Kukla's Korner

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Marquette’s Lakeview Arena (home to the real Hanson Bros.) a Kraft Hockeyville Finalist

Marquette’s (Mich.) Lakeview Arena is the Eastern U.S. Finalist to be named the 2016 Kraft Hockeyville arena  (story here).  

The winning arena has the chance to win $150,000 in upgrades, as well as an opportunity to host a preseason NHL game this September.  The 48 hours of voting starts midnight tonight (Monday, April 25 at 12:00 through Tuesday, April 26 at 11:59).

Kraft Hockeyville has competing videos of the two finalists: Marquette's Lakeview and Rushmore, South Dakota's ThunderDome

As you can see in the short videos, Marquette's rink is in dire need of repairs, while the relatively new rink in South Dakota (built in 1995) is busting at the seems and needs expansion.  I'll let you decide which to vote for, but I'm all in for a new compressor, boards, glass and roof for Lakeview, the home rink for many years of my alma mater - Northern Michigan University.  I wouldn't mind seeing the Red Wings play a pre-season game there either.

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Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, Hockey Equipment, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

Notre Dame to Join Big Ten For Men’s Hockey in 2017.  What Now?

Notre Dame announced on Wednesday that they have agreed to join the Big Ten conference for Mens Hockey in the 2017-18 season.

The FIghting Irish currently reside in Hockey East for men's hockey (where they joined after the dissolution of the CCHA), and as Chris Peters notes in the linked article on CBS Sports, travel has been an issue considering the Irish have to travel to New England for every conference road game.  Joining their midwestern neighbors in the Big Ten probably makes a lot more sense for them in that regard, and it gives the struggling conference another good team.  Peters also astutely notes that the presence of the Big Ten Network doesn't hurt either, both for exposure and revenue.

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Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, College Hockey, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: big+ten, notre+dame

The Human Factor

I don’t want to freak out anyone reading this but I am a human being.  I am not a robot (or *bot* for you kids out there).  I don’t have strings.  I don’t get paid for my opinion although, in my opinion, I should.  I am also a human male.  Which, in general, means that if I am sitting in any kind of bar drinking any kind of ginger ale, I am watching the TV, commenting on any sport that is showing.  For example, I was in Birmingham Michigan yesterday at a bar.  I knew that the Red Wings were in Dallas and the Tigers were in Lakeland and the Lions were losing and the Pistons were playing a game soon.  So I wasn’t looking around for Justin Verlander or Z.  I was watching Golf and College Basketball.  I like College Basketball but I have no emotional investment in any team that doesn’t have the word Michigan in it.  And Golf?  That’s the thing where they hit something and then walk after it right?  But I watched it and I got into it.  There was one drive where it landed near a bunch of people and this (I’m assuming) drunk girl tried to get the ball and was choke slammed into the green.  Which actually means some polite lady asked her to back up a little.

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Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: anaheim+ducks, coaches+challange, detroit-red-wings, los+angeles+kings, mike+babock, nhl

It’s OK

Hello-  How are you?  I am fine.  No, really.  I am fine.  I. Have. No. Twitches. Based. On. Anything. Red. Wings. Related.  Background you ask?  Well I am a four time Stanley Cup Champion.  I have been to the playoffs 24 years in a row.  I have won six conference Championships and the Presidents Trophy six times as well.  What else?  16 Division Championships, Cool.  March 26th 1997.  Yea I was there, anything else you need to know about my background.  Well I am 35 and have been a Red Wings fan since 1990.  Was I a player or a coach or any part of the team during those years?  No.  The 19 people who are reading this understand.  To be a Red Wings fan is to be......No not to be.  It is life.  I remember the Dead Wings.  It wasn’t essential in my life at the time but I remember it.  My first real memories are watching Steve Yzerman play on Play (Comcast Play?) Network.  It was fuzzy.  Maybe it was CBC.  Rock 'em Sock 'em Hockey with Don Cherry.  However, my first real emotion was 1995.  The stupid lockout or strike or whatever.  It sucked.  I WANTED my Red Wings.  I was 14.  I got my wish and we destroyed the league.  Awesome.  And then we met the New Jersey Devils.  Wow.  4 games, really?  That was emotion to the 10th level.  I won’t go through anything past '95 because once again, the 19 know it.  When you fall in love with, well, anything at 14/15 it sticks with you for life.  No matter how much it breaks your heart.  Just ask the girl I was in love with at 15.  I still talk to her even though she is married with three kids. 

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Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: abel+to+yzerman, detroit+red+wings, fans, the+19

Happy 60th Amerks

Last night's game vesus the Hershey Bears celebrated  60 years of AHL in Rochester.

 Kevin Oklobzija of the Democrat & Chronicle...

You can leave, but you can't forget. That's pretty much how it is for players who have worn the Rochester Americans sweater.

Not that they would want to let the memories fade, either.

Through 60 seasons of Amerks hockey, a multitude of special players have enjoyed truly special times.

Some came to town as first- or second-year pros and never left; Jim Hofford, Daryl Drader, Steve Langdon and Brian McKinnon still call the Rochester area home.

Others arrived later in their careers and kept signing contracts so they could stay, like Jody Gage and Chris Taylor.

The full story...
 

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: rochester+amerks

Your father fires your coach - Do you walk out with your teammates in protest? An open forum.

As reported by The Malik Report and Puck Daddy there is a player revolt in Flint. The owner, apparently upset over his son's playing time, fired the entire the coaching staff immediately following an emotional come-from-behind victory. Included among the entire 24 player team roster who threw their jerseys on the floor of the front office symbolizing their united quitting of the the team was the owner's son.

Personally, I find the situation appalling, but apparently nepotism is fairly common in teenage sports and younger, as noted by KK members in the comments of the initial TMR report cited above. But what I find admirable is the owner's son is calling out his father's wish for special treatment by standing with his teammates. How many kids would have the courage to do that?

If you were in that same position, would you stand with your teammates and quit the team, or would you try to stay out of it and hope it all blew over quickly?

If you were on the team and your coach was just fired because of something like this, would you lead a revolt? Would you go along with the person or people who call for one?

What would you do? How would you handle a situation like this?

I'd like to think I would walk out with the team, regardless of potential consequences, that I'd have the courage to stand up for my coach(s). The person I am today would walk out with my team, that I can say for certain.

I yield the floor.

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

Is it time to eliminate hitting from the game?

With recent hits by Mark Stone and Dustin Byfuglien I think this is a good time to ask a question about body checking in general:

Should the NHL go back to the original rule?

In a recent Red Wings Broadcast Mickey Redmond pondered this very question. He spoke about eliminating the idea of finishing a check as most of those hits occur well after the puck has moved on and there is plenty of time to avoid the hitting the now puckless player. He stated the old rule was about separating the player from the puck, not simply throwing one's body around.

I searched for the NHL definition of a legal body check and found nothing. The NHL rule book is packed with infractions, but I could not find the official definition. I do remember hearing the definition ever since I became interested in the game, but I've never read the rule. I think that begs the question how can the NHL define an illegal hit if there is no definition of a legal one?

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

What was Once Old is New Again

Pittsburgh Penguins Slap Shot Remix Parody

 

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

My 2016 Team Canada

With less than  one year until puck drop for the 2016 World Cup of Hockey, I have decided to play every Canadian hockey fans favorite game: Creating Team Canada.

As per usual, the insane amount of depth in the Canadian system could assemble a “B” team that would contend for gold.
Therefore, I stuck to a formula:  Like handed defenceman, Like handed wingers when possible, and a solid mix of offense, speed, special teams and grit.On the backend, I prefer good puck moving d-men that can also hold down the fort.

Ideally, I would have kept wingers on the wing and centers at center, but let’s face it; Canada’s depth at center make that impossible.

So here you have it, Canada’s 2016 World Cup of Hockey Squad:

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Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: team+canada

Red Wings Prospect Tourney- View From the Cheap Seats

Well folks, I'm back from another entertaining Prospect Tourney in beautiful Traverse City.  Gorgeous scenery, interesting people watching and ultra competitive hockey is the name of the game during the Red Wings yearly competition, and this time around was no different.

What was different this year, besides my wife, who is pregnant with our first, living in her own personal hell of being surrounded by wine and being able to drink exactly none of it, was some of the people we ran into around the rink.  Family and friends of the prospects and staff alike were everywhere over the weekend, and we were lucky enough to spend some time with many of them.  We were able to talk to Mrs. Blashill (Jeff's mother) while perusing the gift shop.  We had the pleasure of watching a game with Dylan Larkin's mother, who gave us her insight into some of the pressure her son is dealing with since the draft.  I came across Dan Hinote while waiting for the bathroom, and even though he was in enemy territory he was more than willing to talk hockey for a few.  We even had the opportunity to watch the championship game with Evgeny Svechnikov's brother, who tried to tell us many things in heavily accented English, but mainly wanted us to know exactly how to pronounce his brother's name.

Now that the excitements over and my wife is busy thinking up ways to make me pay for her forced sobriety, I figured Id give my thoughts on some of the Wings prospects.  These are just my personal rantings, so take them for what they're worth.  You're mileage may vary.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

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