Kukla's Korner

LA Kings Fire Terry Murray

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

Yesterday the Los Angeles Kings announced that they fired coach Terry Murray.  It appears this move was pushed along by media reports (such as this one from Helene Elliott) that reported the firing was coming soon.  The Kings do not appear to have their next coach in place yet and promoted assistant coach John Stevens to coach at least for the interim.  It appears that Darryl Sutter is the likely replacement but he hasn’t been hired yet.

Terry Murray had been relatively successful as the Kings coach.  He made the playoffs in the last two seasons of his three plus years as their coach.  The Kings have been flat so far this season.  They have a 13-16 record with four regulation tie points.  This places the Kings in 12th in the West Conference.  They are only two points out of eighth place and a playoff berth.

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Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

It’s Getting Scary In Denver

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Pierre LeBrun of ESPN answers the rants of the fans,

Pierre, I’m officially calling for both Joe Sacco and Greg Sherman’s heads in Colorado. The team is pathetic right now and they haven’t changed a thing. The price paid for Varlamov was extremely high and now it’s about to burn the Avs in the worst way if they don’t change course soon. The team has been at the cap floor for the past few seasons and the ownership shows no sign of caring. Can someone make Stan Kroenke sell the team to someone who cares?

My take (Lebrun): I don’t blame Avs fans for feeling this way. The Erik Johnson deal in particular is really haunting them. That Washington has Colorado’s first-round pick next June for Semyon Varlamov? Ouch. What’s dangerous is that if most Denver fans think like you, the marketplace could be lost. This was once an automatic sellout. Now they can’t give tickets away. That’s what is really scary.

more Q & A….

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink

From the Dub: Everybody’s Tri-City Americans

Blog: Above the Glass By Samantha

They’ve dialed the Portland Winterhawks’ number. And so far this season, the Tri-City Americans have dialed it in every game they’ve played against the Hawks. This weekend they did it again, with a 3-0 win that extends their points lead in the top spot in the WHL’s U.S. Division. Their roster is full of NHL prospects, relatives of NHL players and two very talented brothers, all of whom come to every game to kill and eat anything that wears a Winterhawks jersey. You know what they say; keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer. So, let’s meet the Tri-City Americans, shall we?

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Filed in: | Above the Glass | Permalink

The History Of The Lady Byng Trophy

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Glen Goodhand/Hockey Historical Highlights at the Oshawa Express,

Lady Evelyn Byng, wife of Canada’s 12th Governor General (1921 through 1926) was a keen hockey fan. She and her husband could often be found in the auditorium in Ottawa watching the Senator’s games.

But she was disturbed by the unnecessary violence and dirty play in general. So in March 1925 she contacted Frank Calder, president of the NHL, voicing her concerns. At that time she offered to donate a “challenge cup,” a trophy to be awarded to “any man on any team in the NHL, who, though being thoroughly effective, is also a thoroughly clean player.”

Her offer was accepted, and that very season Frank Nighbor of the home-town Ottawas was the undisputed winner of this new honour. In fact he was voted the award the first two years it was offered.

But the desired affect of her incentive for clean play fell short of expectations.


Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Tweak The Waiver Wire Rule?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damian Cristodero of Lightning Strikes,

Yzerman said he has no problem with Winnipeg making the claim (Antti Miettinen).

“Not at all,” he said. “If somebody else signed him, depending on the contract, we would have considered claiming him. They were well within the rules and were entitled to do it.”

The rule was put in place in order to stop teams from stockpiling players in Europe (thus circumventing the salary cap) and bringing them back to the NHL when needed. But the flaw is that the team that has done all the work signing the player is at a disadvantage when it comes to keeping him. That is why the Lightning tried to make the contract as unfriendly to other teams as possible by signing Miettinen to a two-year deal with a no-move clause.

“I don’t know if it’s fair or unfair, but there is a flaw to it,” Yzerman said. “I think it needs to be tweaked. Maybe, like, you can’t be claimed by a team higher than you in the standings, I don’t know.”

a bit more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, Winnipeg Jets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: antti+miettinen

Good news for two prospective Red Wings All-Stars

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Updated with a take on the issue from SI’s Darren Eliot at 5:56 PM: Attention Red Wings fans: If you wish to vote your favorite Wings into the starting lineup of the NHL’s All-Star game, there’s good news: the NHL’s latest updates in their fan balloting place Nickals Lidstrom in fourth place among defensemen’s votes (about 115,000 short of Ottawa’s Erik Karlsson) and Jimmy Howard in eighth place among goaltenders, way up from where he was prior to WRIF’s Meltdown’s campaign [edit: following those started by Winging it in Motown and Nightmare on Helm Street /end edit] to rock the Howard vote. Keep the votes coming!

Update: SI’s Darren Eliot talked about Howard’s status as a ballot snub this afternoon:

Still, while far be it for me to say that any of the goaltending brethren don’t belong on the ballot, Jimmy Howard’s exclusion raises the debate. I mean, Howard leads the NHL in wins, ranks second in goalsagainst and has been the most consistent of all starters thus far. And unlike Brian Elliott and his otherworldly season to date, this is Howard’s third consecutive season posting big numbers for Detroit. In St. Louis, the thought was that Elliott, hopefully, could back up Jaroslav Halak who, by the way, is on the All-Star ballot. Which is kind of the point. Nothing against Halak, but he isn’t even the top performer on his team. His last two seasons as a starter didn’t yield 30 wins, or playoff appearances. Meanwhile, Howard has two-straight 37-win campaigns on which he is building.

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Smart Boards Aid NHL

Blog: Oil Patch By Lisa Brown

With shows like HBO’s 24/7 and the Aquila Production Oil Change, fans have been given a new view of NHL locker rooms, players and the off-ice life. Whether you know it or not, if you have seen either of these shows you have likely seen a new coaching tool; Smart Boards.

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Filed in: | Oil Patch | Permalink

Skinner Not Feeling Well

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Chip Alexander of Canes Now,

Canes forward Jeff Skinner will miss tonight’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs and his return won’t be determined until a medical evaluation in Raleigh.

Skinner, the Canes’ top scorer, missed the Winnipeg game Friday. He is out with an undisclosed injury and has spent the past few days with his family in nearby Markham.

Canes coach Kirk Muller said Sunday that Skinner—who absorbed a big hit from Edmonton’s Andy Sutton in Wednesday’s game—did not have any concussion issues. General manager Jim Rutherford was more cautionary today, saying Skinner is not feeling well and that the team would wait on the medical evaluation before making a decision on his playing status.

“He’s a big part of this team and we’re going to miss him and his skill level,” Muller said after today’s morning skate. “We’ll evaluate him when we get back to Raleigh.”

continue for more on the Canes…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jeff+skinner

Sutter A Fit For The Kings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

After years of painstaking rebuilding, the Kings imagine themselves as a team poised on the brink of playoff success.

Six consecutive years out of the playoffs produced a bundle of top draft choices, including Brayden Schenn, Doughty, Thomas Hickey, Jonathan Bernier, Lauri Tukonen and Dustin Brown. Schenn was traded this summer to Philadelphia in the blockbuster deal for Mike Richards, the signal in L.A. that the push was on.

Instead, they went backward, which is why Murray is on the outside looking in, and Lombardi is on the prowl for a new man behind the bench. Darryl Sutter? In the win-at-all costs NHL, stranger things have happened.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: darryl+sutter

12 Games in 4 1/2 Hours

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

A very busy and compact NHL schedule for tonight.

Early games start just after 7:00pm ET and the last game should end around 11:30pm.

Highlights include Jagr returns to Washington, Wings and Penguins battle (Malkin and Staal are game time decisions along with all the other injuries the Pens have) and Brad Richards faces his old team, the Dallas Stars in New York.

View the full schedule below and make sure the remote is fully charged.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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