Kukla's Korner Hockey
Claude Lemieux, who had been working out in Arizona to prepare for an NHL comeback attempt, was somehow convinced to play hockey in Asia with the China Sharks. The move happened quickly and he has already suited up for the Chinese team against Anyang Halla in the Asia League games this past weekend
added 11/19/08 at 12:39pm, from Bill Meltzer at NHL.com,
It remains to be seen how long Lemieux will remain with the Sharks. The China Sharks are owned by the NHL’s San Jose Sharks. San Jose General Manager Doug Wilson, CFO Charlie Faas and CEO Greg Jamison put Lemieux in contact with China Sharks GM Chris Collins, and Lemieux agreed to travel across the Pacific for a trial run with the China Sharks.
The National Hockey League released its preliminary rankings for the 2009 Entry Draft on Tuesday, with Oshawa Generals forward John Tavares leading the Ontario Hockey League’s rankings and Swedish defenceman Victor Hedman ranked No. 1 among European skaters.
Tavares, in his fourth season with the Generals, has scored 174 goals and 191 assists in 214 OHL games. This season, he has 17 goals and 36 points in 23 games.
From the Canadian Press via the Globe & Mail:
Doug Gilmour is headed back to his hometown, leaving the Toronto Maple Leafs organization to become head coach of the OHL’s Kingston Frontenacs.
The former Leafs captain had been an assistant coach with the AHL’s Toronto Marlies since August, and was the Leafs’ professional development adviser for two seasons before that.
from Bob Duff of the Windsor Star,
“I’m really happy here,” said (Andrei) Loktionov, a native of Voskresensk, Russia. “I miss my home, for sure, but I want to be here with the team and make the adjustment to the hockey here.”
Again, take a moment. Put yourself in Loktionov’s skates. Imagine abandoning your family and friends, leaving your comfort zone in the dust, all in order to pursue your dream. And by the way, you’ll be doing all this while still young enough to attend high school.
“I can’t imagine going the other way, how hard it would be,” said Nelson Emerson, player development coach of the Los Angeles Kings, the club which selected Loktionov 123rd overall in the 2008 National Hockey League entry draft. “A kid going to a city that he knows nothing about. Doesn’t know any of his teammates. Doesn’t know the language.
more on Loktionov who is playing for the Windsor Spitfires…
From Gare Joyce at Sportsnet:
Junior is like any other level of hockey. Good goaltending gives a decent club a chance to beat anybody. Something less can undo a powerhouse.
I’m dating myself here but I recall a Toronto Marlies team in 1972 that was as good or better than the franchise’s other powerhouses of that era, including a couple that won Memorial Cups. The ‘72 Marlies were loaded with first-rounders and ran away with the regular-season championship. A mere infant, my world came undone when the Peterborough Petes knocked them off in the playoffs and I put it down to the cruelty of the fates. Years later I had a chance to ask a member of that team, Bob Gainey (this was Bob Gainey before he became that Bob Gainey), exactly how they pulled it off. “Goaltending,” he said expansively.
read on for more junior hockey talk
from Kristina Rutherfordatf CBC Sports,
“You don’t get a concussion every time that happens, but you’ve got to ask yourself, ‘OK, did I get a concussion as well?’ Often that facial injury gets all the attention, and the brain injury tends to get put on the back-burner until later.”
Because it’s an invisible injury only the athlete feels, it’s one they’re too often “playing through,” Czarnota says.
“There’s a culture, certainly in hockey and in all sports, that you don’t sit down. Players want to play through it so they don’t get labelled as soft. Sometimes there’s a fear that if a player sits out, they may lose their starting position. Players don’t want to let the team down.”
But returning to the ice too early can hurt players not only in the short run, but also down the road, the doctor says. That’s what he tells parents, players and their coaches when he sits down with them to suggest the athlete take some time off to heal.
The KHL’s Vice-President of Hockey Operations Vladimir Shalaeva and others addressed the media at a press conference today in Moscow, with updates surrounding the investigation into Cherepanov’s death.
“Today November 14, 2008, there was a move to close the criminal investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of Aleksei Cherepanov, however the prosecutor ordered that the criminal investigation continue.
“A comprehensive forensic study, conducted by additional medical specialists is underway to more deeply and thoroughly analyze the case. We will not be able to share the cause of death of Alexei Cherepanov until this examination is completed in full.”
Shalaeva also noted that the New York Rangers have provided their own medical records on Cherepanov to the KHL.
from the CP via the Sporting News,
When the horn sounded to end the game, (Pat) Stapleton instinctively picked up what would become a cherished memento.
“Why I picked the puck up I have no idea,” he said. “I had control of the puck as the game ended. I had it on my stick. I went to shoot it down the ice, then I just decided to put it in my glove. There was no plan to it.”
Asked where he keeps it, he said, “It’s been all over the place. It’s a secret.”
As for what he eventually plans to do with it, Stapleton said, “That’s a good question, I don’t have a good, clear answer for that yet. It’s taken on legs of its own. Once the mystery is over, it’s over, right?”
from Stan Fischler at the Hockey Journal,
Didja Know Dep’t. Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell have a son who plays college hockey. Wyatt Russell – “Was he named after Dad’s portrayal of Wyatt Earp in Tombstone?” our James Ryan wonders – is goalie for the University of Alabama-Huntsville. It happens to be the only NCAA Division I hockey program in the South. The coach also happens to be ex-NHLer Danton Cole.
more hockey notes and thanks to Stan for the KK mention!
from Chris Johnston of the CP via the Globe and Mail,
There will probably be a crowded class when the Hall opens its doors again next November.
Steve Yzerman is a lock to enter in his first year of eligibility and it’s hard to imagine Brett Hull, Brian Leetch and Luc Robitaille not joining him. All four of those players were legitimate stars in their prime and each has won a Stanley Cup along with one of the league’s major personal awards….
Adam Oates and Doug Gilmour are the highest eligible players on the NHL’s all-time point list that have been passed over. Oates finished his career with 1,420 points — good for 15th overall — and Gilmour is a spot behind him with 1,414 points.
Pavel Bure, Eric Lindros, Steve Larmer, Mike Vernon and Dino Ciccarelli are among a long list of players who continue to warrant some consideration.
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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