Kukla's Korner

Our Last Weekend Without Hockey

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Cathal Kelly of the Toronto Star,

This is the last Saturday of your lazy summer half-life. Next Saturday, you begin your three-dimensional Canadian hockey life.

So stop all the clocks. Cut off the phone. Give the dog a juicy bone. Bring out the puck and let the players come....

It’s true that the players have already come. They’re in the best shape of their lives. Honest. They all said that. But next Saturday they stop doing the art project that represents what summer is — circling miniature orange cones just for the hell of it — and start playing games. It’s ersatz pre-season hockey for a while, but think of it as the sorbet that cleanses the palate after the playoffs.

They’ll be at it for nine months. They’ll play the Winter Olympics in the middle (that quadrennial moment when Canada most closely approaches a monoculture).

If you’re in the middle of something, start wrapping it up. Otherwise, you’re going to discover it half-finished under a couch cushion next June.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Kesler Responds To Doubters Of The Canucks

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jason Botchford of the Vancouver Province,

Everyone keeps waiting for fireworks from John Tortorella. They got them instead from Kesler.

“To be honest, I don’t listen to that shit,” said Kesler, when asked about people who don’t think the Canucks are one of the top teams in the NHL.

“That’s what it is. It’s shit. We believe in ourselves in the dressing room. All those negative comments we’re not even going to …

“To be honest, I shouldn’t have even answered that question. It’s shit.”

Kesler did show up at training camp healthy this year. He says it’s the first time in two years. But he’s also got a a chip stapled to his shoulder he’s not letting go of any time soon.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+kesler

Blue Jackets Extend Jared Boll For Three More Years

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

COLUMBUS, OHIO --- The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed right wing Jared Boll to a three-year contract extension through the 2016-17 National Hockey League season, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced today.  As is club policy, terms were not disclosed. 

“Jared Boll has invested a great deal of himself in this organization and community and we are very happy that he will continue to be an important part of our hockey club,” said Kekalainen.  “He brings toughness, determination and a great work ethic to our team and has become an important leader for us both on and off the ice.”

Boll has spent his entire professional career with the Blue Jackets, registering 24 goals and 28 assists for 52 points with 963 penalty minutes in 388 games.  He ranks second on the club in career penalty minutes (Jody Shelley – 1,025) and is fourth in games played (Rick Nash – 674, David Vyborny – 543, Rostislav Klesla – 515), leading all current players in both categories.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jared+boll

Seven-Year Deal For Pietrangelo In St. Louis

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

ST. LOUIS – St. Louis Blues President of Hockey Operations and General Manager/Alt. Governor Doug Armstrong announced the club has agreed to terms on a seven-year deal for defenseman Alex Pietrangelo.

“We’re excited to have Alex in the fold for the next seven years as he will continue be a key component of our franchise,” said Armstrong. “He is an elite defenseman in this league and will be for years to come.”

Pietrangelo, 23, dressed in 47 games last season, leading the Blues’ defense with 24 points (five goals and 19 assists) while ranking 13th in ice time per game (25:06) among all National Hockey League (NHL) defensemen.

In the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Pietrangelo posted two points (one goal, one assist) in six games while tying for second on the club with a +2 rating.


Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+pietrangelo

Afternoon Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ed+snider

Video- Is It The Stick Or The Person Using The Stick?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: patrick+kane

Kiprusoff To The HHOF?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Adam Proteau of The Hockey News answers some questions from readers...

Miikka Kiprusoff: Hall of Fame worthy or not?

Not. Definitely not. Yes, Kiprusoff has a Vezina Trophy on his resume, but he simply did not function at a high enough capacity for a lengthy stretch of time to warrant Hall of Fame consideration. When you look at his best years (including Calgary’s run to the Stanley Cup final in 2004) Kiprusoff was clearly at the top of his game. However, his save percentage dropped every year after that until the 2009-10 campaign and the Flames never won a single playoff series again during his tenure. He earned a special place in Calgary’s collective heart, but he isn’t an all-time great.

read on for 3 more questions regarding outdoor games, no-touch icing and going over the salary cap...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikka+kiprusoff

Gambling the Franchise?

Blog: KK Hockey By Da lil Guy

I'd like to introduce you to a new KK blogger, Da lil Guy.

I am sure the name sounds familar to some of you, he is active in the comment sections throughout the KK blogs and has been a member for over 3 years.

His team is the Ottawa Senators but will be blogging on different NHL topics too. -Paul

Eugene Melnyk wasn’t prepared to meet Daniel Alfredsson’s contract demands early this summer, and he has a lot of Sens fan’s grumbling about his unwillingness (or inability) to spend to the NHL’s lowered salary cap.  Where he does appear to be going ‘all in’, though, is in a growing fight with the City of Ottawa over the location of a proposed casino.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: da+lil+guy

Aim For The Five-Hole

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Chris Johnston of Sportsnet,

Truth be told, this is no way to start a battle to become the No. 1 goalie of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Jonathan Bernier readily admits that he’s allowed a steady stream of pucks through his legs over the last month – “Plenty … a lot,” he said – while adjusting to the new shrinking standard of goalie pads that will be introduced around the NHL this season.

As you might imagine, the changes aren’t very popular among the goaltending fraternity. Each of them has had the height of his pad reduced by between one and three inches as part of new regulations designed to help increase scoring.

Goalies are expected to become particularly vulnerable through the five-hole, where the top of their pads will cover much less space when they drop down to make a save.

“I changed my style a little bit,” said Bernier. “I think everyone’s going to have to adjust. Everyone is starting from scratch.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jonathan+bernier

Pronger Considered A Player, Can He Also Be A Scout?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tim Panaccio of CSNPhilly,

Chris Pronger walks a fine line between working for the Flyers in a scouting capacity and sitting in on meetings with management, all the while being a dues-paying member of the NHLPA.

Such is the life of a former player, struck down by post-concussion syndrome, and living between two worlds -- permanently disabled player and club scouting.

“I have yet to be told what my duties are,” said Pronger, who still suffers from headaches from an ocular concussion, and likely will for the rest of his life.

“As still an active player and a dues-paying member of the [NHLPA] and all that, I know my role will be somewhat limited still in what I can and can’t do," Pronger said on Thursday at Flyers training camp.

Pronger is not an active player in the true sense. He can’t retire without harming the Flyers' salary infrastructure. Under the CBA, they would be stuck with his near-$4.9 million cap hit for the remaining four years of his contract without the ability to place him on LTIR.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: chris+pronger

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