Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jim Kelley of Sportsnet,
All across the league, coaches are using embarrassment as a form of motivation. Benching or outright banishing to the press box is usually the first step. If that’s been done or is not an option (as in the case of Toskala or in another case, half the Edmonton Oilers roster) public chastising is your typical Plan B.
Edmonton’s Craig MacTavish has done it countless times. Mike Keenan could lay claim to inventing it had he not learned if from Scott Bowman. Montreal’s Guy Carbonneau has done it repeatedly this season. John Tortorella was famous for it back in Tampa and would surely be doing it again if a general manger with a losing team had the courage to hire him.
Less than a week after being placed on the injured list, Edmonton Oilers defenceman Lubomir Visnovsky’s season is over due to an upcoming surgery on his injured labrum.
The 32-year old will have surgery on his injured right labrum on Thursday. The procedure will be performed by Dr. Robert Balyk in Edmonton.
from Cassie Campbell of Blogs and Columns at CBC,
So, the big question: could Balsillie be the new owner of the Phoenix Coyotes?
He has the money and he definitely has the passion for the game of hockey. With that combination shouldn’t the NHL want him on board? I believe so.
It all will depend on the NHL’s flexibility to allow a new owner to help the franchise as it is in Phoenix, BUT if the team continues to struggle financially, there should be a clause in the contract that after a certain number of years, the team can move to a more suitable market.
I completely understand why the NHL doesn’t want to give up on a franchise in Phoenix - they don’t want to disappoint fans or make it seem that when a franchise struggles the quick solution is movement. But when all is said and done, and the city of Glendale continues to be unable to support a hockey franchise, new options are inevitable.
NHLPA boss, Paul Kelly, supports moving a franchise from a struggling U.S. market back to Canada, which therefore means the players do, too.
from Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star,
As he worked his way through the packaging, Marcel Pronovost couldn’t remember being this curious about a gift since he was a child.
When he reached the bottom and opened another tiny box, he felt like a kid again too.
Staring back at him was a glittering version of the 2008 Detroit Red Wings Stanley Cup ring with his name on one side with four extra diamonds symbolizing the quartet of cups he won with Detroit in the 1950s.
“My reaction was instantly to flashback to those teams,” said the 78-year-old Pronovost, who was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1978 after a 21-year playing career and five cups with the Wings and Toronto.
Pronovost was one of 20 to 30 retired Red Wings to receive a gift last week.
from Puck Daddy,
...We caught up with Malkin after Sunday’s game to discuss his growth as a player and a leader; the Pittsburgh Penguins’ playoff hopes; his $1,000 bounty for a victory; the brutality of Flyers fans; his reconciliation and all-star prop comedy with Alex Ovechkin; and, perhaps most interestingly, why he doesn’t understand why teammate Sidney Crosby is labeled as “some kind of ‘mama’s boy.’”
PD: We’re doing this interview in Russian, which must be a nice change from your English-language interviews after games that some fans find amusing. How is your English coming along, and do you feel any pressure to learn it quickly?
MALKIN: To be honest with you, I don’t feel any pressure. And the team is trying to help me out and try not to schedule too many [English language] interviews with me. I myself try to be on the sidelines and try to give interviews without being stressed and just trying to be comfortable. And once again, thanks to the team, they are helping me a lot. And it’s not like there are 100 TV cameras in the locker room after the game surrounding me. I am taking it slow, but there is still visible progress.
from Stan Fischler of Game On,
Let’s face it, SOMEBODY must energize the New York sextet, which not only appears as forgetful about scoring as it does about winning hockey games.
In the wake of New Jersey’s 3-0 win (third goal an open-netter) at The Rock on Monday night, the Rangers now are attracting scrutiny beyond the Metropolitan Area and the reviews are indubitably harsh ... but on target.
Versus analysts Keith Jones and Brian Engblom were surgically precise and exquisitely succinct in their harsh reviews of the Seventh Avenue sextet.
“The Rangers,” says Jones, “are in trouble.”
To a certain extent, that is true. Their record stands 29-20-5. That’s better than at the same time last year, but frankly, The Maven is tired of using that comparison because if the Rangers continue the current trend, they’ll be on a treadmill to NHL oblivion.
via the NY Rangers,
On Tuesday, the Dallas Stars assigned forward Sean Avery to the Rangers’ American Hockey League affiliate in Hartford. The following are statemtents from Avery and Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather:
STATEMENT FROM SEAN AVERY:
“I would like to thank Glen Sather and the Rangers organization for giving me the chance to resume my hockey career by affording me this opportunity with the Hartford Wolf Pack. I am looking forward to getting back on the ice, working my way back to the NHL and playing the game I love. While I appreciate the many interview requests, at this point in time, I would like to focus on hockey and will not be making any further statements while with the Wolf Pack.”
STATEMENT FROM GLEN SATHER:
“Sean and the Dallas Stars approached me looking for an American Hockey League team for him to resume playing, and I am happy to provide him with the opportunity to continue his career. Sean was a good player for the Rangers during his time here and has worked extremely hard off the ice over the last two months. He remains under contract to and property of the Stars, therefore, any further comment would be inappropriate.”
from Brian Stensaas of the Star Tribune,
Spit at by Chris Pronger. Challenged to a fight by Chris Simon. Talked contract negotiations with Olli Jokinen.
These aren’t exactly your everyday situations for the casual Wild fan. But for Ben Fagerlie, so it goes….
He has no inside connections, nor does he loiter at visiting team’s hotels to gain a rapport. Rather, for the past six seasons, Fagerlie has watched Wild games from Section 104, Row 2, Seat 8—where only a half-inch-thick piece of tempered glass separates him from opponents in the penalty box.
Two minutes or 10, Fagerlie chirps at players whether they’re interested in what he has to say or not. And he never backs down, withstanding everything from saliva to threats from the millionaires who, for a time, occupy the seat directly to his right.
from Stephen Whyno of the Washington Times,
The ice was disgusting,” Poti said after the game. “Every game here, it is an embarrassment. That’s why so many guys get hurt with groins. It’s a shame, to be honest with you.”
And while coach Bruce Boudreau and defenseman Mike Green said the ice wasn’t particularly worse than other games, the subject of ice conditions was a touchy subject Monday at practice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex.
Poti said he wasn’t going to talk about the ice anymore since he “said his piece” about the subject already. Sergei Fedorov said he didn’t feel comfortable talking about the playing conditions because he and his teammates were told not to discuss it.
“We just had a meeting. We’re not really allowed to comment… because we don’t wanna say something that will cause a problem,” he said. “We know for sure people who work and try to make ice better are working very, very hard, so let’s keep it that way.”
added 7:41am, On Frozen Blog has more on the ice conditions…
from Chuck Gormley of the Courier Post,
With Marty Biron ($3.5 million) and Niittymaki ($1.225 million) scheduled to become free agents this summer, there is very little chance both will be back next season.
Neither would render much of a return in a trade. The market for goalies is relatively thin this winter, but there are a handful who will become unrestricted after this season, including Chicago’s Nikolai Khabibulin, Colorado’s Andrew Raycroft, Edmonton’s Dwayne Roloson and even prodigal son Brian Boucher.
The Flyers might be better off letting Biron and Niittymaki duke it out and direct their attention to a hard-edged defenseman.
With Ossi Vaananen currently in Stevens’ doghouse (less than 5 minutes of ice time the past two games) and Braydon Coburn not as dominant as expected, the Flyers could use a no-nonsense 25-minute-a-night defenseman to pair with Kimmo Timonen.
The top defensemen on the market are Florida’s Jay Bouwmeester and Anaheim’s Scott Niedermayer and Chris Pronger.
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 email@example.com