Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Ryan Kennedy at The Hockey News,
Whether by coincidence or design, Toronto, Atlanta and Florida have no captain at all right now and none of those teams are slated to make the playoffs at this juncture.
Yeah, maybe the captaincy is symbolic. Just because you don’t have a letter on your jersey, doesn’t mean you can’t be vocal in the dressing room when things are going pear-shaped. But a look at what even some of the newest captains are doing these days sheds a little light on how symbolism often bleeds over into reality.
Earlier in the week, an unlikely fight occurred in Phoenix when Coyotes young gun Martin Hanzal squared off for the first time in his NHL career with Chicago captain Jonathan Toews. For Toews, it was his first fight ever, according to hockeyfights.com.
from Kyle Turris of Kyle’s Korner at PhoenixCoyotes.com,
After that game, we flew back home for a two-game homestand and now we’re back on the road. We flew into Carolina last night and it was a pretty long flight, just under four hours. Teeks (Viktor Tikhonov) and I played Tiger Woods ‘09 on our PSPs against each other. It’s a fun game and we have some great battles.
Later on this trip we go into New York. I’ve never been, so I’m really looking forward to that. I’ve heard it’s a great place. One of my friends from Wiconsin is a die-hard Rangers fan, and she’s flying back for the game, so it’ll be nice to see her and make her root for us instead.
from Viktor Tikhonov of the Phoenix Coyotes at the Hockey News,
The road is also a good place for practical jokes. The other day we were at a team dinner and everyone was sitting at one big table. Players started clinking their glasses as if someone was going to make a toast, but when I saw a couple of them looking at me, I knew something was going on. Sure enough, I looked down at my shoes and they were covered in ketchup. I got shoe-checked.
After that I was given a mission to shoe-check Turris and Mikkel Boedker. I crawled under the table to get Boedker, but he was sitting next to defenseman Keith Yandle and I got Yandle by accident instead.
Rookie mistake, I guess!
From Brian Costello at The Hockey News,
The fact Wheeler finally made the NHL four years later and is having an impressive offensive impact (six goals and eight points in 13 games with Boston) says a lot about the Coyote scouts who insisted the team take him in the No. 5 spot.
“The kid is going to be a star,” Phoenix hockey operations vice-president Dave Draper said after the 2004 draft. “Sometimes you have to pay a higher price than you’d like or what people would think, but we think we have a real gem.”
from Matthew Sekeres of the Globe and Mail,
If you were looking for reasons why the Phoenix Coyotes lose in excess of $20 million U.S. annually, they were sitting there on press row – all the way down press row. The Coyotes had 28 credential holders, none of them independent media outlets – at GM Place for a 1-0 loss to the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday….
All of it seemed funny, if not for the fact that the Coyotes are NHL have-nots, siphoning money from Canada’s six profitable franchises. In that sense, Canadian ticket-buyers were funding this excursion.
from Steve Gorten of the Sun-Sentinel,
Q: Do you feel you were under appreciated while with the Panthers?
A: “Yeah, but it is part of the business. They had to do everything possible to sell their season tickets. I was there to take the blame. I have no regrets.
“I knew after the year I was gone, but probably the most disappointing thing was I didn’t really get a clear answer. I just heard everything, what was going on, behind the scenes. But I knew I was gone. I just didn’t know where….
Q: Have you been able to get past the incident involving your skate and Richard Zednik’s skate?
A: “I’m just happy to see him playing again. It’s behind now. It’s past. I still wish all the best for the Panthers. I had a good seven years over there. I heard finally they have a good coach there, too, so that’s good.”
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
There is a rather delicious irony in the fact the Phoenix Coyotes are scheduled to host the Florida Panthers Saturday night.
Barring an injury, Olli Jokinen of the Coyotes will play his 735th career game that night against his former team. That appearance will eclipse the all-time dubious NHL record, currently held by former Panthers assistant coach Guy Charron, for most NHL career games played without appearing in a playoff game.
Charron wasn’t aware of the impending history when contacted by The Hockey News Wednesday morning and it’s clear it’s an aspect of his playing career he has grown weary of discussing.
GLENDALE, ARIZONA—Phoenix Coyotes General Manager Don Maloney announced today that the Coyotes have acquired center Alexander Nikulin from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for defenseman Drew Fata.
Nikulin, 23, has scored two goals in five games this season with the Binghamton Senators of the American Hockey League (AHL). Last season, the native of Moscow, Russia recorded 14-36-50 and 34 penalty minutes (PIM) in 71 games for Binghamton. He also appeared in two NHL games with Ottawa.
from Russell Brooks at PhoenixCoyotes.com,
Looking to bring enthusiasm to the bench, Coyotes Head Coach Wayne Gretzky made an extraordinary coaching maneuver Thursday night against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
During the second intermission of Phoenix’s 4-1 victory at Jobing.com Arena, Gretzky decided to move Assistant Coach Doug Sulliman from his normal perch in the press box down to ice level.
“Going into the third period tonight, I just thought we needed another guy there with a little bit of energy,” Gretzky said. “I knew it would energize the players. It was something I was thinking about for the last couple games.”
via Kevin Allen of Mucking and Grinding,
The Phoenix Coyotes have claimed defenseman Ken Klee from Anaheim on re-entry waivers. That means Anaheim will have to pay half of what Klee has remaining on his $1.250 million salary.
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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