KK Members Blog
From an era where goaltenders seemed more fee spirited than the current versions.
Don McLeod passed away a week ago today at the age of 68.
It could be argued, he was the first of the stickhandling goalies, the Calgary Sun article describes meoires of Smokey.
Don 'Smokey' McLeod remembered by former teammates
McLeod, who hailed from Trail, B.C., thus the nickname, won the Memorial Cup with the Edmonton Oil Kings in 1966, defeating Bobby Orr and the Oshawa Generals in the best-of-seven series.
He turned pro with the Detroit Red Wings organization, finally stepping into the NHL in 1970-71 before being claimed by the Philadelphia Flyers after that season and spending one year split between the big leagues and the minors.
He jumped to the WHA for its inaugural season, 1972-73, and the following year led the Houston Aeros, who featured Gordie Howe, to the Avco Cup championship, a year in which he was named the league’s top goalie and to the loop’s all-star team.
“One thing I know for sure is you don’t win a championship without a hot goalie, and he was darn good for our hockey club when we needed him,” said Mark Howe, Gordie’s son and a hall of famer who was part of the Aeros team as an 18-year-old rookie.
more from Randy Spartak
Hello fellow Kukla's Korner Readers,
I'm writing you regarding a dear friend of mine. She is the single mother raising an autistic child.
His lifelong dream is to play for the Detroit Red Wings. She has spent her life providing for her son, often working several jobs to fund his passions. She has little, if any outside financial support. She posted on her Facebook that her son would no longer be able to play hockey due to financial restrictions. I know this is crushing her, and I know that he will be devastated if he can't play. I'm asking for your support in helping Nassim achieve his dream, if nothing else, help keep him playing the game we all love.
I know how much my family sacrificed to make sure I could play, and it breaks my heart to hear of someone who does everything for her son realizing she just can't make his dreams come true because of money. I am asking all of you, if you can, just to give a little bit to make sure Nassim can play hockey. Thanks!!!
Here is the campaign I started: http://www.gofundme.com/fu9gyc
P.S. Paul and I communicated regarding this matter, and he deemed it a worthy cause to post on Kuklas Korner. Thanks Paul, and Go Wings!!
For those looking for some live hockey in August.
The Champions Hocley League is kicking off today. This is what used to be known as the European Hockey Trophy. http://europeantrophy.com/
Eleven different European Leagues are represented. With strong representation from SEL and Liiga.
There are a few different ways to stream the action.
The CHL, AHL, NHL are still comepting for championships. As such, championships from around the world have been determined in the past few weeks. Many of these league
Switzerland - ZSC Lions are National League A Champions
From "The Atlantic", one of the most comprehensive articles I have seen on Finnish Goaltending. It discusses, the heritage, the difference in approach versus North America, and the fear that the Swedes have overtaken the Finns as the leading producer of elite goaltenders.
Not the Griffins, even though, you know, they are leading everyone else in terms of point percentage. We'll says it's Abbotsford because, you know, they've played 4 more games than the Detroit Red Wings affiliate. Arbitratily, we'll rate the Griffins at third becuase there's another team tied with them in points, the Monarchs, even though they've played two more games than the Griffs.
This public service announcement brought to you by SNARK.
The American Hockey League is apparently looking to build on the hockey connections between Sweden and North America, and build a little rivalry in the process.
The league has announced that this year's AHL All-Star Classic in St. John's NL will feature an inter-league game between a team of AHL stars the SHL's Färjestad BK.
This is a really cool idea, and one that will probably get tongues wagging about increasing the integration between North American and European pro-leagues. No word on any reciprocation by the AHL - but one has to assume that something could be in the works that will see an AHL team head to Sweden at some point.
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
It has only been a few weeks since the CHL announced the ban on European goalie. At the time I was in Finland instructing and learning how to instruct in their system. Since then a few articles have surfaced discussing the Swedish system of developing goaltenders. The Finns view the Swedes as the country most likely to overtake them as the leading developer of goaltenders.
What is the Swedish Recipe for goaltending development.? The two links below will reveal their secret ingredients.
A continent away, Europe's season ending championship is taking place, with teams sourced by the 17th through 30th best teams from the NHL.
One player who is not from an NHL team is gathering some attention, this entry from the NYT Slap Shot Blog discusses John Gibson at the 2013 IIHF World Championships.
It is rare for the United States to use a teenage goalie at the International Ice Hockey Federation world championships, and John Gibson’s performance in his tournament debut was of rare quality.
Gibson, a 19-year-old from Pittsburgh, made 31 saves to backstop the Americans to a 4-1 win over Finland on Wednesday. The Finns are co-hosting the tournament with Sweden this year, but he was unfazed by the boisterous, flag-waving crowd of 12,484 at Helsinki’s Hartwall Arena.
At 19, it is hard to tell how much seasoning he will need before the Anahiem Ducks have a goaltending logjam.
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