Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Yet another must win game.

Flames and Canucks meet up tonite. I could use the usual cliches, spirited affair, big game, must win situation, playoff hockey, etc, but we all know the score. The Flames need to win, scrappy underdog styles.

In a vein similar to the topic of underdogs, the Juice is manning the pressbox this evening and young gun Boyd is in. Interesting times in the Flames dressing room. At any rate, this will likely spur Christian into a goal-a-thon in the near future.

We can hope that Lou's wife has her baby before game time, which would be a great thing for all parties involved. I feel the flames owe the oilers a win tonite so we dispatched a highly trained operative (see above) to tilt the game in our favour. Trapper, the GSN hound, just returned from a secret mission at the Dome. He may, or may not have, chewed on the sedin's sticks at a critical stress point, taken a dump in Loungo's lid, shed all over Raymond's sweater and given that grin on his face he definitely peed in the gloves of Burrows and Mitchell. There are also uncomfirmed rumors that Vigneault's tie was chewed to bits. Take that Vancouver.

Go Flames.

St. Patrick

Unless you inhabit the dark side of a boulder you've likely heard about a recent controversy involving Roy Jr. Course, you could get up to speed here, here, here, here(youtube) or here but the short version is, Mini Roy lost his shit and beat down the opposing goalie. Gee, that's never been done b-e-f-ore.

One thing George Lucas has taught us, besides the simple fact that some things should be left alone, is that sons tend to carry similar traits to their fathers. Now whether this is a result of learned behaviour or something completely and randomly emergent I leave it to you, the savvy and loyal GSN reader.

The backlash that has resulted from a good old hockey brawl is amazing. Last time there was national coverage of such an event it involved adolescents. I suppose the debate about fighting in hockey is being rekindled but I say this, leave it alone. These things have a habit of taking care of themselves.
As for the obscene gesture to the crowd? Well let's be honest, the French Canadian culture is extremely passionate about a few things. Historically speaking, this isn't the first time obscenities have been hurled at large crowds. Trudeau was pretty awesome at it. The Man-from- Shawinigan succumbed to his urge to choke a bitch. Basically, don't mention politics or insult hockey in their presence because you'll have a fight on your hands. I think we need to know if Bobby Nadeau made fun of Roy Jr's political affiliations. Clearly it had nothing to do the with score, which was like 100-0 or something. In the heat of the moment I would have flipped off the crowd too.

This circus is merely a mountain out of a molehill. Get back to playing people.

Monday, March 24, 2008

The Regular Season continues.

I was unaware of this awesome site until google pointed it out. www.divealanche.com, they provided this excellent graphic and I thank them for it.

Over the weekend the Flames provided some spectacular entertainment and won in the process. Dion's goal was a beaut, Lombo finally missed the post and let's not forget Iggy's hat trick.

Saturday's game afforded some interesting observations:

1) For the first time this season, the Flame effected a complete line change while pinning their opponent in their own zone. This is exciting as I have not seen a similar level of pwnage since 04 against the sharks. Gritty and determined, total scrappy dog style.

2) The Juice is trying out a new role, mainly sitting on the bench but strangely it seems to be benefiting the team. Maybe Keenan isn't a complete random line generator.

3) Lombo and/or Nolan
and/or Yelle and/or Primeau look strangely awesome. I think the Dome needs to play Sandstorm whenever these gents hit the ice because they were sandblasting Minny. Yeah yeah, I'll stop with the puns.

This evening Forseberg, (who may or may not play*) Foote and the rest of the Colorado Avalanche return home to face Calgary. Up north, Minny meets the Oil. Uh, GOILERS! You see, the Oilers have become the Cinderella story of the NHL, if they continue to beat everyone we will see them in the playoffs and that's just cool. Either way, I would like them to beat the Wild, makes things good for everyone in the long run. Back to CGY vs COL. . . I think karma will go in Calgary's favour tonight, the Cs have dominated the Avs in most games but failed to leave with the win. Tonight should be an exception.

Luckily, HALEWATCH gets a break this evening as the game is PPV or whatever the eff ALT-HD is. Hale's** luck? He friggin' scores but no one sees it. I've got a good feeling that Alberta sweeps tonight.

*Foppa is playing. I'm an idiot
** Hale is injured ensuring that he will not score.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Stark Contrast.

No funny picture today. Better grammar checking. There's no excuse.

The Flames have no excuse and no time either. Tonight they host the Colorado Dive-alanche and make no mistake about it this is a must win game. All season long the Flames have delivered sound bites at the right time with the right message: play better, play simple, pucks on net, blah blah blah. Time to deliver gentlemen.

Where to place the blame? Sadly, it's on the shoulders of a hard working man by the name of Daryl. Blame not Iggy. Blame not Kipper, dude was bound to have a rough season eventually. Blame the team composition. We have some extremely talented players that are saddled up with young or 'past their prime' players. You can't have 2 people on the number 1 line, you need three. You cannot have 2 people on the number 2 line, you need 3 bona fide second line talents. As for our defense, Regs and Dion should just suit up and play 60 minutes, it would be no less effective than our current situation.

If you are a professional athlete and the likes of Jarome Iginla cannot inspire your overpaid ass to play your best then simply, you fucking suck. Or, perhaps in our case, the best of the rest falls short of what we need to win consistently. To the Flames roster I say this: It's time to rise above and play beyond yourselves, be the difference stop waiting for something to happen.

The Flames have proven in the past that the underdog role suits them. The weight of expectation hobbles what could be the best team in the league. Starting this very instant I drop all expectations, my Calgary Flames suck and are underdogs that I do not expect to clinch the division, make the playoffs or even take a run at the Cup. I expect they will fall out of the playoff race in the next 10 days.

There you go Connie, Lanks, Juice, Preems, and every other under performing member of that cast. You're cast free from the shackles of any expectation, every point you get, every hit you deliver and every positive thing you do will be a bright spot on your ice time. Every other boneheaded move you make will be fine by me because I expect no less. You can now play above and beyond yourselves much like you did in 04.

Fight hard, make every team that suits up against you remember the cost of touching the puck. Please go down fighting harder than you ever have.

This evening Hale is going to score. Ironman Lombo (aka the NHL's official tester of post and crossbar structural integrity) is going to get a goal. Aucoin is going to play like he's 21 and not get out raced in the defensive zone. And Kipper is going to shine.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Oh yeah, they were gonna make the playoffs. . . .

Not for the faint of heart: Toilet Humor

My fellow hockey fans, I am here before you tonight to discuss the state of the NW division. I would like to tell you that is it constipated.

The annual logjam heading into the final stretch started in October and has really picked up steam in the last 4 months. The standings look like:

Minny - 86

Calgary - 84
Vancouver - 84
Colorado - 84
Edmonton - Stanley Cup contenders in 2010.

Everyone is so engrossed with TO's not making of the playoffs I don't think there has been much thought given to the veritable shitstorm of the NW division. Not even Jay Onriat has had anything to say, instead choosing to live blog the Leaf's desperate attempt to make the playoffs winning 13 games in their remaining 11. Jay is a wise cracking fool, his thoughts would be like a warm blanked on a cold day. As the fully digested campaign prepares to pass through the sphincter marking the end of the regular season there remain some burning questions before we plop into the proverbial post season toilet bowl.

1) Can the Flames make the post season? Yup, they just gotta win a few games against divisional opponents.

2) Can the Flames do better than 8th and avoid the Red Wing beat down in the first round? hm, not likely given the current level of playing. If facing the wings in round 1 isn't enough to inspire you to get your crap together, I don't know what will.

3) Is Rhett Warrener injured? Yup, he broke some bones again. Dude needs to drink some mofuggin' milk or somesuch. He's a huge loss because eriksson draws in practically ensuring 1-2 GA per game.

4) Tangs is a GTD, given a broken toe. Damnation, he's proven valuable, more valuable than anyone player on the MTL roster. Are we getting closer to screwed? Yes.

The Flames need to be the ex-lax of the NW division blockage for the remainder of the season. This would ensure we don't suffer the 6 game exit against the Wings that we are predisposed to suffering. Putting on a surge and considering all divisional opponents to be insurgents would go a very long way to getting into the post season with some fire. Thing is, the Flames need to be a coalition of the willing. And they need to be willing to win.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Main component of fairness: Fairies

Folks, I'm back. There was a strange absence of 'game-day' posts because I seem to carry the curse of the year regarding the Flames. As it stands, and has been pointed out repeatedly, the Flames need to play .500 hockey to have a hope of smelling the post season. This road trip has been, uh . . . frightening, to this point. Hopefully the win against the 'Hawks galvanizes the boys in red to a .500 road trip.

So, Pronger got suspended. Merely 8 games for his deliberate stomp on Kessler. Chris Simon on the other hand got a Hajillion* game suspension. Both are repeat offenders, both stomped on reputable NHL pests, but both are not NHL superstars. See, prongs has a history of suspensions and incidents in the NHL just like Simon. Granted, Pronger has never baseball-ed a poor fool in the face but he's done some nasty stuff. At any rate, initially there was to be no disciplinary action but then NEW VIDEO EVIDENCE surfaced and Colin Campbell had to do something. The problem I have with the handling of 'StomperGate' is simple: it's a case of limp-dickery.

1) The NHL disciplinary committee has decreed no wrong doing in the Pronger Stomp case. Before all the video evidence was reviewed. Yep, that's a classic case of limp dickery.

2) Upon further review, the NHL disciplinary committee has decreed Pronger will be suspended 8 games. Why only 8? Is it because he's the daughter of a prominent dentist? No, it's because he's a superstar. Yeah, another limp dick handling of the issue. It would be a real punishment if Pronger had to sit out the first round of the playoffs, this 8 game shit means nothing. The Ducks could sit out the rest of the regular season and still make the post season so Colin Campbell has essentially 'appeased' the public but failed to adequately hurt Pronger. Hell, I bet Pronger is stoked for the 8 game break.

Not that I am interested in the job, but were I running the NHL discipline department with the mandate of protecting the players and all that crap; my handling of Pronger would have been simple. First, make no announcements until you have received all footage from all angles. Once it has been established that there was some goonery going on I would toss out the Colin Campbell wheel of justice and give Pronger what he deserves. Not limp-dickery but a good old fashion set of balls to the face. Not just any balls people, the BALLS OF JUSTICE! In short, Hey Prongs, see you next season. No, really, next season. Take some time to reflect on your douchebaggery, take some anger management and we'll see you in October.

In conclusion, the fairness portion of the NHL disciplinary review committee is clearly run by fairies or the people in charge are lacking the spine to do what is right and necessary. When you have an established precedent, repeat offender, deliberate stomp, goonish behaviour, and ridiculously ugly = 30 game suspsion, then it only holds that if the same situation arises you dole out the same punishment. Or at least explain why so people like me don't post things referring to limp dicks. But then again, I haven't seen Pronger's Blue Steel. So maybe that's it.

** A great deal of flaccidity in this post, my apologies

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Flames vs Caps.

The Flames traverse the mighty North American continent this evening to take care of some 'bidness' with Washington's Capitals (and the rest of the Bad Boys of Punctuation).

The Caps have this one hands down. Our boys in red have failed to defeat Alex the Great and his band of merry men in their last few meetings. Come to think of it, the Flames haven't beat the Caps in like 9 years. Wow. That's awesome.

Anyhow, if you haven't been following the GSN of late, you are not aware of the curse I am currenly suffering/providing/etc. If you are aware then you know what is coming. MG once spoke of the rapture I speak of something else. Something dark and sinister. Something even Chuck Norris fears. I speak of defeat so horrible and wretched that you will want to blind yourself in an effort to spare yourself the utter depravity.

This game will get off to a dubious start with Cujo in net as Kipper has been detained by the department of homeland security. Why? Well, I suppose it's because he threw a puck in the face of a customs officer who copped a feel during the secondary inspection but it's really just a rumor. Godard and Nilson draw in again with the hope of repeating their unlikely offensive outburst against the blues. Good call Keenan. The first will end with a scoreless tie but the Caps will outshoot the Flames by at least 15 shots.

In the second frame, Ovechkin and his sidekick Backstrom will start lighting the lamp with frightening regularity earning their line the nickname 'Metamucil'. David Hale will finally score, too bad it will be an own goal. Note how the names of the CGY stars aren't being mentioned? That's because they ain't doin' nothing on the ice. Keenan will turn around and bench the 1st and 2nd line in favour of Godard and Nilson. The second period will earn the distinction of being the most expensively warmed bench in the history of the NHL. By now the Caps are ahead by a modest 5.

The Third will feature a revitalized Flames team playing with a furious anger and blind intensity. Too bad Dion will be spending most of it in the penalty box while the Flames kill off 3 consecutive minors. Hope is restored when lombo streaks in for a short handed goal but the buzz is killed with Kolzig scores. Juice will take a Regs slapshot to the nuts but in doing so will redirect the puck past a sprawling Kolzig. Nolan, Connie and Iggy will all post goals but no buzzer beaters in this one.

Caps 9 Flames 5*

* the shame of this is killing me.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Flames vs Blues

Ok. I've been respectful of the apparent game-day posting curse. But after hardcore analysis I have concluded the following: it is the Flames fault, not mine.

This very evening a blue St Louis Blues squad rolls into the dome. Despite the playoff dream being snuffed, the Blues tend to bring it. In the Blues favour is Calgary's inability to suit up and and play for the first 20 minutes. Equally useful to the STL crew is Dion Phaneuf, the new crowned prince of riding pine in the sin bin. 7 minor penalties in his last 2 games alone! I would offer that he is sad at the loss of his beloved SUV but for fuck's sake Dion, pull it together.

So, here's the skinny kids:
The Flames will lose this evening to a chorus of full throated boos cast down from the rafters. STL is going to beat them as bad as Keenan wants physically beat them in practice. And you know Iron Mike wants to lay the hurt on these goofs. If I hear one more BS quote from the team about having to play better I will personally drop the gloves at center ice with each and every one of them. Shhhhhh Lanks, less chit chat and more action. Stempy is having a rough season but will make up for it this evening with 9 goals (this is a conservative estimate). Boyes will do ok with 2. In the first period Kipper will face 30 shots and go on strike forcing Cujo to saddle up between the pipes. In the third Cujo will be replaced with a carboard cutout of Worf in the hope its intimidation factor prevents a goal or 3. Note how any comments on the Flames D are strangely absent, much like the ES Flame defense of late. Oh wait, direct all comments regarding Flames ES D to the penalty box where Dion has set up shop. Offensively the Flames can rely on the offensive juggernaut that is Craig Conroy, he's like Jeff Cowan people, the most underrated dude since Fitzpatrick. He's good for a cross bar, the side of the net and one goal.

STL 11 Flames 1


*The fine print is as follows. If I predict a rout at the hands of a second rate team the Flames seem to excel and win by a comfortable margin. Ergo, we are testing this theory tonite. The Flames desperately need the points.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Post Game: CGY vs CBJ

It is said that a picture is worth 1000 words. Above* is the best way I can describe last evenings game. The Flames were lucky, kinda like Hugo above. Don't worry, Hugo is fine Snappy was tired of getting poked with a stick. I'll take the win, but the Flames need more fire on Friday.

*I use MS Paint for all my photo editing needs. Thanks for asking.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008


I am hopeful the hockey gods miss this post. The Flames are a remarkable 0-4 in my last 4 game day posts where I say something positive. That's frustrating.

The pic to the immediate left is a classic example of Calgary defense. Although, in Calgary's defense, the game against the Ducks was, in a word, filthy. You see, the Ducks have virtually the same lineup as last year heading into the post season and they won the Stanley Cup. So it holds that they are in a good position this year. However, if they could play just a little less thuggy I would be happy. Calgary needs to stay calm, hit hard, and play their game. Once you march to the tune of the Ducks you're screwed. Just ask the Sens. Of course, when the officiating is that terrible you're in real trouble.

It was nice to see Cujo in net against the Coyotes. It was even nicer to win that game and see Iggy light the lamp. Less impressive was the Juice and Lombo hiting iron on empty nets. Ouch boys. Of course, had I posted anything that day it would have been predicting a coyotes rout of the Flames. It's like a tradition here at the GSN now.

Rumors are that Mike Keenan is brandishing the Iron. Dear lord, I hope that doesn't involve viagra or a goalie trade. Of course TSN is back from it's post trade coma and they stopped covering the mighty Mats Sundin for a few seconds to offer the most preposterous BS since the Tanguay trade rumors: a goalie controversy in Calgary? You are KIDDING me? If Cujo starts tonite it might be because Kipper is exhausted and likely has the flu.

So predictions. This could go both ways, I'll be honest. Nash is hot. Iggy is hot. Juice is decidedly not hot. I predict a Flames win but it will be close. 2-1.