Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Rosie DiManno of the Torotnt Star,
Now that the league, in its belated wisdom – as future tense corrective, pending reports of hurry-up application – has addressed the havoc wrought by blind-side head hits, the next matter on the to-do list should be addressing pest control for the infestation of hockey by dirty vermin.
“The rat,” says Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke bluntly, when asked where league executives should next tilt their pointy heads. “The guy that won’t fight, or only picks the fights he thinks he can win. The rat will run a player from behind because he knows he won’t have to pay for it by somebody else retaliating.
“The instigator penalty, which I still support, has kept some of those rats out of the game, but not eliminated them entirely. And because of it, teams can’t self-regulate anymore when it does happen. So, for now I guess we’re stuck with the rat because I have no idea how to fix it.”
Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe on the Bruins game last night.
Unfortunately, the league said nothing about disciplining referees Paul Devorski and Ian Walsh for their gross mistake of giving Wisniewski only a two-minute minor penalty for charging Seabrook.
Maybe this will keep Devorski and Walsh from working the playoffs. We can only hope.
Devorski and Walsh also failed to penalize Corey Perry late in Wednesday’s game for that shove to Brent Sopel’s back that helped lead to the Ducks’ winning goal.
-Tim Sasson of Between the Circles at the Chicago Daily-HYerald.
from Eric Stephens of Ducks Blog,
In supporting the eight-game suspension of defenseman James Wisniewski late Thursday afternoon, Ducks GM Bob Murray said his player “crossed the line” with his hit on Chicago’s Brent Seabrook in Wednesday’s night game at Honda Center.
But Murray also took issue with Wisniewski’s punishment of eight games as handed down by NHL disciplinarian Colin Campbell following a morning hearing with the parties involved.
“First of all, we love the way Wiz plays and we want him to play the game hard,” Murray said. ”That’s how he has to play and he’s very effective doing that. In this instance, he crossed the line. He went too far and he knows he was going to get suspended. I applaud the league cracking down on these things.”
This via Pierre LeBrun’s Twitter,
Ducks GM Bob Murray just now on Quenneville: ``I strongly suggest Joel worries about his goaltending and stops trying to run the NHL.”
added 8:16pm, this from Chis Kuc’s Twitter,
More from Ducks GM Bob Murray: “I played in Chicago a long time. ... It used to be a black-and-blue town. It didn’t have whiners.”
First shift for both players, they drop their gloves and go at it.
Hopefully the end of the story.
via Pierre LeBrun tweet,
Confirmed 8 games for Wisniewski. Which means he waived his right to an in-person hearing which a player has a right to for five-games plus
added 6:41pm, Quote from Colin Campbell,
“Mr. Wisniewski delivered a retaliatory hit to the head of an opponent who never had possession of the puck,” said Colin Campbell, NHL Senior Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations. “The fact that Mr. Wisniewski is a repeat offender also entered into this decison.”
added 7:05pm, Bettman addressed the head hits, etc. in his weekly NHL Hour. Read about it at NHL.com.
added 7:07pm, via the Ducks PR department,
Statement from James Wisniewski on his suspension
“I am truly sorry that my friend Brent Seabrook was hurt on the play. I certainly wish him the best. I am, however, very disappointed in the length of the suspension. Eight games is incredibly hard to swallow, especially in comparison to other recent hits that have resulted in lesser punishment.”
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
So now John Tortorella has made it clear he wants the title of Ranger team captain as well as the ones of head coach and travel director he already owns.
He has made it clear that he not only wants to control what the players do on and off the ice, but also wants to correct what they think.
He tells the players to claim ownership of the locker room, but then simply repossesses it when he dislikes something one of the athletes says.
from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
As the regular season winds down, Blues center Keith Tkachuk realizes that it could be his last in the NHL. After 18 seasons, he is considering retirement following this season.
Tkachuk wouldn’t say this morning whether he has made his decision final yet, but the indications are that he’s strongly considering retirement. Either way, Tkachuk said he’ll make the decision “fairly quickly” after the season.
“I’ve got some thoughts running through my mind,” said Tkachuk, who will turn 38 on March 28. “You get older and you’re just not the same way you used to be. It gets a lot harder . . . guys are bigger, faster, stronger. But I know I can compete every night and go out and try to help out in different ways. I’ve played first line, I’ve played second line, I’ve played fourth line, I’ve played center, I’ve played wing. It’s a little different this year, but I still go into every game to prove that I can play and push other guys to perform. Like anybody else, you want to play as well as you can.
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
It has become an article of faith around the Canucks that Luongo is the team’s best player, its most indispensable player and its unquestioned leader. Since about the time he was named captain two years ago, in fact, a cult of Lui has taken root within the locker room and it seems to question the goalie is to question something inviolate within the Canucks.
Why is this?
The Canucks are the only team in the league which treats their goalie in such an exalted manner. Others — Marty Brodeur, Ryan Miller, Miikka Kiprusoff — are just as important to their teams. Others have recorded comparable or superior numbers. But the Canucks are the only team who chose to make their goalie the captain.
Luongo, moreover, is the only goalie of the post-expansion era to be so named, and that’s interesting because he’s never won a Vezina or taken his team past the second round of the playoffs. So why has this aura developed around him?
from Steve Rosenbloom of RosenBlog at the Chicago Tribune,
Predictably, the hit on Seabrook after the hit on Campbell has prompted calls for the Hawks to bring in an enforcer, or at least made people wonder where Dustin Byfuglien and Adam Burish were in exacting revenge.
Stop it. Just stop that talk right now. That’s the easy way out. It’s easy and wrong. Send out the cement head and give your opponent a power play. The Hawks aren’t a charity. They aren’t giving away five-on-fours. And in fact, it takes a stronger team to absorb abuse without retaliating. The Hawks’ revenge comes from scoring with the man-advantage. That’s how you intimidate in today’s game. Even the new guy, Nick Boynton, a tough character who will get a lot of time on the blue line now, understood. Boynton went after Wisniewski only at game’s end, saying he couldn’t challenge him earlier because the outcome was in doubt.
That has been the Hawks under Joel Quenneville. It’s a playoff style. Play hard, play fast, play disciplined. Skate and sacrifice. It works because the officials whistle the obvious penalties that teams use in trying to slow down the talented and speedy Hawks.
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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