Archive for 2011

Awful OT Winners

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 21, 2011 by davepoleck

Awful play by Marian Gaborik poking this puck by the best goalie in the league. Believe me….he had the situation under control.

Neal just turns and fires; Roloson wasn’t even ready for this one. Pittsburgh is winning games exactly the same way they were after Crosby went down, boring, shutdown hockey. Please come back, Tampa Bay.

I love two things about this video. A) that it has already been posted on YouTube. B) It was definitely posted by a Wings’ fan because it is titled “Cleary scores an amazing goal of the pad of Bryzgalov”. Planned, yes. Amazing…c’mon.

Jinx on Franzen

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs, Detroit Red Wings with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 21, 2011 by davepoleck

So I do a little opinion piece on Franzen over Hossa earlier today and of course, that jinxes him to be a late scratch for tonight’s game. I’m sure he would be playing if the Wings weren’t up 3-0 right now, but any kind of injury for the Wings at this point is worrisome.

The Mule

Posted in Detroit Red Wings with tags , , , , , , on April 20, 2011 by davepoleck

A few weeks ago, I found myself thinking that I sometimes wish that the Wings had held onto Marian Hossa and let Johan Franzen walk in the 2009 offseason. Of course, the Wings re-signed Franzen to a massive extension and that, combined with Henrik Zetterberg’s extension, made it impossible for them to keep Hossa. Hossa then went onto sign with the Chicago Blackhawks and win a Stanley Cup in 2010.

This feeling came with Franzen’s late season slump in which he only scored two goals in his final 20+ games, while Hossa was riding high with 25 points in his last 23 games. Franzen looked disinterested and lazy at times during that slump, and after seeing what he was capable of in a five goal game against earlier this season, it was extremely frustrating to watch.

But once again, the Mule is showing everyone why he earned that multi year extension with the Wings, he performs in the playoffs, while Hossa often fades into the background. Even last season, when the Hawks won the Cup, Hossa only had three goals and 12 assists in 22 games! With Detroit’s run ending in the second round, Franzen piled up six goals and 12 assists in only 18 games. In the 23 games played in 2008-09, when both were members of the Wings run to the Final, Hossa had 15 points, Franzen had 23.

When the going gets tough, the Mule steps up.

Missed Opportunity….Again

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs, Pittsburgh Penguins, Tampa Bay Lightning with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2011 by davepoleck

So once again, the NHL has missed the opportunity to hand out severe punishment for acts that put other players in danger.

On Sunday, Raffi Torres leveled Brent Seabrook behind the Hawks’ net. Seabrook, who has a history of concussions, did return to the game, but will not be playing in tonight’s Game 4. Contact with the head. Check. Blindside hit. Check. Repeat offender. Check. In fact, this was Torres’ first game back from a four game suspension on a hit that wasn’t close to as bad. Suspension……..uncheck.

Last night, there were two more instances with questionable plays. This time, players were suspended for their actions. Steve Downie, in a similar scenario to what Raffi Torres did, caught Ben Lovejoy as he was behind the Penguins’ net. Steve Downie got a one game suspension for this hit.  yet received a 30 game suspension for this one. Colin Campbell was quoted as saying

“Downie left his feet and launched himself at the head of his opponent and he came from a considerable distance, with speed and force, to deliver the check,”

Now I’m really confused. So the whole hooplah about blindside hits to the head goes out the window this year?! I’m not saying Downie’s was worse or less punishable than Torres’, but at least Lovejoy has the puck and begins to skate with it! Seabrook doesn’t even have a chance to touch it before being hammered by Torres.

The second instance from last night is even more mind boggling. Chris Kunitz literally sticks out his elbow right at Simon Gagne’s head and makes clean contact. One game suspension. Greg Millen says it perfectly in the video…..Wow. Everyone is in agreement that Chris Kunitz is no Matt Cooke when it comes to dirty, suspendable plays; but Cooke was given what could turn out to be a 17 game suspension for this flying elbow on Ryan McDonagh. Does the fact that Kunitz has never been suspended really make up for the 16 game difference in suspension?

As Darren Dreger points out in his Dreger Report today, obviously the players are far from “getting the memo” from the half-assed suspensions the league keeps giving out. Case in point: Torres’ first game back in action. Case in point: Steve Downie’s previous 30 game suspension on a similar play. Case in point: Chris Kunitz plays for the same damn team that Matt Cooke does. Case in point: there have already been FOUR suspensions in under a week of playoff hockey.

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

Modano Scratched Tonight

Posted in 2011 NHL Playoffs, Detroit Red Wings with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 13, 2011 by davepoleck

Wow. The Wings will be sitting future Hall of Famer Mike Modano for tonight’s game against the Phoenix Coyotes. Modano has been lining up with Hudler and Filppula in practise since the season ended, but Drew Miller will slide in to that slot at game time. Niklas Kronwall will return, but Henrik Zetterberg has yet to skate. Here is their lineup:

Franzen-Datsyuk-Holmstrom
Bertuzzi-Abdelkader-Cleary
Hudler-Filppula-Miller
Draper-Helm-Eaves

Lidstrom-Stuart
Rafalski-Ericsson
Kronwall-Salei

Devils Win Lottery

Posted in New Jersey Devils, NHL Draft with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 12, 2011 by davepoleck

For the first time since 2007, a team other than the last place team has won the Draft Lottery. In doing so, New Jersey and their 3.6% chance of winning move from 8th and 4th and will likely be looking at Sean Couturier as their new number one centre of the future.

It’s funny how things work out. New Jersey, a team that has been one of the most successful franchises over the past two decades, had the #1 pick all but locked up until a midseason resurgence that saw them push their way out of the basement and in contention for a playoff spot. With the pick of a ball they erase half of that late season push and have an excellent shot at an elite player. On the flip side, the Sens are a team that has been in turmoil for the past three seasons. Their addition of Craig Anderson at the deadline vaulted them out of the league’s basement. Now that late run has cost Ottawa their 5th overall pick in the draft.

The new top 8 of the Draft looks like this:

  1. Edmonton Oilers
  2. Colorado Avalanche
  3. Florida Panthers
  4. New Jersey Devils
  5. New York Islanders
  6. Ottawa Senators
  7. Atlanta Thrashers
  8. Columbus Blue Jackets