Kukla's Korner

John Tavares Still Unsigned

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

With each passing day, the anxiety level rises just a little bit. Come another month, especially after the NHL draft on June 22 in Dallas, if John Tavares remains unsigned with the Islanders, the fans will be in an all-out tizzy.

But it sure seems that is where the signs are pointing for the captain, who will turn 28 during this next training camp and has dutifully played out his first nine seasons with the organization that took him with the No. 1-overall selection in 2009. If he has gone this far without making decision — and the Islanders have continued to allow him the biggest breadth imaginable to consider about other options — then why not at least go through the free-agent courting process from June 25-30 and see just exactly what is available?from Brett Cyrgalis of the New York Post,...

With logical speculation that the legendary Lou Lamoriello is going to be brought in either as the new GM or as president in charge of all hockey operations — the latter likely ending Snow’s tumultuous run — the structure of the front office is a question Tavares has to consider. And why would he make a decision before that is set?


Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: john+tavares

A Must Win Game Today For The Winnipeg Jets

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ken Wiebe of the Winnipeg Sun,

The moment of truth has arrived for the Winnipeg Jets.

After dropping three consecutive games to the Vegas Golden Knights, the Jets find themselves in a position that seemed inconceivable given the way the series opener of the Western Conference final went.

Those three goals in fewer than eight minutes in the first period seem like a distant memory right now.

Since roaring out of the gate with an offensive explosion, the Jets are having great difficulty getting pucks past Golden Knights goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, who has been downright brilliant between the pipes.

Creating high-quality scoring chances has not been an issue for the Jets, but finding a way to finish them is another story entirely.


Remember, today's game is an afternoon affair, with puck drop just after 3:00pm ET today.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Winnipeg Jets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: vegas+golden+knights

Once Up 2-0 In The Series, The Washington Capitals Now Face Elimination

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Barry Svrluga of the Washington Post,

The shape of this series against the Tampa Bay Lightning is such that the Capitals frittered away their breakthrough against Pittsburgh and are now in position to do something that seemed impossible after vanquishing the Penguins: add to their ignominy. The Capitals’ 3-2 loss to the Lightning on Saturday night at Amalie Arena was their third straight. That comfortable advantage? Poof. One more loss, and that’s it. No more hockey.

Before you start bemoaning that the past is the past and it’s trite and lazy to associate these Caps with those Caps, a reminder: In the past 50 years, 21 teams won the first two games on the road in either the conference or Stanley Cup finals. All 21 of those teams won the series. None needed a seventh game.

The Capitals won the first two games in Tampa. Now those same Capitals need to win Monday night at home to force a seventh game.

Such a stat would fit right in with all those old Capitals. And then these Capitals said things all those old Capitals might have said.

“Obviously, two mistakes and they score a goal,” captain Alex Ovechkin said. “But give us credit. We don’t stop playing.”


Below, watch the game highlights.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink

NHL Short Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The Lightning defeated the Capitals to win Game 5 and take a 3-2 series lead in the Eastern Conference Final. When the Conference Finals/Semifinals is tied 2-2 (since 1974-75), the winner of Game 5 owns an all-time series record of 22-7 (75.9%).

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Video- Coach’s Corner Tonight

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Sportsnet's YouTube channel,

Ron and Don discuss the play of Andrei Vasilevskiy, Marc-Andre Fleury, and how important these goaltending performances are to a playoff run.

Plus Don Cherry brought up the big event across the pond today.


Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: don+cherry, ron+maclean

All George McPhee

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Iain McIntyre of Sportsnet,

Sportsnet: Of the Knights’ accomplishment, what makes you most proud?

McPhee: There’s two things. We really like the people we’re working with. That means more than anything – to work with the high-quality people we’ve hired throughout the organization and the high-quality people we have playing the game for us. The other accomplishment would be how well the sport has been received in Las Vegas. We really needed this to work. The league needed it to work. Having a successful team in Las Vegas really increased the visibility of the NHL. We needed this to work, and it has worked well. And the roots can now grow deep.

Sportsnet: You told us that the Oct. 1 shooting accelerated the bond between the team and community like nothing else could have. Can you try to explain that for people who haven’t been to Las Vegas and felt that connection?

read on

Filed in: KK Website Business, KK Interviews, NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: vegas+golden+knights

Open Post- Game 5 Of The Eastern Conference Final

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Puck drop is scheduled for 7:15pm ET and is on NBC, CBC and TVAS.

With a win tonight, the Tampa Bay Lightning or Washington Capitals will have a chance to wrap up the series on Monday night.

Feel free to comment on the game.

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink

Bill Daly On European Expansion

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

The NHL, likely to name Seattle soon as its 32nd franchise, for years has eyed the possibility of expanding to Europe, as well as Scandinavia and Russia. It remains a curiosity, said Daly, but there are myriad impediments, including the obvious long-distance travel challenges as well as arena suitability.

“I think the biggest issue now is probably facility availability,” he said. “The facility is such a big part of the revenue of our sport now — the business and economics of our sport — and I just don’t think it’s even close to the same level in Europe in terms of arena sophistication and amenity standpoint.”

All sports leagues — except maybe the NFL because it only plays once a week — would need “a core number of cities” added simultaneously overseas to make such an expansion viable.

“I don’t know what that number of cities is,” said Daly, “but it’s more than one.”

more topics including the Vegas Golden Knights and the NHL/China...

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bill+daly

Saturday Hockey Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

- The analytics community likes to bash Brooks Orpik, the Washington defenceman. Let them bash. In three rounds of the Stanley Cup playoffs, heading into Saturday night, Orpik had been on the ice for four even strength goals against in 16 games. Analytics darling Jake Gardiner was on the ice for five goals in one game against Boston.

- Focus and attention to detail may cost the Winnipeg Jets their shot at the Stanley Cup. They have the most talented team left in the playoffs, but their propensity for being scored on right after they score may see them eliminated against the Golden Knights of Vegas.

- Even after he wins the Vezina Trophy, which he will, how do the Nashville Predators bring Pekka Rinne back to play goal next season?

a few more hockey notes...

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Sweden and Switzerland Will Play For Gold At The World Championship

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Sunday, the bronze medal game will be at 9:30am ET and the gold medal game at 2:00pm.

Switzerland beat Canada 3-2 and earlier Sweden beat the USA 6-0.


Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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