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One-Touch Passes – June 30th Edition



Judging by the rare lack of commenting yesterday (Over 1,000 readers, under 10 comments), I’m starting to think FJM’ing Lambert’s Links (“What We Learned”) might be a little lengthy for most people (pushing 4,000 words vs. the usual 800-1,000).  But maybe not, maybe it just wasn’t comment worthy.  So, I’m taking the reader’s pulse today.  Please vote on if I should keeping running those posts via this link, because THE STUPID THING WON’T EMBED.  No hard feelings if “no” is your vote.


Alright folks, time for a bunch of quick hit, random thoughts from yours truly.  First and foremost – I think I’m going to call these entries “One-Touch Passes”, since I basically just touch on a topic for a second, then hand it over to you to deal with.  And y’know, it’s mandatory it be some shitty hockey-related play on words, so yeah.  One-Touch Passes – June 30th Edition.


Would you rather have a good, competitive team every year and get to enjoy lots of wins and playoff rounds (but never win a cup), or be crappy for like, 15 years, then win a Cup?  On the one hand you could be Carolina – horrible most years, but they injected a Stanley Cup into the misery.  On the other hand, you could be San Jose, who’ve won everything but the Cup.  As a yearly fan, wouldn’t the San Jose thing be more fun?  What would you prefer? (St. Louis might be a better example than San Jose – until a few years back, they made playoffs 23 straight years without grabbing the big prize).


Two guys I played with that are rising through the ranks (one faster than the other) smoke “a little bit” of weed before going to the gym.  Admit it, you’re mind is blown by that.  I know mine was.


I heard a story the other day about Zenon Konopka – I guess he’s already buddies with other athletes down in Tampa.  He threw out the first pitch at a Rays game, and at the urging’s of who he calls “Longo” (Evan Longoria), he threw a knuckleball.  Kinda ballsy, no?


As you know, guys give each other shit on the ice nearly every time some other guy messes up, with “handle it” being the go-to expression for a guy who didn’t catch a pass that was near-impossible to corral (neck-high, grenade, whatever).  After all ”you can’t give a good player a bad pass” (you can’t).  I had forgotten until seeing Darrell Hay last week that every time a teammate does anything off the ice that he “should” have been able to do, he gets a “handle that” too.


Every time I see it, I get chills from the Landon Donovan goal against Algeria, and I don’t even follow soccer.  Can’t imagine what that does for diehards.  By the way, if you haven’t seen the headline from after the Ghana loss…. you HAVE to click this link.


Y’know what’s amazing about old Gretzky highlights?  The slapshot.  With his dainty looking frame, and those old ten pound sticks (even his silver aluminums sucked. He gave my bro and I one – neat at the time, now it feels like I should slide weights on each end and do curls with it), he still managed a quick, aerodynamic bomb that boggled “goalies” of the day.  Impressive stuff.


“Louie” debuted on FX last night, Louie CK’s new show.  That guy…. that guy is the funniest human alive today.  The show will be great even if it isn’t, because he’s just that priceless.


Not sure if you saw my article on the pros and cons of getting drafted (through the eyes of the undrafted) for USA Today yesterday.  If you didn’t, check it out (and click “recommend”) here.


 I’m gonna be doing a live chat with the boys over at Hockey Primetime tomorrow, so be sure to stop by and tell me what a good fer nuthin d-bag I am.


Since we’re a day away from free agency, we might as well get a conversation going….. who’s going to be the surprise signing?  Kovalchuk to the Islanders?  Lebron to the Mavericks?  The guy-you’d-rather-have-on-your-team-than-Ilya-Kovalchuk, Patrick Kaleta to the Blue Jackets??  (Don’t worry, Behind The Net and I kissed and made up yesterday.  Minus the kissing part)


Will the Toronto Maple Leafs make the playoffs next year?  They have a (very) solid d-corps.  They have more-than good enough goaltending.  If Burke makes a couple deals for forwards…. could they get in the mix?


I’m planning on a second post – a video blog – for later in the day if I get enough of my work done.  And I probably will, because damnit, I work hard (….from my couch).  So stay tuned!


40 Responses to “One-Touch Passes – June 30th Edition”
  1. zyllyx says:

    Me? I’d rather have a good team that never wins a Cup than a suck-ass franchise that trips over its own dick every year and then accidentally falls onto Lord Stanley’s trophy once.

    Anyone who feels differently hasn’t lived through the sheer agony that even being just mediocre produces – both for fans and players. It’s soul-crushing, depressing and hopeless. It’s defeat before the game even starts.

    I’d rather have a Phoenix Coyotes team that NEVER wins the Stanley Cup if that meant we’d be playing exciting, RELEVANT hockey like the kind of hockey we played last season ALL THE TIME. Judging from our attendance and TV numbers, I’m not alone in that feeling.

  2. Willc77 says:

    As far as comments on the last blog, I tried to post something this morning and got an error message. Could be the reason, could be just me, could be that this whole post I’m about to write won’t work either.

    Being born after the Isles Dynasty, I desperately want to see them win a Cup more then anything. But if it wasn’t for that, I’d take the long years of getting close.

    Count me in the blown mind for the smoking thing. I can’t even fathom that.

    As for FA, I’d love for the Isles to pick up Kovy, Volchenkov, Michalek, Eric Nystrom. They have the cap space for it, heck they HAVE to spend $10million just to get to the cap FLOOR. But I’d be afraid that signing Kovy totally Brian Campbells them into being the Blackhawks when Tavares, Okposo, Bailey, Nielsen, etc need to be extended. But if they got all that, they’d be in for a quick turnaround next year, and get to serious contending the following year or two.

    Perhaps the better bet then Kovy is going after Frolov and sending an offer sheet to Bobby Ryan. So my checklist would be Ryan, overpay Volchenkov to get him here, give Michalek what he’s worth, and sign E-Ny to round out the 3rd line. Ryan would be worth the draft picks, we very well could be picking in the 20′s with all that.

  3. Sioux in the Cities says:

    Being a fan of Minnesota professional sports, I have gotten used to having teams be good enough to get close, then smash your heart in the most epic way possible. I would still vote for that over having teams like the recent Timberwovles, because when your team is constantly in the hunt, you are still able to hang onto that hope that maybe, just maybe this year will be the year.

    Also, I agree. Louie will be great if you’re a fan of his (which I don’t know how you could not be), but I could see people who are unfamiliar with him not liking it. It is kind of an oddly set up show, but the stories are very consistent with his standup which I like.

  4. ms.conduct says:

    I think it’d take either kind of team. Mine just flirt with mediocrity year after year. That’s the worst. Never bad enough to get high picks, never good enough to do much in the playoffs. Though I think if I HAD to choose, I’d take the team that’s good but doesn’t get ‘er done.

  5. karl says:

    I’m torn on the Stanley Cup or consistently good. Buffalo is my team, I grew up there and have followed the Sabres as long as I can remember – I was five when they came into the league. They have recently been pretty succesful but have never won the Cup though Being in the finals twice (don’t even think about bringing up ’99).

    I’ve lived in Chicago for 8 years and have seen some very shitty teams and little fan support turn into this years’ Cup winner. I’ve gone to many games where there were 6000 fans (Chicago – Nashville in 2003, anyone?). Alot has been said about bandwagon fans, and yes I tolerated many of them the past two or so years, and while it was exciting for Chicago to win, I’ll stick with the Sabres.

    So I guess my answer is a competitive team that at least has a chance, you never know what will happen in the playoffs.

  6. Justin says:

    As a mid-30′s Bruins fan, there is no question I’d root for the crappy team that randomly wins a cup. Years of fielding quality teams that don’t win the cup has gotten real old. After all, aren’t you in it for the win? I want that damn cup, and it would be worth some horrible, horrible hockey to get it.

    Sometimes I’ll get a bit high before playing pick-up hockey. I’ve never really had any negative ramifications from that, even if I’m playing with players better than me. Probably not for everyone though.

  7. Liviu says:

    A line that rings true for every athlete, no matter the sport: “no matter where you play, if you’re good enough, they WILL find you.” Also, at risk of sounding like a complete wuss who should be wearing a skirt (or a kilt maybe), I literally cried after Donovan scored against Algeria. So be happy you’re not a diehard, because then you would be like me, now questioning my own toughness. Guess I’ll go lift free weights in a parking lot now. Because I CAN!

  8. KarenfromRochester says:

    If you’re a fan of sports teams in Buffalo, you get used to getting your heart broken at the last minute. Me, I’d rather have a team that is good every year, good enough to get in the playoffs, at least rather than having a team that’s good once a decade. There’s nothing more discouraging to me than going to game at a half-empty arena, made that way because the team has been crappy year after year. That’s the way Buffalo was for a while, and that’s the way the AHL team in Rochester has been for the last 3 years or so. It’s disheartening.

    And I LOVED that headline in the Post! They must have read my mind! : O )

  9. J. Miller says:

    I think i would like one- timers more… just saying

  10. jtbourne says:

    Meh – If this were a newspaper, it’d be one-timers. But this gives the reader the chance to bury it or dish it back my way. Thus, it’s a pass.

  11. Shawna says:

    As a Red Wings fan in my 20s, I’m pretty good with the being consistently good AND winning Cups. Why should it be either/or? (Pretty sure you’re all going to hate me now.)

  12. karlooch says:

    Weed before workouts: at least one would not spend the hour or two at the gym sitting around socializing. Every time I’ve ever gotten stoned I could not speak to others well and found myself deeply focused into a tunnel vision type mentality. However, my workout would probably be wasted after i downed a double scoop mint chocolate chip cone afterward.

  13. Jake says:

    Watched Louie with Hayzee and Bemmer last night. Hilarious. Did you ever see his show on hbo? It was awesome too. Good piece today. Great memories from only a week ago. Good luck with your “burns”.

    P.S. If LeBron doesn’t stay in Cleveland, I think he either heads to Miami and Wade stays too, or him and another big FA (Bosh?) go to Dallas. I’m leaning towards the Mavs. The East is so much weaker though. Who knows. With Dirk and Paul Pierce opting to become FA’s too, things are going to be interesting in the NBA over the next month or so.

  14. AiH says:

    Is it sacrilegious to envision Gretzky winding up with the latest in stick technology, finding himself horribly off balance and then going down hard?

    “Handle it Gretz, handle it.”

  15. wychwood says:

    I’d take the “generally good”. The playoff intensity is amazing, but it’s only a few weeks, whereas losing all regular season nine years out of ten… eh, I’d lose heart on that.

  16. Marienne says:

    First off, I’d comment a hell of a lot more were I not currently in the midst of a cram lab science class on my way into a nursing program. 6 hours of double-speed lab/lecture a day is frying my brain bigtime, which means that I tend not to trust the things that come out of my mouth/keyboard when I get around to reading my blogroll at the end of the day.

    On the topic of using weed before hitting the gym, the two biggest stoners (granted, I use the term loosely – they *were* conscientious about when they were/weren’t high) I knew in high school were both nationally ranked athletes who went on to upper-tier NCAA athletic programs and did fairly well. Like with a lot of things, there’s a degree of “knowing how it affects you” involved – similar to the issue of, say, doing free-weights when severely overtired (make sure you trust your spotter. A lot. Missing the bench stand sucks). Not something I’d personally be keen to try, but I have the reflexes of a drunk rhino at the best of times (and, luckily, the same thickness of skin), so I’ve just learned to suck it up and be a little cautious at the gym.

  17. PVeltkamp says:

    Hey Justin,
    Long time since I have posted but that Kaletta vs Kovalchuk article made me chime in. Correct me if I am wrong but the author is saying that Kaletta is as valuable as Kovalchuk? If I read that right thi is a RIDICULOUS statement. Take all his fancy stats away and break it down in the most simple way with the least amount of variables. If you take a team like Atlanta with Kovy and don’t change a single man, except Kaletta for Kovy, the Kaletta team would be WAY worse then the team with Kovy….. Who cares if he can draw penalties, if they don’t have a legit goal scoring threat then the PP doesn’t make a difference.

    The only way I can partially agree that Kaletta might be a better pickup then Kovy is based on the team, Kovalchuk wasn’t great in NJ, and maybe that is because they already had some guys that could put the puck in the net. In a case like this having a player that can get you some extra PP’s might be anadvantage because you already have some studs that you can put out on said PP.

    If you (not you personally) are just comparing Kaletta to Kovalchuk though, I don’t think you get the sport….

  18. Hooks Orpik says:

    As a Penguin fan who doesn’t really remember the early Cup years (I was 8 in ’92), my memories of the ’90s are of a perennially strong team with the great players in Lemieux, Jagr, Francis, but not all that much playoff success, because they kept having guys like Kip Miller and German Titov play on the top line. (Never could figure that one out).

    Then came the dreadful years of 2001-06 when the team was terrible, but the payoff of keeping up with the team came quickly and ultimately.

    So yeah, I’d say winning it all is the best way, even if your team sucks for a while. And I realize full well that I’m spoiled, didn’t have a Blackhawk/Ranger/Maple Leaf experience of having to wait an entire lifetime.

    But I mean if the franchise is all over the place and doesn’t even have a plan or keeps going back to Square 1 before they even become playoff level (your Atlanta/Florida/Columbus’s of the world), I don’t know for how much longer it’s worth it.

    Teams like Washington and SJ may not win too much in the playoffs, but at least they have some great players and exciting moments before the heartache. A lot of franchises don’t get that.

  19. Sherry says:

    Okay, I’m gonna one-time whiff it ’cause I’m traveling, not on my computer and have no idea if this will even work. And btw, non-commentary comes (or rather doesn’t come) from me when I am too flippin’ busy to do it (rarely am I uninterested or uneducated enough on the topic to not offer at least some commentary). I am fine with the FMJ stuff, just don’t always have time to read it all and feel somehow incomplete if I don’t read, every, word. I say do what you like Justin – you’re always an engaging read.

    Quick hit thoughts on (some of) the above…

    As long as my team plays with heart and character runs thru it top to bottom (thanks for effing that up Big Ben), I am happy to follow along as a fan win or lose. I know that may not be what you were asking about, but I am in “tweet” reply mode.

    Landon Donovan goal – heart began to pump again and I made myself hoarse from yelling. US losing to Ghana – absolutely heart broken. Such a missed opportunity just pissed me off to the point where I couldn’t “feel good about all the team had accomplished”.

    Read about the Louie show on the plane today, and was pissed we’d missed recording it (had planned to as I thought it would be really funny and the review I read affirmed that) – texted hsuband as soon as we landed to set that up and try to find the first episode too.

    Am waiting on f*#king pins and needles for Gonchar and Hamhuis to frickin’ sign already – doesn’t look like that’s going to happen, so who knows what Shero is going to pull out of his hat. Can’t wait until tomorrow at noon…

  20. Steve C. says:

    As for lack of comments on the last blog, I thought you and Lambert covered it pretty well so there wasn’t much I could add. (…sometimes a lack of comments equals good writing/opinions.) Plus being a Ducks fan here in SoCal I didn’t want to rub everyone’s nose in the Draft!
    Oh yeah…I’ll take the Cup anytime. 2007 was amazing around here.

  21. Joe G. says:

    Short periods of crappy teams can be tolerable, not 49 year gaps between Cups like the Chicago experience.

    It’s amazing what large groups of fans tolerate, though. Is there anything more absurd than the popularity of the Cubs while not winning a championship for 102 years?

  22. iggy says:

    I know a lot of kids from Juniors that smoked “a bit of weed” and played hockey and still were good players. Course they didn’t go anywhere. It’s a bit suprising that serious guys playing pros do it, but I didnt fall outta my chair. Just like how some guys drink a bit too much the night before (something you’ve touched on numerous times)

  23. Hawerchuk says:


    The point of the piece was that some talents are overvalued and some are undervalued. Buffalo got 2.5 wins over three years for $1.5M. Atlanta got 2.5 wins in one season for $7M. Kaleta can’t play 22 minutes a night 82 games a year, and nobody’s suggesting he’s a plug-in replacement.

    “Who cares if he can draw penalties, if they don’t have a legit goal scoring threat then the PP doesn’t make a difference.”

    Among players who played 40 games and averaged more than 30 seconds of PP time per game, Kovalchuk was 107th in PPG/60 minutes in 2009-10. He was 165th in 2008-09 and 60th in 2007-08. Teemu Selanne was 5th in each of the last two seasons. Kovalchuk gets lots of PP ice time; he is not particularly efficient.

    Atlanta has finished in the top ten in the league in PP% precisely once in Kovalchuk’s career: 2005-06, when they paired him with Marc Savard and Marian Hossa. I don’t think we can give that one to Kovalchuk.

    Drawing penalties (without taking them) is a very valuable skill. There are very few players with this talent, and their contribution is incredibly valuable. Goal-scoring talent is very visible (especially when it leads directly to goals) but there are many ways to contribute on the ice.

    “If you (not you personally) are just comparing Kaletta to Kovalchuk though, I don’t think you get the sport….”

    I think that personal attacks like that are unwarranted here.

  24. Nadeau says:

    Bourne easy on the Canes man and for a team that sucks so bad I would say they arent horrible Inconsistent maybe look at the track record 01-02 SCF, miss playoffs 02-03 and 03-04, no season 04-05, Cup Champs in 05-06, miss playoffs 06-07 and 07-08 barely, then confrence finals in 08-09 and miss this year pretty badly all in all I wouldnt say horrible just not consistent plus they had some age on that team and it seemed they just couldnt keep up seems like this yr there is a youth movement and do I think they make the playoffs fingers crossed do I think they finish in the bottom 10 nope they will be in the fight for the last spots come the end of the yr trust me

  25. jtbourne says:

    Hawerchuk: I don’t think it is a personal attack, because you aren’t directly comparing them as one versus the other. You obviously get the sport, since your contention is that Kaleta has higher value for your team than Kovalchuk – or at least as much, per dollar.

    Another thing to consider – if you’re drawing penalties, you’re getting tangled with the opposition quite a bit to do so. Shouldn’t that value be altered based on how many penalties he takes in the process of drawing them, or have you already accounted for that? I notice his PIMS per year are pretty high. Actually, change that to PIMS per game – (never played more that 55 games in three seasons, which counts for value too) his average is 1.57 PIMS per NHL game – 1.91 if you count all pro stats, AHL included.

  26. neil says:

    That “who cares that we lost, we don’t care anyways” stuff is so childish and insecure (and completely transparent). I find it disrespectful to the athletes involved on both sides. It also reminds me of that annoying hot-shot everyone has on their rec team: if he turns the puck over ten times in 5 minutes it’s “whatever, I’m not trying that hard”, and then when he makes a nice move on the 11th attempt, it’s “see? I told you I’m awesome”.

    My soccer fan buddies are almost all detractors of the US team, they say they play ugly soccer but kinda bulldog their way to wins (I’m sure they also don’t appreciate the Americans ruining their “USA doesn’t undertand soccer” mythology). That’s kinda why I like them: they have a huge target on their back because so many fans (and presumably teams) want to beat “the Americans”, but they always seem to go farther than they should because they run hard and don’t quit (imagine having this held against you in a team sport!). Plus, they don’t dive as much or exhibit the same atrocious sportsmanship that other international footballers have; if only we could say the same for the U.S. media.

    As a man who is far too experienced with smoking tons of weed (I finally quit a few months ago, thank goodness), I can attest that it can be used wonderfully to provide motivation and entertainment during tasks that are not particularly exciting, like going to the gym, jogging, etc. I used to write 10-15 pages of school papers a day high as a kite, I can still do it but it is a lot more boring and sapping. In a lot of countries they actually offer it to agricultural workers because they find it increases production! For tasks involving learning new skills, multi-tasking, and quick-thinking… not so much. :)

  27. jtbourne says:

    Neil – You don’t think the headline is tongue-in-cheek? Kinda saying they do care, and pouting about the loss a little bit? I thought it was kinda funny, and hopefully not in a “no, we really don’t care” kind of way.

    You quite smoking, the US is decent at soccer, Americans are getting drafted to the NHL…. soup is hard, rock is water, wtf.

  28. Hawerchuk says:


    Yes, I’m only talking about penalty differential, otherwise. For 2009-10, Kaleta is #1 (+3.2 pens/60) with Dustin Brown #2 (+2.1). In 2008-09, Kaleta is again #1 (+4.5) and Brown is 2nd (+2.7). In 2007-08, Kaleta is 1st again (+3.8), Crosby 2nd (+2.8), Erik Cole 3rd (+2.0) and Brown 4th (+1.8). Kaleta simply has a phenomenal talent.

  29. jtbourne says:

    Cool, great work man.

    On a different topic – I LOVE that some readers had a sense of humour today. The results for my poll about FJM’ing “Lambert’s Links” showed that Samuel L Jackson, The Rapture, and 1812 were all reasonable answers to my “should I keep up with this feature?” question.

  30. Marc says:

    I would have voted for “My hovercraft is full of eels” had it been an option.

  31. minnesotagirl71 says:

    I’d take a good team that just can’t win the Cup over a terrible team for 15 years. Watching my favorite team win the Cup just isn’t what it’s all about for me. I celebrate the small stuff. In the mediocrity of Minnesota hockey maybe that’s a coping mechanism.

    The soccer headline cracked me up. I think this was definitely tongue in cheek attempt to save face. Wasn’t this a we’ll take our ball and go home stamping our feet and throwing a little childish tantrum to hide our real hurt because we lost kind of thing?

    Bourne – any thoughts on the Stars not renewing Modano’s contract?

  32. jdubs says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t the objective to win the cup? Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. If my team sucks for the better part of 20 years (islanders) and they win the cup, then suck again, well at least they won the damn thing, and I’m more likely to hang around while they suck because they had a payoff once they may do it again. If given the option I’ll take the “suck for a while, win the cup, suck for a while, win the cup. If your in the playoffs every year and dont win, how much different are you than the team that didn’t make the tournament? Neither won the cup, and the team that sucks has an advantage as do their fans, they know they suck and won’t be fooled into thinking,”Hey we are only one piece away, we only need X and we can win this thing”, over and over and over again. Of course I am only choosing this way if the outcome is known, meaning that after a certain amount of misery there will be joy. I’d rather be ecstatic 10 percent of the time, and a rooting realistic fan 90 percent of the time while waiting for that 10 percent, life ,as well as being a fan, is a roller coaster ride, the longer you go up, or the longer you wait for the payoff, the more exciting it is. Unlike the merry go round, round and round we go, and thats it, no payoff. No thanks.

  33. Tom says:

    I’m very mixed on the consistently good v. occasional winners thing. Growing up in Detroit I am old enough to remember the tail end of the “Dead Things” era, which eventually evolved into the period of good but can’t quite get there, to winning the Cup being almost an expectation. On the other hand, as a baseball fan, I remember the ’84 Tigers evolved into a whole lot of losing and a 43-119 season. That made the 2006 run to the World Series really special, even if they did throw it away.

    Overall I think the consistently good but can’t quite win is better because as others have stated, you have hope. I also thank my dad for not being into football since that has allowed me to never really be enough of a Lions fan to do more than laugh at their mediocre performance over the last 50 years. lol

  34. neil says:

    Yeah I didn’t really mean “U.S. media” in regards to that headline in particular, more responses I have read on soccer blogs, ESPN and the like. I’d agree, that headline is a bit trite on purpose.

  35. Gotta agree with Louis CK. I’ve been watching his sitcom on the Comedy Network here in Welland, Ontario. It’s on after 9pm, so none of the language is censored. Great stuff, and the woman who plays his wife is a hoot. I know more than one woman exactly like her. Bitch. Funny, but Bitch.

  36. P.S…….and the Leafs in the playoffs next year? Yup. I’ve been trying to tell my buddies we have one of the best (and most expensive) D’s in the league, goaltending, as you said (both will be more comfortable this season) and now with Versteeg and more help on the way….we’re not winning the cup, but I see a playoff spot.

  37. PVeltkamp says:


    I will start by apologizing if you felt personally attacked.

    But… I kind of was. I think the stat is ridiculous. It doesn’t take in any intangibles, which there are plenty of in hockey. You actually kind of touched on it a bit in your response. When you said

    “Among players who played 40 games and averaged more than 30 seconds of PP time per game, Kovalchuk was 107th in PPG/60 minutes in 2009-10. He was 165th in 2008-09 and 60th in 2007-08. Teemu Selanne was 5th in each of the last two seasons. Kovalchuk gets lots of PP ice time; he is not particularly efficient.”

    Look at the teams he played on it those years. The year he did good he had team mates (Savard, Hossa). Hockey is not like basketball, where you double team a guy and there is someone open for a wide open shot. If you double team Kovalchuk he can dish to a team mate but it said team mate is what he has had his entire career in ATL (minus Heatley, Savard, Hossa) there not gonna score because there is still a goalie in net.

    Then he moves to NJ, where there are some better players but he doesn’t fit into the system or doesn’t mesh because chemistry is another intangible that you can put a number to….

    I just think there is no comparison between Kaletta and Kovy, no matter how someone spins the numbers.

  38. Ballgame says:

    Love the lambert links. I read his stuff all the time at yahoo. Thought it was cool you do that.
    Keep it up

  39. Ballgame says:

    I think you should write about The Tragically Hip and their relationship to hockey.

  40. Hawerchuk says:


    I think you vastly overestimate the difficulty of scoring on the PP. Kovalchuk has played with some pretty good scorers – Kozlov (6 seasons), Savard (3), Hossa(3), Heatley(2) plus any number of other guys who have scoring talent.

    I don’t think you give us any insight into the game when you fall back on “intangibles” and “chemistry.” You are fitting the explanation to the results after the fact, and you are telling me that no matter what I say, I’m wrong, because you have the answer, and it’s something none of us can measure.

    There’s no comparison between Kovalchuk and Kaleta because Kaleta is a grinder who plays 10 minutes a night. But dollar-for-dollar, Kaleta produced more on the ice for Buffalo – it took Kaleta three years to play the same number of minutes as Kovalchuk does in a year, but he cost a hell of a lot less. If you think GMs are out there stressing about intangibles and ignoring dollar values, well, you must love the Boogaard signing.

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