Kukla's Korner

23 Intently Staring Goalies

Quick can’t afford to dwell on Saturday night’s game

"If you keep thinking about the last goal. you'll soon be thinking about the next, last goal."

Good advice if you're playing goal. You spend your time thinking about that last goal, and you won't see the next one coming. That extrapolates to playoff games--if you spend your energy thinking about the previous game, you won't have the energy to play well. If you're grumbling to yourself in the next game, you're not paying attention to the play. The puck goes in, and now you have more to dwell on. That's how games can go hyperbolic in a very short time.

Jonathan Quick has to learn to let it go, especially if it's something he can't do anything about. This has been an issue, and it popped up again after Saturday night's game. He was lucky that the " Abuse of an Official" call (Rule 39.5) didn't end up with either a fine or a suspension.  However, Quick does deserve a visit from Ron Hextall's "Goalie Stick of Loving Correction" * and get a little sense put back in his head. Hextall, if anyone who played goal at the NHL level, can tell Quick what happens when you let the red take over.

Lisa Dillman from the Los Angeles Times writes about Quick, and why his energy should go towards Tuesday's game:

There is more than just a little bit of Ron Hextall living in the body of Kings goalie Jonathan Quick.

That is, the once-hot-tempered goalie Ron Hextall, not the current calm corporate Ron Hextall, the Kings' assistant general manager, destined to run an NHL team someday.

Quick waved his stick and verbally went after both referees after the Kings lost, 2-1, in overtime to the Sharks in Game 3 of their Western Conference semifinal series at San Jose on Saturday night. He received a game misconduct for his actions but escaped supplementary discipline from the NHL.

The league said Sunday that Quick would not be fined or suspended. Rob Shick, an officiating manager and supervisor of this series, told The Times, via email: "This matter has been dealt with."

That can often take the form of the league speaking to Kings management and possibly issuing an informal warning.

Or putting Quick on double secret probation.

"I think he's got to handle that," Sutter said. "He can't be frustrated. That's a byproduct of being a great goaltender."


* Apologies to John Scalzi and his mallet

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About 23 Intently Staring Goalies

23 Intently Staring Goalies comes from the 23 close-up photos of goalies that used to line the walls of my office.

On the good side, it kept down interruptions, but it also made sure I had to leave my trash outside my door if I wanted it picked up.

I've been watching and analyzing goaltenders for going on 40 years. Some of that was spent drawing goalies on my grade 8 math homework. Then it was taking my card decks and printouts to Indianapolis Racer games. Luckily, the Internet took off, and by 1991 I was half of the duo that would ultimately become the Plaidworks hockey mailing lists. I wrote "Handicapping the Goalies' for the San Jose Sharks mailing list, and took a lot of photos of goalies in action. I have around 5000 slides of mostly goaltenders in action from 1989 through 2001 from the WHL, IHL and NHL. Since I've gone digital, I've added about 10,000 more images to the library. During summers and when the league went dark, I was reading through multiple SF By area news papers, tracking ice hockey from the 1917 recreational leagues up through the California Seals.

We'll be talking about goalies and goaltending. We'll talk about whats going on now, who's in the system, and when the doldrums hit, I'll haul something out of the big bag of history, or something from the photo archives. We'll talk about who's hot and why, and who's not and what they can do to get back on track. We'll take a look at the trends in scouting goalies, and why a style may work for one team but not another. I'll battle with my dictation software to get it to understand Bryzgalov and Bobrovsky.

It should be interesting--hope you want to come along for the ride!