Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jennifer Green of the Ottawa Citizen,
In seasons like this one, Mike Fisher thinks of the message he jots on his hockey sticks, the same one that helped him over an even tougher hurdle—success.
Inside the stick’s rubber grip, he has written Rom 12:12, referring to Paul’s letter to the Romans: “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”
“It’s just a verse that I’ve always liked ... ‘Be glad in all God’s planning for you’,”
Fisher said after the practice on Monday. “Sometimes, even this year, you go through struggles on the ice, and it’s just to keep things focused on God. Things seem to make a little more sense.”
from Dan Barnes of the Edmonton Journal,
Kevin Lowe and then Steve Tambellini settled into a seat at Rexall Place to watch their Edmonton Oilers practise on Monday morning, and one thought came to mind.
Shouldn’t those guys be on the phone? In fact, shouldn’t they have made a trade already? Shouldn’t they be in the middle of sending draft picks and/or cheap young players out for a proven scorer coming back?
In a word, yes.
And to be fair, they are trying. They want to make a deal for a point-producer who would immediately slide into Dustin Penner’s first-line slot on the left side. They need somebody to trade the puck with Ales Hemsky and score off the rush and they’re prepared to surrender quality assets to make that deal.
from Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun,
Filip Kuba has a no-trade clause in his deal, but he, Chris Neil and recently acquired Mike Comrie will be eligible to test the unrestricted free agent waters July 1. Murray will deal at least Kuba and Neil if he can’t get them to agree to contacts before the March 4 deadline.
At this point, it looks like they’re both as good as gone.
Asked specifically about the security of Jason Spezza, whose no-trade clause on his deal doesn’t kick in until next season, Murray said: “He’s our No. 1 centre. I’m not going to get into specific names. I don’t think that’s fair to the player, really, other than the guys that are unrestricted (free agents).”
A “he’s going nowhere” would have been so much simpler, if it was definitely the case.
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
What will Burke do? The guessing game has begun. The trade focus—and the following information—comes from NHL executives polled, those not connected to the Leafs, speaking about those who may be available.
Listed is the likelihood (by percentage) of certain Leafs being traded before the March 4 trade deadline:
from Erik Erlendsson and Martin Fennelly of the Tampa Tribune,
With Tampa Bay spending the next week in Canada, trade rumors are sure to run rampant as the March 4 trade deadline approaches.
But Vinny Lecavalier’s name won’t be at the forefront.
In his boldest statement in his short tenure as Lightning general manager, Brian Lawton may very well have put an end to any lingering rumors surrounding Lecavalier by stating the Tampa Bay captain won’t be going anywhere, as far as he’s concerned.
“We’re not going to trade Vinny Lecavalier,’’ Lawton said Monday. “I’m going to say, ‘never,’ so I don’t have to deal with it.’‘
from John Glennon of the Tennessean,
When Shea Weber hammered home 10 goals in the first 20 games of the season, he became the first NHL defenseman to do so in more than two decades.
The problem was that those numbers drew the attention of opponents and media around the league, which were two of the bigger reasons Weber’s goal production stalled over the next few months.
Rival coaches concentrated their efforts on finding ways to stop Weber’s feared one-timer, and journalists immediately turned him into a trendy pick for the next Norris Trophy winner.
from The Good, The Bad And The Duthie,
The night John Tortorella was hired by TSN, I made a confession to him. I told him I had always secretly hoped he’d be fired by Tampa, just so we might get a chance to bring him on the panel.
He swore at me. But he was smiling as he cursed.
No coach has ever brought me more amusement than Torts. His post-game news conferences were often better than the game.
“We need a BLEEP BLEEP occasional save. Four goals on 16 shots, I’m getting tired of the 25 percent rule.”
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
The moment John Tor torella walks through the door of the Ranger locker room today to take command, that will be the end of the excuses and that will be the end of the crutches for a team whose players sure didn’t seem very sorry to see Tom Renney go yesterday.
from David Staples of The Cult of Hockey,
In Oil Country, the fans are in one of those deep dips on the rollercoaster ride. Everything is dark and down. Angry comments abound. No one is happy, and my own mind turns to thoughts of what might have been this season.
If only Dustin Penner and Craig MacTavish had been on the same page.
If only Kevin Lowe had brought back Curtis Glencross.
If only Sam Gagner, Robert Nilsson and Andrew Cogliano had found a way to pick things up where they left off last year.
If only Gagner and Erik Cole had been put together on the first day of training camp.
from Sean Gordon of the Globe and Mail,
Tonight, the Canadiens will attempt to notch back-to-back victories for the first time in more than a month, and they’ll do it with Jaroslav Halak between the pipes.
Habs coach Guy Carbonneau said he wants to ride the hot hand, and explained his decision in terms that could foreshadow a goaltending controversy in Montreal.
“I think I’ve given enough chances to Carey [Price] and enough time to come back from his injuries … now it’s up to Jaroslav to show what he can do,” Carbonneau said, adding “we have no choice” but to play the Slovak.
from Mark Whicker of the OC Register,
They could expand the Pronger trade talks to ask for a higher-paid veteran. Or they could be a major free agent customer in the summer.
Defensemen Jay Bouwmeester (Florida), Jordan Leopold (Colorado) and Mike Komisarek (Montreal) will be out there, as well as some interesting forwards like Brian Gionta (New Jersey), Daniel and Henrik Sedin (Vancouver). Or Johan Franzen and Marian Hossa (Detroit).
In anticipation of economic woes and perhaps a lost season, the Ducks are freezing prices on everything, including parking and concessions, for ‘09-‘10.
But isn’t it still Feb. 24? Aren’t there 21 games left?
Sure, the Ducks have a games-in-hand problem and a general lethargy problem, but they are only five points out of the No. 5 seed in the West.
Why give up totally on a team that has so many playoff merit badges, so much perceived star power?
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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