Kukla's Korner

Pressure On These Players

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Brophy of Sportsnet,

Here are 10 players on the hot seat, looking to bounce back from an off year:

Dion Phaneuf, Calgary Flames: The big defenceman doesn’t like to be reminded of his drop in performance last season. When asked about it at Team Canada’s summer orientation camp he got a little indignant, huffing and puffing at reporters….

John Madden, Chicago Blackhawks: Madden has never been mistaken for a Rocket Richard Trophy winner as the NHL’s leader in goals, but to slump to seven goals in 76 games after scoring 20 the year before is simply unacceptable. Madden remains one of the NHL’s best checkers and a threat to score when his team is playing shorthanded, but he has the speed and skill to score at even strength.

more and Sportsnet has a new look, what do you think about it?

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Afternoon Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The acquisition of Heatley makes me rethink the future in San Jose. Wilson looks more like a mad scientist running about the lab tossing chemicals into the beaker with little regard to their compatibility, or combustibility, for that matter. Oh, Doug said the Sharks did their homework - and then some - before acquiring Heatley. Really?

For a group that appears to need more leadership, grit and mental toughness, how is Heatley the answer?

-Jay Feaster at The Hockey News.  Read more...

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dany+heatley

Dave King Hired As Assistant Coach In Phoenix

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Jim Gintonio of the Arizona Republic reports the Coyotes have hired Dave King as an assistant coach and confirms Sean Burke hired as goaltender coach.

added 3:27pm, from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

In a year of incredible uncertainty for the franchise, and particularly their young emerging players, King is just what the Coyotes need at this stage – a teacher, first and foremost, someone who will help the Kyle Turrises and Mikael Boedkers of their world get better.

That’s just a smart business decision, no matter where the franchise might happen to land; no matter who may end up owning the team.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dave+king, sean+burke

How To Explain This To The Kids

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Darren Eliot of Sports Illustrated,

Ever been in a situation where what you’ve believed for so long is suddenly compromised? Well, that’s the experience I had this weekend.

Saturday night, I chaperoned a team of 11-year olds in Nashville as the Predators took on the Columbus Blue Jackets….

Sistito challenged a proven pugilist in Tootoo, which is a very common occurrence in preseason games as it is a way for a young player to show his coach that he’s ready to fulfill a role on the team. Tootoo obliged, which is also common practice for players of his ilk. It’s an unspoken bond of mutual respect. How else is a kid gong to show his mettle if vets decline the willing challenge?

Not surprisingly, the fans rose and cheered as the two exchanged punches. Sistito had an early advantage, raining blows on the smaller Tootoo. But, as so often happens, the veteran weathered the onslaught and started to pummel the wearied youngster, whose helmet came off.

Then it happened.

read on including video of the fight which I also embedded below…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jordin+tootoo, tom+sistito.

Chimera Feels Belanger Should Be Suspended

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tom Reed of Puck-rakers,

Jason Chimera does not care that Eric Belanger’s rap sheet had been clean before Friday night’s hit from behind that sent the Blue Jackets winger off the ice on a stretcher.

He believes Belanger’s check was dirty and that it merits a suspension.

Chimera returned to Columbus on Saturday after he was held overnight in a St. Paul. Minn., hospital for observation. Belanger, a Wild center, rammed Chimera from behind—driving his face into the glass—as Chimera was trying to help teammates clear the puck from the defensive zone. Chimera’s face was driven into the ga

Chimera, who’s seen a replay, attached a graphic analogy to the hit and Belanger’s reputation as a clean player.

“It was a cheap hit, it was a dirty play,” Chimera said.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: eric+belanger, jason+chimera

Try Negotiating

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Here’s an idea Versus, why don’t you get a deal worked out with Directv instead of telling us what to do.

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: directv

Groin Issues In Detroit

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

Henrik Zetterberg, Dan Cleary, Todd Bertuzzi and Jason Williams are dealing with nagging groin injuries, nothing serious. Zetterberg and Cleary stayed off the ice and hope to skate and play later this week. Bertuzzi and Williams practiced Monday but aren’t ready to play.

“Maybe it’s 2-3 percent better today than Friday, so it’s going the right way,’’ Zetterberg said. “Going to have a new evaluation tomorrow and we’ll see what that will bring.’’

He is hoping to make his preseason debut Friday at home against Toronto.

Cleary said he hurt his groin in practice Saturday. He said no tests were needed.

“I think we caught it at a good time,’’ Cleary said. “Get some games in this weekend and be ready to go.’’

more

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

NHL Live Returns Next Week

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Ken Schott of the Daily Gazette,

“NHL Live,” the midday talkshow about the NHL, returns to Sirius XM radio and the NHL Network Sept. 28 at noon.

Show producer Gregg Baldinger told me that there would be a rotation of show hosts (Rob Simpson, Deb Placey, Sam Rosen and Don La Greca) and analysts (EJ Hradek, Billy Jaffe, Joe Micheletti, Dave Maloney and former Albany River Rat Jim Dowd.

NBC NHL analyst Mike Milbury will join the show this year as a weekly spot on Thursdays. Milbury joins an insider linup with TSN hockey analyst Bob MckNezie, NBC abd Versus analyst Eddie Olczyk, USA Today hockey writer Kevin Allen and former Tampa Bay Lightning general manager Jay Feaster.

Filed in: NHL Media, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Bouillon Signs With Nashville

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via TSN,

Unrestricted free agent defenceman Francis Bouillon is once a again a Nashville Predator.

According to TSN.ca’s french languauge sister site, RDS.ca, the 33-year old has signed a one-year, $750,000 contract.

Bouillon, who has spent the majority of his nine NHL seasons with the Montreal Canadiens, did play four games for the Predators back in October of 2002, after he was claimed by the team during the waiver draft.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: francis+bouillon

All Malkin

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dmitry Chesnokov at PuckDaddy,

What do you think about Ovechkin’s comments about him leaving the NHL to play in Sochi (2014 Winter Olympics)? Will you join him?

There is nothing to add to what he said. I completely agree with Alex. I have exactly the same opinion. We even spoke to each other about it on one occasion. That’s why I agree. This is my dream [to play in Sochi]. Especially because this is going to take place in Russia. There is a buzz over there already. And if I am in good form, if I am a candidate for a roster spot, and if I am invited, there is no way I will refuse.

What if the NHL tells you that you can’t go? What if there will be some sanctions?

I would rather pay fines and still go. If there is something serious like a disqualification for a couple of years in the NHL, if there is something like this I will probably still go because I can even leave to Russia to play. It is very difficult to say right now. But I can give you 100% that I will go [to Sochi].

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: evgeni+malkin

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