Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

What Happened To Team Russia?

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

•  The failure of the KHL and NHL players on the roster to blend into a cohesive team was clear and apparent. There were rumors in the past few days of tension in the Russian camp, and at the heart of it was the KHL-NHL issue. Why in the world was Alexander Popov playing on the top line with Ovechkin and Malkin the past two games? Why was KHL defenseman Evgeni Medvedev among the leaders in ice time on the team, playing more than NHLers such as Fedor Tyutin and Alexei Emelin?

Why? Because the KHL and Russian hockey hoped to use the world's biggest hockey games as a propaganda tool for the Russian professional league that vies to rival the NHL. Well, that was a complete and utter disaster.

•  Which leads you to also finger the coach, known as "Coach Bil." His bizarre decisions, including having Malkin on a second-unit power play, which featured the likes of Nikolai Kulemin, well, that just made no sense.

more including the coach calling out Ovechkin...

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sochi+olympics, team+russia

Comments

Paul's avatar

I can tell you what we are going to hear in the coming days…

If the Russian NHL players played in the KHL, Team Russia would have been better.  They will draw comparisons to Canada and Team USA.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 02/19/14 at 01:56 PM ET

Paul's avatar

The Wall Street Journal posted part of the media scurm with the Russian coach post game..

Interesting read.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 02/19/14 at 02:00 PM ET

detroitredwings's avatar

Kill Bill, Vol 3

Posted by detroitredwings on 02/19/14 at 02:04 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

So the question becomes will Pavel and the other Russian NHLers actually make it on to the charter plane or will they mysteriously disappear? Pavs, don’t accept that invitation to see Putin’s dacha, it’s a tarp!

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 02/19/14 at 02:34 PM ET

Paul's avatar

CDP, I suggested to George he sleep on that charter, take no chances.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 02/19/14 at 02:36 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

CDP, I suggested to George he sleep on that charter, take no chances.
Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 02/19/14 at 01:36 PM ET

Maybe Pavs can charter a fishing boat to take him out to the USS Mount Whitney and ask for asylum.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 02/19/14 at 02:41 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

Even NHL to NHL chemistry was lacking on team RUS. Arguably the best forward tandem was Datsyuk to Kovalchuk, which is NHL/KHL. That team wasn’t much of a “team” but an assortment of players.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 02/19/14 at 04:13 PM ET

Avatar

Two biggest problems I saw, in order, were

a) D wasn’t good enough. And I don’t mean at defending, I mean at making a breakout pass. Other than Markov, who skates like a tractor now, and, to a lesser extent, Tyutin, nobody could get the puck up to the forwards in stride, either accurately or intelligently. Sweden, Canada, the US and possibly even Finland left guys off their rosters that make a better first pass than anyone Russia brought.

b) Alex Ovechkin is a dog. He’s a caricature of Brett Hull without the hockey IQ. If it’s not time to shoot a one-timer, this guy’s just poison for his line. Turns the puck over, doesn’t get back, doesn’t cycle, doesn’t skate, doesn’t battle, doesn’t know where his linemates are, doesn’t know where the passing lanes are.

“Hey, you guys do everything…Imma just chill over here until its time for you to give me the glory.”

Uh, good luck medaling with that attitude. It must kill MSL and a half-dozen others that this guy is the reigning MVP.

c) five man units. The idea of five man units used to work because the old soviet teams played together for so long that they could read each other blindfolded. That’s not the case with Team Russia in 2014, so this idea was pointless and put Russia at a disadvantage with almost every matchup.

Posted by larry on 02/19/14 at 05:03 PM ET

Avatar

By two, I meant three

Posted by larry on 02/19/14 at 05:03 PM ET

Add a Comment

Please limit embedded image or media size to 575 pixels wide.

Add your own avatar by joining Kukla's Korner, or logging in and uploading one in your member control panel.

Captchas bug you? Join KK or log in and you won't have to bother.

Smileys

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Feed

Most Recent Blog Posts

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 pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

image

image