Kukla's Korner

(Early) Morning news: On Dylan Larkin, the World Junior Summer Showcase and Jake Paterson’s new team

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Of Red Wings-related note early on a Thursday morning:

1. DetroitRedWings.com's Dana Wakiji filed an article from the Larkin Hockey School in Waterford, MI:

Although Dylan Larkin is turning 21 this weekend, it wasn't that long ago that he was a little boy skating at Lakeland Ice Arena in Waterford.

So it was a natural fit when Brad Martin, who runs the Lakeland Hockey Association and Lakeland Ice Arena, asked Larkin and his brother, Colin, and his cousins, Adam and Ryan, if they were interested in doing a hockey camp.

All four Larkin boys eagerly agreed to do it and the Larkin Hockey School was born.

"A lot of us that are doing this camp grew up right in this rink and it is cool to come back and give back to these kids that are hopefully going to follow in our footsteps," Larkin said following an afternoon session. "We all have moved on through the hockey ranks and all of us are playing (or have played) college hockey. I hope we're setting a good example and we're having fun with the kids. It's been a good response in both years doing it so it's a lot of fun for us."

Wakiji continues, and DetroitRedWings.com's Arthur J. Regner recorded a 12-minute podcast with Larkin as well:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

NHL Stars Should Be More Involved With The CBA

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ken Campbell of The Hockey News,

The best players in the NHL have historically sat on the sidelines during collective bargaining, but it's time for the likes of Crosby and McDavid to get involved.

So Connor McDavid is “really upset” about NHL players not participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics. In that case, McDavid might want to take a number and get in line because there are a lot of star players who feel the same way. Sidney Crosby doesn’t like it, either. But the NHL is not in the business of catering to their star players, particularly when they feel it doesn’t serve their business interests very well.

Some star players, particularly those of the Russian variety, have talked about going rogue and playing in the Pyeongchang tournament anyway. So make no mistake, the star players who have the most to lose by not playing in the Olympics are not a happy bunch.

And that’s all well and good, but now is the time for those same players to use their clout to shame the NHL into doing the right thing in 2022 and their own Players’ Association into enshrining it into the next collective bargaining agreement. 

continued

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Krupa’s top 12 Wings prospects

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Detroit News's Gregg Krupa compiled a listing of the Red Wings' top twelve prospects:

So far, the Red Wings have used none of their 20 draft picks from 2017 and 2018 to buff up a trade package, and the state of their depth chart is a reason why.

Their intent is stocking young talent.

For prospects, they are thin in defensemen and goalies.

The Wings have gotten bigger throughout their system, but large forwards are still desired, too.

And they could use some rough-and-tough guys who can eventually play quality minutes in the NHL.

Considering their top five defensive prospects, acquiring free agent Trevor Daley is unlikely to block the path of anyone young and effective, anytime soon. The pool of immediately available apprentices is insufficient.

At forward, the Red Wings are deeper, and Evgeny Svechnikov may emerge as a star.

At goalie, two tall men are the top prospects.

Krupa continues, and there's a photo gallery accompanying the story...

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A lengthy remembrance of Gordie Howe

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Deadspin's "The Stacks" re-posted a very lengthy article in which Inside Sports' Mordecai Richler profiled a then-still-among-us Gordie Howe:

Gordie Howe’s amazing career is festooned with records, illuminated by anecdote. Looked at properly, within the third-grade repeater there was a hockey pedagogue longing to leap out.

Item: In 1963, when the traditionally stylish but corner-shy Montreal Canadiens brought up a young behemoth from the minors to police the traffic, he had the audacity to go into a corner with Mr. Elbows. He yanked off his gloves, foolishly threatening to mix it up with Howe.

“In this league, son,” Howe cautioned him, “we don’t really fight. All we do is tug at each other’s sweaters.”

“Certainly, Mr. Howe,” the rookie agreed.

But no sooner did he drop his fists than the old educator creamed him.

Toe Blake, another Canadien who played against Howe, once said, “He was primarily a defensive player when he started, and he’d take your ankles off if you stood in front of the net.”

Richler continues...

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The Boston Bruins Make The Ryan Spooner Signing Official

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

BOSTON - Boston Bruins General Manager Don Sweeney announced today, July 26, that the team has signed forward Ryan Spooner to a one-year contract worth $2,825,000.

"We are pleased with the process and are happy to have Ryan's contract resolved. His agent, Murray Kuntz, and Ryan were both very professional, and our group was well prepared as they had worked very diligently prior to arriving at a settlement point," said Sweeney. "We know Ryan has the offensive skills to be an impactful player, especially while on the power play. We expect Ryan to continue to take the necessary steps with his development to be an even more complete, two-way player."

Spooner, 25, skated in 78 games with the Bruins in 2016-17, recording 11 goals and 28 assists for 39 points. His 18 power play points were good for fourth on the team. Spooner also skated in four playoff games for Boston against the Senators, logging two assists. He established career highs in all offensive categories during the 2015-16 season, tallying 13 goals and 36 assists for 49 points in 80 games. In his five-year NHL career, the 5-foot-10, 184-pound forward has played in 214 games, compiling 32 goals and 85 assists for 117 points.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+spooner

Afternoon Line- Connor McDavid On Not Being Able To Participate In The Olympics

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“I’m really upset about it.

“You want to be able to represent your country on the highest stage, and the Olympics is obviously the highest stage possible. To know that you might not be able to represent your country at the Olympics for another four years for sure. … Even if you’re able to in four years, it’s disappointing.”

-Connor McDavid via Luke Fox of Sportsnet.

Filed in: NHL Talk, Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: connor+mcdavid

Arizona Coyotes Name Two Assistant Coaches

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - Arizona Coyotes President of Hockey Operations and General Manager John Chayka announced today that the Coyotes have signed John MacLean and Scott Allen to multi-year contracts to serve as assistant coaches on Head Coach Rick Tocchet's staff. As per club policy, terms of the contracts were not disclosed. MacLean and Allen will work alongside Goaltending Coach Jon Elkin and Video Coach Steve Peters.

"We are very pleased to have John and Scott join the Coyotes organization," said Chayka. "Both individuals bring a wealth of hockey knowledge and coaching experience to our team and we are confident that they will be great additions to Head Coach Rick Tocchet's staff."
 

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

They Were Just Storylines

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sean McIndoe at Sportsnet,

• Wait for Duchene deal continues
• What will Vegas do with D-man surplus?
• Still no bites for Jagr, Iginla, Doan

The writers in charge of the NHL’s off-season script are struggling.

They spent the last year opening up all sorts of interesting storylines and plot holes, with lots of fun ways they could go. But now the summer is here, the credits are about to roll, and there are still all sorts of loose ends to tie up.

They’ve wrapped up a few. The Dallas Stars finally got that goalie they’ve been hunting for years, the touching Kevin Shattenkirk homecoming played out pretty much like we all expected, and the Connor McDavid contract plotline came together nicely. Some of it feels kind of derivative – haven’t we seen this Blackhawks roster already? – but for the most part it’s been fine.

continued

Heck, I recall many of the media we depend on telling us the off-season was going to be crazy, oops!

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

All Johnny Gaudreau

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Isaac of the Courier-Post,

DI: What was your biggest takeaway this season with the Flames?

JG: Probably the resiliency of our team. We had a tough start this season. I think we were like 5-10. Coming around Thanksgiving we were out of a playoff spot. The statistics of when you’re out of a playoff position at Thanksgiving is really high (to miss the playoffs). It’s difficult to fight your way into a playoff spot, but our team did it. We had a great second half of the season and we played some good hockey in the playoffs. Unfortunately we got swept, but I think we could have won a game or two there and the series could have been a little different. It’s a learning experience for us. We have a really young team, a lot of good, young leaders on our team and some older leaders that us young guys get to learn from. We’re pretty fortunate with the group we have in Calgary. We had some pretty big signings this offseason (including Union College star Spencer Foo and trading for defenseman Travis Hamonic and goalies Mike Smith and Eddie Lack). I’m really looking forward to next season, too.

DI: I bet your phone was blowing up recently after your interview on 94.1 WIP. They asked you about coming to the Flyers someday and you said it would be great. Did that small spark set off your Twitter account?

JG: Yeah, the way the question was asked I said, “It would be sweet to play in your hometown.” I think if you ask any player in the NHL if they’d like to play in their hometown at some point they’d all say it would be pretty sweet. You’ve got friends, you’ve got family, you’ve got kids you went to school with, you’ve got teachers, you name it. You’ve got people that will be supporting you. The people support me down here, like it’s crazy down here. I’m just really fortunate they follow me up in Calgary. I love Calgary, don’t me wrong. It’s a great city and they’re so passionate about our team. It’s a real hockey city. I really enjoy it up there, don’t get me wrong, but I think if you ask any player if he wants to play in his hometown they’d say it would be pretty cool to do that. I’ve still got five more years on my contract and who knows…if we’re playing well up here in Calgary I could end up staying another four or five years there because I love the city so much. It’s tough to have all those articles come out when it’s something so small, but that’s the way it goes sometimes.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ohnny+gaudreau

Morning news: On a charitable endeavor, Jordan Sambrook, Walleye try-outs and Tweets of note

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Of Red Wings-related note this morning:

1. Danny DeKeyser has been taking part in the Red Wings' Street Hockey Summer Tour, and the Free Press's Brandon Folsom reports that DeKeyser spent Tuesday taking part in a charity hockey camp:

While most Detroit Red Wings were out of town Tuesday, defenseman Danny DeKeyser was playing street hockey at Echo Grove Camp near Oxford.

DeKeyser teamed up with the Salvation Army of Metroit Detroit to spend the afternoon with 200 campers to teach them how to shoot and pass.

"This was an opportunity the kids will probably never get anywhere else," organizer Erin Eddy said. "Most of these kids cannot afford to go to hockey games or meet a player, so it's an invaluable experience for them. Some of their faces lit up and were so excited to see him. A few were screaming and wanted to hug him. They were excited to see and interact with somebody who is a popular, influential person in Detroit."

The opportunity was organized by STRIVE Hockey, a floor hockey program started in 2009 that teaches fundamentals, team building and sportsmanship to children ages 8-12 at different community centers around the metro area. STRIVE stands for "Student Training for Integrity, Vitality and Education."

2. MLive's Brendan Savage posted a profile of Wings prospect and Erie Otters defenseman Jordan Sambrook, whose Ontario Hockey League team won the OHL title but fell short of a Memorial Cup win:

Continue Reading »

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