Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Rich Hammond of Inside the Kings,
Jack Johnson has been participating in full practices with his teammates this week, but he is wearing a yellow (non-contact) jersey. Johnson says nothing has changed and he won’t be back from his shoulder surgery until after the all-star break, but…I don’t know. Watching him skate, it’s hard to believe he’s going to stay out of the lineup for another two months.
We’re going to look at the whole situation, look at what we have, what we have in the minors and figure out what steps need to be taken.
“We’re not playing as good as we can play right now, and we’ve got to figure it out right away. It’ll get so far out of hand that we won’t be able to reel it back in.”
Sunday, a Blues team that should have been fatigued from having lost to Edmonton a day earlier in St. Louis instead showed all the energy.
“After maybe the 10-minute mark in the second period, we stopped competing down low,” Anderson said. “That was a team that played yesterday. They just dominated us down low in our zone.
“We’ve got to compete more. We stopped competing.”
-Thrashers coach John Anderson afer losing to the Blues today. Read more from Mike Knobler of the AJC.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
Finally, though, it looks as if the Kings’ latest rebuilding effort is going to take. They have a general manager, Dean Lombardi, who did not panic when the youngsters did not immediately start winning. Unlike many of his predecessors, he did not start trading away some of them along with draft picks in the vain hope of selling more tickets in a fickle market.
Now that the longest-running problem — goaltending — appears to have been solved with the promotion of rookie Erik Ersberg, the Kings can think about the playoffs for the first time in seven years. They have 12 players 25 years old or younger and they are starting to show the consistency needed to turn an aggregation of talent into a forceful team.
Stan Fischler writes in his post-game column after the Rangers lost 4-0 to the Panthers today…
My theory is that the Rangers, for no particular reason, do poorly in day games.
“We’re paid to win,” is Renney’s answer. “Day or night.”
I also pointed out to both the coach and Lundqvist that, historically, home teams rarely win right after Thanksgiving. You know; too much turkey; too many family distractions.
“I’m Swedish,” Lundqvist shot back, “I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving!”
from Jeff Z. Klein & Stu Hackel of the New York Times,
A hockey cliché maintains that a two-goal lead is the worst lead a team can have. Still, the truth was that in the N.H.L., a team with a two-goal lead almost never lost. But not this season. Now it seems almost no lead is safe.
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Teams have regularly stormed back against big and small leads alike. Seesaw games are a regular feature and holding any lead is a risky matter. On the same night earlier this month, Pittsburgh and Calgary sprinted to 5-0 advantages, only to escape with one-goal wins that came down to the final buzzer.
FRISCO, Tex. - The Dallas Stars announced today that the club has acquired defenseman Andrew Hutchinson from the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for right wing Lauri Tukonen, who is currently playing for Lukko Rauma in the Finnish Elite League. Hutchinson is expected to join the Stars in time for their upcoming two-game road trip to Calgary and Edmonton.
Four games today, but only two televised. Still better than watching the Detroit Lions, even though they don’t play today!
from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,
What we have here now, amid Garden sellouts Friday afternoon and last night, is reason to believe. Actually, many reasons to believe. To wit:
1. Claude Julien. His coaching thus far has been masterful, among the keys the standard he set with the yanking of a gritless Phil Kessel from last year’s playoffs. The only real motivating tool a coach has is his control of ice time. Lack of production has to be met with lack of allotted playing time, be it minutes or situations (line combinations, power-play time, etc.). Julien’s X-and-O scheme is simple, straightforward, and the minutes he doles out are earned, not granted.
read on with additional hockey topics…
from Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
Hall of Fame center Ron Francis is fond of telling about the time he asked Mario Lemieux how he prepared for training camp, and Lemieux responded that, about a month beforehand, he stopped ordering french fries with his club sandwich.
But such attitudes and actions are no more a part of the NHL today than bench-clearing brawls and the Oakland Seals. Conditioning coaches are a staple of every team’s staff, and they have more than a passing interest in what players consume.
“I’m always preaching nutrition and trying to get the right things in you,” said Mike Kadar, who fills that role for the Penguins.
He does not, however, have a comprehensive list of foods that bears his stamp of approval. And, if he did, there’s not much chance that winger Eric Godard’s meal of choice would show up there.
Kadar, you see, is one of those folks who simply doesn’t recognize the nutritional merits of an occasional fried peanut butter-and-banana sandwich.
from Tim Sassone of Between the Circles,
Paging Marty Havlet. Paging Marty Havlat. Please report to the front of the net.
OK, maybe that’s a bit harsh. And I like Marty, but where the heck was he on the six-game road trip that ended with a thud Saturday afternoon at Staples Center?...
Havlat is frustrating the Hawks and don’t be surprised if GM Dale Tallon starts shopping the winger, who is making $6 million to not be a difference maker. Havlat is going to be an unrestricted free agent after the season and there’s no way he will be asked back. No chance. None.
Up until now I thought the Hawks needed Havlat to make the playoffs, but now I don’t think they do. Maybe there’s a team out there that wants to take a chance on him and would offer a player in return. You just can’t give Havlat away at this point.
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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