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Game One Thoughts: Canucks/Kings, Caps ‘n’ Habs

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Thanks to the wonders of DVR and an early night from the fiancee, I actually got to fully watch two of last nights three playoff games.  For a single TV household, too much of my weeknight TV is taken up by horrors like Dancing With The Stars, or the slightly less horrible Biggest Loser. 

I’m hoping that ups the quality of today’s expert analysis.

Canucks/Kings

ZOMG thisgamewassogreat. (see, expert stuff)

Really, it’s been a rare treat for me to get to watch the Canucks play this year, so I really soaked it in.  Alliteratively speaking, those stupid Sedins are so sick it’s scary.  There was the recent scandal revealed by Intent To Blow – follow that link for a great laugh - but aside from that, these guys played a near flawless game last night.

Doughty almost be blowed the eff up

A lot of people in the world have crazy sick hands.  But to combine those skills (and 361 degree vision …..Yep, twins have an extra degree) with size and work ethic is breathtaking.  I enjoyed watching them work their magic, easily as much as I enjoy watching Crosby or Ovechkin - just in a different way. 

When watching Sid and Ovie, you get the sense that they might make any player look silly at any moment.  Maybe two players.  With Daniel and Henrik, it’s a more reserved, make-all-six-opponents-look-stupid-at-once quality.

Then there’s Mikael Samuelsson, the under-the-radar dude that may be the best value-per-dollar in the league.  They have him for two more years after this one, at $2.5 million per, and the guy doesn’t seem to even be aware of how good he is.  Canucks fans do.

But that’s enough Canucks gushing, especially from a BC boy who never claimed to be much of a ‘nucks fan (though as far as Canadian teams go, I’ll take them first, thanks).

The Kings deserve plenty of love too.  This game could have easily gone the other way, had it not been for some fine overtime goaltending from the man everyone loves to bash, Roberto Luongo.  This guy is like Ovechkin, in that the second he underachieves, 15% of hockey fans can barely get the word “SEE!” out of their mouth fast enough.

Not many Canadians on that Canadian team, huh?

{Though Down Goes Brown put Ovy’s start in the best 140 characters yet: “Now that the Vancouver/LA game is underway, everyone but Chicago, Nashville and Ovechkin have started their playoffs.”}

The Kings moved the puck nicely on the powerplay, got solid play from their young D studs (minus some d-zone lapses), and aren’t to be taken lightly going forward.

By the way, I’m so sick of the old adage that ugly goals win overtime games.  100 pretty goals will go in over 100 overtimes, then the second an ugly one crosses the line, everyones like “yup, that’s the way it always goes.”  No.  No it’s not.

The Canucks had great pressure, lots of in-zone movement from their forwards, and simply turned the Kings around in their own end.  Great pass, great shot.  Nothin’ ugly about that.

*****

Capitals/Habs

Damn, already wrong on this prediction.

The startling thing about this game wasn’t that the Habs got it done in overtime, it was that they didn’t win in regulation.  I mean, honestly.

The second half of the second period looked like the worlds longest powerplay for Montreal.  My line that “if you have the puck on offense all the time, you never have to play defense” is no less true, but it requires the having of the puck.  When your offense isn’t present, and you rely on your offense to be your defense…. damn.  Ug.  Ly.  Stuff.

Cammalleri’s top corner shot on the first goal was ridiculous.  It would go in on any of the leagues 30 goalies, even if they had time to set to it.  Good lord was that rifled.  And actually, Plecanec’s OT winner was more than decent too – the top guys probably flag it down, but the point is, you can’t fault Theodore for the loss.  The defenseman’s gap on that play was so poor it was on welfare.  He was damn near face-off dot deep while Plecanec crossed the blueline.

Didn't see this Ovy last night. You will.

You know who you can fault on Montreal’s game tying goal though?  The ever-talented, oft-Bourne-defended Mike Green.  Damnit, son, D up.

Though I still think the Caps win the next four, last nights game didn’t feel like Montreal escaped with a road win.  They beat the Caps, straight up.

And as for Ovy’s no-show?  Settle down, world.  He’ll be juuuust fine.

*****

Didn’t catch Boston vs. Buffalo, but saw it was, as predicted, a 2-1 Buffalo win.  I got one right!

Comments

10 Responses to “Game One Thoughts: Canucks/Kings, Caps ‘n’ Habs”
  1. mikeB says:

    That entire game winning sequence for the Canucks was simply amazing. Those two are good.

    And having Plekanec score the goal was just rubbing salt in the wound after he called out the Caps goalies and Theodore called him Thomas “Jagr” Plekanec with just a bit of sarcasm.

  2. mikeB says:

    Also I assume you don’t get CBC, but check this out if you are up for some Sens trivia/bashing.

    http://www.silversevensens.com/2010/4/13/1418382/the-curse-of-ottawa-senators-draft

  3. The Franchise says:

    Wow, what a Sens curse.

    Can’t wait for game 2 tonight between Sens-Pens. The best part of it is that Bob Cole sounds like he dies a little bit more with each Ottawa goal.

  4. Char says:

    I can’t stand Les Habs, and I LOATHE Plekanec, but I have to admit I snickered. The Caps aren’t going to win by just tossing their sticks out there. ;-)

    Oh, and Patrick Kaleta is a diving cheap-shot artist. But we already knew that.

  5. crushasaurus says:

    Nearly kicked my TV off the stand last night – this is why I said Capitals in 7. They’re really, really unpredictable when the pressure is on and the nerves are present. Went to bed at 3am grumbling and woke everyone up.

    Also Justin, if you do get the CBC feed there was a Coach’s Corner montage comparing Crosby’s “keep-ball” display against the Islanders with Bobby Orr’s spinoramas and stick skills. You should have seen Cherry’s face when the cameras went back to him.

  6. neil says:

    On paper, my Canuck-loving buddies and I are taking LA very seriously. A friend of mine insists their D is underrated, and although my first impression was that they are not that deep, I have proven myself wrong by actually looking at their roster. I see it as a pretty even matchup in a lot of ways.
    That being said, I don’t think the Kings looked very good last night. They were outshot 17-6 in the first, came back and edged out Van 13-9 in the 2nd, then got pelted 13-2 in the third. Angus at Dobber pointed out that Jones and Johnson were pretty brutal in their own end, which apparently isn’t anything new for Kings fans. The first period was a shooting gallery, LA completely relied on several huge saves from Quick to keep them from going down 2-3 goals in the first.
    It’s just the first game and I’m sure LA is going to change their gameplan and have a better game 2. Still, as far as 3-2 OT wins go (where your goalie steals the game with a goal-line snag just seconds before your team ices it), that one made me happy that we drew the Kings in the first round.
    Couple questionable plays in the defensive end from Mike Green last night…. just sayin…
    I thought the Bruins-Buffalo series was gonna be boring, now it looks like it’s going to be an epic battle… LOVE IT!!!
    the playoffs f-cking rule, I LOVE this stuff!!

  7. Beaton says:

    Here is the coach’s corner’s clip:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-YMENFd1mvU

    Not much you can do on defence against that (although I thought MacDonald played him pretty well)

  8. Ben says:

    So, just the Blackhawks and Ovechkin who haven’t started the playoffs yet then. Sigh…

  9. RichB says:

    “so poor its on welfare” nice

    There is nothing less horrible then the biggest loser. The biggest losers are what the viewers of that show are called.

  10. Fish says:

    dancing with the stars, move like michael Jackson, another show where people go round each others house and get to eat what the host cooks, and a show in which some poor sods van win their own restaurant. all very inter”esting I’m sure, if you like that sorta voyeur thing…

    Honestly, in the last 5 years i’ve spent about 50 hrs in front of the tv, if I’m lucky i can watch half a game every couple of weeks.

    I just went and bought a (smaller but none the less) second tv. :)

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