Kukla's Korner Hockey
RALEIGH, NC – Ron Francis, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced center Jordan Staal will undergo surgery on Friday to repair a fractured fibula in his right leg. The procedure will be performed by Dr. Kevin Logel and Dr. Marty Isbell at Raleigh Orthopaedic and recovery time is estimated at three to four months.
Staal, 26, was injured during the third period of Carolina’s exhibition game at Buffalo on Tuesday, when he got tangled up with Sabres defenseman Josh Gorges. The Thunder Bay, Ont., native did not miss a single game during his first two seasons with the Hurricanes in 2012-13 and 2013-14, totaling 71 points (25g, 46a) in 130 games.
The Calgary Flames are learning their lessons in truculence at training camp.
In a rare sight for an NHL club, the team devoted part of Thursday's practice to fighting technique, showing several players from their group of non-regulars how to drop the gloves.
"We're teaching the young players how to defend themselves," head coach Bob Hartley explained after practice.
The players - which included centres Paul Byron and Corbin Knight, right winger Ben Hanowski and left winger Trevor Gillies - were being taught on the ice by an outside instructor.
The Flames' regular roster already includes enforcers like wingers Brian McGrattan and Brandon Bollig and defenceman Deryk Engelland who signed a three-year, $8.7 million contract over the summer.
from Nicholas J. Cotsonika of Yahoo,
Kesler is the key part of the Ducks’ plan. The Ducks don’t care where they finish in the regular season, as long as they make the playoffs and prepare themselves along the way. They are creating a leadership group, so Getzlaf and Corey Perry aren’t carrying the whole load. They want to distribute ice time more evenly, so the top players are fresh for the spring and the Ducks can roll four lines against deep division rivals like L.A. and the San Jose Sharks.
The Ducks now have a premier pain-in-the-butt on each of their top two lines – Perry on the first, Kesler on the second. They now have someone else to go against the likes of Anze Kopitar and Joe Thornton. When there’s a draw in the defensive zone, coach Bruce Boudreau doesn’t need to send out Getzlaf as often, freeing Getzlaf for more offensive situations.
“It gives us better options,” Boudreau says. “As far as matchups go, when a team was really matching up on Getzlaf’s line, we didn’t have that other big center that you needed to maybe match up against maybe their No. 1 line.”
“I’ve started a lot, a lot of faceoffs in the defensive zone,” Getzlaf says. “Having another guy here who is responsible in our zone and can play those minutes is going to help me in some aspects of the offensive side – and just overall.”
from Shawn Mitchell of Puck Rakers,
Horton has yet to skate during this training camp because of what general manager Jarmo Kekalainen has called a “degenerative” back condition, albeit one, he has said, that generally plagues almost everyone who has played hockey.
Kekalainen today reiterated that Horton’s injury is one that the club believes can be remedied by a continued course of core strengthening. It is not clear when Horton might be able to resume hockey activities, and no one with knowledge of the injury has ventured to even guess at a timetable.
“Everybody is different, obviously, because there is pain involved and all kinds of things involved with that,” Kekalainen said. “I think Nathan Horton is probably more frustrated than anybody right now as far as trying to find a way to get stronger and get back to being able to play again.
“It’s about getting stronger and managing the pain by getting stronger in the core. Then your back gets stronger and the pain will go away. (He) is the only person that really knows where he is at and how much pain there is involved. It’s impossible for anybody else to know what he is going through right now. He is suffering.”
more for an injury update on Ryan Murray and more Blue Jackets news...
from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
Far too often, the sports world forgets what it’s all about: Entertainment.
But what happened in this lakeside town of 13,000 over the last four days was a perfect illustration of two teams, a league, a broadcaster, a sponsor and every single player involved in getting it right.
The result: Pure magic for the residents of Sylvan Lake, who were privy to the very best the sport has to offer.
OK, so the hockey was ... well ... pre-season. But the packaging around it was sublime.
The ending: Perfection.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
During his French media scrum Thursday, Patrick Roy's face lit up when asked about his blue-line corps.
There seemed to be genuine excitement in his eyes.
"Yes," Roy said Thursday morning at the Bell Centre when asked if that was indeed the case.
You see, where everyone else around the hockey world sees Colorado’s soft underbelly, the reigning Jack Adams Award winner sees a group that’s very much under the radar.
"Tyson [Barrie] had a really good second half of the season," began Roy. "He was outstanding. When we lost him [against] Minny in the playoffs that was a really big loss for us. Nick Holden, same thing, what a year he had for us. E.J. [Erik Johnson] is an important part of it, it’s a group that’s been learning. [Jan] Hejda and Brad Stuart will bring a lot of experience and help our young guys."
from Joe Haggerty of CSNNE,
It’s been a couple of years since Adam McQuaid was able to play his punishing stay-at-home defenseman game without worrying about some health issue or another.
Two years ago, it was returning from a blood clot that left him in a weakened state entering the season. Last season, he was dogged by lower body problems throughout a season that ended for him in January....
“I think he came out and tried to make a statement that he’s ready to play, and that he wants to be here,” said coach Claude Julien. “I thought he played a really strong game. I give him high marks for his first game back.”...
That’s great news for the Bruins in that they may be getting back a player that finished with 15 points and a plus-30 three seasons ago as big, strong bottom-pairing defenseman It’s also a positive development if the B’s opt to deal him from their D-man surplus now that he’s shown he’s once again healthy.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
Given the ongoing train wreck that is the NFL and its mishandling of issues, it's natural to look to other leagues and wonder how they deal with these kinds of issues and what kinds of safeguards are in place.
This isn't about smugness or suggesting that the NHL is immune to these problems.
The NHL has more than 700 players. There are another, what, 400 to 500, coaches, GMs and other executives related to hockey operations. It is a small town. Stuff happens in small towns. People get sick. They commit a range of criminal acts. They drink too much. Some do drugs. And, of course, there are domestic issues.
That is life and no one is suggesting that life doesn't take place in the National Hockey League.
But if there is a way to explain why the league's discipline issues have been for the most part restricted to on-ice behavior, perhaps it's in the fact that the league's policies governing personal behavior have been drawn up with and are administered jointly by the players themselves through the National Hockey League Players' Association and the league itself.
The number of domestic-related issues are so small both historically and within the recent past that it is difficult to suggest any real trends regarding the problem as it relates to NHL players, deputy commissioner Bill Daly told ESPN.com. Exactly why the number is so small could be related to a variety of factors.
“I just got kind of, not brainwashed, but my last couple years in New Jersey we were so adamant about dumping the puck in. But you lose a lot of your creativity and you lose a lot of good touches. I mean, if a ‘D’s in your face, you’ve got no other options and you have to.
“But dump it just to dump it, I’m not a believer anymore in getting rid of the puck when it’s so hard to get. That’s the way we played in New Jersey. We always had a plan: Forwards dumped it in, we knew where it was going and that’s how we got it back. But the more I thought about it, possession is just so much better than dumping it in. Dumping it should be, I don’t want to say your last option, but your second or third option.”
-Zach Parise of the Minnesota Wild. More on this topic from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune.
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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