Kukla's Korner Hockey
New York/Prague—The dream of bringing NHL hockey to Prague, Czech Republic, became a reality today as Prague Mayor Pavel Bem hosted representatives from the New York Rangers, Tampa Bay Lightning and the National Hockey League at the city’s Old Town City Hall. The group officially announced that as part of “NHL Premiere 2008” the Rangers and Lightning will open the 2008-09 NHL regular season with two games against each other Oct. 4th and 5th at the newly-named O2 Arena in Prague.
The Pittsburgh Penguins and Ottawa Senators will also open the 2008-09 regular season Oct. 4th and 5th in Europe, with two games in Stockholm, Sweden.
A little late, but Empty Netters has invaded Washington D.C. and is live blogging from the game…
via the Pittsburgh Penguins,
The Pittsburgh Penguins’ website, www.pittsburghpenguins.com, ranked No. 1 among NHL clubs in U.S. website traffic during the month of January.
The Penguins’ website moved up from a second-place ranking in U.S. traffic in the month of December.
For both months, www.pittsburghpenguins.com was ranked fourth worldwide among NHL team sites.
The data and rankings were compiled by comScore Networks
via the AP,
Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby is coming back from an ankle injury and will play against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night.
added 12:57pm, more on Crosby at the Pens website...
The NHL provided a media conference call with Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin today. To interpret for Evgeni, Sergei Gonchar joined in on the call.
Earlier today, Evgeni was named First Star for the month of February after leading the league in scoring with 9 goals and 17 assists for 26 points in 14 games. He currently sits first in overall NHL scoring with 88 points on 37 goals and 51 assists. The Penguins are tied atop the Eastern Conference standings with Montréal, each with 81 points.
Q. Evgeni, can you tell me if you’re seeing different players checking you than before when Sidney Crosby was playing in terms of like different defensemen against you and different centers playing against you?
from Darren Eliot at Sports Illustrated,
So, right now in Pittsburgh there is satisfaction in the season thus far, and rightly so. But that mood pales in comparison to the anticipation of what might yet be. Everyone wants to see what this team looks like fully assembled. Shero smiled broadly when I put that premise to him and he offered a sly, “We’ll see.”
Penguins’ fans who have been waiting patiently will see all the pieces in place during the first week of March. No doubt, the organization envisions this group together during the first week of June, perhaps with the Stanley Cup in hand.
from jenniejenniewho’s at NHL Connect,
The hockey gods are one of the best things about hockey; they are the mystical forces that let you believe things will work themselves out. If they don’t, it wasn’t meant to be.
The hockey gods take the pressure off fandom. Sure, the fact that Marian Hossa got hurt in his debut with the Penguins seems terrible, but the hockey gods know why it happened. You hope against hope it’s to set up an stirring comeback that coincides with Sidney Crosby’s return to the ice; you like to think the hockey gods will make it a game that will be talked about for ages, one that vaults the Penguins to the top of the Eastern Conference,
from Spector’s Blog at Fox Sports,
Malkin’s performance will likely merit him consideration for the Hart Trophy as the NHL’s most valuable player. I still believe Alexander Ovechkin will win it, but Malkin’s performance means it’s no longer a sure thing.
It also puts pressure upon the Penguins management to lock up Malkin a year before he becomes a restricted free agent as they did with Crosby last summer, but like Crosby it’s gonna cost them, probably in the neighborhood of $8.5 million per season.
From the CP via TSN,
But it’s not all bad news. Hossa considered himself fortunate to have avoided anything more disastrous than the mild sprain of his medial collateral ligament he did suffer.
With the Penguins in Ottawa to face the Senators on Saturday, Hossa, wearing a brace, was able to work out off the ice to rehab his knee while his teammates ran through a practice at Scotiabank Place on Friday afternoon.
‘‘It’s bad news, but it’s also good news because I didn’t know what to expect and it’s a first-degree MCL and it should be better within hopefully a week,’’ he said.
From the Boston Bruins,
“You know, re-breaking your nose—I broke it again back in Florida—the last thing you want to do is get in a fight with a broken nose,” said Lucic, laughing at the incredulity of the action. “It’s probably the most fragile thing, even when it’s healthy.
In fact, earlier on the night, Lucic begged off an encounter with Pittsburgh’s noted heavyweight, and Sidney Crosby’s bodyguard, Georges Laraque.
“He felt I was running around,” said Lucic, in reference to his noticeable physical play throughout the evening. “I said, ‘No thanks. I’ve got a broken nose and I need to stay away from this one.’”
But he didn’t stay away from the next one. Milan Lucic and Jarkko Ruutu go for it—video from the Bruins below…
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org