Kukla's Korner

Alex Ovechkin makes a kind-of-sort-of declaration about winning Game 6

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

According to NHL.com’s Ben Raby, Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin didn’t exactly deliver a guarantee of winning tonight’s game against the New York Rangers, but he certainly suggested that the Capitals will do everything possible to extend the series:

“You don’t want the season to start over for next year,” Ovechkin said. “And you don’t want season be ended tonight. It’s going to be do-or-die. Right now everybody knows and everybody understands we just can’t go home right now. I don’t think we deserve to end the season. Everybody knows, I think, we [have a] good hockey club. We beat the Stanley Cup champion in Game 7 at home. … Last game they got a little luck… Tonight is going to be different game and tonight is going to be a much different atmosphere.”

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Friedman ponders the fractionation of the Blackhawks’ coaching and management

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

The CBC’s Elliotte Friedman offers a “30 Thoughts” column jam-packed with scuttlebutt regarding the Flyers’ ouster, the Predators’ free agents, Montreal’s coaching search and at least ten other topics, but his main focus involves why he believes the Chicago Blackhawks allowed Joel Quenneville to fire Mike Haviland—and Friedman believes that it comes down to a fractionation within the Blackhawks’ coaching and managerial staff after the team had to shed a third of its roster after its 2010 Stanley Cup win, and lost to Vancouver in 2011:

More was demanded. And, when it didn’t happen, the pressure increased and different factions emerged. There were accusations of “spying.”

Disagreements, too. Apparently, one involved where Patrick Kane should play - wing or centre. Another involved John Scott. (Scott was traded to the Rangers at the deadline, after internal debate about his spot on the team.) Power-play philosophy clearly was an issue. And there was something else.

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What About The Rinaldo Hits From Last Night?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kerry Fraser of TSN,

It is also true that Rinaldo approached Volchenkov from the middle slot with speed. While this “distance traveled” is language used to determine charging under Rule 42, Zac Rinaldo created a legal approach when he glided a remaining number of feet prior to delivering his check on Volchenkov.  The contact Rinaldo made on Volchenkov would also be considered legal since Rinaldo’s hands and elbows did not come beyond an acceptable level nor did he make contact with Volchenkov’s head. With the “glide factor” eliminating a charging infraction this was just a good, hard body check; albeit with added incentive and purpose after Schenn was hit!

A bit of a pattern develops here when Zac Rinaldo took out Dainius Zubrus, another payback recipient, with a low bridge hip check (video link) just above the knees. While kneeing was initially reported on the call, interference appears on the official score sheet as Pierre Maguire of NBC correctly pointed out at the time. This was a needless and dirty play.  The puck was in the opposite corner of the rink as Zubrus cut around the net and was low bridged by Rinaldo. I can appreciate the fact that the refs would not want to put the game on the line by assessing a five-minute major penalty for clipping even though Zubrus appeared shaken up on the play and was attended to.

more and watch both hits below…

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Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: zac+rinaldo

Paying For The Coyotes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Brad Parks of the Wall Street Journal,

On Monday, the Phoenix Coyotes advanced to the NHL’s Western Conference finals for the first time since moving to the desert in 1996.

But here in Glendale, the Phoenix suburb where the Coyotes play, not everyone is cheering. “If you need a poster boy for how to pour your whole budget down the drain of professional sports, Glendale is the place,” says Glendale resident Ken Jones, a retired construction superintendent, who calls the team a financial albatross.

By any measure, professional hockey in the valley of the sun has been an expensive proposition and the cost is falling heavily upon Glendale. The Coyotes play at Jobing.com Arena, a monument to the NHL’s expansion to cities in the Southern and Western U.S. As in Atlanta and South Florida, hockey has failed to captivate Arizonans, a problem that culminated three years ago in the franchise filing for bankruptcy. Among NHL clubs this season, the Coyotes ranked last in attendance.

continued

thanks to a KK member for the pointer…

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KK- Thanks Everyone

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I want to thank everyone for you well wishes and concern.

As a diabetic, I’ve learned to expect the unexpected.

Imagine seeing a psychedelic light show 24/7, that’s what happened to me.

When I first discovered I was a diabetic six years ago, this “light show” was how I was introduced to the disease.

Yesterday it came back, but only in one eye.  So with the help of proper medication, it is resolved and I hope gone forever.

The picture below is close to what I was seeing, even with my eye closed, but it was in much more detail, almost a 3D type of detail too.

image

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

Is There A Power Struggle In Chicago?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adam L. Jahns of the Chicago Sun-Times,

“That’s something I want to put to bed right from the outset,” Quenneville said. “I love everything about our situation here in Chicago.”

But that doesn’t mean there won’t be more discontent, especially if Quenneville doesn’t get the final say in who replaces Haviland. If director of player development Barry Smith is thrust upon Quenneville again, more problems might arise.

With Quenneville’s reputation and résumé, management’s decision to send in Smith, a trusted assistant of senior adviser Scotty Bowman when he coached, to help the power play during the season was frowned upon by many around the league.

Sources also said Quenneville and Smith argued before the end of the regular season, prompting Smith to stop assisting before the playoffs. The front office, though, still wanted Smith around.

“I feel like it’s going to be my decision,” Quenneville said. “I haven’t put [Smith] on my list. I don’t have a list drawn up here at all right now. I don’t even want to speculate on any list. That process, I want to keep confidential.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The ultimate ‘hockey cave’

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Red Wings prospect Tomas Tatar admitted that he’d never played hockey in a cave before coming to Helsinki to take part in the World Championships, where it turns out that Hartwall Arena’s practice facility out-does any other “man cave” in the world.

Per IIHF.com’s Andrew Podnieks:

“The Rock” can mean many things to many people. In Canada, it’s a friendly term for St. John’s, Newfoundland. For Hollywood, it refers to Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, the wrestler-cum-actor (or something). There’s the Rock of Gibraltar and there’s a solid defenceman (“he’s a rock back there”) and to any woman of material ambitions the most important part of marriage is getting a “nice rock” for her finger. There’s rock ‘n’ roll and rock-a-bye baby and various other uses of the word.

The practice arena in Helsinki is part of Hartwall Arena. Sort of. That is, it’s all part of the same building. Sort of. In other words, you can go from the main arena to the secondary one without having to go outside. Sort of.

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

One Team Will Lose Tonight

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

Teams of destiny create their own. It’s time for the Rangers to do that tonight. It’s time for the Rangers to lay down a Game 6 hammer on the Capitals and put an end to this conference semifinal.

This isn’t as much about creating breathing space before the Eastern finals as it is about playing with authority, not allowing a vulnerable opponent to get off the mat and, ultimately, showing the finish required of champions.

continued

from Katie Carrera of Capitals Insider,

No matter what they’ve faced throughout these playoffs, the Capitals’ mood in practices or pregame skates has been light and loose. Even before Game 7 against Boston in the first round, the dressing room was loud with players cracking jokes among themselves and chirping reporters.

Following Wednesday’s morning skate, though, the Capitals had a more serious and reserved demeanor heading into Game 6 and facing elimination against New York.

“You don’t want season to start over for next year and you don’t want season be ended tonight,” Alex Ovechkin said. It is “gonna be do or die. Right now everybody knows and everybody understands we just can’t go home right now.”

continued

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

Just In Case You Wanted To Know

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Ted Leonsis of Ted’s Take,

He has played in 49 playoff games. He has scored 29 goals; and has 29 assists. For 58 points –in 49 games, over the last 5 seasons. A very productive 49 games indeed.

Alex is now third on the all time playoff scoring list for the Caps – in goals scored, he passed Dale Hunter and is now one behind Peter Bondra who scored 30 goals in the playoffs during his career.

Just setting some of the record straight here as to Alex Ovechkin’s performance in the playoffs to date.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+ovechkin

Afternoon Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I am somewhat stunned by the drastic turn of events with the Nashville Predators.  Not just their two curfew delinquents in Alexander Radulov and Alexei Kostitsyn.  But, their play in general in their series against the

Los Angeles Kings

Phoenix Coyotes and the new found sentiment that that this team that was astutely put together, might be on the verge of crumbling.  Not only might Radulov and Kostitsyn go elsewhere (possibly to the KHL) but this “one happy family” identity is taking a hit with thoughts that both Ryan Suter and Shea Weber will look to play elsewhere next season.  Weber may by the Norris Trophy winner but his second round play was substandard.

-Gord Stellick of CBC where you can read more NHL topics.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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