Kukla's Korner

Early Lottery Standings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sean McIndoe at Sportsnet,

Road to the lottery
Here are the five teams that look like they're headed towards watching Nolan Patrick highlights and clicking refresh on draft lottery simulations.

5. Toronto Maple Leafs (1-1-3, even) – With four losses in five games, they were a leading contender for an even higher spot. But since when have this year's Leafs managed to hold a lead?

4. Carolina Hurricanes (1-2-2, -4) – They've only won one game. And that was against the Flames, so it barely counts.

3. Calgary Flames (1-4-1, -8) – All kidding aside, they still feel like a team that will figure it out sooner than later. But this week's schedule, which includes back-to-back road games against the Blackhawks and Blues, will be a tough test.

2. Buffalo Sabres (1-2-1, -1) – Two close losses nudge them down a spot, and the coach is maybe kind of calling out one of the team's best young players. But at least no key pieces got hurt this week.

1. Arizona Coyotes (1-4-0, -7) – They've lost starting goaltender Mike Smith to a lower body injury that's left him week-to-week....

more topics...

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Weekend Numbers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Recapping an eventful weekend including Perron's hat trick, Nyquist, Parise, Voracek, Bobrovsky and more in Scott Cullen's Statistically Speaking.


David Perron - The Blues winger busted out with three goals and an assist in Saturday's 6-4 win at Calgary. They were Perron's first points after he was held scoreless through the first five games of the season. Skating on a line with Jaden Schwartz at centre and Vladimir Tarasenko on the right side, Perron registered six shots on goal in the game, the fourth time since the start of last season that he had at least six shots on goal in a game.

Gustav Nyquist - The speedy Detroit winger scored a goal and added an assist in Friday's 5-3 win against Nashville, then buried a pair of goals in Saturday's 3-0 win against San Jose. He has seven points (3 G, 4 A) in six games.

Zach Parise - Minnesota's veteran winger had a pair of goals, with 15 shot attempts (10 SOG), in Sunday's 6-3 loss at the Islanders. He has five points (2 G, 3 A) in the past five games.



Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin - Dallas' difference-makers were on the ice for all three goals against in Saturday's 3-0 loss to Columbus.

Sean Monahan and Johnny Gaudreau - Calgary's first liners had the same fate, on the ice for zero goals for and three against at evens, in Saturday's 6-4 loss to St. Louis.

continued at TSN....

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Good Show Winnipeg

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Gary Lawless of TSN,

“A priest, a rabbi and a magician walk into a bar … yada, yada, yada … and it was too sunny in Winnipeg,” goes no punchline ever. But there we were on Sunday waiting two hours for the sun to slide a little lower in the sky so an outdoor hockey game could be played in a football stadium before more than 33,000 in attendance.

This 2016 Heritage Classic in Winnipeg was a week-long celebration of pro hockey on the Prairies culminating with Sunday’s two-hour delayed Edmonton Oilers 3-0 win over the Winnipeg Jets.

The city, the stadium, the fans and even the weather all cooperated to give Winnipeg a successful star turn on the NHL’s stage. The Jets, however, lost their way somewhere between the dressing room and the ice after the opening period and served up a flop for the middle frame allowing three unanswered goals and giving the Oilers their fifth win in six tries this season.

Here are some moments, thoughts and quotes from a memorable week:

• The first Heritage Classic played in Edmonton in 2003 featured a puck drop temperature of -20 C. The NHL’s 19th outdoor game saw an opening faceoff temperature of 11 C in Winnipeg. The day dawned with rain and mist but cloud cover broke around noon and by game time there was such a glare at ice level the visibility conditions were deemed unsafe and the game was delayed.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Winnipeg Jets, | KK Hockey | Permalink

This Week With The Wings

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

Here are five things to watch this week:

Larkin looking to break through

After six games, nobody expected Dylan Larkin to have more fights (one) than goals (none). But Larkin is second on the team with 17 shots and is playing hard and generating chances. The transition to center, with added defensive responsibility, was difficult. He has moved back to the wing the past two games.

Others also are looking to break through; one line (Gustav Nyquist-Darren Helm-Thomas Vanek) is supplying most of the offense. Henrik Zetterberg, back at center the past two games, has no goals, three assists and just seven shots. Tomas Tatar has one goal and one assist but has created chances and leads the team with 18 shots.

Sproul's impact

Rookie defenseman Ryan Sproul made a strong impression in his first two games, contributing offensively (two assists, seven shots) and playing well defensively.

The defense played well enough over the weekend that there likely won't be a change for Tuesday (Xavier Ouellet was the lone healthy scratch). Can Sproul secure a regular spot in the lineup, even when Niklas Kronwall returns from his knee issue? The 6-4 Sproul's big right shot is an asset, especially on the power play.


Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

NHL Short Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Home Team in Caps
Edmonton 3, WINNIPEG 0
NY ISLANDERS 6, Minnesota 3
NY RANGERS 3, Arizona 2
ANAHEIM 4, Vancouver 2
Cam Talbot stopped all 31 shots he faced to lead the Oilers past the Jets in front of a sellout crowd of 33,240 at the 2016 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic at Investors Group Field in Winnipeg. 

* The Oilers improved to 5-1-0 this season to move into first place in the NHL’s overall standings. Via Elias, Edmonton has won five of its first six games of a season for the first time since 1985-86, when the club also started 5-1-0.
* Talbot recorded the third shutout in the NHL’s 19 regular-season outdoor games to date. The others: by Calgary’s Miikka Kiprusoff in the 2011 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classicat McMahon Stadium (39 SV vs. MTL) and Anaheim’s Jonas Hiller in the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series at Dodger Stadium (36 SV at LAK).
* Talbot, who became a first-time father with the birth of twins Landon Thomas andSloane Colleen on Wednesday, has started all six games for the Oilers this season (5-1-0, 2.75 GAA, .919 SV%, 1 SO). He now has 12 career shutouts (119 GP), including four with Edmonton (62 GP).

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The overnight report: On Sproul stepping up, the Canes, fantasy hockey and anthem-painting

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Of Red Wings-related note this morning:

1. As the Detroit News's Gregg Krupa notes via story-within-a-story format, Ryan Sproul has almost seamlessly fit into the Red Wings' lineup since stepping in at both even strength and on the power play Friday evening, and that's good news for the Red Wings:

It was a big play, because it increased the Red Wings lead over the Sharks to two. But if it heralds how Ryan Sproul plays, the impact could be far more significant. Amid a difficult second period Saturday, when the opposition set upon Jimmy Howard, Sproul made a lightening-quick recovery from a tight spot for a defenseman.

Having rushed the net, shot on goal and failed to score, he was deep in the zone when Sharks forward Matt Nieto gained control of the rebound and suddenly was on his way, with teammates. In a blink, so was Sproul.

From behind, he gained on Nieto and crashed his 6-foot-4, 205-pound frame into him. The puck was loose. Sproul’s quick stick attended to both the puck and an instantaneous, highly receivable pass to Gustav Nyquist, who scored his second goal of the night.

The 23-year-old defenseman had his second point in the NHL, assists in consecutive games and Nyquist’s appreciation.

“Yeah, real nice,” Nyquist said. “Obviously he was in deep there and he was coming back and he made a good play with his stick, and a nice little drop pass to me.”

Krupa continues, and he, MLive's Ansar Khan and the Free Press's Helene St. James all penned off-day notebooks. The Wings will return to practice this morning, preparing for another stretch of 4 games played over the course of 6 nights this upcoming week.

2. Tuesday's opponent, the Carolina Hurricanes, will be wrapping up a 6-game road trip, and the Raleigh News & Observer's Chip Alexander reports that the Canes will be playing desperate after dropping a 6-3 decision to the Flyers on Saturday:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Prospect news: Givani Smith 1+1; Tip-a-Griffin event takes place Tuesday

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Of prospect-related note:

In the Swedish J20 league, Mattias Elfstrom was held off the scoresheet in the Malmo Redhawks' 3-2 loss to Frolunda;

In the QMJHL, Adam Marsh's Val-d'Or Foreurs defeated Halifax 4-2;

In the OHL, Givani Smith scored a goal and added an assist in the Guelph Storm's 5-4 OT loss to Oshawa. You can watch highlights of the game here (Smith scores the 3-0 goal). Smith now has 5 goals, 6 assists and 11 points registered over the course of 10 games played;

And in the AHL, the Grand Rapids Griffins' "Tip-a-Griffin" event takes place at Ucello's locations across Grand Rapids on Tuesday, October 25th:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Early Season Rookie Of The Year

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

It is still early in the season but we have a frontrunner for the Calder Trophy.  It is no surprise that first overall pick in 2016, Auston Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leafs is the early Calder Trophy leader.  Matthews has 5 goals and 8 points.  This leaves him one goal and one point behind the NHL lead.

Matthews is off to an outstanding start to his career.  If he can keep this up he will go down as one of the all-time greats in NHL history.  It is too early to make such a prediction.  We will have to wait and see how Matthews reacts to adversity when it comes in his NHL career, but so far he looks great.  He is the Calder Trophy leader at this early point in the season.

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

Video- Dave Strader On Hockey Fights Canncer

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Dave Strader statement a little over a moth ago:

"With the start of the NHL season almost upon us, I wanted to share an update on my condition with everyone who has been kind enough to reach out over the past several months. In early June 2016, a tumor was found in my bile duct. I was diagnosed with cholangiocarcinoma, a fairly rare and aggressive form of cancer.

"There is no cure for my cancer. However, at this point in time, it is treatable. With advancements in all areas of cancer treatments evolving so quickly, I'm fighting every day and doing everything the doctors tell me. The Stars' organization, the fans and the entire NHL family have been so supportive. It has meant so much to me, my wife Colleen and our entire family to know that we are not in this fight alone. I will work as many games as my condition and my treatments allow. Thank you again for all your love and support."


Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dave+strader

Detroit’s Improved Offense

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

Gustav Nyquist looks like he is determined to amend for last season, when he reached just 17 goals, three of them in the final 30 games. He demonstrated his skill-set on both goals he scored during Saturday’s 3-0 victory over San Jose, which grew the winning streak to four headed into Tuesday’s game against Carolina. Sunday was a day off.

Wings coach Jeff Blashill said after the Sharks game that going back to the first couple of preseason games, Nyquist “wasn't great and then he really, really picked it up. He’s been excellent ever since. His compete level has been real high. Early in the season he wasn't scoring but he was getting points, and now he's been able to find the back of the net.

“When you score, it breeds confidence for sure, so great for him. But if anything, it just values how much work he has put in.”...

The surging offense also reflects well on July 1 addition Thomas Vanek (seven points), as well as Darren Helm (four goals); their line with Nyquist had instant chemistry. Mike Green (three goals, seven points) leads a defense where six of seven players have at least one point.

more on the Wings offense...

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

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