Kukla's Korner

Pre-Game Talk

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

via Ansar Khan tweets,

Babcock said he's not sure yet if Datsyuk will play. He'll find out either before or after the warmups.

If Datsyuk can't go, Cleary will be in the lineup. Babcock said he hadn't decided who'd be second line center if Datsyuk is out.

No changes on defense. Kindl is healthy scratch.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

The Eastern Conference Playoff Picture

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

NHL Short Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

THIRD-PERIOD SURGE POWERS WILD TO FOURTH STRAIGHT WIN
Knotted at 1-1 after 40 minutes, the Wild scored three third-period goals to sweep their three-game season series with the Flames and pick up their fourth consecutive victory overall.
 
* At 43-25-7 (93 points), the Wild moved three points ahead of the idle Jets (39-24-12, 90 points) for the first Wild Card spot in the Western Conference.
 

 
* The Wild also moved within one point of the Blackhawks (44-24-6, 94 points) – who lost in regulation – for third place in the Central Division. Chicago holds one game in hand, but Minnesota owns the ROW tiebreaker (MIN: 39, CHI: 35). The teams face off for a fifth and final time on April 7 at CHI (CHI: 3-1-0, MIN: 1-3-0).

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Learning Year For The Colorado Avalanche

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Terry Frei of the Denver Post,

Complacency, even short-lived and subconscious, and even when not obvious, is a fatal flaw in the NHL.

"All my years, and it's not been 100 years, but the last 10 years as a coach and a coaching staff, I think we always like to evaluate our work," Roy said Thursday in Vancouver before coaching the Avalanche to a 4-1 victory over the Canucks.

"We did that least year, we're doing it this year. We're always going to learn something. Talking to other coaches, there are years you're going to be learning more than others. This year was a year that I thought I learned a lot more, compared to, say, last year.

"Last year we were playing with confidence, we were playing with such a good mind-set, it was kind of a lot easier. This year, we had to try to find ways to get the team going, find ways to help the power play, working at it, changing the structure of the team, working harder on details of our neutral-zone forecheck. These are things I feel that we learned a lot."

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

What Happened To The San Jose Sharks?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from David Pollak of the Mercury News,

So what went wrong? How did a team that finished with 111 points last season -- tied for fourth best in the NHL -- fall so far?

"We can't look at a single faction of our team, whether it's the youth or the older players or the leadership or the coach or the coaching staff," coach Todd McLellan said this week. "Whatever it might be, we're team-deep as far as where we've put ourselves in the standings."

There is no shortage of things you can point to by looking at stats.

Patrick Marleau is a minus-16 and, with only 17 goals, is having his poorest season offensively since 2007-08. A year ago, Marleau had 33 goals and was even when it came to plus-minus.

Tomas Hertl and Matt Nieto, two of the young players around whom the Sharks constructed their rebuild, did not show the improvement that was expected after their rookie seasons. Hertl, in fact, went backward. He has 12 goals in 74 games; last season, he had 15 goals in 37 games. Rookie defenseman Mirco Mueller also struggled at times as he tried to make the jump from junior hockey.

read on

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

Evgeni Malkin On The Recent Play Of The Pittsburgh Penguins

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jenn Menendez of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,

Evgeni Malkin did not mince words Friday in a frank assessment of the Penguins.

“We play so bad right now. It’s true. Not just one guy, the whole team,” said Malkin. “Not fun [to] watch, you know. Last game I think [was the] worst game all season. It’s not fun to watch it.”

He also said he is sure the Penguins can turn this around.

“Yeah, of course. There’s a great chance. When you win, it’s more confidence for everyone,” Malkin said.

Could Malkin be the spark the Penguins need to generate some confidence?

Malkin and Patric Hornqvist are “very close” to returning to lineup, coach Mike Johnston said Friday, almost gleefully.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: evgeni+malkin

Khan Says It All

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

A win would help the Red Wings in several ways. It would relieve some pressure following a 3-7-1 stretch that has raised concerns about their goaltending. It would prevent Ottawa and Boston, clubs that are five points behind them in the Atlantic Division, from creeping closer. And it would be a much-needed boost of confidence against the highest-scoring team in the NHL.

more on today's game...

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Preview And Notes- Detroit Red Wings vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

Puck drops just after 2:00pm ET today....

via Brian Hunter of NHL.com,

TV: SUN, FS-D

Season series: The Tampa Bay Lightning are trying to complete a four-game season sweep of the Detroit Red Wings. Ryan Callahan had the only goal of the shootout the last time they met at Joe Louis Arena. Steven Stamkos has four goals to lead all scorers. Ben Bishop has a 1.62 goals-against average and .937 save percentage in three starts.

Lightning team scope: Forward Brenden Morrow, who didn't play in a 3-2 loss to the Nashville Predators on Thursday because of an upper-body injury, practiced Friday in a regular jersey. Morrow said he was feeling better and might be able to play, according to the Tampa Bay Times. The Lightning worked on their power play, using forward Brian Boyle in front of the net on the first unit with Stamkos, Valtteri Filppula, Alex Killorn and Anton Stralman. Boyle scored his 15th goal of the season against the Predators. Despite leading the NHL in offense at 3.23 goals per game, the Lightning had the 19th-ranked power play entering games Friday at 18.1 percent. The Lightning are on the verge of clinching a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for a second straight season.

Red Wings team scope: This is the finale of a four-game road trip for Detroit, which has given up 11 goals in losing consecutive games to the Arizona Coyotes and San Jose Sharks, teams outside of the playoffs in the Western Conference. Forward Riley Sheahan, who is seventh on the Red Wings in scoring with 34 points, is day-to-day with an upper-body injury. Goalie Petr Mrazek, who relieved Jimmy Howard after the first period of the 6-4 loss Thursday to the Sharks, will start, according to MLive.com. Forward Pavel Datsyuk skated with Tomas Tatar and Darren Helm during line rushes Friday, but coach Mike Babcock wasn't sure if Datsyuk would play. He has missed the past five games with a lower-body injury.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Morning Line- Bernie Miklasz

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The playoffs have been an eternal, unsolved mystery for this franchise. But you have to like where the Blues are standing right now.

-Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch where you can read more on the Blues.

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Video- Recap Of The Three NHL Games On Friday

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

It will take you just over 2 minutes to watch the highlights...

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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