Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bob Smizik of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
So is it Fleury or is it the team concept?
“I will say it is a combination of both,” said coach Michel Therrien. “First of all, Marc-Andre, he’s really square to the puck. The game slowed down in front of him. That’s normal. Well, he’s only 23, but he has got a few years of experience and you ask any goalie with time and experience, and the game slows down in front of you so he doesn’t have to make those big saves when he’s out of position.
“And in the meantime, we’ve played a much better defensive game as well. You put those two together, and you get the result that defensively you are better.”
There’s no question Therrien’s coaching style has helped Fleury, just as it would help any goalie.
from Tom Reed at Puck-rakers,
Why are the Penguins 10-1 overall and 7-0 at home in the playoffs? Because they have outrageous depth. Coach Michel Therrien isn’t afraid to play his fourth line in a tie game with less than 12 minutes left.
“That’s huge for us,” captain Sidney Crosby said. “That has been the story for the playoffs so far. Those guys have stepped up. And by “those guys,” I mean, the guys on the third and fourth line have come up with some huge goals, and have played well for us even if they haven’t showed up on the score sheet sometimes. They create a lot of momentum for us. Those guys, they are going to make the difference between winning and losing lots of times.”
from Tom Benjamin’s NHL Weblog,
I don’t think Don Cherry is right when he linked the attendance “problems” in Detroit with their style of play, but I think he does have a point. Despite all the raves about the European style and the “puck possession” game, this group is giving new meaning to the phrase the Dead Wings. The Detroit game is not very entertaining to watch.
from Jamie Fitzpatrick at Jamie’s Hockey Blog,
For all their formidable talent, the Red Wings and Penguins are winning with efficient, well-organized hockey. If they keep it up, we could see an efficient, well-organized Stanley Cup Final. Maybe they’ll serve tea and crumpets.
The first two rounds of these playoffs were fantastic. So what’s the problem?
Are Detroit and Pittsburgh so much better that they can win games at three-quarter speed?
from Rich Hofmann of the Philadelphia Daily News,
Single-handedly, shorthandedly, Richards gave his team life. Alone, unassisted, Richards turned a game where his team still wasn’t good enough into a game where his team still had hope.
It is a remarkable quality that some athletes have - rising above the adversity. It is about skill and it is about effort and it is about backbone - and nobody ever doubted Mike Richards in any of those categories, and nobody would think of doubting him now.
He will allow, quietly, “It’s frustrating.” But that is it as far as his obvious public disappointment will go. He is very clinical in his dissection of a hockey game, even a game as big as this one. There is no pretense, no false bravado.
Asked what has to improve for Game 3, he says: “Similar things to what we did tonight. We just need to play better and more consistent throughout the game. We still feel we can play a little bit better and get more consistent.”
from Mike White at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
John Challis yawned.
“Smiling so much makes me tired,” he said.
A Freedom High School athlete dealing with terminal cancer, John couldn’t stop grinning during his experiences last night at Mellon Arena. The Beaver County teenager’s recent successful at-bat in a varsity baseball game has gained national attention, and last night he was a guest of the Penguins for their National Hockey League playoff game against the Philadelphia Flyers.
The Penguins brought John, his parents and younger sister, Lexie, to the game in a limousine.
via Mike Heika of Dallas Stars Blog at the Dallas Morning News,
The league just confirmed.
There are some fines involved, but both Ribeiro and Osgood are good to go for Game 3.
That’s important for the Stars, particularly if Lehtinen is hurt and can’t play.
Ribeiro was quite feisty today, so it will be interesting if he transfers that energy to the ice.
added 7:07pm, Sorry for the back to back posts on this topic. At least we used different sources!
from Bruce Garrioch at Off the Posts,
The talk is Florida Panthers GM Jacques Martin is going to turn to an old friend for the coaching post in the Sunshine State.
Sources told me today that Pittsburgh Penguins assistant Andre Savard has emerged as one of the top candidates for the vacant coaching post with the Panthers.
a little more...
An Interview With: D. Tippett, M. Modano, M. Ribeiro, M. Turco, B. Richards…
Q Hear anything on Ribeiro?
COACH DAVE TIPPETT: Haven’t heard anything from the league yet, no.
Q How do you prepare if you don’t hear anything until tomorrow?
COACH DAVE TIPPETT: We’ll hear something today. I don’t suspect anything. I suspect he’ll be a player. Looking at the situation, I can’t see how it would be a suspension, myself, but that’s for them to figure out. And from our side, I’m going to prepare like Ribeiro’s a player and move forward.
from John Kreiser of NHL.com,
Chris Osgood doesn’t have the flash of Detroit teammate Dominik Hasek. He’s not a spectacular puck-handler like Dallas’ Marty Turco, his rival in the Western Conference Finals. He’s a solid goaltender who doesn’t do anything extraordinarily well.
Few goaltenders in any era can match Osgood when it comes to winning games. He was 27-9-4 during the regular season while splitting time with Hasek, and improved to 8-0 during the playoffs with a 2-1 victory over the Stars Saturday night in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals.
Flyers coach John Stevens and Penguins coach Michel Therrien met with the media earlier today…
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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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