Archive for the ‘whats going on at satellite blogs’ Category

Zdeno Chara: a seven foot goat on skates? (and other playoff thoughts)

May 9, 2009

Zdeno Chara isn’t a hockey player, he’s a big angry tree who can slap a puck through my soul. Please don’t take this as a concentrated attack on the big Z.

But let me take you back to a fuzzy age for many of you young ones. You see, there was a time when this team named the Ottawa Senators roamed the earth as near-dominant hockey dinosaurs. While it never really worked out for that team, they were just loaded with talent.

During this period, the Senators chose Wade Redden over Chara and allowed the Big Z to sign a huge contract with the Boston Bruins. It’s hard to believe this really happened, especially since Redden’s play dropped horrifyingly enough to make him become an absolute whipping boy … for the New York Rangers.

Most would say Chara was the obvious choice for the Senators, but it’s more than a bit off putting that he might once again be a scapegoat for a team’s playoff disappointments.

I say “might” because it hasn’t been possible for me to watch much of Chara’s performances. We all know that plus/minus and offensive scoring do not necessarily define a defenseman, but without knowing his Corsi rating and his totals for goals for/against during the playoffs , those stats still tell you a somewhat disturbing story:

If you don’t feel like clicking on that image, Chara’s been held scoreless against Carolina with a -5 rating in the last three games (+1 in Boston’s dominating game 1 victory). Overall in the playoffs he has 1 goal and 1 assist. He’s also been on the ice for some dramatic goals, most noticeably Jussi Jokinen‘s OT GWG in Game 3.

Surely, the blame cannot fall only on Chara’s gigantic shoulders. That being said, don’t be surprised if the Norris Trophy-level D gets a big bowl of blame barring a near-miraculous turnaround.

  • Maybe the Carolina Hurricanes have found the perfect formula: only make the playoffs when you can make a dramatic run.
  • Whether you like the Alex Ovechkin knee-to-knee hit or not, there is NO WAY the NHL is going to have the cajones to suspend him. Even if the Penguins make it to the Conference Finals, truly threatening for the Cup is unthinkable without Sergei Gonchar.

From a “headaches for the league” standpoint, they are probably hoping that the Penguins advance without Gonchar. If not, the league’s in a lose-lose situation: if AO does get suspended, the Caps were screwed; if the Penguins get bounced then Yinzers will claim that we live in a godless society where the (talent) rich are above the law.

Let’s hope this controversy doesn’t mar what has been a true dream series for the NHL.

  • Even though Jonas Hiller had a superhuman performance against the Sharks, I keep finding myself expecting J.S. Giguere to play the role of Ghost of Playoff Goalies Past against the Red Wings. Weird, huh?
  • Finally, make sure to keep your eye on the sidebars.

The Ducks-Red Wings and Penguins-Capitals blogs have been especially busy lately and we also have plenty of goodness going on in the Hurricanes-Bruins and Canucks-Blackhawks blogs. I’ll try to keep a better eye on them as the series go deeper, but don’t let their great (no, make that superior) work slip under the radar.

Karmic battle tied: Hockey 1, Horse racing 1

May 5, 2009

We beat up on NBC all the time. Seriously, we really take out a lot of aggression on the peacock. Seriously.

But let’s give the network a little credit; they stuck with the Anaheim-Detroit game even though it went to three OTs. In fact, the devotion was deep enough to preempt a racing event. Somewhere, Chris Drury is smiling. (Of course, he’s just grinning as he collects his ill-gotten riches). We felt it necessary to provide a subtle hat tip to a network that gets a LOT of abuse from the hockey blogosphere, particularly on this blog. Thanks, NBC. Maybe you’re not so bad after all? (OK, let’s not get ahead of ourselves)

The Anaheim Calling gang did a nice breakdown of Game 2 of Detroit-Anaheim. Be sure to check it out.

Another hockey blog adventure

May 3, 2009

Cornelius has another great photo-report sharing his experiences in game 1 of Boston-Carolina. Check it out at our Bruins-Hurricanes blog. Also, if you’re interested, here’s his first trip report from the Bruins’ first round series against Montreal.

Anaheim Calling on the controversial Mike Brown hit on Jiri Hudler

May 2, 2009

It’s not quite a hockey Zapruder film, but Mike Brown‘s (borderline? dirty? suspension-worthy? incidental?) hit on Jiri Hudler caused Hudler to get 10 stitches and hockey fans to debate the merits of the hit. Some compared it to Scott Stevens‘ hit on Paul Kariya. Some said it was like Donald Brashear‘s late hit against the Rangers.

Read about it on the Detroit-Anaheim blog. Where should it land on the Wheel of Misfortune?

Rudy Kelly’s sweet, sweet hate

May 2, 2009

Rudy Kelly breaks down everything (and everyone and every reason) to hate about Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin, Evgeni Malkin and more in the Capitals-Penguins series. Click on the beefcake photo (or right here) to read it. Here’s a couple highlights:

Hate Marc-Andre Fleury… because his name is Marc-Andre Fleury. Don’t you have a joust to get to or some peasants to beat, you landed fuck?

Hate Sergei Fedorov… because he has boned Anna Kournikova and now he looks like he has AIDS or tuberculosis.

Hate Jordan Staal… because people are lazy and say, “Crosby, Malkin and Staal” when it should be, “Crosby, Malkin… and then that one weird albino with the pinhead.” Also, hate him because Penguins fans refuse to admit they made a mistake drafting him instead of Jonathan Toews or Phil Kessel because he plays defense, which is like saying, “Yeah, I’m glad I went blind because now I have a good sense of touch.” Wait, it’s not like that at all. Moving on…

Re-design (again) and the satellite blogs

May 1, 2009

After receiving an e-mail from Joe, I decided to fiddle around with the blog layout (again!). It’s still not perfect – I’d like for their to be a vertical line/border to separate the sidebar and the content plus there is still some wasted space here and there – but my main goal is to make the blog easier to read and navigate.

At some point, I’ll venture out and find the “perfect” design in some google search. But my question is, what do you think? Vote in a poll and leave more specific answers in the comments.

What do you think of the new design?(answers)

OK, now that we have that out of the way, there’s been a lot of mini-blog activity so let me try to direct you to the good stuff.

Cornelius continues his great work for the Boston-Carolina blog. In particular, he provides a comprehensive look at everything that is going on in the Boston and Carolina blogospheres (Tailgate in the Gahden). Great stuff.

Rob provides not one, but two fantastic previews of the Washington-Pittsburgh series from a Capitals perspective. I’ll try to provide some Penguins perspective of my own too, but for now his “Five Questions” and Series Preview should give you an ample amount of reading material.

Finally, the Anaheim-Detroit blog continues to buzz with activity. Check out Joe’s Five Keys to the Series (which also includes the time-honored battle of a man’s mind and heart).

Fantastic stuff from the satellite blogs. Hopefully, this design will work for everyone. Feel free to be brutally honest, as this is all still a work in progress.

Anaheim Calling on Versus/NHL coverage

May 1, 2009

Great stuff from the Anaheim Calling duo on the state of NHL coverage. Click on Brian Engblom‘s mullet to go to their post. (Anaheim – Detroit blog)

Pronger: kryptonite for the Super Wings?

April 30, 2009

Great stuff from Joe at the Detroit-Anaheim blog: taking a look at everyone’s favorite gap-toothed, elbow-throwing defenseman’s effect on the Red Wings. Make sure to check it out.

Round two mini-blogs should be less … mini

April 29, 2009

Before I begin my trek back to Dallas (bah!) today, it seems prudent to mention that things are shaping up for our round two satellite blogs. Rather than introduce/re-introduce everyone who’s coming on, we’ll mention them when they write their first post.

Amazingly, things are already started at three of the four series blogs:

Cornelius Hardenbergh of Hockey Blog Adventure is back for more Boston Bruins fun, which is greatness because his Boston-Montreal contributions were exactly what we envisioned for this idea in the first place.

Here’s his post; here’s the Boston-Carolina blog link.

Joe echoes a common CLS sentiment (“Fuck you Versus!”) in his initial second round post for the Red Wings – Ducks series. He’s another return contributor who did a great job last round considering the fact that it was a challenge to catch games in the Columbus-Detroit series.

Here’s his post; here’s the Detroit-Anaheim blog link.

Sha Sha of Vancity Canuck and The Hockey Bay is back as well, giving a taste of the Canucks-Hawks TV schedule as well as posting the Youtube video of a fight that was entertaining, memorable AND completely relevant to the series.

Here’s the post; here’s the Vancouver-Chicago blog link.

While we haven’t posted anything yet for Washington-Pittsburgh, we expect there to be PLENTY to write about for Gary Bettman’s ultimate wet dream.

Stay tuned, and update your bookmarks/RSS readers everyone. The second round looks like it will be a doozy.

Epic jersey fouls and a hockey adventure in Boston

April 19, 2009

Fantastic stuff from Cornelius of the great Bruins-oriented Hockey Blog Adventure. Just a priceless group of photos from his experiences going to Game 1 and 2 of the Boston-Montreal series.

Keep your eyes peeled on all the miniblogs because we’re adding contributors left and right. I’ll do my best to drop links up on the main blog, especially when it’s a first-time contribution, but there might some posts that go up while I’m away from the ‘ol laptop.

Great stuff from Cornelius at the Boston-Montreal blog.