Video: Ducks’ Steckel scores on the pop fly

National Hockey League action Wednesday night produced some odd goals (see Johan Franzen’s backhand shot from center ice that beat Miikka Kiprusoff).

And here’s another one. Anaheim Ducks forward Dave Steckel’s shot deflects off a stick, way up into the air, lands in the Columbus Blue Jackets’ crease and then bounces back over the goal line.

Columbus goalie Sergei Bobrovsky had no clue where the puck was, until it was across the goal line. Actually, Steckel, himself, didn’t really know where the puck went after he shot it.

Video: Red Wings’ Franzen scores from center ice


On a night when Calgary Flames fans were celebrating the career of Miikka Kiprusoff, the veteran 36-year-old goaltender will be cast on the highlights in part because of a goal he let in from center ice.

Detroit Red Wings forward Johan Franzen got his team to within a goal with under three minutes remaining in the third period, bouncing a backhand shot from just inside the Calgary side of center ice and by Kiprusoff. The Flames, however, hung on for the 3-2 victory and Kiprusoff made 36 saves on Wednesday.

Kiprusoff’s start tonight might be last in Calgary


Miikka Kiprusoff, 36, isn’t hiding the fact that he might retire at the end of the 2013 campaign. If this is his final season, it’s an unfortunate way to end his career.

The Calgary Flames are focused on getting younger as they close out their fourth consecutive season without a playoff berth, but this campaign has also been rough for Kiprusoff specifically. He has a 3.60 GAA and .872 save percentage in 21 starts, which puts him at the bottom of both categories among goaltenders that qualify.

Lately he has even lost the starting job to Joey MacDonald, who the Calgary Flames originally picked up on waivers.

“Mac (Joey MacDonald) has been red-hot,” Kiprusoff reasoned in a Calgary Herald report. “He’s playing so well. They don’t want to change the goalie that’s playing that well. But I’m getting my chance (tonight) and I’ll try to do my best.”

The Finnish goaltender is starting against the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday. After this match, Calgary will play in their last home game on Friday and given how the netminding duties have been allocated lately, it’s very possible that this will be Kiprusoff’s final start in the Scotiabank Saddledome.

Regardless of what happens, if he decides to hang up his skates this summer Kiprusoff will be bringing an end to a storied career.

He was a late bloomer, not really finding his way in the NHL until his breakout 2003-04 campaign. He led the Calgary Flames into the playoffs that season and, as the sixth seed, took them as far as Game 7 of the finals. That’s as close as he ever got to winning the Stanley Cup.

Even still, he’s been a workhorse and ranks 23rd in the NHL all-time list with 317 wins. He had a career-high 10 shutouts in 2005-06 en route to winning the Vezina Trophy.

“Was he perfect? No. Nobody is,” former goaltending coach David Marcoux said. “But he brought it all to his hockey club and was accountable to his teammates. You ask anybody from 2003 to today ‘Do you trust Miikka Kiprusoff?’ and the answer would be unanimous.”

Report: Kiprusoff will stay in Calgary, considering retirement


Miikka Kiprusoff will remain in Calgary and may retire at the end of the season, sources tell TSN’s Darren Dreger.

Despite a dreadful .868 save percentage, Kiprusoff had been targeted by Toronto as a potential veteran backup for James Reimer.

Kiprusoff is 36 years old and is signed through next season. However, his salary falls to just $1.5 million in the final year of his six-year, $35 million contract.

(And if you ask Mike Keenan, retirement by the end of this season was the plan all along; the final year of the contract was just tacked on to lower the cap hit. We wonder if the league might look into that if Kiprusoff does indeed call it a career.)

As for the Leafs, general manager Dave Nonis has said he’s fine going into the playoffs with Reimer and Ben Scrivens as his netminding tandem.

Still, expect to hear more chatter about Vancouver’s Roberto Luongo going to Toronto, even though Luongo’s contract is a totally different animal.

PHT Morning Skate: Where we talk about — what else — trades


PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

The Edmonton Oilers might want to just stay quiet on the trade front today. (Edmonton Sun)

The Philadelphia Flyers don’t want to mortgage their future for the sake of the 2013 campaign. (CSN Philly)

After the Dallas Stars pulled the trigger on three trades yesterday, Mike Heika weighed in on what this all means for the franchise. (Dallas Morning News)

Meanwhile, the Stars called up and sent down several players to close out their hectic day. (

Jaromir Jagr might start his tenure with the Boston Bruins on their third line. (Boston Globe)

One way or another, 36-year-old goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff’s tenure with the Calgary Flames will eventually come to an end. They like some of their up-and-coming potential replacements though. (Calgary Sun)

Although the Toronto Maple Leafs might make a move before the deadline, they’re in “a pretty good place” right now. (Toronto Sun)

A look back at the flurry of trades yesterday. Also, after all that, what can we expect today? (

Here are the highlights from Buffalo’s 4-1 victory over Pittsburgh:

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