Kukla's Korner

Red Wings-Sharks Game 4 quick take: the Captain and the crowd

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

A line from Wings coach Mike Babcock’s post-game presser stuck with me and stuck with me good, summarizing the Red Wings’ elimination-staving 4-3 win over the San Jose Sharks on Friday. Here’s what Babcock said to a few members of the press corps about their broaching of the retirement question with Lidstrom:

“You guys did a real good job by talking to him about retirement yesterday, and answered that pretty good.”

Lidstrom scored two goals, the Wings got goals from depth players for the first time in this series, they earned their literal and figurative bounces, their penalty-kill was finally good in limited action and while the Wings stopped skating in the 2nd and appeared gassed at times in the 3rd…The crowd picked their Red Wings up. The crowd at Joe Louis Arena did nothing less than a masterful, Datsyukian job of injecting the Wings with the energy and belief they needed to finally eke out a one-goal victory over the Sharks via a workmanlike goal from Darren Helm, and perhaps Red Wings Nation imbued the Wings with enough self-belief to ensure that Friday night’s game wasn’t the last one at the Joe.

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Pointing At The Washington Players

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Wise of the Washington Post,

The Capitals’ problem is not the coach. That’s not why they got swept in the second round against an, on paper, underwhelming Tampa Bay club.

The problem is the nucleus. Alex Ovechkin and his three co-stars are not ready yet. Some, such as Alexander Semin, may never be.

In hockey, the term “boys” is used affectionately, as in, “Ovie and the boys.” But Ovechkin, Semin, Mike Green and Nicklas Backstrom are not boys anymore. They have been to a few rodeos, and they keep getting bucked off.

The Capitals are becoming the Dallas Mavericks of the NHL. They have become that team with the heavenly regular season and the hellish postseason.

read on

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

Video- Wings Won’t Quit

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Darren Helm with the late goal in the 3rd period to send the series back to San Jose on Sunday night (8:00pm ET).

Sharks still hold a commanding 3-1 lead in the series.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: darren+helm

USA Today’s Kevin Allen: Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom unlikely to retire

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Updated at 6:05 PM: The Detroit Red Wings may or may not be playing in the final game in which Nicklas Lidstrom, Mike Modano, Kris Draper, and Chris Osgood are members of an NHL team’s roster tonight, but USA Today’s Kevin Allen does not believe that Lidstrom will retire, and he employs five reasons to bolster his claim:

1. Although Lidstrom and his wife, Annika, look forward to the time when they can move back to Sweden, they aren’t in a rush to leave Michigan. Both readily concede it will be very difficult to leave a place that has been their home for almost two decades.

2. The relationship between Lidstrom and the Red Wings is probably as close to perfect as you could get. Lidstrom says he enjoys what he terms “fireside chats” with Red Wings general manager Ken Holland at the end of the season about the direction the team is heading. Essentially, the way contract negotiations between Lidstrom and the Red Wings work is Holland explains the Red Wings’ salary cap situation, and they ask Lidstrom what number he can live with. The Red Wings don’t play hardball with their captain. There’s a mutual respect. They understand his importance, and he knows his value.

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Report- Is Hulsizer Saying No To Phoenix?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Mike Ozanian of SportsMoney,

The latest on the fate of the Phoenix Coyotes is that despite the $25 million the city of Glendale agreed to pay the NHL team, which has been owned by the league since 2009, prospective buyer Matthew Hulsizer is getting cold feet.

People familiar with the discussions say that NHL commissioner is adamant the Coyotes stay in Phoenix despite the huge losses the team is suffering. And, say these people, Bettman has told Hulsizer that the league will handle and monetary costs that would result from legal action with the Goldwater Institute over the city paying him $100 million towards the purchase of the team.

But Hulsizer doesn’t want the headache and has gotten cold feet. Some close to the discussions are saying Hulsizer is going to turn his attention to buying the St. Louis Blues.

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

NHL Needs To React To Head Shots

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Howard Bryant of ESPN,

So while we marvel at the raw talent of P.K. Subban, the fury of Alexander Ovechkin, the workmanlike Bruins, soaring Lightning and the driven Canucks, an old, significant tension hovers over the game, reigniting questions about the level of violence in hockey and other contact sports. The speed, size and power of the athletes have outpaced the capacity of the people who play them to protect themselves adequately; at the same time, a draconian macho culture, zeal for corporate profits and unsophisticated attitude toward concussions continue to undermine the potential for reform.

While Crosby’s concussion was being diagnosed as rare in its severity, scientists from Boston University concluded that before former Chicago Bears safety Dave Duerson before committed suicide Feb. 17, he had suffered from the same form of brain damage found in 20 deceased ex-football players. Even as profits soar, empirical evidence builds that the game of football can kill you.

Both sports suffer under the same issue, but there is a distinct difference: The NFL’s problem with injuries is inherent.

more


Just a quick note of thanks to Alanah for basically running KK for the last 30 hours while I attended to the funeral of my cousin Jerry.

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Who’s Favored?

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Two 3-0 series are up tonight.  From Sports Interaction, today’s odds of success or failure…

San Jose at Detroit

Moneyline
• San Jose   +120
• Detroit   -140

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Belated Red Wings-Sharks game-day updates: No lineup changes for Detroit

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Updated 5x with Chris Chelios on WDFN at 6:09 PM: As the Detroit Red Wings and San Jose Sharks prepare to face off tonight (7 PM EDT, Versus/TSN/WXYT), MLive’s Ansar Khan reports that the Wings have chosen to stick with the lineup which Mike Babcock employed on Wednesday, which means that Mike Modano might spend the final game of his career as a healthy scratch:

“Lineup’s on the board every morning,’’ Modano said. “So you just take a peek at it on the way to having a coffee.’‘

Forward Johan Franzen (left ankle) and defenseman Brian Rafalski (knee) did not skate this morning but both will play. Coach Mike Babcock said there will be no lineup changes. So Drew Miller will be scratched for the second game in a row. Modano is coming to grips with the fact that he likely has played his final game.

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Is Ryan Miller An Untouchable?

Blog: The Sabres Observer By @DaveDavisHockey

From Mike Schopp of WGR-550,

Once again, many of the big-name goaltenders are nowhere to be found by Round 2 of the NHL playoffs. One listener tells me that of the top 18 goalies ranked by salary-cap hit, only two (Luongo and Thomas) are still playing. Their teams were 1-2 in the regular season in goal differential, which tells us that they have good goaltending for sure but also a lot more.

There’s no knowing whether or not Vancouver or Boston would be in the same position—one game away from home ice in the conference finals—with lesser goalies. But it’s certainly possible. The last team to win the Stanley Cup whose strength was goaltending was the 2003 New Jersey Devils.

Now we come to the Sabres, about whom so many people say that their strength is goaltending that I might as well just call it a fact. Their goaltending is hardly stupendous, but if goaltending isn’t their strength then I don’t know what is. No other element of the team had much of a playoff series, I know that much.

More and more fans seem to have bought into my position from years back, that signing Ryan Miller long-term was not the brightest way to build the team. Now, some of those fans are ready to trade Miller and have that amount to a similarly paid player at another position.

continue reading

Filed in: | The Sabres Observer | Permalink
 

Reality Might Be Failure, But Neither Is Guaranteed

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

This is no eulogy. Not yet.  And even if the circumstances called for it, I’d leave that for vultures, trolls and search engines.

But optimism isn’t the answer right now either.  Reality is.  Like it or not there’s something chemically wrong with this team as it stands right now. It’s not physical. It’s wiring and it’s devastating.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

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