Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Scott Cruickshank of Flames Insider at the Calgary Herald,
It’s put-up or shut-up time for Olli Jokinen.
After years of teasing and flirting with becoming a truly elite player, rather than just a solitary figure trapped in unhappy situations, Wednesday’s trade to the Flames gives him every opportunity to finally fulfil his vast potential.
His lack of leadership in the past has come into question. Well, he isn’t obliged to be a centrepiece in Calgary. No one’s looking for him to lead the charge into Joe Louis or The Shark Tank. There’s already many strong personalities inside the Flames’ room. Jarome Iginla and Robyn Regehr, for starters. There’s plenty of insulation for him to just go out and dominate on the ice - and certainly all the ingredients are in place for that.
from Sam Carchidi of Broad Street Bull,
While many of the Eastern Conference contenders got better today, the Flyers took a step backward. All because they were backed into a corner by their lack of cap space.
So they traded energetic winger Scottie Upshall to Phoenix for tough-guy winger Dan Carcillo, the NHL’s leader with 174 penalty minutes .
My first reaction: The Broad Street Bullies are being resurrected _ and that won’t work in today’s speed-first NHL.(Carcillo and Flyers winger Riley Cote are second in the NHL with 18 fights each.) Still, general manager Paul Holmgren deserves a mulligan. In two years, he has transformed the Flyers from a laughing stock to one of the Eastern Conference’s elite teams.
from Elliotte Friedman of Blogs and Columns at CBC,
In Quebec, they were howling for Olli Jokinen. They were screaming for Jay Bouwmeester. But neither player made sense for the Canadiens and Gainey knew it. He knows the truth. His team is not good enough to win….
For Gainey, either move would have been irresponsible. The honest truth is that with either Jokinen or Bouwmeester, the Canadiens wouldn’t be good enough to win. Heck, I’d argue that adding both of them still isn’t enough.
Only a bad GM would panic and waste precious young players/draft picks in such a deal - and Bob Gainey isn’t a bad GM.
more and other deadline notes…
from Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune,
“This day was different for myself and our staff [because] we were buyers and not sellers,” Tallon said as he addressed the media at the United Center after acquiring center Samuel Pahlsson from the Anaheim Ducks for defenseman James Wisniewski. “Buying is a lot more fun than selling, believe me.”
The Hawks targeted a veteran center who is tough defensively, wins faceoffs and has postseason experience. Pahlsson fits the bill.
The 31-year-old hasn’t played since Jan. 31 because of mononucleosis and is up to three weeks from joining the Hawks’ lineup, but the Hawks have their sights set more on the postseason than the final 20 games of the regular season.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
The Canucks were willing to give up LW Mason Raymond and a No. 1 draft pick. The belief is Florida wanted either D Kevin Bieksa or D Alex Edler included and GM Mike Gillis wasn’t willing to make the move. That’s where the discussions ended for Vancouver.
The Flyers wanted to move either RW Joffrey Lupul or RW Scottie Upshall (who landed in Phoenix) along with prospect James vanRiemsdyk and a No. 1 pick to the Panthers. It’s believed Florida wanted LW Scott Hartnell as part of the trade.
There is risk involved for the Panthers. A first-round playoff fall doesn’t constitute playoff success.
more and a few more hockey topics…
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
After all the noise, the hype, the pomp, this was Brian Burke’s first chance to strut his stuff as general manager of the Maple Leafs and on hockey’s busiest day he came away with a performance best deemed as underwhelming.
Maybe he did all he could. Maybe he had little to barter with. Maybe everyone’s expectations—yours and mine—were impossible to meet.
We expected a rabbit to get pulled out a hat and all we got was a phony trade where the Leafs paid real money (in salaries) to essentially purchase a fourth- round draft pick from the cash-poor Tampa Bay Lightning. That was creative, if not, insignificant. He needed an extra pick and for picking up about half a million in salary, he acquired one.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
“I think you need personality,” Tortorella said following yesterday’s practice. “I don’t think you need a bunch of people saying, ‘Yes sir, how many times should I go through that wall for you, sir?’
“I think personality is very important as you play an eight-month season.”...
Now there’s some strut. Now there’s some edge. Now the Rangers are better fortified to make some kind of a stand following the reacquisition of Sean Avery (seems like old news, doesn’t it?) and the acquisitions of big forward Nik Antropov and semi-tough defenseman Derek Morris in deadline trades in which the second-rounder that went to Toronto was the only item of future value that Sather sacrificed.
Every week, the NHL on TSN panel voices their opinions on the hot topics of the day in the Wednesday Night Hockey Quiz.
Who has the best chance of unseating the Red Wings as Stanley Cup Champions?
Bob McKenzie: I’m going to say the New Jersey Devils. I liked them from the beginning of the year, and I like them even better now that Zach Parise is having an MVP-caliber season….
Darren Dreger: The Calgary Flames. They will beat the Red Wings in the Western Conference, so Detroit won’t make it to the final.
Pierre McGuire: I think it’s the Devils for what Bob said, and for the fact they probably have the best coach in the NHL right now.
more questions & answers from the TSN experts…
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
So who won, lost or sat on the fence at Wednesday’s NHL trade deadline?
• Calgary Flames: They acquired a first-line centre in Olli Jokinen from the Phoenix Coyotes and a No. 5 defenceman in Jordan Leopold from the Colorado Avalanche — with surrendering any of their key players….
• Phoenix Coyotes: GM Don Maloney moved out four players and brought in six, along with first- and second-round picks, getting younger and faster by moving out Jokinen and defenceman Derek Morris. They will miss tough guy Daniel Carcillo’s fire, but if they can resign Scottie Upshall and get Nigel Dawes and Petr Prucha going, they are loaded with kids up front in their rebuilding.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
Wednesday’s NHL trade deadline was just as newsworthy for the players who didn’t move as for those who did find new homes.
And that’s because several playoff-bound teams did not want to give up young assets in this uncertain NHL economic landscape. Prospects and draft picks might be the most important assets right now as teams try to figure out what’s going to happen with the salary cap over the next few years.
There was perhaps no more telling sign of that than the defending Stanley Cup champion Detroit Red Wings’ standing pat on a day where they traditionally dominate the headlines.
Sure, Wings GM Ken Holland dabbled in a few forays for a gritty forward, including a phone call to Ottawa for Neil, but in the end, he chose to hold on to his draft picks and prospects … something he had predicted he would do in an e-mail to us the day before the deadline.
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.
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