Kukla's Korner

Best Team In The State

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Brunswick News,

Normally, this is when I start yelling at you to get ready for spring training or auto racing. But not this time, at least not yet. Instead, I'm saying you should be paying attention to one team as January creeps closer to February: Your Atlanta Thrashers. Yeah, I know, there's not exactly a whole lot of ice in Glynn County, except in my glass of tea. But that's not the point. The point is the Thrashers may be the best sports team in the state, and yes, I'm including my beloved Braves and your beloved Bulldogs in that blanket statement.
read on

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Sim To Florida

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Sportsnet,

Sportsnet has learned that the Florida Panthers have traded for Philadelphia Flyers winger Jon Sim. Sim has seven goals and seven assists in 39 games played this season. Going to Philadelphia is the Flyers' sixth round draft pick in 2007.

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Are The Olympics Worth It

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Bryan McCabe is the reason many NHL owners and GMs quietly wish the Olympics would go away. And Alexander Frolov. And Joni Pitkanen. And Robert Esche. And a host of elite players recovering from serious injuries on playoff and/or Stanley Cup hopeful teams that nonetheless want desperately to play in the Olympics next month in Torino. Since NHL players were given leave to take part in the Olympic tournament in 1998, it has been the classic case of big picture versus small picture. Is the value of interrupting the NHL routine for two weeks every four years and compressing the schedule to put NHL players on the world stage worth the inherent dangers to individual franchises?
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NHL ON NBC- Week 2 Ratings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The NHL on NBC last Saturday had a 1.3 rating and a 3 share. The ratings were down .2 from week 1. I will post regional ratings when available.

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AO & HL POW

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the NHL via TSN,

Washington Capitals forward Alexander Ovechkin, who tallied seven points (three goals, four assists) in three games, has been named the NHL's Offensive Player of the Week for the period ending Sunday, January 22. New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, who led the Rangers to three victories with a 1.62 goals-against average and .946 save percentage, is the League's Defensive Player of the Week.

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Capping The Cap

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Yesterday, Larry Brooks of the NY Post brought up the fact that the NHLPA is thinking about slashing the cap. Today, in Sports Business Journal (paid sub.), the topic is brought up again.

The NHLPA is mulling an option to lower next season’s salary cap voluntarily so that players can keep more of their paychecks and have less set aside in escrow. Still, many player agents have come out firmly against the idea, and so did a few clubs at the league’s board of governors meeting in December. People at the meeting said New York Rangers governor James Dolan was vociferous in his opposition, wanting to be able to spend as much as possible on player salaries. “This is the type of argument that Alan Eagleson used to push through to curry favor with people on the other side,” said Octagon Hockey President Brian Lawton last week, referring to the former NHLPA president who was later jailed for defrauding players. “It’s a farce.” J.P. Barry, president of IMG Hockey, also is strongly against putting any further limits on salaries. “To put another cap on the cap to address the escrow potential is not a good idea, in my opinion, at this stage,” he said. “We need to give this system time to reveal its flaws and merits.”

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Drury Calls Out Teammates

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Buffalo News,

"I think guys were psyched out." Guys said, "Oh, it's going to be too hard of a game. I don't want to get hit. I'm not going to sacrifice.' And it showed because they beat us to every loose puck." "We gotta get our heads screwed on straight." "When you look up at the clock and there's 15 minutes gone in the first period and we have two shots, that's unacceptable," Drury said. "It really grinded on me, really grinded on a lot of guys in here. That's where my frustration comes from. Psychologically, we figured, "That's how it's going to be,' and we accepted it. They get the two points."
read on

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NHL Game On OLN- HD Version Delayed Again

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The high definition version of the Bruins/Capitals game on OLN will be delayed once again on INHD via Comcast. You can watch the game either at 1:00am tomorrow or at 8:00am tomorrow. The same holds true for next week's game between the Rangers and Flyers. If you want to see the game in HD via Comcast, you will have to catch it at 1:00am on Tuesday, Jan. 31st.

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Not Happy

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

-Grant Marshall was woozy as he was helped off the Garden ice during the first period last night, but the Devils' right winger made his thoughts about the elbow to the jaw from Rangers defenseman Darius Kasparaitis perfectly clear. "I don't think it was clean, but I don't think anything Kasparaitis does is clean," Marshall said. "My neck is pretty stick and sore. He stuck his elbow out and hit me in the chin. My neck kind of snapped to the right. Typical Kasparaitis." The Devils reported that Marshall has a pinched nerve in his neck, although it is possible that he may have suffered a concussion.- via the Star-Ledger
-"I've been in this league for almost 400 games and I've never been called for an illegal stick," said Mara, who was given a two-minute minor penalty. "I really never knew I had (an illegal stick). It was on the borderline. It's my mistake and I take full responsibility for it." When told that Mara was pleading ignorance, coach Wayne Gretzky was skeptical. "That's not true; I'm not buying that," he said. "Those players look at their sticks all day long."- via the Arizona Republic

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Where Did It Go Wrong For Boston

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Daily News Tribune,

Boston fans in a hurry to hang O’Connell -- and perhaps even team owner Jeremy Jacobs -- need to keep a few things in mind about what has gone wrong with the Bruins this season. On the July day when the lockout ended, Jacobs spoke about, "The extraordinary genius," of O’Connell. Jacobs said, "(O’Connell) looks pretty darned bright with what he’s done. He gave us the flexibility to bargain in a more successful way than most teams." Of the several good players the Bruins had allowed to walk away, Jacobs said, "We’ve had to make some tough decisions, but I think they’re going to benefit us." And after the Bruins had signed their share of free agents, Jacobs again lavished praise on the front office, saying it had built a strong club. Analysts across the league predicted the B’s would be among the leading Stanley Cup contenders. That’s the way it looked at the time -- like O’Connell’s team-building had gone quite well.
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