Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
"The games are so close," Flyers general manager Ron Hextall told ESPN.com Wednesday. "I think we all weigh on our top players a lot, and at points I think too much, so I think giving your so-called fourth line a couple of extra minutes, or maybe an extra 3-4 minutes, is becoming bigger and bigger. The guys there have to be good hockey players. I'm not saying our guy [Rosehill] that we demoted wasn't a good hockey player, but we were just looking for a few more minutes from those fourth-line guys." ...
"Colton (Orr) worked hard and brought other elements besides fighting," Leafs GM Dave Nonis told ESPN.com Wednesday. "He did a good job for us, and did play in the playoffs when fighting wasn't part of the game. But the actual minutes that we’re trying to pull out of our fourth line and the combinations that we want available for the coaches has lent itself to a different style of player right now."
more including Ken Holland on the topic...
from Dave Naylor of TSN,
As Michael Farber so appropriately pointed out on this past Sunday's edition of TSN The Reporters with Dave Hodge, the Leafs have a parent company whose president and CEO is on his way out, which means that within a matter of days Leafs president Brendan Shanahan will be working for someone who didn't hire him.
Which kind fits the theme of this organization since Shanahan didn't hire general manager Dave Nonis, who didn't hire head coach Randy Carlyle, who didn't hire either of his assistant coaches, Steve Spott or Peter Horachek.
The front office also includes two apparent Shanahan hires in two former junior hockey general mangers in Kyle Dubas and Mark Hunter, the latter of which is already been viewed by outsiders as the GM in waiting.
So perhaps the question should be this: with an organization that's been constructed to look like some mad scientist's flying machine experiment, should it be any wonder the Leafs don't play like a well-oiled machine on the ice?
from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,
National Hockey League security personnel were at the MasterCard Centre on Monday as part of their team-by-team talk on player safety away from the rink.
Years ago, a big part of the lecture had to do with avoiding narcotics, seedy characters and the like, but there has been a shift in recent years to proper protocol on social media, particularly what information a player lets out and avoiding the release of any potentially damaging images.
"When I first came in there was no social media or anything like that," 37-year-old defenceman Stephane Robidas said. "That was a big thing today. When I broke in, there were no cellphones. I got my first one during my first year, but there was no camera on it, no Facebook, no e-mail on your phone. But this is a new era."
The players usually are briefed in these meetings on what to do in any difficult off-ice situation. Where once the league had few brushes with the law compared to other pro sports, that's no longer the case.
read on for some notes on the Leafs...
from Jonas Siegel of TSN,
The microscope may indeed focus on Randy Carlyle as Toronto stumbles out of the gate with many of the same troubles as last season, but Maple Leafs president Brendan Shanahan should also be in the process of taking a long, hard look at what makes up the core of his roster.
Now is the time for him to not only evaluate Carlyle and his fit as the club's head coach, but those cornerstone pieces and whether they'll be good enough one day not just to sneak into the playoffs or win a round, but to win four and an eventual Stanley Cup.
Hired in April, Shanahan took the summer months to refurbish parts of the coaching staff and parts of the front office while tinkering with a slew of short-term roster buys in free agency. But he didn't touch the core at the end of another late season collapse.
No, he left those front-end pieces like Kessel, like Dion Phaneuf and Joffrey Lupul, like David Clarkson and Tyler Bozak, he left those pieces in place, presumably to evaluate them firsthand, get a real sense for the players and personalities from the inside.
from Jonas Siegel of TSN,
The silver doors to the Maple Leafs dressing room remained closed for more than 15 minutes after this particularly embarrassing loss.
Inside, head coach, Randy Carlyle, blasted his team for their effort in a Saturday night home game and players met amongst themselves afterwards to discuss all that went wrong in a beating by a familiar foe.
“I don’t think he was happy,” said Nazem Kadri of Carlyle after a 4-1 defeat to the Bruins. “He shouldn’t be. Neither are we. It’s not like we’re sitting in there laughing and joking around. No one likes to get beat like that, especially in our own building.”
“We all know that wasn’t near good enough and [Carlyle] affirmed that,” Cody Franson added. “He didn’t tell us anything that we didn’t know. He has every right to be mad. That’s on us in here, not on him.”
It was the third time in five games at the ACC that the Leafs have been beaten in such devastating fashion – also losing handily to the Penguins and Red Wings in the very early weeks this season.
A little longer version from HNIC is below...
from Michael Grange of Sportsnet,
The Leafs will host the Boston Bruins on Hockey Night in Canada, the first gathering of the nation’s hockey congregation after a week in which Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent was killed in a targeted hit-and-run attack in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu. Quebec and Cpl. Nathan Cirillo was murdered on the steps of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in the shadow of Parliament. Both deaths are considered acts of terrorism with Canadian soldiers as targets.
The three Canadian NHL teams playing in the early games – Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa — are planning a joint tribute pre-game to Cirillo, the 24-year-old reservist from Hamilton who was part of the Argyle and Sutherland Highlanders of Hamilton and Vincent, an airmen.
It will no doubt be moving. It represents a rare opportunity for millions of Canadians to reflect on a pair of excruciating events, in particular Wednesday’s shooting which resonates both for its powerful symbolism and the smallest details – in Cirillo’s case a six-year-old boy who will be growing up without his big, rugged Dad; a picture of two very sad pups now without a loving owner; while Vincent leaves a sister without her twin.
from Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun,
“Obviously it was a tragic day and being that close to it made it seem even that much more real,” Leafs forward Joffrey Lupul said following his team’s practice Thursday at the MasterCard Centre. “It’s certainly not something you expect or even are aware of as a Canadian that there is a possibility something like that could happen here.
“People like that at Parliament Hill and the prime minister being there and seeing it all unfold was surreal - especially seeing it all unfold from your room like that.”
The Leafs team hotel was essentially across the road from the National War Memorial where soldier Nathan Cirillo was shot to death late Thursday morning. Players on higher floors saw the drama unfold and were captivated by the tragic events.
NEW YORK/TORONTO (October 22, 2014) – The game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators, scheduled for tonight at Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, has been postponed, the National Hockey League announced today.
The date and time of the rescheduled game will be announced at a later date.
The National Hockey League wishes to express its sympathy and prayers to all affected by the tragic events in Ottawa.
Statement from the Toronton Maple Leafs
“The Toronto Maple Leaf Hockey Club extends its deepest condolences to the family and friends of all affected by the tragic events in downtown Ottawa today. The Club supports the National Hockey League’s decision to postpone tonight’s scheduled meeting with the Ottawa Senators.
We have been witness today to some terrible events but are thankful to those brave men and women for their tireless service in protecting everyone’s safety.”
added 1:58pm, Ottawa Senators statement is below...
via Shawn McKenzie tweets,
Carlyle on Kadri "Is it confidence? Is it overconfidence? Is it cockiness? Is it all of those things?" Thats what you ask yourself"
Carlyle cont'd "I look at it as a strength. When you are able to not just talk it, you have to live it."
Carlyle "I'm sure he'll (Kadri) get some shifts tonight against John Tavares, so we will let the tale of the tape prove that"
If you missed what Kadri said earlier, you can read it here.
added 3:32pm, Watch Kadri talking after practice, 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.
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