Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jim Gintonio of the Arizona Republic,
Coyotes General Manager Don Maloney looks at the Olympics as great entertainment for hockey fans
but at the same time wonders about the overall benefits of having NHL players participate. That includes the risk of injury as well as the rationale for shutting down the season for two weeks.
“(For) the NHL, at least at this stage, there is no tangible financial benefit,” he said. “We all enjoy the Olympics, love to watch it, but I personally like the amateurs. I like the unexpected.
“It’s all revenue, television revenue. If they had some tangible benefit other than the good will of seeing the best players - we all enjoy that, the fans love it - but I think there’s some really hard discussions going forward to see whether it makes sense for this league to shut down.
from J. Freedom du Lac of the Washington Post,
The streak has vaulted the team to the top of the NHL points standings. Add a zesty marketing campaign from franchise owner Ted Leonsis and a loud, thrill-a-minute fan experience inside the downtown arena and, suddenly, in a region starving for something—anything—resembling pro sports success, the Capitals are Washington’s most buzzworthy team, to the point that people are daring to wonder if this might someday become a true hockey town.
The result is wild success—and a certain sense of resentment among die-hard fans who see the newcomers in the crowd as Ovie-come-latelys.
from Kevin Mitchell of the Leader-Post,
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper played reporter Friday night with a couple of iconic story subjects.
Harper, a hockey buff who was in Saskatoon for the Kinsmen Sports Celebrity Dinner, grilled hockey greats Gordie Howe and Wayne Gretzky during a lengthy Q-and-A session before an appreciative sellout audience.
Howe was a surprise addition to the podium, brought onstage to a prolonged ovation while Harper and Gretzky talked about the first meeting between the two puck legends—at a Kinsmen celebrity dinner in Brantford when Gretzky was 10.
continue for some great stories from Howe and Gretzky…
Per CBC Jeff Marek’s Twitter, Detroit trades Ville Leino to Philadelphia for a 5th in 2011 and Ole-Kristian Tollefsen.
The two teams not playing today are Anaheim and Washington.
First puck drops just after 1:00pm ET today, view the full NHL schedule below.
“Trades happen. Some people might think they got stronger, some might think they didn’t. It’s all in the eye of the beholder.”
The Devils scoring will “possibly” be better, Pronger said, “but I don’t know what’s it’s going to do to their defensive abilities . . . He’s certainly a guy who can put numbers up. I don’t know if his lack of playoff experience in Atlanta will affect him or not. I guess time will tell.”
-Chris Pronger of the Flyers reacts to the trade of Ilya Kovalchuk to the Devils. More reaction from the Flyers by Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
via John Glennon of the Tennessean,
Predators Coach Barry Trotz is looking for a little more commitment on both ends of the rink from veteran forward J.P. Dumont.
That message was delivered Thursday, when Dumont saw just 8:45 ice time on the fourth line, and elaborated upon Friday.
“He’s got great hockey sense and he’s got that great ability to see the ice,’’ Trotz said of Dumont. “But you have to play on both sides of the puck and you have to play the hard areas. I’m asking him to change a little bit.
“It’s hard to score now. Teams are tracking back. You’re not going to get those easy-rush goals. You’re going to have to go after it a little bit more.’‘
And Dumont’s response?
“It really doesn’t matter how he takes it,’’ Trotz said. “I really don’t care how he takes it. It’s more you’re going to play a certain way to be successful or … Ice time is the only thing a coach has, so that’s where it starts.’‘
from George Richards of On Frozen Pond,
After another loss on Friday night, words like brutal, frustrating and embarrassing were words spoken in the Panthers locker room.
“That pretty much sums it up,’’ coach Pete DeBoer said grimly.
The Panthers put up just 13 shots in Friday’s 2-1 loss to Calgary at BankAtlantic Center – including a grand total of six in the final 40 minutes….
Afterward, DeBoer said “we just got manhandled.’’ When asked how to change that, he was succinct and candid.
With just one goal on Friday against the travel weary Flames (they flew in from Calgary on Thursday), the Panthers have scored 10 goals in the past nine games.
“You would think when you have some forwards who haven’t scored in 14, 15, 16 games, they might want to get their noses dirty to try and get one,’’ said DeBoer.
“We weren’t interested in that tonight. .-.-. We have lines of guys who haven’t scored in 15 games. It’s tough. The only way to fix that is through free agency in the summer.’‘
from Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette,
Last Sunday, Lorelei O’Byrne succumbed to cancer at age 56, her spirit strong, but body no longer able to resist her disease. At her bedside in Victoria was her husband, Dave, and her daughter, Krystal….
“My dad called the rink to leave a message. ‘Call home,’ it said,” O’Byrne recalled yesterday, speaking quietly after Canadiens practice.
“It’s the phone call you’re expecting, but it’s one you dread. It was a sad day. It had been a long battle for my mom, a long fight.” He cleared his throat once, then again. It had been only five days since his mother had died, but O’Byrne was ready to share these memories.
“I knew she was going to pass away, but it always comes sooner than you hope,” he said. “She put up a long, hard battle. She was a strong woman.” O’Byrne had gone home to Victoria last month, his 10-day leave from the Canadiens described then as “family reasons.” His plan had been to spend four or five days with his mother, who by then was in the final stages of her illness.
But his general manager suggested otherwise.
“Bob Gainey told me to take a step back and take more time with my family,” O’Byrne said. “He encouraged me to take as much time as I needed.
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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