Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News,
We’ve talked about the new car smell wearing off and the new-look Stars having to stand on their own, and nowhere is that more clear than in the home record this season. Dallas is 1-1-4. You can talk all you want about that being a .500 mark in terms of points, but it’s not a .500 for the folks in the building. It stinks, and the Stars know it.
“For our fans, I’m frustrated…I know they’re frustrated,” Stars coach Lindy Ruff said. “It’s my job to change it.”...
Dallas has been outscored 13-3 in the third period and overtime on home ice. They are pretty much melting down. Much of it is the same problem, risky passes that don’t need to be made, or a power play that saps energy rather than creates it. Some of it is inconsistent from night to night _ like whether or not they get the big save at the right time.
The result is your team looks like a mess.
TARASENKO, ALLEN LEAD BLUES TO SIXTH STRAIGHT WIN . . .
Vladimir Tarasenko scored the lone goal at 4:55 of the third period and Jake Allen stopped all 26 shots he faced to lead the Blues to their sixth consecutive victory.
* Tarasenko found the back of the net for the third consecutive game and now has 7-2—9 in his last five outings. He leads the Blues with eight goals and 14 points this season.
* Allen recorded his second consecutive shutout (also 24 saves Oct. 30 vs. ANA) and the third of his NHL career. He hasn’t allowed a goal in his last 128:03 of playing time dating to Oct. 23 vs. VAN.
* According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Allen is just the second rookie in Blues history to earn consecutive shutouts. The other: Ernie Wakely, who did so during the 1969-70 season (Jan. 3 vs. PIT and Jan. 15 vs. TOR).
* The Blues picked up their fifth victory in their last six meetings with the Devils dating to March 20, 2010. These clubs close their home-and-home set Thursday in St. Louis.
Watch the hit below...
via Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times,
Several hours later, following a cathartic 5-0 victory over the Canadiens, Toews did his best to put a brave face on a new concern — an injured Patrick Sharp, who will be out “a bit” with an apparent right knee injury, according to coach Joel Quenneville. For Kris Versteeg, “a bit” meant a couple of weeks. For Daniel Carcillo, it meant a month. Quenneville said he’d know more in the next day or so.
Sharp was hurt in the third period when he was hit in the corner by Alexei Emelin. Sharp had to be helped off the ice and back to the dressing room.
With Carcillo already sidelined, that leaves the Hawks with just 11 healthy forwards, meaning a call-up is imminent.
“We’ve got some guys that have some skill and want more ice time,” Quenneville said. “So we’ll see how that works out. A lot of important ice time [is available], and someone should look to take advantage of that.”
A video recap of the 12 games played last night in the NHL.
Again, it’s not the results that concern me as much as the lack of emotion, the lack of fire that I see. For whatever reason, the Avs just don’t seem all that excited to play hockey this year. It’s such a change from all that fun of last year. Did everybody getting paid (don’t forget, this team is almost maxed out against the cap) get everybody complacent?
The Kroenke family sure isn’t going to want to hear that if so. The players got their money, but so far they’re coming up a day late and a dollar short on effort and passion.
I won’t panic with any team until at least the 25-30 game mark. We’re still only at game No. 14. So, time for panic? No. Time for some real concern? Uh, yeah.
-Adrian Dater of All Things Avs after the Avalance 5-2 loss to the Canucks. Read more on this topic from Dater.
from Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press,
Sustainable success in the NHL is almost always underpinned by strong team defence. Keeping the puck out of the net comes first for winning teams.
The Jets have been unable or unwilling to grasp this concept for long stretches of play in the three previous seasons they've played in Winnipeg. Paul Maurice declared it his priority No. 1 heading into the off-season and so far his message is being heard.
Maurice wanted his team's goals against to improve. It has and the direct correlation has been wins. The Jets have allowed just seven goals in their last seven games and won six of them while collecting points in each one.
They've shot up the standings from last in the Central Division to third and now own a 7-5-1 mark.
Another key statistic for the Jets right now is Pavelec's save percentage, which bumped up to .924 after he stopped 23 of 24 shots Tuesday against the Predators.
from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,
Should Wilson end up making such a request in the coming days, weeks, even months, Thornton leaves you with the impression that it wouldn’t matter anyway. After he and fellow longtime Shark Patrick Marleau inked extensions back in January, he claims it is his desire to remain in a San Jose jersey for the remainder of his hockey life.
“That’s my plan,” he said. “I signed a three-year extension (worth $20.25 million US) last season in the intent to finish my career as a Shark.”
Even if other teams make a grand pitch to woo him?
“Yes, that’s still my intent (to stay),” he said....
After an internet item last week suggested the Leafs were again looking at the Sharks forward, colleague Terry Koshan immediately received a question from a fan during a Toronto Sun Live Chat about a possible trade scenario involving Thornton. It wasn’t the first time Jumbo Joe’s name has come up in such speculation - and it certainly won’t be the last.
“It’s flattering, sure, that other teams would want to trade assets to acquire me, for sure,” Thornton said. “It’s just like any employee who works for Ford and GM wants you. It’s flattering. That’s the way I look at it.”
via Shawn Mitchell of Puck-Rakers,
“We were a reactionary team. That’s the way we played the whole game. We reacted to the way they were playing, the score, the referees, we were reacting to all that instead of playing a proactive game and going after it. Emotions aside, the anger, all that – it’s extremely disappointing. For a group that prides itself on work and battle and competing, we had very little of that.” – (Todd) Richards.
via Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette,
Subban, who signed a $72-million contract prior to the season, is minus-6 in the past two games and said he’s one of the players who has to be better.
“I’ll be accountable,” he said. “You can write whatever you want about me. If we win 6-0, I think I should be better. It starts with guys setting the tone and I’m one of the guys who has to do that. Let’s see what happens tomorrow.”...
“We have to do a better job of sticking to the plan,” said Subban. “We got away from it. They got some bounces, but they stuck to their plan.”
via Jonas Siegel of TSN,
Randy Carlyle could only sigh at the awful manner in which his team started in the Arizona desert.
"Turtle start," he said regretfully afterward, "it was slower than slow."
"It's a bad start," said Dion Phaneuf after the 3-2 loss to Arizona, who had won just twice in the previous eight games. "It's unacceptable to start that way. When you have a start like that it puts you behind the eight-ball and we were playing catch-up all night."
I see six Wings, for a long time...
Below, Roussel not happy with penalty call...
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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