Kukla's Korner

LeBrun Observations

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

We’ve missed so much in the two weeks we’ve been away.

• The NHL exposed Nicklas Lidstrom for the rotten human being that he is and forced him to miss a game. What a joke. We weren’t impressed with the league on that one. We understand all the factors at play and the need to treat all NHL players equally; but, my gosh, this is Nick Lidstrom we’re talking about.

• ...It was during one of those diaper changes that we mulled over the significance of Henrik Zetterberg’s 12-year, $73-million contract extension with the Detroit Red Wings. GM Ken Holland yet again struck gold. Who could have possibly believed Holland would get Zetterberg for a $6.08-million yearly cap number? His market value is easily worth $8 million.

It’s the latest in a number of long-term NHL deals that tack on low salaries at the end of the contract to bring down the average salary…

As you might have guessed, the NHL head office is unimpressed by this tactic. And while it’s a guarantee the league will address this come the next CBA, sources have told ESPN.com the NHL is toying with the idea of doing something about it even sooner than that.

more

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Jack Edwards Doesn’t Think Much Of Alex Henry

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+henry, shawn+thornton

Rangers Need Some Color

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

And so here are the Rangers 51 games into the regular season that’s been far more successful than we ever envisioned, that’s for sure. But it all somehow seems so empty, doesn’t it?

Where is the color?

Where is the edge to their game?

Where is the player who can be expected to step up his game in the tournament?

Where is the player with the capability of inspiring his teammates?

Where is the player an opponent is going to have to worry about stopping in a best-of-seven?

read on

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Canadiens Need More From Kovalev

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from CBC Sports,

Carbonneau said the Russian has to step up his game if Montreal has any hope of catching Boston….

“Alex is a professional. He’s not a rookie,” Carbonneau said. “Right now, he’s struggling, but we need him [if we’re going to] go far.”

It’s been suggested in the Montreal media that Kovalev’s play tapers off when captain Saku Koivu is in the lineup. Koivu returned to action for the Habs on Jan. 21 after missing 17 games with an ankle injury, and Kovalev has struggled since then.

“I hope that’s not the truth or we’re in trouble, because I’m not taking the C off Saku — that’s the bottom line,” Carbonneau said. “If anyone needs a letter to perform on the ice, I have trouble with that.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexei+kovalev

Clutterbuck Says No To Buttercup

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from John Shipley of the Pioneer Press,

The CBC analyst and former coach also referenced an earlier fight with Phoenix’s Keith Yandle, which also drew the ire of Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky. In that fight, Clutterbuck unsnapped his helmet as if to take it off, but when Yandle made no similar move, it stayed on.

So Cherry called Clutterbuck “Buttercup.”

“I just disagree,” Clutterbuck, 21, said. “If you look at the incidents, the first time I asked to take my helmet off and said, ‘No, I’m not going to be the only guy in a fight to take my helmet off.’

“The second time against White, he jumped me from behind, so what do you want? What do you want from me, really — realistically?”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: cal+clutterbuck

Too Many Penalties

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ed Moran of the Philadelphia Daily News,

,,,Granted, the Flyers-Blues game was over the top, but in the 12 games played Saturday night, there were a total of 139 penalties called.

Does anyone but me think that this is out of hand or believe that referees today are trying to be a bigger part of the game than they should be? I’ve been on this rant before, especially after the lockout when the obstruction rules went into play. It was crazy in the first few months and then seemed to settle down.

Now it seems crazy again, and some of these calls - sorry, make that most - are really nitpicking, borderline BS….

This game is supposed to be decided by five-on-five play. Special teams are a huge part of it, but they should not be the determining factor in every single one. The league has to start looking at this again and find a way to rein it back in.

read on

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

Enough Mr, Melnyk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from The Universal Cynic,

TUC is still trying to figure out what Mr. Eugene’s deal is. One day he’s venting and applying completely inappropriate analogies to the Senators’ woes; the next he’s on the radio acting so sickeningly sweet and positive you’d think he was freelancing for Disney…or a chiropractor.

Look, I get that the guy has to pull for the team—after all, he’s the one who’s ponying up for them. But no one’s forcing him to open his mouth right now, and therein lies the rub. These days, Ottawa fans don’t want to hear that this team has a legitimate shot at a playoff berth, a lengthy post-season run, or God forbid, a Stanley Cup victory.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Devils Are Hot

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

The hottest team in the NHL right now is the New Jersey Devils.  They have won their last eight games and are safely in first place in the Atlantic Division (they have a five point lead over the New York Rangers.  This run is surprising because they have done it with Martin Brodeur, their superstar goalie injured.  How have they done it?

They have had strong goaltending from Scott Clemmensen.  He has done a surprisingly good job filling in for Brodeur.  It will be interesting too see what becomes of him when Brodeur returns.  Will he continue to play or will he become a seldom used backup?

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

Speed It Up Toronto

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damian Cristodero of the St. Petersburg Times,

Two reviews in Friday’s 6-1 loss to the Flyers, both taking apparent goals away from Tampa Bay, were several minutes long and contributed to a game that took almost three hours.

“It can be detrimental to the product when the game takes so long,” Lawton said, adding he would like to see reviews completed in 90 seconds.

“You just don’t want to see it open-ended. If it takes four or five minutes, it is not conclusive.”

Lawton was clear he was not complaining about either of Friday’s decisions and said the league’s operations staff “are the most honorable people I’ve ever met.”

more on the Bolts…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brian+lawton

Costly Loss For The Canadiens

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP via TSN,

Montreal also lost its goal-scoring leader, centre Robert Lang, likely for a long time as he had a tendon in his left heel sliced by a skate after a harmless looking hit into the boards on Stephane Yelle 8:33 into the third period.

And then winger Guillaume Latendresse left at 17:28 with what appeared to be a shoulder injury after he slid hard into the boards while checking Chuck Kobasew.

more on the Bruins 3-1 over Montreal today.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: guillaume+latendresse, robert+lang

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