Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy,
The biggest disappointments in Game 4 ... well, I was going to say it was the strange lack of fire from the Penguins during stretches; but in reality, and without a doubt, they were found in NBC’s broadcast.
While it was nice the telecast acknowledged the tragedy, failing to show the moment of silence before the game in honor of Luc Bourdon was a disgrace and showed a massive misunderstanding of NBC’s hockey audience. The death of an NHL player is a rather atypical occurrence; a moment of silence before a Stanley Cup finals game for a fallen peer is extraordinary. It was a newsworthy moment, and NBC dropped the ball.
and more thoughts on game #4
Update 1:15pm ET: Also from Greg today, Darren McCarty’s thoughts from years back on the horrors of a nude Brendan Shanahan.
From Marty Henwood at Hockey.com,
All things being equal, it seems almost a foregone conclusion that Lidstrom will accept the most fabled piece of hardware in hockey - perhaps as early as Monday night - and hoist it high above his head. Watch closely. You’ll be seeing history.
You see, if Lidstrom and the Wings prove themselves to be the NHL’s best this year - and really it is no longer a question of if but rather when - he will become the first European captain ever to lead his charges in a champagne shower.
Hey, and either way, you’ll see a first. Should the Penguins somehow find a way to win three in a row, Sidney Crosby will be the youngest captain to ever win the Stanley Cup. Right about now, let’s just say that probably isn’t happening. As in a Jessica-Alba-will-probably- not-knock-on-your-door-asking- if-she-can-use-your-shower sorta way.
From the Edmonton Journal,
“I think he can be a star ... you can see the potential he has, the icetime he gets. He never wants to come off, and the way he can skate,” said Oilers assistant coach Charlie Huddy, who looks after the blue-liners. “I think he’s only scratched the surface. His offence will come ... the creativity will come out. You’d like to see him take the puck to the net more, the way he can skate.”
That’s the rub with Pitkanen. He doesn’t get nearly enough points for his ability, although he did have 43 twice in Philadelphia. He had a meagre 26 last season here, albeit in only 63 games because he had a bad knee and sundry other smaller ailments. That put him in a tie for 50th amongst defencemen with David Johnny Oduya in New Jersey and James Wisniewski in Chicago. Hal Gill, who would lose a race with the Zamboni, had 24 points, if you’re counting. Pitkanen should be a 55-60-point defenceman, but he’s not. He might also be a shutdown defenceman because he can close people off with his skating but those sort of guys often have a physical edge to their game. Pitkanen doesn’t.
From Ben Schmitt at the Free Press,
Splat! The octopus hit the ice of Mellon Arena to a chorus of boos just after the national anthem Saturday.
But the tentacled toss didn’t come from a Michigander. Zach Smith, 19, of Cleveland, an avid Red Wings fan and adrenaline junkie, hurled the slimy creature. Then he got tossed. Security guards threw him out.
“You’re outta here,” Smith said they told him. “Come back in and you get arrested.”
But Smith and his two friends from metro Detroit, who asked not to be identified, had a plan. They had bought an extra ticket in anticipation of his booting. That’s an extra $300 from a scalper
From Tim Cowlishaw the Dallas Morning News,
“I came into the league and saw guys that were 32 and I said, “That’s not me. I’ll be done before then,’ ” he said. “Then 32 felt like it came and got here overnight. Now I hear young guys talking about not wanting to put in the work and I think, “Are you kidding me?’ “
Modano said he considered announcing his retirement at different points during the regular season when he was frustrated with his play.
“The first quarter of the season was really rough on me,” he said, recalling his struggles to surpass Phil Housley as the highest-scoring U.S.-born player in league history. “There were probably more times I didn’t feel I was as competitive as I wanted to be than there had been in the past.”
more including his current plans
Elliotte Freidman did a great piece on Bob Probert duing the HNIC pre-game last night.
Cherry can’t believe the ice time for Malkin and feels Wings wrap up the series on Monday.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
When NHL GMs gather tomorrow in Detroit for their Stanley Cup get-together, they’ll start planting the deal-making seeds for the entry draft at Scotiabank Place June 20-21.
While not all the brass showed up at the prospects’ combine that was completed yesterday at the Westin Bristol Place, there were enough executives in the hotel lobby to fan the trade winds that have already started to blow.
Here’s a few players to keep an eye on:
Senators C Jason Spezza: His name will come up a lot in the next few weeks with his salary jumping $3 million (all terms US) to $8 million next season. Hard to believe the Senators would deal him; they’d have to get another front-line centre in return and Spezza has good chemistry with RW Dany Heatley.
from Ron Cook of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
The Red Wings—a terrific club in just about every way—seem destined to lift Lord Stanley’s Cup.
“Obviously, we’re in a tough situation,” Penguins winger Marian Hossa said. “But they still have to win one more game. We’re going to make it really miserable for them.”
That was the general theme in a disappointed Penguins dressing room. No one wanted to talk about having to win three consecutive games, two on the road. “We just have to win one,” defenseman Brooks Orpik said. “If you worry about winning three games, it can get a little overwhelming.”
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
Three days of insistent whining by Michel Therrien about alleged obstruction and a well-timed dive by Sidney Crosby combined to put the Pittsburgh Penguins in a wonderful position to keep their Stanley Cup hopes alive.
But the Detroit Red Wings would have none of it.
Instead, they absorbed an interference call produced by Crosby’s clever lunge that gave the Penguins a long, 5-on-3 power play in the third period last night, grimly fended off every second of it without allowing a single shot on goal and rode that tremendous effort to a 2-1 victory in a hard-fought, bruising Game 4 of the 2008 Cup final.
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