Kukla's Korner

Tucker Believes Leafs Need To Find Good Chemistry

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Barrie Advance,

While admitting Raycroft did have some bad moments, Tucker believes Raycroft may have been a little overworked, and needs to get a solid backup – someone who has the confidence of his teammates and who can fill in without the quality of the team’s performance suffering.
“I think obviously you’ve got to find somebody that can jump in and win us some hockey games when Andrew’s not in the lineup. When he’s in there, we need him to be great. Every team needs good goaltending. We had it for the most part last year, but there’s games where Andrew could be better, as well as a lot of the rest of us who could have been better,” said Tucker.
“I don’t think you can ever create good chemistry on a team if you’re blowing it up constantly. And I think that our team needs that sort of chemistry to be a good hockey team, especially in the City of Toronto,” he asserted. “We’ve got a good group of guys, and if we can augment that with some good young guys and some free agents, I think we’re fine.”

more

Filed in: Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Do We Ever Get A Break

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Many of you know the long hours I put in at KK, but this is not a complaint.  I love what I am doing but thought I would be able to get a little break.
Not… see my NHL blog today.

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Retirement Talk From Niedermayer

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP via TSN,

‘‘Scott has indicated that he’s thinking about retirement,’’ Ducks GM Brian Burke told The Canadian Press on Tuesday.
The Conn Smythe Trophy winner as playoff MVP informed Burke of the possibility during the players’ exit interviews a few days after Anaheim won its championship.
Niedermayer confirmed the rumours of his possible retirement in an ESPN.com story Monday and said he wasn’t leaning either way.

‘‘I think every player, as they get older, begins to think about how much longer they’re going to play,’’ Niedermayer told the website. ‘‘I know I think about it.’‘

more... this should not come as any shock to regular KK readers, this was discussed on June 8th…

added 4:22pm, from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

If the Ducks lose Niedermayer and Teemu Selanne, who is also considering retirement, and if goaltender J.S. Giguere departs as an unrestricted free agent, then they could be just a shadow of themselves when the season resumes again in October….
Once upon a time, it was only the losers that paid this sort of heavy price. Now, even the winners and the teams that come close can’t dwell too long on their successes. Next year is just around the corner and depending upon what Niedermayer and Selanne decide to do about their futures, things could be anything but ducky for the defending Stanley Cup champions when September comes.

read on

Filed in: Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Hockey Ideas with Potential?

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

At Sportsnet, Alan Adams decides “it’s time for something whacky to happen” in hockey.

The NHL desperately needs something to break the ice, to lighten things up after a week in which two coaches (Calgary’s Jim Playfair and Dave Lewis in Boston) were relieved of their duties and the classy John Muckler was forced to walk the plank in Ottawa after the GM took the Senators to their first so-called modern day appearance in the Stanley Cup Final.
Here’s a list of things that could and maybe should happen before the 2008-09 season opens:

One suggestion…

5. Nashville signs Hayley Wickenheiser: After dumping players to stop the financial bleeding, the Nashville Predators sign Hayley Wickenheiser to a one-way contract in an effort to put fannies in the seats in the home of country music before the team moves to Hamilton. The plan works and attendance soars to 3,500 a game.

more…

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Going In Opposite Directions

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Burnside at ESPN,

One team, the Flyers: boldly fixed on the future, determined by the dint of strong ownership and a big bag of cash to reclaim its long-standing place among the NHL elite.
The other, the Predators: adrift in a sea of uncertainty, needing desperately to appeal to fans in Nashville, but instead driving them away because of an ownership vacuum, a vacuum that saw the team trade away the signing rights to top free agents Kimmo Timonen, the team’s best player and captain, and emerging two-way forward Scott Hartnell to the Flyers.
That’ll have them busting down the doors at the Nashville Arena.

more

Filed in: Nashville Predators, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Smyth Could Cash In

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Pagnotta at NBC Sports,

Smyth, who will become an unrestricted free agent in less than two weeks, has averaged 30.5 goals and 63.5 points per season over the last four years, reached the 70-point plateau, and won Olympic gold.
If Hartnell’s worth $4.2 million, you can be sure the Smyth camp will be asking for more than $6 million on the open market.
Smyth, 31, had spent all 11 of his NHL seasons with the Edmonton Oilers before being traded to the New York Islanders on February 27. Just prior to the move, Smyth turned down a five-year, $27 million contract from the Oilers, which prompted the team into dealing him.
Had he accepted the offer, Smyth would have made $5.4 million, per season.

read on

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Charlie Jacobs Expects Winning Season

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Boston Bruins.com,

Jacobs, like Chiarelli and Bruins fans in general, want the club to be harder to play against.
“We are not going to take anything but a winning season,” said the Executive VP. “We are not going to accept anything else.
“We need a pair of gentlemen who will take us to the Promised Land.”
Asked, as an executive, what kind of team he envisions, Charlie was quick to answer “a winning team” but beyond that reiterated that he, like all fans of the Black & Gold, expected that Bruins tradition be upheld.
“We…should be grittier,” said Jacobs. “We’ve heard that word a lot today (in terms of) being tougher to play against.
“The Bruins, last year, were a bit of an easy team to play against. Opposing teams would come in here and say ‘This’ll be an easy night.’

more

Filed in: Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Joe Sakic: The Hair

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

These action figures kill me (Crosby, Ovechkin)—and I mean that in a good way; they’re cartoony. Everyone keeps telling me they love them.

But I’m not so sure about poor Joe Sakic.  Why isn’t he wearing a helmet like the others?  Does the toy company really believe that The Hair can withstand scrutiny better than with the Crosby and Ovechkin figures?

image

Sakic’s action figure was just released today, incidentally, and they’re a Limited Edition - just 1,500 home jerseys, 500 road. To order, you can go here and click on Joe.  If anyone buys one, maybe put a helmet on him…

Filed in: Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A New TV Show

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via ESPN Page 2,

It’s Occasionally Sunny In Philadelphia
This spin-off of FX’s quirky hit show follows a down-on-its-luck hockey team as it tries to rebound from having the worst record in the NHL. The two main characters, Kimmo and Scott, learn life lessons the hard way—getting booed every night in the City of Brotherly Love while trying to earn their huge salaries. Episodes blacked out in most markets.

Filed in: Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Habs Unlikely To Sign Souray

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette,

Speaking of Souray, the Canadiens chances of re-signing him went from possible to unlikely after the Philadelphia Flyers secured the rights to Nashville defenceman Kimmo Timonen and signed him to a six-year deal worth an average of $6.3 million U.S. a season.
Souray’s history of injuries might discourage a team from offering him a six-year contract, but he should command the same kind of money as Timonen. Souray is a year younger, has a definite edge in size and is more of a force on the power play.

more hockey talk…

Filed in: NHL Talk, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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