Kukla's Korner

NHL Short Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

SNEAK PEEK AT WEDNESDAY’S ACTION
All Times Eastern
Montreal @ Tampa Bay, 7:00 p.m., CNBC, CBC, RDS, SUN
Columbus @ Pittsburgh, 7:30 p.m., NBCSN, CBC, FS-O, ROOT
Dallas @ Anaheim, 10:00 p.m., NBCSN, TSN, RDS (JIP), FS-SW, FS-W

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Paul Maurice Staying In Winnipeg

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via TSN,

Paul Maurice has agreed to a four-year contract extension to remain head coach of the Winnipeg Jets.

Maurice became the Jets' interim coach on Jan. 12 when he replaced the fired Claude Noel.

Maurice, 47, is coaching his third NHL franchise. He had two stints with the Hartford Whalers/Carolina Hurricanes and also coached the Toronto Maple Leafs for two seasons.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Winnipeg Jets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: paul+maurice

From The Boston Point Of View

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

from Joe McDonald of ESPNBoston,

Bruins in six. This is should be an interesting and entertaining series. Of all the first-round matchups in the Stanley Cup playoffs, this one could be the most difficult to win. Boston’s reward for winning the Presidents’ Trophy will be one pesky opponent. Still, the Bruins will prevail based on their overall game.

more

from Matt Kalman of the Boston Herald,

Aside from harnessing their emotions, the Bruins also must find a way to counter Detroit’s speed and skill. Their game plan didn’t work out all that well in the regular season, as the Red Wings won three of the four meetings. Two of Detroit’s wins, however, were by one goal.

“We’ve played some fast teams before,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said. “And again, we can look at the record whichever way we want and see us 1-3. I look at the games we played against them, and there was one, the first one in Detroit, that we didn’t play very well. The other three we could’ve won the two that we had the lead. I don’t think it’s going to be that big of an issue as much as we may be an issue for them. Teams have strengths and it’s how you counter those things.

“I think our team can certainly skate. I don’t think we’re a slow team. Whether people underrate our skating or not, I don’t know. But we’ve shown that we can skate with these guys and certainly close a gap quick on those guys, too. And that’s what you’ve got to do, you’ve got to make sure you don’t give those guys too much room because they’ll make plays and they’ll take the ice that you give them.”

more

CSNNE with a 1 1/2 minute video breaking down the series...

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

How Will The Wings Handle The Physical Play From The Bruins?

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

Larry Brooks of the New York Post makes his first round predictions...

Bruins over Red Wings in 6: Boston was extended to Game 7 in the first round last year before the miracle rally to overcome a third-period 4-1 deficit and defeat the Maple Leafs in overtime a year after losing a first-round Game 7 OT to an inferior Capitals team, so the first round may be the best time to get Boston.

The Red Wings, though still without Henrik Zetterberg, should be as healthy as they have been all season. It will be fascinating to see how playoff neophytes Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Tatar and Tomas Jurco respond to the Bruins’ relentless physical work.

read on for the other first round matchups...

I do believe it will be interesting to see how the Wings handle the physical play of the Bruins.  If they handle it well, it could very well be a turning point in the series, one that has yet to begin.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Bruce Boudreau Wants The Cup

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lance Pugmire of the LA Times,

Maybe a man who has steered his teams to six regular-season division titles but never gotten one past a second-round playoff series is supposed to keep quiet about his longing to hold the Stanley Cup.

That’ll never be Bruce Boudreau.

The Ducks coach, who will lead his Western Conference top-seeded team into the postseason Wednesday night against the wild-card Dallas Stars, unabashedly has obsessed about the best-known trophy in sports.

“Think about it every single day of my life,” Boudreau told The Times on Monday. “When I’m by myself, when I take a walk … since I’ve been 10 years old.

“It’s all I’ve ever wanted to do. It’s not a question of the will and the want not being there. It’s a question of, sometimes you’ve got the opportunity and you’ve got to make good on it.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bruce+boudreau

USA Hockey Proposes A Look-Up Area On The Ice

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jeff Z. Klein of the New York Times,

Despite a series of rule changes and awareness campaigns aimed at eliminating spinal cord trauma, amateur hockey players continue to sustain paralyzing injuries from crashing into the boards. Tom Smith of Swampscott, Mass., had the extraordinary misfortune to incur two separate spinal injuries, in 2008 and 2009.

“Hockey was my life,” said Smith, 24, who walks with the aid of two canes. “I didn’t want anyone to have the game of hockey ripped away from them because of a head injury, a neck injury, any injury. So we came up with the Look-Up Line.”

The line is essentially a visual warning track, alerting players to their proximity to the unyielding boards. USA Hockey’s board of directors will vote on a proposal to adopt the Look-Up Line when it meets on June 6 in Colorado Springs.

If the measure is approved, every arena under USA Hockey’s jurisdiction will paint a 40-inch-wide bright orange band on the ice along the boards. The arenas will have to comply by 2017, but the board could also vote to expedite the change as a matter of safety.

continued including a picture of the proposed warning area...

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: usa+hockey

It’s Not Randy Carlyle’s Fault

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rosie DiManno of the Toronto Star,

As tempting and knee-jerk as it is to blame the bench boss for the calamity that befell the Toronto Maple Leafs in the last month of the season — 2-12-0 — the fault lies with a group of players who could not rally from an ever-deepening hockey stupor, failing the test of character and fortitude, time and time again.

Oh, there were flashes of backbone, when least expected — beating Boston in the second last week of the schedule, especially. Yet those spurts of mettle were fleeting and ultimately misleading. This was more the team that lost to Winnipeg and Florida and New Jersey down the dismaying stretch; less the team that rose to the challenge of the Bruins.

And the core problem, I suggest, is that the players still don’t see themselves for what they are. They scratch their heads and wonder, how did this happen? The answer is staring them in the face, if only they looked hard in the mirror.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Playing The ‘Game’ On Paper

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,

The Jackets are hurting. Nathan Horton (abdominal surgery) is out. Nick Foligno (knee) and R.J. Umberger (upper body) are still mending. Among the three are 1,700 regular-season and 86 playoff games worth of experience. The youngest team in the league is missing its prime veteran forwards as the series gets underway. That is killer.

There is this notion that Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury — a former No. 1 overall draft pick who is in his prime — might somehow falter, and thus give the Jackets a chance. I don’t buy it.

<> Fleury is coming off one of the best regular seasons of his career. What is he going to be thinking about? That he has the worst playoff stats of any goaltender over the past 10 years? That he was so brutal, he lost his job in the middle of the first round last year? That he is somehow inferior to Bobrovsky?

Come on. That would be like saying the Penguins don’t like getting hit.

So, never mind that the Penguins have lost to a lower seed in each of the past four seasons. The Jackets don’t have a chance.

more

from Gene Collier of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Your First Round Picks For The NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

note- moved to top of page in order for others to see this, original post was 4/15/14 at 1:30pm.

Are you a hockey expert?

Have you played the game?

It doesn't matter, in my mind all hockey fans should have their say when it comes to predictions, so here is your chance to make them.

Just list the winner of each matchup and if you want to go the extra mile, how many game will each series go?

 

 

Bracket via TSN

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

First Round Playoff Predictions

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

It is playoff time and time to make first round playoff predictions.  As always, I expect to get some of these predictions wrong.  If hockey was completely predictable, why would we bother to watch?  I do expect that I will get more of these predictions correct than wrong and that it isn't possible to get them all right without an extreme amount of luck on your side.

Anaheim defeats Dallas.  The Ducks probably overachieved to win the West Conference but they have a good team.  Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf may be the best healthy one-two punch in the game (given that Malkin's health in questionable).  Jim Nill has done a lot to right the Dallas franchise and get them back into the playoffs, but that will likely be their high-water mark this season.

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Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

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