Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Rob Oiler of the Columbus Dispatch,
“I just sell it. What they do with it is up to them,” said Frank Gonzalez, owner of Frank’s Fish & Seafood Market on Trabue Road in Columbus.
What they do with it is the second hurdle. The common method is to sneak the octopus through the turnstiles by slipping it into your trousers, a technique that Gonzalez does not understand.
“I wouldn’t want something moving around down there when you’re moving around,” he said, smiling.
“They’ve been creative,” said Eric Granger, general manager of Nationwide Arena. “We’ve caught them Saran-wrapped to the body.”
Most contraband carriers get caught before they reach their seats, having failed to elude the authorities, who conduct bag searches and quick visuals under jerseys and around torsos for every game and event.
from E.J. Hradek of ESPN,
Here are five things I jotted into my playoff notebook while watching the Ducks put the Presidents’ Trophy-winning Sharks into a 2-0 series bind Sunday night at the Shark Tank.
1. Anaheim goalie Jonas Hiller’s game has had few holes so far in the California classic. The Swiss-born stopper, who grabbed the net because longtime Ducks starter Jean-Sebastien Giguere was struggling, has been rock solid, turning back 77 of 79 San Jose shots….
2. The Sharks finished the regular season with the third-best power-play unit in the league, converting at a 24.2 percent clip. In the first two games of this first-round playoff series, that same power play has been a dud….
added 11:03am, from Ken Campbell of The Hockey News,
The Sharks have not been that bad in this series. They have been inspired for the most part (although they have had no ability to maintain momentum or keep any sustained pressure on the Ducks). Their goaltending has been excellent and Joe Thornton accomplished more in his first shift in Game 2 than he did in all of Game 1.
It’s certainly not fair that Jonas Hiller is playing better than he ever has in his life.
from Stan Fischler of Game On,
If the Washington Capitals aren’t nervous about becoming victims of a first-round sweep, they should be….
You may be wondering — now that the series is two-zip in New York’s favor — why Washington’s weaknesses haven’t been more actively advertised.
The answer is evident: so much hype has centered on Alex Ovechkin, Mike Green & Co. that the automatic tendency is to overlook the fact that hockey still is a team game.
Brandon Dubinsky & Alex OvechkinTherefore, if you have a sieve for a goaltender, an inept defense and generally weak support beyond Ovie and friends, the chances are that you’re going to be susceptible to defeat. And since Alexander The Great scored in neither of the first two games, Washington’s Achilles heels were egregiously exposed.
via Dave Stubbs at Habs Inside/Out,
Robert Lang is skating in equipment, shooting the puck, and he’s wearing a grin a mile wide. Andrei Markov is on Bell Centre ice, as well, both guys firing on Concordia goalie Maxime Joyal.
from Vicki Hall of the Calgary Herald,
One by one, the Calgary Flames subjected themselves to public psychoanalysis in the bowels of Pengrowth Saddledome.
“You can’t ever have that defeatist attitude, or you’re done,” said Flames centre Craig Conroy. “You’ve got to believe.”
The Flames returned home in the wee hours of Sunday morning to a city of non-believers—or, at the very least, doubters—after losing the first two games of their best-of seven Western Conference quarter-final at United Center against the Chicago Blackhawks.
Blackhawks goalie Nikolai Khabibulin, a longtime Calgary nemesis, seemed as impenetrable as ever. With their early dominance, Chicago captain Jonathan Toews and sidekick Patrick Kane have already given Calgary supporters painful flashbacks to the time Wayne Gretzky and Mark Messier wore Edmonton Oilers jerseys.
from Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
A lot of things contributed to the Penguins’ 6-3 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers yesterday at the Wachovia Center in Game 3 of this first-round playoff series.
Right winger Petr Sykora believes at least one of them was the Penguins’ own doing.
The Penguins, he said, allowed themselves to be drawn into too many post-whistle scrums and scuffles, something they made a point of avoiding in victories in Games 1 and 2 at Mellon Arena.
“We knew they were going to try to suck us in, play their style, try to get those scrums, get those little fights,” Sykora said. “That’s the way they want to beat us, and it worked because we got sucked in.
from John Vogl of the Buffalo News,
One longtime announcer and former NHL player, while watching the Sabres practice in his team’s arena on game day, remarked, “I’ve never, ever been to such a quiet morning skate. Nobody’s saying anything.”
No one is saying the Sabres need a loudmouth like Sean Avery in the room. But too many quiet players did lessen the Sabres. During a few off-the-record chats, some Sabres said the silence diminished their days.
It was described as this: Imagine walking into a room eager to start your day. You’re excited about getting ready to play in front of 19,000 fans, thrilled to be living in the fantasy world of a professional hockey player. You’re bubbling to chat and get more psyched up, giddy with anticipation about the drop of the puck.
You get to the rink and ... nothing. It seems no one is sharing your fun or excitement. You look left and a guy is silently lacing his skates. You look right and the teammate may as well be Charlie Chaplin or Marcel Marceau.
from Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun,
It’s been a great series to watch. But why hasn’t it been a series?
Why is it over before it begins? Why are the Vancouver Canucks up 3-0 on the St. Louis Blues?
Two words? Roberto Luongo?
Two teams? Vancouver’s special teams?
Two tougher twins in Daniel and Hendrik?
Yes. Yes. And yes.
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
It was the first Sunday of the 2009 Stanley Cup playoffs, anything but a day of rest.
It was a day that contained meaningful hope for the Flames, Blue Jackets, Canadiens and Capitals, but also lessons of despair.
These are the mixed messages of the playoffs, with this year’s best described as the Spring of the Scrum. After all, have you ever seen so many 5-on-5, face-washin’, headlock-grabbin’ wastes of time since the days of Freddie (The Fog) Shero?
But back to Calgary, Columbus, Montreal and Washington and the lessons they derived from yesterday’s ferocious competition.
from David Pollak of Working the Corners,
First, a couple numbers — of the 291 NHL playoff series where teams have started out 0-2, the team trailing has come back to win 12.7 percent of the time. Strangely, in the 66 cases where it was the home team that was trailing as the Sharks are now, 16 have ended up winning the series, or 24.2 percent. Makes no sense to me either.
Most players subscribe to the theory that you take the positives and move on after a loss like Sunday night’s where the Sharks genuinely did improve their play but still came out on the short end. Dan Boyle isn’t one of those players.
“Some guys have a different attitude,” he said. “I look at it as black and white. We lost the game. I don’t really feel good about stuff. I’m different, but you’ve got to win the game. That’s the bottom line.”
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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