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Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Ah, hockey all day and night.  Al times are ET.

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Kitchen Gave Everything He Had

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the News-Democrat,

Still, Kitchen felt he was up to the challenge and blamed no one but himself for the team’s failure to turn things around.
“I’m not going to throw the blame anywhere,” he said. “I didn’t get the job done and I’m the coach. I’ve got to find different ways, and that’s my responsibility.”
Kitchen ran a practice on the day he was fired, still looking for improvement.
“I gave everything I had and I wouldn’t change too many things that I did,” he said. “I couldn’t find a way, that’s probably the one regret I do have. But I know it wasn’t from a lack of work or anything like that.”

more

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Why Not

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Still, Fitzpatrick might be the perfect player to bestow the designation on, given the fans’ response in the first season that voting has gone exclusively online. In the first 12 days of voting, the number of votes had exceeded all votes in 2003-04 by about 10 percent.
Some will suggest that Fitzpatrick’s potential presence in Dallas somehow denigrates the institution. But with all due respect to All-Stars living and dead, people, it’s the All-Star Game. This is an event about closing the gap between fans, players and sponsors, not about any meaningful competition. It’s a schmooze-fest of the highest order. Nothing more, nothing less.
And given that, surely there’s a place for Fitzpatrick here.

more... plus a look at J.R…

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A “Grinder” Starts Scoring

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Columbus Dispatch,

Fritsche was a grinder, said NHL scouts and some folks in the Blue Jackets organization, a good skater with a big heart, but lacking the hands, the shot or the creativity to suggest he’d ever score many points in the NHL.
As the label became more permanent, Fritsche seethed.
“That whole grinder role,” Fritsche said, with disgust in his voice. “I’ve never been a grinder.
“I’ve always been a highenergy player, but I don’t think that makes me a grinder. Growing up, at every level, I’ve always been one of the leading scorers on my team.”

more

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The Powerful “OMG Line”

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Calgary Herald,

Being discussed is the Phoenix Coyotes’ forward conglomeration of Mike Zigomanis, Oleg Saprykin and Laraque—an unlikely combination with unlikely production. Specifically, Laraque is being asked for full disclosure of the trio’s nickname.
Eventually, the answer arrives.
“OK, the media, they call it the OMG line, which stands for Oh My God,” says Laraque, still chortling. “And, you know, O for Oleg, M for Mike and G for Georges. But I don’t know about giving a whole line a name. The only line that was deserving of a name was the Legion of Doom (Eric Lindros, John LeClair, Mikael Renberg).
“But the Oh My God line? Of all things.”

read on

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Theodore Wants To Get Back To “Hart” Level

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Canada.com,

Jose Theodore has his Hart, but does he have the hands and feet to be an NHL starting goalie anymore?...
Theodore, who’s an albatross around the neck of the Avs if he can’t recover his game because they have to pay him next year, too, knows he has to be better.
“You’re not going to win the Hart every year, but I still think I can be at that level,” said the 30-year-old, who became only the second goalie (Dominik Hasek) in the last 45 years to win the MVP.

continued

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Out With The Old - In With The New

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Robert Tychkowski of the Toronto Sun,

Maybe Dave Semenko was right, that you do play your best hockey when you’re playing guilty.
For most of this season, the Columbus Blue Jackets and Chicago Blackhawks played a carefree brand of hockey - as in, they didn’t seem to care that their embattled coaches were being fitted for blindfolds and cigarettes.
While Trent Yawney and Gerard Gallant fretted for their jobs and struggled to light a fire under their teams, rather than those cigarettes, it didn’t look like the players shared their sense of urgency.

continued

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Canes Fans Getting It

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the National Post via the Times Colonist,

Something felt vaguely unnatural yesterday about the home hockey has found in North Carolina. It might have been the golfing weather that greeted the Carolina Hurricanes after their workout, or the hunting content of the local sports section, or the sign in front of the team’s practice rink that boasted its capacity for “ice skating.”
More than anything, though, it might have been that the Hurricanes have found a home at all. After almost a decade spent in the alien habitat of Tobacco Road, they seem to have established a footprint in Raleigh, with the defending Stanley Cup champions inspiring bar owners to hang their picture and prompting locals to learn more about the game.

continued

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Kings Recall Fukufuji

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Kings have recalled (emergency basis) goaltender Yutaka Fukufuji from the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League, Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi announced today.
Fukufuji, 24, has not appeared in a Monarchs game this season.  The 6-1, 180-pound native of Tokyo, Japan, was recalled by Manchester from the Reading Royals, the Kings/Monarchs ECHL affiliate, on November 30.  He has a 3-3-0 record, a 3.19 goals-against-average and a .898 save-percentage in 10 appearances with the Royals this season.

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Pens Need An Owner

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from TSN,

Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie has pulled his bid to purchase the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Sources tell TSN at the last moment the NHL provided a list of terms that Balsillie didn’t want to agree to. Among those terms was a promise that the franchise would remain in Pittsburgh regardless of circumstances. Also, if problems arose, the NHL would take over control of the franchise.

continued

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