Kukla's Korner Hockey
From John Glennon at The Tennessean,
The Predators will reach the paid attendance average necessary to qualify for the National Hockey League’s full revenue-sharing plan this year, team officials said Monday.
That means the Predators will receive in the neighborhood of $12 million, money that will help them re-sign their own players and free agents as well.
continued… *the NHL minimum paid attendance average for revenue sharing is 13,125; the Predators have averaged 13,145 through this season’s home games, with just 5 remaining
Update 8:56pm ET: More from David Naylor in Tuesday’s Globe & Mail.
From the Sports Network via WJAC,
Struggling to get into the postseason, the Philadelphia Flyers learned on Monday that defenseman Derian Hatcher will be out for the season with a fractured right tibia and forward R.J. Umberger will miss the next two weeks with a sprained MCL.
Hatcher was hurt with 12:07 left in the first period of Saturday’s 3-2 overtime loss to Boston while blocking a slap shot by Bruins forward Andrew Ference. Hatcher was helped off the ice and did not return. The right leg was broken just above the ankle and was placed in a cast on Saturday. It is possible he might return to play if the Flyers make the postseason.
From the AP via the Santa Barbara News-Press,
After the longest winning streak in franchise history, Roenick’s only remaining question is whether the Sharks can ride this wave all the way into June.
San Jose’s club-record 11-game roll ended Sunday night, but the 2-1 shootout loss to Edmonton still produced the Sharks’ 23rd point in 12 games. Led by a rejuvenated captain, a new defenseman and a tireless goalie, San Jose has replied to the doubters who saw the preseason Stanley Cup favorites’ first 60 games as a disappointment - particularly the five before their winning run.
‘‘We had that five-game losing streak, and when you’re in a playoff race and you get scared of actually missing the playoffs, it gets your attention,’’ said Roenick, recalling a miserable trip from New Jersey to Philadelphia right before the streak began.
From the AP via SI,
Okposo graciously greeted Sillinger on Monday as he pulled off his Islanders jersey for the first time after practice. Two years after he was chosen by New York with the No. 7 pick in the draft, Okposo is set to make his NHL debut Tuesday night when the host Islanders face the Toronto Maple Leafs.
“You’re going to be 20 in April, right?’’ Sillinger asked. “Yup, I’m 19,’’ the reply quickly came.
“I’m 37,’’ the veteran of 17 NHL seasons said with a laugh. “I could be your dad. I’ve got a kid who’s 15.’‘
And with that, Sillinger - recovering from recent hip surgery that ended his season - walked away. In a season that has quickly unraveled for the Islanders, Okposo is providing something for the franchise to look forward to.
From Tom Reed at Puck-rakers,
You just knew the Jackets’ good health wouldn’t last. Goaltender Pascal Leclaire will miss at least the next two games with a possible concussion, coach Ken Hitchcock said. He was struck in the mask with a puck during pre-game warm-ups on Sunday.
Freddy Norrena will make his second straight start against Calgary on Tuesday night in Nationwide in what promises to be a testy game. [...]
Jackets’ winger David Vyborny is out for 7-to-10 days with a knee sprain. There was fear Sunday night that Vyborny’s season and possibly his Blue Jackets career might have been over.
And from TSN: “The Blue Jackets called up goaltender Dan LaCosta from the Syracuse Crunch of the AHL on an emergency basis.”
From the CP via TSN,
Alex Kovalev said making a hockey DVD for charity was prompted by his own heart troubles as a child in Russia.
The Montreal Canadiens star forward released a two-DVD set on Monday called “Alex Kovalev - My Hockey Tips And Training Methods.”
All proceeds will go toward helping kids around the world with cardiac problems.
Alex Kovalev could shatter some long-standing Canadiens records this season if he continues to put up points on the power play. With 16 goals and 26 assists with the man advantage, Kovalev is within four goals of Yvan Cournoyer’s record of 20 set in 1966-67. Kovalev is also eight points shy of Mats Naslund’s points record set in 1985-86 when he had 19 goals and 31 assists on the power play.
From Rick Couchman at Hockey.com,
Someone is going to die, someday, but luckily for Tom Pohl, he came out on the fortunate end of things.
There was a close-call in Minnesota last night, but it looks like the hockey fraternity dodged a bullet this time, and considering the events, it could have been tragic.
Let’s face it, some collisions are so significant that you can’t help but wonder how people survive. Especially when it involves someone’s skull smashing into the boards.
continued… *Pohl is in intensive care at the Mayo Clinic, but doing well so far
From Sam Weinman at Rangers Report,
When Brendan Shanahan walked off the ice and saw a large group of media around his locker today, he correctly guessed that the conversation around the team had changed.
“Let me guess: today you’re not going to ask when a good time is to start resting everybody,” he said.
From Chuck Gormley at the Sporting News,
Break out the sun screen and beach chairs. The Florida Panthers are in hot pursuit of a playoff spot.
With a franchise-record seven-game win streak, the Panthers are biting at the heels of the eighth-place Philadelphia Flyers. And with two games coming up against the Washington Capitals and Carolina Hurricanes, they’re even flirting with what was unthinkable two weeks ago: a South-least Division title.
“There’s a good energy going around,” Panthers defenseman Steve Montador said. “There’s a little bit of a buzz.”
Update 4:28pm ET: Eric Duhatschek at the Globe & Mail wonders if this is the Year of the Panther.
Update 5:33pm ET: Apparently Florida is the story of the day. Pierre LeBrun at Sportsnet.ca also checks in with some thoughts.
Spector scans the NHL, looking at speculations out of Columbus, Atlanta and Edmonton.
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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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