Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the CP via the Globe and Mail,
Mike Keenan appealed to his players’ pride and captain Jarome Iginla called on teammates to prove the Flames have the depth to stave off elimination from the NHL playoffs despite their injuries….
After the game, Keenan blamed himself for not preparing his team better and Iginla, with one shot on net, called his own performance “terrible.”
Keenan shifted the burden of responsibility to his players Sunday.
“The team should be prepared to respond to any situation that arises,” Keenan said. “Be prepared to play to their level of ability and the expectations we have of them and more importantly what they have of themselves.”
Donald Brashear with a hard hit on Blair Betts today.
Brashear received a 2 minute minor for roughing as did Paul Mara of the Rangers.
Elbow, shoulder, late hit or just a clean hit?
Betts has not returned to the game and no report on his condition.
from Jeff Z. Klein of Slap Shot at the NY Times,
Schoenfeld talked about what triggered Tortorella’s outburst, which was caught by Verizon Center security cameras and which led to the N.H.L.’s suspension, levied at 10 o’clock Saturday night. In suspending Tortorella, the league said that the coach squirted water at fans, then had a drink thrown at him from the stands, then threw a bottle that struck another fan.
“I’ll tell you, I know the heart of the guy, and I know the thing that triggered him,” Schoenfeld said, then referred to the Verizon Center fans behind the bench area. “It wasn’t any sling they threw at him, and there were many. It was something they said about one of his players.”
Schoenfeld continued, addressing reporters: “And you guys, it’s easy to say that you’ve got to keep control or you’ve got to keep it in check, turn the other way, that there are rules. But there’s a certain part of your being when you’re a coach, and it’s just like being a parent. There are certain things you’ll put up with when people slander your kids, and there’s a certain line that people cross. And that’s what happened with John,” he added.
added 2:17pm, also from Jeff Z. Klein of Slap Shot,
Just before Game 6 Sunday afternoon, the Rangers released a letter to N.H.L. Commissioner Gary Bettman from G.M. Glen Sather, asking that the Washington Capitals be disciplined for failing to control the actions of their fans in the incident that led to the one-game suspension to Rangers Coach John Tortorella for squirting water and throwing a water bottle at fans late in Game 5.
The letter alleged that fans spat on Ranger bench personnel, shouted homophobic remarks about Rangers players and screamed in Tortorella’s ear. The letter said that Verizon Center security guards and ushers did nothing when asked by the Rangers bench personnel to restrain the fans.
continued, copy of the letter can be read there…
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
• The Minnesota Wild have a growing list of interested candidates on their radar for their vacant general manager position.
But it has put owner Craig Leipold in bit of a bind….
If he were to hire a rising star such as Paul Fenton, the Nashville Predators assistant GM, people might think Leipold is dipping into an old well because he used to own the Predators.
• If Bob Gainey made things tougher to deal for Tampa Bay’s Vincent Lecavalier after his rip job on Lightning GM Brian Lawton, here’s one other destination to consider: the Los Angeles Kings….
• The Florida Panthers might trade Jay Bouwmeester’s negotiating rights a few days before July 1, when he becomes a free agent.
But could they get any more than a third-round draft pick?
more hockey notes…
from NYI Point Blank,
You can bank on this. If the Red Wings scouts truly knew Datsyuk and Zetterberg were going to be perennial all-stars, they would never have waited so long to take them. They might not have used a first or even a second round pick on them, but they would not have chosen Jari Tolsa (120th overall), Andrei Maximenko (149th) and Kent McDonell (181st) with their only three draft selections before tabbing Zetterberg.
Before they finally drafted Datsyuk, they would not have used rounds 2-5 to take Ryan Barnes, Tomek Valtonen, Jake McCracken, Brent Hobday, Calle Steen and Adam DeLeeuw.
The Datsyuk and Zetterberg picks were amazing. They were the stuff of which champions and legendary scouting careers are born. But don’t think teams - even as great as Detroit - have the ability to make a habit of it. Datsyuk and Zetterberg are the only A-list NHLers the Red Wings have produced in the late rounds since 1995. Other than the since-waived Kyle Quincey and maybe Darren Helm, they haven’t drafted any B-listers in the late rounds in the last 14 years either.
from Dan David of NewYorkRangers.com,
No Rangers team has ever lost a playoff series that it led 3-1, going a perfect 12-0 in such situations (perhaps because the opponent had to win some desperation games in front of New York’s fans).
There is also the matter of Game 6 history. Over the past 10 seasons, two-thirds of all first-round playoff series that one team led 3-2 ended in Game 6. Since 1998, only one in three teams faced with the Capitals’ current situation—at home or away—has managed to force a Game 7, and more than half of those teams (56 percent) still went on to lose the series.
more on the Rangers…
The Rangers and Devils can move on to the 2nd round with victories. Will they?
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
• After watching Mike Green and Joe Thornton in the playoffs, can’t imagine how either will earn a place on Canada’s 2010 Olympic team. The better the hockey gets, the more invisible they become. You can get your offence from the back end with Dan Boyle and Scott Niedermayer without having to gamble on Green.
• On the other hand, can’t imagine a Canadian team without the incredible Niedermayer, Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks. In fact, wouldn’t Rick Nash fit in perfectly on a line with Getzlaf and Perry?
• The one-time stiff Nik Antropov has made himself into quite the player. He will be a free-agent prize of sorts in July, if he doesn’t re-sign with the New York Rangers before that.
more hockey nuggets…
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
All in all, if you were expecting the Pens to be a one-shot deal, they’re proving it’s not going to happen that way. Having Crosby and Malkin, and probably Staal and Fleury as well, means this team is always going to have a core that will keep it in the thick of things, or at least it will as long as that group stays whole.
That said, they may end up grappling with Eastern Conference champion Boston in the next round, which would be a terrific struggle.
But while you might have made the B’s heavy favourites a week ago, you wouldn’t today. These Penguins are tougher than they might at first appear.
from Norman Webster of the Montreal Gazette,
Much of the time it seems to consist of forwards skating into the goaltender’s crease after he has frozen the puck and giving him a hard stare, as Paddington Bear used to do to those who incurred his disapproval. The whistle has gone, nothing whatever can be done to advance the play, but this staring, accompanied by the usual obscenities, is supposed to bring great advantage to the perpetrators.
The defenders do not like this. They retaliate by rubbing opponents’ faces with the palms of their gloves - “face-washing,” it’s called, although if you have ever dipped your nose into a working hockey gauntlet you may question the term “washing.” The defenders, too, loose the usual insults, while the linesmen run around throwing their bodies in front of potential punches (is there any other sport which so shamefully degrades its officials?). Of course, this brings Montreal’s sophisticated fans out of their seats every time.
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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