Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Ian MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun,
St. Louis Blues’ coach Andy Murray had every right to be furious at the end of Friday’s 3-0 loss to the Vancouver Canucks; it appeared the actions of his player would cost Murray $10,000.
When Brandon Crombeen dropped his gloves at the final horn and attacked Kevin Bieksa after the Canuck defenceman cheaply tripped up the Blues’ winger, he could have been assessed an instigator penalty, which in the last five minutes of a game carries an automatic suspension for the offender and $10,000 fine for his coach.
Instead, referees Chris Rooney and Brad Watson assessed only a double-minor for roughing against Crombeen, which means he’ll be playing in Sunday’s Game 3 that St. Louis must win to stay in the first-round playoff series. Bieksa was penalized for tripping, and there was a secondary altercation between Canuck Steve Bernier and Blue Barret Jackman that drew fighting majors.
from Reuters via Yahoo,
American George Gillett is seeking a partner willing to invest $400 million into a sporting empire that includes Liverpool soccer club and the Montreal Canadiens NHL team, a newspaper said on Saturday.
The French-language La Presse, citing sources involved with the proposed sale of the Canadiens, said such an investment would enable the financially-pressed businessman to hold on to the teams.
La Presse said Gillett had proposed to several business executives that they invest $400 million and become a junior partner, but had generated little interest so far.
“They won the game and the only thing he (Tortorella) did was cry about the two [areas] we won—faceoffs and a penalty. He’s playing the whole game, and it’s pretty lame, quite frankly.”
“He’s talking about Nicky Backstrom, who was 48-percent. He was one of the worst centermen the first half of the year in faceoffs altogether. We went in and I talked to the league and the league said they are perfectly legal. So he’s just crying right now. It’s a dumb thing to cry about. We’re told not to do this, but he’s trying to play the gamesmanship and get the referees on their side. ...Give us a break.”
-Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau via Tarik El-Bashir of Capitals Insider.
from Fluto Shinzawa of the Bruins Blog,
Matt Hunwick has been transported from Ristuccia Arena via ambulance to an undisclosed hospital. Claude Julien said Hunwick has been hospitalized because of a spleen ailment.
Hunwick arrived at the rink this morning for a team meeting. Hunwick looked fine when he walked into the rink. According to Julien, Hunwick started feeling ill after he arrived, prompting the training staff to call for an ambulance. Two fire trucks and two police cars also arrived at Ristuccia.
“He didn’t feel very good, so our trainers did what was right and called an ambulance,” Julien said. “Hopefully we can get some good news here as we move on.”
added 12:14pm, via Elliotte Freidman at Twitter,
Hunwick taken to hospital with spleen injury. Julien says, “It appears to be under control.” Trainer wanted to take no chances.
added 7:45pm, Hunwick had his spleen removed and recovery is several months. Best wishes for a full recovery.
Can four teams build a 2-0 series lead by winning again today?
from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,
Mike Komisarek is not one of the Three Stooges.
The gritty Montreal Canadiens defenceman wants to make that clear to anyone who claims he gouged the eye of Boston Bruins’ Matt Hunwick after the final horn on Thursday night.
Informed that Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli had made that allegation and requested that the league review the incident, Komisarek broke into a sarcastic grin, the type that implied the message: “You’ve got to be (expletive) kidding me.”
On the record, Komisarek’s language was not quite as vulgar. But his response to Chiarelli was just as direct.
“It’s a bit of a ridiculous statement,” Komisarek said. “It’s the playoffs. Face-washes happen on every second shift in the playoffs. I don’t know if the kid (Hunwick) has soft skin. (But) I’m not Larry, Moe or Curly. I’m not trying to poke anyone’s eye out.”
from Teryy Jones of the Edmonton Sun,
Alex Burrows sits beside Roberto Luongo in the Vancouver Canucks dressing room. And he plays on the same line as Daniel and Henrik Sedin.
When you’ve recently played for the Baton Rouge Kingfish, Columbia Inferno and the Greenville Grrrowl in the ECHL, this is the kind of stuff you don’t even dare dream about.
When you are a bigger name in ball hockey than an actual hockey, playing on the No. 1 line on a top team in the Stanley Cup playoffs and sitting beside the great goalie/captain is pretty heady stuff.
“I was making $425 a week and living the dream,” said Burrows when he came off the ice for the morning skate prior to Game 2 of the series against the St. Louis Blues.
from Mark Everson of the NY Post,
Venue isn’t the only thing that has turned on the Devils. So have the tables.
They head to Raleigh, where they’ve lost their last six playoff visits, having conceded home-ice advantage. They may be without their captain, as well, for Game 3 tomorrow.
Brent Sutter sounded as if the Devils may have to manage without Jamie Langenbrunner for a while, after the captain left last night’s 2-1 overtime loss to the Hurricanes in Newark with what the team called a “lower-body injury.”“We’ll see as we go along,” Sutter said of the lines he revamped because of Langenbrunner’s absence. “Hopefully, Jamie will be right back. We’ll know more [today].“Besides performing his role as captain, Langenbrunner shared the team’s goal-scoring lead since New Year’s (24) with Zach Parise.
from Michael Russo of the Star-Tribune,
Ron Salcer, best known in these parts as the agent for free agent Marian Gaborik, accused the Wild of negligence Friday, saying it allowed one of his other clients, defenseman Brent Burns, to play six weeks with a concussion.
Acting Wild General Manager Tom Lynn disputed the substance of Salcer’s claims.
Burns, 24, was injured in practice Jan. 26 but wasn’t shut down until March 7. He is still affected with severe postconcussion syndrome.
“I met with Brent in L.A. [March 6],” Salcer said. “We’re having lunch with him and [fellow client Derek Boogaard] and he’s telling me about when he hit his head six weeks earlier. So I’m listening to him, and I’m incredulous listening to him.
“He’s telling me how, ‘Ronny, I’m an avid reader and I’m not able to read on the bus anymore. I get headaches that go all around my head. I can’t sleep. During the game, I’m not focusing. I feel like everything is happening, but I’m reacting slow. I go, ‘Brent, are you kidding me? You’ve got a concussion. You cannot play. You cannot play anymore!’
read on plus the Gaborik topic is brought up too…
from Jeff Gordon of The Hockey Guy at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
It’ll be tough for the Blues from here on out. They needed to win a game at Vancouver to have a realistic chance in this series, but they lost both.
The Canucks prevailed 3-0 Friday night, scoring a couple of classic playoff goals (Mats Sundin and Alex Burrows) plus an empty netter (Henrik Sedin). Chris Mason played well for the Blues, but not well enough.
Vancouver goaltender Robert Luongo was remarkable, robbing David Backes and Andy McDonald with especially outrageous saves….
An inch here, a bounce there and the Blues could have won this game and pulled dead even in this series. They put together offensive flurries in this games, as did the Canucks.
The Blues did a great job on faceoffs in key situations. That helped, but not enough.
The Blues frustration boiled over at the end, when the Blues dropped their gloves and got busy. The game ended with a major fracas.
Such is the nature of playoff hockey.
read on and below, watch the scrap at the end of the game…
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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