Kukla's Korner Hockey
via Puck-rakers at the Columbus Dispatch,
Good for the Predators. You may hate them, Blue Jackets fans, but you’ve got to give this club credit for the way it competes. I maintain that Barry Trotz is a no-brainer for coach of the year. Bruce Boudreau second.
Anybody who votes for Mike Babcock is a joke. Arace, Reed and Portzline could coach that club to 48 regular season wins, easy. We’d get beat in the second-round of the playoffs, but ...
from John Glennon at Chilling Out at the Tennessean,
...But the Wings were sunk in Game 4 due in part to the poor goaltending of Dominik Hasek, a six-time Vezina Trophy winner. And Detroit coach Mike Babcock just announced that Chris Osgood will replace Hasek for Game 5.
Maybe we shouldn’t be surprised at this.
After all, Ellis outplayed Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo down the stretch, as the Predators battled the Canucks for the final Western Conference playoff spot.
What’s another all-star to knock off at this point?
From the AP via KTEN.com
Anaheim right wing Corey Perry said he probably will play in Game 4 of the Ducks’ playoff series against the Dallas Stars.
After a morning skate-around, Perry said he felt good but acknowledged it will be a game-time decision whether he will play Thursday night. The Ducks’ top goal scorer hasn’t played since March 6, when the quad tendon above his right knee was lacerated by the skate of Colorado goalie Jose Theodore.
Fellow right wing Rob Niedermayer did not make the trip to Dallas for Thursday night’s game, remaining home with concussion-like symptoms. He also missed Game 3.
From the AP via the Mercury News,
Dominik Hasek is out, and Chris Osgood is in.
Hasek said Thursday that Red Wings coach Mike Babcock told him Osgood will start Game 5 against the Nashville Predators, who won two straight at home to even the first-round series 2-all.
From Red Wings Corner:
Asked whether Osgood will be the Red Wings’ netminder for the remainder of the playoffs, coach Mike Babcock laughed and said, “Just win baby.”
April 17, 1977 • Don Kozak of the Los Angeles Kings scored the fastest goal from the start of an NHL playoff game, tallying just six seconds into his club’s 7-4 win over the Boston Bruins in Game Four of their Quarter-final series.
April 17, 1997 • New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur became just the second goaltender in NHL playoff history to score a goal, coming in a 5-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens in Game One of their Eastern Conference Quarter-final. Philadelphia’s Ron Hextall was the first goaltender to score a goal in the playoffs, on April 11, 1989 versus the Washington Capitals.
*information courtesy of NHL media
From the CP via The Hockey News,
“I don’t take responsibility for the team losing in the playoffs, I’ll tell you that much,” Emery told a throng of media in the Senators dressing room. “I showed up late for practice twice this year and had an opportunity to still go on the ice and they told me to go home. When some other guys are late coming to the rink they’re just fine ...”
Emery has been blamed by many for ruining the chemistry on a team that many had picked to go back to the Stanley Cup final. But he disagrees that he was that much of a distraction.
“I don’t think I was a model citizen but in no way did I not encourage my teammates or take away from what they were trying to do,” said Emery.
Update 3:48pm ET: Go here for video of Emery’s statements from TSN.
From Eric Stephens at the LA Times,
In the first two games of their Western Conference quarterfinal series against the Dallas Stars, the Ducks saw a Chris Pronger they don’t want to see. The invisible one.
They prefer the hard-skating, occasionally nasty one who scored two goals in Game 3.
Good or bad, the 6-foot-6 Pronger always draws attention. And in his drive to win, he sometimes crosses the line, as evidenced by his eight career suspensions, including an eight-game punishment toward the end of the regular season.
But Pronger’s performance Tuesday night showed why such reprimands by the NHL are something to simply accept.
From Tom Cowlishaw at the Dallas News,
Repeat after me. In the National Hockey League, there is no home-ice advantage.
I think we all know the Stars’ sad numbers since moving from their cozier digs at Reunion Arena. They have won one home game in their last seven playoff tries against Colorado, Vancouver and now Anaheim.
I find this trivia question rather amazing.When’s the last time the Stars won a playoff series on their home ice?
Think about it for a second. That’s long enough.
NHL Director of Officiating Stephen Walkom will be the guest on the NHL Hour today, hosted by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.
The show is on from 4-5 p.m. ET today on XM Satellite Radio (Channel 204) and NHL.com. NHL Hour is an interactive talk radio show that is hosted by a rotation of League executives, and co-hosted by XM sports host and former NHL player Bill Clement.
**Archived shows available for download via a podcast on NHL.com.
from Sean Crowe at Sports Central,
...Nothing more than a highlight on “SportsCenter.” Somewhere between soccer and arena football. And I’m not sure what they need to do to fix the problem. I’m not sure it can be fixed.
In the minds of U.S. hockey fans, the sport has morphed into ... soccer. Something we’ll get excited about once every four years when we pretend to care about the Olympics.
It’s time to stop kidding ourselves. If there are four major professional sports in the United States, the NHL isn’t one of them. If there are five, the NHL probably isn’t one of them. If there are six, the NHL might be one of them.
It sucks, but it’s where we are.
The NHL is dead.
The question is, how do we bring it back to life?
more if you want…. And one word for the author, SeanCYA!
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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