Sunday, October 21, 2007

HNIC: Leafs Get Raked and the Battle of Alberta


It was a Saturday of night entertaining hockey. On the Hockey Night in Canada broadcast we had an original six matchup between the Leafs and the Blackhawks followed by the first regular season Battle of Alberta.

Leafs vs. Hawks:
Well this was an entertaining game to say the least. I think Calgary dodged a bullet letting Andrea Susan (Zyuzin) go. Poor guy, he's got to the be unluckiest russian alive in the post cold war era. Mats dazzled us with a beauty short handed goal while T-Kab and Kilger also notched some love in the goals category. The Leafs soon found themselves in a 3-1 situation against a rookie filled Hawks. Honestly, I thought the Leafs had this one in the bag. Then the penalties started. I don't think you have to be a rocket scientist to point out the Leaf's biggest issue, penalties. I don't think you have to be Denis Savard to take advantage of that either. Pairing the rookies with some savvy veterans the Hawks shelled Raycroft in the third and pretty much demoralized the Leafs. Toews and Kane will be exciting to watch as they progress. Lang also demonstrated some class passing off for an empty netter. The reffing was a bit anti-leaf but hey, what can you do?

Battle of Alberta:
Well, Calgary and Edmonton compete on every level about everything. I think andrew was actually at the dome trying to rally his boys to a win against the Flames. Uh, sorry andrew, I hope your hangover wasn't fatal ;-)

I'm hopeful for the Flames at this point. That was the most complete game they have played this season. Kipper is back off his 'inexplicable' (credit to simpson for that color commentating gem) three week warm up and stopping the puck. Flames defense didn't stink. Offensively I was sad none of the Flames notched a double goal night but that was my only complaint.

To be fair, the Oilers don't suck. It not for Rollie the score would have been 1 million - 1 but the Oilers cast is replete with youngsters. Ha, I just used replete in a post. (Congrats to SammyG on his first goal.) The Flames just applied a steady, relentless, and consistent pressure backed by a solid PP. I think, if this keeps up, the Flames will be effective against the powerhouses of the West.

FIGHTS! Warrener and Torres, despite Rhett's mad haymakers I think that was a draw but Stortini and Nolan? Oye! well done.

7 comments:

Johnny Canucklehead said...

Every Rhett Warrener fight always goes to his opponent on points. Call it the sleaze-bag penalty for hitting on my girlfriend a while back. Y'all know Willie Mitchell or Sami Salo would never play a brother like that.

walkinvisible said...

no matter how hot-and-cold aucoin will be during his overpaid contract in calgary, i will continuously remind myself that picking him up allowed us to get rid of zyuzin and his constant gaffes. i realize it doesn't stand up against the cap, but you really have to subtract zyuzin's 1.5mil from aucoin's 4mil, being that we'd have to pay SOMEONE at least 2.5 to suck up those minutes, and zyuzin would have spent 07/08 on the bench in a flaming C....

Rob said...

Hahaha Johnny, I will give you that one. Rhett is a bit of a sleazer.

WI, amen to that. Aucoin is going to be all over the place this season but at least there will be less of the highlight reel bobbles. Now about that shift chart . . .

shaun said...

hm... i've actually been really impressed with aucoin the last couple games. he seems to be just what the team needed. some stability and another shot on the back-end. i think he's going to get back to his former stature. in fact, i think the d has been improving as a unit with every game. they're not perfect, but they're getting to be pretty good.

i also thought hale played a good game last night. i'd like to see more of warrener-hale and (a lot) less of warrener-erickson.

and what can you say for our top two lines? we basically have two #1 lines which is just nuts... if moss would find some hands around the net, the nilson-lombardi-moss line could be deadly.

walkinvisible said...

hale is definitely an improvement over eriksson, and i'm hoping the coaches are seeing it, as well. he had one monster hit last night (the one that may have led directly to nolan fighting stortini) and another very impressive, though somewhat illegal, takedown of hemsky (i believe), who would have probably had a seriously good scoring opportunity had he not done so...

i'll be honest, though, i still miss ference.

shaun said...

oh i know... ference is exactly what we need paired with warrener. great mobility and a touch of offence. hell, he could even play up the 2nd powerplay and 2nd pk unit and look totally comfortable in either situation. you can't really say that about hale/erickson/warrener, and regehr/sarich don't bring enough offence to really warrant having them on the pp other than out of necessity (in my opinion).

i don't think the hale hit on hemsky was illegal was it? it looked like he got his knee up, but it also looks like that might have been in response to hemsky strangely trying to jump over the hit. not sure... in any event, i loved hale's physicality last night.

Tanith said...

Well said.