Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Chuck Gormley at The Sporting News,
But for all of the players who have had their names inscribed on the Cup, an equal number have fallen just short in their quest for Lord Stanley’s coveted mug. So what separates the winners from the losers? What makes the 34 1/2-pound silver chalice so difficult to attain?
For answers, we sought out current and former players who have reached the finals.
continued with memories and opinions from the likes of Mike Knuble, Georges Laraque, Bobby Clarke and others
From Puck Daddy at Yahoo! Sports…
The abridged review of the NHL Powered by Reebok Featuring XM with Special Appearance by Starbucks Store: Cool gear, awesome customer service, but I was promised an ice wall “which serves as a backdrop to feature merchandise as well as the Stanley Cup at select times throughout the year,” and I did not get to see an ice wall “which serves as a backdrop to feature merchandise as well as the Stanley Cup at select times throughout the year.”
But Puck Daddy has fun nonetheless, reviewing the NHL store, accompanied by photos. (Including an ever-so-slightly disturbing image of my fine friend copping a feel off a female mannequin wearing a Blues t-shirt…)
Retired NHLer David Littman tells some tales from his life in hockey, today at The Hockey News:
People may not believe this, but playing in the minors is just as much fun as playing in the NHL. The only difference is there are fewer zeros on your paycheck. Things happen in the minors that would never happen in the NHL.
I was playing for the Atlanta Knights in the IHL, the farm team for the Tampa Bay Lightning, and we were playing the Salt Lake Golden Eagles, Calgary’s farm team.
In the first period, there was a fight in front of my net and I jumped in to help a teammate. I looked up and Andre Trefilov, the opposing goalie, was coming at me full steam. We fought for a bit, got game misconducts and were kicked out of the game.
By the second period, we were both up in the stands sitting with our respective scratched teammates drinking beers. By the third period, we’d all had a few drinks when the Salt Lake backup goalie was hit and went down hard.
From David Newland at The Canoe Dossier,
I want to see the NHL succeed. It’s a grand tradition and was once a great game. But as a lifelong fan, I feel like I’ve never been consulted on what would make the game great again. So I’m offering my two cents’ worth anyway, and I hope you’ll do the same.
1. Management must love the game more than the money.
I think we can call that first idea “unintended humor.” Other ideas on the list might be more feasible, however. Matters for debate, anyway—check it out.
KK member Heaton brings up an interesting subject in the KK Forums…
Are ticket brokers an underlying cause for the “lack” of passion that people are tying to the empty seats at Joe Louis Arena? I’m one of those people who usually buries their head in the sand on this subject, I hate it, I think it’s overblown and makes false pretenses about the Wings and their fans.
read on and although this is his first post at the KK Forums, Heaton is well known within the hockey web world.
From The Sporting News,
Coyotes left winger Daniel Carcillo—5-11, 203 pounds with a crazy-high 324 penalty minutes in his first full season—is learning the hard way that competitiveness and chaos can be tough to tell apart. Here are his 10 tips for surviving and thriving as a middleweight fighter, as told to SN’s Steve Greenberg.
1. You have to want to do it. Unless you’re 6-8, 250 pounds, you should never let a coach force you to fight. I’m a pretty mellow guy off the ice; a lot of people who get to know me say I’m totally different than the guy they see at the arena. But I’ll tell you something my coach, Wayne Gretzky, and my teammates already know: I like to fight.
Get all Carcillo’s tips for the trade. A great piece.
And if you want to think about fights even more this week, Patrick Hruby at ESPN writes about The Men Who Love Goons.
From the Sporting News,
Before the Stanley Cup finals begin, it’s time to hand out Sporting News’ 2008 NHL Awards. Winners were determined by a vote of their peers, and all voting was conducted before the playoffs. Individuals could not vote for themselves, and players could not vote for teammates.
Player of the year: Alex Ovechkin, LW, Capitals
continued with more on AO, plus naming the Coach of the Year, Rookie of the Year and Executive of the Year
From Marty Henwood at Hockey.com,
The Summerside, PEI native, who battles a neuromuscular disorder that prevents him from speaking, won CBC’s Bring Home The Cup contest, meaning legendary captain Mark Messier, along with Lord Stanley himself, paid a visit to town over the weekend.
Adam Bourque. An inspiration. One heck of a hockey fan. And, oh, yeah, Summerside’s newest celebrity.
Watching Adam Bourque’s video entry to the contest — in which a computer had to transmit his words for him — one must marvel at not only his courage but the passion he has for a game. And it shows the importance of the Stanley Cup, what it means to not only those who dream of lifting it one day, but those who just dare to dream, period.
From Paul Kukla at NHL.com,
I am taking a different approach today and will officially welcome you to the Metro Detroit area. I ask you to forget all the negative things you have read and heard about Motown. Sure there are areas you want to avoid, just like every large city in the world. Instead I will point out how the folks in Southeast Michigan will welcome you with open arms. We are a hard working bunch, and although this area is suffering through a down-turn in the automotive industry, we still are trying to keep our heads above water. Approach us, talk to us, we don’t bite and want to talk hockey with you and get your feelings on our game.
Michiganders love hockey, we love that is all that is good about the sport. It is in our blood and we have been playing in the NHL since the mid-1920’s. Our father’s father passed the game on to us. Our mother’s know the game too. We appreciate the special talents each and every NHL player has. We are amazed and hypnotized by the action on the ice and we feel part of the Detroit Red Wings family. Plain and simple, we are hockey fans.
From Stu Hackel at the NYT blog Slapshot,
We’ve all heard this kind of talk, and some people believe it — the notion that the NHL prefers a certain outcome and encourages on-ice officials to act accordingly.
It seems to us there is more loose talk about the NHL preferring certain teams over others than you hear attached to other major leagues. Since hockey trails other major sports in popularity by a good distance, those who whisper or shout such allegations do nothing to help hockey’s quest for respect.
The media plays a role in this and, no doubt, refuels fans when they do. A few weeks ago a Philadelphia columnist claimed the officials favored Montreal, that the NHL wanted the Canadiens to beat the Flyers since “Canada looks out for its own.” A couple of weeks later, after the Flyers won the series, he recanted citing the emotions generated by the playoffs for his distortion.
much more… on the debate surrounding the league’s integrity vs some people’s paranoia
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 email@example.com