Kukla's Korner Hockey
I better hurry up and post this or else...
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Care to make a post for the worst offside call all season? I know it doesn't affect the red wings but come on...you were very quick to put up tom Wilson high stick but aren't all over this? Put it up or just call your website a red wings fan site. League VERY lucky the caps pulled this off in OT.
Well we can't have that can we. Watch below....
Four minutes for high sticking.
from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,
No one around the NHL views the Presidents' Trophy as a predictor of playoff success. Since 2003, only two of 13 teams that finished No. 1 overall have gone on to win the Stanley Cup.
But winning that title has added value this season because the NHL’s top three teams, Washington, Pittsburgh and Columbus, are all in the Metropolitan Division. The runner-ups in the race will face each other in the opening playoff round.
“That’s going to be a test right off the bat, and it could leave a mark for the second round,” Washington Capitals coach Barry Trotz told USA TODAY Sports.
The Chicago Blackhawks, currently fourth in the Presidents' Trophy race with 100 points and nine games remaining, could easily step up and win it. But that wouldn’t change the reality that the losers of the battle for Metropolitan Division supremacy have a tougher playoff road.
from Paul Lukas of ESPN,
Custom-painted footwear, which has become a huge phenomenon in the NFL, is coming to hockey, courtesy of one of the NHL's biggest stars, Alex Ovechkin.
When the Washington Capitals warm up prior to Thursday night's game against the Columbus Blue Jackets, a game that the Caps are promoting as Russian Heritage Night, Ovechkin will be wearing custom-painted skates -- believed to be a first for an NHL player.
The two skate designs feature themes relating to Ovechkin's native and adopted countries -- Russia and the United States.
With Ovechkin poised to become the first NHL player to wear custom-painted skates, the question now is who'll be next, and whether the phenomenon will catch on as a league-wide trend like it has in the NFL. So many NFL players were wearing custom-designed cleats this past season, despite being fined for uniform violations, that the league designated a specific week in the 2016 schedule when players could wear the flashy footwear to highlight various charitable causes.
Could something like that eventually happen in the NHL? "It's probably too soon to talk about that," said Abrutyn, the agent. "What the NFL did was a really remarkable thing. If that were to occur with the NHL, with this being a jumping off point, that's probably a discussion for others to have, but it would be wonderful."
Barry Trotz joins Dave Amber to talk about resting players in the final stretch of the season, the tough Metropolitan division, and Alex Ovechkin.
from Isabelle Khurshudyan of the Washington Post,
California hasn’t been kind to the Washington Capitals this week, and it’s been particularly cruel to captain Alex Ovechkin. On Sunday, he launched four shots at goaltender Jonathan Bernier, but for a 10th straight game, Ovechkin didn’t score as the Capitals fell to the Ducks, 5-2.
That marks a career-long drought for Ovechkin, and the Capitals’ struggles — a season-worst four-game losing streak — have highlighted his own. It’s been 18 games since he’s scored an even-strength goal, and he has just two points in past nine games. His recent play has improved, but the score sheet has still eluded him.
“A little bit frustrating because the puck don’t go in,” Ovechkin said. “You just maybe wait something happen going to be, a miracle or something. You just have to work harder and fight through it.”
So how does Ovechkin, a veteran of 907 games and 1,022 points, manage this new feeling of being unable to score?
“You know, I’m not a rookie anymore,” Ovechkin said. “I don’t think about, ‘Do I have to score every game?’ Of course, I wanted to. If you look at the chances we don’t have, it’s all about me. The guys give me really good plays, and I just have to put it in. One goal and it’s turned around in a different way.”
Shattenkirk suspended for two games...
from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,
The player for whom the Capitals ceded a 2017 first-round pick, a conditional second-rounder, and former Boston College forward Zach Sanford played just 17:50 in his debut on Tuesday, two fewer minutes than he was averaging in St. Louis.
Kevin Shattenkirk’s workload in Washington is by design.
The Capitals made the most significant transaction in the trade market by landing the former Boston University defenseman to serve as a complementary player, not a go-to piece.
The package general manager Brian MacLellan sent out the door was hefty, especially for a rental the Capitals have little chance of re-signing. Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov, and ex-Bruin Brett Connolly are restricted at season’s end. Kuznetsov is due to double his current $3 million average annual value. The 25-year-old Orlov will look to Torey Krug’s $5.25 million annual payday as a comparable. Connolly could hit 20 goals, which would give him valuable ammunition in arbitration.
All those things add up to Shattenkirk being a short-term Washington visitor instead of one with Supreme Court-like tenure. Even so, the thing that makes Shattenkirk a shrewd investment for the Capitals is how they project to use the 28-year-old: similarly to how the Blues deployed the offensive-minded blue liner.
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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.
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