Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post,
In his 18th NHL season, Avalanche captain Adam Foote finally brought back a gift from a road trip that really pleased his kids: Avs rookie Matt Duchene, who immediately became the household’s No. 1 scoring threat in mini-sticks hockey.
Hey, this new addition to the family is better than a puppy.
“We adopted one, eh?” said Foote, who recently acquired the prized 18-year-old draft pick to live with two sports-loving young boys whom he and his wife already had at the kitchen table.
How’s it working out so far?
Well, Foote came home after work and discovered his favorite cushy seat had been claimed by a teenager on the very first night Duchene moved in.
“He’s sitting in my spot on the couch, which I wasn’t too happy about,” Foote said with a chuckle. “But we’ll figure it out.”
“I was trying to set small goals first, I wasn’t expecting to see my name up with the league-leaders. That would have to be the best game of my career, certainly statistically. The stars lined up for me and my linemates tonight.
“It feels really good. I don’t know the last time I was on a team that bounced back from down as much as we were. That’s one of the games where you know the true meaning of momentum.”
-Dustin Penner of the Edmonton Oilers after a 5 point night (2g, 3a). More on the game from the CP at the Globe and Mail.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
Rangers general manager Glen Sather recently offered Chris Chelios an AHL contract to play in Hartford, but the veteran free agent defenseman rejected that offer to sign a deal with the Chicago Wolves in order to be closer to his family, The Post has learned.
“We’d talked a number of times over the summer, and I talked to Torts [head coach John Tortorella] at the U.S. Olympic evaluation camp, but they told me the Rangers were going in a different direction with their kids,” Chelios told The Post by phone. “I see that their guys are off to a good start, but if they’re looking for veteran help down the road, I’d love to play there.
“I appreciate the offer to play in Hartford, but I decided to sign with Chicago because that’s where my parents live, and it means a lot to me that they’ll be able to come see me play.”...
“I don’t think I’ve ever had a bad game at Madison Square Garden,” said Chelios. “If the Rangers need help and are interested, Chicago shouldn’t be too far away for them to come take a look.”
from John Vogl of the Buffalo News,
Biron investigated a similar option in Buffalo. Backup Patrick Lalime was coming off a down year and two offseason surgeries. Starter Ryan Miller is scheduled to play for Team USA in the Olympics. Biron saw a team that likely would give him ample starts in the crease.
“We were fairly serious,” Biron said of talks with the Sabres. “Negotiations are what they are. To be honest with you, this wasn’t about money, not anything other trying to get a fit into where I would be able to play and compete, put myself in the position where on January 1 I can look for a long-term deal with the organization that I’m with, or come July 1 next year I’m at the top level where I was last year.
“This was a very unique year just because of the Olympic year, because there’s a lot of games. I knew that a situation like Buffalo would have been a situation where I would have gotten to play some games, maybe more than usual. But at the same time, this situation [in New York] was giving me the best chance to play on a regular basis.
“I was very excited about possibly having a chance to come back, but in the end, you make sacrifices to be at the top level you can.”
Thrashers goaltender Ondrej Pavelec would like to have this one back.
from Brad Ziemer of the Vancouver Sun via the National Post,
Toronto general manager Brian Burke says he sees no need to clear the air with Vancouver counterpart Mike Gillis over tampering allegations when the Canucks meet the Maple Leafs on Saturday at General Motors Place.
In fact, Burke isn’t even sure whether he and Gillis will speak at all this weekend.
“I know there was a lot of yapping going on in Vancouver the last little while, but you noticed none from Toronto,” Burke said in a phone interview Thursday when asked about the apparent bad blood between the two organizations. “I’m certainly not going to pour any gasoline on a fire that as far as I’m concerned doesn’t exist. When other organizations talk or complain about the Leafs, I ignore it by and large.”
TORONTO (October 22, 2009) – Anaheim Ducks forward Evgeny Artyukhin has been suspended for three games, without pay, as the result of a slew-footing incident against Dallas Stars defenseman Matt Niskanen in NHL game #117, Oct. 21. Niskanen sustained an injury on the play.
The incident occurred at 4:23 of the second period. No penalty was assessed on the play.
Artyukhin, who was suspended for two games January 19, 2009, now is considered a repeat offender under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Accordingly, Artyukhin forfeits $34,756.11 in salary based on the number of games (82) in a season, rather than the number of days (193). The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
from Jim Kelley at Sports Illustrated,
At first glance it sounds like something out of a Vince Vaughn movie: “Crease Crashers—the sequel to Wedding Crashers and every bit as outrageous!” Except we’re talking hockey here and running goaltenders in the crease isn’t funny and it can be dangerous.
Like most things in the NHL, the how and why isn’t really at issue. Goalies, well-padded but arguably as defenseless as a punter in the path of a half-dozen onrushing linesmen, are being overrun across the NHL. It appears to be a tactic and the league is at least giving lip service to doing something about it.
Though it hasn’t officially been added to the agenda for next month’s general manager’s meetings, enough GMs are lobbying to get it there. That alone doesn’t provide for any real hope to putting a stop to the nasty tactic.
continued plus some Chelios/NHLPA talk…
from Brian Duff at NHL.com,
While not every team is dealing with the same magnitude of trauma, sometimes it needs to be spelled out just how widespread the injury bug is spreading.
By my count, through Wednesday’s games, we are looking at more than three teams’ worth of players that have, are, or will miss some (or sometimes significant portions) of this season.
And even the “short-term” ailments can’t be swept aside, with the knowledge that once bitten, the injury bug can linger, re-appear or wreak havoc down the road.
So, in an effort to catch your attention, here’s a look at the all-injured teams of October. Yes, some players have returned, BUT you can’t replay the games they have missed.
from Steve Rosenbloom of Rosen Blog,
The Blackhawks lost their captain and then lost their poise. The Hawks then lost the lead, lost one of their top two defensemen, and finally lost the game on a stupid play in the defensive zone by two of their best offensive players.
Man, the Hawks will go to any length to take your mind off the goaltending mess, eh?
Thing is, goaltending wasn’t the problem against Vancouver Wednesday night. In fact, Antti Niemi, the backup who starts because big-money starter Cristobal Huet is bad, was the answer most of the night for the confused, abused and diffused Hawks. He made enough point-blank saves that if alleged No. 1 Cristobal Huet was in there, his goal-against average might’ve hit double-figures.
And besides, it wasn’t Niemi’s fault the Hawks choked another 5-on-3 advantage that could’ve turned a one-goal lead into a three-goal win.
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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