Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Tarik El-Bashir of the Washington Post,
The biggest question facing the Washington Capitals as they prepare to open the Eastern Conference first round against the New York Rangers is whether José Theodore can catch fire after an uneven regular season in which he temporarily lost his starting job.
Playing behind the league’s third-best offense but an inexperienced team that’s prone to exposing its goaltender to prime scoring chances, Theodore won 32 games this season, second only to his 33 victories with the Montreal Canadiens in 2003-04. In every other category by which goaltenders are judged, however, the 32-year-old’s statistics were unimpressive despite a second-half rebound.
from Ted Leonsis of Ted’s Take,
I have already started to receive angst-filled emails from certain Caps fans pining away for the good old days and concerned about our D; our goaltending; our playoff readiness; our toughness; our overabundance of skill; our lack of heart; our size; our skill level; our leadership; our grittiness; our speed; our GM; our coach; our ownership; our lack of secondary scoring; lack of tickets available; the price of tickets; the food; the traffic; the Metro schedule; the ushers; and the ice. One fan even said - and I quote - “I am 95 percent sure you will lose this series because…”
Ninety-five percent? Why not 96 percent? What was the algorithm that created that prediction?
Rather than complain, let it all hang out now. Send them all my way. Do it today and all day tomorrow….
from Red Fisher of the Montreal Gazette,
While the players will insist during the next few days it doesn’t matter which team they’ll be facing, I suspect they would prefer taking on Washington in the first round, and to do that they must finish as the No. 7 seed.
Why the Capitals? Why a team that has the NHL’s best player in Alex Ovechkin? A team that almost surely has this season’s Norris Trophy winner in Mike Green?
It starts with Jose Theodore.
from Welcome to the Show,
Here is something you may have not seen involving Caps coach Bruce Boudreau. In addition to being an expert hockey tactician, Boudreau is also well-skilled in the art of doodling. Boudreau is one of the celebrities to partake in USA National Doodle Day, which everyone knows falls on May 7 this year. Boudreau’s hockey doodle is a one-of-a-kind sketch featuring the Capitals rink and the Stanley Cup with the words “The Dream” written beneath the most prestigious trophy in sports. He listed the numbers of ten current Capitals on the ice, but listed Mike Green’s No. 52 twice, presumably because Green covers more ice than any other player in the NHL. Boudreau also encourages fans to Rock the Red and calls Washington The “New” Hockeytown in his doodle.
... On Frozen Blog breaks down Puck Daddy.
Just in time for the Stanley Cup™ Playoffs, today Energizer Canada Inc. announced a new sponsorship arrangement with NHL™ superstar Alex Ovechkin. While the full program is gearing up for a Fall 2009 launch, it centers around Energizer’s Ultimate Lithium product *“The World’s Longest Lasting ‘AA’ Battery in High-Tech Devices”
“With our Ultimate Lithium product offering 8X the power of our premium alkaline, it only made sense to partner with The Great #8 as he is the World’s Best Player (in my view)” said Kent Hatton, Brand Group Director of Energizer Canada Inc. “Alex is known throughout the league to play with incredible energy, determination and intensity, a perfect fit with the Energizer Bunny and our Keep Going® brand promise”.
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals are encouraging fans to participate in one of hockey’s most visible traditions—the playoff beard. Fans may elect to grow a beard themselves or make a financial donation in support of a Capitals player or a fan who has elected to grow a playoff beard. The Capitals’ Beard-a-thon is an opportunity for fans to grow their own beard and raise money for charity, as all proceeds will benefit Washington Capitals Charities.
Participants in the Capitals’ Beard-a-thon can invite family members, friends and business associates to pledge money for their playoff beard. Some of the participants in the Beard-a-thon are Comcast SportsNet anchors Brent Harris, Chris Hernandez, Michael Jenkins, Chris Miller and Russ Thaler. WJFK 106.7 FM’s John “Cakes” Auville from the Junkies, Chad Dukes from the Big O and Dukes Show and nationally syndicated personality Mike O’Meara from the Mike O’Meara Show will also participate in the Beard-a-thon. Money will be donated to Washington Capitals Charities for everyday that a fan maintains his beard. Fans who do not wish to or are unable to grow a playoff beard can participate by pledging a donation to your favorite Caps player. For more information or to enroll in the Capitals’ Beard-a-thon, log onto beardathon.com/capitals.
from Dan Steinberg of D.C. Sports Bog,
I was getting ready to go into the Wizards locker room when I was told Alex Ovechkin would meet LeBron James in the other direction, and so I switched directions too. Because the Wizards will win more games and have more feel-good moments, but it’s a pretty rare thing to watch two of the greatest athletes in the world meet for the first time.
added 12:21pm, Watch video of the meeting below…
Mike Green talks with the crew from the NHL Network after scoring his 30th goal last night.
added 2:37, J.P. of Japers’ Rink is disputing a 30 goal scorer from the past…
per “The Big Book of Hockey Trivia,” Phil Housley only scored 24 goals as a defenseman in 1983-84. Mike Green is the magnificent seventh NHL defenseman to score thirty goals in a season, not the eighth.
from Dan Steinberg of the Washington Post,
“Right now, the biggest excitement I get is watching these games,” he told me. “Believe this, if you were to sneak somewhere and watch me out here when the game’s going on, you would really think I was watching hockey for years.”
Before I left, I asked Lovell whether he was looking forward to the playoffs.
“I’ll be here rooting on the Caps all the way to the Stanley Cup,” he said. “There’s no doubt in my mind. I’m sure of that.”
read on to find out what makes Mr. Lovell a different kind of fan…
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 firstname.lastname@example.org