Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Cassie Campbell of CBC,
Will Daniel and Henrik Sedin ever receive the respect they deserve? They have been called the Sedin sisters on occasion and I’m sure a few other ‘nicknames’ too, but let’s face it, they are both true superstars in the NHL.
Like Steve Yzerman, who was so often criticized as a player and leader until he won the Stanley Cup, the Sedin twins will probably feel the same wrath until they and their Vancouver Canucks bring home Lord Stanley.
At 29, they are still in their prime and based on their statistics this year, even though both players have played a shortened season due to injury, they have to be put into that elite category of players in the league.
from John Glennon of the Tennessean,
Cinderella, meet Cinderella.
There’s no indication officials will begin tonight’s game between the Predators and Phoenix Coyotes with that kind of introduction, but considering the circumstances it might be appropriate.
Heading into the season, it would have been hard to find a neutral hockey observer who saw much potential in either team.
Nashville was coming off a 10th-place finish in the Western Conference and made little noise during the offseason. Phoenix was coming off a 13th-place finish and was trying to recover from a disastrous offseason that began when former owner Jerry Moyes declared bankruptcy in May.
NEW YORK—Beginning with tonight’s games, the National Hockey League will implement a new rule prohibiting “a lateral, back-pressure or blind-side hit to an opponent where the head is targeted and/or the principal point of contact.”
Under the new rule, the NHL Hockey Operations Department is empowered to review any such hit for the purpose of Supplemental Discipline.
“We believe this is the right thing to do for the game and for the safety of our players,” Commissioner Gary Bettman said after receiving unanimous approval from the Board of Governors as well as the endorsement of the NHL/NHLPA Competition Committee and the NHLPA Executive Board. “The elimination of these types of hits should significantly reduce the number of injuries, including concussions, without adversely affecting the level of physicality in the game.”
from Tim Sassone of Between the Circles,
The last thing a Blackhawks fans wants to do is root for the Red Wings, but it’s probably the right thing to do these last few weeks of the season.
If the playoffs started on Thursday, the Hawks and Detroit would meet in the first round, which is not what anyone at the United Center wants.
The Red Wings are hot, however, and ended play Tuesday night eighth in the Western Conference with 87 points but only 3 points out of fifth place.
The Hawks would much rather face Los Angeles, Nashville, Colorado or Calgary in the first round than the experience and dangerous Red Wings.
NHL On The Fly discussed this hit from David Backes against Brian Rafalski last night and said the NHL will be watching for these types of hits.
You have to keep your eye on Rafalski as he dumps the puck in towards Conklin.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
Usually unflappable Marc-Andre Fleury swung his stick at his right post in disgust after giving up the shootout winner to Mike Knuble on Wednesday night, an act of frustration that might as well have been on behalf of his entire team.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are winless in nine games this season versus the two Eastern Conference teams they have to worry about most come playoff time, the New Jersey Devils (0-6-0) and Washington Capitals (0-1-2).
The reigning Cup champions have one such game left in the regular season, an April 6 meeting against the Caps in Pittsburgh, to restore some measure of confidence. I know they have the Cup rings from nine months ago, but you can’t tell me having lost all 10 games to Washington and New Jersey could not play on their minds entering the playoffs.
from Aaron Portzline of Puck-rakers at the Columbus Dispatch,
Blue Jackets president Mike Priest confirmed to The Dispatch on Wednesday that the Blue Jackets expect to qualify for a full share of revenue-sharing from the NHL this summer. That check could be worth $10 million, or more.
This marks the second straight season in which the Blue Jackets have met the two thresholds to qualify: an average attendance of 14,000 or more (the Jackets average in excess of 15,000) and a revenue growth rate ahead of the NHL average.
Two years ago, the Blue Jackets were dinged for failing the revenue growth rate standard, and it cost them $2.25 million out of their revenue check.
Priest said the money this year—like previous years—would be put back into the hockey side of the business, in other words player payroll, scouting, etc.
from Jay Greenberg of the NY Post,
Just how many of these Rangers, after Gaborik, Henrik Lundqvist, Staal, Michael Del Zotto, Callahan, and probably young Artem Anisimov, should they want to go forward with?
Of course they will stick with Drury and Sean Avery, who will be paid for their character, if not point production commensurate with their salaries. Brandon Dubinsky is signed for next season, when he’s going to have to play consistently harder than he did in this one.
The Rangers, who will have to spend on role players to replace the ones they will let go, could use an influx of young, cheap, rising talent while big-tickets run out. They probably have one prospect, Hartford winger Evgeny Grachev, who has a chance to step into their lineup next season.
One game at a time, the players said last night, after so far playing exactly just one game. Still down five points to Boston, which has a game in hand, the Rangers don’t dare look too far ahead.
Meanwhile, it was less painful for the fans enjoying a rout of the Islanders to do exactly the same.
Daniel Sedin with a lob shot.
from Christopher Botto of NHL Fanhouse,
It looked good. It looked really, really good.
“I think it’s amazing,” said legendary Rangers and Oilers captain Mark Messier, now an executive with Manhattan’s hockey team. “To me, it’s another breakthrough in how hockey can be presented.”
“It looks spectacular,” said Islanders owner Charles Wang, who watched his team give up three early goals in three dimensions in a 5-0 loss to the rival Rangers. “Hockey stands to benefit from the technology ... maybe more than any sport.”
Oh, there were some mild complaints that there wasn’t a “wow” factor, that the 3D telecast crew didn’t show off enough, instead opting to make sure the 2,000 ticketholders, VIPs (Chloe Sevigny!) and guests saw the puck at all times. Other than an opening segment in which announcers Dave Maloney and Joe Micheletti appeared to reach through the screen with hockey sticks, the show was gimmick-free.
from Dave Lozo of NHL.com,
The broadcast of Wednesday’s game between the Rangers and Islanders at Madison Square Garden was aired by MSG Network in 3D, the first time a hockey game has ever been shown in that format.
Everyone from players to announcers were jumping off the television screen before and during the game. When the Rangers took the ice, it was as if they were jumping onto the ice and into your living room.
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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