Kukla's Korner

Time Running Out On Vigneault

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jason Botchford of the Vancouver Province via Faceoff.com,

If the Canucks don’t win the Stanley Cup this year, it’s not likely ever going to happen with Alain Vigneault as their head coach.

This may seem outlandish and ridiculous. But it’s the cold, harsh reality of NHL history.

A look at the past 82 Stanley Cup winners shows that only three times has a head coach been with a team for more than four years before winning a Cup. It suggests that if the chemistry between a coach and his team doesn’t result in a championship within four years, it’s not likely ever going to happen.

Think of it like a flipped hourglass which runs out of sand after that key fourth year.

The statistic may be numbing when you consider this is Vigneault’s fourth year at the helm in Vancouver.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alain+vigneault

Matt Cooke Gets Two Game Suspension

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from NHL.com,

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Matt Cooke has been suspended for two games, without pay, as the result of a deliberate check to the head area of New York Rangers forward Artem Anisimov, the League announced Sunday.

Cooke delivered the hit Saturday during the third period of the Penguins’ 8-3 win over the Rangers at Mellon Arena. He was assessed a minor penalty for interference. Anisimov did not return to the game.

After Cooke served the two minutes, Donald Brashear of the Rangers attempted to engage him in a fight, but the officials stepped in between the two and Brashear was assessed a double minor for roughing.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: matt+cooke

Sharks Won’t Forget

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from David Pollak of Working the Corners,

McLellan was asked this morning whether he thought his team should have responded in some way when Edmonton’s J.F. Jacques played a little rough with Joe Thornton in the third period of Friday night’s game.

“I very much do,” McLellan said. “I think there’s two ways of doing that and one of them we accomplished. We went out and scored a couple of goals that put them on their heels and we ended up winning the game.

“The other one can be a physical response, whether it’s with the individual or some of our other players getting physically active with some of their elite palyers,” he added. “We took care of it one area. I don’t know if we had the opportunity to take care of it the other way.”

“We have to be careful because the win supercedes everything else,” McLellan said. “You play against teams a numer of times. You can respond later on if you have to.”

more on the Sharks…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Hiding Behind The Rule Book

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

John Tortorella wants the instigator rule removed from the book as it currently stands.

The Rangers’ head coach expressed that opinion after Matt Cooke elbowed Artem Anisimov in the head at 7:34 of the third period of last night’s 8-3 defeat to the Penguins and escaped all punishment other than—get this—a two-minute penalty for interference.

Anisimov, who lost his helmet and went to the ice hard after absorbing the blow on which Cooke appeared to leave his feet, remained on the bench for the duration of the game.

“The big thing this year is head shots and what the league is going to do about it, but to me it’s pretty simple,” Tortorella said. “There’s no fear at all [of] retribution.

“That’s why there’s more violence. Guys hide behind the rule book.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: john+tortorella

Russian Prospects Head Back To Russia

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

The NHL has been slowly losing talented players to the KHL.  The top eight scorers in the KHL are all ex-NHL players.  All of them (Maxim Sushinsky, Alexei Yashin, Alexander Radulov, Sergei Zinovjev, Marcel Hossa, Mattias Weindhandl, Patrick Thoresen and Aleksey Morozov) are players who easily hold down NHL jobs.  For the KHL to experience future growth, they must be able to attract top prospects to play in their league (and not the NHL) and they are doing this.  Russian prospects who have not had instant success in the NHL are returning to the KHL.  So far this season, Nikita Filatov of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Viktor Tikhonov of the Phoenix Coyotes have returned to play with CSKA Moscow.  Both of these deals are officially player loans.  These are unhappy NHL players who are missing their homeland and not making as fast progress in the league get a chance to go home.  It is unclear when if ever these players will be returning to the NHL.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

Can A Dman Win The Calder?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

...And this year, the winner easily could be a forward again, be it John Tavares (Islanders), former University of New Hampshire standout James van Riemsdyk (Flyers), or Ryan O’Reilly (Avalanche).

Overall, this is the best rookie class in recent memory, and unless one of the aforementioned forwards runs off with point production, a few defensemen (arguably a harder position to master) will make the voting very interesting.

The Rangers have Michael Del Zotto, who has been leading first-year defensemen in scoring from the start of the season. Jason Demers has been a seamless addition on the back line in San Jose, where most of the attention goes to star forwards Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, and Heatley.

And then there are two budding stars who one day could be Norris Trophy candidates: Tyler Myers in Buffalo and Victor Hedman in Tampa.

more and other hockey topics discussed…

Also not the above mentioned Jason Demers was sent to the minors yeaterday with Rob Blake ready to return to the Sharks lineup tonight.

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

KK- Looking For A Sweater?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Since I started running the Black Friday sale at IceJerserys.com on Friday, we have sold roughly 20 sweaters in two days.

This deal is not available if you just go on your own to IceJerserys.com.  The 25% off is only available to select affiliates and is great deal if you are looking for a sweater.

Remember, the sale ends at 11:59pm ET tonight.

Black Friday Sale > Save 25% when you order your Customized Hockey Jersey today at IceJerseys.com  Sale is good thru November 29th (11:59 PM EST)

Filed in: KK Website Business, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Look For The Blackhawks To Move Cam Barker

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal via Faceoff.com,

• Take this to the bank: The Chicago Blackhawks will move Cam Barker’s $3-million US salary this summer because fellow defenceman Bryan Campbell and his $7 million salary is staying put.

The Blackhawks also have hugely underrated Swede Niklas Hjalmarsson playing 20 minutes a game. Barker plays 14 minutes a night and teams are always looking for power-play pointmen.

• Todd Bertuzzi is lighter than ever—he’s on the ice for optional workouts 15 minutes before the other players in Detroit—but you have to wonder whether his hands are gone. That’s what happened to his old Vancouver Canucks teammate, Markus Naslund, who lost his mitts. Bertuzzi is not in the slot like he used to be; he’s on the perimeter. He has just one goal in the last 13 games.

more Western and Eastern Coference notes…

added 10:40am, And even more from Jim at Faceoff.com.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Future Was Supposed To Be Brighter

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bob Hunter of the Columbus Dispatch,

The optimist in us always sees our favorite players increasing their production, especially when they’re still young enough to seem like one of the neighborhood kids.

So it was that the Blue Jackets, coming off their first playoff appearance with a maturing, stable roster that is the youngest in the NHL, figured to take another significant step up in the standings.

Their 5-1 start even seemed to confirm that, which is probably why a lot of people are befuddled that they lost their fifth straight game, 4-3 in a shootout, last night to the Calgary Flames.

It wasn’t supposed to be like this. Somehow, goaltender Steve Mason was going to be even better than he was as the NHL’s top rookie. Bigger, stronger Jake Voracek was going to be the second coming of Ales Hemsky, or Jaromir Jagr, or Marian Hossa or, well, somebody.


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

No Bad Karma For Heatley

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Allen Panzeri of the Ottawa Sun,

It’s certainly not what any fan of the Ottawa Senators would have wished for Dany Heatley.

They would have liked to see any number of calamities strike the 28-year-old left-winger for the agony he put the city through last summer, when he suddenly demanded to be traded, refused a trade to the Edmonton Oilers and finally accepted one to the San Jose Sharks, a team that was on his list of preferred destinations.

Such gall deserved to be punished—and surely would, if all was right with the world.

Perhaps his scoring touch would disappear. Perhaps he’d forget how to skate. Perhaps it would start to snow in San Jose.

Alas, it’s time to give up on any dream of any divine retribution. In fact, this situation is as close to perfect as it could be for Heatley.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dany+heatley

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