Kukla's Korner

THE BLACKHAWKS’ ‘CAP CRISIS’: FACT OR FICTION?

Blog: KK Hockey By David Morris

Hockey writers looking to fill their columns and generate eyeballs, find few easier ways these days, than to zero in on the so-called “Cap Crisis”. Per the pundits, the sky is about to fall in on teams as their salaries smash up against a steel ceiling, their rosters set to implode as the time bomb ticks.

The Chicago Blackhawks are a favorite target for sensation-seeking scribes. The scenarios they paint have rivals licking their chops as Hawks’ GM Stan Bowman pounds his calculator furiously, trying in vain to find ways to keep his treasured stars, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Duncan Keith secure within the Hawkey Flock.

Prognosticators conjure up a disaster in the making, the high-flying Hawks suddenly crashing back to Earth. Discussion boards are fired up, and the fur flies as they fulminate.

But is this fact, or fiction formulated by hockey hacks and fuelled by frantic fans?

Taking a closer look at the landscape, there is as usual, a story behind ‘the story’…

Continue Reading »

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

NHL`s Opportunistic Fight With The NHLPA

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

The NHLPA is in a shambles.  The NHL is using this weakness to launch an attack on the NHLPA, as the NHLPA is not in a position to defend itself well.  This summer, Dany Heatley, then an Ottawa Senator, demanded a trade.  Heatley then declined to be traded to the Edmonton Oilers, as he had a no movement clause in his contract.  This allowed him to deny any trades (despite the fact he requested one).  Ottawa spent most of the summer dealing with the Heatley drama until they finally traded him to the San Jose Sharks.  Heatley and a fifth round pick were traded to San Jose in exchange for Milan Michalek, Jonathan Cheechoo and a second round pick.  So far, this trade has favored San Jose as Heatley has 17 points by himself and Michalek and Cheechoo have combined for ten points in Ottawa.

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Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

What Happened To The Instigator Penalty?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Darren Dreger of TSN,

Before the start of the regular season, the NHL said the instigator penalty would be called more vigilantly this season than in the recent past. So far, that hasn’t been the case.

Heading in to Tuesday’s games, an instigator penalty had been called in 8 of 117 fights. That’s one for every 14 fights or 6.8%. Although slightly higher than last season’s 5.9% rate, the calling of instigator penalties has declined significantly from the first two post-lockout seasons.

NHL officials were sent memos at the beginning of the season, reinforcing the importance of identifying instigators when the occasion calls for it. One of the most blatant circumstances is fights following clean hits. NHL Director of Officiating Terry Gregson says, “if a player seeks to hand out his own form of justice and his actions meet the criteria, it must be called.”

continued

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

Time To Move Vinny?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stan Fischler at the HockeyJournal,

* Vin Lecavalier’s so-so season so far has Tampa Bay pundits wondering whether the Lightning brass has waited too long before unloading the captain.

And, if not, is this the time to do so before it’s too late? Compared to buddy, St. Louis, Lecavalier’s game has been uninspiring.

Could be that Vin needs the tough love of Rangers coach John Tortorella (Melrose, Mass.) more than he thinks.

* Which youngster is better that John Tavares on the Islanders? It just happens to be his buddy, Matt Moulson.

Unlike Tavares, Moulson is a college graduate (Cornell), and through the weekend totaled six goals and four assists for 10 points. Discarded by the Kings after two cups of coffee, Moulson was signed as a free agent by GM Garth Snow (Wrentham, Mass.) last summer.

more hockey observations…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Flames & Their H1N1 Flu Shots

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Many of you know I listen to Canadian radio stations via the web, and this story is the ‘talk’ today…

from Bill Kaufmann of the Calgary Sun,

The Calgary Flames did nothing underhanded to procure H1N1 vaccinations in the past week ahead of thousands of high-risk Albertans, club president Ken King said yesterday.

But despite that claim from the team, the province has launched an investigation into what officials say shouldn’t have happened.

While King acknowledged a team doctor and the physician’s nurse wife might have been a “point of contact” in seeking the vaccine which is in short supply in the province, King said nothing was done outside Alberta Health Services (AHS) auspices.

“I’m happy to confirm we would not have taken an illicit process,” said King.

continued

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

Offensive?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Julia Keller of the Chicago Tribune,

We think we’re enlightened. We think we’re evolved. We think we’re past all that nasty old stuff from the bad old days. We think we’re “post-racial,” to use the curious term that popped up in the wake of President Barack Obama’s election.

Then a couple of fun-loving but culturally tone-deaf Blackhawks decided to dress up for Halloween as former Bulls Dennis Rodman and Scottie Pippen—complete with blackface.

more on this topic…

You can view the picture of Adam Burish dressed as Rodman and Patrick Kane as Pippen at ChicagoNow.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: adam+burish, patrick+kane

Bruins Need Scoring

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Craig Custance of the Sporting News,

They’re playing well enough to win, but they’re not winning. They’re creating enough opportunities to score, but they’re not scoring.

The Bruins are showing signs of emerging from an uninspiring start, just not enough to consistently win games. And the missed points are starting to pile up.

“If we keep getting content with that we’re not going to be very successful,” a frustrated Claude Julien said after Tuesday’s loss. “Somehow you’re going to have to make it happen if you’re going to turn this thing around.”

Nobody in Boston wants to hear this, but these Bruins sure could use Kessel. Somebody in the Bruins dressing room mentioned Kessel’s stats from the Toronto game and it was met with an ugly look from one of the Boston players. The look was clear. Kessel is gone; nobody here wants to know how he’s helping another team.

Julien said as much on Monday, even before his team turned in another zero.

read on

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

Hit Of The Night- Ohlund On Kessel

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mattias+ohlund, phil+kessel

Now Playing Goal, Sidney Crosby

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Penguins defeated the Ducks last night 4-3.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sidney+crosby

Something Has Clicked With The Islanders

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Martin of the NY Post,

Injuries limited Andy Sutton to just 23 games last season, and even though this year is only 14 games old, the defenseman already sees a difference in this group of Islanders.

“Something happened partway through this season,” Sutton said after practice yesterday in Syosset. “We figured out our identity, and it’s showing in the way we’re playing.”

And the Isles are getting results, bringing a four-game winning streak into Buffalo tonight.

“We’re making simple, hard, effective plays and being tenacious,” Sutton said. “We’ve been pretty disciplined. I think is a young team that’s getting smarter.”

It’s also a team that might start getting recognition soon.

continued

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

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