Kukla's Korner

The overnight report: Red Wings-Flyers wrap-up and thoughts on a team in progress

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The more I think about the Red Wings' 4-2 win over the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night, and the more that I look at the standings with interest for the first time this season, the more I think that being 12-5-and-5 on American Thanksgiving--a.k.a. Ken Holland's, "If you're in the playoff picture now you're probably going to make it, and if you're not, you're probably not" mark--the more I think that the Wings are where they should be.

I'm still a believer in the concept that the Red Wings needed two full seasons to realize their full post-Nicklas Lidstrom potential and forge an identity as a younger, faster, more potent and yet slightly "thinner" team, and on Wednesday, I thought that the Wings' performance was reflective of a team in the process of finding its edge.

The fact that the Wings took advantage of the struggling Flyers and their absolutely dreadful road record, at this point in the year at least, felt more like something that had to be done as opposed to something to hang one's hat upon.

Wings coach Mike Babcock made a particularly intriguing set of comments after the game, as noted by MLive's Ansar Khan...

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Prospect news: Griffins take out Amerks as Mark Zengerle celebrates Thanksgiving ‘at home’

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Red Wings' AHL affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins, is spending American Thanksgiving engaging in a "road-and-still-on-the-road" series against the Rochester Americans, and Grand Rapids got off to a good start on Wednesday, defeating the Amerks 3-1.

The Griffins' website posted a game recap...

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Quick take, Red Wings-Flyers: A slightly lackadaisical but relatively smooth win

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Detroit Red Wings' 5-2 win over the Philadelphia Flyers was sometimes dominating, sometimes scary and sometimes a whole lot of watching gravy grow skin in between moments of individual and team greatness.

Jimmy Howard was incredibly solid early, late and overall, the Wings were dreadful for the first 10 minutes of the 1st period and the first 10 minutes of the 3rd period, and just as half the damn crowd was gone by the 3rd period to enjoy Thanksgiving Eve, the Wings had mentally checked out to the point that one was worried that it'd be another "Ottawa game," if not a carbon copy of the Wings' blow-it game vs. Philly back in October...

But the Wings got their shit together in time to ensure that the Flyers never got any closer than 4-2 in the 3rd, Pavel Datsyuk scored 2 goals in his return from a groin injury, Jakub Kindl of all people had two assists, Stephen Weiss had a goal and an assist, Darren Helm had two assists, the PK was 3-for-4 and the PP was 1-for-3 on a night that the Wings needed to persevere against both the Flyers and the bad habits they're still trying to shake on "American Thanksgiving" eve.

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Evening Line- Bob Nicholson

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“We can’t start to just tear everything down, we have to get a solid plan as we go forward here of how we can get this team to win a Stanley Cup. We’re a long ways from that where our record is today — we all realize that — we just can’t panic here and make major changes unless they’re going to help us in the future.”

-Bob Nicholson,viice-chairman of the Oilers Entertainment Group on Prime Time Sports this evening.  More from Mike Johnston of Sportsnet and you can listen/watch the whole interview too.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bob+nicholson

Giving Thanks

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit

This is a little more somber tone tonight. I would like to thank each and every one of you for being here to keep our little sanctuary up and running. It's not easy being a Wing's Fan some nights, but, we all come back for more.

I would like to thank Paul Kukla for posting whatever I send him.  I am not a blogger, I am a fan with an opinion, and he still puts it up every game.

And most importantly, I would like to thank our Chief, Bill Houlihan, out there on the high seas, keeping us all safe. There would not be an A2Y without him, and his special way to put into words, whatever it is we are feeling.

Now, let's win two in a row!

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PETA To The Nashville Predators, Please Stop Throwing Catfish On The Ice

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Stromgren of The Tennessean,

PETA wants Predators fans to stop throwing catfish onto the ice after goals.

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sent a letter to the Predators on Wednesday and offered to ship 1,000 plastic fish in exchange for prohibiting the practice.

While the practice of throwing a catfish is not a routine after every goal at Predators at Bridgestone Arena, a catfish was thrown out after Ryan Ellis' goal during the second period in Tuesday night's 4-3 shootout win over Los Angeles.

The tradition goes back more than a decade as a Music City response to Detroit's octopus.

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Martin Brodeur Will Get A Tryout With The St. Louis Blues

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

added 5:10pm,

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: martin+brodeur

Presuming a little too much shiny happiness regarding Alfredsson’s retirement and a Sens reunion

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

ESPN's Pierre LeBrun just penned an article confirming that Daniel Alfredsson will announce his retirement from the NHL next Thursday, and that's yielded some stupidity from Darcy Tucker and what I'd delicately describe as an overly-optimistic set of expectations for December 4th's festivities from the Ottawa Citizen's Wayne Scanlan:

Alfredsson, the longtime captain of the Ottawa Senators, returns to the fold next Thursday, Dec. 4, to announce his retirement from the NHL during a media conference at the Canadian Tire Centre.

Fittingly, it’s ‘Throwback Thursday’ at the rink, a night for Senators heritage jerseys and now, a Senators legacy player: No. 11, the man affectionately known throughout the community as “Alfie.”

In town for a game that night will be the New York Islanders, a team the Senators used to toy with back in Alfredsson’s tenure (times have changed, the Islanders are a juggernaut, go figure). Expect numerous game night interruptions for chants of “Alfie!” Expect the crowd to monitor the time of each period, counting down the seconds to that moment when the clock shows 11:11.

...

Knowing Alfredsson, he didn’t ask [Bryan] Murray to “go for a drive” just to talk about himself and his retirement. He wanted to speak to his former GM in the wake of the revelation that Murray’s cancer was incurable. It wasn’t their first conversation in recent weeks, but it was an important face-to-face meeting.

The result – Alfredsson is to be a Senator for life, with a future place in the organization if he so desires. As you were. All is right with the world again.

Alfredsson will be remembered as a Senator, but he lives in Birmingham, Michigan now, and while the ailing Bryan Murray "went for a drive" with Alfredsson last week, I'm sure that Ken Holland, Ryan Martin and Kris Draper will lobby #11 to begin his post-hockey career learning the ropes in Detroit.

That, and he may want to go back to Sweden, too. It's up to Alfredsson, and a year-and-a-half doesn't necessarily mend all wounds.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

St. Louis Blues Goaltender Brian Elliott Considered Week-To-Week With Injury

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post Dispatch,

The Blues have yet to say how much time Brian Elliott could miss, but they announced in a press release Wednesday that the goaltender "will be sidelined with a lower-body injury."

Coach Ken Hitchcock said Elliott was "week-to-week."

"We'll kind of address it every Sunday and see how he is," Hitchcock said. "That's about as close as I can give you right now. He's had this type of injury before and has recovered quickly and nicely so we're hoping for the former but we don't want to say it's five or six days and then it's 14 so we'll leave it at that.

"If it was a skater, this would be moment to moment, but he's a goalie and you need your knees, especially if you're a butterfly goalie. We're not taking any risks here. We want him at 100 (percent) and Jake (Allen) can cover the load for a little while here."

continued

Below, watch how Elliott was injured....

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Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brian+elliott

Chris Chelios rankles some feathers while discussing Brendan Shanahan

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

I don't have a problem with Chris Chelios's take on Brendan Shanahan--given that Chelios, whose book tour for his Memoir, Made in America, will resume in suburban Chicago on December 2nd, was a staunch advocate for the NHLPA during two lockouts, while Shanahan not only reached out to the NHL during the 04-05 lockout but also ended up working for the league...

But Chelios appeared on TSN 1050's Leafs Lunch today, and his suggestion that the Maple Leafs' president is a "politician" of course rankled some feathers:

Hall of Fame defenceman Chris Chelios joined Leafs Lunch to discuss his autobiography “Overtime” sharing some stories from the book and why it was time to write it. He also discussed some candid comments he made about his relationship with Maple Leafs President Brendan Shanahan in the book, and whether Shanahan is suited for the Leafs job.

As far as I understand the situation, Shanahan left the Red Wings in the summer of 2006 because he felt that Mike Babcock gave veteran players no deference and because he wanted to further his post-playing career, which probably was going to be helped by playing in Montreal or New York instead of Detroit, but that was his prerrogative, and it's Chelios's prerrogative to suggest that his former teammate isn't his favorite human being.

And it's Toronto Sports Talk Radio's prerrogative to turn this into an international incident, I suppose:

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