Kukla's Korner

The Pressure Point

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damien Cox at ESPN,

They will be at the center of every game, usually the hero and often the goat, talked about more than any other player. Commentators will make excuses for them, searching for errors made by other players, and fans will curse or praise them depending on whether their team wins or loses, not on the actual quality of performance.
They are the goaltenders.
When these playoffs are over and a champion has been declared, one will leave an indelible story for the history book, an imprint on the collective memory of the sport as the one, the masked man, who best fought off the fear and insecurity and pressure to lift his team to the top of the mountain.

read on

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Mats Sundin Declines Team Sweden

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From TSN,

Mats Sundin has turned down an invitation to play for Sweden at the world hockey championship in Russia.
“It’s sad, but I can understand his decision,” coach Bengt-Ake Gustafsson said Thursday.
The 36-year-old Sundin, whose Toronto Maple Leafs missed the NHL playoffs, was one of the key players on Sweden’s team last year when it won the Olympic gold medal.
Alexander Steen of the Leafs is the only NHL player who has accepted an invitation to play for Sweden so far, but several others are expected to join the squad.

continued…

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The State Of The Caps

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ted Leonsis, owner of the Washington Capitals,

Another season has come to an end long before we would have liked, but we remain committed to improvement and patience in our plans to rebuild our franchise. The final standings show that we amassed the same number of points in 2006-07 as the prior season. And while that is true, this year’s team was better in many areas, and we demonstrated continued growth and improvement.
The power-play and the penalty-killing units both showed slight gains. We scored more goals and gave up fewer. We realize that more improvement is needed, and we will be directing our attention in that area during the summer. In the next several months we will be focused on doing what is necessary to achieve even greater strides for the 2007-08 season.

continued

Filed in: Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Satan Doesn’t Want The Attention

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,

Shortly before the 2004 trading deadline, Satan scored a goal in a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at HSBC Arena. Instead of the usual celebration, he took off his glove and put his hand to his ear, mimicking a telephone conversation. In other words, Sabres GM Darcy Regier had better get on the phone and trade him.
This did not go over well with the fans and almost a month later, in the Sabres’ last home game, Satan was chosen the first star. He came out and instead of lifting his stick in the usual salute to the crowd, he waved goodbye. This was a sincere attempt to say thank you for the good times and goodbye but by then the fans were not having any of it.
“Last year it was a little more noticeable,” Satan said of the booing. “It’s a little quieter this year but at least they remember me.”

more

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Buffalo Sabres, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Thrashers Lose The Blue

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the Blueland Blog,

Well, I promised I’d post pictures of Kari and Sutton with their blue hair, but as you may have heard if you were listening to the radio this morning, the blue hair is gone.

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Has Complacency Set In

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Shawn Windsor of the Detroit Free Press,

The problem is, they argued, too many other things have—including, most notably, the names on the back of the jerseys. No longer are the Wings dotted with Hall of Fame-caliber players who spent the better part of their careers in Detroit….
Holland notices the competition in the way his team is covered. Fewer front pages. Fewer lead spots in sports telecasts. Less time on talk radio.
“That’s where I’ve really noticed it,” he said.
The Wings simply aren’t the topic of conversation that they once were.

read on

What Holland says is so true, and the Wings must realize the have an untapped source that they have failed to utilize- The web and the many Wings bloggers.  They need to follow the example of many NHL teams and begin to recognize the Wings bloggers existence.

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Kulfan: No Bert At Morning Skate

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Update: Bruce MacLeod, not surprisingly, has more specifics.

Neither Detroit forward Todd Bertuzzi (concussion) nor Calgary defenseman Robyn Regehr (knee) took part in the morning skate, Thursday. Neither will be in the lineup tonight for Game 1. Bertuzzi did skate on his own and will have more tests Friday. Coach Mike Babcock considers him a possibility for Sunday’s Game 2.

Ted Kulfan reports that Todd Bertuzzi was absent, or at least not on the ice, for the morning skate.  That hasn’t stopped the conspiracy theorists amongst you from wondering aloud if this is a ploy by the Wings, but I don’t think so.  Count him out for Game 1.  If the Wings surprise us and he plays, good on ‘em.

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

I Would Not Be Happy

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Listening to NHL Live, a caller just mentioned he was watching the Stars/Canucks game in the Houston area via Time Warner cable.
At 2:00am last night, the game went off the air and an infomercial appeared.

Carriers of NHL hockey, step-up, be prepared for OT games, don’t let this happen again.

added 6:30pm, via Yahoo,

STAMFORD, Conn. (AP)—“We are obviously very disappointed to hear that some fans in a few select markets have reported that they did not see the end of this great game,” network spokeswoman Katie Bradshaw said.
Henrik Sedin scored 18:06 into the fourth overtime—at about 3:30 a.m. EDT Thursday—to give the Canucks a 5-4 Game 1 win over the Stars in the sixth-longest playoff game in NHL history.
“The game did run in its entirety on the Versus network feed,” Bradshaw said. “But based on the information we have received, we are currently working with our affiliates in the affected markets to find out what caused the problem and to make sure that this doesn’t happen again during the playoffs.”

Filed in: Hockey Broadcasting, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Oh…Good

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

So…getting any work done?  Approximately 8 hours until the pain starts.  Now don’t get me wrong.  When I say it’s going to be painful, that doesn’t necessarily mean I’m predicting a loss tonite.  Nope.  It just means the playoffs themselves are painful. Every game, every minute, every shift. 

I’ll tell you, and this is just between us, I was feeling sorry for AlanaH last night, knowing she was dying with all 76 shots fired at Luongo.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Big 3 Must Lead

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Tampa Tribune,

Brad Richards, Vinny Lecavalier and Marty St. Louis are the trinity on which Tampa Bay has pinned its hopes as it embarks on another playoff journey today in the opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs against the New Jersey Devils.
And if Tampa’s Big Three aren’t leading the way, the Lightning’s chances of victory are severely diminished.

read on

Filed in: NHL Playoff Talk, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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