Kukla's Korner

Random Musings on the NHL

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Paul Kukla at NHL.com:

* Will we see a substantial trade made before the holiday trade freeze? My heart says yes, we could use something to talk about, but my hockey mind says no.

* Take it to the bank, the Dallas Stars will make the playoffs!

* A challenge to any national anthem singer in the States. When the Montreal Canadiens visit your rink, please sing part of the Canadian National Anthem in French.  A definite YouTube post!

* The Hot Stove segment during the Hockey Night in Canada Saturday night broadcast could work as a weekly, half hour show.  I would tune in every time.

read on

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

All Dan Boyle

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Dan Boyle of the San Jose Sharks participated in an NHL tele-conference today. 

Q.    Your departure from Tampa Bay was probably a little bit unpleasant at the time. Any regrets now?
DAN BOYLE: No, not anymore (laughter). Like you said, ‘at the time.’ I just signed a six-year extension, was planning to be there for a while. But certainly having seen the way some guys have been treated and what’s gone on so far, and the way on top of it I’ve been treated here, I have no regrets whatsoever.

Q.    Why is San Jose better than Detroit this season?
DAN BOYLE: Well, I mean, our records are pretty similar. I think we have the edge so far. Honestly, depth I think is probably the biggest key. We have four lines, we have six D. When our top goalie Nabby got hurt, our backup goalie came in and did a great job. We’ve been lucky as far as health-wise, we’ve been pretty injury-free. You know, we’ll see. I mean, it’s a long season. We’ll see what happens. At the end of June, that’s what matters.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dan+boyle

What Happened To Parity?

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

There was an interesting comment in the if only they had goaltending post where I argued that the Detroit Red Wings have been let down by their goaltending and would really benefit by better goaltending - which may have to be acquired via trade.  A commenter JH says:

I’m curious why you think Detroit is currently on pace to have its best season, points-wise, since the “looser” point was established, with 56 wins? Is their goalie really holding them back?

It is an interesting comment despite the fact it is not factually true.  Since the shootout was instituted and every game had a winner, the most wins in a season was the Detroit Red Wings in 2005/06 who had 58 wins.  Currently this season, the San Jose Sharks are on pace for 67 wins, Boston Bruins 58 wins and the Detroit Red Wings 57 wins.  Although one must be cautioned that those are win projections, as opposed to actual win totals, it is interesting that three different teams are on pace to have some of the best seasons we have seen since the lockout.  Wasn’t the salary cap supposed to usher in parity to the league?  Why isn’t that happening?

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

The Sabres and the Art of Denial

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Jim Kelley at Sportsnet.ca:

One thing we’ve learned is that the art of denial is exactly that; it is an art form and it has reached new and fascinating heights.

For instance, lost in a spate of denunciations is the fact that no one in the Sabres organization denied the original point of the story that the team is for sale. What minority partner Larry Quinn said was that, “We are not in negotiations to sell the team.” Quinn neither named the “we” nor did he say that team owner Tom Golisano, the man most likely to be in the discussions to sell the franchise he purchased out of bankruptcy in 2003, was or was not involved. In fact, Golisano is said to be at the winter meetings in Florida but nowhere to be seen or heard. The owner made no public appearance after Day 1 of the Board of Governors meetings despite the fact he winters in Florida and the other 29 owners have, essentially, come to his house.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: larry+quinn, tom+golisano

Gratton & Vrbata Clear Waivers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Lightning Strikes,

Lightning forwards Chris Gratton and Radim Vrbata cleared waivers. Gratton is expected to be assigned to AHL Norfolk, and Vrbata likely will play for a team in his native Czech Republic.

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

Decision Ahead For Tallon

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail

... For Tallon, the Sundin hurdle is there, in front of him. Does he make a new push this week, as Sundin’s agent, J.P. Barry, begins to collect offers from suitors around the league? Or just leave well enough alone? Tallon has made a lot of really smart decisions in the last few years (getting Calder Trophy candidate Kris Versteeg for journeyman minor-leaguer Brandon Bochenski may rank right up there as one of the great steals of the past few years).

As his counterparts in Tampa, flail away, making one increasingly desperate move after another in a bid to turn their season and organization around, it may bear noting: Sometimes, the sign of a good manager is the ability to sit back and simply do nothing at all.

more

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

Move Tomas Vokoun Now

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from John Grigg of the Hockey News,

He’s a top-10 goalie having a down season on a bad team. Over the past three seasons, he’s averaged 31 wins, a 2.60 GAA, .919 save percentage and four shutouts. No goalie averaging 50-plus games played over that period has a better save percentage than Vokoun. To put it simply, he’s good and a number of teams will likely fall all over themselves for a shot at acquiring him.

The Panthers have little to play for over the next few years. Their future is not now and once other goalies begin to be traded, Vokoun loses value as an asset. So as Denis Lemieux might say, “Trade heem right #$@*~!& now!”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: tomas+vokoun

Blackhawks Make Roster Moves

Blog: Hockey News Wire By Paul

The Chicago Blackhawks have recalled left wing Pascal Pelletier (5-11, 191) from the American Hockey League’s Rockford IceHogs and have placed right wing Adam Burish on Injured Reserve. In addition, the Blackhawks have acquired defenseman Jimmy Sharrow (6-2, 198) from the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for a conditional draft choice and have assigned him to Rockford.

Pelletier, 25, leads Rockford with 13 goals – which includes seven in his last six contests – and ranks second with 21 points in 23 games this season. He shares third in the AHL with a team-high seven power-play markers. Pelletier was acquired by the Blackhawks from the Boston Bruins in exchange for center Martin St. Pierre on July 24, 2008.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | Hockey News Wire | Permalink
 

A Look At The Thrashers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the ICEMAN Bloggeth at the AJC,

The Thrashers’ overall record of 9-14-3 for 21 points means they have a .404 winning percentage, (based on points won versus points available). If you want to put that into the perspective of what it might take to land a playoff spot this coming spring…stop laughing…well, let’s look at it this way.

Last season, Ottawa and Boston entered the post-season as the 7th and 8th seeds in the East with 94 points. (Yes, I know Nashville was the 8-seed in the West with 91…but I’m using the model in the east since that is the conference Atlanta plays in). Anyway, in order to get to 94 points, the Thrashers would have to earn 73 of the remaining 112 available to them over the last 56 games. That would be a points winning percentage of .652.

To date, the teams that are playing at or above a .653 points winning % are San Jose, (.852 pnts. %)…Boston, (.778 pnts. %)…Detroit, (.769 pnts. %)…Montreal, (.673 pnts. %).

So, if the Thrashers can play… from this points on… at the same level of the Sharks, Red Wings, Bruins, and/or Habs…then they can make the playoffs.

more on Atlanta…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Melrose Hopes Tampa Doesn’t Win Another Game This Year

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Fan590,

The former Lightning coach joins Don Landry and Gord Stellick on the Morning Show to discuss his brief tenure in Tampa. Barry holds nothing back as he is brutally honest about his feelings towards the Tampa Organization and the players in the dressing room.

listen to the interview from this morning…

added 12:44pm, from Bolts Report,

There is just so much uncertainty surrounding this team on and off the ice.

So where do they go, where do they turn to for answers? Does it mattwr at this point? Are you the fans willing to watch this team finish at the bottom of the standings again if it means another top two draft pick, which means either John Tavares or Victor Hedman (6-6 Swedish defenseman) winds up in Tampa?

After all, no matter what was being said before the season, this team is not built for this season, they are a couple of years away, but with an identified core of Vinny Lecavalier, Ryan Malone, Andrej Meszaros, Steven Stamkos and Paul Ranger. (Yes, Marty is still a big part of this team, but not long term)

more

added 10:34pm, Make sure to check out the Tocchet talking about Melrose.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: barry+melros

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