Kukla's Korner Hockey
No penalty on the play and Moore was taken off the ice on a stretcher.
added 4:32pm, Wilson on the hit below...
from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,
- Even if Columbus’s hot streak cools off, the Blue Jackets should have tucked away enough points to secure a playoff spot. They’re doing so even while carrying several bad contracts. They are paying Scott Hartnell $4.75 million annually to be their fourth-line left wing. Brandon Dubinsky is their No. 2 center, but the ex-Ranger, due $5.85 million per year through 2021, does not look like a good long-term bet. David Clarkson is on long-term injured reserve because of a bad back, but his $5.25 million annual payday, good through 2020, is just about impossible to scrub from their books. GM Jarmo Kekalainen will likely have to move a player to give Alexander Wennberg the raise he requires when he reaches restricted status in July.
- The Red Wings, counting down their final days at Joe Louis Arena, paid tribute to their 1997 championship team. What a roster, including Steve Yzerman, Nicklas Lidstrom, Brendan Shanahan, Sergei Fedorov, Tomas Holmstrom, Igor Larionov, Darren McCarty, Vladimir Konstantinov, Chris Osgood. In comparison, the current Detroit roster does not look like it will be chasing the Cup for a while. The Red Wings are committed long term to some dreadful deals: Henrik Zetterberg (just over $6 million annually through 2021), Danny DeKeyser ($5 million, 2022), and Niklas Kronwall ($4.75 million, 2019). At the same time, aside from Dylan Larkin, Detroit does not have many young players looking like sure things. The Wings’ 25-year playoff streak is likely to end this season. Given the state of their roster, it’s unknown when the next streak will begin.
many more topics...
The puck drops just after 3:30pm ET and is on the NHL Network. TSN coverage starts at 2:30pm and is on TSN1, TSN3, TSN4, TSN5 and TSN 4K.
Both teams are 3-0 in the Group B Bracket
from Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star,
Given both teams are guaranteed berths in the quarter-finals next week in Montreal, this one’s about bragging rights.
“It’s a rivalry that’s gone back a long time,” said Canada captain Dylan Strome. “The world juniors, you think of Canada-U.S. on New Year’s Eve. The story is there. We have to write another chapter in that storied rivalry.”
Matt Barzal, who scored twice against Latvia, said it’s in players’ DNA to compete flat-out regardless of the stakes.
“It’s for first place,” said Barzal. “You’re playing for your country. You don’t want to let anybody beat you. I’m sure they’re thinking the same way.”...
The Americans are led by Coyotes prospect Clayton Keller (three goals, two assists) and London Knights goalie Tyler Parsons.
“We just have to go out there, relax and take it to Canada,” said Parsons.
“It will be a great game, something you dream about as a kid, playing Canada on New Year’s Day,” added Keller.
Puck drops just after 6:00pm ET tonight...
from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
Not only will Saturday’s game be the first time two NHL teams meet with simultaneous win streaks of at least seven games, it’ll be the first time in NHL, NBA, MLB and NFL history two teams meet with win streaks of at least 12 games, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
That historical significance was “cool” and “neat” to everybody Friday, and while Wild players expect the crowd to be buzzing and are aware a ticket to the game is suddenly a hot commodity, both teams took different tacks after their respective practices.
Inside the Wild locker room, player after player echoed their coach by noting it’s “just Game 36” and the game’s worth two points just like every other.
“It’s not the Super Bowl, it’s not the Stanley Cup,” Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said. “It’s Game 36. It’s got a good, little story line, but that’s all it is.”
But Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella offered a different message, saying that in the monotony of an 82-game season, he’s happy the players have something to get excited about.
“I want our guys to revel in it,” said Tortorella, before noting that his team actually hasn’t played well this last little stretch. “Both teams deserve a lot of credit and they should feel good about what they’ve brought here, where they’re at. We know there’s a streak, we know there’s a streak over there. I’m glad we’re going to have an opportunity to play in this type of game.
from Sam Carchidi of Philly.com,
They lost a game and a goalie on Friday night at the SAP Center, dropping a 2-0 decision to the physical San Jose Sharks.
Goalie Steve Mason injured his left hand in a first-period collision with Joe Thornton and was replaced by Anthony Stolarz to start the second period. Mason kept the Flyers in the game during a San Jose-dominated opening period, stopping 11 of 12 shots.
General manager Ron Hextall said Mason was "nicked up and we'll know more" on Saturday.
The Flyers, who have lost five of six since their 10-game winning streak ended, play in Anaheim on Sunday.
more on the game
Watch the highlight package below, which includes the Mason injury...
via Kevin Kurz of CSN BayArea,
Despite leading 2-0 in the final minute, the Sharks went all out to preserve the shutout for their teammate in net. The Flyers pulled goalie Anthony Stolarz and got set up in the offensive zone, when a Shayne Gostisbehere slap shot deflected up into the face of Vlasic, who was protecting the crease.
The defenseman took several moments to get to his skates, and was eventually helped to the dressing room. DeBoer, who said that Vlasic was unlikely to play in Los Angeles on Saturday, offered the following update after the game:
“As bad as it looked and as bad as it probably is, I’ve got my fingers crossed. The initial reports are that I don’t believe it’s that serious, so that’s good,” he said.
Braun revealed that the shot hit Vlasic underneath the visor. He saw him after the game, and said, “He looks alright. A little swollen. It's hard to see your teammate take one of those, as bad as it looked.”
And Braun’s message to his D partner?
“I told him, ‘good block.’"
Viktor Arvidssson beats Jay Bouwmeester then Jake Allen. The Predators defeated the Blues 4-0.
Home Team in Caps
CAROLINA 3, Chicago 2
Nashville 4, ST. LOUIS 0
SAN JOSE 2, Philadelphia 0
VANCOUVER 3, Anaheim 2 (OT)
STRONG BETWEEN THE PIPES
The Sharks, Predators and Hurricanes rode strong goaltending performances to wins on Friday:
* Aaron Dell stopped all 21 shots he faced to earn his first career NHL shutout and Patrick Marleau (1-1—2) factored on both San Jose goals to lead the Pacific Division-leading Sharks (23-12-1, 47 points) to their fourth consecutive victory.
* Juuse Saros made 25 saves and Filip Forsberg (1-1—2) and Mike Ribeiro (0-2—2) contributed multi-point efforts to lead the Predators to victory. Saros improved to 3-2-1 this season (1.16 GAA, .957 SV%), allowing no more than one goal in five of six starts.
* Cam Ward made 27 saves and Jay McClement notched the game-winning goal as the Hurricanes extended their home point streak to 11 games (10-0-1). Ward made his 11th consecutive start in the Hurricanes goal, posting a 6-2-2 mark over that span (2.34 GAA, .913 SV%, 1 SO).
from the CP at Sportsnet,
The NHL is working on a plan to move forward with or without the 2018 Olympics.
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said Friday afternoon that the league has begun working with teams on two different scheduling scenarios, one that would see NHL players attend the Games in South Korea almost 14 months from now and one that would see them sit out for the first time since 1994.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman had previously indicated the need for an Olympic decision by January, though no firm deadline was ever given. An alternative schedule accommodating the Olympics would seem to suggest a softening toward that time frame.
"We’re not the ones imposing any kind of deadline," Daly said. "We’ll see what the IOC and the IIHF’s timetable is; obviously I think the players have flexibility. We won’t be setting the deadline."
via Sportsnet from 12/30/2011,
"People ask me all the time about my records, but to me, that's my favourite," Gretzky said in an interview with canada.com. "They're all made to be broken, that's what sports is. That's what's so great about sports, but that's my favourite because I think that will be the hardest to break."
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
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