Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Category: Toronto-Maple-Leafs

Live. Love. Leafs.

Help me welcome Shiv to the stable of KK bloggers.  A well educated youngster in my mind, but some of you may have to ‘rope him in’ from time to time but he does know his Leafs.

Shiv basically forced himself on me, submitting blog after blog in the KK Members’ Section and I finally caved and felt he deserved his own blog.  Good luck Shiv! -Paul

Go Leafs Go.

I can’t think of a better way to introduce myself to KK followers than with that phrase. It is what I am: The common Leaf fan.

My name is Shiv. I am 23 years old and have never been old enough to legally watch a Leaf playoff game in a bar. Yet despite this tragedy, I still bleed blue and white; I still plan the parade route every year.

I realize this attitude is the reason Leaf Nation gets such a bad rap from the hockey universe. But this attitude is exactly what I hope to bring to KK.


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Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Would Praying Help The Leafs?

from Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star,

Legendary goaltender Johnny Bower recalls that it was as ugly as anything Toronto fans are suffering through now with the Leafs’ run of losses at eight.

“I was fighting the puck. I depended on my defencemen so much and they had their problems too. And the forwards couldn’t score worth a hoot, just like they way they’re going right now,” Bower said Monday.

But those Leafs eventually won again. In a game against Boston in which Bower was supposed to back up, he was conscripted to start when Bruce Gamble couldn’t go because of a sore shoulder. Bower played the game of his life, stopping 30 of 31 Bruins shots en route to a drought-snapping 2-1 victory.

“I went to church, lit candles and we won,” said Bower with a chuckle. “Maybe our (current) players should do that. Get ’em to go to church and say a little prayer.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Kadri Call Up Show Leafs Are Desperate

from Bruce Arthur of the National Post,

“You’d rather not bring in a young player, two young players, on Hockey Night [in Canada],” Leafs general manager Brian Burke told the media after Friday’s practice. “It’s a carnival atmosphere and everyone knows it’s a special thing; you’d rather do it on a weeknight, frankly, but again it’s not an ideal world, this is what players have to deal with, and young players have to learn that.”

Sink or swim, kid. There as always going to be a spotlight on Kadri when he was called up, but to bring him up now is like adding a giant magnifying glass to the equation. The team is in danger of falling through the ice, sure, but they won’t be this bad all season, since that’s almost impossible to do.

But there just isn’t enough offensive talent on this team, bereft as it is up the middle. Bringing up Kadri now, as the forest burns, means there isn’t room for any other storyline. Maybe Kadri will be like P.K. Subban, who was thrown into the cauldron by the Montreal Canadiens in last year’s playoffs. Due to injuries, though, the Canadiens had no real choice. The Leafs did. Or at least, could have.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nazem+kadri

Evening Line

“All I really want to do is win the Stanley Cup.  Then I would be released. If we won, that’s the last game I’ll ever coach. Honest to God I would have no hesitation. That’s all I’ve ever wanted to do, to have my name on the Cup with my dad and my uncle. That’s honest to God how I feel.

“This is the team I grew up with. Punch Imlach was the last coach who won. That would be just the coolest thing in the world. I’m not about coming back the next year and having everybody pat me on the back, knowing I could be the mayor of Toronto. That doesn’t interest me at all. I could just quietly go away and have all of this satisfaction, knowing that this was something I dreamed about all of my life, this was something I managed to do, and now I can actually breathe.”

-Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Ron Wilson.  Read more from Stephen Brunt of the Globe and Mail, including a man walking by Wilson while he was on the phone telling him this…

“You’re the worst [expletive] coach I’ve ever seen. You’re a [expletive] idiot.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ron+wilson

The Leafs Are Still Horrible

from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

What happened in Anaheim doesn’t matter much anymore.

What happened in Vancouver or Hartford, with the nifty manipulation that led to the drafting of the Sedin twins or Chris Pronger, is ancient hockey history.

The old records, frankly, have gotten old and stale.

Just weeks away from two years on the job of running the Maple Leafs, this much is now obvious: Brian Burke has been a grand disappointment as president and general manager of the Leafs. For all his sound and all his fury — and if you get to know him you can’t help but like him — the Maple Leafs are again a horrible hockey team.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Leafs Need A Win

from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,

Before this two-game Sunshine State swing began, Ron Wilson half-joked “I’ll take a 6-5 win or 1-0, as long as we find a way to win.”

There was no humour in the coach Wednesday afternoon as the Maple Leafs faced the possibility of being swept and having their losing streak stretched to seven games. That could lead to changes even before the Leafs play their next home game on Saturday against Vancouver, either a trade or a call-up from the Marlies, who are undefeated (3-0-2) midway through a long road trip.

“We’re looking at lots of things, including that the Marlies are hot,” general manager Brian Burke said in an e-mail to the Toronto Sun.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Lightning/Maple Leafs, 11/09/10

From a Tampa Bay Lightning perspective, all was quite good at the St. Pete Times Forum last night and, while a 4-0 shutout for the home squad makes the latter parts of Good/Bad/Ugly slightly more difficult for yours truly, we’ll take it. (And it sure beats most of the G, B & Us put together in years past where the Good was often a stretch and the Bad and Ugly could have gone on for days.)

Now then…

The Good

What started as an outright joke, as in, “Steven Stamkos is currently on pace for 98 goals this season,” is becoming less funny and more scary good serious with every tally for the 20-year-old Lightning superstar. With two more last night, Stamkos’ early season line of 13 goals and 11 assists for 24 points is better than Crosby, better than Ovechkin, better than the entire league and setting a breakneck pace that, as everyone’s new favorite hashtag, #stamkosmath, is documenting by-the-second (well, sort of) on Twitter, projects roughly to a 76-goal, 141-point total over 82 games. (In the interest of showing marksman-like precision, #stamkosmath actually dictates that 91’s projected numbers are 76.142857 goals and 140.57143 points.)

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Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dan+ellis, derek+boogaard, dominic+moore, eric+staal, mike+smith, nate+thompson, simon+gagne, simon+gagne, steve+downie, steven+stamkos

Leafs Didn’t Have A Chance Tonight

from James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail,

“We didn’t compete,” Giguere said. “You knew they were going to be ready, they got beat pretty bad the last game on the road ... You’ve got to be aware of these things. I don’t know. I’m a bit lost. I don’t know what to say. We’re just going to have to regroup.”

Giguere said the team’s slow start was what really killed them, as after failing to capitalize on an early 5-on-3, Toronto seemed to back off and allow the Lightning to take control of the game with three quick goals.

“I think it was obvious we weren’t ready to start ... As a group, we just weren’t ready to compete and do what we needed to do to win the game,” he said. “I mean, we played better in the second and third but that’s not enough. In the situation we’re in, you need to see some desperation out of the guys, some competitiveness and we’re not seeing that.

“I don’t understand why it’s not happening. There’s nothing given in this league. It’s a tough league to win in, especially on the road. You need to show up ready. Things might not go your way, that’s understandable, and you’re not going to win them all but after you lose a few in a row like that, you need to start showing something.

“Tonight we didn’t even have a chance.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Morning Line

“Talking about a coaching challenge in response to one goal is like killing a house fly with a bazooka.

“All of a sudden, we’re talking about a rule change because of one goal. Our group gets paid to not panic on rule changes and not overreact. This, to me, seems like an overreaction of the highest magnitude.”

-Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke.  More from Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brian+burke

The Bolts Beat, 11/09/10: Tampa’s Western Swing, Stamkos Contract, Injury Woes and JJ Said WHAT?

In the latest episode of The Bolts Beat, Mark and Mike pile up on Jon for coming clean about not being able to stay up for late games recently but, later, Jon returns fire by taking the show to a very dark, dark place. Aside from Tampa’s recent west coast road trip, the boys discuss the scuttlebutt surrounding Steven Stamkos’ second contract, the Lightning’s recent rash of injuries (including that of Simon Gagne, who remains out) and the weekly end-show segments are, as usual, full of vim and vigor. “Missing the Mark” targets NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, Mike’s “Missed Call of the Week” goes after an officiating staff for their entire body of work in one particular game and Jon’s “What the Hell Was That?” has the Hall of Fame induction committee in its crosshairs.

Enjoy. This one’s a doozy…


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Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, d, Los Angeles Kings, San Jose Sharks, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dan+ellis, dominic+moore, simon+gagne, simon+gagne, steve+downie, steven+stamkos

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com


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