Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Dealing With The Vancouver Losing Streak

from Mike Halford at Orland Kurtenblog,

After a surprisingly strong start to the season, the Vancouver Canucks have lost eight in a row and are falling further and further down the standings. As you’ve no doubt read in this very publication, the Canucks’ struggles have left many passionate supporters in a state of crisis.

We went to our preferred mode of communication—internet messenger—to discuss the fallout….

Mike says: look at the red wings last year…they lost 10 of 11 in february and went on to win the stanley cup

Jason says
: ya, we’re just like the red wings!

Mike says: no, we’re even better, because we have mats sundin!

Jason says: wow, denial is easy

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Kovalev Plans To Play Better

from the CP via the Globe and Mail,

Alex Kovalev admits he has to start playing better hockey, especially with injuries mounting on the Montreal Canadiens.

The big winger, who led the team with 84 points last season, was benched for most of the third period of a 3-1 loss to the Boston Bruins on Sunday for his listless play.

He then met with coach Guy Carbonneau to clear the air.

“He’s the coach, I’m a player, he does his job, I do mine,” Kovalev said Tuesday. “He’s not going to come on the ice and do my job, and when I do it better, everybody’s happy. So the important thing for me is to play better.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexei+kovalev

The Future Of The Blues

from John Grigg of The Hockey News,

Watched some of the Detroit-St.Louis game on Versus last night. The panel was gushing over the Blues’ kid line of Patrik Berglund between T.J. Oshie and David Backes. Can’t say I blame them….

Most telling, the young trio is a combined plus-11 (with Berglund leading the Blues at plus-13 and Oshie second at plus-6), while Brad Boyes and Keith Tkachuk – the team’s veterans up front – have combined for a miserable minus-38 rating (Boyes’ minus-25 puts him at No. 814 in the NHL, third-last overall, despite a team-leading 41 points).

With Tkachuk likely on his way out – possibly for good this time – around the March 4 trade deadline, Andy McDonald an unrestricted free agent come July 1 and Paul Kariya heading into the final season of his contract in 2009-10, the Blues will be handed over to the kids soon enough.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Ducks Giving Giguere Time To Find His Game

from Dan Wood at Ducks Blog at the OC Register,

“What we’re trying to do is give Giguere an opportunity to do what he has to do to get his game back,” Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said Monday night. “The guy is going through a huge loss in his life. He lost his father. We feel we have to give him the time and space, try to create an environment around him that allows him some time. That’s the most important thing. We think this is the best route to take in this situation, and we’re going to live with it….”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jean-sebastien+giguere

Lindros Resigns From NHLPA Post

via Sportsnet,

The NHLPA ombudsman Eric Lindros has resigned from his post, Sportsnet has learned.

Lindros was hired by the Players’ Association back in November of 2007. The newly created position was added under the ratified NHLPA constitution and allowed Lindros to resolve any complaints by members and/or staff of the NHLPA while reporting directly to the executive board.

Filed in: NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: eric+lindros

Tuesday Talk

from Charlie Teljeur of the Hockey News,

• Although he’s been cleared by doctors (obviously Columbus season ticket holders) to keep playing, Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Steve Mason is battling mononucleosis. I’d actually like to see him play through this entire crisis, get the team into the playoffs and lead the Blue Jackets to the Stanley Cup. Then, as payback, Mason should be the first to drink champagne out of the cherished mug. I can hear his teammates now: “No, it’s OK, I’m really not that thirsty.”

• Oh yes, for all those with Peter Forsberg Farewell Tour 2009 tickets, please be advised the concert has been officially cancelled for the second consecutive year, although we will honor your tickets during any of the next three years.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Will Stars Upswing Continue To Rise?

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

What comes next for the Stars will be fascinating to watch. Will they remain a bubble team or push even higher and get back to the contending team they were last season? The Anaheim Ducks are vulnerable in fifth place of the conference. Fourth-place Chicago might be too much to track down.

“I don’t anticipate this team needing any more lessons and needing any more reminders of the position we’re in,” said Turco. “We pay attention to where we are in the standings. It’s been a habit over the course of this season. As a group, we appreciate the dwellers that we were and what it’s taken to climb back in the playoff picture. I don’t think anybody in the locker room is content.”

The confidence is back in a group that was absolutely shaken two months into the season.

“When you’re winning and doing the right things, that’s contagious,” said Tippett. “If your locker room is right, the coach does less talking about the right things to do and the players do all the talking for you. That’s a little bit of where we are right now.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Canucks Have Done It Again

from Ian MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun,

Mats Sundin and the Canucks have done the impossible—transforming what seemed a no-lose situation into a torpedo to the hull of the team. And that spectacular achievement perfectly encapsulates the 39-year history of a futile franchise that lost the coin flip for Gilbert Perreault and never recovered.

The Canucks got Dale Tallon instead of Perreault.

They recruited all-world players Igor Larionov and Vladimir Krutov, who combined for 63 goals in three seasons here.

They drafted Dan Woodley over Brian Leetch, Brad Ference over Marian Hossa.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Best Of The Week

Almost six minutes of the best goals, saves and hits from the past week in the NHL.

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Media, NHL Video, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Streaky Season

from Steve Milton of the Hamilton Spectator,

Since returning from its lockout with a salary cap, new rules, shootouts, consistent personnel turnover and increasing parity, the NHL has become a league of streaks. Good ones and bad ones.

And few teams are immune from the streakiness, where a good team can lose four in a row in the blink of an eye, where one of the lesser teams can reel off five straight wins against better opponents.

There are 17 teams that have already had at least one winning streak of four games or longer and at least one losing streak of four games or longer. Many have had more than one of each.

And, of the remaining 13 teams, most have come close to that kind of double and may hit it before the end of the year.

There are only six teams in the league that haven’t lost at least four in a row and they are Boston, Calgary, Chicago, and San Jose—four of the top five teams in the league—the rising Dallas Stars and the New York Rangers, who have Henrik Lundqvist to terminate potential losing streaks. Of those teams, only San Jose hasn’t lost three in a row.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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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

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