Kukla's Korner Hockey
via Frank Seravalli of the Philadelphia Daily News,
A routine Flyers practice trickled to a halt on Friday afternoon when goaltender Steve Mason went down with an apparently significant injury.
About 30 minutes after the team entered the ice, the net was immediately moved out the way as concerned teammates and coaches huddled around Mason.
It was not apparent what caused the injury or exactly what was ailing Mason.
He originally laid flat on his back in the crease. Eventually, he sat up with the help of trainer Jim McCrossin, before being helped off the ice.
Craib Berube was just on TSN Radio and said no idea what happened nor what the problem is at this point.
Flyers GM Ron Hextall updated the media following the team’s flight to Toronto on the status of goaltender Steve Mason, who left practice with an injury.
“Steve Mason has an upper-body injury and is out for the weekend. We will have an update on Monday.”
The Flyers play back-to-back games over the weekend, taking on the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre on Saturday before traveling to Winnipeg to take on the Jets on Sunday night.
Mason stopped 31 of 32 shots and four of six players in the shootout to take a 2-1 loss in the Flyers-Panthers game on Thursday.
He has started three straight and 11 of the Flyers’ last 13 games while posting an overall record of 6-10-5 to go along with a 2.49 goals-against average and .921 save percentage in 22 appearances this year.
from Richard Deistsch of Sports Illustrated,
THE PICK: Mike Emrick (NBC Sports)
Emrick has been praised often in this space over the years. The rare sports broadcaster exalted both by fans and critics, he had another exceptional year in 2014 including calling the Olympic hockey tournament and the Stanley Cup playoffs. The latter was exhausting: Emrick called one overtime game in the opening round (Game 4 between the Bruins and Red Wings), one overtime game in the second round (Game 1, Rangers-Penguins), two overtime games in the conference finals (Games 3 and 4 between the Rangers-Canadians) and two overtime games in Stanley Cup Finals (Games 2 and the clinching Game 5 between the Rangers-Kings).
What struck me most this year about Emrick during the playoffs was when he chose silence. He stopped talking for 1 minute and 50 seconds following his call of Alec Martinez's Stanley Cup-winning goal for the Kings. Viewers heard crowd horns blaring, Kings players' whooping it up on the ice, and the winning goal announcement from the public address announcer. What they did not hear was Emrick, which was perfect. During games, he is part wordsmith, part historian, but most of all, he is the consummate professional.
more on the numerous awards and nice to see Tim Thompson getting a mention too...
from Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated,
There have been whispers of the Bruins and Blues circling each other for weeks now, but the initial scuttlebutt suggested something smaller was in the works—maybe a deal for the rights to malcontent center (and former Bruin) Vladimir Sobotka, who is currently plying his trade in the faltering KHL. But as the two teams struggle to meet preseason expectations, it's thought that the pot has gotten a little richer and could well include a swap of top-six wingers.
The appeal of Lucic to the Blues is obvious. If they hope to get past the Blackhawks, Ducks and Kings they need to be heavier up front. And Lucic, when he's on his game, is as heavy as they come.
Boston, meanwhile, needs someone that can help them set a higher pace. A bit of an edge would be nice, but speed and scoring touch are paramount. Oshie is struggling this season, but is coming off a 21-goal, 60-point campaign highlighted by his stunning performance in the Olympics for Team USA. He has the wheels and the tools to fill that hole.
more plus other NHL topics...
via the Pittsburgh Penguins,
Defenseman Olli Maatta has tested positive for the mumps and remains in isolation, Pittsburgh Penguins General Manager Jim Rutherford announced today.
Goaltender Thomas Greiss and defenseman Robert Bortuzzo have tested negative.
REMINDER: HOLIDAY ROSTER FREEZE
For all players on an NHL active roster, injured reserve, or with non-roster and injured non-roster status as of midnight (local time) tonight, a roster freeze shall apply through midnight (local time) on Saturday, Dec. 27, with respect to waivers, trades and loans, subject to the exceptions provided for in CBA Article 16.5 (d).
The Capitals, Hurricanes and Kings recorded victories on Thursday to halt the winning streaks of the Blue Jackets (7), Maple Leafs (6) and Blues (5), respectively.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
Sometimes we talk in terms of Superman and Kryptonite when we're talking about the effect the Montreal Canadiens have on the Boston Bruins. The same dynamic is at play when the St. Louis Blues visit the Los Angeles Kings.
The Blues jumped out to a 3-0 first-period lead at Staples Center Thursday night only to have the Kings outscore them 6-1 the rest of the way en route to a wild 6-4 win. According to the Kings' PR staff, the win was the sixth in a row for the Kings over the Blues on home ice.
The Blues have not won in Los Angeles since March 2011. More importantly for a Kings team just hanging around in the Pacific Division, the win marked an explosive night for the team's top players as Anze Kopitar had a five-point night (1 goal, four assists) and Marian Gaborik extended his goal-scoring streak to three games with a pair. He has five goals and one assist over that period. Both Gaborik and Kopitar have been beset by injuries and their production has been uncharacteristically tepid through the first 30 games of the season. If Thursday is any indication, though, look out Blues and look out Western Conference.
read on for Custance on Mike Green and the Capitals, LeBrun on Saku Koivu and Strang on the Jets...
from Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet,
- With the Holiday Trade Freeze rapidly approaching, Boston and St. Louis are two interesting teams to watch, not just because they’ve been talking to each other. Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli is contacting teams with space, seeing what it will cost for them to take players off his roster, so he can free up room to do what he wants. Curious to see if those second-round selections he acquired for Johnny Boychuk are in his plans. For both Chiarelli and Blues’ compatriot Doug Armstrong, it’s not just about this year. Boston, in a tight spot, must deal with Dougie Hamilton, Torey Krug and Reilly Smith in the summer. Armstrong knows the next two years mean extensions for Jake Allen, Jori Lehtera, Jaden Schwartz and breakout sensation Vladimir Tarasenko. With all of the cap uncertainty, you’ve got to be careful.
- If your team is looking for defencemen, watch Anaheim. Ben Lovejoy’s return gives them eight blueliners, with Eric Brewer (expected to be back in January) making nine. That gives Bob Murray some flexibility. Winnipeg added Jay Harrison to stop the bleeding, and Minnesota is another team looking for depth there.
- If there’s one thing Arizona needs, it’s young forwards who can score. That’s the key to Keith Yandle (A nice, high draft pick wouldn’t hurt, either). But Don Maloney is making it clear that he will not do anything with Yandle unless it provides a long-term solution. It’s also possible some teams who don’t desperately need a centre take a look at Antoine Vermette. He can play the wing, and versatility never hurts.
more including Cory Sarich wants one more shot at the NHL...
from Alex Prewitt of Capitals Insider,
Here was the Mike Green everyone knew, or at least the one everyone remembered, revived and tearing through all three zones, while everyone else tried to catch up. He zipped across the defensive blue line. He caught one opponent flat-footed and blew straight past. He faked a slap shot and raced by another. He bolted through the right faceoff circle, curled parallel to the goal line, angled himself and, with a simple nudge, slipped the winning pass back into the middle as the Blue Jackets stared.
“He looks slow, but he’s buzzing pretty fast,” forward Michael Latta said. “Hell of a player.”
“Ghost-like,” Coach Barry Trotz said later. “You might not notice him, might not notice them, then – bang – he’s there on offense and he creates something.”
Game highlights are below...
“You know players in the league who dive a lot and embellish a little bit. It’s good to single them out. Maybe they’ll be a little embarrassed.
“We don’t need that in the game. We don’t need it to turn into soccer, where it’s embarrassing and where you get rewarded for it.
“Nobody wants to be known as a diver. I hope it stops, it’s a garbage part of the game and it should be out.”
-John Scott of the San Jose Sharks. More diving reaction and some Edmonton Oilers notes from Robert Tychkowski if the Edmonton Sun.
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
This phenomenon – of starting over again – is not something teams want to acknowledge, because it makes everybody look bad; and really amounts to the hardest sell in professional sport.
Teams genuinely believe they cannot turn to their fan base and blurt out the painful reality – that Plan A didn’t work and so now, they’re off to Plan B. Just trust us, this one will work better. Really, it will....
f the Oilers continue to struggle, they’ll have a chance to land a Toews-like piece in either Connor McDavid or Jack Eichel in the 2015 NHL entry draft. The question they’ll need to ask – and this is why MacTavish is behind the bench right now – is which of the players from spinning-their-wheels stage of the team’s rebuild survive, and which ones move on?
more and Duhatschek uses the Chicago Blackhawks as an example...
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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