Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Adrian Dater of the Denver Post,
Believe it or not, there was a time just a few months ago when some of hockey’s most well-known experts were saying the Avalanche was a better team than the Detroit Red Wings.
“Colorado,” NBC hockey analyst Pierre McGuire said quickly, when a couple of us nosy reporters asked who would win the Avs’ Western Conference semifinal last spring with Detroit. “I like how they stack up against Detroit.”
Four games later, the Avs were done. Game 4 was the humiliating 8-2 Detroit romp at the Pepsi Center. Henrik Zetterberg was scoring on backhanders while falling down and Johan Franzen flashed his big Swedish grin for the final of his approximately 46 goals he scored in the series (actually, only nine — but still a Detroit record for one series).
This foolish reporter was actually sipping the Avalanche Kool-Aid before the series, too.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
Sundin told friends money will not be the prime factor when it comes time to choose a team.
The Blueshirts currently have approximately $1 million of cap space. Pro-rating cap hits, the Blueshirts would need approximately $2.877M of space on Dec. 27 in order to be able to offer Sundin a full-season contract of $5M, half of Vancouver’s standing bid.
Trading or waiving Petr Prucha by Friday would add approximately another $1M of space. Returning freshman Lauri Korpikoski - who has had three straight games of under 10 minutes of ice time - to the AHL Wolf Pack by Friday would add approximately another $635,000 of space.
That would give the Rangers about $2.635M of space - enough to allot Sundin around $4.25M.
Understand, the Rangers are not trading Michal Rozsival to Dallas in exchange for the right to bury Sean Avery in the minor leagues.
They are most certainly not attempting to deal Scott Gomez.
from Lynn Zinser of the New York Times,
Vaulting to a 21-5-4 record, with a roster filled with young, fresh faces who play a fun style of hockey, the Bruins have finally softened the heart of their city.
“In Boston, it’s a tough crowd,” General Manager Peter Chiarelli said. “People are now critiquing how we win. You know what? This is a good sign.”
The Bruins have lost only three games since the beginning of November, one of them in a shootout to the Rangers. They have won 16 times in that span, including a 5-3 victory last Monday against the Lightning. And they ended up lamenting having given up the three goals to Tampa Bay.
But the fans loved every minute. They watched one of their young stars, 21-year-old Phil Kessel, score at least a point for his 12th straight game, a streak he has stretched to 15 games. They howled at every hit and shot taken by Milan Lucic, who at 20 is fast becoming a folk hero for his scrappy play. Lucic is constantly serenaded by chants of “Luuuuu,” from an increasingly boisterous crowd.
‘It wasn’t feeling like it was supposed to be feeling, so I got off the ice. I didn’t want to make it worse and I’m going to stay off the ice until I’m 100 percent.’‘
‘Week-to-week? Tough to say. This is the first time I’ve dealt with a groin injury. Just when I thought I was ready to get back into it, my groin was telling me something else.”
‘‘I’m a competitor; I want to be in goal every day.’‘
-Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo. More at TSN.
from David Pollak of Working the Corners,
Two injury updates from the morning skate:
Joe Pavelski could be in the lineup against L.A. on Monday night, but just in case he isn’t, the Sharks plan to call up another forward from Worcester. Nothing official yet, but Jamie McGinn would be a pretty good guess.
And Jeremy Roenick will have arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder tomorrow. That decision means he’s definitely going to be out of action longer than the three-week forecast given yesterday, but just how much longer won’t be known until the procedure is completed and the training staff knows what it’s up against.
continue for more on the Sharks
I wonder if the Sharks would attempt to bring up Claude Lemieux who would have to clear waivers first?
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
• If you’re wondering who has the best ice in the league, it’s not Edmonton. We’re still in the top 10, but closer to No. 10 than No. 5 because there’s lots of snow buildup now. It’s often only good for the first five minutes or so of a period. The best sheets are in Montreal, Minnesota , Philadelphia and Detroit.
• Sergei Zubov’s body is breaking down. The Dallas defenceman might need hip surgery now.
more hockey topics…
The Anaheim Ducks traded forward Brian Sutherby to the Dallas Stars for the rights to collegian David McIntyre and a conditional draft pick.
Sutherby is playing his seventh season in the NHL, putting up 29 goals and 39 assists in 321 career games played between the Ducks and Washington Capitals.
added 2:54pm, from Mike Heika of the Dallas Stars Blog,
I don’t get it.
They lose prospect David McIntyre, taken in the fifth round in 2006 who currently is at Colgate. He’s a swift and nifty center who had 15 goals and 17 assists in 39 games last season. They also lose a conditional sixth round draft pick in 2010. Seriously, it’s probably not that much of a cost. It really is just a minor deal for a player who once was a first round draft pick for the Capitals.
added 3:15pm, from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
As much as Avery is a pariah at this moment, that view might change significantly between now and the March 4 trade deadline.
If Avery shows he’s changed and the Stars brought him back through waivers, he could be claimed by another NHL team at half his salary and half his salary-cap hit. By that time Avery might look pretty attractive to a team that has Cup aspirations but lacks what they see as the required grit to get over the hump.
But that moment is far in the distance.
“There’s no sense talking about it until he gets better,” Hull said.
(Dallas, TX December 14, 2008) – The Dallas Stars today announced that Sean Avery will not return to the NHL team. Representatives for both Avery and the Stars said they would continue to work together in support of Avery during “this critical time” for the player. All parties said there is a clear understanding that a return to the Stars is not in the best interest of either the hockey club or Avery.
“Sean needs to focus on his own well-being while the Stars hockey team must focus on playing hockey and competing for a playoff spot,” said Stars Co-General Manager Brett Hull. “Everyone understands that Sean will not return to the Dallas Stars. We all need to move forward.”
from Empty Netters,
The Penguins’ Jordan Staal and Philadelphia’s Scott Hartnell each reached the 10-goal mark this season yesterday and joined four other double-digit goal scorers on each roster. That moved the Keystone State’s teams into a tie with the San Jose Sharks for the most individual players with 10 or more goals on their roster:
read on for a team breakdown of the 10 or more goals scorers…
from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
The Blues are in the early stages of negotiations with the NHL to open the 2009-10 season in Sweden.
Looking to gain global exposure, the NHL has opened each of the past two seasons overseas. In 2007, Anaheim and Los Angeles kicked off the league’s regular-season schedule in London, England. This season, four NHL teams played their regular-season openers in Prague, Czech Republic, and Stockholm, Sweden.
The Blues likely would play the Detroit Red Wings in Sweden, but both sides at this point say nothing is firm.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org