Kukla's Korner

Sabres Surprising Just About Everyone

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News,

Place your left hand on the Bible and raise your right hand before answering this question, understanding you could face charges of perjury: Did you think before the season began that the Buffalo Sabres would be sitting in second place in the Eastern Conference today, Jan. 10, 2010?

Well, um, not, gee, uh ...

Good heavens, no.

For what it’s worth, I picked them to finish eighth in the conference with the idea they were capable of finishing anywhere between sixth and 10th. Nobody of sound hockey mind would have predicted the Sabres charging to the top of the division and challenging for the NHL’s best record.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Wings Looking For Some Signing Flexibility

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

Holland met with Lidstrom during this road trip and Lidstrom told him he won’t make a decision on whether he’ll continue playing or retire until after the season.

Hudler called Holland a few days ago to wish him a happy New Year. He didn’t give any indication of whether he wants to return to Detroit next season, but he has an out clause in the two-year, $10 million deal he signed with Russia’s Moscow Dynamo in the summer.

“He told me he’s not sure what he’s doing next year,’’ Holland said.

If Hudler returns, he would honor the two-year deal he was awarded through arbitration last summer, which has a cap hit of $2.875 million.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Is The Monster A #1 Goalie?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,

There’s no question Gustavsson is agile and quick and aggressive. But a No. 1 goalie? That’s unclear, and there’s just no way the Leafs can go into next season just wishing they have quality netminding.

They hoped Vesa Toskala would bounce back strongly from off-season surgery, and Burke was as wrong on that as John Ferguson was on banking that Andrew Raycroft could replace Ed Belfour.

They can’t just hope Gustavsson can do it next fall. They have to know. That means the final 36 games have to include at least 25 Gustavsson starts, assuming he’s healthy enough, and then a cold, realistic assessment has to be done over whether he’s ready.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jonas+gustavsson

Bertuzzi Gets No Slack

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Chris McCosky of the Detroit News,

It doesn’t matter that he plays a hard, clean game, more than willing to stick up for himself and teammates without going out of his way to instigate trouble. He’s not a Lady Byng candidate by any stretch, but he’s far from a goon.

Yet, in the eyes and minds of some people in the game, it’s still 2004 and he’s still the thug that blindsided Moore. And by some people in the game, I am referring to the referees.

Bertuzzi is officiated differently, in my judgment, than other players. He is watched more closely, like he’s the neighborhood bully or something. If somebody falls near him, he’s the first guy the referees see.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: todd+bertuzzi

Not At The Table Carlos…It’s A Live Blog

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

I’m watching The Hangover, and I will be right up until the puck drops.  At 2230? My one-man wolfpack will grow by 18.  Awesome.

As of 2143 both Phoenix and Bubba were down three goals after two and the Dive were in a skills competition. 

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

“We’re The Best In The World”

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

In case you missed Coach’s Corner tonight on HNIC, here it is.

Most of the conversation centered around Phil Kessel & the WJC and why Canada is still #1 in Don’s mind.

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: don+cherry

Report- Curtis Joseph Will Officially Retire On Tuesday

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Pierre LeBrun of ESPN, Curtis Joseph, fourth all-time in wins by a goaltender, will announce his retirement at a news conference Tuesday at the Air Canada Center in Toronto, a source told ESPN.com on Saturday.

The 42-year-old Joseph last played last season with the Toronto Maple Leafs, backing up Vesa Toskala.

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: curtis+joseph

Sunday Rumors On Saturday Night

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun (Sunday edition),

• Source say the Flyers are looking for help in the net because they’re not convinced that G Ray Emery is the answer. Canadiens GM Bob Gainey asked for C Jeff Carter in return for G Jaroslav Halak before the Christmas break, but Gainey’s demands are expected to change so a deal can get done

• There has been talk the Rangers are going to placed D Wade Redden on waivers and then send him to the their AHL affiliate in Hartford. There is nothing to stop the Rangers from doing that because Redden has a limited no-trade clause, but he doesn’t have a restrictive no-movement clause.

many more league wide rumors…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

New Selke Leader

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

In December, I picked Travis Zajac of the New Jersey Devils as the Selke Trophy for best defensive forward.  Zajac remains a top Selke candidate, but with Rob Niedermayer and Jay Pandolfo returned from injury, Zajac’s defensive role on the Devils is declining.  Hence, I am picking a new Selke leader.  My selection is Mike Fisher of the Ottawa Senators.

Fisher is having a very good season and received some consideration for a spot on the Canadian Olympic team.  He currently leads the Sens in points with 32.  He is doing this while playing one of the toughest defensive roles in the league for the Sens.  Fisher is an outstanding defensive centre who regularly shuts down the opposition and he is becoming an offensive threat in that situation.  He has been the best forward in the league who is primarily used in a defensive role so far this season.

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

The Latest Kovalchuk Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Darren Dreger of TSN,

Ilya Kovalchuk’s agent, Jay Grossman is in Atlanta this weekend and the expectation is ongoing negotiations with the Thrashers will resume early next week.

While both sides say they remain committed to getting a deal done, sources say Thrashers general manager, Don Waddell has started to feel out teams who may have interest in a trade, if an agreement in Atlanta can’t be reached.

When asked, via text message if Atlanta has alerted teams of its intent to trade Kovalchuk, Waddell replied, “not yet.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ilya+kovalchuk

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