Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
Before we continue, crow must be eaten. We promised to run through the press box naked at the Stanley Cup finals if Claude Lemieux’s NHL comeback bid came to fruition. Ahem, media colleagues, you’ve been forewarned. Please make sure to have eaten dinner before we make good on our promise next June.
“That’s why we called him up,” Sharks GM Doug Wilson, joking of course, told us Monday.
We weren’t the only ones to make fun of this comeback bid. The laughter was universal around the hockey world. And Lemieux took notice.
“I got into this with my eyes wide open, knowing that most folks out there would think that I was out of my mind to attempt to do something like this,” Lemieux told a bunch of us media folk on a conference call Monday. “But it’s OK. I’ve had no problem taking criticism along the way. It motivated me even more. It’s been a fun road.”
more and a Rob Blake update plus some Flyers talk…
added 6:42pm, from Kevin Allen of Mucking and Grinding,
Essentially, Lemieux has a master’s in knowing how to win. That could be very important to the Sharks, given their history of playoff failures.
SAN JOSE – San Jose Sharks Executive Vice President and General Manager Doug Wilson announced today that the club has reassigned forwards Brad Staubitz and Tom Cavanagh to the Worcester Sharks, the team’s top development affiliate in the American Hockey League and recalled forward Claude Lemieux.
The team also placed defenseman Brad Lukowich on injured reserve, retroactive to Jan. 6.
Lemieux has played in 23 games with Worcester, posting 11 points (3-8=11), 24 penalty minutes and a +2 rating. He was originally signed by San Jose as a free agent on Dec. 29, 2007.
via Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
With all due respect to Ken Holland (Detroit Red Wings), Peter Chiarelli (Boston Bruins), Bob Gainey (Montreal Canadiens) and even Darryl Sutter, there can be no argument on the mid-season nod as the NHL’s GM of the year. It’s San Jose Sharks’ Doug Wilson. Acquisitions like Dan Boyle and Rob Blake have a had a massive impact on the league’s most dominant club, and Wilson’s savvy drafting over the years is paying off as late-round pick Joe Pavelski and first-rounder Devin Setoguchi have emerged as game-breakers. The decision to not give up on Patrick Marleau is also paying huge dividends. However, his best move of the year involved not only opting to fire Ron Wilson but to entrust his club to the young Todd McLellan, who is clearly the midseason choice as coach of the year.
Of all the aforementioned GMs who’ve done well to piece together contenders, Sutter is the one who will get the least attention, but he deserves plenty of credit for adding relatively cheap depth players Rene Bourque, Curtis Glencross, Todd Bertuzzi and Michael Cammalleri, all of whom have taken turns playing hero for the Flames this season.
“We came out on top and that is what we set out to do,” said Dan Boyle.
The hero on the night was Milan Michalek who has the primary assist on two goals and used a dramatic burst of speed to make the game 5-4 and change the momentum in San Jose’s direction for the remainder of the evening.
“It was a great game tonight,” said Michalek. “It was good to get the goal and the win. We want people to know that we are the best in the NHL.”
Watch the game highlights below…
from David Pollak of Working the Corners,
Officially, the Sharks still aren’t saying exactly what injury has sidelined Rob Blake after he blocked a shot against Calgary only to have the puck roll up the shaft of his stick and strike him in the chin.
“I won’t go into the test results, but it was better than we thought,” Coach Todd McLellan said.
But Blake did meet with reporters this morning and some of the damage is pretty obvious: a walnut-sized swelling on his lower left jaw and a wiring mechanism in place that limits its mobility.
Unofficially, another player identified Blake’s problem as a fracture.
Blake was able to talk — his jaw, he said, would be wired shut only a couple hours each day — but he wouldn’t spell out the precise damage, saying that they still wanted to do more tests.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
That is all that separates the Sharks and Red Wings before the clash of the titans Saturday night in San Jose.
“We’ve been looking at the standings all season long, knowing that they’ve been atop our conference and they’ve been the team to beat this year,” Detroit captain Nicklas Lidstrom told ESPN.com Friday. “It’s a game we’re looking forward to playing. It’s a bit of a measuring stick for our team to go up against the top team.”
That was Lidstrom’s understated way of saying: We want to kick some butt Saturday night.
via David Pollak of Working the Corners,
Defenseman Rob Blake will miss the next two games because of an injury suffered when a deflected puck struck him on the chin during Thursday night’s 3-2 loss to the Calgary Flames.
A team source did not disclose the specific injury, but did rule out a concussion after Blake underwent tests last night and again today. He will miss tonight’s (Saturday night’s) game against Detroit and Tuesday’s against Vancouver, but is expected to be ready to return after the NHL All-Star break. San Jose does not play again until Jan. 27 in Colorado.
San Jose Head Coach Todd McLellan will be the guest on today’s edition of NHL Hour with Commissioner Gary Bettman.
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from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
“There are two ways players can be better interviews,” Roenick said. “No. 1: speak your mind. If you feel passionately about something, then grow a pair, grow a thick skin, and say so. Don’t be afraid that you’re going to say the wrong thing. If it comes from your heart, if you know that you’re right, step up and let people hear what you have to say.
“And No. 2: for christ’s sake – for christ’s sake – show some (expletive) enthusiasm during interviews,” Roenick said. “I see too many interviews where young guys say the same thing night after night after night. It’s (expletive).
“You know what, guys? Don’t just give us the usual clichés. Don’t do interviews where your eyes are just staring off into space when they should be looking into the camera. Say something funny once in a while! And if somebody scores a sick goal, it’s OK to say ‘damn, my teammate scored a sick goal!’ ”
from Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle,
Threatened with the possibility of getting dumped on a last-place team if he didn’t comply, Boyle waived his no-trade clause to come to San Jose, but he felt betrayed because he had agreed to a $40 million contract extension to stay in Tampa earlier in the year. So pardon Boyle if he doesn’t have the fondest of feelings for his former club, which he will face tonight at HP Pavilion.
“It was pretty ugly, to be honest,” Boyle said. “I’d just signed there for six years, they told me a lot of things, and then a lot of stuff was done behind my back.”
Said teammate Jeremy Roenick: “The wrist thing and the way that team treated Dan left a bad taste in his mouth. The spat he had with the owners - I think he really wants to win the Cup and shove somebody’s nose in it.”
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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