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Category: NHL-Teams

Pressure On Turco

from David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune,

It’s up to Turco to determine how legendary Niemi becomes, a reality he accepts more than embraces.

“My personality and the way I handle things I don’t see pressure being a problem,’’ Turco said. “Goalies and quarterbacks in Dallas are under the microscope a lot.’‘

When Turco replaced Ed Belfour full-time with the Stars in 2002, Belfour was three years removed from having won a Cup in Dallas. The residue from this Cup championship remains fresher in a town still celebrating Kane’s game-winner. I think there’s still a Philly cheesesteak in the back of my refrigerator from the Cup finals.

“It’s totally different for me,’’ Turco said. “(But) the more important thing is it’s still me, still my game. Things that are out of my control may be huge differences. But the things that are in my control are pretty similar.’‘


Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: marty+turco

Imagine The Leafs Winning The Stanley Cup

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

...Let’s get serious here, there ain’t no Stanley Cup coming to Toronto this season. Still, it’s telling coming from Versteeg’s perspective that winning a Stanley Cup in Chicago last season, and reviving a great Original Six city in the process, would not compare to what it would mean in this city.

In no way is that a disrespect to Chicago, its great fans, the anthem experience and arguably the loudest rink in the NHL. But it’s a reminder of what the game means here north of the border, and in a city that has had little to cheer about when it comes to the team that matters so darn much to them.

“It’s nuts,” Versteeg said. “I haven’t even been in the city for three weeks yet and people already recognize you and know who you are. It’s pretty crazy. It shows how much they want to win. They come up to you and talk to you about it. It’s almost like every person in Canada is a coach, they know the game so well.

“But it’s true—this is our game, it’s a Canadian game, and they want winners in Canadian cities.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: kris+versteeg

All Brian Leetch

from Joe Brescia of Slap Shot,

Q. What players do you enjoy watching?

A. Plenty. Ovechkin, Parise, Gaborik, Crosby, Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Green, Del Zotto, Keith, Seabrook and Lidstrom. The forwards all compete at a high level and have the ability to play well in every zone. For every game, the other teams’ goal is to not allow these players to beat them. The defensemen all move the puck well, are great skaters, anticipate and support the play and play a lot of minutes.

Q. How do you think John Tortorella is doing as the Rangers’ coach?

A. I think Torts has been great. He was an assistant while I was there and actually was head coach for a few games. I liked his direct approach. His style of play is fun for most players. I loved playing his style, pressuring the puck and not allowing any space to the opposition. You have to be in great shape but it also eliminates standing flat-footed, trying to read and react. It’s more initiate and react.


Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brian+leetch

The Tallon Plan

from Harvey Fialkov of the SunSentinel,

Tallon is the seventh Panthers GM this decade to claim he has the tools to build a Stanley Cup champion. He’s the first with such a recent blueprint.

That’s why the longest-tenured Panther, Stephen Weiss, didn’t hesitate when Tallon phoned him in early June asking if he wanted to stay.

“He told me he’s here for the long term like he had in Chicago and that ‘we’re going to do the same thing here,’” said Weiss, a Panther since 2001, a year after the team’s last playoff appearance. “I told him absolutely, this is where I want to be.’‘

Weiss’ longtime teammate Nathan Horton had a different response to Tallon’s question, and was soon traded to the Bruins.

Tallon’s philosophy sounds a lot like another South Florida builder, Bill Parcells, who recently stepped down as the Dolphins’ architect, but remains a consultant for the team. Both believe that the draft is the key to success, and then surround the youngsters with veteran mentors who are tough, passionate and filled with character.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dale+tallon

Evening Line

“What he’s done, first off, is he’s built a really deep (management) team, with succession. Dave Nonis is a GM all by himself, Dave Poulin is a GM in waiting, Claude Loiselle has been an assistant GM, we’ve got the greybeard and wise man in Cliff Fletcher, really, really a deep, deep team.

“Then he set about changing the culture of the team. I’ve never seen a GM that had a really clear vision of what kind of team he wanted. I’ve worked with seven of them, which might say something about the longevity of GMs at our place, but he’s got this clear, clear vision—goalies, defence, four lines, all that. I’ve never heard it, basketball, soccer, hockey, as clear as him. ...

-Richard Peddie, MLSE President and CEO, on Leafs GM Brian Burke.  More from the CP at TSN.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: richard+peddie

A Wide Open Race

from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,

The Hawks should still be a good team, but a repeat? Not a chance.

Which means we’ll go into this season much like the last one, with no earthly idea which team will walk away with the Cup next June.

Only the Islanders and Panthers seemed locked into awfulness in perpetuity. Otherwise, over the past decade, pretty much every team has had a healthy taste of success, and in the five years since the salary cap was instituted only the Sharks, Devils and Red Wings have managed to avoid missing the playoffs at least once.

Teams like Pittsburgh and Washington, once doormats, are now at the top. The Capitals have the most exciting team in the game with the most exciting player and, because they are supported annually by double-digit dips into the revenue sharing bucket, they’ve become a financially viable franchise. Not to mention a legitimate Stanley Cup threat.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

What’s Next For Sheldon Souray

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

If they find a trade partner, say, a month into the season when a team is looking for a tough-minded, offensive blueliner, the Oilers would still have to recall Souray. He would then go on re-entry waivers and any club putting in a claim could get him for half his salary. It might not be the team they’ve been dealing with, but the Oilers are prepared for any and all scenarios. If they lose him for nothing and half to pay 50 per cent of his remaining salary, so be it.

Tambellini said owner Daryl Katz is fine with paying Souray not to play for the NHL club. “I think Daryl Katz has been extremely consistent with his message to do what’s best for the organization,” said Tambellini. “That support has been incredible.”

“There are numerous things that have happened with this organization over the last six months, on the ice and off the ice (captain Ethan Moreau was put on waivers and claimed by Columbus; they chose not to bring back Fernando Pisani, dealt Patrick O’Sullivan, let Robert Nilsson go to Russia). We have complete support.”

Tambellini doesn’t know how long he’ll have to wait to find a deal Souray. “I can’t say. General managers speak on a weekly basis and if somebody expresses an interest I’ll listen,” said Tambellini, who said Washington didn’t ask for a specific commitment on how long Souray would be on his farm club. “He’s completely comfortable with whatever happens.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sheldon+souray

Rookies To Watch

Some of the Globe and Mail hockey writers answer the following question…

Which National Hockey League rookie will have the biggest impact this season?


Take a pen. Jot down this name: Oliver Ekman-Larsson. When your buddies ask you which NHL rookie is going to have a whiz-bang season, tell them it’ll be the Phoenix Coyotes’ first-year defenceman Ekman-Larsson.

Yes, there are more celebrated rookies out there (Taylor Hall, Tyler Seguin), but at 19 Ekman-Larsson comes with size (6 foot 2, 176 pounds) and a polished game.



Filed in: NHL Teams, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: oliver+ekman-larsson

Injury May Force Ian Laperriere To Retire

from Chuck Gormley of the CourierPost,

Flyers’ Ian Laperriere has been told by two doctors that he should end his 15-year NHL career because of post-concussion symptoms and nerve damge, the Courier-Post has learned.

RW Laperriere, 36, visited with Pittsburgh neurosurgeon Joseph Maroon on Friday and it was determined that the puck he took above his right eye caused nerve damage behind the eye that could be permanently affected if he continues playing. A Philadelphia doctor offered a similar opinion on Monday, Laperriere said.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ian+laperriere, ian+laperriere

Under Consideration For The Hart

From Jim Kelley of Sportsnet,

Washington defenceman Mike Green; who is already great and poised for perhaps his best season ever. Teammate Backstrom had a 101 point campaign and is capable of playing better.

Steven Stamkos has already arrived as a goal scorer (51 last season) and could do even better if he becomes the beneficiary of a return to form from Tampa Bay center Vincent Lecavalier.

(Patrick) Kane has room to grow in Chicago and Martin St. Louis should have at least one more good push year in his system and could benefit most from the innovations expected from new coach Guy Boucher.

The talented Ilya Kovalchuk might also have a shot if new coach John MacLean, an offensive-minded player during his years in the league, can scrape off a few of the defence-first shackles that appear to be holding the New Jersey Devils in check.

read on for Jim’s top five Hart candidates…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com


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