Kukla's Korner Hockey
Alexei Kovalev on his early season slump…
I’m not worried about it. I’m glad it happens early in the season because I know I’m going to recover, and once they start going in, they’ll go in in bunches.
“So you keep working on it. It’s happened in the past and it isn’t the worst thing that can happen to you.”
more from Bill Beacon of the CP via Yahoo…
from Kevin Allen of Mucking and Grinding,
Don’t view any investment as a safe investment. Don’t draw an inside straight. Don’t argue politics with someone who didn’t want change. And don’t ever, ever discount the Minnesota Wild’s chances of making the playoffs as long as Jacques Lemaire is coach.
I’m not even waiting for New Year’s Day to make my resolution. That’s now my philosophy after watching November unfold.
In October, my prediction was that the Minnesota Wild wouldn’t make the playoffs. Today, they have the third-best winning percentage in the Western Conference and they are leading the NHL in goals-against average.
Looking at Minnesota’s roster and reviewing how the Wild have performed this season, my conclusion is that as respected as Lemaire is around the NHL, we might still be underestimating his importance.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
1. Whatever happened to that really good player Alexei Kovalev?
Unfortunately for the Montreal Canadiens, the great Alexei Kovalev—the one that generated Hart Trophy talk and ended up leading the NHL in power-play points last season—has gone AWOL. Poof. After the Habs’ 3-2 win Saturday against Buffalo, Kovalev has gone 13 games without a goal. He has just five goals so far and is fourth in team scoring.
read on for more Q & A…
NEW YORK (Dec. 1, 2008)—Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin, Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin and New York Islanders goaltender Joey MacDonald have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for November.
From Mike Ulmer of the Toronto Maple Leafs:
I was curious about the ramifications of the relationship between Ron Wilson and Brian Burke. They go back, as you may have heard, to their first week of school at Providence College in Rhode Island.
“There’s a reason best friends often don’t date,” I said. “You two have never run an NHL team together. Are you worried that the pressures of the job will affect the friendship?”
First, guys don’t like it when you refer to their business relationship as “a date.” Wilson let that one go, which was kind.
Second, this is a classic cart-before-the-horse question.
from Craig Custance of the Sporting News,
In this week’s rankings, we grade the performances of the goalies so far this season for each team:
Click here to find out more!
(Last week’s rankings are in parentheses).
1. San Jose Sharks (1): Before getting injured, Evgeni Nabokov was solid, if not quite up to his usual standards. Brian Boucher (7-1-1, .928 save percentage) has been great in a relief role. Grade: B+
2. Boston Bruins (3): Tim Thomas and Manny Fernandez have emerged as the league’s best goalie tandem. Grade: A
NEW YORK (Dec. 1, 2008)—Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby, Anaheim Ducks goaltender Jonas Hiller and St. Louis Blues goaltender Chris Mason have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending Sunday, Nov. 30.
from the blog of Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,
There was an interesting development at the morning skate at Joe Louis Arena – while talking about tonight’s game against the Ducks, Mike Babcock threw out a question of his own.
“Who’s the hardest working team in the National Hockey League?” he said. “Well, in the past I’ve been able to say without any question, here. I don’t think that’s the case right now.”
For more on the TV commercial, visit this post from earlier today.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
So, Brian Burke is finally the GM (and president) of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Here are five things you should know about NHL general managers:
1. One of the reasons we put Ken Holland at the top of our list isn’t because he continues to build Stanley Cup contenders every single season despite drafting in the top 10 about once every two decades….
2. GMs can be a volatile lot. Hey, they’re hockey guys. We remember being in the cramped press box in Detroit during the first round of the 2006 playoffs when Edmonton GM Kevin Lowe raced the length of box to try and get at the NHL officials after a call went against his Oilers. Think gauntlet and you get a sense of Lowe’s path. Lowe’s journey was made even more difficult by the fact he was trying to force out expletives every step of the way.
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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