Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Shawn P. Roarke of NHL.com,
Toronto, once the epicenter of hockey, has missed the playoffs the past four seasons, including last season’s 81-point debacle. Nobody knows if the near-term future holds a playoff berth for the Leafs, but Burke promises that his team will give its all to return the Original Six franchise to its former glory.
“Our goal is to make the playoffs next year; we’re going to have to make some changes to do it. We’re going to be a different team,” Burke said this summer. “I like a lot of hitting. I like a lot of fighting. We have a passive group. All year long, when a trainer was on the ice—it was always our trainer—that really bothered me.
“It will be a more hostile group in the fall.”
from Michael Traikos of the National Post,
The new goaltending consultant for the Toronto Maple Leafs says he was never a goaltender. Back when he played hockey, Francois Allaire says the position did not really exist.
Sure, there were players who wore pads strapped to their legs and wore a blocker in one hand and a catching glove on the other. Yes, their objective was to stop shots. But compared to the modern-day goaltender, Allaire and his brethren were as disadvantaged as a forward trying to score with one hand on his stick.
There was no instruction. There was no technique. And the only things that coaches seemed to care about was that the puck stayed out of the net and that the goaltender stayed off his butt.
from Tim Wharnsby of the Globe and Mail,
The Toronto Maple Leafs have granted a tryout to veteran forward Jason Allison.
The 34-year-old will attend the Leafs training camp without a contract next month, even though he hasn’t played in the NHL since his 2005-06 season. That season with the Leafs was cut to 66 games after he suffered a hand injury….
“I’m physically and mentally as healthy as I’ve been in five years,” Allison said. “I’m excited and ready to go.
“I had a lot of personal stuff to deal with last year - just getting my life re-organized and dealing with family issues. It’s been a good year for me, even though I didn’t play hockey and people were wondering where I was or what I was doing ... It was important for me to just get feeling good about life.”
ST. LOUIS (August 27, 2009) – St. Louis Blues President John Davidson announced today that Blues Captain Eric Brewer underwent successful minor arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. The surgery was performed today by Dr. Brian Day in Vancouver.
from the CP via TSN,
If the NHL is successful in buying the Phoenix Coyotes in U.S. Bankruptcy Court, the league plans to quickly engage in talks over a new lease agreement with the city of Glendale.
If no deal is forthcoming, the NHL says it would be forced to turn to a buyer to move the team elsewhere.
“I think we’ve got to get the lease situation resolved or not by the end of this calendar year,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said on Thursday.
No new lease could mean a lame-duck season in Glendale while plans are made to relocate the franchise.
from Barry Riz of TSN,
The former Montreal Canadiens forward - who signed a two-year, $10 million deal with the Ottawa Senators as a free agent this summer - told reporters on Thursday that he would like to finish his career in Montreal.
“I was disappointed, I thought for sure I’d be staying here,” said Kovalev at his charity golf tournament in Montreal. “I couldn’t really understand what had just happened. In the end, I took it from a business point of view. You had a chance to stay here, and you didn’t, so you just go and do the job somewhere else. But maybe somewhere in the future I’ll be back again, and get the same support.”
from Ken Campbell of The Hockey News,
Amid speculation that Sundin has played his last NHL game, Sundin’s agent J.P. Barry, who is in Stockholm for Sundin’s wedding this Saturday, said he expects his client to make up his mind in short order after his wedding. Certainly, it won’t be the half-season soap opera we saw last season when Sundin was waffling over his hockey future before signing with the Vancouver Canucks.
“I think he’s going to talk to me next week, after all this is over,” Barry said. “I’ll get a clear picture pretty quickly. He’s not going to wait as long (as last year) or anything like that. This is an important event for him and then he’s going to make some decisions after this.”
Barry said he wasn’t sure whether Sundin would be available for training camps that begin in mid-September, but said Sundin has kept in shape and continued to train through the summer.
NHL star Patrick Kane and his cousin James Kane have pleaded guilty to one count of disorderly conduct.
The charges stem from an incident earlier this month.
The Kanes had been accused of beating the cab driver after a dispute over a fare.
Patrick and James Kane have been sentenced to one year conditional discharge and they will issue an apology to cab driver Jan Radecki.
from Robert Snell of the Detroit News,
Former Detroit Red Wings star Darren McCarty, who won his fourth Stanley Cup ring in 2008 after recovering from alcoholism and a high-profile bankruptcy filing, has new money problems.
The IRS last week accused him of failing to pay $62,189 in federal taxes.
That’s the latest personal challenge facing the rugged, fan-friendly forward who became part of Detroit sports lore through his grinding style, charitable acts and legendary battles with Colorado’s Claude Lemieux.
from Mike G. Morreale of NHL.com,
“I changed up my offseason workout plan and decided to work closely with Gary Roberts for 7-8 weeks throughout the summer,” Stamkos told NHL.com. “Everyone knows he’s a pretty fanatical guy off the ice and his workouts are tough, but I wanted to stay in shape and learn from him. I definitely see a difference in my body and muscle composition. I didn’t want to bulk up too much because that’ll slow you down, but I do feel stronger and that’s one area I really wanted to improve.”
Stamkos certainly isn’t the only player in the League learning from the best—Dallas Stars forward James Neal also trained with Roberts at his gym in Toronto. Stamkos’ program includes four days at Roberts’ facility for muscle training and two days of cardio—also prescribed by Roberts—on his own.
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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