Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Aaron Lopez of the Rocky Mountain News,
People seem to have a lot of opinions of you, both good and bad. Do you really care what people think?
As a player, you just go out and play the game. As far as fans, I don’t think they know me as a person. They just know me as a hockey player. Whatever I do on the ice or whatever happens on the ice, that’s part of playing the game. It’s my obligation to do the best for my team each and every time I go on the ice. That’s all I really concern myself with.
from Craig Stancher of ColoradoAvalanche.com,
On Thursday, four pioneers of American hockey will be recognized by the Colorado Avalanche before the club drops the puck against the Boston Bruins.
Cammi Granato, Brett Hull, Brian Leetch and Mike Richter will be honored by the Avs prior to faceoff as part of the team’s opening night festivities. The following night, the four will be enshrined into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame as the Class of 2008 in a ceremony on the campus of the University of Denver.
Jay Grossman, the agent for Nikolai Khabibulin, told Hockeycentral it might take some time to find a fit for the goaltender with another team. Khabibulin passed through waivers last week and Grossman said he was surprised something didn’t get done with either another NHL team or one in the Continental Hockey League (KHL) in Russia.
Grossman has been granted permission by the Blackhawks to speak with other teams about his client and though he has had talks with several teams, Grossman has been unable to secure a deal. The Blackhawks were hoping Grossman could arrange a loan agreement with a KHL team that would at least alleviate the financial burden.
The regular season hasn’t even started yet and already Dustin Penner has pulled off what will likely be the most successful prank of the season. Last night, as the Oilers players and staff settled into their rooms at Jasper Park Lodge, Penner was busy getting dressed up in the scary mask from the “Saw” horror movie series. He went from room to room knocking on doors and scaring his teammates when they opened up. Ethan Moreau ended up with a choke hold on him and Kyle Brodziak nearly destroyed his own computer while attempting what Penner called “the flying crane” ninja move. Penner told me “this is just the tip of the iceberg”.
Here’s the story on audio, as told by the Oilers themselves. Great stuff.
TORONTO (October 8, 2008) – Chicago Blackhawks left wing Ben Eager has been suspended for three games, without pay, as a result of being assessed a match penalty during NHL pre-season game #81 against the Dallas Stars, October 2, the National Hockey League announced today.
At 9:45 of the third period, Eager was assessed a match penalty for attempt to injure Dallas player Sean Avery. At the time of the incident, Eager was on the players’ bench and swung his stick in the direction of Avery, who was on the ice.
from Dan Wood of the OC Register,
One of only four teams to have reached the conference finals twice in the past four seasons, the Ducks took a significant step toward addressing last season’s biggest weakness – goal-scoring – with the summer signing of unrestricted free-agent center Brendan Morrison. While he is coming off April knee surgery and eased into training camp, the former Vancouver stalwart looked strong in the final three exhibition games, recording a goal and four assists.
Morrison is being counted on to team on one scoring line with Selanne, who missed most of last season while on his own hockey sabbatical. Selanne looked nothing like his age, 38, during a scintillating exhibition performance in which he put up five goals and six points in four games.
more on the Ducks…
from Mike Brophy of Sportsnet,
So let me say this then: the Kings could miss the playoffs and may very well finish last in the West (I think the Islanders have the best shot at finishing last overall), but I’d rather be the Los Angeles Kings than the Toronto Maple Leafs, or the Islanders, or the St. Louis Blues, or the Vancouver Canucks, or the Colorado Avalanche.
The Kings are weak in goal, no question about it. But it’s not all about the guys between the pipes, even though neither Jason LaBarbera nor Erik Ersberg will never be mistaken for Patrick Roy. No, the entire team has to take credit for the Kings 28th-place finish in team defence last season.
from Spector at Fox Sports,
On Monday we looked at the team expected to finish in the top eight positions in the Western Conference standings. Here’s an analysis of the rest of the Western teams.
Calgary Flames. If “Kipper” regains his Vezina-winning form Calgary should be a playoff contender, but another sub-par performance by their top goalie and secondary scorers could douse the Flames.
Colorado Avalanche. The primary area of concern is in goal, where Peter Budaj and Andrew Raycroft attempt to prove once and for all they’re capable NHL starters. If they both struggle and the injury bug starts biting the roster again, the Avalanche postseason hopes could be in jeopardy.
from the LA Kings,
Los Angeles Kings right wing Dustin Brown will serve as Kings captain for the 2008-09 season, Kings head coach Terry Murray announced Wednesday. Murray has also named center Anze Kopitar and defenseman Matt Greene as assistant captains.
I come here and act like a child, and I’m going home and I’m telling my kids not to do what I actually did all day — goof around.
“I’m saying, ‘Get in the shower!’ ‘You have to go to bed!’ All I do here is act like they do at home, but that’s what I love about the game. We just act like kids all day long. It’s still fun.”
-Adam Foote of the Colorado Avalanche. More on Foote from Terry Frei of the Denver Post.
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