Kukla's Korner

Kopecky Will Have Tests After Taking Fist To The Head

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

Detroit Red Wings forward Tomas Kopecky will undergo tests today to determine if he sustained any more damage Thursday during a third-period fight with Anaheim’s Francois Beauchemin.

Kopecky, his right cheek swollen, said he felt OK and his vision was good after Beauchemin battered him with a flurry of punches. Kopecky will have X-rays and a CT scan….

“When you take a punch to the head it’s always scary, so we’ll see,’’ Kopecky said. “Right now I don’t know (the damage). I feel all right.’‘

read on with video of the fight…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: francois+beauchemin, tomas+kopecky

Canucks Play Anti-Hockey Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,

Here’s the thing about trying to win a Stanley Cup playoff game 1-0.

You can string four men across the blueline and choke the life out of the other team’s attack.

You can make high-percentage plays and manage the puck until you’re blue in the face.

If you follow your game plan, you can even succeed in anesthetizing 22,682 frenzied Chicagoans in the city’s most important game in a decade.

But there’s also a flip side to playing anti-hockey.

If you’re playing the game in your end, if you’re constantly surrendering possession of the puck without attempting to mount an attack, you’re playing with fire and, against a team like the Chicago Blackhawks, you will be burned.


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

Hiller Lost His ‘A’ Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Stephens at NHL.com,

...on Thursday night, Hiller’s “A” game was nowhere to be found. Johan Franzen and Marian Hossa each scored twice—once each on stoppable shots—to punch a hole in Hiller’s mystique and Mikael Samuelsson’s early third-period goal ended his night. Jean-Sebastien Giguere, a former Conn Smythe Trophy winner, who lost the No. 1 job late in the regular season, saw his first postseason action after Hiller had his worst night of the playoffs.

“We just weren’t good enough as a team, and the goalie is part of that,” Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said….

“It was sure not my best game,” Hiller said. “The pucks just went through me, which shouldn’t happen. You can’t have your ‘A’ game every day.”...

“He was playing really well for them,” Hossa said. “Tonight, we finally got him going and we found a way to score on him. After that, they made a change on the goalies. You keep putting pucks at his feet and good things will happen.”


added 8:29am, At AnaheimDucks.com, you can read some post-game quotes from both sides, stuff like this…

Francois Beauchemin:  We kind of beat ourselves tonight. They played well, but at the same time we didn’t do the things we wanted to do.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jonas+hiller

Ducks Just Weren’t Good Enough

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Helene Elliott of the LA Times,

The Red Wings’ offense was too deep to be stifled by the Ducks forever.

The question for the Ducks now is whether they can silence it again after it awoke with a roar on Thursday.

Stirred by Coach Mike Babcock’s astute line juggling—and benefiting from sloppy defensive play by a Ducks team that missed rugged defenseman James Wisniewski—the Red Wings scored twice in the second period and twice in the third to roll to a 6-3 victory that tied the teams’ second-round playoff series at two games each.

“We had a pretty decent start, but we kind of lost our game after that,” said goaltender Jonas Hiller, less than invincible in yielding five goals on 33 shots before he was replaced by Jean-Sebastien Giguere.


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

Just Like That, Wings Take Back Home Ice Advantage

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Wings beat the Duck 6-3 and the game changed when Mike Babcock put together the line of Hossa, Franzen and Filppula.

That line combined for 7 points, including 2 goals from Hossa and Franzen.

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

A Playoff Goon

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

In general, the Stanley Cup playoffs have fewer penalties and less use for goons who offer little in hockey ability beyond a willingness to fight, but sometimes exceptions exist.  The main exception to this rule in this season’s playoffs has been Rick Rypien of the Vancouver Canucks.  Rypien leads the playoffs with 38 penalty minutes in his eight games so far.  That gives him almost five penalty minutes per game.  He has contributed one assist (which he got in tonight’s game) and has a -1 +/-  rating.  His +/- is not quite worst on the team, there are a few players at -2, but they are all players who get significantly more ice time than Rypien does.  The Canucks have only played Rick Rypien about seven and a half minutes a game.

In a tight series with Chicago (it is tied at two games each) is it sensible for the Canucks to be dressing a player like this?  They could be playing Jannik Hansen in place of Rypien.  During the regular season, Hansen certainly appeared more valuable.  He outscored Rypien 21 points to 3.  Hansen played 14:42 a game in 55 games, while Rypien played 9:19 a game in only 12 games.  Why is Hansen deemed less valuable now, when the goonery Rypien provides is less valuable now?

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

Blackhawks Overcome Deficit Again

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Dutaschek of the Globe and Mail,

This is how quickly things can change in the NHL playoffs, when the quick-strike Chicago Blackhawks are in the building.

For the better part of 57 minutes last night, the Blackhawks looked as if they’d dug themselves into a black scoring hole.

They fell behind by a goal to the Vancouver Canucks, couldn’t seem to get it back, and were in danger of dropping consecutive home playoff games at the United Center, where they’d excelled this NHL season.

But these Blackhawks have been nothing if not resilient in these playoffs — overcoming deficits, large and small throughout — and they demonstrated that capacity again last night, essentially saving their playoff lives with a 2-1 come-from-behind win over the visiting Canucks.


added 1:09am, from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

But like they have all along in their thrill-a-minute postseason, Martin Havlat forced overtime—and ignited a United Center crowd that sat on their hands all night—with a wrist shot from the high slot that handcuffed Luongo.

“We’ve got a new series,” said Havlat, who scored his fourth of the playoffs.

“Whoa,” Hawks GM Dale Tallon told ESPN.com in the home dressing room, holding his chest. “I thought my ticker was going to go. These kids never give up. They’re a resilient bunch.”

read on

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

Pierre McGuire Would Draw Attention In Minnesota

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Dowbiggin of the Globe and Mail,

If Leipold wants excitement, he’ll get it from the “Monster Man.” Think Don Cherry without the Chinese-tablecloth jacket and the Afghan mission. “Bam!”

But the former Hartford Whalers head coach is not just another Cherry. McGuire loudly stumped for no red line and is not a member of Hockey Night in Canada’s Granite Club when it comes to skill players and fighting. He favours visors. He’s not above eviscerating a Sean Avery, but prefers the positive approach — something he plans to take into any GM’s job.

Says McGuire, who won the 1992 Stanley Cup as an assistant coach with the Pittsburgh Penguins: “With the access I’ve had in the past 12 years to successful and unsuccessful teams, you can compile unbelievable reserves of information. I’m a better hockey person as a result. You saw that with John Davidson in St. Louis.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pierre+mcguire

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“Mr. Balsillie is acting, again, in total disregard of any rules, or any structure. . . . I would be very surprised if the board would look favourably on the way that Mr. Balsillie has conducted himself in this instance.”

“He makes his own decisions and he’s making a decision that this is the way he wants to get into the National Hockey League. We don’t usually like to pick fights, but we end them.”

-NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly on Jim Balsillie.  More from the CP via TSN.

added 11:129pm, from Paul Waldie and David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,

The group backing Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie’s bid for the Phoenix Coyotes unleashed its sharpest attack yet on the National Hockey League, alleging in a lawsuit that the league is operating like an “illegal cartel” by blocking Mr. Balsillie’s effort to move the Coyotes to Hamilton.

“The NHL is excluding competition and restraining trade in [the United States and Canada] through the application of unreasonable restrictions in its constitution and bylaws, which are preventing the relocation of the Coyotes from Phoenix, Ariz., to Hamilton, Ont.,” said the lawsuit filed Thursday in Phoenix.


Filed in: NHL Teams, d, NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bill+daly, jim+balsillie

Here’s What We Need: A Crew And Good Captain Well Seasoned

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Was this foreshadowing this morning? 

I’m feeling optimistic.  I was sick when I got up, stayed sick for a few hours, and was even queezy when I started this post.  But right now I’m feeling pretty good and here’s why.  One word.

Lidstrom.  It has to be the Captain.  One way or another it has to be him.

Look at the post title again and you’ll see that it was.  Intentional?  Absolutely not.  Now, check this out…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

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