Kukla's Korner

Overnight line: Frans Nielsen disusses his decision to join the Wings

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Frans Nielsen's "homecoming" will be front and center when the Red Wings face the New York Islanders this evening (6 PM EST on FSD/MSG+/97.1 FM).

In recent days, Nielsen's spoken with Newsday's Arthur Staple and the New York Times' Alan Kreda regarding his decision to leave the Islanders to sign with Detroit, and this morning, NHL.com's Nicholas J. Cotsonika posted a profile of Nielsen which examines his time with the Islanders and his attempt to find a new home with the Wings:

"I never thought I was going to leave," Nielsen said. "I was pushing my agent hard even before the interview period started to get something done, but for some reason, it dragged out. We couldn't figure it out. I had a chance to talk to other teams. That was the moment where I realized maybe it would be fun to try something new."

Knowing Okposo likely would leave as a free agent (he signed with the Buffalo Sabres), Nielsen listened when the Red Wings called. He liked their history and style of play. He knew Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg. He received a six-year, $31.5 million contract.

"It can be dangerous if you're too comfortable," Nielsen said. "If you're in the same spot too long, you need a new challenge sometimes and to just listen to a new voice in the room, see some new faces. …

"As a hockey player, I think Detroit's just one of those places, it's tough to turn down somehow, with all the tradition, with all the great players that's been here over the years. Overall, it's one of the most popular teams in the world. There was just something about it when I talked to these guys. I was like, 'Wow, this could be a great opportunity for me.' "

Cotsonika continues, and his article's worth your time...

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

The overnight report: Red Wings-Penguins wrap-up and Wings-Isles set-up

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Red Wings' 5-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins stung and stung badly, but Detroit will have the opportunity to put a bit of a stinker behind them as they face the New York Islanders on Sunday evening (6 PM EST on FSD/MSG+/97.1 FM).

With a short flight to Brooklyn and likely no morning skate on Sunday, the Wings will continue a stretch of 3 games in 4 nights hoping to give Frans Nielsen a happy homecoming against the Isles...

But Saturday's loss was a painful one, and while the Red Wings were left to decompress and re-set in a hurry, the Penguins were able to cherish their 5th 3rd-period rally of the season, as they told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Jonathan Bombulie:

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Prospect news: Griffins beat IceHogs; Walleye shut out Mallards; JvP wins; Hronek takes 9 shots

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Of prospect-related note: In the AHL, Matt Lorito had a goal and 2 assists, Eric Tangradi had 2 assists, Mitch Callahan, Louis-Marc Aubry and Kyle Criscuolo scored and Cal Heeter stopped 33 of 34 shots as the Grand Rapids Griffins won 4-1 over the Rockford IceHogs.

The Griffins' website filed a recap:

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Red Wings-Penguins quick take: Coreau valiant as Wings collapse in 3rd

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Detroit Red Wings attempted to assuage an overtime loss to Florida on Thursday as they faced the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday night, starting Jared Coreau opposite the Penguins' All-Star shooters.

The Red Wings should have delivered Jared Coreau a win, but Detroit was unable to hold a 3-1 lead, dropping 4 3rd-period goals en route to a 5-3 loss. The Red Wings' defense and forwards simply lost coverage on several goals and were also incredibly turnover-happy, surrendering puck after puck in a set of unforced errors that afforded the Penguins easy goals and an easy two points in a game they should have won.

It wasn't fair to Coreau and it wasn't fair to the fans at home, frankly. Detroit played its worst 3rd period of the year, and Coreau was more than good enough to win the damn game, but the Wings were insufferable when it counted. This one hurts.

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Video- Coach’s Corner Tonight

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rory Boylen of Sportsnet,

Don Cherry sounded off on the decision and how Gallant was dismissed by the team.

"I've been involved a long time in hockey," Cherry started. "I’ve seen bad firings, I’ve been fired myself. I thought in Colorado it was rather bad. I have never seen anything like this. This is the worst firing in the history of (the NHL).

"They fired the guy after the game, the players are sitting on the bus. It was a great headline I saw ‘dumped at the curb.’

Images of Gallant catching a cab himself after the game went viral on social media and led to attacks against the Panthers for how they prepared for the firing. Gallant wanted to clear up any wrongdoing by the Panthers on that front to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman on Thursday, telling Friedman that he just wanted to get out of there and not wait for the car service the organization had called for.

more plus other topics...

Watch below...

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Montreal Canadiens Could Use John Tavares

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Brenda Kelly of the Montreal Gazette,

How about the notion of John Tavares in a Canadiens jersey? There is all kinds of media chatter that the New York Islanders star is potentially on the trading block given the Isles’ mediocre start and for some reason — most likely the invention of the Loafs-obsessed Toronto hockey media mob — the Maple Leafs are most frequently mentioned as a potential destination for Tavares.

But why not Montreal? Bergevin would have to give up something big to land a guy who scored over 30 goals in each of his last two seasons. So how about giving New York a guy who’s scored over 30 goals in four of his last five seasons?

Exactly. Max Pacioretty for Tavares, with presumably Montreal throwing in someone else to sweeten the deal. Patch is having a sad-sack season, but maybe what he needs is a change of scenery to kick him out of his funk. The one thing for sure is that it’s not clicking for him here and hasn’t for a while.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink

I NOW Consider Brian Lashoff An Elite Player Via Corsi and Pharmacy Statistics

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Jared Comeau makes his NHL debut tonight. That's something I predicted earlier this year, but that it would come as a result of James Tiberius Howard's ascension to the number 1 spot and a Mrazek trade out of Detroit. 

Now Jimmy's dong is hurting and those plans will have to wait.

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Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Evening news: Game-Day Preview videos; on Coreau, Jurco and Jim Paek

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Of Red Wings-related note this evening:

1. Here's the Wings' Game-Day Preview video, which includes comments from coach Blashill, Jared Coreau and Luke Glendening:

Here's the Griffins' Game-Day Preview ahead of the Griffins' battle with the Rockford IceHogs as well:

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Afternoon Line- Steve Yzerman On The 2018 Winter Olympics

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

"I think it's fantastic for our sport.  think it's great for our league that we go, and we're there. I think for all the players it's an honor to be part of the Olympics. I'm hopeful they can work it out. It's great for our league and great for the game."

-Steve Yzerman, GM of the Tampa Bay Lightning on the NHL players participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics.  Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times has more on this topic.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, NHL Talk, NHLPA, Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Worst Corsi Player

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

We are past the quarter pole in the season and it is interesting to look at the best and worst players at this point by some measures.  One interesting measure of players is Corsi or attempted shots while a given player is on the ice in 5 on 5 situations.  The worst Corsi so far this season is a -128 that belongs to Alex Goligoski of the Arizona Coyotes.  Arizona is the worst team by team Corsi at -201.  Since Corsi is a tam dependent statistic it isn't surprising that the worst player is on the worst team. 

Goligoski is second in ice time on the Coyotes.  The only player with more ice time is Oliver Ekman-Larsson.  While Ekman-Larsson has the ability to drive puck possession in the other direction despite weak teammates, Goligoski doesn't.

Goligoski is not the weakest puck possession player in the league.  On a strong team he would post okay puck possession numbers.  In this case his worst Corsi shows the tough situation that he plays in.  Goligoski isn't a good enough player to succeed with a lot of ice time on a team as weak as Arizona.  Few players are.  If Arizona had a few such players they wouldn't be as weak a team.  His Corsi numbers show that Arizona is failing and Alex Goligoski is not a good enough player to turn the tide.

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

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