Kukla's Korner Hockey
“Oh, I’m sure there’s a lot of people with crayons right now writing down a parade route. But it’s one game, and it’s part of the process. Tonight, we were fortunate enough to not make many mistakes and our attention to detail was pretty good. I’m really proud of the group, they paid attention. We’ve really only had eight practices and to have the game figured out somewhat tells you a lot about our players.
“They bought in, and we’ve had a lot of fun. They’re having a great time in there right now and they should—they beat the Stanley Cup champions. It’s a tremendous accomplishment and it can only do good things for our confidence, I hope.”
-Leafs coach Ron Wilson after defeating Detroit last night. More on the Leafs/Wings from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN.
from Navin Vaswani at DigitalJournal,
It’s been one hell of a ride, Tomas. I’ve enjoyed every second of it with you. As we embark on another chapter in our lives together down in Detroit tonight, all I want us to do is live for the moment, and live for today. I know everyone in the world thinks the Leafs are going to be terrible this season. Let’s prove them wrong. Screw John Tavares. Screw Victor Hedman. I mean, who knows how long we have left together? Who knows how long we have left on this earth? I won’t be cheering for the Leafs to lose. I don’t have it in me. I’ll be cheering for you, Tomas, and for the rest of the boys. Live for today. Have faith. Let’s shock the world.
from Howard Berger of Fan590,
At 4:15 a.m., an ear-splitting alarm echoed through the halls of the MGM Grand Hotel, followed by an announcement to proceed to the nearest stairwell. Moments later, a second announcement informed guests that an “early detection” warning had gone off, and most of the 300 or so patrons of the hotel spilled on to the front plaza along Third Steeet here in downtown Detroit. As is thankfully typical in these circumstances, the alarm proved to be a non-emergency, and patrons were given the all-clear to return to their rooms around 4:35 a.m.
from Damien Cox of the Spin at the Toronto Star,
The concepts, objectives and goals around the Maple Leafs are like shifting sands, more now than ever before. Clearly, much has changed in a calendar year, and while Ron Wilson was clearly being honest and straightforward through his “wins and losses don’t matter” mantra for the season, that’s not going to be easy for proud, veteran players to ingest before an 82-game season even starts.
It’s a little different than “Win One for the Gipper” or “You Gotta Believe.”
From Mike Ulmer at Maple Leafs.com
The Leafs Nation Mobile Fanzone will put fans first.
“I think the dressing room is an inner sanctum people don’t get access to,” Hosford said. “ It’s something where people can feel what it’s like to actually be there. That’s why we wanted to replicate it and take it out into the community for all the people who are such a big part the Toronto Maple Leafs.”
The Leafs Nation Mobile Fanzone will be driven to locations all over the GTA over the next six days. Some of those events will include Leaf players and alumni handing out Leafs gear. Everyone gets free swag as well as a walking tour of the rolling room.
from the Globe and Mail,
Toronto Maple Leafs forward Ryan Hollweg has been suspended for the first two games of the regular season.
The suspension is tied to a hit from behind during a game last week and for two similar incidents last season when he was a member of the New York Rangers.
added 5:24pm, Official NHL release on the suspension below…
Numerous sources reporting Toronto has waived Mark Bell.
Anyone want him for $2.5M?
added 1:10PM, via TSN,
The Toronto Maple Leafs placed forward Mark Bell on waivers on Monday, while the Calgary Flames have put defencemen Anders Eriksson and Rhett Warrener and forward Jamie Lundmark on the waiver wire.
Ole-Kristian Tollefsen of the Blue Jackets lines-up Toronto’s Jason Blake…
from Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star,
(Jason) Blake was not a stranger to new coach Ron Wilson. Wilson had coached him on U.S. national teams and knew the level at which he should be performing. Wilson also watched him on TV last season and it was a different Blake than the one he remembered. He spoke to the winger about it during camp.
“The Jason Blake that I knew on national teams and when he was scoring went hard to the net and competed,” said Wilson.
“Last year, I thought he kind of circled the wagons all the time and took a lot of perimeter shots that were a waste of time. They looked good on paper. He’d come of the game with five shots, but they’re all 50-foot wrist shots. He’s going hard to the net and he’s starting to score now.”
from Steve Buffery of the Toronto Sun,
So while Hollweg brings an edge and willingness to fight, nobody on the Leafs squad at this moment will strike a sense of fear or dread into the opposition.
“I think it could be a concern,” Wilson acknowledged yesterday, when asked about his club’s lack of toughness. “But, again, we haven’t had our full lineup all together.”
Wilson insisted that an NHL team does not need the big heavyweight any more, as the game has changed and a mid-sized scrapper, who can also skate and hit, like Hollweg, can be just as valuable.
“A lot of times, that’s just sideshow—heavyweight fights heavyweight. What’s that got to do with the game?” the veteran coach said. “If you just got a guy who plays two or three minutes and can’t skate or do anything, I don’t know if that serves a purpose. (But) we’ll see how our team is this year and if we have to address that, we will.”
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.
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