Kukla's Korner

European Analyst Needed

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Roy MacGregor of the Globe and Mail,

To have no European voice doing colour commentary, between-period analysis or sitting on one of those endless hockey “panels” – even if he keeps picking at his BlackBerry – is simply ludicrous given what NHL hockey has become.

Last year alone, a Russian, Alexander Ovechkin, won the Hart Trophy as the league’s most valuable player, the Art Ross as its leading scorer, the Rocket Richard as its top goal-getter and the Pearson as the one the players themselves deem best overall – but nowhere will you find a Russian voice to explain how it was that such a machine was built.

Where is there any European analyst to tell us about different training theories, coaching tactics, skill development?


Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Good Game But Still A Loss

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,

Here’s the problem: they didn’t win the game. And another: that wasn’t the real Sharks they played tonight. That was San Jose’s B Team. No Joe Thornton, no Evgeni Nabokov, no Rob Blake. First-line center, starting goalie, arguably the top D-man – not in the lineup.

That’s why I’m not really buying into the “If we play like that down the stretch, we’ll be OK…” company line espoused afterward.

This was another big wasted opportunity tonight. They should have found a way to get something, but kicked it all away. Yes, those third-period goals by San Jose were lucky bounces, but what seemed lost a bit on the players were the things they did before those goals, that allowed them to happen. Both times, the Avs had the puck with good time and space to get it out of the zone, and both times they made soft plays and turned it over. If the puck gets out of the zone, there is no chance for either lucky goal to happen.

read on

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

Chicago Could Be A Tired Team

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tim Sassone of Working the Corners at the Chicago Daily-Herald,

Coach Joel Quenneville would never admit his team is tired – or at least those key players that went to the Olympics.

But there’s no denying Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith, Patrick Kane, Brent Seabrook and even Marian Hossa haven’t been the difference makers they were before they went to Vancouver last month.

After losing 4-2 to 14th-place Columbus on Sunday night, the Hawks have won only five of 13 games since the Olympic break.

Keith is minus-7 since the Olympics and Seabrook minus-4. Toews is minus-8 in those 13 games with 3 goals. Kane is minus-8 with only 3 goals.


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

All Those Phrases

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Chris Zelkovich of the Toronto Star,

A weekend of hockey-watching produced a torrent of mind-numbing phrases. There were references to puck presence, puck support, puck poise, puck pressure and net presence. Outside of an obvious love for alliteration, those who utter these words may have no better idea of what they mean than do the poor saps at home.

On Saturday night, Hockey Night In Canada’s Kevin Weekes talked about the Toronto Maple Leafs’ “neutral zone posture,” which apparently had nothing to with straight spines.

Later in the evening, analyst Garry Galley praised the Florida Panthers’ “comeback capabilities.”

And when did the boards become “the wall” and what the heck is “a saucer pass?”

It’s as if somebody decided that speaking English makes for bad broadcasting. Or maybe it’s that all these guys heard somebody else use these phrases, figured he must know what he’s talking about and followed suit.


Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, | KK Hockey | Permalink

How Much Harder Can They Work?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

For going on 15 years now – or dating back to Brian’s days as the team’s coach – a succession of Sutters has been telling a succession of Calgary Flames teams that the solution to their various and sundry problems was to work harder.

Brent Sutter, the third Sutter brother to man the Flames’ bench in that span, was riffing on that theme again Saturday on the heels of a dismal 5-0 loss to the Boston Bruins in which they frittered away their last best chance of landing a playoff spot in the Western Conference. Yesterday’s 5-3 victory over the Washington Capitals notwithstanding, the Flames are now at a point where they either need to change the message or change the messenger – and given their recent freefall in the NHL standings, the postmortems can start already.

A top-to-bottom evaluation of the organization is in order, beginning with president Ken King, but focusing primarily on general manager Darryl Sutter, whose panic moves before the NHL trading deadline were designed to salvage a season teetering on the brink


Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Another Perspective on Herm 2 Hockeytown

Blog: KK Members Blog By J.J. from Kansas

The Herm 2 Hockeytown weekend has finally come and gone and everybody is no doubt left with a ton of great memories and fantastic feelings about what the hockey community has accomplished in committing to this undertaking. 

If it’s possible, I want to make sure you feel even better about what, exactly, everybody accompllished, even if they only donated money and didn’t join the get together.  Heck, even if you donated money and cheered for the Wild to run over the Red Wings, I want you to know that I can’t thank you enough for what you have done for somebody.

As you no doubt know, the H2H donation drive reached the amount needed to bring Guilherme from Brazil pretty quickly; from there, all donations went to the Childrens Hospital of Michigan.  I donated with little more than a nebulous knowledge that what I was doing for a good cause.

This week, I got to learn first-hand just how much of a good cause it is.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink

Topics For Discussion

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Dowbiggin of the Globe and Mail,

From Hockey Night in Canada’s Hot Stove to NBC’s Pierre McGuire/Mike Milbury combo – with TSN and Sportsnet’s rotating panels in between – there is no lack of gossip and speculation on-air. But a limited roster of subjects dominates the discussion. Head shots, honour codes, referee calls, rule changes, plastic elbow pads, setting up the fore-check. Repeat if necessary. Hockey’s chattering class could use a dose of Ann Coulter to free up the discussion.

Usual Suspects asked some non-media NHL figures – on the promise of anonymity – what subjects are underreported by the gaggle of hot-stove pundits. Here are the most popular omissions or oversights.


Filed in: NHL Media, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

My mother calls me one day and is upset because Matt has supposedly taken off from the Sault with a midway that had been playing for a week or so.  She says she wants me to track him down and bring him back to the Sault, so I pick up the trail and I track him down. I can’t remember which town in Northern Ontario I found him in, but he was living a dream of joining a circus and was working putting up the rides and such.”

-Red Wing great Marty Pavelich on his brother and retired NHL linesman Matt Pavelich.  A great read on Matt from Tom Keenan of the Sault Star.

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Officiating, Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: matt+pavelich

Thornton & Blake Out Tonight For Sharks

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via David Pollak of Working the Corners,

Joe Thornton won’t be in the lineup tonight and is day-to-day with a lower body injury. No estimated time for his return. And, yes, this means his consecutive game streak with the Sharks ends at 379 as Thornton has played every game here since being acquired from Boston in November 2005.

Todd McLellan said he’s still tinkering with his lines, but that Jamie McGinn would be back in action after missing one game.

On defense, Jason Demers has been called up and Rob Blake will sit out. Call it a “maintenance day.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Changes Needed In The Russian Hockey Program

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

So says Sergei Zubov who talked with Elliotte Friedman during the Inside Hockey segment on the HNIC pre-game show.

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: khl, olympics, sergei+zubov

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