Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bruce McCurday of The Cult of Hockey,
I daresay I’m not the only Edmonton Oilers fan who gets sick and tired of the team getting called out in the national media. Especially so when those critics are all too willing to throw in gratuitous insults about the city and the fanbase, as if we are somehow deserving of our lot in life supporting a club that has become something of a laughing stock for its constant, ongoing futility.
I am, however, prepared to make exceptions for fully informed commentators who are able to focus on the real problems while sparing the cheap shots. The man at the top of that list may well be Ray Ferraro, the TSN broadcaster who once worked as a regional colour man for the Oilers from 2003-08 and who has followed the team’s (mis)fortunes closely ever since. Ferraro has been harsh in his criticisms of the team to the point that some consider him an Oiler-hater, but to my ear many if not most of those assessments are valid, at least to a degree.
Take Wednesday afternoon’s segment on the Jason Gregor Show, when Ferraro let fly for the better part of 20 minutes in his usual shoot-from-the-hip fashion that emerges from his mouth in complete sentences and a high degree of articulateness that puts some of us writers to shame....
Ray Ferrrar speaks...
They’re coming off a guy that hasn’t coached in the NHL before, and they need a guy to transition the new coach. To me that’s a red flag. I would have thought given the disarray that the Oilers are in — and contrary to what Craig [MacTavish] has said, I don’t think they look much better than last year — and my thought has been somebody along the lines of Terry Murray, he’s been around the game for 35 years, he’s a real stickler for discipline, and he’s probably better with a young team than an older team. That would have been my thought had I been in charge. I look what Winnipeg did last year when they went from Claude Noel to Paul Maurice, there was no transitioning needing. Now Todd Nelson may turn out to be a fine coach, I just don’t know enough about him, but I do know he hasn’t coached in the NHL before.
The IIHF Hall of Fame Selection Committee has added seven new names to its pantheon of greats, and the newest members represent the pinnacle of the international game through a wide variety of contributions. In honour of the golden era of Czech hockey, goaltender Dominik Hasek and longtime captain Robert Reichel will be inducted. Joining them is Scott Niedermayer, the Triple Gold Club Canadian defenceman who has won at every level possible.
To celebrate 25 years of women’s hockey come two inductees, Fran Rider, as a Builder, the woman most responsible for the very creation of women’s hockey at the international level, and Swede Maria Rooth, the catalyst to the “Mirakel” in Turin in 2006.
Introducing a new trophy named after great Swiss star of the 1930s, Richard “Bibi” Torriani, the IIHF will honour Italian Lucio Topatigh, whose 20-year career with the Azzurri was exceptional in its own right.
Joining these inductees into the Hall of Fame is Monique Scheier-Schneider of Luxembourg, who will be the 2015 recipient of the Paul Loicq Award. The new class will be honoured next May in Prague during the medal weekend of the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship.
continued which includes a biography on each inductee...
via the NHL YouTube channel,
NHL.com correspondent Kevin Woodley discusses how goalie analytics can provide different measures for shot-stopping success.
ERIKSSON LIFTS BRUINS IN OVERTIME
After surrendering the tying goal with 8:21 remaining in regulation, Loui Eriksson scored at 1:30 of overtime to help the Bruins snap a three-game skid and earn their second win in their past eight outings (2-4-2).
* With the victory, the Bruins (16-13-3, 35 points) leapfrogged the Panthers (13-8-8, 34 points) and Capitals (14-10-6, 34 points) for the second Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference.
* Eriksson recorded his seventh career overtime goal and first since joining the Bruins for the 2013-14 season. All seven of those goals have come since the start of the 2008-09 campaign; per Elias, only Washington’s Alex Ovechkin (10) and Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos (8) have posted more overtime goals in that span.
* Erkisson has three goals in his past five outings (3-1—4), equaling his total from the first 27 contests of the season (3-10—13).
"The fact of the matter is, over the last two decades, the league, the game, the presence and prominence from our clubs has grown on every measurable platform, whether or not it's TV viewing, attendance, social media or revenues. The game, our franchises have never been healthier, have never been stronger and have never been more widely followed."
-Gary Bettman. The commissioner joined Chicago radio today and Nina Falcone of CSNChicago has more.
via Sportnet YouTube channel,
The holidays bring out cheer, generosity and giving in people. The players in this video are a prime example, watch them give away pucks to bring cheer to an opposing team with an absolute gift of a goal.
added 5:34pm, video of the Neal dive is below...
NEW YORK (Dec. 17, 2014) – Nashville Predators forward James Neal has been fined $2,000 as supplementary discipline under NHL Rule 64 (Diving/Embellishment), the National Hockey League announced today.
Revised for the 2014-15 season following offseason approval by the League's Board of Governors and the National Hockey League Players' Association, NHL Rule 64 is designed to bring attention to and more seriously penalize players (and teams) who repeatedly dive and embellish in an attempt to draw penalties. Fines are assessed to players and head coaches on a graduated scale outlined below:
Calgary, AB – The Calgary Flames announced today that they have signed head coach Bob Hartley to a multi-year contract extension.
Hartley was originally named head coach of the Flames on May 31, 2012. He has guided the Flames to a 71-79-13 record during the past three seasons and earned his 400th career win on December 4th, 2014 over Colorado. The Flames currently hold a 17-14-2 record for 36 points and are 5th place in the Pacific Division, 9th in the Western Conference and 15th overall in League standings.
from Steve Silverman of CBSNewYork,
Whether it was a summer-time message from head coach Alain Vigneault or a good, long look in the mirror, Nash is not the player he was in his previous two seasons with the Rangers.
Instead, he is much better. There’s a legitimate aggression to his game and he is dominating the box score on a near-nightly basis. He has scored 20 goals already and leads the Rangers with 33 points. He has a plus-13 that leads the team, and he is playing with a drive and an aggression that Rangers fans had heard about when the team first acquired him, but one that had not been seen before this season.
Teammate Derek Stepan said that Nash played just this way last year, but he was victimized by bad luck and that’s why he didn’t put the puck in the net.
Vigneault wasn’t having any of it. After Nash scored two goals last night against the Flames to pave the way for the Blueshirts in a 5-2 victory, he put it succinctly.
“We need him to play the way he is,” Vigneault said. “We’re no different than any other team in the league. You need your top players to be your top performers, and that’s what Rick is doing for us right now.”
from Aaron Portzline of Puck-Rakers,
On Thursday, the Blue Jackets host Metropolitan Division rival Washington in Nationwide Arena, the start of a five-game homestand. Columbus doesn't hit the road until next year.
With a win, the Blue Jackets will have matched a franchise record with eight straight victories. They'd also match the Chicago Blackhawks (Nov. 26 to Dec. 11) for the longest winning streak in the NHL this season.
"I've liked our attention to detail, our play with the puck," Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards said. "We can still get better. We have to get better. But you see that we're working hard and doing the right things, and there's a feeling now that we're expecting to have success."
Let's be honest here: Blue Jackets goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky has been the driving force of this win streak. His 52-save performance on Dec. 4 was the second game of the streak, but he's been stellar throughout.
On Nov. 30, Bobrovsky was 5-8-1 with a .907 save percentage and 3.03 goals-against average. Since December started, he's 7-0-0 with a .950 save percentage and a 1.63 goals-against average.
more on the Blue Jackets...
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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