Kukla's Korner

A Different Kind Of Wild Team

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Todd Kimberely at NHL.com,

The club’s 23-man roster saw its fair share of movement. The biggest move was Gaborik leaving for the Rangers, with Martin Havlat arriving as his big-dollar replacement.

And Leipold himself has gone on record with his belief that an accelerated style of play will also boost the Wild’s profile, allowing the club to attract top-end free agents who shied away from the Wild’s previously conservative, plodding pace.

“In the past I’ve been frustrated, not knowing why those unrestricted free agents, people who have the ability to move where they want to, wouldn’t choose this as their home,” said Leipold. “I think the system might have been something that held them back. I believe Chuck feels that way ... I think this may be the missing piece. Maybe they’ll look at us in a different light now.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Two Ducks Get A Taste Of A Real Battle

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Marcia C. Smith of the OC Register,

An intense explosion rocked the observation bridge where Ducks forwards George Parros and Bobby Ryan stood a week ago among Army soldiers. Startled, their bodies shook. Talking about hockey halted as soon as the battlefield simulation began.

Smoke billowed from between cinderblock buildings in this fictional Iraqi village of Medina Wasl, which was erected as the situational training ground for “The Worst Day” a soldier will see during combat.

No one was safe from this insurgents’ ambush scenario that was staged in the marketplace below. The local vendors, who were dressed in authentic Iraqi garb and who moments earlier had been selling everything from flowers and ladies’ purses to old stereos and appliances outside their stucco storefronts, ran screaming through the street in horror and fear, searching for cover.

They had to step over lifeless bodies soaking in pools of blood. They ducked to dodge live artillery fire. An Iraqi man pulled a woman from a taxi, her arm severed and leaving a trail of blood that stained the asphalt.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bobby+ryan, george+parros

Stillchoozi?

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Interesting rumor on HF Boards and you can take it for what you will.  Just remember, if it comes true it was an (Iwo5) and you owe me fifty for a season’s pass.

Jimmy Devellano says Bertuzzi a wing
Or will be very soon

Read the whole thread and you’ll see there is (a) no link but (2) some fairly solid views.  Either way, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Jimmy D was talking when he shouldn’t be, or when he doesn’t have all the info.

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Burke Says Kaberle Not Moving

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,

Attention K-Mart shoppers, don’t bother looking for that last-second Tomas Kaberle deal.

Asked yesterday just what time today the defenceman’s trade window closes, general manager Brian Burke e-mailed: “It doesn’t matter when. We’re not moving him.”

A post-season opportunity to trade Kaberle opened in his contract when the Leafs missed the playoffs. But outside of discussions with Boston for Phil Kessel at the draft, nothing developed and Burke decided to see what Kaberle can do this year when protected by a tougher Toronto defence.

Burke’s hope to trade another defenceman for help at forward remain unfulfilled to date.

How many times did we hear from supposed experts that Kaberle was about to be traded?  It is now over, until the talks start up again near the trade deadline…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: tomas+kaberle

If Richard Peddie Took The Stand

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Perkins of the Toronto Star,

Judge Redfield T. Baum has denied Jim Balsillie’s attempt to have Richard Peddie testify at the Phoenix Coyotes’ bankruptcy case.

But a guy can dream, can’t he?

Attorney: Mr. Peddie, what is your current position?

Peddie: I am the lord high exchequer of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment and I sitteth at the right hand of the almighty Ontario Teachers Pension Plan.

Attorney: You sitteth at the right hand? What about Larry Tanenbaum?

Peddie: The Plan is the father, I am the son and Larry is the Holy Ghost.

Attorney: Thank you. Now, Mr. Peddie, what is the stated goal of Maple Leaf Sports?

Peddie: To win the Stanley Cup.

Judge Baum: Mr. Peddie, I remind you that you are under oath. ... Bailiff, please instruct the spectators to stop laughing or I will clear the court.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Top 20 Offensive Zone Starters

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

Recently in this summer’s look at sabermetrics and hockey, I have introduced the concept of zone starts.  I recently listed the top 20 defensive zone starters, the players who most frequently are on the ice for faceoffs in their defensive zone and not those in their offensive zone.  This is a measure of players who play tough defensive roles with their teams and are thus more likely to have poor Corsi Numbers.  Today I will look at the opposite situation, players who are on the ice for the most offensive zone faceoffs minus defensive zone faceoffs.  These numbers were pulled from NHL game summaries by Vic Ferrari at Irreverent Oiler Fans.

Here are the top 20 offensive zone starters in the 2008/09 season:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

Questions For Team USA

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Craig Custance of the Sporting News,

Longtime American warriors—as Team USA GM Brian Burke likes to call them—such as Chris Chelios, Jeremy Roenick and Keith Tkachuk won’t be battling for roster spots when the camp opens Monday in suburban Chicago. Instead, it’s a younger, faster, American team that hopes to spend a few days developing chemistry and learning coach Ron Wilson’s system.

Factor in the expected appearance of Patrick Kane, who was arrested following an incident with a Buffalo cab driver, and there’s plenty to watch for during the three-day camp, including:

1. Will Patrick Kane talk?

The American players know that there might be a little more media coverage surrounding the Olympic orientation, thanks to Kane’s arrest and the proximity of the event to Chicago.

“If there were going to be 20 (media) guys there, now there will be 40,” said Hainsey, a key member of the improving Atlanta Thrashers defense. “From our side, we don’t have a clue about what happened.”

more

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: team+usa

A New Face For The Leafs

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Wayne Scanlan of the Ottawa Citizen via the National Post,

Nazem Kadri can’t possibly know what’s in store for him.

Not just because there are always questions about a teenage prospect’s future in professional hockey, but because the 18-year-old centre from Komoka, Ont., southwest of London, is on the verge of becoming just the second Muslim to reach the NHL. (Ramzi Abid played 68 NHL games after being selected in the second round of the 1998 NHL entry draft by the Phoenix Coyotes.)

Unwittingly, Kadri, drafted seventh overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs in June, is entering the NHL at an interesting time for a player of his ethnic background. Kadri’s father, Sam, left war-ravaged Lebanon in the late 1960s, emigrated to Canada and married a Canadian woman of Lebanese descent.

The NHL and especially Hockey Canada are on the prowl for a new face - a player such as Kadri - to represent a rapidly changing demographic, to attract new Canadians to the game.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nazem+kadri

So, You A Betting Man?

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

I’ve been inspired.  How so and how much so?  Well, I’ve begun a series of manifestos, a continuation of a project that started last summer then fizzled out when I lost my stamina.  I’m taking a different approach this time around and I think the results will be better, funnier and more dependable.

And that’s all I’m gonna say about that. But stay tuned.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Oilers Stuck In Neutral

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Edward Fraser of The Hockey News,

It’s one thing for a contending team to be pressed up against the cap ceiling, but quite another for a middling squad to be shackled by financial restraints.

Teams such as the Philadelphia Flyers, Boston Bruins, San Jose Sharks, Detroit Red Wings, Washington Capitals, Calgary Flames, Pittsburgh Penguins and Chicago Blackhawks can take a win-now-and-worry-about-the-future-later attitude because they are all rational Cup contenders. Fans will forgive serial shedding of salary in the wake of a championship high.

Clubs like the Edmonton Oilers, however, don’t look good now and, thanks to roster mismanagement, don’t look good for the future, either.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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