Kukla's Korner

Mixing Politics and Hockey

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Whoever said hockey and politics can’t mix?  James Duthie at the Ottawa Citizen finds us some evidence:

Just take a look at the following actual quotes from the key figures in the race. (Now, I can’t 100-per-cent confirm the context of the statements, but I’m pretty sure I know what they were talking about.)

“I have fought against excessive spending my entire career, but we need to make it a priority to take care of our veterans.’‘
—Republican presidential candidate John McCain, on the Daniel Alfredsson contract extension.

“It’s not something that I’m proud of. It was a mistake as a young man.’‘
—Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, on the time he bet on the Leafs to win the Cup.


Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: barack+obama, john+mccain

Did You Know

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bob Duff of Duffer’s Dabbles at the Windsor Star,

• Friday was the 76th anniversary of the night that Maurice (Rocket) Richard played his first NHL game with the Montreal Canadiens. He wore No. 15 and picked up his first NHL point, an assist 36 seconds into the game, a 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins at the Montreal Forum.

• Former Windsor Spitfire Steve Ott returned to the Dallas Stars’ lineup following a three-game absence due to a groin injury. According to an NHL source, the cause of Ott’s injury came when he was playfully hooked from behind by teammate Sean Avery while taking a shot during practice.

read on for some slap shot talk regarding Al Iafrate…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Niedermayer Thinking 2010

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Iain MacIntyre at the Vancouver Sun,

Scott Niedermayer, the 35-year-old from Cranbrook who will go to the Hockey Hall of Fame when his career ends, said Friday he wants to be part of Team Canada for the 2010 Olympic tournament in Vancouver.

The Anaheim Ducks star hasn’t decided if or where he’ll play in the National Hockey League next season, but knows he wants to play for Canada. That probably means he’ll sign another NHL contract if he becomes an unrestricted free agent next July.

“It would be a great experience if I was able to be part of that team and compete for your country, in your own county, in your home province,” Niedermayer said. “I really haven’t decided [about the NHL], but I’d love to play in the Olympics.”

read on

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

How To Beat A Goal Scoring Slump

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Steve Zipay of Newsday,

“You try to find something that relaxes you, “Naslund said. “Whether it’s watching a movie or listening to music or playing with the kids. I think you need the mental release from thinking about the game and what’s going wrong ... Now, I’m just trying to enjoy it more than anything, have fun and enjoy the moment. I always think it’s nice to get your mind off hockey. I don’t watch hockey when I’m at home, I try to get a breather.”

more on Markus Naslund…

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: markus+naslund

Trying To Serve The LA Area Hockey Fans

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Randy Harvey (LAT Sports Editor) of the Fabulous Forum Blog at the LA Times,

The Times has excellent hockey writers, including Helene Elliott, the 2005 Elmer Ferguson Award winner for her oustanding hockey coverage and this year’s winner of the Jim Murray Memorial Foundation sportswriter of the year award. She was among honorees along with Sugar Ray Leonard and Ashley Force at a dinner last night in Beverly Hills.

But it’s true that we’ve had to cut back on national coverage. It’s also true we will be more selective this season, as we were last season and the season before, about which Kings and Ducks road games to cover with our own reporters….

“I know the reaction often is that there aren’t a lot of hockey fans and therefore they don’t get enough respect,’’ he said. “So maybe there was some of that, that we have a sport a few of us love but that not everybody likes.’‘

We at the Times will continue to try to serve that few as best we can. But it’s not easy with the ravenous hockey crowd. As a colleague once said, “There’s not enough hockey in the Hockey News for hockey fans.’‘

more including a nice award for Kings play-by-play man Bob Miller.

The LA Times just doesn’t get it, nothing else to be said.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Los Angeles Kings, NHL Media, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“The economy is tough, and if anyone says it isn’t they’re just not being accurate”.

“We may not see the effects for a while, either. A lot of people had their spending budget in place prior to our season. We sell our seats, we sell our corporate business, and we sell our season tickets starting in July. But from July through now, the world’s been tougher on the United States. We have to really work at playing an entertaining game on the ice, having people coming to our arena and understanding that it’s an event and having fun in the building.”

-Blues President John Davidson.  More from Davidson at TSN.

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: john+davidson

Cherepanov Was Playing Hockey Illegally?

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From the Associated Press today the allegation from Col. Vladimir Karpenko, a spokesman for the commander of Russia’s Railway Troops, that Alexei Cherepanov (who, of course, recently died during a game) was in fact playing “illegally” and should have been serving his mandatory military service at the time.

The full story is here.

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexei+cherepanov, khl

Why The Non-Disclosure Of Injuries Works

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kelly Hrudey of Blogs and Columns at CBC,

I shared goalie duties with a really good guy, Chris Terreri, but shortly after opening the season, Chris broke his hand in a game in St. Louis.

A couple of games after that, I separated my right shoulder and our goalie prospects at that time weren’t ready for NHL action.

The Sharks chose not to tell anybody about my injury.

So I ended up playing 12 straight with a separated shoulder. This kind of injury made it impossible for me to raise my arm over my shoulder.

If the other teams around the league would have known of my injury, without question every shot would have been high to my stick side.


Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Canadiens Suspend Valentenko

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

The Canadiens’ young prospect Pavel Valentenko signed a deal in Russia earlier this week, and the Habs responded today by suspending the player from the team and presenting their concerns to the IIHF. 

Valentenko’s Canadian agent Roland Hedges tries to explain his client’s actions. From the Canadian Press via TSN:

Hedges said Valentenko has been supporting his family since he was 15, and took a pay cut to pursue his NHL dream when he signed with Montreal before the 2007-08 season.

After playing all of last season and the first four games of this season with Hamilton, he was given permission to return to Russia to attend to a family matter. He said the signing was not premeditated.

“His intention was to go home to see his parents and see what he could do,” said Hedges. “When he got home, his father already had the deal done (with Dynamo).

“And if you saw the size of the deal, you’d see why.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: iihf, khl, pavel+valentenko

Professor McPhee

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Tarik El-Bashir in the Washington Post,

George McPhee leaned forward in his chair, squinted his eyes and focused on the performance that was unfolding before him. Except on this Wednesday night, the performers weren’t hockey players and McPhee, the general manager of the Washington Capitals, wasn’t sitting in a suite high above the ice. Instead, he was in a classroom at Georgetown University grading the midterm projects of 44 students in his graduate-level sports management class.

The Washington Capitals GM is teaching eight classes this semester.  I think my favorite line in the article comes from one of McPhee’s students, who remarked “It’s like learning to play basketball from Michael Jordan” which, it occurs to me, might not be the best analogy… (edit: actually, I change my mind. I was thinking about that quote in the wrong way, equivocal to “...learning to play hockey from George McPhee.” Which obviously isn’t what was meant. Whoops!)

Anyway, great article—read the rest here.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: george+mcphee

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