Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Entries with the tag: mikhail grigorenko

Praising Nathan MacKinnon as the ‘Avalanche’s most important player’

ESPN's Katie Strang suggests that Nathan MacKinnon is the Colorado Avalanche's "Most Important Player":

The Halifax, Nova Scotia, native had a bit of a sophomore slump last season, though he was sidelined for significant time with a foot injury and played only 64 games for the Avs, finishing with 14 goals and 28 points. Part of that dip in production was indicative of the team’s struggles as a whole, as the Avs regressed and missed the playoffs. And let’s not forget that MacKinnon was plagued by an unsightly 6.33 percent shooting percentage, which seems like a fluke more than anything. The good news is he was still creating chances, finishing fifth overall in shots per 60 minutes (11.01) among those who played more than 200 minutes, according to hockeyanalysis.com.

With Mackinnon set to enter training camp healthy, his production will be essential this season, especially given the departure of two-way center Ryan O'Reilly. Though MacKinnon has played primarily on the wing since joining the Avs, center is his natural position, so he could provide flexibility for Colorado depending on how things shake out with the rest of their lineup.

Matt Duchene figures to slot in as the No. 1 center, with the Avs hopeful that newcomers Carl Soderberg and Mikhail Grigorenko can fill important roles down the middle as well. The Avs already know they can count on last season’s leading scorer, veteran winger Jarome Iginla, for production (he had 29 goals and 59 points) and for Gabriel Landeskog to be a key contributor.

Continued

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: carl+soderberg, colorado+avalanche, gabriel+landeskog, jarome+iginla, matt+duchene, mikhail+grigorenko, nathan+mackinnon, ryan+o'reilly

Mikhail Grigorenko Wants A One-Way Contract

from Bill Hoppe at Buffalo Hockey Beat,

General manager Tim Murray knows 21-year-old center Mikhail Grigorenkois frustrated the Sabres are offering a two-way contract. The restricted free agent dislikes the deal so much he’s reportedly fielding offers from the KHL, a league in his native Russia.

“I hear rumors,” Murray said Thursday during a news conference inside the First Niagara Center to discuss next week’s NHL Draft.

Clearly, the Sabres and Grigorenko’s camp have vastly different opinions of the youngster, the No. 12 pick in 2012.

“We feel he needs time in the minors, whether that’s 10 games, a half a year, whatever it is,” Murray said. “That will depend on what kind of summer he has.”

Grigorenko, who has six goals and 14 points in 68 NHL games, wants a one-way deal.

“They tell me he’s ready to play,” Murray said. “I don’t know why they’d be afraid of a two-way contract. I’m baffled, actually.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikhail+grigorenko

Mikhail Grigorenko Not Living Up To His Potential

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

As far as Ted Nolan is concerned, it seems that Mikhail Grigorenko is running out of chances to make any sort of impression to impact his future with the Buffalo Sabres.

Grigorenko was called up from Rochester Thursday, installed as Buffalo’s No. 2 center for Friday’s loss in Ottawa and was back in the AHL on Saturday.

After Monday’s practice in HarborCenter, the coach made it clear why.

“I didn’t like his play,” Nolan said bluntly. “For him to play at this level, especially with that much skill, he has to bring a little bit more than what he had. You don’t really want to sit back and hope for things to work. You’ve got to make them work like everybody else. I just felt his play on certain parts was very lackadaisical. Didn’t have any energy or urgency in his game whatsoever.”

While Grigorenko is still only 20 years old, his ability to show something at the NHL level in the final quarter of the season looms large for a variety of reasons.

This season marks the end of Grigorenko’s entry-level contract, and it will be interesting to see what tact the Sabres take with him going forward. The team could simply extend him his qualifying offer as a restricted free agent (roughly $975,000) and not negotiate a higher amount, or try to package Grigorenko in a trade.

continued

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikhail+grigorenko

A New Attitude For Mikhail Grigorenko

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

It seems crazy to think of this as a make-or-break season for Mikhail Grigorenko. After all, he’s just 20 years old and has played only 43 NHL games. But he’s coming up on the final year of his entry-level contract and decisions need to be made, both by Grigorenko and the Buffalo Sabres.

Large portions of Grigorenko’s first two seasons have been wasted. Can he build his game this year in the AHL or, perhaps in Buffalo? Or is this the last year before he looks at some money and maybe the KHL in Russia? The first step to a change this year was an attitude adjustment.

“From past experiences, I kind of realized it was probably no one’s fault but mine I didn’t stay in the NHL,” Grigorenko said prior to the team’s development camp scrimmage Tuesday night before an announced crowd of 8,725 in First Niagara Center. “If I want to play in the best league in the world, it’s just on me. No one’s going to just let me play because I was drafted first round. I just need to go out there and be the best.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikhail+grigorenko

Mikhail Grigorenko Refusing To Report To Quebec Remparts

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

The Mikhail Grigorenko saga may be taking a fresh, bizarre twist as the 19-year-old is refusing to report to the Quebec Remparts of the Quebec Major Junior League. Agent Jay Grossman confirmed to The Buffalo News via email that Grigorenko will not report but did not comment on my inquiries about what's next, including a possible look at the KHL.

The reports first came from Kathleen Lavoie of La Presse, who covers the Remparts for La Presse.

Grigorenko, remember, is  not eligible to go to Rochester -- which is probably the best spot for him at this point. Players with eligibility left in a Canadian junior circuit cannot be sent to the AHL, which can put 19-year-olds like Grigorenko in limbo. There's no such agreement with the United States Hockey League, which is why an 18-year-old Zemgus Girgensons could play all last season with the Amerks.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikhail+grigorenko

Feed

Most Recent Blog Posts