…cos the AcidQueen don’t wanna hear it.
So many things to talk about today, so let’s get down to it shall we?
ISSUE ONE: The Defence.
Luke DeCock has opened a lovely can of worms with this week’s iteration of The Monday Debate–and I, of course, had to go and chum the waters a bit. I should have probably been a bit more blunt-force, but what would be the fun in that?
Simply put, our defense is fearsome–and not in the happy fun way, either. Joe Corvo is best when used in strict moderation. Joni Pitkanen is a question mark. Josef Melichar should have been left in Sweden. Nicky Wallin should go back to Sweden (his best season was 05-06. Seriously kids. I love the man but he’s done like dinner). Timmy Gleason…eh. When Tim Gleason and Joni Pitkanen are your likely top pairing? Be afraid. Be very afraid.
Am I being too harsh? No. This team should have laid out the coin for Aaron Ward, but no–Uncle Pete has decreed that the nickel-and-diming shall continue, and so we get Yet Another Nickel-and-Dime Defence.
ISSUE TWO: Bomani Jones and the Survey of Doom
You all remember Bomani Jones’ pitiful excuse for an attempt to take a potshot at hockey in the South find Hurricanes fans back during the 2006 ECF. He deliberately went to places like Sammy’s (which has never been a destination for fans–mostly because it’s pretty exclusively NCSU-oriented and also because the owner is just a teensy bit hostile towards us damn carpetbagger Caniacs…nevermind that a lot of State fans are also Hurricanes fans), the fringes of Durham (where of course he just had to toss out the gratuitous bit of sports racism–i.e. “hockey is for white folks”), and the inboxes of a couple buddies of his (one of whom is a NASCAR fan and the other one of whom isn’t even a fan of the Hurricanes).
Bomani decided to, after getting hit with the Ten Ton Hammer by half the Caniac Nation for being such a douche, whine and cry that he was just trying to be funny. Of course you were just trying to be funny, Bomani. Of course you were. And I am the King of Siam. Et Cetera, Et Cetera.
So–why am I bringing all this up? Because Bo decided to bring up a survey of the 500 residents of Hyde County (glove-tap to janeybell for that zinger) that supposedly showed that nobody in NC gives a fig for (or even knows about) the Hurricanes, and then use that as an excuse to show his ass yet again (on the heels of Greg Wyshynski’s mild clowning on the survey in the midst of getting some quotes from Hurricanes’ Media Czar Mike Sundheim)…after which Bo pussed out when questioned in the commentbox about what his “point” was supposed to be.
SUMMATION: Bo doesn’t know dinky-doo. He’s also a whiner–apparently anyone who took issue with him even in the slightest is an “oversensitive fan who missed the point”. Dudeman is a turtler, bigtime; therefore, I shall dub him Claude Avery.
(BTW, for those who have IMed or e-mauled me asking me to call in: I would like to, but I don’t have a phone at my desk nor do I know if I’ll be able to get into the equipment room at work so I can use the phone there. They don’t pay me teh moniez to hammer Bristoleros on the phone, yanno.
My major issue with the survey is that the sample size is pretty damn miniscule. It’s like Jeremy Clarkson asking a question of one audience member on Top Gear and then saying “There you have it, nought percent of the British population own a Prius/like diesels/want speed cameras/whatever”–which he does specifically to poke fun at pollsters. 500 people is not a sufficient sample size to give a good result, unless the base that the sample is drawn from is also very small (e.g. 500 people out of 10,000). Moreover, where was the survey conducted? Do I have to get out the Barbecue Map and show you mooks the sports breakdown of North Carolina or something?
I also have to wonder what the author of that poll was drinking when he came up with it–but that’s a question for another day.
ISSUE THREE: The Schedule
Yay, schedule’s out. Whoopie-ding, Detroit is the last game before the State Fair Road Trip (and of course, somebody’s already engaged in asshattery over it–quelle grande surprise).
Big deal. SlugFans are worse than Wings fans anyway–except that once the SlugFans sober up, they can at least talk hockey in a semi-intelligent manner.
Now that that’s out of the way:
I’m far more interested in the fact that the schedule is finally back to some semblance of normalcy–of course, since division rivals get played 6 times a piece, invariably some mental giant out there is going to start bringing out the “DEE DEE DEE, SE Division only gets a seed cos they play a weak division, durrr.”
The Red Wings win the President’s Trophy damn near every season because they play a weak division, and I don’t hear anyone saying anything about that. So why does the Southeast Division get hailed on? The Sabres won the President’s Trophy with the exact same division record that the Hurricanes had the year they won the Cup–but I don’t hear anything about that except for the random SlugThug calling me “bitter and angry” because s/he’s too drunk or soaked in his/her own personal issues to come up with something actually intelligent to say. So why does the Southeast Division get hailed on?
I keep hoping to have a cogent discourse with somebody on this topic–but so far it’s been about as fruitful as a Wipe Club raid*.
WARNING: Very funny, especially if you’re a WoW player, but there’s lots of profanity thrown about at that link. Don’t listen at work or with the kids around.
Hairy Gelrose to replace Fidel Tortorella as Lightning Coach – Toronto Star by way of TSN
The Leafs fans on TSN, of course, are hoping that Tortorella comes to coach the Leafs–boy, won’t they be in for a shock when they realize after the first season and a half that Fidel is a coach whose half-life is measured in Planck Time. I mean, really. His harsh uber-disciplinarian style has a distressing tendency to grate on the players, and after a while all but the most fanatical will simply stop listening to him go on and on and on about La Revolucion Gloriosa because they just flat aren’t interested anymore.
Mind you though, they were all over having Chairman Mo as their coach three seasons ago, and look at how that turned out–there’s just no telling those Leafs fans anything, I guess.
Anyway, about MulletMan–sure, the guy took the Kings to the Finals in 93 (where they choked a series lead to the Habs, who SUCK…just sayin’), but aside from that he has done bobkes except for sit and rap about hockey for Bristol. Sure, The President of the Show may be a buddy of his, but c’mon; I am really not seeing that this is an upgrade coaching-wise for the Lightning.
Future Owner Oren Koules (who shall henceforth known in this space as FOOK) is reportedly barracking for this sea change in order to sell hockey in a market where home games already sell out much of the time–which just tells me that dudeman has his head up his ass even more than I originally thought, given that Tampa is currently 8th in the League in attendance.
Sorry Lightning fans–expect more rough seas ahead, but be glad…at least you’re not playing at the Trop anymore.
Wow, somebody in Atlanta Spirit’s brain trust has (apparently) finally pulled his/her head out and realized that they need a GM with a clue for the Thrashers.
Of course, this being Atlanta I’m sure there’s going to be some kind of strange-ass soap opera surrounding all of this (and the hiring of the new GM).
Also, Versus was kind enough to release their Conference Finals schedule:
Set your DVRs.
So let’s recap:
Yesterday morning, everyone in the Caniac Nation was all up in teh dramaz about the Caps pwning face on us. I slapped around some dumbass who got all up in the whiny because I said that Alex Ovechkin can be a dirty bastard–and yes, he can be–and then I took a shot at people that were claiming that there’s some kind of Sooper Sekrit Conspeerohsee going on to get the Caps into the playoffs at our expense.
Yesterday afternoon, EJ Hradek decided to clown on my coach’s meltdown behind the bench in DC. And, admittedly, it was funny–though really my coach is far less nebbishy-lookin’ than EJ is (not, yanno, that there’s anything wrong with being nebbishy-lookin’. Just saying.)–but I knew that the ‘Canes were going to get it together against the Lightning that night…and my favourite Spicy Italian, John Tortorella, gave us a lil’ hep by putting Mike Smith in goal.
Mmmm…..Spicy Italian. *ahem* sorry.
Then a friend of mine leaves me a ticket at Will Call–and my car is out of gas. Hubby was at work, clear out on the other side of the Containment Area for Relocated Yanquis. So I was stuck in my “AQ has no cash and can’t call a cab to take her to le jeu” living room for the night, which didn’t make me very happy–but what can you do, right?
So I settle in to watch the game–and 32 seconds in Eric freakin’ Staal shows why he is The Chosen One by scoring on a breakaway while practically wearing Vinny Lecavalier. I knew then that it was going to be a fun night. Merlin decided, at that point, to decamp to the foyer for some odd reason. The rest of the cats (including Jasmine the Feline Mute Button), however, parked their furry butts on the couch and watched the game with me. Martin St. Louis scored a few minutes later while Keith “Tater” Aucoin was in the box for tripping, and I bellowed “STOP SCORING ON US, YOU LITTLE VONTZ!”
Jasmine, tiny little dainty kitty that she is, then jumped on my chest and nipped my chin to let me know that I was too loud and needed to be quiet.
Then Chad LaRose, the Chuck Norris of Hockey, scored at 16:10 to put the ‘Canes up 2-1–and on to intermission we went!
Now, the second period was kinda surreal. Rosie scored again (and there was much rejoicing. YAAAAAY!), Andreas Karlsson hooked Trevor Letowski in the wedding vegetables, and then a few minutes later there was a knock at my door. I opened it, and there was Scott Walker. “Hey there, Your Infernal Majesty,” he said, “Mind if I come in for a moment?” How could I refuse one of my tribesmen, right?
I let Remo in, and–after paying the Pet Tax to Merlin–he ripped off this shot from atop my coffee table while Mike Smith was off at the Cook-Out on Western Boulevard to get a huge Cheddar-Style with double extra onion and a side of hushpuppies. “Thanks,” Walks said merrily before reaching down to pick Merlin up. “C’mon little buddy, we’re going to need you later.” Then he left, and I went back to watching the game just in time to see Jeff Halpern attempt to use Ryan Bayda as a missile weapon against his own goalie…and then try to re-enact a scene from “OZ” while poor Mike Smith is dopeslapping both of them with his blocker and hollering “GET OFF ME WITH THAT SHIT MANG, THAT AIN’T MAH SCENE.”
Then the phone rang. It was my husband. “As your lawyer,” he said to me, “I advise you to keep the noise level down so that we don’t get tossed from our apartment.” And Jasmine nipped my chin again, punctuating it this time with a meow. And the neighbours upstairs started trying to loudly remind the world that they like to engage in conjugal relations from time to time. Point taken, I turned down the TV in the living room and ChuckandtheletterK in the computer room.
Tuomo Ruutu went off for hooking, and I wondered ‘How long can we maintain?’* The answer was “as long as we have to”.
Vinny Lecavalier got dinged for a double-minor at the end of the period after he got called for interference and then decided to tell the refs what he thought of their parentage, and I knew that it was about to get surreal. More surreal. Something like that.
I was not, I assure you, disappointed.
Bishop Ruutu canonized a shot from the faceoff circle that beat Smith like a rented mule, Halp thought he was a Cap again and managed to score, and then the Chuck Norris of Hockey, Chad fuckin’ LaRose, got his hat trick.
It was at that point that I saw Merlin firmly ensconced on the top of John Tortorella’s head, and I decided that fatigue had definitely gotten the better of me and that it was time to go to bed. I walked over to the TV set and turned it on to a dead channel-white noise at maximum decibels, a fine sound for sleeping, a powerful continuous hiss to drown out everything strange*. Then I went into the bedroom and collapsed into bed surrounded by four furballs and seeing my team as monster reincarnations of Horatio Alger: men on the move and just sick enough to be confident*.
(This post inspired by (and the asterisked lines cribbed from) Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Good night Hunter S. Thompson, wherever you are.)
OK, let’s clear a few things up about last night:
1) THERE IS NO FREAKING CONSPIRACY ON THE PART OF THE NHL, THE OFFICIALS, OR ANY OTHER ENTITIES TO GET THE CAPITALS INTO THE PLAYOFFS AT THE EXPENSE OF THE HURRICANES. SO STOP COMMENTING AND SENDING ME E-MAULS WITH THAT SPECIOUS ARGUMENT, BECAUSE IT HOLDS ABOUT AS MUCH WATER AS A LEAKY SIEVE.
2) I shouldn’t have to write that in all-caps, but nothing gets on my tits more than whining about officiating after a loss.
3) Alex Ovechkin is a fun player to watch and he has leet skillz, but he can be a dirty bastard who gets away with a lot more than he should.
4) Scoring overcomes crappy officiating.
5) The Hurricanes were outplayed from the first puck-drop to the final buzzer. So stop whining.
6) The Hurricanes hold their destiny in their hands.
7) Meredith in Richmond can bite me–and on Friday, I’m going to kick her of the top of Pilot Mountain Jet Li style to drive the point home.
8 ) EJ Hradek can bite me. Him and that damnable towel of his. *shakes fist*
9) I’m going to do my work today and let the Hurricanes do whatever it is that they’re going to do.
10) I’m cutting my hair. Those of you who know me well know how significant that is.
Canes take on the Lightning at 7:00 tonight. Be there or be square.
Great Wailing, Gnashing of Teeth, OH THE HUMANITY – hfboards.com
Yes, once again the vast majority of the Caniac Nation is up in arms over Scott Cullen’s “Rankings of Who I Like”. Nastygrammes have been written, whines have been posted in various places, and people are even bitching on the concourses at the RBC. All I have to say is:
Knock it off and stop embarrassing me, you drooling idiots.
I mean, really.
Are our e-peens really that damn small, that we feel the need to scream, holler, and send nastygrammes to some toolbox at Bristol North just because he won’t rank the Hurricanes where we feel he should rank them? Why should we even care what an acknowledged Sens homer thinks of our team? I mean, really–just because we torpedoed the Sens by trading them Mike Commodore and Cory Stillman, that doesn’t necessarily mean that dudeman is bitter.
(I was kidding about the torpedoing, Sens fans–please put the pitchforks and torches down)
I’ve said before and I’ll say again: Scott Cullen made it crystal clear in the Year of the Cup that he ranks teams according to his personal likes and dislikes, and that said ranking is only marginally affected by such things as the absolutely ridiculous “formula” that he so heavily touts on TSN’s website as if it were some sort of +8 Periapt of Proof Against Angry Fans. The Sooper Sekrit Foarmyooluh is a myth, kids. There is no possible algorithm yet invented that could possibly explain some of the rankings that this guy posts–anyone with half a braincell can figure that out–so I see no reason to waste any more time and effort whining about (or at) him. All it’s doing is making you look like you’re a bigger tool than he is.
I knew it was going to be a rough day when I went to move a monitor at work and my back said “GUESS AGAIN KIDDO!”
So you can’t say that I wasn’t prepared for last night’s game–though I was hoping to actually be at the game, rather than flat on my back AGAIN praying that ibuprofen would be a suitable replacement for Flexeril. I’ll never snark about players with back issues again, I swear on my grandmother.
The game was a bit of a haze, and I admit that I got excited when my boy Malik saw the puck squirt out from under Hank’s pads and hauled it out the zone. I also winced and knew that things weren’t going to go well when I saw Sergei and the Bishop collide at the blue line. But I do remember enough through the endorphinic haze to be able to say that Cam singlehandedly kept the team in the game.
You heard me. It’s become fashionable for some of the less-intelligent citizens of the Caniac Nation to blame the goalie every time this team loses, but really. Cam played just as well as he’s played the last several games. The defence, on the other hand, decided to get an attack of the stupids–and the aliens brought back Atlanta Frankie too, which pissed me off–and I’m sure that the talking heads today will be all up in the “See, we told you they’re going to choke cos they lost their captain!” nonsense. Yeah, cos ONE GAME is really a representative sample.
But Saturday, the ‘Canes have a chance to redeem themselves by administering a world-class beatdown to the Lightning–which will start another nice win streak
So this Saturday I had to watch the Caps-Canes barnburner on teh t00b–which robbed me of these choice comedic moments:
Olaf Kolzig throwing a little tantrum and breaking his stick after the Hurricanes’ fourth goal.
The goal horn at the RBC blowing a lung.
The Caps fans that bused in going home quietly. (I kid because I love, guys–srsly!)
A few drunk members of our nation’s military trying to re-enact the USO scene from “Apocalypse Now” with several members of the Storm Squad.
Well OK, that last one wasn’t comedic so much as pathetic, but you get the idea. The Hurricanes have been playing rather well since the Warchief went down–which apparently puzzles such luminaries (ha ha) as EJ Hradek, but doesn’t surprise me. I’d had a feeling that various guys (like Eric Staal) would step their games up, and I was right. I am right.
So tomorrow the Hurricanes face the Devils for the fourth (and last) time this season. The Devils let the Capitals get a point yesterday, which didn’t please me in the least. Hopefully they give us two points tomorrow night. Just sayin’.
For those who listened to NHL Live today to hear Don and EJ goof on me, here is what I wrote from the depths of my server room:
For the record: The year the Hurricanes won the Cup, they were second in the East–by ONE point. The third seed (who was third-by-default) was New Jersey with 101 points. The Sabres were third-on-points with 110.
Also: It’s the settling for third-by-default that leads to people bashing the Southeast. Nevermind that the Central is the weakest division in the NHL, with the Red Wings feasting on all their conference rivals (except for Chicago)–people habitually expect the Southeast Division to be the mediocre division, largely because they are mediocre. Or rather, because they tend to play like it. And the fans just settle for it. “Oh, third seed is good enough.”
Screw that. Go hard or go freaking home already. Don’t freaking settle.
Courtesy of Emperor Paul I:
Because really, The Worldwide Leader In Rodeo didn’t give the NHL short enough shrift (and act enough like the League only has five teams) the first time around.
More exposure? From Bristol? If Bristol will treat the NHL better than NBC has, I’m the Pope. Don’t blame me, I was only following orders. Of course, I will give Bristol one thing: they can certainly do better than to have former Whalers coach (not to mention the chief fellator of Sidney Crosby and, of course, whoever is playing against the team he used to coach) Pierre McGuire and Mad Mike Milbury as the talking heads in the studio.
WUWT, 30 Rock? You pick possibly the two biggest assclowns in hockey as your broadcast crew over the far superior Ray Ferraro and Bill Clement? May I have some of whatever the high-ups at NBC Sports are smoking, please?
Relax, this is going to be G-rated. Well, PG-rated and catering to juvenile senses of humor at any rate.
Word around the Caniac Campfire is that Niclas “Mr. OT” Wallin is being asked if he’d be willing to waive his no-trade clause so that he can go to Philadelphia in exchange for Joni Pitkanen. I dunno how I’d feel, really.
“Nicky, we’d like you to waive your NTC so we can trade you for a Finnish kid whose name sounds like the Sanskrit word for your wife’s babymaker.”
Umm….yeah. I’ll wait for you mooks to stop with the Beavis and Butt-head impressions.
Moving right along….
According to my boy Luke DeCock, Bret Hedican has formally informed JimR that he’s going to be giving it a go in training camp. Jim-bob, predictably, has declared that he won’t be looking to land any free-agent defensemen come 1 July. What do I think? I think that by not pursuing a contingency plan of some sort (and I’m sorry, but Snatch Pitkanen isn’t it), the man is setting himself up to get shot in the ass again. As for the rumored trade for Pitkanen….
My sources* tell me that Edmonton did some background checking on the the young Finn (what, they were trying to find out if he was the second coming of Janne Niinimaa?)–and that checking apparently turned up something that made the Oilers drop the idea of trading for the kid like a hot rock. Velly interestink, if you ask me. I think I’ll give that an A1.
The Hall of Fame’s Class of 2007 will be announced this week–Mark Messier will of course get in, but the question on everyone’s mind is (of course) “who will be able to fit on the stage with that guy’s ego?”
Conventional wisdom has Al MacInnis,
Orenthal Scott Stevens, and either Ron Francis or Adam Oates as the other inductees–but personally? I think that Francis will wind up getting overlooked, just like he has been overlooked his whole career (especially by Bristol–screw you John Buccigross, for comparing St. Francis of Assist to Bernie fucking Federko back in ’04).
The Hurricanes are shopping for a third-line center to replace the departing Joe, Lord of Evil–and wouldn’t you know, Kevyn Adams was waived by the Coyotes the other day. It seems perfect, Kevyn coming back to the team he won a Cup with, but I’m wondering if there aren’t some issues stemming from the fight he and Bret Hedican had last season. Mind you, I could be all wet–but I just get this strange feeling that this is a fence that might not be so easily mended.
In news from other teams (well, one other team)….
The Boston Bruins canned yet more people in their haste to clean house after yet another lackluster season: this time, they got rid of assistant coach Jeff Gorton and amateur scout Daniel Dore. Yet another futile attempt by the Bruins to reverse the fortunes that are pretty much ruined by a bastard who’s more concerned with raw profit than with actually having a team that has at least a snowball’s chance in Muspelheim of winning a Cup. And whose bright idea was it to name Jeremy Jacobs as President of the Board of Governors?! The only suggestion that would have been worse would have been naming Bill Wirtz as BoG President!
*: TSN, Canadian Press, and Sportsnet. Come on people, who do you think I am–Eklund?
When I blasted the NHL’s decision to go with OLN/Versus for their NHL coverage, I had so many people telling me that I should just be happy hockey is on TV.
Those same people are now bitching because Versus has, once again, bollocksed up coverage and is apparently not willing to do anything about other than show the program at 11 instead of 7:00 as originally scheduled.
I bet Ed Snider’s really proud of his pet network right now. I know I would be.
Gee, what a surprise–Toronto mediot Damien Cox is calling last year’s Cup finalists both flukes because of their travails this season. Oh, he tries not to say it, but please–that’s about as transparent as a piece of Scotch invis-o-tape on a windowpane.
I tell you what, if it’s not some smacktard sore loser with no imagination and a small e-penis trying (and failing) to drop garbage in my commentbox on his employer’s time and nickel, it’s a Leafs columnist who still holds a grudge over the 2002 ECF and the Leafs getting the bulk of their Cup wins knocked off the Cup by the Hurricanes.
Memo to Damien Cox: You CAN get those photos of the last Leafs Cup team colorized by hand, yanno. All you need is a little talent (which you apparently don’t have) and some photo-quality oil paints.
I tell you what, kids–nothing pisses me off more than some clueless know-nothing calling a team’s accomplishment a “fluke” for no real reason other than sheer assy bitterness…except for excuse-making by sore losers with a martyr complex. Memo to “The Troll”: Your comments get trashed without me even seeing them–the only indication I have that you’re trying to post anything is your IP address showing up on my statcounter. You’re the only
Sabres fan person that I have on the comment-blacklist.
My favorite bit is this one:
Still, having both the Oilers and Hurricanes miss the playoffs would, to some degree, put a giant asterisk beside last season’s Cup finals. Nobody suggested either team was a powerhouse or a squad rivaling the Canadiens of the late 1970s or the Islanders of the early 1980s. But nobody screamed “FLUKE!” either. Still, right about now, that’s kind of how it looks.
Lemme clue you in to a universal truth, Damien: no team that makes it to a title game/series is a “fluke”–not a one, not ever. The teams that make it deserves to be there, and the team that wins deserves to win. Period. Were the Devils (may they fester in Nastrand) called a fluke in 1996, 2002, and 2004? Were the Red Wings called a fluke in 1996*, 1999, and 2003? Were the Habs called a fluke in 1994 or the Rangers called a fluke in 1995? No–certainly not by anyone with a clue (which, I guess, leaves Mr. Cox out of the equation). Why? Pry cos they’re not in the Southeast Division or a shadow of their once-dynastic selves–but then, that’s just my perspective.
The only flukes are the ones that infest your liver and your lungs–and if you have those, then you might want to see medical attention. As for me, I’m going to go back to cheering for my team and not giving a damn what any of you mooks have to say about them.
Go Canes, and to Nastrand with the rest of you.
*: For the history-impaired, 1996 is the season after the Red Wings got pwnt in the Finals by the Devils.