Kukla's Korner

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One On One With Coyotes Prospect Connor Murphy

Connor Murphy is a 20 year old who has spent his last two years with the Sarnia Sting of the OHL. In those two season, Connor Murphy tallied 40 points with a +11. He was drafted by the Coyotes at 20th overall in the 2012 NHL Draft. The scouting report on Murphy from Hockey's Future:

A rangy blueliner who is a very mobile skater, Murphy is still growing into his size and high potential. He is a smooth skater who gets around the ice and plays a smart, confident gamewith and without the puck. Plays with some good physicality and is very effective with a long reach and wing span.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, d, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

Questioning God (AKA Daniel Alfredsson)

At some point on Thursday, the Ottawa sports media will be stirred from the sleepy doldrums of summer to meet with the man who was, until recently, the longest serving captain in the NHL and the dominant face of the Ottawa Senators franchise. They'll get to question him on why he chose to break the hearts of his faithful and leave for the apparently greener pastures of the Motor City.

The thing is, in the Ottawa media, questioning Daniel Alfredsson is not exactly the natural state of things. Alfie's word has been held to be gospel truth, his actions sacrosanct, his motives pure. Even when he might have seemed to have mispoke, it would be considered the height of blasphemy to do anything less than rush immediately to his defence. A lack of faith in the cult of Alfie was enough to prove one was (at least) out of touch with reality (or worse still, a Leafs fan).  Little wonder, to those in Ottawa, that I-Phone's helpful homonculus, Siri, famously confused Alfie with God.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Ottawa Senators, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: daniel+alfredsson

“This isn’t philantrophy”

By now, most with any interest in the drama surrounding Daniel Alfredsson's departure from Ottawa will be aware of most of the story. Paul has linked to James Gordon's great piece in Senators Extra where he interviewed Sens owner Eugene Melnyk (insert CSI joke here...and now that that's out of the way). Gordon attempted to get some answers, and ended up with a story that was a bit different from the one that the team put out in the immediate aftermath. It was also chronicled in a fullsome and thoughtful way in the pages of the Malik Report, from the perspective of one Wings fan who happens to have a Senators' jersey with Alfredsson's name on it hanging in his closet. I thought I'd offer one Senator's fan's perspective on the evolving drama, and the evolving explainations that have come from the Sens management and ownership.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Ottawa Senators, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: daniel+alfredsson

A sports fan: Roster management

Florida has a number of excellent up and coming players, an area of promise but also an area of potential disappointment. These include the just drafted Barkov, said to be ready to step into an NHL lineup right away and likely to center at some point the the Calder rookie winner Huberdeau, who has the skill to be a star player for years to come. Headlining the promising young defensemen are Kulikov and Gudbranson, both developing into solid top four or even top two defensemen and both still young, especially for defensemen. Markstrom has been widely touted as a top goalie prospect for a few years and is likely to be given a legitimate shot at starting from the get go this season. Other promising young players are Shore, Bjugstad, Howden, Matthias, Matheson, and Petrovic.

In 2011 Dale Tallon stepped in as GM and made a number of moves and signings that brought in a number of overpaid players, partly to get above the cap floor. Tallon brought in and then resigned Versteeg, as well as trading for Campbell, whose contract has been criticized widely as being too much for his value. Other signings included Jovanovski, Upshall, Kopecky, and Bergenheim, and each of the aforementioned players have arguably or certainly failed to play up to their contracts. This may be due to injury, but regardless, these contracts will cripple the team's ability to spend especially through the 14-15 season and also through the 15-16 season.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, New York Islanders, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

European Trophy starts today

European Trophy, Europe's premium club competition.

Hungry for a Boxscore?

 

 

The Eurpoean Trophy kicks off today, continues Friday, and really picks up the pace early next week.

Participating teams represent seven different countries.  Many of them have won relatively recent championships in their respective leagues. And some are Europes oldest teams (a look at the teams page will verify this).

I imagine that one of the Euro streaming sites will provide coverage to those interested in hockey in August

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

What to look for in a goal scorer?

On August 4, 1921, a goal scorer by the name of Joseph Henri Maurice "The Rocket" Richard was born. "The Rocket" is also the name of trophy that is awarded to the winner of the goal scoring title, so what a better day to talk about goal scoring than today. At this moment I'm currently taking a Hockey GM and Scouting, so I will share with you my knowledge on what makes a goal scorer so great. 

Accuracy: If you want to be a goal scorer in this league, it is a really nice skill to have to be able to be able to make the right choice as to where to shoot, and also being about to hit the target. He needs to be able to have his hands in good positioning, and with his eyes on the target at hand. He's also going to have know whether he's going to use a wrist shot, or snap shot. Being able to anticipate the goaltender's movement within a fraction of a second. Being able to predict the goalies movement, all critical. 

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Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

A sports fan: Choosing a team

Continuing my experiment with trying to become a fan of another team, I am partially motivated to choose a team that is different from Detroit. I listed the following qualities for choosing Detroit in my previous post: a rich history, good management and ownership, winning culture, and class. I provided two requirements for my new team previously: first, that it be a team without much recent success, and second, that it be a newer team.

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Top UFAs available

We are now 42 games away from the first preseason game of the year, and there is still plenty of key free agents looking for a new team. Yet, there is little to no noise. Here are my top 5 UFAs still available and which team(s) would be best fit.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

A sports fan

I had never been much of one for sports as a child. I was small and uncoordinated, and tired easily compared to other kids. My parents quickly gave up on bringing me to play baseball as I just could not hit the ball. Along with and perhaps because of my lack of interest in playing sports, I also did not watch any sports. 

Because of this, the idea of watching sports and particularly being a fan of a team or athlete was alien to me. I could not understand what the players on television had to do with me. Why should an athlete's success at a sport, which has no inherent value, influence my emotions? For every athlete that wins, there is at least one other who loses, and there was usually no reason for me to cheer on one over the other.

All the same, in 2009 I decided that watching sports would make me a more well rounded person. Sports are something you can talk to almost any male about, even when you meet him for the first time. But unlike most, I had the unique opportunity to shop around and choose which sport I wanted to watch. Most of us become interested in a sport because it's the sport we played or continue to play, and that sport is often the sport our father played. I am not one for getting into something that will take a significant amount of my time without research, and so I did my studying. 

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

A Day with the Cup

I have heard all the wild stories about the Cup's summer travels, but this one is hard to top, the Cup visits Children's Hospital of Chicago.

Photo album of the visit.

The accompanying video.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

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