Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Ian Winwood at The Guardian,
I have just one question: what kind of lunatic would play a game that sees this thing [a hockey puck] flying about the place at a hundred miles an hour?
The point of this week’s column is to wonder ... actually, to marvel at the toughness of the hockey player. It is, of course, a given that those on skates, especially those skating six weeks into the post-season, are among the toughest athletes in the world. This truism, though, wasn’t quite good enough for me, so in the interests of authenticity, not to mention hard science, I conducted an experiment. These are my findings.
From Tom Jones at Tampa Bay.com,
First, I’m a hockey guy. I covered the NHL for 15 years and if the choice is between watching a hockey game on television and watching another event live from the first row, I’d probably pick the hockey game. To me, it’s the best sport there is, and there’s nothing like the passion, drama and intensity of the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Except this year. (And, to be honest, last season, too, because I wrote about this same subject.) Quite frankly, the NBA playoffs have been better than the NHL playoffs. Here are five reasons why:
continued… and he’s got a couple good points, but I have a feeling that hockey fans are going to disagree strongly with some others…
The NHL has built a dedicated website for the 2008 Entry Draft.
Site features all the latest news, player profiles, scouting reports, photos, video and interviews, and will continue to be updated.
A couple days ago, Steve pointed to the story about the interest Versus might have in “puck tracking” (i.e. flashbacks to the infamous glowing puck). Today, William Houston at the Globe & Mail notes that any such plans would be limited:
Versus is pursuing a puck-tracking technology that, according to USA Today, could be used as soon as the next NHL season. This would be for replays rather than live coverage. Anything involving a live application - such as the FoxTrax from the 1990s - would require the NHL’s approval and participation.
*hat-tip to Puck Daddy for the pointer
From Chuck Gormley at The Sporting News,
The reason the Penguins-Oilers comparisons don’t hold any water is because the days of NHL dynasties are over.
There is simply too much parity in the NHL. As good as the Penguins are right now—and they are good—Crosby and Evgeni Malkin will need to get past players such as Mike Richards and Jeff Carter of the Flyers, Alex Ovechkin and Alexander Semin of the Capitals and Chris Drury and Scott Gomez of the Rangers every year to have a shot at consecutive Stanley Cups. That won’t be easy in a salary-cap driven NHL, rendering the days of NHL dynasties as a thing of the past.
more plus other NHL talk
From Darren Dreger at TSN,
We saw that in Game two of the Flyers-Penguins game when it appeared that Sidney Crosby had scored to give the Penguins a 2-0 lead late in the first. Most believe that it was a goal, but video review couldn’t conclusively prove it.
The NHL wants to get it right and has experimented in the past with visual aids that have never been adopted. Last year, during the Stanley Cup final the NHL’s hockey operations department tested what it called a “verification line.” The test was conducted in between games and was meant to be highly secretive.
The test was however caught on camera and it uncovered a second line painted on the ice behind the goal line creating a gap a fraction wider than the width of the puck. So, if the puck touched this “verification line” than it would be deemed a good goal.
ESPN’s Page 2 provides a to-do list for the NHL titled “Here’s how the NHL can reclaim its share of the spotlight.” And while I realize it’s meant to be amusing, there might be too much irony to this for ESPN to pull it off…
Anyway, from the list:
• The “glow puck” returns and is joined with “glow sticks,” “glow skates,” “glow beards” and “glow blood!”
• Encourage players to start showing more raw emotion.
• Foster the return of real rivalries.
• Have players get into the public eye more often by hanging out with Hollywood types.
• For the same reason, have Elisha Cuthbert date every North American-born player … and have Anna Kournikova date every Russian-born player.
more ideas that would make ESPN fall in love with hockey…
The number of Europeans playing in the National Hockey League (NHL) is on the decline according to a survey released by the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) on Saturday.
There were fewer Europeans than a year ago playing in the just completed NHL regular season but more American-born players, it said.
Canadians continued to dominate rosters, providing more than half the league’s talent.
Europeans accounted for 243 (25.8 percent) of the 941 players appearing in at least one NHL game this season, down from 266 players a year ago.
From Spector at FoxSports,
The Stanley Cup playoffs are the time for the NHL’s best players to shine, and many have stepped up once again.
Veteran stars such as Detroit’s Nicklas Lidstrom, Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg; Dallas’ Marty Turco, Brendan Morrow and Brad Richards; Philadelphia’s Daniel Briere and Pittsburgh’s Marian Hossa continue to prove they’re among the game’s very best in leading their respective clubs to the conference finals.
That’s not to say young and emerging stars haven’t been sharing the stage with those established players.
Sidney Crosby is the most hyped and recognizable of the bunch but several others have earned a share of this year’s spotlight.
from Chilling Out by John Glennon at the Tennessean,
If the first round of the NHL playoffs earned notoriety for the so-called “Sean Avery rule,’’ then this round of the postseason should focus on a “Tomas Holmstrom rule.’’
Specifically, here’s what it should be: Any goal scored by Holmstrom gets automatically reviewed by the NHL.
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