Kukla's Korner

So Far The Calgary Flames Are Beating The Odds

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Starting the season, oddsmakers had the Flames as the longest of long shots – 100 to 1 or more – to win the Stanley Cup. Recently, they’ve been upgraded to 40 to 1. Now, at the very least, they have played themselves into the mix.

Year over year, the biggest difference this season is the work ethic the Flames became known for a year ago has been translated into points in the standings. The reality is, there’s a lot of hockey left to play and early enthusiasm can easily fade in the grind of the regular season and before the adrenalin rush of the playoff race licks in.

It is one reason why coach Bob Hartley divides the season into a series of seven-game segments, mimicking a playoff series.

“Internally, we have that seven-game mindset, and we really believe in that and follow that,” defenceman Mark Giordano said. “We’re in a good spot. We’re over .500. It’s still early. There’s still a lot of time to go both ways, so we have to make sure we maintain a good mindset. If we lose one, we try to bounce right back.

“But when you get this confidence that we have going right now, I think it’s really important to pile up as many points as possible to get yourselves right in that hunt – and then stay in it for as long as possible.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Video- Highlights From The Four NHL Games Last Night

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

3 1/2 minutes of NHL action on Monday.

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Quick take, Red Wings-Senators: Too close but two points, and a welcome two goals for Weiss

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Red Wings' 4-3 victory over the Ottawa Senators wasn't a textbook performance--unless you're reading the Wings,' "How to struggle in the first game back from a road trip" paperback. The Wings were damn strong and dominant at some points and downright lay-down-and-put-up-the-welcome-mat sloppy in front of Jimmy Howard at others, and the third-period let-down was painfully predictable to watch and equally terrifying, but Howard was up to the task, and on a night when Stephen Weiss rightfully stole the spotlight, the Wings at least got the two points and got to say they scared themselves while living to fight another day.

Yes, Kyle Quincey made some boneheaded plays (and took a dumb penalty), but he was mostly solid; Weiss showed the kind of scoring promise that the Red Wings hope he'll be able to deliver on a long, healthy basis;

Xavier Ouellet's been surprisingly shaky at times, but he's learning on the job, and his teammates aren't making it an easy job;

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Cliches

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

Start on time. Puck possession. The right side of the puck.

We just got to get pucks in deep and get in on the forecheck and get pucks at the net.

We just need to get more shots and get traffic in front of the net.

We need to play a full 60 minutes.

We just got to take it one shift at a time.

We just got to give it 110% every shift.

I got to play my game and do everything within my control.

 I know I’m struggling, but I just got to keep working hard and hopefully things start going my way.

 We have to play our game and play to our strengths and we should be okay.

Upper/lower body injury.

We just didn’t get the bounces.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Video- Goals Of The Week

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Sportsnet style...

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Video- Game Day Preview With Ken Kal

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

via the Wings' YouTube channel,

Featuring - Ken Kal, Henrik Zetterberg, Tomas Tatar, Stephen Weiss, Mike Babcock, and Justin Abdelkader with Pavel Datsyuk.

Nice jab from Datsyuk on Abdelkader too...

 

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

The Pressure In Edmonton

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damien Cox of Sportsnet,

The pressure is mounting in Edmonton, the pressure to do something. Anything. Now.

Which is, of course, absolutely the wrong idea. It’s the kind of thinking that has, for example, kept the Toronto Maple Leafs away from the winner’s circle for 47 years.

The idea, assuming this was all a plan, was to build a powerful hockey machine in Edmonton, something similar to the squad that ruled the sport in the 1980s. Even if that was impossible in a salary cap era, multiple high picks over multiple years was supposed to deliver a championship worthy outfit.

It hasn’t yet. But that doesn’t mean it won’t.

But it won’t if the plan gets changed now and decisions are made to make the short-term more palatable.

This was always going to be extremely painful. And one imagines it must be for Oiler loyalists.

continued plus numerous other hockey topics...

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

Easy On Those Alfredsson Rumors

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

from Bill Roose of DetroitRedWings.com,

Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg says everyone should tap the brakes over those unconfirmed reports.

“So far it’s just rumors,” he said. “I know he’s trying to get his back better, doing his rehab part, skating a little bit. I won’t say that its over until it’s over.”

Even though back pain limited him to 68 games last season – his only campaign in Detroit – Alfredsson led the team in scoring with 18 goals and 49 points.

Zetterberg remains in contact with Alfredsson, and believes the six-time All Star has something left in the tank.

“Absolutely, just the way he played last year, his presence here in the locker room and on the ice, on the power play,” Zetterberg said. “He’s one of the best players and one of the best leaders that we’ve had, and we all hope that he has one more run in him.”

read on for more including Mike Babcock on Pat Quinn and Pavel Datsyuk on Viktor Tikhonov...

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

The USA Hockey Foundation May Purchase Compuware Arena

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo./PLYMOUTH, Mich. - The USA Hockey Foundation and Compuware Arena have an agreement in place, that subject to due diligence, could result in the Foundation acquiring the Plymouth, Michigan, facility by the first half of 2015.

“Both parties felt it best to make public that there is intention to move forward with a sale, however, there are many steps in the process left to complete and nothing is final at this point,” said Mike Vellucci, representing Compuware Arena on behalf of owner Peter Karmanos. “It’s important to note that the Compuware youth program would remain at Compuware Arena and be supported by Mr. Karmanos. Further, Mr. Karmanos will continue to own the Plymouth Whalers. While there are likely to be questions, out of respect for the on-going process and confidentiality involved, we’ll have no further comment.”

“Our intention is to relocate the National Team Development Program to the facility and also use it to host and showcase other USA Hockey programs and international events,” said Ron DeGregorio, president of The USA Hockey Foundation and USA Hockey, Inc. “In addition, keeping the current users of the building is important to both us and Pete Karmanos. There are a number of issues we’re still working through, and while I know people will have questions, we’ll have nothing further to say until a final resolution is reached.”

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

The Chicago Blackhawks Have Had Their Ups And Downs

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tracey Myers of CSNChicago,

Twenty-one games down, 61 games to go.

Yes, boys and girls, we’re just past the quarter mark of the 2014-15 season. The Blackhawks have been very good at times, mediocre at others. If the playoffs started today the Blackhawks would be seventh in the Western Conference.

But the playoffs don’t begin today, so let’s move on from the nonsensical “if.” This is about what the Blackhawks have done, or haven’t done, to be in seventh right now. So while the Blackhawks take Monday off, let’s look at what’s worked and what needs work.

What needs work

Individual games. Bryan Bickell is struggling again. Andrew Shaw was, too, before he was injured. Marian Hossa broke out of a scoring slump on Saturday but offensively he’s been quieter than usual. The Blackhawks are at their best when everyone’s doing a little something out there. They haven’t been getting enough contributions across the board yet.

more

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

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