Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Wayne Scanlan of the Ottawa Citizen,
How accurate a snapshot do we get of the NHL standings at the quarter-pole of the regular season?
Based on last year’s evidence, pretty accurate.
I took a snap of the standings about one year ago, Nov. 21, at which point most clubs had reached the 20-game mark. I wanted to see how many of the top eight teams at that juncture actually finished in the top eight.
Conversely, how many outsiders at the quarter mark leaped up and grabbed a playoff berth.
Of eight Eastern Conference teams holding playoff spots on Nov. 21, five held on to those spots, while three fell out.
In the West, the picture was even more in focus. Six of the eight eventual playoff teams were already in postseason position.
from John Vogl of the Buffalo News,
With one-quarter of the season done, the Sabres are exactly where people expected. They entered Monday night in ninth place, four points out of fifth and three points ahead of 13th.
It’s how they got there that has folks in Sabreland wringing their hands or letting the profanities fly.
The Sabres are simply not good right now. No team on a five-game losing streak can be. They’ve won just once in the last eight games (1-6-1), sliding to 9-8-3 overall.
“We’re in tough right now,” coach Lindy Ruff said.
The slump has rained on the Stanley Cup parade some fanatics were planning after the opening eight games. The Sabres started 6-0-2, and it appeared they had regained their form after a season out of the playoffs.
The Canadiens lost to the Islanders 4-3 in a shootout.
This should answer some of the emails I received today asking if Burke was behind the Leafs trade today. As I responded to many of you, he is still employed by the Ducks and would not anything unethical.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
The popular sentiment, at least until Brian Burke’s cellphone started ringing, was that his fingerprints were all over yesterday’s Toronto Maple Leafs trade.
“This is the fourth call I’ve had and you all have the same question,” he barked down the line from Boston, where he is visiting family for the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday. “No one from the Leafs talked to me about this, nor would it be appropriate for me to have any input. I am still officially an employee of the Anaheim Ducks.”
That could change by the end of the week, since an offer has landed in Burke’s hands.
Burke plans to stay in Boston until the end of the week but he will be talking to the Maple Leafs by telephone.
from Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
Winger Lee Stempniak was the rarest of commodities, a real offensive threat drafted and developed by the Blues.
So his departure for underachieving Maple Leafs Alex Steen, a versatile forward, and Carlo Colaiacovo, a rangy defenseman, is a bit of a head scratcher….
How could the Blues give up on a home-grown shooter who scored 27 goals two years ago and was producing at a point-per-game pace this season?
We’ll need some convincing in this corner of cyberspace. This deal sounds suspiciously like a Ron Caron trade, moving a potential standout for depth.
We’re not saying Colaiacovo is Murray Baron and Steen is Ron Sutter, but . . .
via Andrew’s Dallas Stars Blog,
Steve Ott is expected to miss one month with a broken hand. This happened in the fight with Steve Montador the other night.
You can watch the video at Andrew’s blog…
TORONTO (November 24, 2008) – Los Angeles Kings forward John Zeiler has been suspended for three games, without pay, as a result of a boarding incident that took place during NHL Game #295, Nov. 22 against the Colorado Avalanche, the National Hockey League announced.
Zeiler was assessed a major penalty for boarding and game misconduct for hitting Colorado defenseman Adam Foote at 6:51 of the second period.
Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, and based on his average annual salary, Zeiler will forfeit $8,770.17. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
For a more in-depth look at the Senators this week, check out SENShobo from earlier today, Rod Brodie at the Ottawa Senators.com site, plus some fire-sale rumors being discussed at the Sens Army blog. (Apparently there are people in the universe that think trading Daniel Alfredsson is a reasonable plan after just weeks after signing him to a 4-year contract extension. The mind boggles.)
Nick Kypreos on Fan 590 reporting the follwing trade: Alex Steen and Carlo Colaiacovo for Lee Stempniak.
added 1:50pm, St. Louis Blues President John Davidson announced today the team has acquired defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo and center Alexander Steen from the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for Lee Stempniak.
“We feel we have improved our club today for both the short and long term by adding Carlo and Alex,” said Davidson. “Carlo is solid two-way defenseman and will provide depth to our blueline and Alex can play center or wing and can score at the NHL level.” “Lee has done a tremendous job in St. Louis. He is a classy individual and we would like to thank him for all of his work on and off the ice that he has provided to the St. Louis Blues.”
Press release from the KHL:
The Disciplinary Committee of the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) recently met to discuss violations of the IIHF bylaws on player transfers in connection with the transfer of United States forward Matt Murley to the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) club Amur Khabarovsk.
Mr. Murley left the Carolina Hurricanes of the National Hockey League (NHL) and joined the Amur team of the KHL on October 10. The NHL informed the IIHF that the player had a valid contract with Carolina and had no right to enter into an agreement with any other club.
Complete explanation below. [Update: Plus added links down below]
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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