Kukla's Korner

A New Year For The Bruins

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Steve Conroy of the Boston Herald,

Of the more tangible goals, Julien wants his team to score more than it did last year without sacrificing the stringent team defense that became its hallmark. The B’s finished fourth in the Eastern Conference in goals-against with 215, 12th in goals scored with 206.

A healthy Bergeron should go a long way toward helping in that department. But perhaps even more titillating for Bruins fans was the performance of Phil Kessel [stats] in last year’s playoffs. After being benched for Games 2, 3 and 4 vs. Montreal, he was reinserted into the lineup and became a force.

Julien said he took no satisfaction in apparently pushing the right button with Kessel and gave the youngster credit for not sulking. But he wasn’t surprised by the authority with which he returned to the ice.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Hunger Back For Modano

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tracey Myers of the Star-Telegram,

...as Modano enters his 19th NHL season, he’s feeling that hunger, that desire for his sport. Sure, training camp, which begins Friday, doesn’t bring out the giddiness of many players; but that regular-season schedule isn’t far away, and those games are what have Modano ready to roll again.

“There’s some excitement, knowing we’re very close and our team’s better adding the guys that we did,” he said. “We’re looking forward to that again. I think we feel the components are there, the players are there, that people are coming into their age.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+modano

Hockey Canada Wants Gretzky

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,

Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson revealed yesterday that he and The Great One are in discussions concerning Gretzky’s inclusion—and potential role—on the 2010 Canadian Olympic team, which will be under the omnipresent spotlight at the Vancouver Winter Games….

The options are open for Gretzky. He might be brought in to run the show for a third consecutive time if his coaching commitments with the Coyotes do not interfere. Maybe he could take over the coaching reigns from Pat Quinn, who coached the two previous Canadian Olympic teams. Or, he might serve as a consultant to a managerial team that could include the likes of Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland, assistant Steve Yzerman and coach Mike Babcock.

However it plays out, Gretzky is badly wanted.

more

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Around The League

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

They keep saying Mathieu Schneider’s leaving the Ducks for the rival Los Angeles Kings, so Anaheim can divest itself of his $5.75-million contract to sign winger Teemu Selanne, but another scenario to watch for: Adrian Aucoin and his $4 million a year heading from the Calgary Flames to L.A. instead. Calgary general manager Darryl Sutter and his Kings counterpart Dean Lombardi are buddies from their San Jose days.

The Vancouver Canucks are looking at free-agent winger Mark Parrish, probably thinking he’d be a nice fit with the brothers Sedin. If Anson Carter could kick in 30 with Henrik and Daniel, no reason why Parrish couldn’t do the same…

more NHL talk plus KHL talk too…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Legein May Play Hockey Again

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from NHL.com,

According to Legein’s agent, Doug Woods, whose client was a member of last year’s Canadian World Junior championship team and a second-round draft pick of the Blue Jackets in 2007, he has had conversations with Legein regarding the subject.

“I think after assessing the situation, I’ve learned that he had a lot of pressure on him the last year,” Woods told NHL.com. “He’s now seriously thinking about it and working some things out right now, and I feel confident that there’s a good possibility he will be back. We’re talking very regularly and certainly he’s willing to discuss it now. Once I return to Toronto, we’ll be talking more about it.”

more and othe topics from the NHL Prospects Tournament in Traverse City.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: stefan+legein

No Decision For Ducks Captain

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Wood of Ducks Blog at the OC Register,

Scott Niedermayer or Chris Pronger?

Those seem to be the obvious candidates to serve as Ducks captain this season, but Coach Randy Carlyle wasn’t ready to make that call Saturday while watching a collection of the organization’s top prospects practice at Honda Center.

“That’s something that I will discuss further with our management, with Brian Burke, with Bob Murray, and I will make a decision on that probably just before the season starts,” Carlyle said. “It’s open to a certain amount of discussion.”

read on

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

Top 5 List

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

Players across the NHL are packing their bags and heading for training camps.

Here’s Sun Media’s look around the league with camps set to open.

TOP 5 ON THE RISE

1. Chicago: GM Dale Tallon was aggressive in the off-season. Not only did he sign Campbell, but he also picked up G Cristobal Huet in free agency. There’s a lot of talk G Nikolai Khabibulin is either going to be dealt or waived before the season begins.

much more and other Top 5 categories too, including teams on the slide and Top 5 movers…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Gaborik A Tough Read

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from John Shipley of the Pioneer Press,

Gaborik’s appetite for staying in Minnesota has been hard to read. Never what you would call emotional, he nonetheless appears indifferent, saying repeatedly he is “willing to stay.” Although the sides are negotiating, it’s frankly hard for the layman to understand the holdup.

The bottom line is the Wild have offered the right winger a long-term contract that would make him one of the highest-paid players in the NHL, with an average salary in the $8.5 million range. And the seven-year, $57.75 deal signed Thursday by Carolina’s Eric Staal — whose potential and career trajectory is similar — seems to fortify this as a reasonable offer.

So, if Gaborik were completely sold on the Wild, wouldn’t he have signed by now?

“That’s why this is scary,” Nanne said, “because it’s not a money issue.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: marian+gaborik

Brandon Sugden Reinstated

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From David Singer at HockeyFights.com,

I just got a call from Brandon Sugden.  Bill Daly called him earlier tonight and said he spoke with the teams that were blocking his removal from the retirement list and that they’ve all agreed to unblock him.

When I asked him how he felt, Sugar said it’s a huge weight off of his shoulders and he’s looking forward to attending Islanders training camp, which starts Thursday in Moncton, New Brunswick.  He added that he has every intention on making the team and he feels he can help the Islanders.

continued…

For more on today’s developments, check out TSN. For the complete back-story, an earlier article at HockeyFights.com.

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brandon+sugden

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“I want to be a consistent team from start to finish, a team that plays with speed and pace and tempo and energy and has work habits and intelligence. And I’d like to see a little better balance between our goal production and our goals against, more of a gap…We can place a premium on production, and every team does; I put more of a premium on being the best team on the ice every night. We believe with what we’ve been able to do with our roster is create a little more versatility in our offensive punch, we have some guys whose offense has been great in the past and we believe will continue here,...”

-New York Rangers Coach Tom Renney.  More on the Rangers by Steve Zipay at his Blue Notes Blog.

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: tom+renney

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