Kukla's Korner Hockey
New Jersey Devils forward Stephen Gionta comments on his ugly spear on Mark Borowiecki of the Ottawa Senators.
Gionta received a five minute major for spearing and a game misconduct.
Below, watch the spear and scroll to the :50 second mark to see the replay...
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
Hours before the Senators owner appeared Sunday night at centre ice at the Canadian Tire Centre with his children Anna, 16, and Olivia, 13, ahead of the club’s home opener against the Montreal Canadiens, the 56-year-old Melnyk sat down with the Sun for an exclusive one-on-one interview at his Ottawa hotel.
Speaking for the first time since a lifesaving liver transplant on May 19 at the Toronto General Hospital (TGH), Melnyk revealed during the two-hour discussion his health issues really started with a stroke in January and by early April he learned he needed the transplant in order to live.
“I’d never been sick a day in my life until I was 50 years old and even then it was nothing major,” said Melnyk.
When he became ill, Melnyk was going downhill fast and his closest friends urged him to get help. He was having trouble sleeping, difficulty eating and felt sick to his stomach most of time. He went to see a friend at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Toronto in late January to find out what was wrong.
“He said, ‘You look like (crap) and I said, ‘Well thank you, so do you.’ But I can get away with that because I’m sick,” he said with a smile.
It was at that point he learned he’d had a stroke. He received treatment and then moved to a rehabilitation centre in Toronto where he remained until late-March. While he was supposed to be getting better, his health continued to decline and he had symptoms typical of patients whose liver wasn’t functioning properly.
Hometown Hockey kicks off their season in Kitchener tonight starting at 6:30pm ET on the NHL Network and Sportsnet.
The game between Montreal and Ottawa starts just after 7:00pm ET and is also on RDS.
I also hope all of Canada enjoys the Thanksgiving Holiday and can spend some valuable time with family and friends.
from Ken Warren of the Ottawa Citizen,
... with so little turnover from the squad that raced to the playoffs on a record-setting run last spring — the Senators traded Lehner to Buffalo and third-pair defenceman Eric Gryba to Edmonton and defensive specialist Erik Condra signed with Tampa as a free agent — there are high hopes.
“To see 20, 21 guys return is usually a rare occasion,” said goaltender Craig Anderson, who is expected to open the season busy, playing three games in four nights. “It shows the faith management has in the group we have here. It’s up to us to make good on the deal and prove to management they made the right decision by not bringing in extra players and moving guys out.”
Looking around the dressing room at all the familiar faces, Karlsson says, “It felt like we almost didn’t have a break.”
Ryan suggests the team has drawn from the positives of last spring. “The feeling carries over when you see that many faces coming back,” he said.
Senators coach Dave Cameron employed a serious, no-nonsense approach to his first camp as head coach, putting an “NHL group” in place after only a few days. As expected, his emphasis was on skating and more skating, and he came away generally satisfied with the effort and results.
“In our business, as coaches, we’re never completely happy,” Cameron said. “Overall, I have no real complaints. I have some individuals I’m pushing a little harder than others, but on the overall, I think it has been pretty good.”
from Joyanne Pursaga of the Winnipeg Sun,
Winnipeg Police Service Chief Devon Clunis said officers made the right call in providing a police escort to get an NHL team to MTS Centre on time.
Clunis told the Winnipeg Police Board Friday the Ottawa Senators paid for the escort after being delayed due to mechanical issues on a flight just prior to Tuesday's game. The decision involved no police overtime and occurred when resources were available, Clunis said.
"We are a city on the world stage. The NHL is a significant player. If we were not able to assist them to have the game occur on time for our citizens, for the national audience, I am certain we would have had a black eye in terms of the police service, the City of Winnipeg," Clunis told reporters after the meeting. "I thought it was the right decision for our city, for our citizens and it was at absolutely no cost to the city whatsoever."
According to the WPS website, police charge $825 plus tax per escort using one vehicle and two officers.
Coun. Ross Eadie (Mynarski) expressed concerns about the decision, given high demand for police resources. Eadie said he looks forward to reviewing the WPS policy on escorts.
from Ken Warren of the Ottawa Citizen,
Ottawa Senators General manager Bryan Murray really isn’t one to ever mince words so it was no surprise that he had a blunt take Friday on the departure of Swedish defenceman Mikael Wikstrand for home.
“I told him (Wikstrand) he can go home and be a grocery clerk and play in a beer league.”
The training camp competition between Matt Puempel and Shane Prince for a spot on the wing appears to have titled in Prince’s favour after Puempel left the ice with an injury to his left arm or shoulder. Prince already had an advantage in that he would have to clear waivers if returned to Binghamton.
Wikstrand too has suffered a shoulder injury and had yet to play in an exhibition game.
Watch Bryan Murray below as he talks about Wikstrand...
added 1:52pm, Well this changes things...
"We have to know that last year was an unbelievable run that doesn't happen very often in this league in particular. I think we'll end up having some carryover ... I'm hoping. There was some growth because of it. I think our team is going to be a real competitive team every night. Like a lot of teams it will be a battle to make the playoffs. That's gotta be the first objective. Lots of people aren't picking us there but I really think we're going to be a real serious contender for a playoff spot and then who knows?"
-Bryan Murray, GM of the Ottawa Senators. Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun has more from Murray.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
The Senators are in the final stages of discussions with their former captain to bring him back in an off-ice role in hockey operations. What his title is going to be will be determined next month but the 42-year-old Alfredsson has told the Sun in the past he liked the role of senior VP that Steve Yzerman played in Detroit.
“Alfie can probably have whatever title he wants but the key is what he can bring to the table and he’s got a lot to learn,” said another league executive.
If Alfredsson wants to follow in the footsteps of Yzerman, who is headed into his sixth year as GM of the Lightning, then that isn’t going to happen overnight and the Super Swede will likely get a look at every aspect of the organization when he officially signs on with the Senators sometime before training camp.
At this point, Alfredsson is back in Detroit and there’s some belief his family may stay there this winter because the kids are enrolled in school and sports.
A move back to Ottawa may not happen until 2016-17 and at that point Alfredsson would be able to take on more of role.
from Chris Stevenson at NHL.com,
The Ottawa Senators will be an interesting team this season because the elements that made them the success story of the final two months of last season also present the biggest question marks.
Their charge to the Stanley Cup Playoffs was fueled by a rookie coach, a goaltender making his NHL debut, and a group of young players who successfully handled bigger roles and more responsibility.
Here are three questions the Senators face this season:
What will Bobby Ryan contribute? The 28-year-old is expected to be one of the Senators' offensive leaders, but he struggled down the stretch in 2014-15.
Ryan had 18 goals and 36 assists for 54 points, but after scoring in back-to-back games March 3 and 4, Ryan had one goal in the final 20 regular-season games. He did not have an assist in 17 of those games.
Ryan scored two goals in Game 5 of the six-game, Eastern Conference First Round loss to the Canadiens.
It's remarkable the Senators were capable of going on the run they did to make the playoffs with Ryan contributing so little. It says a lot about what they got from their emerging young talent.
There will be even more scrutiny on Ryan, who enters the first year of a seven-year, $50.75 million contract extension he signed on the eve of last season.
Hoffman was asking for $3.4M while the Senators offered $1.75M.
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org