Miikka Kiprusoff

Kiprusoff informs Finnish national team of retirement plans (Updated)


Thirty-six-year-old goaltender Mikka Kiprusoff still has one more season left on his contract with the Calgary Flames, but he might not play.

Kiprusoff told the Finnish national team that he was ready to retire, according to Urheilusanomat’s Juha Hiitelä and STT-Lehtikuva’s Mikael Hoikkala.

“If Calgary has not announced it, you guys can do that,” Kiprusoff reportedly said.

The Flames haven’t announced his retirement. In fact, if he really has made a decision, that would be news to the team, Sportsnet’s John Shannon reported.

That being said, if Kiprusoff has decided to call it a career, it wouldn’t shock them. Flames GM Jay Feaster recently confirmed that the netminder was leaning towards retirement.

Kiprusoff struggled mightily in 2013 with a 3.44 GAA and .882 save percentage in 24 games.

If this is the end of his career, he’ll be retiring with 319 wins, 2.49 GAA, and .912 save percentage in 623 career games. He was also the winner of the Vezina Trophy in 2006.

Update (12:32 p.m. ET)

Following is a statement from Flames general manager Jay Feaster:

“As we indicated when we addressed the media on June 14th, having just spoken with Miikka at that time, we realized that if pushed for an answer Miikka would have said that he was finished with his professional career. In light of our most recent meeting with him, the statement attributed to him by the Finnish National Team does not come as a surprise. However, as we have said consistently, we will continue our dialogue with Miikka.”

Kane scores OT-winner, caps Islanders’ bumpy start in Brooklyn

Patrick Kane

On paper, it’s the perfect way to kick off meaningful hockey in Brooklyn, as the New York Islanders faced the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks on Friday.

In reality, there were some highs and lows, culminating with Patrick Kane scoring a power-play overtime-winner to give Chicago a 3-2 (OT) win.

The Barclays Center crowd was going to be a big part of the story one way or another, but even by building-opening standards, the audience made some waves.

Indeed, Kane was greeted with some jeers during his first road appearance of the 2015-16 season, though he didn’t sound surprised.

(There were other controversial chants, apparently.)

Speaking of the crowd, it may not have been the greatest turnout:

ESPN goes way, way in depth on how the change of locale was received, by the way.

It wasn’t a perfect night inside the rink, either, as there weren’t exactly rave reviews about ice quality. New York Newsday’s Arthur Staple compared the ice to a “slushy” and “soup,” with an anonymous Islander (or Islanders) describing the conditions as “awful.”

Kane was pretty diplomatic about it, for what it’s worth.


So, no, it was not a perfect night for the Islanders.

They probably envisioned a teeming, perfectly mannered crowd. Management likely expected Jaroslav Halak to be in net, too.

Sometimes breaking ground is often about overcoming those early stumbles, though, and maybe the best review is to parallel the on-ice results: the Isles at least got a point out of it.

Let’s not forget that there are some cool perks that come with this situation, even if the specifics may vary.

If you want even more information/photos/etc., you’d probably do well to check out #IslesOpeningNight.

Columbus collapse: Rangers spoil Blue Jackets’ opener

1 Comment

For a little more than a minute, Brandon Saad was going to be the story of the Columbus Blue Jackets’ opener. Instead, his power-play goal merely got the ball rolling on a flabbergasting finish.

The New York Rangers scored three goals in 1:17 of game time to manage a 4-2 win.

They’ve now spoiled home openers for the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets to begin their 2015-16 season.

It might be easiest just to show you when the goals were scored, noting that the third period began with a 1-1 tie.

Brandon Saad power-play goal: 16:10 into third period (2-1 Columbus)
Oscar Lindberg: 17:24 (2-2 tie)
Kevin Hayes: 17:41 (3-2 Rangers)
Mats Zuccarello: 18:41 (4-2 Rangers)

Yikes. Zuccarello scored two of the Rangers’ goals, while a beauty by Cam Atkinson is likely long forgotten.