Kukla's Korner

J.R. Feels He Can Dominate

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Arizona Republic,

"I'm not going to bail because things are bad," Roenick said. "I'm committed to this city, this team and Wayne (Gretzky). . . . I love this team. I would never ask for a trade or retire in mid-season. I couldn't do that to my players. That would be too much of a huge copout. If I couldn't do it physically, that's a different story. But I feel I'm at the point where I can dominate a hockey game with the puck."
In the same story, Don MacLean back in the NHL...

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More Changes Needed

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Noonan of the News Journal,

...But not now, because the fans know that this season is over even though it really just began. The last-place Flyers pretty much declared this to be a wasted year when they made those major changes just eight games into an 82-game schedule, and all of those empty seats on Thursday night confirmed it. So did the Wachovia Center's public address announcer -- during the first period, he urged the fans to buy tickets to upcoming games and be on hand "as a new era begins.'' But this isn't a new era, just a continuation of the old era with a couple of new faces. Heck, even those new faces aren't really new. And that's what the Flyers need -- new faces and new ideas and a new approach. That's why the first thing they should do is the same thing the Phillies did last year -- hire a proven general manager.
read on

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Wild Point At Fernandez

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Pioneer Press,

Every time the subject came up after Thursday's practice, Wild goalie Manny Fernandez was part of the discussion. Players and coaches pointed to Fernandez as the No. 1 reason the Wild lead the NHL in penalty killing, even though an improved defense has been just as crucial during the team's 8-1 start. "Our defense has been great back there, but it's also been a lot of goaltending," said Brian Rolston, the team's leading scorer. "And our guy is one of the best in the league."
continued

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Rare Sighting

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from CanWest News Service via Canada.com,

It was a hockey player, but a strange one. He possesses explosive speed, an equally dynamic shot, the ability to drive Colorado Avalanche defencemen through the glass and pucks into the net while prostrate, Ringo Starr's haircut from 1963, a double-black-diamond ski slope for a nose and a disarming smile through which he tells bad jokes in two languages. Witnesses in Burnaby, a suburb of Vancouver, were initially confounded by the subject's sudden appearance, but investigators were able to identify him as Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals. Naturalists were mystified how such a creature made it to the West Coast to play the Vancouver Canucks tonight at GM Place, but the migration was apparently caused by an imbecilic, short-sighted National Hockey League schedule that calls for players from the Eastern Conference to be spotted in each Western city only once every three years.
more

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Excuses

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Chicago Sun-Times,

Ruutu, who went through Thursday's workout, might be recovered enough from a knee sprain to play Monday at Philadelphia. Yawney blamed the media for dwelling too much on the injuries, suggesting his healthy players could be using them as an excuse for poor play. ''You guys give them all the excuses in the world, with the people who are missing,'' Yawney said, ''but the fact of the matter is, this is the NHL and you're paid to play. It's a privilege to play in the National Hockey League. It's not a player's right.'' That was the point Yawney hoped he made with Thursday's workout.
read on

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G’day Ducks

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jeff Miller of the OC Register,

The Ducks' guest made his way around the locker room, shaking hands and posing for pictures and pretty much doing exactly what every other such visitor does on every other such visit. Except for one thing. Nery Romero talked differently. No one in this team's history, in fact, talked quite like he did, and this is a franchise with Finns, Russians and those burdened with the most cursed of accents - yes, New Englanders. "When I heard him speak, 'Wow,'" rookie forward Ryan Shannon said. "I knew he had come from a long ways away."
continued

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Wilson Not Happy With Two Losses

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the San Francisco Chronicle,

A two-game losing streak will signal changes for the Sharks. That's what coach Ron Wilson predicted 15 minutes after San Jose scored the first goal of the game but lost a one-goal decision on the road for a second straight night. "Some guys are just not working hard enough," Wilson said. "We've got a few extra players and we'll make some changes. We've gone with the same lineup and maybe some guys are feeling a little comfortable about that."
continued

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Tucker Declines Invitation

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Toronto Star,

As they waited for the puck to drop, Neil leaned into Tucker, going almost nose-to-nose with his rival, incessantly yapping. It looked like a drill sergeant getting in the face of a young recruit. Neil's essential message was, if you have a problem with the Senators, come to me — not a perceived lightweight like Eaves. "I asked him to fight and he didn't oblige me," Neil said later. "After that, I just went out and played hockey. I just let him know he can't be going after a guy like Patty Eaves." Tucker said he tried not to listen to Neil, but it was tough because the Senator was right in his ear.
more

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Perreault Talks Cut Off In Ottawa

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

Senators GM John Muckler confirmed a Sun report that he has called off talks with unrestricted free-agent C Yanic Perreault. "I just have a lot of questions and I'm not sure that's the right move at this time," said Muckler.
Garrioch has a look at Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli too...

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Expect The Unexpected

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Allen at USA TODAY,

If you believe that climbing to the top in the new National Hockey League salary cap world has become a daunting challenge, then it's logical to conclude that remaining on top, or staying even highly competitive, will be next to impossible. With parity upon us and a salary cap guaranteeing that stars can't be stockpiled, it seems likely that over the next five or six seasons that each of the NHL's 30 teams will miss the playoffs at least once.... After 14 months with the new salary cap, what we know is that if you like the steady, predictable, twirl of a carousel, the salary cap world isn't for you. If you like the dramatic dips, twists and speedy climbs of the roller coaster, you are going to love the new NHL because it's going to be a wild ride over the next few seasons.
more

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