Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jason Kay of the Hockey News,
How entertaining was the contest? The worn-out beat reporters sitting on press row – men and women who after two months of travel typically pray for the final to end in a sweep, regardless of who wins – were standing in OT ...for good chunks of it anyway. It’s the first game I can recall attending in years where I felt nervous energy as a paid neutral observer.
“That was probably one of the best games for a long time,” said Penguins coach Michel Therrien. “And it’s fun.”
The question now is how does the NHL build off it; what can the league do to help sustain the momentum it has built?
Scotty talks game 5, GM meeting, coaching situation in Toronto and other hockey topics with the Morning Show on Fan590 In Toronto.
Go here to listen…
from Jim Kelley at Sportsnet,
This must be what it feels like when the air tank runs dry just metres from the top of Mt. Everest.
It must be what the dirt tastes like when the Triple Crown is lost on some longshot’s improbable last leap to the wire.
This must be the way the Andretti family goes home from Indianapolis.
What else can you say about how the Detroit Red Wings were denied the Stanley Cup Monday night at Joe Louis Arena?
from Jean-Sebestien Giguere at the LA Times,
In Game 6, hopefully Pittsburgh will draw a little bit of energy from this win. The Penguins seemed to be a tired team out there. They’ll be in front of their fans and hopefully they’ll give them some energy.
They can’t rely so much on Fleury. They’ve got to try to play in their zone more. Try to put some pucks on net and don’t just keep throwing the puck down the middle. Those little blind passes are what Detroit thrives on. They’re going to have to keep their game a little more simple.
As far as Detroit goes, I don’t think it has to change much. Maybe play a little bit better defensively. But it went to six periods. I think they played well for the most part. If I’m Detroit, I’m telling myself that Game 6 is a must-win.
more on Game 5 and 6…
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
After next season, Pittsburgh has only Crosby, Sergei Gonchar, Ryan Whitney and Kris Letang under contract. That will be the time when Shero will have to figure out ways to try and pay Malkin and Staal as they hit unrestricted free agency. Malkin, it’s quite likely, will be looking for the same $9 million Crosby gets, or even more….
That said, Detroit has really only one major decision to make this summer and that’s how much to offer unrestricted blueliner Brad Stuart. The Wings’ next challenge will be to sign Henrik Zetterberg and Johan Franzen in the summer of ‘09, but they have a history of being able to sign top players for less than market value.
So the team to watch after this Cup final might not be the Penguins. It could still be the Wings.
more on the Pens cap situation…
from Empty Netters,
-The Penguins had no business winning that game. They were thoroughly outplayed for most of it.
-That was easily the highlight of our hockey-watching lives. We watched the four overtime game against the Capitals in 1996 and the five overtime game against the Flyers in 2000 on television. Those were memorable experiences, but they both pale in being able to witness Game 5 of a Stanley Cup final in person.
from Jamie Fitzpatrick at About.com,
Not everybody likes endless overtime. After a marathon Stanley Cup game there’s always someone moaning that it takes too long.
Those folks say the NHL should solve its overtime “problem” by taking shortcuts. Like maybe a shootout.
If you hate drama, tension, great saves and unexpected heroes, truncated overtime is a great idea. But as the Pittsburgh Penguins and Detroit Red Wings demonstrated on Monday, it’s a dumb idea for anyone who loves hockey.
from Ron Cook of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
All of the Penguins were too tired after 109:57 of tense, grueling hockey to revel too much in the win. There was no time for that. There’s still too much work to be done. To win the Cup, the Penguins must beat the Red Wings in Game 6 at Mellon Arena tomorrow night, then again in Game 7 here Saturday night.
The odds still heavily favor the Red Wings.
But, at least, Detroit’s big red machine no longer looks quite so invincible.
Not after the Red Wings blew a 3-2 lead in the final minute of regulation.
from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
I think Michel ‘Call me Mike’ Therrien deserves a pat on the back for the moves he made in Game 5 - and I don’t think he’s gotten too many pats on the back in these playoffs.
The moves weren’t huge but they got some good chemistry going. He moved Tyler Kennedy onto a line with Evgeni Malkin and I thought Kennedy played inspired hockey.
Transcript from a brief media session with Detroit Red Wings player Niklas Kronwall.
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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