Kukla's Korner

Blue Jackets Lacking An Identity

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,

Tonight, the Jackets play the Vancouver Canucks at Nationwide Arena. The Canucks (15-6-1) have the second-best record in the Western Conference. They have found something. The Jackets (6-13-2) have the second-worst record in the league. They have lost something.

“When you’ve done something, it becomes an expectation and a standard, and we haven’t been up to that standard,” coach Todd Richards said after practice yesterday. “We have to expect that standard every night.”...

What the Jackets are missing, though, is who they are.

“We haven’t been able to find our identity,” Foligno said. “It comes from the players. Not management, not coaches. It comes from the players, and it has to change.”

The Jackets are fast and physical, and they have an aggressive forecheck. At least that was their identity last season, and the half-season before that.

“I don’t know if camouflaged is the right word,” Richards said. “It’s there, but sometimes we can’t find it.”


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

Black Friday Shopping From Home

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Want to do some Black Friday shopping but avoid all the mayhem?

Amazon.com has sale which ends tonight, so take advantage of those deals.



It's also a great way to help out KK since I receive a small commission for every sale used through the link.

Thanks and happy shopping.

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Filed in: KK Website Business, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Friday Morning Hockey Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

- Any team talking to the St. Louis Blues in a trade has to be asking about Vladimir Sobotka, who didn’t like their offer this summer and hiked off to the KHL. He’s a perfect third-line centre on a good, bad or indifferent team. He could be the toughest pound-for-pound player in the entire league. Could the Oilers use him? Is the grass green?

- With Mike Fisher (Achilles surgery) back, the Predators have a boatload of centres (Mike Ribeiro, Colin Wilson, Calle Jarnkrok, Paul Gaustad, Matt Cullen, Derek Roy, Olli Jokinen), with many shifting to the wing. Fisher was between Roy and Jokinen for the Oilers game Thursday. Most likely to move is Jokinen. He has only one point in 21 games.

- Vincent Lecavalier and fellow forward R.J. Umberger played 11 and 10 minutes respectively for the Flyers in the 5-2 loss to Detroit Wednesday. Expensive dead-men skating, unfortunately. Plugger Zac Rinaldo played as many minutes as the once-starry Lecavalier, which is sad. He’s run out of gas at 34.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Drew Miller chooses a very smart way to give to charity on a statistical basis

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Drew Miller's the player whose gloves and sticks you're most likely to find at Hockeytown Authentics.

Because he blocks so many shots (to the point that he's got plastic "shot-blocker" inserts in his gloves after breaking his hand two springs ago) and kills so many penalties, you'd think that he goes through a lot of sticks, but the sticks you'll find at HTA, whether it's at the Joe or in Troy, are actually in pretty good condition, so he must be one of those players who believes in a stick for each period (a la Nicklas Lidstrom).

That's a little amusing given that Miller's inherited Luke Glendening's status as having Depleted Uranium Hands this season, but DetroitRedWings.com's Craig Peterson reports that as a result, Miller's chosen to give significant funds to charity by focusing on "scoring" something other than goals:

The importance of food bringing families together is not lost on Red Wings forward Drew Miller, whose efforts during this season will help make a donation to the Salvation Army's Bed and Bread Truck program. Miller wants to have a positive impact on the Detroit community with his efforts on and off the ice, which is why he plans to donate $75 (U.S.) for every blocked shot he records this season.

“The food bank is something that I thought would be (a good cause),” he said. “A lot of people are not eating out there, especially in Detroit. The city is making a comeback but there’s still people out there that need some help and I think that’s something myself and my wife want to be a part of.”

When asked about the unique statistic he chose to contribute his efforts with, Miller said he wanted to make a worthwhile donation that would have an affect on people.

“That’s probably the one stat I have the most in. You want to pick a stat that is prominent for myself and I don’t really have a lot of goals and assists in the season …you want to donate and help out.”

Peterson continues, explaining that even one blocked shot delivers a ton of charitable bang for Miller's buck...

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

The overnight: Red Wings-Devils set-up, on Weiss, football, infected wounds and Lidstrom on Alfie

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

It would behoove the Red Wings to take advantage of any possibility that the New Jersey Devils take as much note of the first day of Martin Brodeur's tenure as a St. Louis Blues try-out as their media corps are at present.

On Thursday, the Wings tried to maximize their American Thanksgiving home time before taking a 6 PM flight to Newark, where tonight, the 12-5-and-5 Wings hope to earn their 3rd straight win for the 1st time this season, building upon Wednesday night's 4-2 win over Philly as they take on the 9-10-and-3 Devils (7:30 PM EST on FSD/MSG Plus/97.1 FM).

The Devils most recently dropped a 2-0 decision to Vancouver on Tuesday, wrapping up a 5-game West Coast swing in which they went 1-3-and-1, and the Devils are 3-7-and-1 in their past 11 games, so there's quite a bit of concern about New Jersey's fortunes, as the Bergen Record's Tom Gulitti noted:

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Prospect and alumni news: Kadeikin breaks through with SKA; on McCrimmon, Howe, Chelios and Shanahan

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The prospect catch-up post of doom had to wait for sleep and turkey on Thursday, and I apologize for that, but it's coming sooner than later. In the interim, two of the three Red Wings prospects who played on Thursday had big games, the Wings' AHL affiliate was queried regarding an article about the AHL's 3-on-3 OT tweak, and three alumni stories of note popped up.

First, in game action: In Russia, Alexander Kadeikin, who's been bouncing in and out of SKA St. Petersburg's lineup, scored the 3-1 and 6-1 goals in SKA's 6-1 win over Metallurg Novokuznetsk. Kadeikin/Kadeykin (depending upon how you transliterate Cyrillic phonetic letters) scored his 2nd and 3rd goals, took 4 shots, and won 8 of 9 faceoffs in 11:51 of ice time.

If you want to watch 6-and-a-half minutes of Russian highlights, the KHL's YouTube channel provides for your needs:

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Lady Byng Leader

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

A week and a half ago, I picked Jakub Voracek of the Philadelphia Flyers as the Lady Byng Trophy leader as the player who best combines gentlemanly conduct and playing ability.  He has doubled his penalty minute total since I made that pick, which means his gentlemanly conduct credentials have dropped.  My new pick is Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks.  Kane has 21 points, which currently places him in 17th in the league in scoring.  He has no penalty minutes at all which gives him strong credentials for sportsmanlike play.

Kane has come close to winning the Lady Byng Trophy in the past.  In 2013, he was the runner up to the award - which Martin St Louis won.  Statistically he probably should have won it.  The main reason Kane did not win the award is a dispute over a taxi fare in 2009, which lead to an indictment on criminal charges.  He wound up with a conditional discharge.  While this is embarrassing and not exactly gentlemanly conduct, it did not fall within the realm of the award.  It did not occur on the ice or within the season the award was for. 

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Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

Daniel Alfredsson Tweet heavily hints at retirement on December 4th

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

This is as close to, "I'm officially retiring on December 4th" as it gets:

Update: The Senators posted a video confirming the event:


Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

The Wings Know It Will Take Stephen Weiss Time To Get In Game Shape

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

Two games is a small sample size, but the Detroit Red Wings are encouraged by what they have seen from Stephen Weiss.

Jimmy Howard called him a great addition. It's like adding a potential top-six forward one-quarter of the way through the season without relinquishing anything.

"Once he gets his confidence and game shape ... you have to remember he hasn't played that many games in the last year or so," Howard said. "Right now it's baby steps, but he's doing a great job for us. Hopefully he can keep going and then slide over to that center spot."...

"It's a lot easier with (Datsyuk) in the middle," Weiss said. "He can take care of mistakes that Helmer and I make. But certainly as a first game together it wasn't anything spectacular in terms of possession. But we got some bounces. It was nice to contribute."


Oh, in case you keep track of early rankings, Sportsnet has the Wings at 18th in their power rankings.

added 4:51pm, Nicholas J. Cotsonik of Yahoo takes a look at Weiss too...

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Video- The Best Of Bob Cole

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Sportsnet YouTube channel,

A look, or should we say, a listen to the some of the greatest and most memorable calls so far in the 40 plus year career of legendary hockey announcer Bob Cole.


Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bob+cole

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