Kukla's Korner

I Can Smell The Ice Again

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Journal and Courier,

Down here in Indiana, I know the NHL lockout came and went and many of you took no notice. But for a lifelong Michigan girl like me, it was a year of painful longing. In the Great Lakes State, hockey is nearly a religion. So for our cathedrals to sit empty for months, for our idols to sit idle, for the Zambonis to collect dust, it was a travesty of almost unspeakable proportions. I can tell you when (1997 Stanley Cup finals, some time between games three and four) I fell hard and fast for hockey, but I have never been able to pinpoint exactly what it is that casts such a spell on me. It's the smell of the ice, the sound of glass rattling after a good, hard hit. It's the time I've spent with my father at hockey games. And, I must admit, it's getting to turn around and correct the know-it-all guy and his inaccurate hockey statements and watch the smirk fade from his face as he gets put in his place by a girl. Without my hockey, I felt lost.

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Shootouts and More

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin allen of USA TODAY,

Eliminating tie games through shootouts has turned out to be a winning proposition for the NHL. The league has had 28 shootouts, and goaltenders have had the advantage. Shooters have been successful on 32.4% of attempts. Under the shootout formula, three players from each team alternate taking shots and the team with the most goals wins. If the teams are tied after six tries, each team puts another shooter out until one team scores and the other doesn't.

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Penguins Hoping For Slots

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the NY Sun,

For years, the Penguins have been unable to sway local lawmakers to help fund an arena. "The problem is nobody has any money," Penguins president Ken Sawyer told NHL.com in August. "The Steelers' and the Pirates' and the Eagles' and the Phillies' stadiums were all deals done in advance of 9-11. The economy was strong, the state had a surplus every year, it was a totally different world. The economy changed, so it's a really a question of money. And there's a general public opinion against money for stadiums. In lieu of public opinion, the Penguins are hoping Harrisburg lawmakers grant them a slot machine casino license in the near future. The casino would be built adjacent to a new arena as part of a master plan. Otherwise, the franchise could pull up stakes and move to Kansas City; Portland, Ore.; Houston; or maybe Las Vegas.

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Evaluating The Wings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bill Clement of NBC Sports,

The Red Wings lost only once in October. But six losses in their first ten games in November hinted that Detroit, the reigning President's Trophy winner (109 points), probably won't prove as strong in the regular season as it has in recent years. The Red Wings have some good young players, but overall they are not a young team. But since Detroit has no salary cap room to speak of, it must succeed as is, needing to avoid serious injuries, and looking for one more strong Stanley-Cup run from its veterans. After getting bounced from the playoffs in the first round in 2002-03, and in the second round in 2003-04, Detroit is hoping its strong nucleus fares much better under its new coach and under the new rules in the NHL.

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Shanahan Talks About Fischer Incident

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Brendan was on Mitch Albom's radio show and said Fischer is embarrassed by all of the attention and is also a bit concerned about his privacy, and a little foggy of what really happened. Mitch asked Shanahan if the team or players actually prepare for a situation like last night. Brendan said the players know the team Doctor is right behind the bench at all times, the players were more concerned about clearing the bench area and there really is no preparation on the part of the team for something like last night. While the players were banging on the door to the Zamboni entrance where the ambulance was located to get their attention, the EMS crew was already in action by reaching the bench area through the aisles at ice level or underneath the stands. Shanahan said the TV coverage did not catch all of the action going on, said Jiri was fighting hard for his life while being treated and he has never seen anything like that. Players in the dressing room were sitting in the lockerroom wondering what was going on as much as the fans were. Shanny mentioned there was a bit of pressure to continue the game, but he is very proud of the action of his teammates and the Nashville players who decided not to play.

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Kovalev A Quick Healer

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Canada.com,

Canadiens star Alex Kovalev was trying out two new composite sticks yesterday, each made of steel with a rubber tip, each tucked under an armpit. "I'm not a very big fan of these things," Kovalev said of his crutches, having hobbled into a media mob awaiting him at his dressing-room stall. "I'd rather have just one good stick - the one I've played with all my life." But the reality is that the crafty Russian, author of seven goals and 12 assists in his 18 games, won't have a hockey stick in his hands any time soon. He's on the mend from last Wednesday's arthroscopic surgery to repair a right knee that's been his Achilles heel since he injured it on a stationary bike during training camp.

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Crosby And Ovechkin Teleconference

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The NHL organized a teleconference with AO and SC...pretty insightful read, they both said the right things...

Q. But everybody wanted to fight you. ALEXANDER OVECHKIN: Well, my job I think is to score goals, not fight. I think Shaone Morrisonn, he fights, but I would not fight. (Laughing). Q. You would not fight? ALEXANDER OVECHKIN: Yeah, I can fight, I fight one time in Russia, and I think it's not a big deal, fight. It's a game and you play hard and if you have a chance to fight, why not. Q. When Mario was at his peak and Gretzky was also, it was good for the NHL to have two players like that, excellent players, do you think this is also, good for the League? SIDNEY CROSBY: Yeah, hopefully people will get excited. Like I said before, we played 20 games or 21 games, so to compare to Mario and Gretzky is a little early. I think that we have a lot to prove before we can put ourselves at that level. I can understand having two younger guys who are both playing each other for the first time, I can understand that maybe some people are excited. But to draw that comparison, I don't think that's fitting.

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Update On Fischer’s Condition

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Detroit Red Wings held a press briefing at Joe Louis Arena, Ken Holland and Dr. Tony Colucci were involved in the briefing. Fischer is doing very, very well according to Holland. Most of the Wings organization went to the hospital, including Mr. Ilitch. Ken Holland thanked Dr. Colucci, another Dr. and a few others. Also thanked Nashville for their understanding in canceling the game. The Wings were comfortable about 15 minutes after the incident that Fisher was going to be OK, the refs, Jim Gregory and a few others addressed the team and decided not to play and informed Nashville and they agreed. Still working with the NHL to reschedule the game, not sure if it will start over at this time. Dr. Colucci said he met with Fischer this morning, said he is stable and everything is normal as of now. Fischer was having a convuslion in his opinion, trying to maintain an airway, was breathing on his own, but could not feel a pulse. They started CPR then applied the defib.... which analyzes his body and they applied shock. Continued to do CPR afte still no heart beat, continued CPR until heart beat started. Put him on body board and off to hospital. Had an uneventful evening. Not sure what triggered the convulsion and can't speculate, testing may give an answer. Was asked if he could play again, Dr. could not answer that yet until test results are completed. Fischer remembers his first shift and going to the hospital, and also being in the emergency room. Was asked about his medical history, Holland stated by federal law he could not talk about it, Fischer must disclose that information. the AED monitor was very helpful, the machine reads your body, and actually tells you what to do next. Almost any person can do it, and should be available in any public building. Basically, the Wings must wait for tests to determine next step in recovery. Holland spoke with Jiri's dad, advised him of his condition and the Wings were prepared to fly his family to Detroit as soon as today. Fischer's agent is flying in from Florida today and will organize that will Jiri's dad. Dr. Colucci said the quick response saved his life. Basic CPR and the AED monitor is vital to saving lives. Holland said it is possible the Wings may call up someone from Grand Rapids to replace Fisher on the roster. Dr. was asked if this had happened somewhere else, he responded if CPR and AED not available, we could have a different situation now. He was also asked in his opinion could someone with this problem still play hockey. Dr. Colucci responded until more testing is done, he doesn't know. Please note, this post was not checked for spelling or gramatical errors, wanted to get it out ASAP. update 1:40pm, CBC Story... update 2:36pm, via MLive, notes on press briefing. update 3:11pm, via WJR radio in Detroit,

The team said that Fisher suffered a seizure. Fisher was revived after his heart stopped. He was taken to Detroit Receiving Hospital, where the team says he is in stable condition. Dr. William O’Neill, Head of Cardiology at William Beaumont Hospital, is familiar with Fisher's heart condition. O’Neill says Fisher did not suffer a seizure, but cardiac arrest. “It’s fantastic that he’s alive and he had no major neuralgic damage but I would think that his career as a hockey player is over,” Dr. O’Neill said.
update 3:19pm, via MLive, audio of the press briefing today, you will need Real Player to listen.

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Stick To Hockey

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the OC Register,

He was a Canadian living in Philly now and wanted to celebrate Thanksgiving like a true American. So Todd Fedoruk did exactly that - by nearly launching his house into space. "We didn't read the warnings," the Mighty Ducks left winger said of that day two years ago. "It was like a bomb. Flames were shooting up five feet." Fedoruk and then-teammate Robert Esche intended to deep fry only a turkey. But they almost turned themselves into Philadelphia Fryers. Too much oil. Too close to the house. Too inviting of a setting to not expose the real Butterballs. "We had the pot set up on my old, dried-out wooden deck," Fedoruk said. "It was the perfect kindling."

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Fischer Done?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Bill Watters on Leafs Lunch just said Fischer will not play again, stating the NHL and the Wings cannot allow him to play with his condition. Even if he signs off on any legal action, he is done. update 12:58pm, via Reuters,

Fischer's father said the player's family planned to fly to the United States. "We've already spoken with Jiri by phone, and he will remain in hospital hooked up to some machines to monitor his condition. I expect we will leave (the Czech Republic) to see him as soon as possible," the CTK news agency quoted Fischer's father as saying.

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