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Saturday Afternoon Hockey Notes

from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe, 

- Tough break for the Wild, who will be without second-pairing defenseman Jonas Brodin for at least one month. The left-shot defenseman was diagnosed with a broken finger after Minnesota’s 4-3 loss to New Jersey on Tuesday. Through 43 games, Brodin had three goals and 13 assists while averaging 19:46 of ice time. It had been a much better season for Brodin. Last year, he fought through a 2-5—7 line in 68 games. But under first-year coach Bruce Boudreau, Brodin has recovered to the point where the Wild face a tough decision regarding expansion. The Wild are not likely to use the 7-3-1 format to protect three defensemen....

- If the GMs are serious about improving their rosters, they would not hesitate to accelerate next year’s trade deadline by at least two weeks. This year’s deadline is March 1, which likely means another month of inactivity while teams debate whether they’re buyers or sellers.

Five weeks of regular-season play isn’t enough for deadline acquisitions to assimilate with their new teams. But the bigger issue is how the lousy points system creates massive clusters in the standings until it’s too late.

The Red Wings, for example, still believe they can extend their playoff streak to 26 seasons, even though they’d have to vault over five teams. More than a half-season of stagnant rosters does nothing to engage trade-hungry fans. Owners fume over gear-grinding while their executives have their hands tied. The solution seems simple: make the deadline earlier.

- As tempting as it might seem for Detroit to re-sign Thomas Vanek, the wiser decision would be to sell the UFA-to-be to the highest bidder. Given Vanek’s resurgence (12-19—31 in 34 games), the rebuilding Red Wings could ask and receive a good return. GM Ken Holland’s problem is the preexisting condition of long-term dough on his books: Niklas Kronwall, Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen, Justin Abdelkader, and Jimmy Howard. Bringing back the 33-year-old Vanek would only compound the problem.

more topics...

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Video- Bo Horvat Took A Puck To The Back Of His Head Last Night



Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bo+horvat

Underperforming Stars

from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,

Jamie Benn, a scoring champion in 2014-15 and 41-goal scorer last season, has 11 goals in 43 games this season. Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews, averaging 28 goals per season in his career, has seven this season.

Future Hall of Famer Joe Thornton has scored only three goals and each one has been an empty-netter.

“There are quirky things going on,”  Dallas Stars general manager Jim Nill told USA TODAY Sports. “Why are some of the best players in the game struggling right now? It’s hard to believe.”

Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar only has four goals in 39 games. Corey Perry, who netted 50 in 2010-11, only has eight goals, putting him on the lowest scoring pace of his career.

Is this is a coincidence, a World Cup hangover or just another natural changing of the guard? Young players such as Edmonton’s Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, Toronto’s Auston Matthews, Winnipeg’s Patrik Laine and Nikolaj Ehlers are all thriving this season.

Calgary Flames president Brian Burke doesn’t believe anyone should read too much into it.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Goaltending Is Not The Only Problem For The St. Louis Blues

from Benjamin Hochman of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

Fixing the Blues’ goalie situation is priority No. 1, but here’s the thing — remember when the Blues were still considered good? They still had some major issues, which persist today.

And these issues are quandaries.

Consider that the Blues have been shaky on defense. Struggling to get the puck out of their zone, to get bodies on opponents, or even, as we saw with Carl Gunnarsson against Washington, to stay upright (to be fair, it is slippery out there). Coach Ken Hitchcock continually mixes up his pairings. St. Louis must improve at defense … yet a smart move is to, effectively, make the defense worse by trading Kevin Shattenkirk, a free-agent-to-be.

Also, the Blues could use a sturdy centerman. But to get one who could truly make a difference, such as the desirable Matt Duchene from Colorado, the Blues might have to trade one of their young pieces, a piece they hoped to build around (and part of the reason they didn’t feel the need to sign David Backes long term).

read on

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

Another Loss By The Boston Bruins

Marian Hossa of the Blackhawks scored with 1:26 left in the 3rd period for a 1-0 win over the Bruins.

from Joe Haggerty of CSNNE,

The defeat continued a swirl downward for the Black and Gold over the last week, and was a second straight shutout loss on home ice for the first time in almost 15 years. The losing stretch has also kicked up the chatter that Claude Julien is in trouble as head coach of the Bruins, and the hockey club’s underperformance up and down the lineup is ultimately going to cost the NHL’s longest tenured bench boss his job.

The Ottawa Senators have passed the Bruins in the Atlantic Division, and it’s only a matter of time before the Toronto Maple Leafs move by them as well with both Toronto and Ottawa holding six games in hand on Boston. Combine all of this with the B’s having missed the playoffs in each of the previous two seasons leading into this one, and it shouldn’t be at all surprising that Julien is squarely on the coaching hot seat.

The B’s bench boss was asked about his job security after the Chicago loss, and clearly didn’t appreciate the tough, but appropriate question.

“Well, I’m not into shock-journalism,” said Julien in a prideful tone. “So I’ll stay away from that question if you don’t mind.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Videos- 1000 Points For Henrik Sedin

from Jason Botchford of the Vancouver Province,

“It’s something I will remember forever,” Henrik said, two hours after he slid a goal through Luongo’s five hole, igniting a crowd that rose to the occasion, and appropriately shook the city with a chilling ovation that was 16 years in the making.

“When I saw my teammates come onto the ice, I lost it a little bit. It was very special.

“If I retired today, I think it was the most memorable moment for me as a player.”




Two more video below regarding Henrik Sedin...

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: henrik+sedin

NHL Short Notes

Home Team in Caps
Chicago 1, BOSTON 0
BUFFALO 3, Detroit 2 (OT)
Pittsburgh 7, CAROLINA 1
Montreal 3, NEW JERSEY 1
Nashville 3, EDMONTON 2 (SO)
VANCOUVER 2, Florida 1
Canucks captain Henrik Sedin scored in the second period to become the first player in franchise history to reach the 1,000-point milestone (233-767—1,000).

* Sedin also became the fourth Swedish-born player in NHL history to register 1,000 career points, joining Mats Sundin (564-785—1,349), Daniel Alfredsson (444-713—1,157) and Nicklas Lidstrom (264-878—1,142).
* MUST SEE: Panthers goaltender and former teammate Roberto Luongo skated over to congratulate Sedin shortly after the milestone goal.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Video- Woa


Reading the comments, it may be an older video.


Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pavel+datsyuk

P.K. Subban Returns Tonight

via the Nashville Predators,

The Nashville Predators activated defenseman P.K. Subban from Injured Reserve on Friday and expect him to play tonight in Edmonton.

The 27-year-old blueliner has missed the previous 16 games with an upper-body injury. Subban had 17 points (7g-10a) in the Predators' opening 29 games before exiting with what he described as "a new injury."

Adding Subban back into the mix will be welcome addition for the Preds, who are also missing another franchise defenseman in Roman Josi (Injured Reserve; upper-body). 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: p.k.+subban

Clarke MacArthur Will Not Play This Season And Craig Anderson’s Timetable To Return

from Craig Medaglia of OttawaSenators.com,

Senators GM Pierre Dorion met with the media this morning to provide some injury updates and announced that Clarke MacArthur will not play this season.

MacArthur has been battling post-concussion symptoms for the better part of two years now and all indications up until today was that he was nearing a return to action this season. MacArtur was sidelined back in training camp during team scrimmage but was able to return to full contact practices in December.

"Clarke is devastated by this news," Dorion relayed to the media this morning. "He felt he didn't have any symptoms but I think in the long-term of this process we always said that the doctors would decide if Clarke was going to play."...

With MacArthur not an option to return this season Dorion has shifted his focus and is looking to acquire some forward depth at some point during the second half of the season. The Sens currently find themselves in second place in the Atlantic Division as they push for a return to the post-season.

"Right now the asking prices are ridiculous for rentals and for non-rentals," Dorion continued....

Some good news from this morning's media availability, it looks like Craig Anderson could return to the team later this month or in early February. Anderson took a personal leave back in December in order to be with his family while his wife Nicholle underwent cancer treatment. Dorion also expects that when Anderson's return to the team happens, it would be a permanent one.

a bit more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: clarke+macarthur, craig+anderson

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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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