Kukla's Korner Hockey
From the Edmonton Journal,
Dustin Penner has been setting up shop in front of the net when the Oilers have had the man advantage, but he hasn’t been able to bang one in. He has one goal in his last 10 games.
“We need those to start going in for us,” MacTavish said. “We need that efficiency around the net.”
“It’s a matter of getting more hungry for the pucks, more tenacious,” said Penner. “You just have to have the mentality that the next shot is going in, that you’re due.”
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from the Toronto Star,
Yes, the Maple Leafs have lost their last three games.
Yes, the players acknowledge the quotient of fans abandoning all hope is growing exponentially with every loss.
No, the team is not giving up.
“You fight through the adversity you face,” said an impassioned Leafs head coach Paul Maurice.
“You’re going to have to believe during those times when nobody else will, when (critics) will look at the last two months and tie them into the last 41 years and say: `Well, things haven’t changed.’
Joe Juneau making a difference….
From Sam McCaig at THN,
Numbers don’t lie.
1. Montreal, at 10-4-3, is tied with Colorado for the third-best winning percentage in the league (.676). Not bad for a team The Hockey News predicted would finish 13th in the Eastern Conference this season. The New Jersey Devils, at 7-9-2, were holding down 13th in the East through Nov. 15.
2. Buffalo, at 6-10-1, is 29th in the league in winning percentage (.382), ahead of only Washington (6-11-1, .361). And have you heard this one about Buffalo? They haven’t scored the first goal in 14 consecutive games;
From Chris Yzerman at CP via Yahoo,
The confidence of goaltender Martin Gerber is also sky high and, after a difficult first season in Canada’s capital, the 33-year-old has emerged as the surprise No. 1 netminder on the NHL’s hottest club out of the gate.
“I think we’ve had a good thing going since training camp started as a team and kept really building from it. Personally, I got my game back and feel more comfortable in there,” says the 33-year-old native of Burgdorf, Switzerland, who will be in goal Saturday when the Senators visit the Air Canada Centre to face the Toronto Maple Leafs (7 p.m. ET).
With a 3-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday night, Gerber recorded his league-leading 12th victory of the season against just one defeat.
more… on Gerber’s career rebound
From the Dallas Stars,
The Dallas Stars announced today that the club has placed defenseman Mattias Norstrom on the injured reserve list retroactive to November 9. The Stars also recalled defenseman Mark Fistric from the Iowa Stars, Dallas’ primary development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL).
Norstrom, 35, suffered a small fracture to his orbital bone in the Stars’ Nov. 7 contest at San Jose and will be re-evaluated in two weeks.
From The Tennessean,
David Freeman, head of the group buying the Nashville Predators hockey team, put out this statement this afternoon:
“We are excited to reach an agreement with the Mayor’s Office on lease changes to keep the Predators in Nashville under local ownership. We are very appreciative of Mayor Dean for getting this done amid the many priorities he has as the new mayor of our city. He obviously has a strong desire for this hockey team to remain in Nashville.”
continued… with the rest of the statement
Updated 5:52pm ET: From the AP via USA Today,
Mayor Karl Dean said the agreement guarantees the team will stay in Nashville for the next five years or the city’s financial investment will be paid back.
The changes for the Sommet Center must be approved by the Metro Sports Authority and city council. The NHL Board of Governors must approve the $193 million sale.
From Pierre Lebrun, CP via MetroNews,
“It’s just part of the business. I’m viewing this as a great time to teach them how to respond to adversity. I have to be strong at home and go out and get another job and let them know that when you have a setback and you have to stand up and get back on your feet. That’s what society demands and that’s what we demand of ourselves.”
Armstrong’s deal with the Stars pays him through the 2010-11 season but he doesn’t plan on sitting on the couch. He wants to work.
He’s already been contacted from numerous friends around the league and given his excellent reputation he needn’t worry.
“Someone said when you get let go, because it’s never if but when, just make a list of names of people that called you and that’ll give you a pretty good feeling of what you’ve done,” said Armstrong. “So I’ve got that list and I’m on the third or fourth page now. It means a lot when people around the league reach out to you and show their support.”
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Maybe it’s time to frame the discussion about what’s going on by asking the question: Is the game of hockey, played at the NHL level, too fast for its own good?
There’s little doubt that the league, in the post-lockout era, is collectively faster than ever. The players are bigger, stronger and fitter. The equipment has never been more evolved. Attempts to get obstruction out of the game have largely succeeded, meaning there is flow and speed again through the neutral zone, which wasn’t always the case in the dark days prior to the lockout when the clutch-and-grab style trumped all others.
The unhappy byproduct of all this speed, however, is that the game changed again — and it became all about reaction and instinct….
read on plus more NHL bits…
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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