Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Allan Maki of the Globe and Mail,
Saskatchewan-born, Alberta-bred, B.C.-trained, Doan is as Western Canadian as canola and cowboy boots. He can’t forget where he came from because to do so would defy his DNA. He remembers what it was like to be 19 and playing in the NHL and admits that Saturday, when Phoenix plays host to Winnipeg for the first time in their twist-tied existence, there will be a tug at his heartstrings. “A surreal moment,” he says, knowing that at 35 he is the last Coyote with a link to the original Jets. “It was the team that gave me the incredible opportunity to play my first NHL game. I don’t take that lightly.”
But neither should his attachment to the Coyotes be dismissed. As their long-standing captain, Doan has had to address family members, teammates, Jobing.com arena workers even parking attendants on the on-going saga that has been the team’s quest for a new owner. Single-handedly, Doan has kept the flag flying, hopeful the Coyotes will stay where they are, where he feels comfortably at home.
“You look at Atlanta [whose Thrashers became the new Jets] and you’re almost jealous. It’s over and done with. We’ve had to deal with it for two, three years,” Doan says. “Last year, the hardest part was the playoffs. We’d made it and we were playing Detroit and on the day of the game it was announced when we’re beat out we’re going to be moving. Instead of feeling that incredible excitement, it stole the joy out of what we’d accomplished.
from Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press,
The Chicago Blackhawks are the gold standard in the NHL and the Winnipeg Jets were given a first-hand look at what the elite look like and how they operate on Thursday.
Chicago showed the Jets how things are done on the ice as well as they erased an early 2-0 Winnipeg lead and steamed their way to a 4-3 victory.
The Jets didn’t have enough horsepower to stick with the Blackhawks all night and it underlined where Winnipeg is as a team and an organization right now. They’ve got a plan but it’s far from fleshed out. These Jets will need some patience.
Chicago, on the other hand, just two summers removed from a Stanley Cup romp, are a well-oiled machine with the most expensive of parts.
The Hawks have it all from Norris Trophy calibre defenceman in Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook to an elite forward group that includes Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, Patrick Sharpe, Marian Hossa and Dave Bolland.
Jay Beagle started strong, but Arron Asham finished the job.
What do you think of Asham’s gestures after the fight?
via CBC press release,
Saturday night’s game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Ottawa Senators was a record-setter for CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA, with an average audience of 2.359 million viewers tuning in—nine per cent more than the previous record-holder for the first Saturday game of the season, set last year.
Ratings data from the Bureau of Broadcast Measurement (BBM) show the game had a total TV audience share of 31.3 per cent, reaching more than 7.55 million Canadians, almost a quarter of the country’s population. The late game, which saw the Calgary Flames hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins, had a share of 17.5 per cent, reaching more than five million Canadians, garnering an average audience of just over one million viewers.
On Sunday, the first Winnipeg Jets home opener since 1996 drew an average total audience of 1.825 million Canadians.
No words needed here.
from Tim Campbell of the Winnipeg Free Press,
As ready goes, they’d already like to be rolling down the runway.
The new version of the Jets, though, must wait one more day before it’s time for takeoff on the NHL’s return-to-Winnipeg season.
The Jets and Montreal Canadiens will usher in the new era of the NHL here at 4 p.m.(5pm ET) Sunday at the MTS Centre.
“I don’t think this is a routine week,” said Jets left-winger Evander Kane, his team now only one practice away from getting to the start line. “It’s a week that hasn’t happened in this city for 15 years.
“Looking at Sunday, I think it’s a game where history is made and guys are excited and the city’s excited. It’s going to be a real special game.”
Will you be tuning it to watch the game, which is on the NHL Network in the US and CBC in Canada?
from Kristina Rutherford of Sportsnet,
As the buzzer sounded at Winnipeg Arena and the Jets skated off the ice for the last time, Derek Meech stood in shock.
His face paint messy from tears, the 12-year-old was dressed in white for the final fight, and this was it.
The Jets were leaving town.
“It was hard to see them leave,” Meech, now 27, recalls. “After the game, none of the fans were leaving and tons of people were crying. It was a great experience but it was also pretty sad.”
The Winnipeg native never dreamed that 15 years later the franchise would return—and even better—that he’d be a part of the homecoming.
from Ross Romaniuk of the Winnipeg Sun,
The NHL Face-Off event at the historic site became the city’s largest party since news of the Jets’ return to Winnipeg spurred downtown street celebrations on May 31. And the six-hour, nationally televised bash, complete with rock bands including Winnipeg’s Bachman & Turner, saw tens of thousands attend after it officially began at 3 p.m.
“Everyone is really excited and in a good mood,” Erin Epps, wearing a Jets cap and shirt, said with her husband Robert Dalton and children aged 10 and three. “It’s been 15 years! It’s energy!”
The energy and crowd roar grew dramatically when a few Jets players, including captain Andrew Ladd, took to the site’s stage to greet the massive throng, and when Winnipeg-raised rock star Neil Young appeared on a video screen wearing a new Jets jersey and yelling, “Go Jets!”
Minutes later, Bachman & Turner threw the line, “We just got back the Jets,” into their 1970s hit You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet, bringing the audience noise to a pitch.
Also, a short video from the NHL Face-Off can be watched below…
From Judy Owen of the CP via Winnipeg Free Press:
Andrew Ladd was idling in the drive-thru line at Tim Hortons when it was his turn to move up to the window.
As he was passed his coffee, the clerk told Ladd it had been paid for by the person in the vehicle in front of his.
“It was pretty neat,” the Winnipeg Jets captain said. “Obviously, for them to recognize me from the car ahead was something that usually doesn’t happen.”
Such is the fish bowl the Jets will be swimming in since it was announced May 31 that the Atlanta Thrashers had been bought by True North Sports and Entertainment and were moving to NHL-starved Winnipeg.
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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