Kukla's Korner Hockey
Defenseman puts NHL career on hold for Olympic opportunity
from Travis Rockhold at The Lantern (Ohio State student newspaper),
Winning championships for a professional franchise in sports is often an athlete’s ultimate goal, but a select few get a chance to achieve even more.
Come February, former Buckeye Ryan Kesler will attempt to win a gold medal with the U.S. men’s ice hockey team.
from Matthew Sekeres of the Globe and Mail,
The culprit is still loose, ready to strike again on Monday when the Nashville Predators face the Vancouver Canucks at General Motors Place.
The Canucks and arena staff are still searching for the fan who brought a laser pointer to the game Saturday against the Calgary Flames. A green beam of light was occasionally flashed into the helmet of Flames goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff, and it had Calgary head coach Brent Sutter fuming after his team’s 3-2 shootout victory.
“If they do it [again], fans will have to wait because I’ll pull my team off [the ice],” Predators head coach Barry Trotz said when asked if he was concerned about a repeat or copycat incident. “Everybody thinks they’ll get their 15 minutes of fame. It’s brutal.”
Brad Luckowich of the Canucks on the Flames Rene Bourque.
from the CP at TSN,
Calgary coach Brent Sutter was crying foul at Canucks fans after the Flames beat Vancouver in a shootout Saturday night.
Sutter said someone in the sellout crowd of 18,810 at General Motors Place was directing a laser pointer at goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff throughout the game in an effort to distract him.
“It was going on all night,” said Sutter. “It was brought to the attention of the refs and security, and it’s hard to believe that can go on for 60 minutes in a hockey game and it’s not located and not found.”
If you can’t take the
(sight, duh) of blood, don’t watch.
from Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province,
Had Kevin Bieksa been wearing a protective Kevlar sock, the Vancouver Canucks defenceman may not have been sidelined three months after two tendons in his left ankle were severed Dec. 29 at Phoenix from a skate cut. Products are being marketed that feature a Kevlar lining knit inside a sports-mesh polyester outer shell to make socks cut-resistant, but something seems lost in translation as to how it can be adopted as regular equipment sooner rather than later.
Reebok is the official equipment supplier to the NHL and players must wear its items as part of the agreement. But what’s to stop a player from donning a Kevlar sock under mandated equipment — and not exposing a competing company’s logo — until the league and the Players’ Association make Kevlar socks mandatory?
from Tom Reed of Puck-rakers,
For a franchise trying to convince its fan base that the answers are in the locker room and behind the bench, it was a performance as ill-timed as a pimple on the morning of prom.
The Blue Jackets were drilled by the Canucks, 7-3, last night in a game as unsightly as almost any this season. The Jackets built an unexpected 2-0 lead and caved at the first sign of adversity.
from Jason Brough of Orland Kurtenblog,
The Vancouver Canucks passed the halfway point of the schedule with Saturday’s 3-1 victory in Dallas. With 40 games to go, this week’s list features our keys to the rest of the regular season.
In October, Luongo’s save percentage was .902 and the Canucks went 7-7-0.
In December, Luongo’s save percentage was .932 and the Canucks went 10-4-1.
This is called a correlation.
Still, there remains a sense that Luongo hasn’t been the winning factor enough. Vancouver is just 12-13-1 in games decided by two goals or fewer and 13-3-0 in those decided by three or more. Naturally, goaltending comes under closer scrutiny in tight affairs.
The Vancouver Canucks received some awful news on the injury front Monday when they learned that they would be without defenceman Kevin Bieksa for up to three months with severed tendons in his left ankle.
from Ian MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun,
Even just going where he is told, Mathieu Schneider is creating another problem for the Vancouver Canucks. He also stands to collect a $250,000 US bonus payment on Jan. 15.
The 40-year-old defenceman, who cleared waivers Wednesday after leaving the National Hockey League team, reported Sunday to the Canucks’ minor-league affiliate in Winnipeg. The re-assignment of Schneider, whom the Canucks were unable to trade or place with another organization, puts the Manitoba Moose one veteran over the American Hockey League limit of five and coach Scott Arniel will have to sit out a player to make room for the defenceman.
But by reporting, Schneider continues to collect his NHL base salary of $1.55 million, which includes a $1 million signing bonus divided over four payments.
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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