Kukla's Korner

Wild Now Know Ducks

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Pioneer Press,

Here’s the upshot of an otherwise disappointing first-round loss: new rivalry, new hero and newfound respect for a couple of Wild players. There also should be the realization that a lot of work remains to be done. The team has to get bigger. The guys were worn to the nub by the end of Game 5.
At least the Wild have found a blood rival for next year. In a season filled with faceless opponents and emotionless games, the Ducks will be an exception.
The Ducks earned the right to become the team Minnesota loves to hate. People will circle their calendars for next season’s quack-ups at the Xcel Energy Center. It will be the biggest thing since Todd Bertuzzi was with the Vancouver Canucks.

read on

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Anaheim Ducks, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Trading Ward Was Turning Point For Rangers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

Just prior to the deadline, Sather made his move, sending Ward to the Bruins for Paul Mara, in whom the Blueshirts had been interested for weeks.
It was a deal that improved the Rangers on the ice, with Mara providing a second power-play-unit point option Ward did not. Beyond that, it was a trade that purified the atmosphere. And, most critically, it was a trade that solidified Jagr’s status as captain and cemented the mutual bond of trust and commitment between No. 68 and the hierarchy.
It was the fork in the road for the Rangers, who have followed their leader on the path to a sweep of Atlanta and the second round of the playoffs.

more

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Panic Series

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Reading the different forums and blogs on the Wings/Flames series, it has been a panic theme after every game.
Just remember what I said after the Wings went up 2-0, it is not a series until a road team wins.  Still hasn’t happened and it may not.
The home ice may actually come in play for this series.

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Calgary Flames, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Win Or Go Home

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Tennessean,

“You are a little bit (frustrated) in the fact that you added some pieces that you felt could get over the hump here,” Trotz said. “But for the most part the pieces that we have put in have had a better effect on this team, no question.
“San Jose might not admit it, but it’s a lot harder than they probably expected it would be based on the two teams and based on last year. They are fortunate right now … they have played very well.
“They are a solid hockey club and an elite hockey club, and I feel we are too. So we have to get a positive result, and if we do we will see what happens.”

more

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Nashville Predators, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Wirtz Worried About NHLPA Direction

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rick Westhead of the Toronto Star,

Now, more than 40 years on, Wirtz says he’s poised to sever ties to the NHL charter member. One of the most vilified owners in sports – he’s been nicknamed “Dollar Bill” for his alleged thriftiness when it came to player salaries – Wirtz says he’s worried about who the NHL Players’ Association hires as its next leader.
After losing $31 million (all figures U.S.) this season and $191 million over the past 10 on the beleaguered Blackhawks, Wirtz said if the players union hires someone cut out of the mould of Bob Goodenow as executive director, he’ll hang up a for-sale sign on the Blackhawks.

read on

Filed in: NHLPA, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Brad May Sorry

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the OC Register,

“People may not read this properly, and I swear it’s from my heart, from who I am,” May said. “I hope Kim Johnsson is OK. I never in one moment wanted to hurt somebody and take an opportunity of them playing away. I hope that I haven’t put him in a terrible or a bad or a tough situation. He wants to play hockey as much as I want to play hockey. He wants to win like I do.
“I respect Kim Johnsson. I respect his teammates. I respect (Minnesota left wing) Derek Boogaard, who said that I have no respect for people. I do have respect for people. We’re playing hard for our teams. So I respect the other team, and I understand their animosity and anger toward me. I accept that.”

more

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Anaheim Ducks, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

You Make The Call

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Newsday,

Coming on the heels of a no-goal call that was overturned in the Sabres’ favor in Game 3, Campbell figured tempers might be running hot in the Islanders’ front office, where it’s an article of faith that NHL headquarters is anti-Islanders. “We understand the Islanders think they were hard done by,” Campbell said Thursday in a telephone interview.
“We understand Garth Snow is a rookie general manager, and Ted Nolan has to play the cards he’s got. When things don’t go the way you want, we’d understand they want to play that game. But at the end of the day, we’re looking at a level playing field ... I tell the managers every year that a controversial area is goal reviews. When you have two happen in your home arena, they’re going to say they got screwed.”

read on

For another point of view- David Kolb at MSG Network,

A few minutes later we learned that “The War Room” in Toronto said that it was the on-ice official that called it a non-goal, as referee Mike Leggo claimed rule 78.5 (ix) was the basis for his decision.
Rule 78.5 (ix) states, When a goalkeeper has been pushed into the net together with the puck after making a save … the goal is disallowed.
Problem here is A) the puck was loose before contact was made with Miller; and B) It wasn’t an Islander player that slammed into Miller, it was clearly #21 Drew Stafford.

more

added 8:04am, Friday April 20th, IF you haven’t seen the video of the disputed Witt non-goal, here it is...

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

No Quitters On The Island

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Caldwell at the New York Times,

“There are no quitters in here — there’d better not be,” left wing Ryan Smyth said in the dressing room.
The Islanders face elimination from the Stanley Cup playoffs, and the end could come Friday, when they face the deeper and more talented Sabres in Game 5 of a best-of-seven series in Buffalo. The Sabres lead three games to one.
Islanders Coach Ted Nolan told his team to forget about the negative aspects of Wednesday’s 4-2 loss, in which a potential game-tying goal by defenseman Brendan Witt with 1 minute 42 seconds left was waved off.

more

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Dominik Hasek: He’s Just “Different”

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Allan Maki at the Globe & Mail,

Osgood, however, wasn’t sure what he was in for when he rejoined the Red Wings last season only to see Hasek return a year later. Osgood had heard the stories of how the goalie once hailed as the Dominator was . . . different. “Not weird,” Osgood said. “Different.”
Of course, anyone who has followed the National Hockey League the past 10 years knows exactly how different Hasek can be. He used to flop to the ice if even the breeze from a passing forward so much as ruffled him.

continued…

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Ill Fated At Best…Live Blogging Game 4

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

0004: Let's not kid ourselves. There is going to be plenty of talk about 5-3's and hooking calls and generally poor officiating. But here's the bottom line: the Wings got into a wide open game with the Calgary Flames, of all teams, and couldn't capitalize on the opportunity. Kiprusoff was fantastic, but not so good that he stole this game. Hasek, the Wings, the Wings power play and penalty kill gave this game away. Back to Detroit on Saturday and every ounce of pressure, every ghost of the last four seasons, rests on the Wings' shoulders. Playoff stress, what a surprise. I'll be hopping a plane tomorrow so expect postings to be minimal until late tomorrow night. 2344: Just happened to get a look at Zetterberg as he joined the second PK unit, three strides off the bench and pulled up. He's hurting. 2330: You don't spend the entire year in the bottom third of the league in PP and expect it to improve in the playoffs. Pathetic display with the man-up this game, this series. Almost makes you wish Jason Williams was bringing the puck up...almost. 2321: I just got my first opportunity to watch Teamdub's first intermission video tribute. Disturbing, yet classic in a raw, unedited A2Y kind of way. A recap: his girlfriend pretending to like hockey, but not afraid to flash the A2Y readers/viewers if it means distracting us from the antics of her boyfriend. Good on ya. Wing action figures, dogs, a midwestern garage and alcohol. All Abel to Yzerman staples. Check it out in the comment section. Teamdub, you are the man. 2316: Does anyone remember the days when playoff hockey meant the whistles were pulled out conservatively? The Wings have been killed by penalties thus far, butchered. Hasek's call, while he did embelish, was total crap. Lidstrom's and Datsyuk's were worse. But it's not the Wings getting the shaft, it's both teams. Of the 9 penalties called, 6 have been hooking. 2307: I've decided to increase my alcohol intake by 1/3. Statistically, and that's what we're all about here at A2Y...hard facts buttressed by stats, there can be no valid reason that shouldn't work on a variety of levels. Tell me a convicted man slaughterist couldn't kick the ass of anyone named Dion. 2301: For those those of you not reading the comments the prevailing phrase is "FU Dom". Who just went off hurt? Amazing play by Chelios to clear that puck then draw the penalty on Jarmoe. Injured Wing was Lebda, Wing on PP...nifty, disjointed as ever. 2239: Franzen now playing with Malts and Draper. Good, good line. Jimmy D must have come down to the lockerroom at intermission and slurred his way through some sort of motivational lecture. 2214: Taking a break for more beer. I guess we saw all this coming, eh? Fast paced, sloppy Dom...real sloppy. He looks bad. And you can go ahead and admit that you're wondering what the hell he's doing skipping the morning skate/practice if he isn't hurt? Bertuzzi looks, obviously, energized. Win this series and we have ourselves a real factor the rest of the way. 2207: Holy schnikes. Someone's healthy and happy. Welcome to the official Todd Bertuzzi return party. Anyone wanna bet that we see shades of the old violent 44 tonite? 2157: What? I'm sorry..what? Was that Bobby Lang to Don'tsnoozeonme? My, my...what a different dynamic that may have added. Great line Mikey boy. Hasek better have the game of his life tonite, because as Matt said, he owes us one. Make that two. 2152: Well, this is going REAL well. Our goalie's insane, but that was a BS call. Great play by Lilja wasted. I think the best part of this game thus far is that I haven't lost all control of my bodily functions. I truly view that as a moral victory. 2145: Encouraging start from Samuelsson on the point. One blocked shot that led to a rush, then a giveaway in our own end that took some sort of magic bullet route to the net that almost beat Hasek. I said earlier today that I'm lighting the torches if he doesn't come through tonite, and I stand by that one. I guess Hudler's the Wings' Kenny Rogers, only available for home playoff games. 2139: Holy Christ. Versus, you suck. we join 2 minutes in. Why? How does that happen. You rat f&* pieces of trash. Thanks Gary. 2120: I've decided I'm now the empire's pre-eminent Live Blogger. I know AlanaH has held the title for a long time. But change is good, and change has come. I now hold the title. Thank you. Here's what I worry about at the moment: Hasek's health, Teamdub's threat of a video tribute from his garage, Bertuzzi's mildness, Samuelsson's ineptitude, Babcock's state of mind, Lilja's streak of luck. More to follow. 2115: it would appear the aforementioned issues with Versus!!!!!!!!! won't be a significant problem. Roughly 9 left in Ottawa and approximately 20 left until faceoff in Cattletown. And it would appear I've lost a Stanley Cup finalist...Pittsburgh's done. The MSM bloggers are silent, so there is no clue as to whether the lines published by anyone with a Commodore 64 earlier today are going to be used or not. We can most likely expect the breathtaking continued presence of one M. Samuelsson though, and that makes me sad.

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

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