Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Helene Elliott of the LA Times,
Detroit winger Dan Cleary claimed the Ducks “took liberties on certain players that aren’t known to fight,” specifically Datsyuk and defenseman Brian Rafalski. The Ducks felt the Red Wings took liberties with Niedermayer, who has absorbed more than a few cross-checks to the back of the neck and his face.
Asked if the emotions will carry over to today’s game, Cleary hedged. “We’ll see,” he said. “We’ve got to be aggressive on them, got to force them to play good defense, got to be physical on Niedermayer, Getzlaf, Perry, these guys. We’ve got to be hard on them, got to hit them.”
First, they have to catch them. The Ducks’ style is to play an up-tempo game with emotion. Passion alone won’t be enough for them to overcome the Red Wings’ superior skill, but it has given them another chance to prolong a season that appeared nearly dead two months ago.
“Those guys are competitors,” Cleary said. “It’s playoffs. We’re trying to battle for every inch of the ice. You’ve just got to want it more Thursday, that’s all.”
Imagine losing power at 3:00am this morning and the first thing that comes into your mind is how in the heck am I going to watch the game 7’s tonight?
Thankfully power was restored about ten minutes ago and all is well.
I am sure many of the fans who have teams involved in game 7 tonight are trying to make the hands of the clock spin faster. It is a day of anticipation, both in a good and bad way and I hope you are dealing with it in the best way you can.
from Mike Wise of the Washington Post,
Penguins-Capitals was never merely about a tremendous Stanley Cup series showcasing the NHL’s brightest stars going the distance, one full of riveting theater until an abject dud of a Game 7.
No, to the hard-core traditionalists who view most uber-skilled players from overseas as little more than Euro trash, this was about validating their xenophobia.
Sidney Crosby, the quiet farm boy from Nova Scotia, won; his Pittsburgh team is going back to the Eastern Conference finals. Ovechkin, the YouTube demigod who once pretended his stick was on fire after a goal, got his just dessert.
Basically this game was over in the first period.
Too many early turnovers cost the Caps and they never could recover.
This was a great series to watch and sure had the star power to go along with it.
Congrats to both teams.
“Last summer, obviously, I didn’t know whether I was going to play or not and I definitely am going to take my time to make a good decision this summer. Right now, I wouldn’t know what my future is going to be, whether I will play or not.”
-Mats Sundin. More from Brad Ziemer of the Vancouver Sun.
from Al Balderas of Ducks Blog at the OC Register,
What happened to all of that talk about ending the series in six games? What happened to all of that chatter about taking a Game 7 mentality on the ice for Game 6? The Red Wings spent part of Monday afternoon talking about the danger and unpredictability of Game 7s. As a result, they said, it was vitally important to end the series in six games. Then they went out and got their wings handed to them.
If Tuesday night’s performance was indicative of the Red Wings’ Game 7 mentality, they should have stayed at their Disneyland Resort hotel instead of flying back to Detroit.
As bad as things went on Tuesday, the Red Wings on Wednesday were among the few people on earth who can fly into Detroit and actually enjoy the view.
Can you blame them?
from John Glennon of the Tennessean,
Asked if Radulov expressed regret for leaving the Predators in a difficult situation last July, Poile paused before answering.
“I think he has a hard time understanding our position when somebody else was offering him an improved situation,’’ Poile said. “Just like I believe that if he wants to come back — regardless of the fact he signed a multiyear contract there — I don’t believe he thinks it’s a problem coming back.’’
Poile told Radulov that if he did return to Nashville, he’d still need to complete his final contracted season at a base salary of $984,000. Under the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement, teams cannot rework an entry-level deal. Radulov would become a restricted free agent when that deal expires.
“So that’s where we are,’’ Poile said. “It’s up to him to make the next move.’’
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
How Pittsburgh can win
1. Crosby and Malkin … two is bigger than one
The three big boys in this series—Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Alex Ovechkin—have more than delivered the goods, combining for 31 points in the series. But let’s do the math. Can the Caps’ Ovechkin win a game by himself? Yes, he can. But if Ovechkin, Crosby and Malkin all bring their A-games Wednesday night, it should give the Penguins an edge, given the additional pressure on the Capitals’ defenders and rookie netminder Simeon Varlamov….
How Washington can win
1. The one-man wrecking crew
Yes, we know it’s a team game, blah, blah, blah. But as much as Crosby has been a dynamic force in driving the Penguins forward and overcoming obstacles, Ovechkin has been the same kind of figure on the other side of the ice.
via the Detroit News,
Tuesday night’s Detroit-Anaheim NHL playoff game was the fifth-most watched Red Wings telecast in the 12-year history of Fox Sports Detroit.
The game drew a 13.5 rating in Metro Detroit (260,145 households), making it the most-watched show in the market on Tuesday night. The top four:
1. Red Wings vs. Ducks, Fox Sports Detroit (13.5 rating)
2. American Idol, FOX (13.2)
3. The Biggest Loser, NBC (10.2)
4. Dancing With the Stars, ABC (9.6)
Not bad for a game that started after 10:00pm ET.
...hard answer. Who wins tonight?
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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