to recognize how the entertainment value of their product is on a downhill slide.
We speak of their continuing insistence, for instance, on keeping their ice surfaces at exactly the same size as its always been, despite the fact the game is almost choking itself to death given the increase in the size of the players and the speed at which they move.
It’s a simple case of physics the NHL types simply won’t face.
You have bigger, faster players in better shape than they’ve ever been, racing around in the same confined area. That means more collisions and at a greater impact level, and as a result you’re getting the kind of horrific injuries you do, including concussion and skyrocketing injury rates that demand more and more depth in organizations. And more collisions mean more defence.
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
* New rule: When a penalty is assessed at the 20:00 mark of a period, the next period shall begin with the faceoff in the offensive zone of the club on the power play and not at the center dot.
New rule: When a player intentionally is thrown out of the faceoff circle following an icing in order to give his team a few extra seconds of rest — as was the case twice with the Bruins’ Milan Lucic in Game 1 against the Rangers — a delay of game minor shall be called.
* Boy, oh boy, is there an abundance of misplaced pity on behalf of Raffi Torres, the serial predator now employed by the Sharks serving a suspension of up to six games for his — what else? — headshot that took out the Kings Jarret Stoll in Game 1 of the Western semis.
And in arguing on behalf of his player, Sharks general manager Doug Wilson comes off as just another in a long line of NHL enablers whose failure to condemn recidivists such as Torres and Patrick Kaleta contribute to the danger these players pose to those around them every time they take the ice.
from Kerry Fraser of TSN,
Every other rule in the book allows for referee discretion to determine the existence of an infraction, along with the varying degrees at the referee's disposal to implement the final assessment ranging from a minor, double minor, major or match penalty. Aside from determining if the puck is deflected, the referee's discretion is nonexistent when it come to Rule 63.2 — Delaying the Game; Puck over the glass!
We have seen more than one playoff game determined when a player accidentally put the puck over the glass to incur a penalty. It matters not if the puck was rolling and unsettled or the ice was bad and contributed to the flight of the puck. It's the only rule that I can honestly say is simply 'Black and White'!
It was very disconcerting for me to see obvious infractions that went uncalled in deciding games and particularly Game 7's that were played in the previous round. These 'discretionary calls' ranged from body slams to majors for elbowing, cross-checks from behind or a major cross-check infraction to the face (minor called), attempted slew-foot, goalkeeper retaliation with a blocker strike to an opponent's head, charging, and boarding. The referee 'discretion' implemented at times pretty much ran the gambit with a "let them play" mentality.
While I'm not suggesting that this poor standard of enforcement is in any way acceptable, it further demonstrates the absurdity of the puck over glass rule as it now exists.
from John Branch of the New York Times,
The family of the Derek Boogaard filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against the National Hockey League.
It contends that the N.H.L. is responsible for the physical trauma and brain damage that Boogaard sustained during six seasons as one of the league’s top enforcers, and for the addiction to prescription painkillers that marked his final two years.
Boogaard was under contract with the Rangers when he was found dead of an accidental overdose of prescription painkillers and alcohol on May 13, 2011. He was 28. He was posthumously diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or C.T.E., a brain disease caused by repeated blows to the head.
“To distill this to one sentence,” said William Gibbs, a lawyer for the Boogaards, “you take a young man, you subject him to trauma, you give him pills for that trauma, he becomes addicted to those pills, you promise to treat him for that addiction, and you fail.”
The N.H.L., through a spokesman, declined to comment Sunday.
from Szymon Szemberg of IIHF.com,
When an Olympic ice hockey event is planned, there are many stakeholders involved. So at Friday’s meeting in downtown Stockholm there were representatives from the IOC, Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee, the National Olympic Committees, IIHF, IIHF Member National Associations, the NHL, and the NHL Players’ Association.
IIHF President René Fasel opened the meeting with the following encouraging words:
“We are working hard to putting together the last pieces to ensure NHL players’ participation in Sochi. We have some issues left, but I, as always, remain optimistic.”
Fasel did not mention a date for when a final agreement with the NHL/NHLPA needs be reached, but NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly echoed the optimism:
“We are proceeding under the assumption that the NHL will participate in Sochi. We are still working on important issues with the IIHF and the IOC, and subject to our board of governors’ consideration and approval, it remains the objective that Sochi will be the fifth consecutive Olympics with NHL participation and where the NHL shuts down for the duration of the Olympic tournament.”
The Top 10 Playoff rants directed af the refs, TSN style.
from Robert Passikoff of Forbes,
The National Hockey League hasn’t treated fans all that well – at least not when it comes to managing to get teams out on the ice as regularly as fans might desire.
There was the strike back in ’92. Then the lockout of ’94. Another lockout in 2004-05. Oh, and then there was this season’s 2012-13 lockout. Pity the poor hockey fan. If, as Woody Allen suggested, that 80% of life is just showing up, there hasn’t been much life in the league for NHL fans this season.
The newest lockout began last September after the League and Players’ Association couldn’t agree about a lot of stuff. There’s lots of discussion about what and who caused the lockout. But it shortened the season which was scheduled to begin on October 11th,by about 42%, signifying the cancellation of 510 regular season games and the 2013 NHL Winter Classic. So way short of Mr. Allen’s recommendation. But a lot better than 2004, when the entire season was cancelled.
In spite of the significantly shortened season (or perhaps because of it), there are more loyalty ties this year than in preceding years. According to fans in the teams’ own DMAs, the current 2013 NHL top-5 and bottom-5 team loyalty rankings are as follows (numbers in parentheses indicate last season’s standings):
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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