Champs on the Brink

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs, Chicago Blackhawks, Vancouver Canucks with tags , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2011 by davepoleck

I think we can all agree that it’s only a matter of time before the Canucks finally do away with the defending Cup champion Blackhawks. Much of the media was fantasizing about a scenario where the Hawks’ weakened lineup would once again befuddle the mighty Canucks, but they’re just too good this year and Chicago has seemingly lost too much depth.

Tonight they will be facing elimination without Olympic defenseman Brent Seabrook, who is out with an “upper body injury” after the non suspendable hit from Raffi Torres. Good job NHL. If the Hawks were down 0-3 last season, I still think there would be a sense of hope within their locker room and fanbase. This year, their know losing this year is inevitable. In the dying minutes of Game 3, the normally rocking United Centre was eerily quiet.

The last time the Cup winner was swept in the first round was in 2003, when the Anaheim Mighty Ducks shocked the hockey world, sweeping the mighty Detroit Red Wings. The Ducks went on to the Stanley Cup Final that season.

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Datsyukian Deke

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs, Detroit Red Wings with tags , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2011 by davepoleck

Pavel Datsyuk put on a legendary performance during today’s afternoon Game 2 against Phoenix. With Henrik Zetterberg out of the lineup and Johan Franzen injured early in the first, Datsyuk literally took control of the game. His first period was capped off by the play above on definite Norris Trophy nominee, Keith Yandle. He could have easily had six or seven points by mid way through the second period if some of the Wings could have capitalized.

Here are his stats from this amazing effort:

1 Goal
3 Assists
+ 2
4 SOG
3 Blocked Shots
3 Takeaways
16-4 on Faceoffs
21:42 TOI (including 1:19 on the PK)

Stompy Stompy

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs, Anaheim Ducks with tags , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2011 by davepoleck

Bobby Ryan has a hearing with the league for this stomp on Jonathan Blum in last night’s game. It will be interesting to see how the league deals with Ryan, a first time offender, considering the heavy suspensions handed down for stomping incidents in the past.

Back when multiple offender Chris Pronger was public enemy number one and Ryan Kesler was a blossoming third line player, Pronger sort of tried to take his leg off. He received 8 games for this.

Multiple, multiple….multiple time offender Chris Simon also had a stomping incident a few month prior to Pronger’s, where he attached Jarkko Ruutu. Simon was given 30 games for that one.

Considering the difference in the two suspension lengths above, you can see how the league likes to deal with its’ talent differently. Although Pronger had been suspended seven times prior to this incident, he was given significantly less than Simon, the goon.

I definitely think Ryan will be suspended, but because of his star status, that he’s a first time offender and the fact that it’s playoffs, I can’t see it being more than three games. But nothing would surprise me in the playoffs when it comes to suspensions (see 2007 playoffs and Chris Pronger).

NHL Snoozefest

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs with tags , , on April 14, 2011 by davepoleck

Seven games have started in the 2011 Playoffs. Of the 14 teams involved:

  • 3 teams have entered the third period of their game with more than one goal
  • 3 teams have entered the third scoring just one goal.
  • Finally, eight of the damn 14 teams have entered the third period of Game 1 with zero frigging goals!!!

It’s been great hockey so far; but pick it up!! I want highlights here!

Seguin Out

Posted in Boston Bruins with tags , , , , , , , on April 14, 2011 by davepoleck

Tyler Seguin is a healthy scratch tonight for the Bruins. Hey and Phil Kessel isn’t playing either! What a deal for the Leafs!!

That is all.

Stanley Cup Pick

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs, San Jose Sharks, Washington Capitals with tags , , , , , , , on April 13, 2011 by davepoleck

Well, the picture should tell you who I think is going to end up in the Finals, and if you can decipher it then Im pretty sure you can tell who I think is going to win. That’s right!! The WASHINGTON CAPITALS will take their newly honed defensive system all he way to Lord Stanley, beating the San Jose Sharks in a six game classic.

Michal Neuvirth will actually stick around as the Caps starter this time, too.  Remember, he already has two Calder Cups under his belt so he is no stranger to pressure. The Caps will beat the Bruins in the East Conference Final, and the Sharks will finally get over the hump against the Canucks in the West.

My early season pick of the Flyers don’t make it out of round 2; mainly because I am actually worried that they even make it out of round 1 against the Sabres. The Red Wings are always dangerous to go deep, but i just don’t have faith in Jimmy Howard to carry a series for the Wings. With no Zetterberg, and a non Franzen-Franzen, they will bow out to San Jose in round 2.

Of course, I also wouldn’t be surprised to see Washington upset by the Rangers considering AO hasn’t even scored against Lundqvist all year. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see a team like Buffalo, Nashville or Anaheim ride their streaking players all the way to the Finals. That is why the playoffs are great; anything can happen….

PLAYOFFS!!

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs, Anaheim Ducks, Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Tampa Bay Lightning, Vancouver Canucks, Washington Capitals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 13, 2011 by davepoleck

For the first time in….forever….I will be missing the opening of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. I have a ball hockey game at 7 and due  to an oath I swore in blood at the beginning of the season, I have to attend. I’m already planning on taking my phone on the bench in order to prevent anxiety attacks, but it just won’t be the same. Thank God there are five games on tonight!!

Washington vs New York

  • Aka Washington vs Lundqvist; he’s the best goalie in the league and rarely has an off game. The same can’t be said for the Caps in the playoffs
  • Sean Avery will be a healthy scratch
  • People are always so hard to get on AO about not leading, but he had 10 points in seven games last year. Alexander Semin had two assists in their loss to the Habs
  • Michal Neuvirth makes his playoff debut. Jose Theodore was pulled after Game 1 in the last two playoffs

Detroit vs Phoenix

  • Modano is a scratch, Zetterberg is out, Kronwall is returning. Ugh.
  • In 2010, the Coyotes were up 2-1 in the series until Shane Doan missed games 4-7
  • The Wings outscored 28-13 in the seven game series last year

Pittsburgh vs Tampa Bay

  • Sidney Crosby likely won’t be playing in this series
  • After a slow start, Jordan Staal has 30 points in his last 37 games
  • After a hot start, Steven  Stamkos has five goals in his last 27 games
  • Crosby’s 61 points in 40 games still led the Penguins
  • Ryan Malone only has two points in 10 games against Pittsburgh since leaving
  • Dwayne Roloson’s last playoff appearance was in 2006 when he lead the Oilers to the Cup Final

Vancouver vs Chicago

  • This is going to be awesome. Enough said.
  • In the six game series last year, Byfgulien had four points, Ladd had one, Versteeg had three
  • Luongo has never played more than 12 playoff games in a season; the Sedin’s highest was 14
  • The Canucks and Hawks are 1st and 3rd in goals scored

Anaheim vs Nashville

  • Corey Perry has the same number of goals as Erat and Kostitsyn (Nashville’s leading scorers) do points
  • It looks like Dan Ellis will be starting in net for the Ducks