Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Don Brennan of Off The Posts at the Ottawa Sun,
Don’t shed too many tears over what is now the inevitable departure of Dany Heatley.
The Senators will be better off without him.
Sure, his goals will be missed. But the millions the team saves on his salary will buy back some goals, and maybe even some character.
That last quality, Heatley lacks….
Some team will give up some talent and devote a large chunk of its cap budget to you.
If not, I fully expect you to hold out of camp next September, until a deal is worked out. You remind me a lot of Alexei Yashin, Dany.
added 2:04pm, from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Speculating about the possible destination of Dany Heatley, in the aftermath of his trade demand from the Ottawa Senators, will eat up much time between now and the NHL’s entry draft in 16 days’ time. Two factors will make it difficult for Senators’ GM Bryan Murray to make a good trade for the disgruntled forward:
from Tom Gulitti of Fire & Ice,
Here’s a list of possible candidates to succeed Sutter (in no particular order) and my take on their chances of getting the job.
Jacques Lemaire: He’ll be 64 years old in September. He stepped down in Minnesota after nine years, but apparently would be interested in coaching again. He turned down a recent offer to be a consultant in Tampa Bay, saying he had another opportunity he was pursuing. He said when he resigned from the Wild in April that he’d coach again for a GM he knew. That, obviously, would include New Jersey. There’s talk, though, that he’ll end up as an assistant in Montreal or join Bob Gainey’s management staff.
Larry Robinson: I think Robinson was done being a head coach in the NHL when he stepped down for stress-related health issues in December of 2005….
from KC Joyner of The Fifth Down at the NY Times,
It isn’t just that there have been missed calls that is troubling. It is also the alarming lack of consistency. Stu Hackel may have put it best in his June 3 post on the Slap Shot blog when he said, “And the officiating standard is inexplicably loosened, then suddenly tightened.” From game to game, it has been next to impossible to tell what the officials are going to call and what they aren’t.
What may be most troubling about the inconsistency is how many commentators seem to be glossing over the issue or, even worse, giving it a blind eye altogether.
The NBC analyst Darren Pang might have epitomized this best in his postgame review last night when, while getting ready to criticize the officials for a missed call, he said that “the referees have done an outstanding job” this postseason. That obviously isn’t the case, but he isn’t the only one who doesn’t want this part of the game to put a damper on what has otherwise been a really good series — the NHL seems just as culpable.
added 9:13am, from David Staples of The Cult Of Hockey,
This time the Penguins got away with one.
A very, very big one, Ruslan Fedotenko’s hook on Detroit defensive ace Nicklas Lidstrom, that led directly to a crucial Pittsburgh goal.
It happened in the third period, the Red Wings down by only one goal, but on Pittsburgh’s home ice in Grade Six of the Stanley Cup Finals.
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
But of the key players on both sides who have battled in two straight Cup finals and are likely to be the difference on Friday night at The Joe, none have ever been in this exact situation before.
Not Nicklas Lidstrom, Henrik Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk, Johan Franzen or Chris Osgood.
Not Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Sergei Gonchar, Jordan Staal or Marc-Andre Fleury.
“Now it’s anyone’s game,” said Crosby last night after his team’s gutsy 2-1 victory in Game 6. “Our team has proven we’re a true team.”
from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
The plays these guys make in tight are impressive, as are the plays they make defensively to turn it into offence. These guys were unbelievable to watch all night - they had five of the 12 shots that were blocked by the Red Wings, they’re terrific when they don’t have the puck, they’re magical to watch when they do, and it’s going to be terrific to see a Game 7 showdown between the best of the Penguins and the best of the Red Wings.
Really, offensively on the night, you noticed Datsyuk and Zetterberg a lot more than you did Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin but as I said, the supporting cast ruled the day, and Pittsburgh’s was a little better.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
What is the measure of a team’s will to win, to stay alive?
Is it measured in 13.2 seconds of chaos at the end of a 2-1 game with Pittsburgh defenseman Rob Scuderi blocking a sure goal with his shin guard and netminder Marc-Andre Fleury desperately sweeping his arm to block a loose puck inches from the goal line?
Is it measured in bulling your way to a 2-1 victory as the Pittsburgh Penguins did Tuesday night despite the fact their best players, Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby, were held off the score sheet for the second straight game?
If those are the touchstones for how you measure will or character, the Penguins proved they are a team that possesses those qualities in great measure as they denied the Detroit Red Wings a chance to duplicate last year’s feat of celebrating a Stanley Cup win on Mellon Arena ice.
Friday, 8:00pm at the Joe Louis Arena for the Stanley Cup!!!
added 11:06pm, from Bob Duff of the Windsor Star,
It will be the first Game 7 final in Penguins history and the first for the Wings since 1964.
“It’s the old cliche,” said Detroit winger Kirk Maltby. “Everyone gets tired of hearing about it, but it’s one win at a time.
“You can’t get too far ahead of yourself - which I think maybe we did.”
Just as in Game 5 of last spring’s final, when the Wings came home to Joe Louis Arena up 3-1 and positioned to take the title, the Penguins rose up and posted a stunning victory.
They were the better team most of the game.
Detroit will have a chance to close it out again in on home ice Friday, but they were left again wondering why they couldn’t get the job done the first time around.
added 10:43pm, Watch live streaming of the press conferences below…
from Steve Politi of the Star-Ledger,
The Devils proved this year to have plenty of skilled offensive players. Why squash that with a coach like Lemaire, who at 63 is nearing the end of his Hall of Fame career anyway?
Lamoriello has an opportunity to develop his own Hall of Fame coach now, someone who could run this young team from behind the bench for more than just a season or two.
John MacLean asked out of the Devils once before. Give him this opportunity, and you get the sense that unlike too many of his predecessors, he’d be the right fit—and in it for the long haul.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
Here are things we will be looking out for in tonight’s Game 6 of the Stanley Cup finals between the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins:
1. The Fleury factor
Can Marc-Andre Fleury shrug off his Game 5 performance in which he was yanked after giving up five goals on 21 shots? He will have to be every bit as good as he was in Games 3 and 4 or the Pens are cooked. Most important, he cannot allow a soft goal as he did when he failed to corral Dan Cleary’s long wrist shot in Game 5. But Penguins coach Dan Bylsma and Fleury’s teammates believe the young netminder has the right personality to do just that. We’ll see.
2. Looking for backup
Anyone other than Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby care to add a little scoring help? Bill Guerin, Ruslan Fedotenko, Maxime Talbot and Chris Kunitz, the four wingers who normally play with the two big centers, have combined for just three goals…
From Jeff Schultz at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
And then there’s the Teflon Don.
“I put myself in good company,” he said, managing a smile.
He’s employed. He’s fortunate. He knows that.
More than likely, if he worked in a bigger hockey market and for owners who cared about the sport and maybe something other than the next court hearing, he’d be out of work. So you could say heading an after-thought of a franchise has its benefits.
But I had to ask: Aren’t you surprised you still have a job?
“Not at all,” he said. “We’ve had to deal with a lot of adversity here . . .”
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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