Kukla's Korner

Friday Hockey Topics

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,

- ...do you think Minnesota and Dallas were both hoping for a little more production from off-season signings Thomas Vanek and Ales Hemsky? Vanek has one goal (11 points) in 21 games for the Wild, while Hemsky is still goal-less, with just five helpers in 21 games. Both are on three-year deals, with Vanek making $6.5 million per, Hemsky $4 million. And they have just one goal between them in 42 combined games.

- It’s a great story being penned in Nashville, where the Predators have jazzed up their play, and sit atop the Central. Plus, they’ve got Calder Trophy favourite Filip Forsberg who came over in that trade for Martin Erat, a deal that GM David Poile didn’t even want to make.

“Martin asked to be traded. He didn’t believe in us anymore,” Poile told the Edmonton Journal’s Jim Matheson. “I had several conversations to try and talk him down. If Martin never came to me, we wouldn’t have traded him at all.”

more topics...

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Let’s Make Some Trades Philadelphia

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Randy Miller of NJ.com,

Deals that Hextall surely would love to make but can't include trading unproductive/expensive forwards Vinny Lecavalier (2 goals in 14 games, $4.5 million cap hit through 2017-18) and R.J. Umberger (1 goal in 21 games, $4.6 million cap hit through 2016-17). No team is taking on one of those contracts.

But here are a few thinking-outside-the-box possibilities for Hextall to consider:




more on each trade scenario...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Tyler Seguin On A Pace To Score 63 Goals

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News,

Seguin leads the NHL with 17 goals in 22 games. If he continues that pace and stays healthy for all 82 games, he would score 63 goals. The Stars’ franchise record is 55, shared by Brian Bellows and Dino Ciccarelli. The last time a Star hit 50 was Mike Modano in 1993-94.

“That’s an incredible pace when you look at where the league is going,” center Jason Spezza said. “It’s impressive to get 40 goals in a season now. To get 50, you win scoring titles with 50.”

It’s heady stuff when you think about it. Seguin last season tallied 37 goals among 84 points in 80 games played. He was moving back to center after three years at right wing in Boston, and there were some growing pains. This season, he is moving effortlessly between right wing and center, and finding ways to get open no matter where he is on the ice.

“He’s a real challenge to defend,” said new Stars defenseman Jason Demers, who faced Seguin while playing for San Jose. “He’s got great speed, and he can really find the open ice. And he has that shot.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: tyler+seguin

Morning Line- Ron Hextall

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

"It's too early to get too tied up in the standings, but it's not too early to say, 'Where are we at as a group?' and we're under .500. That's not going to cut it. We need to be better.

"We're a better team than our record shows, and I think the biggest issue we've had is consistency. You're never going to be totally consistent. We all get that part. But our consistency, our highs and lows, have been just too extreme, and, within a game, within a period, there's just been too many down parts, whether it's 10 minutes, 8 minutes, 6 minutes. The way the game is now, as close as it is, you can't afford it. You really can't."

-Ron Hextall, GM of the Philadelphia Flyers.  More on the Flyers from Jake Kaplan of the Philadelphia Daily News.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ron+hextall

Blue Jackets Lacking An Identity

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,

Tonight, the Jackets play the Vancouver Canucks at Nationwide Arena. The Canucks (15-6-1) have the second-best record in the Western Conference. They have found something. The Jackets (6-13-2) have the second-worst record in the league. They have lost something.

“When you’ve done something, it becomes an expectation and a standard, and we haven’t been up to that standard,” coach Todd Richards said after practice yesterday. “We have to expect that standard every night.”...

What the Jackets are missing, though, is who they are.

“We haven’t been able to find our identity,” Foligno said. “It comes from the players. Not management, not coaches. It comes from the players, and it has to change.”

The Jackets are fast and physical, and they have an aggressive forecheck. At least that was their identity last season, and the half-season before that.

“I don’t know if camouflaged is the right word,” Richards said. “It’s there, but sometimes we can’t find it.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Black Friday Shopping From Home

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Want to do some Black Friday shopping but avoid all the mayhem?

Amazon.com has sale which ends tonight, so take advantage of those deals.



It's also a great way to help out KK since I receive a small commission for every sale used through the link.

Thanks and happy shopping.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: KK Website Business, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Friday Morning Hockey Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

- Any team talking to the St. Louis Blues in a trade has to be asking about Vladimir Sobotka, who didn’t like their offer this summer and hiked off to the KHL. He’s a perfect third-line centre on a good, bad or indifferent team. He could be the toughest pound-for-pound player in the entire league. Could the Oilers use him? Is the grass green?

- With Mike Fisher (Achilles surgery) back, the Predators have a boatload of centres (Mike Ribeiro, Colin Wilson, Calle Jarnkrok, Paul Gaustad, Matt Cullen, Derek Roy, Olli Jokinen), with many shifting to the wing. Fisher was between Roy and Jokinen for the Oilers game Thursday. Most likely to move is Jokinen. He has only one point in 21 games.

- Vincent Lecavalier and fellow forward R.J. Umberger played 11 and 10 minutes respectively for the Flyers in the 5-2 loss to Detroit Wednesday. Expensive dead-men skating, unfortunately. Plugger Zac Rinaldo played as many minutes as the once-starry Lecavalier, which is sad. He’s run out of gas at 34.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Drew Miller chooses a very smart way to give to charity on a statistical basis

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Drew Miller's the player whose gloves and sticks you're most likely to find at Hockeytown Authentics.

Because he blocks so many shots (to the point that he's got plastic "shot-blocker" inserts in his gloves after breaking his hand two springs ago) and kills so many penalties, you'd think that he goes through a lot of sticks, but the sticks you'll find at HTA, whether it's at the Joe or in Troy, are actually in pretty good condition, so he must be one of those players who believes in a stick for each period (a la Nicklas Lidstrom).

That's a little amusing given that Miller's inherited Luke Glendening's status as having Depleted Uranium Hands this season, but DetroitRedWings.com's Craig Peterson reports that as a result, Miller's chosen to give significant funds to charity by focusing on "scoring" something other than goals:

The importance of food bringing families together is not lost on Red Wings forward Drew Miller, whose efforts during this season will help make a donation to the Salvation Army's Bed and Bread Truck program. Miller wants to have a positive impact on the Detroit community with his efforts on and off the ice, which is why he plans to donate $75 (U.S.) for every blocked shot he records this season.

“The food bank is something that I thought would be (a good cause),” he said. “A lot of people are not eating out there, especially in Detroit. The city is making a comeback but there’s still people out there that need some help and I think that’s something myself and my wife want to be a part of.”

When asked about the unique statistic he chose to contribute his efforts with, Miller said he wanted to make a worthwhile donation that would have an affect on people.

“That’s probably the one stat I have the most in. You want to pick a stat that is prominent for myself and I don’t really have a lot of goals and assists in the season …you want to donate and help out.”

Peterson continues, explaining that even one blocked shot delivers a ton of charitable bang for Miller's buck...

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

The overnight: Red Wings-Devils set-up, on Weiss, football, infected wounds and Lidstrom on Alfie

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

It would behoove the Red Wings to take advantage of any possibility that the New Jersey Devils take as much note of the first day of Martin Brodeur's tenure as a St. Louis Blues try-out as their media corps are at present.

On Thursday, the Wings tried to maximize their American Thanksgiving home time before taking a 6 PM flight to Newark, where tonight, the 12-5-and-5 Wings hope to earn their 3rd straight win for the 1st time this season, building upon Wednesday night's 4-2 win over Philly as they take on the 9-10-and-3 Devils (7:30 PM EST on FSD/MSG Plus/97.1 FM).

The Devils most recently dropped a 2-0 decision to Vancouver on Tuesday, wrapping up a 5-game West Coast swing in which they went 1-3-and-1, and the Devils are 3-7-and-1 in their past 11 games, so there's quite a bit of concern about New Jersey's fortunes, as the Bergen Record's Tom Gulitti noted:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Prospect and alumni news: Kadeikin breaks through with SKA; on McCrimmon, Howe, Chelios and Shanahan

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The prospect catch-up post of doom had to wait for sleep and turkey on Thursday, and I apologize for that, but it's coming sooner than later. In the interim, two of the three Red Wings prospects who played on Thursday had big games, the Wings' AHL affiliate was queried regarding an article about the AHL's 3-on-3 OT tweak, and three alumni stories of note popped up.

First, in game action: In Russia, Alexander Kadeikin, who's been bouncing in and out of SKA St. Petersburg's lineup, scored the 3-1 and 6-1 goals in SKA's 6-1 win over Metallurg Novokuznetsk. Kadeikin/Kadeykin (depending upon how you transliterate Cyrillic phonetic letters) scored his 2nd and 3rd goals, took 4 shots, and won 8 of 9 faceoffs in 11:51 of ice time.

If you want to watch 6-and-a-half minutes of Russian highlights, the KHL's YouTube channel provides for your needs:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

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