Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Mark Zwolinski at the Toronto Star,
Alex Ovechkin has become many things in Washington: a celebrity, a millionaire and a hero. Now he’s a mentor and role model.
The 22-year-old has opened up his home to newcomer Nicklas Backstrom, and is helping the Swedish rookie adapt to hockey and life in the U.S. capital.
“I remember being a rookie and Dainius Zubrus, he helped me, so I wanted to give back the way Dainius did for me,” said Ovechkin, whose two goals lifted the Capitals to a 7-1 win over the Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.
“OV (Ovechkin) has been very good for Nicklas, he takes him all over and kind of shows him around,” Capitals coach Glen Hanlon said. “Dainius was great with him, and now it hasn’t taken him long to reciprocate.”
NEW YORK—Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jason LaBarbera, Carolina Hurricanes center Rod Brind’Amour and Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending October 28.
from the Washington Times,
No team in professional sports offers as much unfettered access to bloggers as the Caps, though several teams have rolled out special accommodations. The New York Islanders, for instance, created a special “blog box” separate from traditional media members, and other teams have provided credentials on a game-by-game basis. The growing number of bloggers has captured the attention of NHL officials, who are exploring whether a league-wide policy toward bloggers is needed.
“The NHL is looking closely at it,” said Caps chief communications officer Kurt Kehl, who served on a special committee to address the issue at a recent league meeting. “There is some fear of the unknown.”
On Frozen Blog pointed the story out to me and you can read more there…
added 12:41pm, Ted Leonsis chimes in too at Ted’s Take...
Tarik El-Bashir at the Washington Post,
Something’s got to give. Seriously. Here are some basic (but key) stats you need to know:
*Despite the addition of three power play specialists, the unit ranks 27th (4 for 35). That’s a measly 11.4 percent effectiveness rate. Forget about Motzko for a moment, 11.4 percent still isn’t acceptable with players named Ovechkin, Nylander, Kozlov and Poti out there. (The return of Alexander Semin this week should help a ton. But can one player single-handedly turn around the Caps’ pp woes? They had better hope so.)
from the Washington Times,
Did you run into Crosby at any point this summer?
“Yeah, I call him every day,” he said before rolling his eyes. “He’s Crosby, I’m Ovechkin. I am here. He’s over there. Why I have to call him in the summer and say, ‘Hey, what’s up buddy? What are you doing?’ “
Ovechkin’s smugness about the subject underscored the general theme from members of the Washington Capitals organization at practice yesterday
from Empty Netters,
We’re going to jump the gun a bit here and briefly preview the Penguins-Capitals game in Washington Saturday.
Many EN readers have told us of the Capitals’ attempts to minimize the healthy contingent of Penguins fans that usually show up at Verizion Center anytime the Penguins are in town. We went to both Penguins games in Washington last season and there were at least 5,000 Penguins fans in the house each game.
The Capitals are attempting to stage a “white-out” night and are encouraging their fans to wear white to the game. They are also handing out white towels to the first 15,000 that show up.
read on for more and numerous NHL bits…
(sorry, my fault) NHL.com,
In this week’s Head-To-Head, NHL.com’s Evan Grossman and Adam Kimelman debate which superstar is the best all-around player, Washington’s Alex Ovechkin or Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby.
It’s Ovechkin, no contest!
By Evan Grossman | NHL.com Staff Writer
Sidney Crosby and Wayne Gretzky are compared to each other at each and every opportunity. But here’s one you probably haven’t heard before: They are both not the best players of their respective generations.
No disrespect to either guy, but there’s something you people need to wrap your minds around. Gretzky, despite his total rewriting of the record book, was not as good as Mario Lemieux was—just like Crosby, despite his trophy-case first two years in the NHL, is not as good as Alexander Ovechkin….
Sid the Kid is The Man!
By Adam Kimelman | NHL.com Staff Writer
What’s the old saying? Don’t believe the hype?
Take a look at Sidney Crosby. It’s not hype; it’s gospel truth. “Sid the Kid” can’t buy a beer yet, but he’s got a chance to sip something out of that big silver mug the NHL gives away each June….
from D.C. Sports Bog,
At which point Brashear gave out his e-mail address over the radio. I’ll withhold that address for now, although it’s obviously not that hard to find. And what happened next? Aside from a Junkie saying “silly”?
“Five minutes later I’m getting [bleepin’] emails coming in, coming out,” Brashear said. “I’m thinking, ‘A lot of people want to talk to the players, so why not just start a blog and see where it goes?’ “
thanks to On Frozen Blog for the pointer.
from the Washington Capitals,
Watching Nylander darting about in the attack zone, curling off in sharp tight circles to elude defenders and protect the puck, you wonder how hard it would be to play on a line with him. Backstrom is picking up the art of playing with the slick Swedish center.
“I try to be close with him on the ice, so he can pass to me and I can pass back,” says Backstrom. “After a couple [practices] and games, I think I can read what he is going to do. We can know each other, that’s not a big problem. I think that is going to be good.”
As a rookie playing a strange position (left wing) in a strange country and on a smaller ice surface than he is used to, Backstrom is growing accustomed to his new environment both on and off the ice.
from USA TODAY,
What kind of transition do you expect to the NHL?
Backstrom: I have to get used to the smaller rink. I feel better and better, but in the beginning it was tougher than I thought. But I’m playing with good players, so that will make it easier for me. I just have to work on my skating and getting a little quicker, but it’ll be good.
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.
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