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Round One, Night One. Summary: I Sucked At My Job.

 

Y’know what’s horrible?  How all the channels dedicated to one sport – the NHL Network, NBA, Golf, whatever – have those three minute infomercials instead of real ones.  Commercials suck enough to begin with, but at least play to my A.D.D. and dudeness by running some 30 second ads in which no image is on the screen for longer than two seconds, and most of the images are girls in bikinis with beer.

And each one is worse than the last.  As a commentor recently wrote: “Theahs no messin’ up yoah doah!”

Brutal.

Moving on.

Well done, Coyotes fans (um, the team too).

Soooo, I was at the Coyotes/Red Wings game, and had an absolute blast.

I was upper (upper) deck, but I continue to maintain that Jobing.com is one of the nicest arena’s in the league (not that anyone disagrees with me on that).   You can see the action from anywhere. 

Totally random thought to start the blog – I was struck by how nice the Wings uni’s are.  Turns out I’ve never seen them in person before, which is kinda sad, and that the simple red and white rocks the party that rocks the party.  Original six jersey’s rule, dude.  Toronto, Chi-town, Boston?  C’mon.  Those three are badass too. 

Like you, when Bryzgalov looked he had just put his head on a bat, spun, did a whippit, then tried to catch Holmstrom’s shot and missed – I couldn’t help but think the ‘Yotes were in deep, deep doodoo.  I mean, if your team leans on your Vezina-contending goalie to win, and said goalie lets in what might be – and I mean this – the worst goal scored in the NHL this year, you’re in a bit of a pickle.

"Deeaaaaammmmnnn, lookitthat assss!"

But let’s give the Coyotes the credit they’re more than due – as they have all year, they absolutely wouldn’t roll over and die.  They recouped from being down badly in shots (I think it was 25-8 or something at one point), slowly took over the game, and actually might have ended up ahead in scoring chances.

Their d-corps has scored a lot of goals all year, and yesterday was no different.  Every time I go to their games, I always leave thinking Keith Yandle is better than I did the time before.  He would’ve been my first star, for sure. (He reminds me of Alex Goligoski – I just wrote a piece on Alex for the next THN magazine, so peel your eyes, or whatever the expression is).

The crowd was absolutely amazing, and the game was great.  Fans were walking out of the building howling, happy and high-fiving.  After what they’ve endured here, the fans who’ve stayed true deserved last night.  It was pretty special.

And we learned one thing about my prognosticating – if I picked your team, you should be more mad at me than if I didn’t picked ‘em.  0-4 to start.  eeeeeyikes.

*****

A thought about the Pens highlights – the Sens won, but scored a bunch of goals they certainly can’t count on getting most nights.  There was the one crazy bounce, then a couple goals from Chris Neil and Jarrrkkko Ruuuttttuu.  I’d put your life savings on the next game for Pittsburgh. 

Ooo, another thought: how about Craig Adams not scoring over the entire 82 game season, then fires a backhand harder than You Reading This can take a snapshot?  How can you score so little with a shot like that?  Dude must have zero offensive sense.

{UPDATE: not only do Sens fans exist, they’re F****D.  Your 2010 Sens Cup song, to the tune of HORRIBLE Black Eyed Peas music.  I literally recommend that you do not click that link.  It’s one of those things I had to pass on though, like I listened to it, so I’m putting it out there in case you hate yourself too.}

*****

Why, Sharks?  Why do you keep doing this?  I really wanted to go to bat for you this year. 

Anyone actually watch the game and want to let me know what happened?  Did it feel like San Jose couldn’t skate with the kids, or was it something you’re not worried about seeing again? 

The Sharks need to bury about seven next game or the stick-squeezing pressure is gonna start coming down on Jumbo Joe sooner than it would anyone else in the league.

*****

We walked into my buddy’s bar to pick up some people for the Coyotes game (we had about a dozen people last night), saw the Flyers were up 1-0, and I almost immediately regretted picking the Devils.  Yes, after one goal.

I picked with my head (Devils sported the leagues lowest goals allowed total, and defense matters in playoffs) instead of my heart (I think Philly is gonna win).  What I forgot, when using my head, is that everybody plays defense in the playoffs, so that stat isn’t that important.

There’d be nothing worse than flip-flopping, having the Devils pull it out, and being wrong twice in one series.  So I’ll rode the horse I rode in on.  But this one is a coin flip for me.

*****

Now, excuse me while I go have a bowl of Aprin O’s and use Pepto Bismal for milk.

#SnakeBeThrown

*****

Your old school smile of the day:

A Picture, a Link, and a Thought

 

The title says it all.  Enjoy one of each.

The picturemreow.

meow

The linkNHL Tries To Woo Fans By Increasing Scoring With Bigger Nets, 3-Point Line

The thought:  The finals continue today, and the Pens have a chance to get right back up on that horse.

Getting scored on first is deflating, but to have it be a bank-off-the-back-wall goal is like having holes in your parachute.  To top it off, King James and the Cavs lost to Dwight Shoulders and the Magic.  The only thing to do now is stare at kitten pictures, laugh at that link, and settle in with Mr. Redenbacher Salt ‘n Pepper popcorn for Game Two!  Enjoy folks.

Penguins/Canes, Game One

 

I came away from last nights Peguins/Hurricanes game thinking three things:

One, how hard are guys shooting the puck on their backhand nowadays? (If you guessed “as hard as people shot it on their forehands in the 60′s”, you were right)  Malkin’s backhander last night – and Kane’s third of the night against the Canucks - were shot hard and flat.  I used a Sakic curve – that shots not even an option.

A buddy and I developed a theory on curves and the type of players who use them, which was right about 90% of the time. 

- Players using the Modano curve (very mild) were puck handlers, great on the backhand, and made plays – usually didn’t have a great shot though (Crosby is in this category – his custom curve is even straighter than the Modano… gross). 

- Users of the Lidstrom curve can usually bomb the puck.  Truly a shooters wedge, this thing was built to saucer pass pucks and one-time slapshots.  On the downside, trying to shoot the puck on the ice still involves cracking the goalies collar bone.

- Us Sakic-curvers liked to have a bit of both worlds if possible, but tended to take more wrist and snap shots then slappers.  I used to love hooks like the Coffey and Yzerman, but to have a banana like those makes taking passes on the backhand (and shooting on the backhand) harder than admitting Carolina isn’t awful.

I forget where I was going with that, but um, nice goal by Malkin.

***

Next, I took away more of the Sidney Crosby effect.

He gives his teammates endless chances to score.  I’m thinking Guerin will see a couple of those chances in his nightmares.

After the game, SportsCentre was explaining how Carolina kept Crosby to two shots, which was seen as a positive.  But they lost, right?  So if they “shut Sid down”, and still didn’t win, that’s a bad sign, isn’t it?

***

And last, if Carolina has two serious injuries, like it appeared they did, they can start waving the white flag.

This is a team that thrives on hard work and balls; when you take a couple of the main offensive cogs out of a team that doesn’t have many, it’s hopeless.  It won’t be fun for Pitt to play them because Carolina will stay physical, but the Pens will never be in any real danger of losing if Carolina is without Ruutu and Cole.  Now, if somebody can just get Ward to go swimming with cement skates, they could put it in neutral.  God he’s good.

 

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