Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: brian leetch
From NHL.com's Brian Compton:
The United States of America is celebrating its 240th birthday Monday. Citizens will spend the day celebrating their freedom with friends and family.
Keeping in the holiday spirit, NHL.com looks at the top 10 American NHL players of all-time:
1. Mike Modano, C -- Arguably the best U.S.-born player in the NHL history, Modano spent two decades with the Minnesota North Stars/Dallas Stars franchise and led it to the Stanley Cup in 1999. Modano played 1,499 regular-season games, and his 561 goals and 1,374 points are more than any player born in the U.S. He also had 58 goals and 146 points in 176 Stanley Cup Playoffs games. Modano was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2014.
2. Brian Leetch, D -- Leetch broke into the NHL with the Rangers late in the 1987-88 season and won the Calder Trophy in 1988-89 with 23 goals and 48 assists in 68 games. He won the Conn Smythe Trophy and helped the Rangers win their first Stanley Cup championship in 54 years in 1994 and remained in New York for another 10 seasons. Leetch finished his career with stops with the Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins. In 1,205 regular-season games he had 247 goals and 781 assists. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009.
from Katie Strang of ESPN,
The Rangers’ sturdy back end was a huge component in their playoff success last spring, when they made a run to the Stanley Cup finals against the Los Angeles Kings. Anton Stralman signed with Tampa Bay in free agency, but Leetch would like to see much of that defensive corps remain intact.
Priority No. 1, of course, is signing Staal to a new extension (his agent, Paul Krepelka, told ESPN.com via email that “all quiet on that front right now”). Though Staal has been hampered by a string of serious injuries in recent years, he returned to form with a strong performance in the 2014 playoffs.
“I think it’s really important to have that group of guys back there. I add Girardi in the mix as well, just the stability and familiarity, and the personalities. They're very good teammates in locker room, good people, and they have that continuity, plus the ability to perform on the ice in front of Henrik Lundqvist,” Leetch said.
“My fingers are always crossed that Marc can stay healthy because he’s on the verge of getting to that next level. Obviously, that’s my hope for him and I think he’s an elite player with the ability to be a top D in the league if he can continue to play and get those reps.”
more including comments from Leetch on working for the NHL disciplinary department...
added 2:05pm, from NHL.com,
Hockey Hall of Famer Brian Leetch and former Philadelphia Flyers scout Patrick Burke have joined the National Hockey League's Department of Player Safety, NHL Senior Vice President Player Safety and Hockey Operations Brendan Shanahan announced today.
Leetch will fill the position of Manager of Player Safety recently vacated by Rob Blake, who last month was named assistant general manager of the Los Angeles Kings. Burke will serve in the newly-created position of Director of Player Safety.
from Joe Brescia of Slap Shot,
Q. What players do you enjoy watching?
A. Plenty. Ovechkin, Parise, Gaborik, Crosby, Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Green, Del Zotto, Keith, Seabrook and Lidstrom. The forwards all compete at a high level and have the ability to play well in every zone. For every game, the other teams’ goal is to not allow these players to beat them. The defensemen all move the puck well, are great skaters, anticipate and support the play and play a lot of minutes.
Q. How do you think John Tortorella is doing as the Rangers’ coach?
A. I think Torts has been great. He was an assistant while I was there and actually was head coach for a few games. I liked his direct approach. His style of play is fun for most players. I loved playing his style, pressuring the puck and not allowing any space to the opposition. You have to be in great shape but it also eliminates standing flat-footed, trying to read and react. It’s more initiate and react.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
In the post-Bobby Orr Era, we have 12 all-time defensemen: Leetch, Stevens, MacInnis, Denis Potvin, Larry Robinson, Ray Bourque, Nicklas Lidstrom, Chris Chelios, Scott Niedermayer, Paul Coffey, Borje Salming and Rob Blake.
Our first-team defense features Potvin, Robinson, Bourque, Stevens, Lidstrom and Leetch. Our second team includes Chelios, Coffey, Niedermayer, Salming, MacInnis and Blake.
read on for more on Leetch on HHOF announcement day…
from Craig Stancher of ColoradoAvalanche.com,
On Thursday, four pioneers of American hockey will be recognized by the Colorado Avalanche before the club drops the puck against the Boston Bruins.
Cammi Granato, Brett Hull, Brian Leetch and Mike Richter will be honored by the Avs prior to faceoff as part of the team’s opening night festivities. The following night, the four will be enshrined into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame as the Class of 2008 in a ceremony on the campus of the University of Denver.
Cammi Granato, Brett Hull, Brian Leetch and Mike Richter will be enshrined into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame as the Class of 2008 it was announced today by USA Hockey.
The quartet will be formally inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame in Denver at an induction dinner set for 7 p.m. (MT) on Friday, Oct. 10, at Magness Arena on the campus of the University of Denver. The following evening—Sat., Oct. 11—the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Game will take place in the same venue, when the University of Denver men’s ice hockey team takes on the University of Notre Dame at 7:07 p.m.
from Jeff Z. Klein and Lew Serviss of the New York Times,
Leetch, whose Rangers No. 2 jersey was retired to the rafters of Madison Square Garden in January, has watched the world of the defenseman change considerably from the one he knew for all but the last of his 18 seasons in the N.H.L. His final season was the first played under rules intended to eliminate obstruction and encourage offense.
Under the anti-obstruction rules, backchecking forwards can no longer slow down a forechecker after the puck is fired into the zone. As a result, when a defenseman skates back to retrieve the puck, the opposition is close behind. “You were hit a lot more,” Leetch said.
Speed, always important, is even more vital now. The ability to turn quickly from skating backward to forward “and go back and get that puck and make a play quicker is a distinct advantage now,” he said.
from Game On,
In typical New York Rangers fashion, Brian Leetch’s jersey retirement ceremony was a fantastic event at The Garden on Thursday.
Check out the highlights right here, including Mark Messier and Brian Leetch’s speeches and No .2 taking its rightful place in the rafters.
continue on to the videos…
from the New York Times,
Leetch will get the credit he deserved Thursday night when the Rangers raise his No. 2 sweater to the rafters at Madison Square Garden.
“It’s important for people to recognize how great he was,” said Leetch’s longtime teammate, goaltender Mike Richter. “But it’s also important for him to recognize how much he meant to his teammates, to this city, to his sport. He’s one of the best that’s ever played his position, for sure.”
Leetch, perhaps the best American-born player, came to the Rangers fresh from the United States Olympic team in February 1988. He was 19.
The Rangers have set up a tribute page on Leetch, check it out for videos, stories, stats, etc…..
added 12:53pm, from Stan Fischler at Game On,
After scanning the morning papers today, the first thought that came to The Maven’s mind was that everything that could be said about Brian Leetch HAD been said.
The second thought—without coffee, mind you—was that NOT everything has been said.
So, here are a few of my personal reactions to Brian’s fabulous—and I rarely use that term—night at The Garden.