Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Wayne Scanlan of the Ottawa Citzen,
In 2013-14, Ottawa were to play 17 afternoon dates. They wound up playing 18 because a Jan. 24 game in Carolina was re-booked to noon on Jan. 25. Nearly every one was a disaster.
The overall record: 4-12-2. The Senators were equal opportunity daytime pushovers, losing in multiple U.S. states, in three different time zones, in Western Canada and on home ice.
Staff and players tried everything to change the mojo: Arrived at the rink sooner. Altered the warmup routine. Drank extra coffee.
“We changed everything down to the music,” said centre Kyle Turris at one point. To no avail.
It’s a new season and, the Senators hope, a new storyline on afternoon starts. To boost it along, they have delayed their home afternoon start times by an hour, hoping it’s a better match for players’ circadian rhythms.
“He had the instincts of a Wayne Gretzky as a goalie. Really, he was one of the few goalies who ever played the game who could intimidate the other team before the puck dropped. They didn’t know how to score on him because you never knew what he was going to do.”
-Chris Osgood on Dominik Hasek. Much more on Hasek from Nicholos J. Cotsonika of Yahoo.
from Sean McIndoe of Grantland,
If Alfredsson has indeed played his last NHL game, is he a Hall of Famer? Here’s the case for and against.
For: His numbers are good
For forwards in the modern era, topping the 1,000-point mark has long been considered the minimum threshold to get into the Hall of Fame discussion, and Alfredsson clears that mark comfortably with a career total of 1,157. He falls short of the 500-goal mark, another milestone that bolsters a case, but he was never viewed as a pure goal scorer, and his 444 goals are within the lower range of what the Hall seems to consider acceptable.2
Against: His numbers are good; they’re not great
Alfredsson’s career totals are decent, but they fall well short of sure-thing territory. He sits 51st in career points, behind guys like Bernie Nicholls and Vincent Damphousse who never even dipped a toe into serious HOF conversation.
That’s not an especially great comparison, since those guys played in a higher-scoring era.3 But nobody ever said these debates were fair, and some selection committee members might look at Alfredsson’s totals and feel underwhelmed when the comparisons start getting thrown around.
from Jeff Z. Klein of the New York Times,
The Ottawa Senators’ home arena was a bit too quiet, as it often is for regular-season games not involving the Toronto Maple Leafs or the Montreal Canadiens. The opponents last Tuesday night were the Detroit Red Wings, and most of the phlegmatic Senators crowd at Canadian Tire Centre sat and watched in hushed contemplation.
But not in Section 319 in the upper deck, where red-and-black-clad fans stood, beating on drums and raising a din all night. “Oh, when the Sens! Go marching in!” they sang again and again, between chants of “This is our house!” When Ottawa scored, the fans, mostly young men, jumped around with such reckless joy that they almost tumbled from their rows.
The raucous proceedings, taking place under the watchful gaze of club employees, are believed to be the first team-supported attempt to foster the atmosphere of an avid soccer crowd in the N.H.L. If it catches on, the Senators’ arena will feel less like a library.
“We’re not the loudest building in the league, and we’d like it to be a little louder,” said Cyril Leeder, the Senators’ president, explaining the initiative to enliven the mood and build attendance in one of the N.H.L.’s smallest markets.
I see six Wings, for a long time...
Below, Roussel not happy with penalty call...
A little longer version from HNIC is below...
from Michael Grange of Sportsnet,
The Leafs will host the Boston Bruins on Hockey Night in Canada, the first gathering of the nation’s hockey congregation after a week in which Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent was killed in a targeted hit-and-run attack in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu. Quebec and Cpl. Nathan Cirillo was murdered on the steps of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in the shadow of Parliament. Both deaths are considered acts of terrorism with Canadian soldiers as targets.
The three Canadian NHL teams playing in the early games – Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa — are planning a joint tribute pre-game to Cirillo, the 24-year-old reservist from Hamilton who was part of the Argyle and Sutherland Highlanders of Hamilton and Vincent, an airmen.
It will no doubt be moving. It represents a rare opportunity for millions of Canadians to reflect on a pair of excruciating events, in particular Wednesday’s shooting which resonates both for its powerful symbolism and the smallest details – in Cirillo’s case a six-year-old boy who will be growing up without his big, rugged Dad; a picture of two very sad pups now without a loving owner; while Vincent leaves a sister without her twin.
NEW YORK/TORONTO (October 22, 2014) – The game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators, scheduled for tonight at Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, has been postponed, the National Hockey League announced today.
The date and time of the rescheduled game will be announced at a later date.
The National Hockey League wishes to express its sympathy and prayers to all affected by the tragic events in Ottawa.
Statement from the Toronton Maple Leafs
“The Toronto Maple Leaf Hockey Club extends its deepest condolences to the family and friends of all affected by the tragic events in downtown Ottawa today. The Club supports the National Hockey League’s decision to postpone tonight’s scheduled meeting with the Ottawa Senators.
We have been witness today to some terrible events but are thankful to those brave men and women for their tireless service in protecting everyone’s safety.”
added 1:58pm, Ottawa Senators statement is below...
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
When the Ottawa Senators signed Bobby Ryan to a long-term extension earlier this month, it removed what would have been the team’s biggest distraction in terms of a negative, nagging story line.
But another loose end remains. Top-four blueliner Marc Methot is an unrestricted free agent after the season and contract talks have not produced an extension to this point.
The Senators made a contract offer two weeks ago but to no avail. It’s believed talks will resume this week.
What’s clear is this: the Senators front office does not want this to drag on all season into the trade deadline.
more plus some tanking talk...
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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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