Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,
I think there’s an outside chance the Avs might try to get Maxim Afinogenov from the Sabres. I do know for sure they’ve made some inquiries about him. He’s having an awful season in Buffalo and is kind of the Arnie of the Sabres’ message boards. But he’s got skill, and people who know Maxim just think he needs a change of scenery. He’s been in Buffalo a while now, and it’s time for a change.
The usual suspects might be dangled to get him - (Brett) Clark - but with Foote’s injury, a trade involving a D-man might be less tenable.
more Avs talk…
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
Tomas Kaberle is surveying the National Hockey League landscape, asking questions and opening his mind to the possibility of being traded by the Toronto Maple Leafs.
For him, that represents a whole new vision for his future. If he had done this last February, he could have been playing for the Philadelphia Flyers last night and scoring threat Jeff Carter would have lined up as a Leaf.
continued with more hockey notes tossed-in among other sports talk…
Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun makes some trades…
Colorado sends RW Ian Laperriere to Dallas for Steve Ott: Even though Ott is out for a month with a broken right hand, the Stars need to get him out of the dressing room permanently….
Toronto sends D Pavel Kubina to Vancouver for D Mattias Ohlund: Kubina would have to waive his no-trade clause, but once Brian Burke takes over as GM in Leafland, Kubina’s shelf life will be short….
Columbus sends G Frederic Norrena to Calgary for a draft pick: G Miikka Kiprusoff isn’t playing as well as the Flames need him to, but it’s difficult to take him out of the net without a reliable backup.
if you want to read more, feel free to do so. You will run into a lot of ‘could happen’, ‘maybe’, ‘possible’, etc…
During the Hotstove on HNIC these topics were discussed: Pierre LeBrun reports the Blackhawks are looking at Sundin, but a lot of salary would have to be moved, either Martin Havlat or Nikolai Khabulin.
Mike Cammalleri is being shopped by Calgary according to Al Strachan.
Craig MacTavish is feeling the heat but will not be fired, too close to Kevin Lowe for that to happen.
from Tom Harringon of CBC Sports,
Five years ago, I began doing research for a possible documentary on Burke for Sports Journal, the current affairs program I hosted for seven years. My interest was peaked after reading about a Vancouver radio host who made a lewd, suggestive remark about the wife of then-Canucks star Todd Bertuzzi.
Burke was outraged. He revoked accreditation for the station’s hockey reporters and pulled the club’s advertising from the station. The host was fired.
I contacted a wide range of reporters who covered the team on a regular basis to find out what was behind Burke’s actions. Whether they worked for newspapers, radio or television stations, one after the other told stories of Burke’s interfering, often intimidating style….
A producer described being invited to lunch by Burke then facing a verbal attack in front of stunned patrons. A hockey columnist said Burke met with his publisher on several occasions, demanding they dismiss the writer because of the thrust of his columns.
Others recalled scenes of Burke chewing out a reporter in the hallway outside the Canucks dressing room, in front of colleagues, with language that would make Andrew Dice Clay blush.
from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,
The news isn’t good from the Avalanche’s morning skate: Sakic won’t play tonight against Tampa Bay, and his status is now listed as “indefinite.” We could be in the throes of a sad end to No. 19’s brilliant career. One last “clean” in the weight room - one last clean that he said he wasn’t even going to do, but said he did anyway in a kind of “what the heck?” manner - has hijacked Sakic’s and the Avs’ season….
It’s not a good situation, and this, I believe, will sink this listing Avs team for good this year. This team just doesn’t believe in itself, doesn’t have enough passion and - from what I have witnessed - doesn’t have the close kind of chemistry of the last few teams….
Here’s the other news from the skate: Adam Foote has been placed on injured reserve, retroactive to Nov. 22. Former DU defenseman Aaron MacKenzie has been recalled from Lake Erie and will be available tonight (although probably won’t be in the lineup).
Foote’s upper back (neck) is still bothering him, and this mysterious knee injury has also crept into the situation. Injuries like these are what can happen when a
stiff, no-talent, cheap-shot artist
forward like John Zeiler runs you from behind.
via Fluto Shinzawa of the Bruins Blog at the Boston Globe,
“Every night we play in the league, when you read the clips before, it’s a ‘measuring game.’ It’s a ‘measuring-stick game,’ ” said Detroit’s Mike Babcock. “This is our 23d measuring-stick game for the other team. Every night is for us. It’s going to be fun for us.”
“I think,” Babcock continued, “when I watch all the teams in the league right now, the two teams that seem to be the most excited and all playing together are Boston and San Jose. Those are the two teams for me.”
# On the other side, Claude Julien said tonight’s game will be a good test for the Bruins. “Right now, I think it’s a great way to show that we are a good team, but also with the type of talent that team has on the other side, a puck-possession team, it’s going to be a good test for us,” Julien said.
from John Glennon of the Tennessean,
(Steve) Sullivan said he doesn’t want to raise expectations – for himself or for Predators fans – but he was clearly excited to be on the ice with teammates. After slipping a wrist shot past Pekka Rinne, he made sure to grab the puck afterward.
“I hadn’t shot on a goalie in a long time,” Sullivan said. “It was my first goal in two years, so I got the puck.”
Sullivan said he has no timetable about trying to return to full practice, but is simply going on a day-by-day basis. He’ll see how he feels waking up Sunday and decide on how much exercise to do that day.
“I’m not getting overly optimistic or anything,” Sullivan said. “What I was doing out here and what you need to do in an NHL game are two very different things….
from Greg Logan of On the Islanders Beat,
Ninth overall draft pick Josh Bailey could have returned quietly to Windsor as soon as he recovered from the lower body injury he suffered in training camp, and all concerned would have praised the skill he showed and the wisdom of the club to let him mature as captain of the Spitfires and a member of Team Canada at the World Junior Championships after Christmas in Ottawa.
But quite simply, the Islanders need a bright light like Bailey far more than he needs them. In the midst of their struggles in the third period to hold leads and sustain an aggressive attack, Bailey’s continued development has been one of the sources of evidence that management might be on the right track in building for the future, which can’t come soon enough for general manager Garth Snow and coach Scott Gordon.
from Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star,
Those calling, or hoping, for new general manager Brian Burke to ratchet up the Maple Leafs’ rebuilding process by dumping veterans for draft picks, might be wise to tone down their enthusiasm.
During his years in Vancouver, Burke and his staff were not exactly draft day geniuses.
We all know that the entry draft is a guessing game at the best of times; an educated guessing game but a crap shoot nonetheless. And twice during his time heading up the Canucks, Burke completely crapped out on draft day.
Toronto will officially introduce Burke today at 2pm ET and you can watch at the Leafs site.
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.
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