Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Ed Moran of the Philadelphia Daily News,
,,,Granted, the Flyers-Blues game was over the top, but in the 12 games played Saturday night, there were a total of 139 penalties called.
Does anyone but me think that this is out of hand or believe that referees today are trying to be a bigger part of the game than they should be? I’ve been on this rant before, especially after the lockout when the obstruction rules went into play. It was crazy in the first few months and then seemed to settle down.
Now it seems crazy again, and some of these calls - sorry, make that most - are really nitpicking, borderline BS….
This game is supposed to be decided by five-on-five play. Special teams are a huge part of it, but they should not be the determining factor in every single one. The league has to start looking at this again and find a way to rein it back in.
from The Universal Cynic,
TUC is still trying to figure out what Mr. Eugene’s deal is. One day he’s venting and applying completely inappropriate analogies to the Senators’ woes; the next he’s on the radio acting so sickeningly sweet and positive you’d think he was freelancing for Disney…or a chiropractor.
Look, I get that the guy has to pull for the team—after all, he’s the one who’s ponying up for them. But no one’s forcing him to open his mouth right now, and therein lies the rub. These days, Ottawa fans don’t want to hear that this team has a legitimate shot at a playoff berth, a lengthy post-season run, or God forbid, a Stanley Cup victory.
from Damian Cristodero of the St. Petersburg Times,
Two reviews in Friday’s 6-1 loss to the Flyers, both taking apparent goals away from Tampa Bay, were several minutes long and contributed to a game that took almost three hours.
“It can be detrimental to the product when the game takes so long,” Lawton said, adding he would like to see reviews completed in 90 seconds.
“You just don’t want to see it open-ended. If it takes four or five minutes, it is not conclusive.”
Lawton was clear he was not complaining about either of Friday’s decisions and said the league’s operations staff “are the most honorable people I’ve ever met.”
more on the Bolts…
from the CP via TSN,
Montreal also lost its goal-scoring leader, centre Robert Lang, likely for a long time as he had a tendon in his left heel sliced by a skate after a harmless looking hit into the boards on Stephane Yelle 8:33 into the third period.
And then winger Guillaume Latendresse left at 17:28 with what appeared to be a shoulder injury after he slid hard into the boards while checking Chuck Kobasew.
more on the Bruins 3-1 over Montreal today.
If you have access to the Bruins/Canadiens game that started at 2:00pm today, make sure to check out the the jerseys the Canadiens are wearing.
They were referred to as the ‘Barber Shop’ sweater almost a 100 years ago.
from Ted Leonsis of Ted’s Take,
Many fans that were rooting for Detroit are actually our season ticket holders. They are happy Caps fans and loyal customers and they root for the Caps always except when we play Detroit. When we sell out the bottom and top bowl, the club seats go on sale via Washington Sports and some of those tickets get sold as groups or online to Detroit fans.
It is obvious that we have made progress. Perhaps ten percent of the arena was rooting for Detroit at yesterday’s game. I won’t rest until we have 100 percent Caps fans in our building but I admire what Detroit has built in terms of fan loyalty.
from Terry Frei of the Denver Post,
All three Moore brothers, Mark, Steve and Dominic, have Harvard diplomas. It doesn’t take one of those to figure out that the NHL would frown on the Avalanche making a public display of support for Steve, who, after all, is suing a one-time fellow NHL player and an NHL team, the Canucks, and who tried to include other individuals (i.e., Brad May, Brian Burke, Marc Crawford) in an original suit that was tossed out in Denver. But I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: The Avalanche should tell the NHL to mind its own business and plan to honor Steve at a home game in March.
It’s probably poor taste to bring this up, but it wouldn’t be a bad public relations move for a franchise that increasingly needs it and has taken deserved criticism for turning its back on a former player in a sport that takes pride in its one-for-all ethic in the dressing room and on the ice. I’d say do it at the March 4 game against Detroit, because that probably would be a sellout, anyway, and thus the team couldn’t be accused of making the move only to sell tickets. The problem there is that many Red Wings fans would be among the crowd and wearing red that night, so I do think the Avalanche could justify holding the Moore night at another game.
from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun,
For some reason, Kiprusoff is not getting his due around the league for the Flames fortunes.
The critics, especially those who don’t watch the unflappable Finn mind the twine for Calgary night after night, are quick to point out his higher-than-expected goals-against average (2.76, tied for 25th best in the league prior to yesterday’s action) and lower-than-usual save percentage (.905, good for 27th place).
Despite a league-leading 30 wins—which gives him a shot at becoming the first goalie in NHL history to reach 50 in a season—Kiprusoff’s success is pinned on playing for an upper echelon team nearly every game.
The argument may be valid, but Kiprusoff warrants more respect than he’s receiving.
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
If you strapped Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland to a chair and jabbed him full of truth serum, he’d say he wants to keep his hoss, Marian Hossa, more than his Mule, Johan Franzen, if Holland only has so many dollars to spend.
Franzen developed a cult following in Detroit after those 28 goals in his final 32 games last season, including the playoffs, and he’s followed it with 22 in 43 games this year, six of those game-winners. That’s 50 goals in 75 games, but Hossa, 30, is the world-class talent, almost a point-a-game player (695 points in 749 games).
If Hossa says he’ll play the next six years in Detroit for an average cap hit of between Henrik Zetterberg’s $6.1 million a year and Datsyuk’s $6.7 million, Holland is dancing. If Hossa wants to play hardball, then Holland will go to his Plan B, Franzen. Yet, while Franzen often looks like John LeClair from his Legion of Doom glory days with Eric Lindros with his bullish ways around the net, there’s a gnawing feeling that the 225-pound Swede benefits greatly from the cast around him.
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
Maybe it was unrealistic to expect him to make an immediate impact. Maybe it was unrealistic to expect him to step in and be the player we last saw in Toronto.
But, by any reasonable standard, he’s been here long enough to acclimatize himself to the NHL grind and bring his conditioning and timing up to an NHL standard. And not only has he failed there, he’s actually hindered the Canucks’ attempts to get on track.
Against the Wild, the final line told you all you needed to know—just over 17 minutes of ice time, minus-one, no points, three shots on goal, none of which resembled a scoring chance, and two more minors to his rapidly increasing PIM total.
But what that ledger doesn’t reveal is the number of times he was put in a position to make a difference; to change the momentum of the game or to sustain momentum in the Canucks’ favour. Alain Vigneault gave Sundin every chance to succeed, every chance to leave his imprint on this game. And each time he failed.
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org