Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Stephen Brunt of the Globe and Mail,
A conspiracy theorist, presented with the NHL’s struggles to find an audience, with the pro-fighting sentiments that came out of the last general managers meetings, with a February in which fighting was way up and a March in which it will be the same, would put it all together and deduce there must be some master plan at work — that the league’s brain trust has actively or tacitly amped up the violence in a desperate attempt to get face time.
Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt: probably not.
But still, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and company have a decision to make right now. They’ve reached a watershed point.
Holmstrom & Bertuzzi trying to perfect the double screen tonight.
Here is USA TODAY hockey writer Kevin Allen’s list of top American-born and American trained NHL players:
5. Pat LaFontaine (Hall of fame center): He scored 40 or more goals seven times in his career, with a high of 54 for the New York Islanders in 1989-90. His career was cut short by post-concussion syndrome.
read on for the Top 4…
from Pierre Lebrun of the CP via Slam,
It’s time to look at the issue of fighting in the NHL, says the league’s disciplinarian.
“I think it’s time to ask the question,” Colin Campbell told The Canadian Press on Thursday. “I think you have to ask the question because of what’s happening out there. It’s incumbent on me, because of my position, to ask the question.”
All the fuss during the trade deadline about getting Sidney Crosby some protection from the NHL’s “thugs”, you’d never imagine that the Upper Deck hockey collectibles company would conceive this action figure for their newest collection.
Nice shoulders. Is it Crosby or the Incredible Hulk? Makes me wonder why the Penguins bothered picking up Georges Laraque...
from Damien Cox at ESPN,
So nobody, it’s fair to say, feels bad just yet for the Canadiens. If another 30 years go by, well, then we’ll see about sympathy.
But here’s what’s interesting.
This season has been such a trying experience for the Canadiens, with such a wide variety of on-ice and off-ice problems, that, lo and behold, this franchise just doesn’t feel that special any more.
Combined with the long wait since the last Cup, it seems ordinary, really.
More just like any number of other teams in the rapidly changing culture of a league in which teams like Carolina, Tampa Bay, Dallas and Colorado—teams that weren’t even in existence when Patrick Roy led the Habs to the ‘86 Cup—have made it to the mountaintop.
A year and a half ago equipment manufacturer Eagle Hockey launched an equipment design contest, spurring an avalanche of concept pad designs from goalies around the world.
Chris Le submitted 4 designs following a similar theme. The designs were titled Eagle Head, Eagle Wings, Eagle Talons, and my personal favorite Eagle Phoenix….
After a lengthy selection process, Chris was selected as the winner and flown to the Eagle hockey factory in London, Ontario for a tour of the facilities, and to meet the staff.
read on... great story…
from Jennifer Raimondi at NHL.com,
The dynamics of the penalty shot have come a long way since the inception of the rule.
“I believe the penalty shot is going to be very spectacular,” legendary Toronto Maple Leafs General Manager Conn Smythe said in October, 1934.
Later that year, when Montreal Canadiens star Armand Mondou became the first player to take a penalty shot, Mondou stood in a circle 38 feet in front of the goal and was stopped by legendary Maple Leafs goaltender George Hainsworth. No fakes, no ‘spin-a-rama,’ just a standing-still shot from the circle.
In today’s NHL, there is no telling when the next dazzling shootout move will be displayed. Smythe’s words, spoken more than 70 years ago, were prophetic, indeed.
read on... great article with video and stats…
from the Philadelphia Flyers,
Flyers forward Todd Fedoruk returned to the Philadelphia area following his overnight stay at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Manhattan. Fedoruk left Wednesday night’s Flyers-Rangers game after a fight with Colton Orr.
Below is a brief Q and A with Fedoruk regarding his condition.
Q: Did the fight you have earlier this year when you were playing with Anaheim (which resulted in having plates put in your face) make you tentative in your fighting since then?
Fedoruk: “Very much so. I think anybody would be tentative with an injury like that. It is just a matter of time until I get back to my style. I am not really worried about it, but being tentative, you have to put yourself out there and when you change your style a little bit you leave yourself vulnerable and that’s what happened to me last night. I am not worried about it. I will get back on track. I have had worse things done to me than this.”
added 4:26pm, What the Flyers thought of the fight…from the Philadelphia Flyers,
The skill players appreciate what guys like Fedoruk and Orr do night in and night out.
“It’s the toughest job in sports,” said Knuble. “You can’t compare it to boxing or what a boxer does, these guys are out there bare-knuckling. Guys are getting bigger and stronger. It’s dangerous.”
from Terry Frei at ESPN,
In the NHL, it isn’t only about records and record-breaking moments.
It is about the ineffable concept of “class,” a term that always triggers a few e-mail responses from English literature majors who point out that it is a vanilla and misused term. And I always tell them I prefer that they move on to combat the misuse of “hopefully,” “irregardless,” “110 percent,” or “could care less.”
Because don’t we know what “class” is?
It certainly isn’t ignoring a milestone because the player is wearing the “wrong” sweater.
It also involves what often seems to be NHL franchises’ reluctance to mandate and embrace the concept that the game, the sport and the league itself all should be “sold” to a generally savvy fan base that cares about more than the guys on the home-team roster.
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 email@example.com