Kukla's Korner Hockey
I have avoided the Stamkos 'twitter like' because, well, it is just foolish to think Stamkos would like a tweet to give hints on his next destination.
Instead, I feel Stamkos won't sign anything until the salary cap number is set for next season, time is on his side.
Heck, he may even test the UFA market which is his prerogative. I will also say he won't be traded at the trade deadline unless the Bolts are out of the playoff picture.
And, someone tell me why he would go to the Leafs as a UFA? Yes, it is his hometown but the Leafs have at least a few more years of rebuilding and by that time, Stamkos would be past his prime.
from Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune,
And then came more social media madness on Wednesday, after his Twitter account showed he “liked’’ a story on TSN asking fans whether or not the Toronto Maple Leafs should pursue the pending unrestricted free agent and Toronto native this summer, should Stamkos not re-sign with Tampa Bay.
Just like the summer of 2014, when Stamkos set the social media world ablaze when he hit “favorite’’ on a story in The Hockey News asking whether he would be the next LeBron James and return to play for his hometown team, Stamkos called it an “accident,” a slip of the thumb.
Such is the world Stamkos lives in, where his every move is examined for any miniscule hint about his future.
I like Bob McKenzie's remark too...
“For the guys that go on the ice now, it’s less important to score – it’s more important not to get scored on. I really believe that with these fourth-line players there’s less pressure to score – just don’t be a minus.
“And then if they advance the puck, if they finish their shift in the other team’s end, they’ve had a great shift. So I’d like to see them get back to the importance of scoring on everybody.”
-Marty McSorley. Read more from McSorley from Colleen Toms of the Brant News.
from John Shannon of Sportsnet,
It’s just over 3,200 kilometres from Rexall Place to Madison Square Garden.
Different country and certainly a very different city.
At first blush, there appears to be little in common between the capital of Alberta and the business capital of the world.
Except there is this hockey thing. A love of puck for a hardcore group of fans. Rabid Rangers pride and loyal Oilers faithful, these fans are as passionate and vocal as any. The Oilers have won five Stanley Cups, the Rangers four.
Another real bond exists between these clubs that has left a lasting impression on both NHL franchises for over 50 years: Glen Sather.
The longtime coach, general manager and executive will be honoured by the Oilers with a banner raising at Rexall Place on Friday ahead of Edmonton's game against the Rangers.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
It occurred to me the other day as I observed the fuss in Montreal over whether the Canadiens had properly followed concussion protocol with Nathan Beaulieu after he took a hard punch in a fight with the Columbus Blue Jackets' Nick Foligno. (The NHL said the Habs properly followed protocol.)
What I couldn't help but think in the days afterward was that the wrong debate was being held. Shouldn't we be asking why the NHL still allows bare-knuckle fighting?
At a time when we know so much more about brain damage in sports, are we really still debating the merits of fighting in hockey?
There is no question fighting is way, way down and appears headed toward extinction, eventually. The game is about speed, and traditional enforcers can't keep up with the pace, so fights are disappearing by the day.
But why not push it there more quickly? Why not throw two combatants out of the game for a fight? Period. That would push it down to a sprinkling of fights a year.
I've said this before, but it just seems so hypocritical to have introduced Rule 48 (illegal hit to the head) in 2010 but still allow bare-knuckle punches.
NEVER SAY NEVER
Three of Wednesday’s four games saw teams overcome third-period deficits en route to victories. Overall, there have been 159 comeback wins through 420 games played this season, including 66 in the third period.
from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,
With the NHL having put into gear preparations for its 100th anniversary birthday bash for the calendar year of 2017, the league’s Centennial celebrations might be the perfect time to make such a dramatic, arguably long overdue, switch.
While they are still very much in the initial stages, such discussions -- and, in this case, debates -- have taken place inside the NHL offices. And while we are a long way away from a concrete decision being made, there is no denying it has been a topic of conversation and will continue to be moving forward.
The league means no disrespect to the memories of the likes of Frank Calder, Art Ross and the gang but, in actuality, many of the modern day hockey zealots would only know who those illustrious names actually were by firing up their laptops and looking them up on Google.
Should that, in itself, be a reason for change? Of course not. Historical contributions to the sport should never be forgotten.
Perhaps a stronger factor in the argument to switch things up, is the reality that most of the awards right now are not named after players. The Vezina Trophy, honouring Habs legendary goaltender Georges Vezina, is one of the few exceptions.
The goal was reviewed by the NHL then Patrick Roy challenged it...
from Terry Frei of the Denver Post,
"My opinion is this is a call that should go to Toronto, not the referees on the ice," Roy said. "Why? You're watching some games and you see the same call made and they disallow the goal. There's not enough consistency. I think we need consistency in those calls, what it is, what should be goalie interference and not. Right now, the referees on the ice, it's a tough call for him. I think they have enough pressure on the ice, enough on their hands during games. I think that should be a call made by Toronto, in my opinion, because you're going to have more consistency."
more on the Avs 4-2 loss to the Penguins...
from Les Carpenter of The Guardian,
The code. The code. The code. That’s all that mattered in those days. Maybe it’s all that matters still. Hockey has always been a referendum on intrepidness. Who’s a tough guy? Who is not?
Former NHL referee Paul Stewart can still hear the words thundering down from a boss when back trouble forced him to lug his gear through airports and train stations in a rolling travel bag rather than one thrown over his shoulder.
“You look like a fag.”
This wasn’t that long ago. Stewart only retired in 2003, and the rolling bag came a few years before that – maybe a little before he found he had stage three colon cancer in the middle of a 1,000-game NHL officiating career. Always the code. Always be tough. The word he despised was “pussy”. It was tossed around rinks like a mark of shame. Use a rolling bag? You’re a pussy. Wear a helmet? What a pussy. Dare to say your head doesn’t feel right after it cracked against the ice? Don’t be a pussy.
So Stewart said nothing about the ringing in his skull on those nights after especially hard hits. To admit the confusion, the nausea, the gaps in recollection would be labeled a pussy, and there was no room for pussies in professional hockey. It’s only now, more than a decade after his last game, with nothing to lose, no reputation to risk that Stewart finally tells the truth. All those concussions the football players get that are also the domain of the hockey enforcers? Well, referees get those too. It’s just something nobody talks about.
George Stroumboulopoulos sits down with Montreal Canadiens owner Geoff Molson, Tampa Bay Lightning Chairman Jeff Vinik, and Executive Chairman of the Winnipeg Jets Mark Chipman about the stress that comes from being behind the scenes of a NHL team.
Part two is below...
via Ian MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun,
Canuck defenceman Dan Hamhuis was taken to hospital after taking a Dan Boyle slapshot in the face late in the game. Vancouver coach Willie Desjardins said Hamhuis probably suffered a broken jaw, which would keep him from playing for weeks.
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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