Kukla's Korner

Will The Kings Make A Comeback?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rich Hammond of the Los Angeles Register,

Are the Kings finished, or merely setting up a blockbuster Hollywood sequel?

Losing consecutive playoff games by an aggregate score of 13-5 doesn’t lend itself to many positives, but there is one for the Kings: They were in this exact same hole 12 months ago, then leapt out of it.

Last year, the Kings returned from St. Louis down 2-0 in their first-round series, then won four consecutive games and advanced. Now, after two shockingly poor efforts, the Kings trail San Jose 2-0 in this first-round series, and face a veritable do-or-die Game 3 on Tuesday night at Staples Center.

“We’ll play better (in Game 3),” Coach Darryl Sutter said Monday afternoon, after fewer than half the Kings skated. “It’s not like there was a death in the family or something.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

[04/22/2014] GDT: Red Wings vs Bruins

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By RedMenace

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Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Campbell: Lady Byng finalist Martin St. Louis’ trade demands weren’t ‘gentlemanly’

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

The NHL announced that Martin St. Louis is one of the finalists for the Lady Byng Trophy as the league's most gentlemanly player today, but the Hockey News's Ken Campbell summarizes at least the Twitter-using media's reaction to said news:

Martin St-Louis did not get my vote for the Lady Byng, basically because he didn’t deserve it. St-Louis may have had only 10 penalty minutes this season, but he did anything but prove he was worth of the award that goes, “to the player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability.”

Call me old-fashioned, but I don’t believe that a player who sulks and whines and demands a trade out of town because he wasn’t originally selected for the Canadian Olympic team “exhibits the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct.” In most corners of the world, we would call a guy who does something like that a big baby.

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: martin+st.+louis, team+canada

Red Wings-Bruins Game 3 game-day updates: Alfredsson out

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Updated 18x at 2:56 PM: After a Monday's "optional," the Detroit Red Wings hope to utilize home ice to their advantage as they host the Boston Bruins this evening (7:30 PM EDT on FSD in Michigan, NESN in Massachusetts, and NBCSN or TSN TSN2 everywhere else, and on 97.1 FM; the Wings sent out an email stating that tickets are still available for tonight's game).

Again, with the series tied at 1 game apiece, both teams insist that they're going to impose their will upon their opponent via composed, disciplined and structurally-sound hockey, but the Wings and Bruins' definitions thereof are very different.

Cue the obligatory Ye Olde Game Day Skate photos!

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Your Lady Byng Memorial Trophy Finalists

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NEW YORK (April 22, 2014) -- Forwards Patrick Marleau of the San Jose Sharks, Ryan O'Reilly of the Colorado Avalanche and Martin St. Louis of the New York Rangers are the three finalists for the 2013-14 Lady Byng Memorial Trophy, awarded "to the player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability," the National Hockey League announced today.

Members of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association submitted ballots for the Lady Byng Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The winner will be announced Tuesday, June 24, during the 2014 NHL Awards from Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas. The 2014 NHL Awards will be broadcast by NBCSN in the United States and CBC in Canada.

Following are the finalists for the Lady Byng Trophy, in alphabetical order:

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

NHL Short Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

SPECTACULAR GOAL CAPS WILD OT VICTORY
Mikael Granlund scored his first career Stanley Cup Playoff goal in stunning fashion to break a scoreless deadlock 5:08 into overtime and give Minnesota a 1-0 victory over Colorado. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Granlund is only the fifth NHL player in the last 75 years to score his first career playoff goal in a 1–0 overtime game. The other were San Jose’s Andrei Zyuzin (1998), Philadelphia’s Ruslan Fedotenko (2002), San Jose’s Niko Dimitrakos (2004) and Colorado’s Ryan O’Reilly (2010).

* Minnesota rookie Darcy Kuemper (22 saves) registered the first playoff shutout in franchise history and became the first NHL goaltender to record a shutout in his first postseason start since Anaheim's Jonas Hiller blanked San Jose on April 16, 2009. In addition, Kuemper is the first netminder to post the milestone in a 1–0 overtime win since Detroit's Normie Smith in 1936.

* The Wild set playoff franchise records with 22 shots in the first period and 46 overall.

* The Wild and Avalanche went to overtime for the seventh time in their 16 Stanley Cup Playoff meetings, with Minnesota improving to 5-2 in those games. Eleven of their 16 contests have been decided by one goal, including 10 of the past 12.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Blue Jackets Let One Slip Away

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Aaron Portzline of Puck-Rakers at the Columbus Dispatch,

This first-round series between the Blue Jackets and Pittsburgh Penguins has made for immensely compelling hockey. The Blue Jackets must exert their will to keep the Penguins from exerting their skill.

Last night, the Jackets had the Penguins tangled and frustrated for the better part of two periods before a delirious crowd of 19,148 in Nationwide Arena, which hosted its third-ever Stanley Cup playoff game, the first in five seasons.

But all of the Jackets’ good work came unraveled in a dizzying span of 2:13 of the third period, when the Penguins scored three goals to take a 4-3 lead and, eventually, a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series.

Game 4 is Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Nationwide.

“I don’t think Game 4 can come fast enough for us,” Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson said.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Anaheim Ducks Are Unhappy With The Physical Play Of The Dallas Stars

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News,

Game 3 between the Stars and Ducks featured four roughing penalties, two slashing penalties and three 10-minute misconduct penalties, and Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau blamed the Stars for that.

“I think it was pretty obvious out there,” Boudreau said when asked if the Stars crossed the line. “We’ve warned the refs about them, anyway. It’s just something that I guess you do anything to win, but it’s not something that I think our team would do. We’ll take them and be as physical and be as mean as they want, but obviously they know there’s something wrong with his jaw, so they’re going after it.”

Boudreau was especially upset that Antoine Roussel took on Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf, who was hit in the face with a slap shot in Game 1 and is wearing a cage to protect his face. Roussel was in a shoving match with Getzlaf and touched the mask. Getzlaf then threw a punch at Roussel and Roussel started punching back.

“You’ve got to stay as disciplined as you can, but you’ve got to protect yourself, too,” Getzlaf said. “That’s part of the game. Obviously, I never expected them to target my face that much, but that’s the way it goes I guess.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Red Wings-Bruins Game 3 set-up and overnight report: both Wings, B’s say poise is on their side

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Detroit Red Wings face a nearly-must-win situation as they host the Boston Bruins tonight in Game 3 (7:30 PM on FSD in Michigan, NESN in Massachusetts, and NBCSN and TSN everywhere else, 97.1 FM as well).

After dropping Game 2 (and getting beaten up, as the Chief reminded us), the Wings flew home and "took an optional" Monday at the Joe, while the Bruins--reminding us that this isn't exactly a West Coast series--stayed in Boston to hold their own optional before flying to Detroit on Monday afternoon.

Both teams' players spoke with the press at length; I've already posted a video entry regarding the Wings' comments, and on Monday evening, the Bruins' website posted their off-day report...

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Early Playoff MVP

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

At least two games have been played in every first round playoff series and I am going to take this opportunity to make my first pick of the early playoff MVP.  Obviously it is extremely early in the playoffs and it is possible that the next game will significantly change my pick. 

Today, I select Tuukka Rask of the Boston Bruins as the early playoff MVP.  Rask has held back the Red Wings offence.  He is posting a 1.02 GAA and a .966 saves percentage.  Those are incredible numbers.  Rask has been the best goalie in the NHL all season and given that he is just entering the prime years of his career, it is possible that he could establish himself as the best goalie in the NHL for years to come.  This season may only be the start.

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

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