Kukla's Korner Hockey
From the AP via Santa Barbara News,
The Boston Bruins recalled goalie Jordan Sigalet from Providence of the AHL on Tuesday after Manny Fernandez sustained a slight strain of his left knee in practice earlier in the day.
Fernandez and another veteran, Tim Thomas, had been sharing the goaltending duties.
Update 7:45pm ET
From Fluto Shinzawa at the Boston Globe,
Chiarelli said the strain might keep Fernandez sidelined for the next two or three days, which might put him out of uniform for Thursday’s game against Buffalo. With Jordan Sigalet recalled to replace Fernandez, all signs point toward Tim Thomas starting on Thursday.
Chiarelli said the strain was not related to the left knee sprain Fernandez sustained last season.
Steve Williamson is on a mission: to visit all 30 arenas and see 30 NHL games in 30 days. So yeah, he’s sort of living our dreams right now.
For months, I’ve been planning the details of this 30 Games In 30 Nights trip. Poring through the NHL schedule for hours to find just the right combination of games, staying away from the frigid winter months when weather could disrupt travel, finding affordable flights that get me into each city by 2pm, coming up with backup travel plans if flights are cancelled, and so on.
So now I’m ready to roll, mentally and physically, for the Ultimate Hockey Road Trip!
Steve is attending his 5th game tonight in Montreal, and our own Paul Kukla had a chance to chat with him this afternoon.
From the CP via NHL.com,
The first month of the 2007-08 season is just about in the books, providing a timely window to examine the players and teams that have made their mark around the NHL.
The Columbus Blue Jackets have surprised while the New York Rangers have disappointed.
Here’s an early look at Canadian Press writers’ best and worst of the season so far.
continued… (*a look at the players, teams, coaches and more)
From Jim Kelly at Sportsnet,
The Habs are a surprising second in the Northeast Division (to Ottawa) and through Monday night were 6-2-2 and tied for third overall in the Eastern Conference and tied for fifth overall with the likes of Philadelphia and Colorado. Isn’t that where Vancouver or maybe Calgary was supposed to be?
To be sure, both the Flames and the Canucks have had their problems, especially in regards keeping the puck out of their respective nets, but the Habs have out-pointed every Canadian entity except the Senators and even have some games in hand in comparison to some teams ahead of them in the standings.
How is this happening you ask? Well, in a word, goaltending.
Tack on another it would be defence and after that add things like timely scoring, smart positional play, a potent power-play attack (often the best in the league so far) and consistently strong lines.
Check out The Hockey News.
They’ve done some drastic new updates to their site, and what I’ve seen looks great.
Ted Montgomery at USA Today takes a look at “players who tend to be overrated by any combination of fans, the media and their own team.” For example:
Dominik Hasek, Detroit:
Hasek is still his acrobatic, unpredictable self, on and off the ice, but he no longer routinely steals games for his team like he once did, and on more than a few occasions, he costs his team a victory with his wanderings from the crease. He’s easily among the worst puck-handling goaltenders of all-time, and his fairly recent tendency to overplay shooters results in some goals that probably shouldn’t have been scored. Add to this the fact that his health always seems tenuous and you get the profile of a once great goaltender who is on that long descent down from the top of the mountain.
more… *check out the full list of 10 “overrated” players.
From Dan Gelston at the AP via USA Today,
Simon Gagne compares his health to a barfly who’s had a few too many stiff drinks.
He stops short, however, of describing what he’s feeling as any kind of lingering symptoms from a concussion.
“Nobody has really said if it’s a concussion,” Gagne said after the Flyers practiced Tuesday. “Right now, it’s more a vision problem and dizziness. I don’t think they call that a concussion.”
Gagne hasn’t played for the Philadelphia Flyers since he was knocked out of last Wednesday’s game against Florida. He has not been cleared to return to the ice.
*A “vision problem and dizziness” and they don’t figure it’s related to a concussion? Odd.
From Kevin Allen at USA Today,
Anaheim Ducks general manager Brian Burke says the Randy Jones hit from behind that injured Patrice Bergeron illustrates why the defensive “bear hug” should be legal when a player is in a vulnerable position.
“In those situations a defenseman has two choices right now: He hits the guy or he looks like a fool,” Burke said. “We need to put the third option back into the game.”
Before the lockout, when a defenseman approached a player with his back to him, he would put his arms around the player and “bear-hug” him into the glass. In an effort to open up the game, the NHL ended that practice by penalizing a player who takes a hand off his stick to tie up a player.
“In the old days, the two bodies went in together,” Burke said. “Now it’s like two billiard balls. One ball hits another and propels it into the boards.”
From Evan Grossman at NHL.com,
It happens all the time. New coach, new attitude, new results.
It happened in New York when the Islanders hired Ted Nolan. The tide turned across town when the Rangers brought Tom Renney on board. Columbus is buzzing with Ken Hitchcock teaching the Jackets how to play, just like the culture shifted when the Carolina Hurricanes hooked up with Peter Laviolette.
The Boston Bruins are hoping that first-year bench boss Claude Julien brings a similar reversal of fortune. The first order of business, right at the top of Julien’s “to do” list, is always to change the culture.
“I don’t know if there’s a challenge, but the one thing you do want to do is establish an identity for this hockey club and we certainly want to have a better year this year,” Julien told NHL.com.
From Chuck Gormley at the Sporting News,
Undaunted, Holmgren systematically transformed an aging, overpriced roster into one with speed, grit, energy and a legitimate chance to double its wins total (22) from a year ago.
“I’ll be honest,” Snider says. “Paul blew me away with the moves he made.”
Many believed that after 13 seasons under Clarke, the Flyers needed a complete front office makeover. But by March 14, Holmgren had carefully dismantled the worst team in club history, exchanging veterans Peter Forsberg, Kyle Calder, Alexei Zhitnik and a second-round draft pick for dynamic young forward Scottie Upshall, promising defensemen Braydon Coburn, Lasse Kukkonen and Ryan Parent and a hungry, resurgent goaltender, Martin Biron.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org