Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Gare Joyce at Sportsnet,
The end of September looms and we’re entering the silliest season: that stretch when NHL teams start trimming their rosters and sending some teenagers back to their junior teams. I call it the silliest season, because it’s “some” and not “all” teenagers and because, with the lessons of history, NHL general managers should know better.
Many folks were amazed that Sidney Crosby scored at better than a point-a-game rate in his rookie season. I wasn’t surprised by that. Maybe even more impressive is the fact that he managed to take a regular shift the whole season without injuries knocking him out of the line-up.
from Wayne Fish at phillyBurbs,
Hatcher, who’s starting the year on the injured reserve list, knows his crippled knee probably won’t get better.
Heck, it got worse over the summer when he wasn’t playing, and he would like to end his career on his own terms.
The reality of the situation is this: While some conspiracy theory types suggest the Flyers are pressuring Hatcher to call it quits now to save money on a badly strained salary cap number, the 36-year-old player says the decision is up to him….
“As tough as it is, you’re never prepared to stop playing hockey. If this is it, I’ve had a great career and that’s what I’ll take.’‘
from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,
Born in California to a father of Brazilian-German heritage and maxing out at 5-foot-11, Ryan Hollweg knows all about overcoming the hockey odds.
Whether he can help turn around the fortunes of the Maple Leafs this year is unknown, but he certainly has the right attitude. Hollweg got off to a rousing start with several big hits in a 7-4 win over the Buffalo Sabres Monday.
“If you want to go through somebody, just do it. It’s how I’ve lived,” Hollweg said yesterday at the Air Canada Centre. “I’ve never worried about how big I am. It’s a mental thing. It hasn’t stopped me yet and it won’t stop me now.”
from Mark Everson of the NY Post,
“We’re looking to turn things around this year. Last year, we weren’t happy with the result,” John Madden said of being ousted in five games in the first round by their rival neighbors.
Even Brent Sutter would not downplay the revenge motive tonight, despite the fact that each side will dress partial teams.
“There always has to be a mindset within your team that this is a rivalry,” Sutter said. “The young players will find that out. You expect it to be a highly-intense game.”
from Lightning Strikes,
Bear with me here, even though this is more speculation and reading between the lines than anything.
We read in Tuesday’s paper that hockey ops chief Brian Lawton said he would not hesitate to keep star Vinny Lecavalier and defenseman Paul Ranger out of at least the season opener Oct. 4 in Prague if their rehabbing right shoulders were not ready to go. He said he might even put them on injured reserve to help the team manage their numbers. That’s a big hint not to be taken seriously, especially after watching Jussi Jokinen star at center this preseason.
“I know there’s a lot of people this is going to bother, obviously. But you can’t let it stop you in your tracks. This is a good organization that’s going to work hard to overcome something like this.
“We’re not going to sit there and feel sorry for ourselves ... it doesn’t make any sense. If you feel sorry for yourselves, where do you get yourselves? We’re not going to do that. We’re going to go forward.”
-Blues President John Davidson on the year-ending injury to Erik Johnson. More on the Blues at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch….
from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
Blues defenseman Erik Johnson has a torn ACL in his right knee and will undergo surgery in a couple of weeks, a source has told the Post-Dispatch.
Johnson, 20, is expected to be sidelined six to nine months after injuring his knee in a golf-cart incident last week at the Lake of the Ozarks.
from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,
Marian Gaborik was nowhere to be seen today.
Negotiations are clearly at a delicate juncture, very delicate. The two sides are far apart, although Risebrough said he plans to keep trying to get Gaborik inked to an extension. He again maintains he has had no trade talks and doesn’t plan any in the foreseeable future.
The irony here is the big risk in paying Gaborik Ovechkin money or Crosby money or Malkin money or Staal money or Lecavalier money is he’s so injury prone.
And here Gaborik is seeking to be paid like a top two or three player in the NHL while he’s out with a strained quad aggravated on the first day of training camp.
more on the Wild…
Darren Dreger during Leafs Lunch on AM640 reports John Muckler is in Phoenix today and will be joining the Coyotes as a consultant.
from Kevin Allen at Mucking & Grinding,
The Atlanta Thrashers are still pondering a move to land a defenseman, and Anaheim’s Mathieu Schneider would seem to be a logical choice if the Thrashers can fit him into their budget.
The Thrashers are only near the $41 million mark, and based on their off-season moves they don’t want to venture too far north of that figure….
Of course the Thrashers would have to convince Burke to probably take Ken Klee ($1.25 million) and another $500,000 player to make it work.
added 12:07pm, from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
When Schneider is dealt, it’s possible it could be rolled out to a larger deal. Some teams have inquired about forward Bobby Ryan’s availability and the truth is Ryan, the second overall pick in the 04 draft behind Sidney Crosby, may be expendable on this Ducks’ roster.
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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