Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

More Injuries Coming

from Michael Fargber of Sports Illustrated,

The first thing that fans might notice is that some of the players with bigger curves have problems handling or passing the puck -- the reasons why a handful of general managers were originally reluctant to make a change. Of course, the perception of the bigger curves might change when a rising shot clips a visor-less defenseman's eye and changes that player's perception permanently. For the moment, the Board of Governors' anticipated move is one more reminder that the PA is the only union in the world that does not make safety in the workplace its leading priority. Not to dump all this on the association. Too often, the PA is in tune with its rank and file, which prefers the freedom to choose on the visor issue, picks its helmets based on how they look in the mirror, and tolerates the current icing rule. Actually, the more-liberal curve suits an important part of the PA's constituency: skilled European players who grew up playing under International Ice Hockey Federation rules, which permitted a larger curve.
read on

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Everybody Into The Pool

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

The temptation, when selecting your hockey-pool team for the upcoming 2006-07 season, is ponder last year's scoring totals, discover that two players — the San Jose Sharks' Joe Thornton and the New York Rangers' Jaromir Jagr — were head-and-shoulders above the rest of the competition; and rank them 1-2 again. Theoretically, the problem with this strategy is it flies against the face of recent history. Over the past couple of years, the National Hockey League's scoring champion one seaon, had a difficult time cracking the top 30 the next.
continued...plus their top 200 players for your pool...

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Listen Closely

The New York Rangers did a recent interview with Brendan Shanahan and I would hope more athletes would read these words carefully...

"There's a certain degree of professionalism that has to do with how you carry yourself on and off the ice. Preparation and things like that," he said. "I was fortunate to play with some great veterans, and now and in recent years, I've been kind of thrust in the position where I'm a veteran player and other young players you notice are kind of looking at you. Some don't want information, but others can't get enough of it."
Brendan also had this to say about the original six teams, and it does make me wonder why many of the Detroit fans were happy to see him leave...
"Just the traditions and the histories of the Original Six are something pretty special," said Shanahan. "When you've got alumni who date way back. In Detroit we had Ted Lindsay or Gordie Howe coming down to our dressing room, and things like that. It makes it really special and it adds to the importance of what we're doing. The other clubs are all developing their own traditions and histories, but the Original Six teams obviously have an edge."
more

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Fedorov Out 4-6 Weeks

via the AP,

Blue Jackets center Sergei Fedorov will be out four to six weeks after injuring his left shoulder in an exhibition game, the club said on Wednesday. A team spokesman would not elaborate on the injury. The 16-year NHL veteran, who spent most of his career with the Detroit Red Wings, was injured in the second period of Columbus' 4-1 victory over Buffalo Tuesday night. Fedorov was skating toward the right side of the net when Sabres rookie forward Jiri Novotny came from behind and kicked out Fedorov's left leg. Fedorov was upended and slid into the boards. Blue Jackets coach Gerard Gallant said after the game that it was a clean play and Novotny was not trying to hurt Fedorov.

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Stars Surprise Their Fans

The Dallas fans were in for a surprise (will open wmp video) when attending their first home exhibition game. Very nice and I would be interested if any other teams have done something similar. image

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Quick Camp Hits

Geared towards the fantasy player, FoxSports makes some quick observations around the NHL training camps.

Raffi Torres is flying and has picked up where he left off in last season's playoff run. Petr Prucha will likely start the season on the Rangers' third-line and see reduced power-play ice time. Danny Markov has looked solid and should start the season as a top-four defenseman in Detroit.
more added 1:49pm, more of the same from the Hockey News regarding the western conference teams,
In Colorado, coach Joel Quenneville stated Tyler Arnason was the best player on the ice in the annual Burgundy vs. White game. Arnason must prove himself in camp, as he pretty much played his way out of both Chicago and Ottawa with a perceived lack of effort…

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Standard Of Play

USA Hockey and the National Hockey League (NHL) have joined together in a nationwide effort to create awareness of USA Hockey’s new Standard of Play and Rules Enforcement initiative. Playing off the success of the NHL’s effort during the 2005-06 season, USA Hockey’s Board of Directors unanimously passed a Standard of Play and Rules Enforcement initiative in June that is being implemented at all levels of youth hockey in the United States in 2006-07. In short, the initiative calls for zero tolerance in regard to holding, hooking, slashing, tripping and interference. USA Hockey and the NHL have targeted the period of Sept. 28 – Oct. 6 to highlight the initiative through various means, although the effort will be on-going. During the nine-day period, awareness will be heightened through NHL players visiting youth hockey practices to speak on the Standard of Play, distribution of posters to rinks across the country, coverage on usahockey.com and nhl.com and coverage through various media outlets, including on Versus (OLN) during the opening week of NHL play. “This is one of the most significant initiatives that has ever been implemented by USA Hockey,” said Ron DeGregorio, president of USA Hockey. “While there will be growing pains and patience needed, the end result, as we’ve already witnessed in the National Hockey League, will be a game where skill can be showcased instead of hindered through illegal tactics that were once viewed as acceptable.” “We took a needed step forward last year with a number of rule changes and our new standard of rules enforcement and it proved to be a tremendous success,” said Gary Bettman, commissioner of the National Hockey League. “I commend USA Hockey for moving to implement the new standard throughout all levels of youth hockey.” For more information on USA Hockey’s new Standard of Play and Rules Enforcement, visit usahockey.com.

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Count Them Out

from Terry Frei at ESPN,

Fighting is down, and if famous boxing referee Mills Lane had an orange band on his sleeve, he would have just reached eight on the count for NHL enforcers. If the role is filled at all, it's being done mostly by "gritty" wingers who are willing to consider the job part of their portfolio but not their primary duty. Darren McCarty, anyone? And to the credit of players like that, the era of the slug on skates who couldn't play a lick has been over for years, meaning even the NHL's tough guys have had to be able to play.
more

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Bertuzzi Out With Rib Injury

from ESPN,

Panthers coach Jacques Martin told local reporters Tuesday that X-rays on Bertuzzi's ribs were inconclusive, but that the winger might have a cracked rib after taking a hard hit in Monday's preseason game against Edmonton. Bertuzzi will miss the next four preseason games and will head back to South Florida on Wednesday to meet with team doctors and undergo a CT scan. "After all of that, we'll know exactly the extent of the injury and the time frame on his return," Martin told local reporters Tuesday. "Right now he has some pain, but that's to be expected of a rib injury. I just don't know when he'll be back."

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Gomez Will Probably Test The Market

from the Record,

"It's something that comes around once in a career," Gomez said of unrestricted free agency. "Whatever happens, happens, but I don't want any distractions during the year. I want to play my best for this team. I want to give my all for this organization and for the state of New Jersey. I don't want anything else in my head." Gomez also is trying to block out the possibility that this could be his last season as a Devil. "People constantly bring it up," he said. "You can never look too far ahead. You just take it one day at a time and have as much fun as you can on that day, and then you wake up the next one. That's kind of our family motto. Time will take care of itself."
more

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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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