Kukla's Korner

GDT - Game #79: Red Wings at Sabres (7:00)

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Jeff OKWingnut

DET played inspired hockey yesterday against MIN, a team that had to garner at least one point to keep their playoff hopes alive.  Marian Hossa potted the game winner at 19:05 of the 3rd.  With the win, DET became only the third franchise in history to have 50 wins in four consecutive seasons (BOS 1971-74, and MTL 1976-79).  Perhaps more importantly for Wings fan, DET started the game with intensity, and played solidly for an entire 60 mins.  Babcock:  “We knew how we had to play, and I thought we were good.”  “I thought Ozzie made a few key saves at the end.”  “I thought Ozzie played good, and he’s got to feel good about that.”  DET can expect the BUF tilt tonight to have the same playoff intensity.

BUF (38-31-9) are 10th in the East - four points behind the New York Rangers and Florida Panthers with one game in hand on both teams. If the Sabres win all four remaining games, they would need the Rangers and Panthers to each lose one game to secure a playoff spot.  BUF are coming off a disappointing 3-2 loss to the NJD on Saturday night.  BUF came out flat against NJD, allowing the Devils to score twice in the first 5:38. Trailing 3-0 entering the final 20 minutes, BUF launched a furious 23-shot rally but produced only two goals in the 3-2 defeat.  Miller is 3-1-1 since returning from a sprained ankle, and has a 3.30 ga/a, having given up 16 goals.

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Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Ducks Frustrated

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Wood of Ducks Blog,

Among the NHL’s many mysteries is how the Ducks can be playing by far their best hockey of the season and yet, over the past three games, have drawn only four power-play opportunities.

The club’s frustration reached a breaking point at the conclusion of Sunday night’s 3-2 loss to the league-leading San Jose Sharks at Honda Center.

After a debatable holding penalty on Ducks left wing Drew Miller led to a power-play conversion by Sharks winger Jonathan Cheechoo that snapped a 2-2 tie at 13:19 of the third period, the Ducks spent the game’s final 80 seconds controlling the puck in the offensive zone, pressing for an equalizer that never came.

It might have been different had veteran San Jose winger Jeremy Roenick not mugged Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf in the slot during the waning seconds. There was no penalty call.

“I don’t think Ryan Getzlaf is going to miss a wide-open one-timer,” Ducks defenseman Ryan Whitney said. “He’s going to at least get his stick on the puck unless he’s hooked. He’s not just going to whiff.”

Referees Dan O’Rourke and Chris Lee handed out a combined 64 penalty minutes, including four misconducts, to four players from each side following a ruckus after time expired.

continued and watch video below of the end of the game fracas…

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

MVP Race Again

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

When I last talked about the MVP race I supported Evgeni Malkin over Alexander Ovechkin.  I did this in part because Malkin has a significant lead in the points race.  He doesn’t anymore.  Malkin’s lead has shrunk to two points.  Ovechkin has a huge lead in goals and it would take a minor miracle for him to not win the Rocket Richard Trophy.  Since goals are a more significant measure of offensive status of a player than assists, I support Alexander Ovechkin as the current Hart Trophy leader.

There are a few other fringe candidates that might obtain support in some circles including Zach Parise, Pavel Datsyuk, Steve Mason, Sidney Crosby and Tim Thomas but none are likely to seriously impact the Hart Trophy race.  It is between Ovechkin and Malkin and Ovechkin has recently pulled into the lead.

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

Lemaire Points Out Mistakes After Loss To Wings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Russo of the Star-Tribune,

“You make three mistakes on one shift at a very late moment in a game,” said Lemaire, bristling. “I just can’t understand it. It’s like we turn the lights off on three guys.

“You’ve got to think all the time, especially against a team like this. We didn’t touch the puck in the first period. So what does it tell you? You better be sharp, especially when you’ve got a chance to be [in OT]. Wake up, you know?”

Indeed, there were three mistakes, but it was Zidlicky who caused the 2-on-1. This is a mistake Zidlicky has made over and over again this season. He routinely gets enticed into stepping up in the neutral zone, and it almost always results in an odd-man rush.

“The only thing I can say is this is how you play in this situation,” an angry Lemaire said. “After that, you’ve got it in your hands. And then you don’t do it, I’m going to say it again. OK? That’s all I can do.”

more on the Wild loss to Detroit today.  I thought I would point this out to Detroit fans too, which is included in the game wrap-

“Too bad we didn’t finish,” Gaborik said. “[Chris] Osgood was shaky out there. We could have scored a couple more goals on him.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jacques+lemaire

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“People don’t understand you’re dealing with desperate teams, no one’s going to go away with a fight. That’s just the way the league’s set up. It’s an 82-game marathon. You get to stop the marathon after 82 games and then you get into the [playoff] starting blocks to run a 100-yard dash.

“That’s your reward.”

-Flames coach Mike Keenan.  More on Calgary from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail (Monday edition).

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+keenan

The Battling Crosby

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Sidney Crosby and Keith Ballard go at it today after Ballard delivered a hip check to Evgeni Malkin.  Both received five for fighting and Crosby also had two added for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: keith+ballard, sidney+crosby

Lightning Will Receive A Large Revenue Sharing Check

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damian Cristodero of the St. Peterburg Times,

Owner Len Barrie said a revenue sharing check the Lightning will get this year from the league will not make it profitable.

“We’ll still be in the red for the year,” he said between periods of Saturday’s loss to the Islanders at Nassau Coliseum.

But the bottom line won’t be as egregious. Barrie declined to give specifics, but Tampa Bay apparently can expect perhaps up to $14 million.

“It helps every team,” Barrie said of revenue sharing. “It helps every team that’s in a market that’s trying to grow and make the league stronger, and we’re in one of those markets.”


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

Ducks Top Line Dominating Opponents

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Wood of Ducks Blog at the OC Register,

Before the Ducks dealt the Oilers a critical blow with a 5-3 victory that night in Edmonton, MacTavish talked about the Ducks’ top line of center Ryan Getzlaf and wingers Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan, comparing the trio to the famous Legion of Doom line iced by the Philadelphia Flyers in the mid-1990s.

Eric Lindros, John LeClair and Mikael Renberg not only piled up big offensive numbers, but often dominated games physically.

Getzlaf, Perry and Ryan, who average 6-foot-3 and 211 pounds, are doing the same things of late.

With a combined three goals and five assists in Saturday’s 5-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks at HP Pavilion — what San Jose coach Todd McLellan called a “flat-out dominant” performance — the three have totaled 14 goals and 32 points over the past six games entering a Sunday night rematch with the Sharks at Honda Center.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Grow Your Beard

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals are encouraging fans to participate in one of hockey’s most visible traditions—the playoff beard. Fans may elect to grow a beard themselves or make a financial donation in support of a Capitals player or a fan who has elected to grow a playoff beard. The Capitals’ Beard-a-thon is an opportunity for fans to grow their own beard and raise money for charity, as all proceeds will benefit Washington Capitals Charities.

Participants in the Capitals’ Beard-a-thon can invite family members, friends and business associates to pledge money for their playoff beard. Some of the participants in the Beard-a-thon are Comcast SportsNet anchors Brent Harris, Chris Hernandez, Michael Jenkins, Chris Miller and Russ Thaler. WJFK 106.7 FM’s John “Cakes” Auville from the Junkies, Chad Dukes from the Big O and Dukes Show and nationally syndicated personality Mike O’Meara from the Mike O’Meara Show will also participate in the Beard-a-thon. Money will be donated to Washington Capitals Charities for everyday that a fan maintains his beard. Fans who do not wish to or are unable to grow a playoff beard can participate by pledging a donation to your favorite Caps player. For more information or to enroll in the Capitals’ Beard-a-thon, log onto beardathon.com/capitals.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink

It’s “Turn-Around Day”

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Uncle Mike says today’s the day, that after 77 games the Wings have selected this afternoon as the time to start kicking ass with Wing-like regularity.

Whew.  Good news.  ‘cause up to this point they’ve kinda, I don’t know, sucked.

Oh stop.  I know.  49 wins doesn’t equate to sucking.  But by Wing standards? The month of March has sucked. And pretty much every other month preceding has too.

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Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

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