Kukla's Korner Hockey
A behind the scenes look at the broadcast control room at Rogers Arena in Vancouver.
from Stan Fischler of the Fischler Report,
* Have you noticed how the Vancouver media jackals have jumped all over John Tortorella? Not nice.
* Torts is not the problem; his general manager hasn’t exactly given his coach an Anaheim-type team.
* Plus, two back-up goalies sure doesn’t inspire confidence in the other lads, does it?
* It’s time for Marty St.Louis to start busting out; not to mention Rick Nash.
* He won’t win the Norris Trophy but Ryan McDonagh sure deserves more attention than he gets.
* Rather deservedly, Jaromir Jagr is commanding a lot of headlines in New Jersey but there’s another Czech who quietly is having a career year with the Devils — Marek Zidlicky.
continue for more short bursts...
from Harvey Fialkov os the Sun Sentinel,
“I think it was kind of obvious it was going to happen when [coach Kevin Dineen] was let go. I was happy to be moved and happy for the new opportunity,'' Matthias said. "It’s a different atmosphere [in Vancouver], a different culture. You play hard and you play. In Florida, too many guys were given things and it’s not the right way. Here, it’s you earn your ice time.’’...
“I think it was obvious when guys were out, and how well I played,’’ Matthias said. “And when they came back, nothing really changed, it seemed like it never happened. I was upset for awhile here and wanted a fair shake and now I’m in a really good situation.’’
Matthias said he was, “ecstatic,’’ to be traded and hopes to score a couple of goals Sunday.
“That’s what I’m absolutely planning on doing,’’ Matthias smiled.
I hope Luongo moving back to Florida doesn’t mean he’ll just be riding off into the sunset. I hope the guy everybody got to know over the last few years continues to make us marvel at his endless work habits and continues to make us laugh via twitter.
The NHL is a far more interesting place with Roberto Luongo in it. Let’s just hope we don’t lose sight of him all the way down in Sunrise.
-Dan Murphy of Sportsnet on Roberto Luongo. Read more on Luongo from Murphy.
from David Ebner of the Globe and Mail,
In the incredible decline of the Vancouver Canucks, the fate of Ryan Kesler’s right knee is suddenly central to the team’s future.
Kesler was injured Wednesday night in Winnipeg and is returning to Vancouver to have his right knee assessed with an MRI.
The Canucks – who have in record time gone from a contender in a slump to a franchise rebuilding – had tried to trade the 29-year-old star forward last week at the NHL trade decline but turned down deals. A Kesler trade was imagined as the pivot point to overhaul the team in one swoop but offers fell short of the Canucks’s desire for a player, prospect and draft pick. Kesler, agitated at Vancouver’s poor prospects, wanted to move to a potential winner – and after last week’s no deal attention turned towards a transaction at the draft.
Now, however, regardless of the severity of the Kesler’s knee injury, the Canucks have been dealt a big blow. If teams weren’t willing to pile the table high with offerings ahead of this year’s playoffs for healthy Kesler, it seems available deals won’t be better in late June at the draft, two months before Kesler’s 30th birthday on Aug. 31.
At the GM Meetings this morning...
from Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province,
Tortorella is in the crosshairs because of a 2-11-1 slide, his tunnel tirade to get to Bob Hartley that didn’t help morale and a preoccupation with push and pace. It has led to a rash of injuries and indifferent play and the inability to maintain consistency or have anything left in the tank.
Ryan Kesler, Daniel and Henrik Sedin rank first, seventh and ninth respectively in average ice time among all NHL forwards. Henrik is playing through bruised ribs, Daniel has a season-threatening hamstring ailment, and Kesler’s commando style invites injury. On top of that, the Canucks are 3-20-1 when trailing after two periods, have the 25th-ranked power play and 28th-ranked offence.
Those are fireable offences.
It’s probably why Tortorella held a heartfelt and lengthy post-practice talk with his players in the far corner of Rogers Arena. No yelling and screaming in trying to save the season — and his job.
“It’s about not giving in and the responsibility of being a professional,” Tortorella said of the exchange.
added 10:57am, from Cam Cole of the Vancouver Sun,
from Ian MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun,
Anyone who couldn't believe what they saw Monday from the Vancouver Canucks hasn't been paying attention the last two months.
You may have been horrified, disgusted, disillusioned, sad or angry, but shocked? No, not with these Canucks. Not with the way their disintegration has been accelerating in recent weeks, how a team that was one of the best in the National Hockey League only a couple of years ago has completely dissolved before our eyes – and the eyes of coach John Tortorella and general manager Mike Gillis – this winter.
The collapse on home ice against the New York Islanders is merely the grotesque next step of a team that long ago lost its way and only barrels deeper and more hopelessly into the abyss week by week.
On the day Gillis sent a letter to season-ticket holders re-stating the organization's goal to win the Stanley Cup, the chalice hasn't looked as far away in 15 years as it did Monday night when the Canucks were outscored 7-1 in the third period by a lousy Islander team long ridiculed for its ineptitude.
Watch the game highlights below and also John Tortorella post-game...
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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