Kukla's Korner

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I went into the dressing room after the game to untie Mike’s skates and he was sitting right beside Liam. Liam’s dad, John, a ginger-haired Glaswegian who is an ardent member of the Glasgow Rangers Supporters Club, was untying Liam’s skates beside me. I was seething and not saying anything when Mike asked me a question: “How did I play, Dad?”

“Great, Mike, you played great. It’s not your fault if no one will pass you the puck.”

Unlike the targeting incident in lacrosse, where it took me years to realize what an ass I was, I knew I had made a big mistake the second the words came out of my mouth. Mike just looked at me. Liam looked at me. John Reddox, a good guy but every bit as much a Crazy Hockey Dad as me, just looked at me. No one said a word, which was good because it died right then and there. Under different circumstances, it could have evolved into quite a scene.

I was immediately embarrassed.

-Bob McKenzie in an excerpt from his new book, Hockey Dad by Bob McKenzie.  More at the Calgary Herald and the book is available at Amazon.

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Lecavalier Excited Tanguay Joining Bolts

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damian Cristodero of Lightning Strikes at the St. Petersburg Times,

The agent for free-agent wing Alex Tanguay said his client will sign a one-year deal with the Tampa Bay Lightning after he passes a physical that will occur in Tampa on Monday or Tuesday….

Lecavalier, who played with Tanguay for Canada at the 1998 world junior championship, said he spoke to Tanguay twice, including Friday night.

“He asked me about Tampa and I told him about coming to the tam and the direction it is going,” Lecavalier said, and added, “Anybody that plays with a guy like Tanguay, he’s such a great passer and can score. He brings a lot to the team, so I’m excited.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+tanguay, vinny+lecavalier

Nice Day For A Wedding

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The Toronto Sun and Sportsbladet have pictures of Sundin’s wedding if you are interested.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mats+sundin

How To Rebuild A Defence Under A Salary Cap

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

In the salary capped NHL one must be careful when rebuilding a team.  It is important to do it while avoiding the long and often unnecessary process of blowing up everything and spending years out of contention.  Most teams are not in such bad shape that blowing everything up is a defenceable move.  The Vancouver Canucks have a top level goaltender in Roberto Luongo and a pretty good group of forwards led by Daniel and Henrik Sedin.  Their defence was looking rather thin.  The Canucks had four returning defencemen who had reasonable success last season in Kevin Bieksa, Alexander Edler, Sami Salo and Willie Mitchell.  The only other proven NHLer on defence was Shane O’Brien, who played a lesser role with the team last year.  It was clear that some additions were needed on defence.

When in that situation, most teams show up money in hand on the first day of free agency ready to hand a lot of it to the best defenceman they can find.  It is a move that can work out, but it often doesn’t as teams usually spend a lot of money in a long term contract that lasts well into the decline phase of the player signed.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

Calling Of The Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Owen Good at Kotaku,

The scene is familiar: Midway through the first period of an NHL game, and the shot knots up the score. Randy Hahn considers the action for a split-second and leans into his microphone.

“The Sharks have come right back and tied this one up,” says the television voice of San Jose hockey. “That goal is a real refresher - you get down early, but you’ve come right back and tied it up here in the first period.”

It’s 2:30 p.m., Aug. 20 in Novato, Calif. San Jose’s next game will be 28 days and 400 miles away, in Los Angeles. Hahn is familiar to South Bay fans through his work on Comcast Sports Net. But he’s in the North Bay today as the play-by-play man for NHL 2K10, cutting some final audio for the game before its Sept. 15 release.

It’s a job Hahn could do with his eyes closed, and not because it’s easy.


Filed in: Fantasy Hockey and Gaming, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: randy+hahn

Bertuzzi In The Lineup Tonight For The London Knights

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Patrick Maloney of the London Free Press,

A big NHL name — as in six-foot-three and 235 pounds — has been added to the London Knights lineup for Saturday night’s Euro Can Cup game against Munich.

Todd Bertuzzi, the veteran NHLer who recently signed with Detroit, is driving to London from his Kitchener home for tonight’s game — and possibly Monday night’s tournament final.

“Putting Todd Bertuzzi on the ice is an incredible addition,” said Pat Curcio, who organized the tournament that features three European squads and a team featuring Knights alumni and other NHLers.

continued (story seems to have been pulled from the London Free Press, link now directs to a 404 page)

update 5:39pm, New link found, now working again.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Non-NHL Hockey, Minor League, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: todd+bertuzzi

Don’t Mention Heatley Or Comrie To The Wild

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

I cannot make this any clearer. Other than what I reported to you near the Draft, all Dany Heatley/Wild trade rumors you read have been invented out of thin air. Unless something changes, the Wild has not had trade talks with Ottawa in six weeks regarding Heatley. Additionally, the Wild has no interest in Mike Comrie, I’ve been told.

So, in conclusion, the current roster will likely still be the roster at the start of camp, but by late September, there’s a decent chance GM Chuck Fletcher will have the ability to make some alterations.

more on the Wild…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Time For Some Changes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jason Kay of The Hockey News,

Bottom line: the game is great, but we should always be thinking about ways to make it better. Here are 40 of the ways I saw, at least at one point in my tenure – and in no particular order – of making that happen.

1. Shorten the season. Seventy games would do nicely.

3. More 4-on-4. Maybe the last five minutes of regulation?

9. Bigger nets. With bigger players, bigger gear and better technique, the scoring area has drastically reduced over the years.


Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Comrie Will Not Be An Oiler

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

It may be the hottest rumour on Internet sites, but forget about Mike Comrie and the Edmonton Oilers kissing and making up.

“It ain’t happening ... he ain’t coming here,” said a well-informed source. “Mike doesn’t fit any need that we have right now.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+comrie

All Stephen Walkom

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Mike Brophy does a Q & A with Stephen Walkom who has left his job as the NHL’s director of officiating and will be returning as a referee this season.

Sportsnet.ca: Some critics suggested the standard for calls took a little dip in last season’s playoffs and once again referees were turning a blind eye to infractions. Do you agree?

Walkom: They talked about it a little bit, but I think everybody is always ready to pounce on it. That’s why I compared the first period prior to the lockout against the first period of this year’s playoffs. Yeah, there was probably one penalty in the first period that we should have called, but we don’t want our guys making up penalties just so we can call the standard. Was there one hook missed? Yeah, there was. Was there a hold we could have called in the second period? Perhaps. But the thing is there were 14 of those four years earlier. Our guys aren’t missing penalties by choice; not calling penalties because of the time of the game or the score of the game. That mentality is gone. If they see something, they react to it.


Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Officiating, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: stephen+walkom

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