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Category: Toronto-Maple-Leafs

Feels Like A Week In New Jersey

from Jonas Siegal of 640 Toronto,

NEWARK - What began as a Sunday night game against the Devils in Newark has evolved into a three-day stay for the Leafs in the Garden State.

A recap of the events so far…

Sunday, December 26th

10:45 a.m. Snow begins to drown Newark and the greater Eastern seaboard. Winds howl and a sea of white overcomes New Jersey….

Monday, December 27th

10:14 p.m. Possibility of flying out of Newark reopens with crews working to clear the runways of snow.

10:33 p.m. No such luck. Snow continues to blow onto the runway after being plowed.

10:49 p.m. Team boards bus and departs back to the hotel. Early morning flight scheduled.

read on for everything in-between….

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

Gordie Howe With A Christmas Wish

via Evan Weiner at NHL.com,

“Gordie? Every night playing with him you see him do different things,” (Bryan) Watson said. “I guess in Toronto where he beat (Maple Leafs defenseman) Kent Douglas twice and then going in, because he was kind of going bald, he always had a long piece of hair that came down to his eye and he had to move the hair out of his eye, and he stickhandled past Johnny Bower and tucked it into the top shelf with one hand.”

Scoring the goal, though, was not enough for Howe.

“He was trying to get it (the hair) out of his eyes,” Watson said. “We all laughed about it and then he wished Johnny Bower a Merry Christmas, to which Johnny chased him halfway to the blue line because Johnny was so mad at him.”

So Howe scored a goal, infuriated a goaltender and laughed skating back to the bench.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: gordie+howe, johnny+bower

Burke Wants To Make Player Personnel Changes

from Vinay Menon of the Toronto Star,

Burke is not sleeping these days, something I’ve heard from a few people. His team is not performing the way he expected. It’s been a season full of, well, equine excrement.

And so on behalf of Leaf fans everywhere, your humble emissary starts asking questions.

What has gone wrong? What are the objectives of management at this point? What can we expect in the new year? Can this team turn things around without an intervention? Or to paraphrase Chris Martin, why should we not panic?

“I think this group has established to my satisfaction that we’re not going to come out of this without some outside help,” concedes Burke. “We’re not looking at a coaching change. So we have to see if we can make a player personnel change.

“We’re at a critical point of the schedule where most of the games are against Eastern conference teams. We need some regulation wins if we’re going to get back in there. And we haven’t seen the progress that we’d like to see. So we’re looking to be active again as soon as we come out of the trade freeze.”

more

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

Video- You Have To Feel For The Toronto Fans

added 10:52am, from Bruce Dowbiggin of the Globe and Mail,

Toronto coach Ron Wilson had one of his exasperations Monday. Asked his thoughts on his Maple Leafs being booed at home, Wilson hissed he was not going to grace the question with a reply and then stomped off. Lip readers could make out Wilson asking a poor PR flack who the offending questioner was. While Wilson’s frustration is understandable, that doesn’t make it acceptable.

An intelligent man, Wilson does not suffer fools gladly. Nor does he suffer clever people. Or the venal, vacuous or vexatious. In fact, Wilson finds it hard to abide just about anyone with a tape recorder or note pad. Of course, his is not a happy lot these days. Odd bits of interesting material make a fine quilt, but they make a horrible hockey team. And Wilson has been saddled by his friend Brian Burke with a rag-bag collection of disparate abilities that shows little sign of succeeding in, say, the next millennium.

continued

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

The Monster Smash

from Mark Masters of the National Post,

Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Jonas Gustavsson was asked on Monday why, on occasion, he feels compelled to smash his stick on the net after allowing a goal.

“It’s always been part of my game,” said Gustavsson. “I think I do it less now than I did a couple years ago. Even my last year in Sweden I think I broke a couple sticks there, because I always want to compete, I always want to win and I don’t think it’s a frustrations [thing], I think it’s more that I compete.”

It was suggested to Gustavsson by a reporter that his net abuse may be setting a bad example for young players.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jonas+gustavsson

Frustration In Toronto

from Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun,

Let’s just say it wasn’t the kind of effort to encourage the purchase of any last-minute stocking stuffers with a blue Maple Leaf on it.

The Toronto fans, restless as ever, let the Leafs hear it throughout a 6-3 loss to the Atlanta Thrashers last night at the ACC that was as good as over three minutes into the first.

There was booing, but that has been a regular part of the show for a team that has now just won one more home game than it has lost.

And there was a loud chant of “Fire Wilson” aimed at Leafs coach Ron Wilson.

“That’s getting sickening,” Leafs forward Clarke MacArthur said. “(The coaches) aren’t the ones out there not skating in the first five minutes. It’s about the guys in the room.”

“It’s not very pleasant to hear that chant or to be booed in your own building,” Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf said. “It’s tough to hear and tough to take.”

read on

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

Burke Keeps Saying Yes

from Mary Rogan of GQ,

Still, Burke desperately wishes he didn’t have to do any of this. He doesn’t want to cry in front of teenage boys. He doesn’t want to stare at the overflowing basket of unopened sympathy cards sitting on his desk. He doesn’t want to tell Brendan’s story to strangers. All he really wants to do is something he’s the best at in the NHL: managing a professional hockey team and winning a fistful of games along the way.

Mostly, though, he doesn’t want to believe he’s the worst possible person for the job that Brendan started, but he knows it’s true. He’s built a career on not blowing sunshine up his own ass and pretending he’s good at something he’s not. He knows that everything he needs now, to carry this water for Brendan, he doesn’t have. Brendan had it, the poise and natural charm, the easy passage between two worlds. Brendan was perfect for the job. Brendan went first. Now he has to go second.

more, a long read but recommended….

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

The Time Bomb in Toronto

There is a time bomb ticking away in Toronto. And its inevitability is…well, inevitable.

The Leafs’ Cup drought is going to extend beyond 50 years. How could it not?

The Leafs exist in a world with Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin. Pavel Datsyuk and Jonathan Toews. Eric Staal and Ryan Getzlaf. Mike Richards and Steven Stamkos.

Datsyuk is the only player above not drafted in the first-round. But ask any GM in the NHL about which forward they would pick first to win the Stanley Cup today and Datsyuk would surely chalk up a few votes, regardless of how obvious a choice Crosby or Ovechkin may seem.

Tonight the Leafs head into GM Place in Vancouver to take on a team that has 10 former 1st Rounders in their line up. Ironically, two of those 1st Rounders happen to be Henrik and Daniel Sedin, a duo that Brian Burke went out of his way to secure in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft.

Continue Reading »

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

Giguere Concerned About His Groin Injury

from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,

When it comes right down to it, Giguere isn’t just concerned about the games he might miss in the coming days or weeks. His fears have more to do with the long-term impact the injury could have on his career.

While the Leafs are calling Giguere “day-to-day,” the veteran goalie suspects there might be more to this injury than just the so-called minor tweak that already has kept him out of the lineup on a couple of occasions this season.

“It’s more than a matter of resting it,” said Giguere, who has missed eight games in the past six weeks when the injury flared up. “We have to find out what it is. We have brought it back to 100% before, then I start playing and it gets tired and weak.

“When I started playing this time, there was a sharp pain.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jean-sebastien+giguere

“Neon Dion” Phaneuf

from Darren Dreger of TSN,

Former Flames coach Mike Keenan won’t get into specifics, but he confirms there were issues in Calgary’s dressing room involving Dion Phaneuf.

Veteran players referred to Phaneuf as “Neon Dion” and found him, at times, overly confident, if not cocky, on and off the ice.

There were arguments, and some wanted Keenan to tighten the reigns and discipline Phaneuf, but the former coach enjoyed Phaneuf’s sometimes, combative nature and verbal approach and was willing to live with his mistakes as he developed.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dion+phaneuf

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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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