Thursday, October 23, 2008

Keep the Peace in the Crease

Ok, I have been in California for the week, missed the last two flames games and have no idea wtf is going on in the NHL. It's hard to remember hockey when you in sunny +30C weather. Whooo.

I would like to take a moment to call out my counter part on the GSN, GaleForce. Call me Rob Tortorella for a moment here, but we need some goddamn posting. Thus ends the calling out.

Actually, GF had an interesting question for me today: Should Sundin be acquired in a current hockey pool? That's a tough one. If Sundin laces them up he will be a force to be sure. But will he? I have to be honest, I grow weary of the older dudes, shit or get off the pot! The answer, no don't take Sundin.

Since I am stuck watching the Caps and Phx this evening I would like to comment on the commentating. It's all color and the occasional play call. It's weird how the US market tries to brand hockey. In Nascar the commentating is all color and banter until there is a wreck. That doesn't work so well with hockey but perhaps I'm just a stickler.

Ottawa has returned to goalie controversy. It's about damn time. Gerbs is a nice enough guy but he's good for about two softies an night. Auld might do better.

Ok, YYC (aka Calgary). They are currently leading the preds. HOLD ON GUYS!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Battle of Alberta Preview

This is a short one:

Flames win.

Look for Alice Hemsky get into a fight with Iggy who knocks out several of his teefs.
The kid line scores a goal increasing the debate surround the sophomore curse.
Garon is benched in favor of Rollie (who will get lit up and chased from the net by the third).

Flames 8 Oilers 3

Friday, October 10, 2008

Season Opener.

Wow. That effing sucked.

The Flames are trying to be more of a puck possession team.
An admirable strategy, if you can pull it off. Period 1 it looked like they were but in reality the 'Nucks were just finding their feet. Things turned south with Connie-Boyd had the stinky turn over with the Sedins on the ice. That's a no-no and turned into a goal against.

Ok, I don't believe it's time to panic. It is time to talk to the forwards about their defensive roles. As well, I would like to see the defensive core not over commit down low. Too many times last night a blue jersey was left wide open and was able to pounce on a juicy rebound. My notes point out that Kipper stopped all the initial shots (not sure I was totally accurate on that) but was murdered on secondary attempts. Rebound control and the D-team covering where rebounds go would help.

Keenan Blender
The Keenan random line generator is hard to stomach at times. It seems that no line can generate chemistry because they only play a shift or two together. I can't say I love this strategy and I can't say I hate it. We also can't say it works.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Dustin Boyd had one helluva preseason as the top performer. With linemates Moss and GlenX they were terrorizing the competition every night.

So as the roster has been pruned, tuned and tweaked, it would only make sense that Boyd has been sent to the QC Flames. Yeah, you read that right, the Flames management sent him to the minors.

Wow. That's all I can say. Dustin, I am terribly sad to see you go when tools like Prust and Nystrom get to play. This is nothing outside of shameful. Now, it's not a cap issue and it's not a one-way deal issue. Well, mostly not a one way issue. You see, they can fire Nystrom and Prust down to the minors but they still have to pay them the NHL money whereas Boyd can get shafted down to the minors and get paid 30k. I'm sure Kent and WI will cover it more thoroughly.

It's a shame to see such a bad mangerial decision especially when your organization relies so heavily on internally bred talent. You cannot do things like this, even Kevin Lowe knows that.

In other news Rhettsky was put on IR. Because that makes a great deal of sense.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Prediction Season

ESPN, the most amazing sports team in the galaxy, took some time away from Monday night football to partake in the preseason prognostication party. Apart from the asinine alliteration, I would like to highlight the humor value of the ESPN team in addition to the few pearls of wisdom.

Firstly, ESPN thinks Dion Phaneuf is looking pretty good for the Norris. I say HA! As if. Everyone knows Sidney Crosby is going to win it with his commanding presence in both ends of the rink. Clearly I am kidding, but while we're at it, you know who is missing from this list? Hal Gill aka the USS Hal Gill. Check out if you don't believe me.

Scott Burnside and Linda Cohn seemed to have some reasonable picks but then I saw Tampa Bay in there. WTF people. Stamkos can't save hockey in Florida and Melrose can take his coif and blue steel impression all the way back to ESPN's broadcast booth. TBay needs to ship it's roster up north for some harden-the-fuck-up training if the games in Sweden were any indication. Rookie of the year and most ridiculously good looking coach is all they have in the pipeline. At least Scott and Linda got one thing right, Trogdor is going to win the cup. BURNINATION!

Notably, you'll notice (sic) that Kipper is missing from the Vezina picks. I have to agree on this and yet deep down hope that I am dreadfully wrong. Kipper looked brutal in the preseason and typically has a terrible start. Thing is, at $8M this season he needs to have a great start and perform like Kipper from 04 or the trade deadline might have a painful boot to the arse of the unflapable Finn.

Also on my gripe list is this notion that the Dallas Stars are somehow going to win the Cup. Look, this is the NHL not the academy of motion picture arts and sciences. There are no lifetime achievement awards and the only way to foist Lord Stanley's Chalice is to drag yourself through hell. The stars have proven, repeatedly, they can't handle the big dance.

But the internet is a vast and magical place. If you look hard enough you can find something or someone that tells you what you want to hear. PuckPassion is that place if you're a Flames fan. I'm a bit choked because the Predict-o-tron 2000 was used without our permission but I like the result.