Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Seriously, WTF is with this dude's hair?

Words cannot even describe the awesomeness that was going on with Brian Engblom's hair tonight on Versus. I'm not even sure where to begin - the slicked back and gelled sides, the muffin-top bangs, or the ridiculous part down the middle? Just a cornicoupia of fuck. He looks like the first guy they tried the Flowbee on.

I'd say it was a rug, but I don't even think the Hairclub for Men would stick their seal of approval on this piece of shit.

I know, I'm a real shithead for making fun of a guys hair but hear me out:
  1. He's on national television, there's just no excuse for this.
  2. He and Eddie 'I couldn't win with Crosby and Malkin' Olczyk karma-fucked Kessel out of his point streak on the pre-game, 1st AND 2nd intermission report.
  3. Did you SEE his hair?! Look again. Go ahead, I'll wait.
Oh, and the Bruins won. Thomas had an amazing game with a killer save that we'll be sure to see a few hundred more times. You can count on a NESN promo featuring it in about 2 weeks. They work so fast over at the big blue ticket - always fresh.

I have to work tomorrow, which is as gay as the day is long. But that also means I'll be posting some stuff from the office, so I've got that going for me. Which is nice.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Game Night Haiku: St. Louis' Night of Discontent

Legace takes loss
Mason gets to take a few
right in the jaw

Game Night Haiku: Death to the Whale, 4-2

Nice to get a win
But Bergy prone on the ice
Kinda kills the mood

i jizzed in my pants

You call it premature, i just call it ecstasy. I actually call it premature too, that is, getting too excited over what has been a re-god-damn-diculous start to the season. Especially with the injuries mounting, but holy crap nonetheless.

Allow me to be brief. In the last five games, the Bruins have forced a non-injury (unless you count emotional) related goaltender switch four times (twice on one of those games). We're #1 in the league with 124 goals for and only Minnesota, they of the Jacques Lemaire trap, have allowed fewer than our 77 goals against. Our power play, despite the missing elements of last years leading goals scorer (Marco Sturm) and two of the top 4 D men, is converting on 26.7% of its chances...good for a tie of second with Detroit - they're good too, but wait, we beat them 4-1 last month.

Not enough for you? Our backup goalie is 11-2-1 with a GA of just 2.09 - and by the way, he's being referred to on Habs blogs as "our new rival". Our top young prospect has a point in 18, count 'em, EIGHTEEN straight games. In fact, the prospect we aren't talking about is also averaging over a point a game this year and had 3 assists last night - In the first period!
Four Bruins chime in at over a point per game clip (Savard, Kessel, Krejci and St. Pierre, who has 1 in 1) and 3 of those are in the top 16 in the league in scoring. A rookie is on pace for 30 goals and is scoring on over 22% of his shots (Wheeler).

Too early to talk about playoffs? Sure, its not even the halfway mark...but let's get excited, and i mean now. This keeps up, and we're gonna be making the OH face for a good long spring. It might look a little something like this...

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Game Night Haiku: B's Smoke Leafs, 8-5

Thirteen goals, good god
My Dad says you don't work hard
enough on defense

Burning Leaves

They smell nice, don't they? I'm hoping to catch a big whiff of some Leafs gettin' torched tonight by the red hot Bruins when the Caveman and I take in the game from some balcony seats. We've come a long way in a hurry from the early days of 2007 when craigslist could supply you with a gameday pair of seats for under 30 bucks a pop. Two measly balcony seats ran us 50 a piece today. Woah. Good sign that people are paying attention though.

As i prepare to don my Kessel jersey for the trek down to North Station, an interesting thought was placed in my head by a good friend who has finally stopped calling the team "Bonesaw's Bruins" and now refer's to them as his own.

A year ago, Kessel was the subject of trade rumors aplenty. It was no secret that the Bruins had some talent and it was no secret that they needed goal scoring. The team was being setup with defense and goaltending at its core, and the peter schaeffer's just weren't panning out for goal production. With Kessel a blue chipper who's potential was still unclear, but who's promise was universally agreed upon...trade was the obvious thought if immediate production was to be had. And you can't blame management for thinking about this long and hard. The last time we had a speedy young winger with an offense first style and a wheeling disposition, we also had Joe Thornton. The guy i'm referring to was supposed to be the Robin to Thornton's Batman (not Chris O'Donnell you moron). As my buddy aptly reminded me this morning, Phil Kessel has now become, well, Phil Kessel; because at this time last year, he was Sergei Samsonov; version 2.0

This prompted me to compare the early years of these two guys, both of whom were first round picks (Sammy went 8th overall in 1997, Kessel 5th in 2005). Remember, Kessel is now in his third full season, when you typically start to find out who a player really is.

Not suprisingly, Sammy's Year 1 and 2 stats were a tad better than Kessel. Given the games played and Kessel's rehabbing from Cancer and the ensuing surgery, this shouldn't suprise us, because Phil had to build up strength following the chemo. In addition, Phil started his career one year younger (18 vs. 19).

Here's a look at the first two years for each player (Samsonov, then Kessel).

81 22 25470.58


Over this time, Sammy started +3 collectively, and Kessel -18. We all know that one of the hot topics for NESN broadcasters this season has been the defensive competition between Phil and Savard. This has resulted in a +12 this year for Phil, so it's safe to say he's making strides there (Sammy, btw, went -6 in year 3). Now overall, these trends aren't suprising, or really meaningful. Both players stayed healthy, improved year over year, and were contributing early in their career's.

There's a statistic called Goals Created. Yes, we're entering hockey's version of sabermetrics. Here's how hockey reference.com defines Goals Created.

"Goals created; calculated by adding goals scored to (assists divided by (team assists divided by team goals)), then multiplying by 0.5. Here is an example. In 2006-07, Sidney Crosby had 36 goals and 84 assists. The Penguins as a team had 267 goals and 468 assists. Thus Crosby is credited with 0.5 * (36 + (84 / (468 / 267))) = 42.0 goals created. Note that the sum of player goals created is equal to the sum of player goals scored for all teams."

In years one through three, Sammy had GC of .23, .25 and .23 respectively. This is nothing special. Here's what is. Only three guys (Lemiuex, Gretzky and Bossy) ever had a career GC of higher than 0.51. The active leader among players who qualify is Joe Sakic, of the Avalanche, who chimes in with a 0.443. While his first two seasons were throw aways in this department, Phil Kessel's GC for 2008-09 is 0.43. He's averaging more than a point per game. THAT's telling.
Already having tied his career high in goals at the 30 game mark, Phil is becoming a totally different level of hockey player right before our eyes. Now he'd have to rally off about 15 years more hockey to really enter into the same air of discussion as the guys i just mentioned, but point be made, he's jumping up a level right NOW. This is no Sergei Samsonov we're seeing.

One other fun fact about Sergei. He may not have panned out the way we hoped here in Boston...but he indirectly contributed in a BIG way to the team we know and love today. On March 9th, 2006, the Bruins traded Sammy to Edmonton for two guys who suck and Edmonton's 2nd pick in the 2006 Entry Draft. That pick? It was used to take Milan Lucic. Thanks Sergei!

And hey...Keep voting for Timmy. Despite being left off the All-Star ballot this season (he made the fucking team last year!?!), Timmy has now racked up over 70,000 votes from write in according to NHL.com. Way to be Timmy. Way to be Bruins fans.

As always, a haiku - maybe even a drunk one - will follow tonight's game.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

GHN: Bs get their streak on, 4-2 over Thrashers

Friday, Saturday
It don't matter to Kessel
Gonna fuck you up

Saturday, December 13, 2008

GNH Home and Home: Round 1

We've conciously skipped GNH from Wednesday's game...so go ahead and come up with your own if you want it that badly. Alright, fine here's one.

GNH makeup (wednesday's 3-1 loss to Caps)

Southeast Divi' Foes
Most are terrible and blow
Except Capitals

As for last night's 7-3 slaughtering of, among other things, a Moose.

What gives more delight
Then Thrashing the Thrasher's D?
Once again tonight!

I've actually got a whole ton of thoughts on last night's game, so check in later on this weekend for a summary of our first Home/Home of the year.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


So right now there is a story that ESPN is running on its' NHL page about Ryan Miller and how he may or may not have had an NHL official swear at him during the Sabres Pens game on Monday night. Quote the ESPN:

"... (Miller) accused an NHL referee of using a profanity in response to a question the player asked during Buffalo's 4-3 win at Pittsburgh a night earlier."

While Miller declined to mention what exactly he asked the official to make him angry enough to curse, he described his tone:

"To be honest, I was respectful"

Ah ha. Sure. OK. Riiiiiiiight.

While no one can be sure ... Allow us speculate wildly:

MILLER: Hey, how much does Crosby pay you to toss his salad?

REF: Fuck you.

Sounds about right to me.

GNH: Bruins show up for half the game, still down Bolts 5-3

Per Johan pots first
Still a team worst minus three
Shades of Glen Murray?

Monday, December 8, 2008

IGT: Tappen's Wardrobe Selection...


Look, it sucks, we've reviewed that already...at length (the Great 8). So why title an entry in such a fashion, you ask? Because i didn't feel like stealing a Bill Simmons header while also borrowing a format of his (or at least made famous by). So here's our first of what hopefully will be many future installments of - "In Game Thoughts"

7:05 - What the hell is Jack wearing for a sweater? How is it possible for Brick to look so clean and have the guy who DIDNT get slapped around a pro hockey surface for 14 years look terrible?

7:08 - Julien starts with the Yelle line (4th) against the Lightning...that's either an insult to the Lightning or a compliment to our depth. Let's go with column B for now.

7:09 - Chara almost killed someone...and i have NO idea why. I'm not kidding, he just started shoving two guys in the corner and they both nearly fell over.

7:11 - Thomas just gloved a deflected shot that two years ago he would've never seen (fortunately, this was going wide anyway). Amazing how i feel like i'm watching Moog and Lemelin all over again this season. Our backup has won 7 straight? WAHAT?!!

7:14 - Last year's number 1 overall pick (impressed with my knowledge yet?) Steven Stamkos just got called for a holding, which i'm pretty sure should've been a penalty on the Bruins. I even rewound my DVR and still think this was on us...more on this later. This Lightning penalty kill scares the crap out of me. OMGBBQ: Paul Ranger sucks. Nice slashing move right there...thanks for the consecutive PP's. Kessel should've finished that though.

7:17 - YEA!!! Lucic Bitches. That was a phenomenal representation of puck movement and puck control. Kessel and Wideman made that a cinch for the big guy in front with some nice patience and vision. I think what impressed me most there was that i 100% expected Wideman to shoot after Kessel found him. I saw the opening, saw Wideman break for the slot, which was the right move, and am happy to see Kessel had the patience to hit him...but i thought, oh here comes your high wrister (when a low one far side would've created a rebound opportunity for two of his teamates) because, well, he's done this before and gotten lucky by actually scoring on that shot. But no - he saw the fact that he had effectively stumbled onto a three on one and actually got patient. Nice goal.

7:23 - I meant to mention this over the weekend. Who is this Mike Smith clown? He's plays the puck more than Savard for chrissakes, much less Dipietro. I need to research this fucker.

7:25 - Ok, Jack Edwards has now described Kessel as "Red Hot", "Absolutely on Fire" and "Completely Smoking!" (i made the last one up) in the last two games. This is going to sound completely like a Globe columnist, but sometimes when a team is in a mode, pucks bounce your way. On that goal, the puck bounced Kessel's way at least 3 times. First, his dangle crossing the blueline, the move to the slot and finally the goal, which bounced off Ranger (sucks). 2-0 B's

7:28 - I told myself not to post entries every 2-3 minutes...so you can blame our offense for this one. Ryder just scored a nice one while i was typing that last one. 3-0 and a Lightning timeout. Jack aptly points out that we've now scored on three consecutive shots.

7:33 - Mike Smith looks like he's hoping there's a trap door under the net at this point. He made that last save with about as much confidence as Michael Cera sang to the room full of dudes doing lines in Superbad. (That link isn't what you think)

7:36 - Post (after 3 shots in 10 seconds)

7:38 - If Jack describes the Bruins conference standings as something like "substantial" again, i'm hurling my cat into the Christmas tree. On second thought, she's been plotting her attack on that thing the way Cheney started plotting the Iraq War in 1988 so maybe i should be happy she hasn't ripped any ornaments off yet. I love our puck movement too Jack, but settle the fuck down. It's not even Hanukkah yet. And i would know...i haven't lit any damn candles!

7:43 - "Ridiculously Exciting": That's how the Bruins are scoring goals according to Mr. Edwards. And Brick just poignantly noted that the ice girls can pretty much just focus on the TBL side of the ice during commercial breaks given the way this one has gone so far. While i'm writing this, Tampa is finally generating a decent rush and its led by Stamkos (he of the minus 746, er, ok, minus twelve). Even St Louis couldn't get through our blue line in this period. Let's not start sucking each other's dicks just yet folks...intermission.

8:01 - Jack just made a very amusing crack about Naoko Fukayama being on a honeymoon and whether or not she should be allowed back on the air given the Bruins are on a streak. He's got my vote. While we're at it, let's lose Tappen, too. Someone just pointed out to me that we can't let her back anyway because this is a hockey game, not a railroad. WOW.

8:02 - Really dumb interfence by Kobasew. Next time act like you've seen a goalie make a save before instead of pummeling the opposing winger into our post.

8:05 - oh fun! Mike Smith just fell over underneath Yelle while trying to field a puck. I really feel like this guy over does this puck playing thing. Even Hextall didn't play it this much and that was before the Trapezoid bullshit. Honestly, i WANT someone to hit goalies like this: screw the unwritten rule.

8:07 - 6:01 (actually Jack, its 4:01) of the Second Period and Artyuhkyn is a hooker. I mean it. He's a hooker, like Julia Roberts and Elizabeth Shue before him. Now get in the box.

8:10 - Decent powerplay. I really love Hunwick. This kid reminds me of a young Glen Wesley (no, i don't know why) sans the red hair of course.Now all he needs is a porn 'stache.

8:13 - 1. How did Vinny get away with the two hander he just laid on Savard? He looked like a fuckin lumberjack in the Strongest Man competition. B. How did Timmy make EITHER of these saves. The first one, he didnt see and it slipped behind him (more on that in a second) and the second one...he never saw either! Great positioning, great luck.
D. Why on earth did the horn just sound? If this is a goal review from Toronto, i want Bettman on the phone this instant because this simply violates an explicitly stated rule about replay review. The play must, must, must stop of its on accord. Brick and Jack are curious too.

8:17 - Back from commercial and now they're claiming accident (what is this, youth hockey?) and they're conveniently reviewing the non-goal anyway. Here comes the apologetic banter from Jack, who's trying not to get fined for talking out too much.

8:18 - Now Savvy's the hooker. Dirty bastard. Why don't you go to your home on Whore Island? How's about a PENALTY SHOT!!!??? Those caps are warranted. Axe will get it for a great SH chance
Another nearly reviewable non-goal....which should've been reviewed. But no. Nothing. No phone call and fake siren from Toronto?

8:21 - bullshit.
8:21:14 - total bullshit
8:21:59 - Chara just pulled a Ray Allen on Vinny at center ice (remember when he juked Vujacic out of his shoes in the finals last year? No? You don't watch Basketball? Fine)

8:2something - Lucic just killed Sahara(?) like the desert? Lucic is probably 5 minutes or less away from a fight. just wait. Oh and i think it's Szczechura.

8:25 - 3-1 Bruins: Bad goal. Bad bad bad. But only because Thomas made the save and then about 6 people crashed the crease. This actually was the right call and i don't need to see a replay to know it.

8:30 - This is far from over. Sort of like the cold war. Putin is nationalizing again, by the way. See, he also does International Affairs. Like when we play the Leafs or the Habs.

8:32 - The Bonesaw roomate just woke up from her second 90 minute nap of the evening; is this normal? The cat is still asleep next to her. ANNNND we're back from commercial. Nice audio NESN, feels like you just pulled out the ground on half my speaker wiring.

8:35 - Great breakaway and second effort by Kobasew, but now we're seeing why Smith has started 11 of the last 12 for the Bolts. (Powerplay coming for the B's)

8:37 - We got a 5-3 coming up! My favorite anticipation moment in hockey...and we have apparently yet to score a goal on one this year.

8:39 - i gotta quote Jack on this...
"back to Charrrraaa's BOMMMMMMB SCORES!! " Terrific shot to the top shelf. Which reminds me: if you hook up with a hockey chick and she is kind enough to perform...you know...well feel free to tell her you just roofed it and tell her the 'saw said so.

8:40 - It's ok, the horn was supposed to sound that time. Back in a bit.

8:58 - NESN just ran an ad talking about great hockey minds and actually had the gall to refer to Tappen and Funayama ( i may have finally gotten it right just now). Unreal. You can now ask yourself what you're doing reading this and what i'm doing it writing it when there are expert roles to fill. I know, i know. Let's move on.
9:00 - the roomate wants to start rating the bruins on "hotness". Things that won't happen for $800 Alex?

9:01 - Artyuhkin now seems to be shadowing Savvy. Interesting.

9:04 - After an uneventful couple of minutes, the B's take a penalty for hooking while Lecavalier was trying to make a one on four rush. Smooth move.

9:07 - Ok, Artyhukin just laid a really high hit on Wideman and yet they're calling another damn penalty on Krejci. Probably legit call, but jesus christ call it both ways. David has increased his season PIM by 67% in the last 3 minutes of play. Thomas is unconscious this period by the way.

9:10 - Ok, Mike Smith just played the puck clearrrrrrrrly in the Trapezoid with the Ref 8 feet away...no call. And down the other end Thomas makes another completely unlikely save. He's his usual unorthodox self tonight and at this point, who gives a shit how he gets it done.

9:15 - Crap. Crap crap crap. Great writing, right? I know. Thanks. 4-2 now, thanks to a soft redirection goal.

9:16 - Bergy just butt humped Recchi three consecutive times and then absorbed a hit from Szczechura so well, that the Bolt fell down. This followed up by Malik taking a dumb interference call right when the visitors might have been building momentum. Let's see if the Bruins can do the mature thing and score another man-advantage goal and crush their spirits.

9:22 - Boring. This has been the most boring 5 minutes of the game...yet it's 4-2 and only 7 minutes remain. wierd.

9:24 - There are still at least two full shifts left from the St Louis/Lecavalier line and otherwise, this feels like it's winding down. Sort of like the career of a certain politician we all know and love.

9:27 - Some well deserved love for the Bruins Assistant Coaches. Ramsey is a great coach but i particularly am looking forward to a close view of Doug Houda on the ice this weekend. The guys is a great head coach in the making if you ask me.

9:28 - Say what you will about Bergy's production being slow to come back but I think he's playing really solid hockey right now. He's arguably our best forechecker night to night (evidenced in one case by creating a great goal the other night) and is still building back strength. The points will come.

9:31 - 2 minutes to play and I'm loving the "Let's go Bruins!" chants from the still raucous crowd. Lecavalier is back out there. He is one of maybe 10 guys who scare me no matter what the circumstances if he's on the ice. The Bolts just tried to pull Smith in a pretty hilarious affair which resulted in a Kobasew partial breakaway.

9:33 - 17 seconds left and the Lightning have pulled this to 4-3. This will basically serve to make practice really uncomfortable for the boys tomorrow. HAHA. Jack just called Szczechura "eye chart". Classy.

9:35 - Need I say it? Here's a mug shot.
It took all night (and 27 regular season games with one "non-goal" penalty shot) but Anders Per-Johan Axelsson just netted his first of the year into an empty net to finish it off at 5-3. It's a 10 game home win streak for the Bruins who are now 19-4-0-4. Signing off, thanks for reading.

GNH to follow...maybe. Congrats Naoko!

Weekend GNH

A two gamer...

A Florida Sweep
Two great backstops beats just one
Sunshine State, Gorgeous

And since we're bring on the boys from Tampa once more tonight (see: theme of December is Southeast Division): Let's go back again!!!

And a public service announcement(s): If you haven't seen it, pick up a copy of the Improper Bostonian, or hit their website to check out a great article on Bergeron's comeback. He's seen here gracing their cover. Rumor has it, next month may contain some Bruins related material, as well. Well done.

The Bonesaw will be attending a private Bruins practice Sunday afternoon, the 14th; So keep a lookout for a nice long post updating you on Claude Julien's wacky French Canadian ways of running a scrum.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Sean Avery: Dickface

Alright so by now you've all heard what Sean Avery said about Elisha Cuthbert. What? You haven't? Fine. He basically called out Dion Phaneuf for banging his ex-girlfriend, saying that she was his 'sloppy seconds'. If you want to watch it, go to ESPN.com cause I'm not going to link the video. Get over it.

Anyway I've got two problems with the whole thing, neither of them has anything to do with hockey.

1.) What guy on the planet has been completely OK when his co-workers (or anyone else he knows) line-up to do his ex?

Think about it. You break up with a smoking hot girl that everyone has been talking about. She's rich, famous, and more than likely out of your league. Things go south and then all of a sudden you find out that two guys from accounting have given this girl a sack lunch.

Yea I'd be pissed - you would to. That would chap my ass that they would ride my coat tails in to the scene.

But then I'd realize that , hey, fuck it - I was there first and they didn't have the stones or the ability to get her before it became cliche. At least I was number one, right?

So Sean should be proud, not pissed. If you whine about it to the local beat writers (who, for the most part, are some of the worst humans on the planet) in a room full of naked dudes ... well, lets just say you should re-evaluate things.

Bottom line - Sean needs to grow up.

Or just sit in his house, paint his finger nails black and listen to 'This Brilliant Dance' on repeat while Dion blasts shots from the point into his hot ex-girlfriend's net. I don't care.

Speaking of which ...

2.) WHY DO WE CARE?!? If Avery says this stuff in the latest issue of Maxim it's a non-issue. ESPN doesn't cover it. The guys at work aren't talking about it. People aren't making pub trivia names like 'Avery's Sloppy Seconds'. And the Stars still aren't fit to wash the South East division's jock. (OK - some things don't change)

I've said worse about a lot of my old girlfriends. My work didn't suspend me (yet). Nor should they have - that's my personal life.

Granted he's famous and I'm not - but I think the key here is that he was at work and he made a spectacle out of the whole thing. Who asks if a camera was on? Give me a break. If you want to make sure Elisha knows you're all 'unhappy face' just leave a really emo message on her Facebook wall.

BUT - the whole incident didn't warrant a suspension. He should have been cut, or demoted to the Stars AHL affiliate. Humiliate the guy, don't publicize it and lock up his future as the next 'controversial' studio guy for ESPN or Versus. Even Marty Brodeur thinks that he's an asshole - and Marty left his wife ... for his wife's SISTER!

Avery's a dick - stick him in the Texas (thanks RC) Stars camp and let him and his Vogue internship rot there.


So, when are the Bruins playing again? Tomorrow? Thank Jebus.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Get out the Vote

Just look at this shit...

If the balloting closed today, your 2009 NHL All-Star starters would consist of 4 Red Wings, a Flame, a Canuck and SIX MOTHERFUCKING CANADIENS?!?!?!

You read that right, as of today, the Eastern Conference starters is set to consist of 5 Canadien skaters and a sonofabitch named Carey Price, who by rights, shouldn't be on the damn ballot given the way he's played against Boston this year. Remember, as Jack Edwards has frequently pointed out, Timmy isn't even a voting option...i had to write him in, just like i wrote in Stephen Colbert on November 4.

My votes? Well, i went homer in the East, big whoop, wanna fight about it? Here's my ballot (which you can submit 30 times btw, thus explaining why some Habs guys have over 400k vote leads):

Forwards - Bergeron, Savard, Semin
D-Men - Wideman (write in), Chara
Goalie - Thomas (write in)

In the West, i thought i'd mix it up a bit...get the juices flowing if you will.

Forwards - Toews, Hossa (you have to), and Hejduk
D-Men - Campbell and Souray
Goalie - Pascal Leclaire...why? Because the Blue Jackets deserve some lovin too...

So there it is...now get out there and fix this malarky that the great nation of Quebec is trying to pull over our eyes. Otherwise, i'm just gonna burn the Bell Centre to the ground.

B's are off until Thursday, in case you're wondering. Now for this week's "Good News/Bad News" section which i've just made up.

Good News: Marco Sturm returned to practice yesterday after sitting out 6 straight games with a concussion. Expect him to get limited ice-time on Saturday night, if not sooner. He made the trip to Tampa.
Bad News: Aaron Ward is in pain. The B's recalled Lashoff (and Boychuck) to fill the void and you probably won't see the Bruins illustrious blocked-shot leader for a couple weeks.

Horn me.

Monday, December 1, 2008

GNH: No Bail-out for Detroit, B's roll 4 -1

Detroit's old balls D
Can't keep pace with the B's kids
Got a five year plan?

Saturday, November 29, 2008

GNH: Black Friday

Eight straight wins at home
Bruins trample the Isles
Walmart style, son

(You laughed, be honest.)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

GNH: The Empire Slugs Back, 3-2

Can't give up shorties
To a desperate slug squad
Mind what you have learned

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I don't mean to go on a Rant here...

Some Game Day thought's before I sign off to cram my psyche and body with live sporting events, too much food/booze and a lot of football in the next 48 hours.

I miss Dennis Miller...but not on MNF - just the pool table and Tears for Fears playing

Thoughts on shitty Canadiens:

Ryan O'Byrne - where the hell did this guy come from? I feel like I haven't even heard his name in 3 games already against the Habs, and suddenly he's scoring on his own net to give the lowly Isle's a point and eventual SO victory? (see video here) This poor guy needs a hug and a Southwest flight to get away. Mercilessly, the frog fans boo'd the crap out of him even though the reply shows he CLEARLY didn't have a clue that a delayed penalty was in the works...thus the empty net. Though i gotta ask "WHY DONT YOU JUST WRAP IT AROUND THE FUCKING END BOARDS!!??"

Or Steal a purse?...

That's right...now I know why i've heard this clowns name before. Last February, O'Byrne and Tom Kostopoulos were arrested in Tampa for, wait for it, grand theft!

"The situation involving the players arose when a woman set her purse on the counter top inside the bar and then noticed it was missing before alerting security. The bar's bouncers allegedly saw O'Byrne outside with the purse and the woman's cellphone in his hands. He was questioned by police.

"They approached him and asked him what he was doing with her cellphone and her purse. He said it was his girlfriend's purse. They asked him what his girlfriend's name was and he couldn't provide the name of his girlfriend," Tampa Police Department spokesperson Andrea Davis told the CBC.

O'Byrne was detained and placed in the back of a police car. Davis said that's when the situation deteriorated.

"There were several other hockey players around. One of them was Kostopolous. Police kept telling them all to back up. Everyone did except for Kostopolous," Davis said."

This is just phenomenal. Way to add to the blue collar reputation of the sport, boys. Fuckin morons. Wouldn't back up? what?!? When your buddy is getting eyed by some dude at a bar and his friend tells you to back up - go ahead and say no. When your teammate inexplicably, albeit it drunkenly, robs a stranger's purse and a Cop tells you to back up, survey says, you back up. I can't decide which of these two is less inteligent (though the own goal is evidence against O'Byrne) so we're moving on.

Atlantic Division - Yikes! This group is good, son. Of the 5 teams, only one is under .500 (aforementioned Isles are 9-10-0-2) and the top 4 are all 4 games above water or better. Think about it: NY Rangers? Ugly game already this year; Pittsburgh? League's leading scorer and his name isn't Crosby; NJ Devils? Maybe they're the pretender here, but they're 4 games over .500 without the best goalie of a generation and a 14.1% PP (worst in the east); Philly? Best PP and most goals in the east...ugh.

Guess what though - with the exception of Friday's matinee, and a late December matchup against the Devils and Pens each, the Black and Gold are off the hook against this division until 2009.

Speaking of schedule...

December is one wiiierd month for our boys. Starting on December 1, we play nine (count 'em, NINE) games against the Southeast out of a thirteen for the month. Oh it gets better. We only play Washington once in there. So the lowlight's are on there way to the B's. Every "stretch" can be called a test for a team if you put it in the right context, but pursuant to the note i made last week about how the B's "played down" last year, this month coming up will be a test of that development for the home town club. It all caps off with a 5 game in 9 day run leading up to New Years...all on the road.

Hunwick - I think this kid is worthy of mention here. That damn Lucic kid keeps grabbing our headlines, but Matty the Hun is quietly proving to be a very serviceable fill in for Andrew Ference. Good thing, too, because Ference had rattled off some of his best hockey this season. Here's a side by side look at there performances this year.

Ference - 0 Goals, 7 assists, +9, 22:27 mins of Ice Time (avg) in 16 games
Hunwick - 2 Goals, 3 assists, +6, 13:02 mins of Ice Time (avg) in 9 games
Considering that Ference was third on the team in playing time, JUST below Wideman, and that Hunwick has stepped in on the PK alot, this is pretty impressive for a young kid who just the other night, was seen diligently fixing his own mistakes after a turnover in his own corner. We're gonna miss Ference for the next 6 weeks, no doubt - but i like the cut of Matt's jib so far.

As for tonight...well, the Swords are an interesting bunch. Miller's been an enigma lately (perhaps explained by this discussion group about whether or not he A. has a gf and B. might have asked two separate girls for their number at a recent Bills game - WOW). The guy is an all pro, regardless of giving up 7 goals last time out (and Lalime is NOT a better alternative for them) and the Sabres have now dropped 5 straight despite shooting like a bunch of Arab's with joy rounds; they outshot Philly 40-25 in a shutout loss for crips cripes. Interestingly, as ESPN points out, Fernandez is 5-0-1 lifetime against the Sabres, with that one loss coming earlier this season in a shootout.

So two big questions stand out tonight...

Which Ryan Miller shows up, and can the Bruins keep the Sabres shot-happy offense in check?

GNH to follow, as always. Enjoy your churduckin.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Claude Julien: King of the Hub?

We’ve reached the quarter pole of the 2008-09 NHL season, and there’s no way that Claude Julien isn’t the league’s Jack Adams Award winner in waiting. That’s Coach of the Year for all of you people who want to turn the NHL into the NBA (and I know there’s nobody like that who is even allowed onto this particular web space) by crushing the old traditions that made the league great. I mean, seriously, how’s that revenue spike doing that came in from changing the Prince of Wales Conference into the Eastern Conference? So good that the premier sports entity in this country, ESPN, turned down broadcast rights to the NHL for $60 million after the last lockout. To put that in some perspective, the NFL’s last television package was somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.3 billion.

But I digress, back to Claude.

He’s even managed to find a way to beat The Frogs on a semi-regular basis and had all of Quebec’s nerves completely frayed going into Game 7 last year. And that with a roster that had a grand total of two 20-goal scorers (Marco Sturm, Chuck Kobasew), worst in the 16-team postseason field, the Anaheim Ducks No. 8 defenseman taking a regular shift (Shane Hnidy, who is still terrible) and a goaltender who got paid almost $4.5 million to be the team’s No. 1 and ended up opening the bench door all season (Manny Fernandez, who is still horrendously overpaid).

Claude’s been even better this year, driving the Bruins to the top of the Eastern Conference. Boston leads the 15-team field in goals scored and goals allowed – it’s pretty easy to go 14-3-4 in your first 21 games when you do that. The Bruins have added young talent (Blake Wheeler, who is an absolute stud, and David Krejci, who looks like a keeper so far), old faces (Patrice Bergeron, who is a plus-4 in 17 games) and have even managed to survive more disastrous signings by Mr. Magoo (Michael Ryder for one, the demoted Peter Schaefer and his $2.1 million he’s making in Providence for another). All of this has been thanks to Julien’s attention to detail and his insistence that Boston gives maximum effort every night out, making its style of play something that the team’s blue-collar, hardcore fan base wants to see.

Perfect example of what a genius this guy is: north of the border Saturday night, Milan Lucic was told not to fight Georges Laraque. That’s like telling Oprah not to yo-yo diet or Roseanne Barr not to be obnoxious – borderline impossible. Laraque wanted revenge for Lucic’s pounding of Mike Komisarek in the Bruins’ 6-1 thrashing of the Habs on Nov. 13, a fight where Lucic dropped Komisarek with a right hand that put Andy Brickley in serious danger of witnessing a Jack Edwards orgasm in the broadcast booth. Julien is smart enough to know that Laraque is a fourth-line butcher and that Lucic, who went on to score a goal in the second period on Saturday, is just a little bit more valuable to his team. Julien assigned Shawn Thornton, who’s about as graceful on skates as Terry O’Reilly ever was, to fight Laraque should he come looking for a beef.

No shock that Boston ended up winning the game in shootout, 3-2, and served notice to the rest of the league that the Bruins are for real. They have one man to thank for that.

(Editors Note: 'The Great 8' penned this one, I swear we're going to give him posting rights anytime now. When will then be now? Soon.)

GNH: Patrick Roy can't save the Frogs this time

Roy night gets spoiled
Luc legend gains momentum
Ole that, bitches

Saturday, November 22, 2008

GNH: Bruins Pound Some Kitty 4 - 2

Boynton back in town
Used to be our turnstile, now
a Luc punching bag

(Hockeyfights.com has some good video here, until NESN decides to take it down that is.)

THROWBACK! (well, sorta)

Dateline, Boston, MA
Officially Announced on bostonbruins.com yesterday, the B's are unveiling a new "alternate" jersey this week. If you watched last night's game, you probably caught wind of Jack and Andy discussing just this, and also adding tidbits about how the Bruins are the only Pro Hockey team to (from day one) have the color black as a base for its sweaters. In fact, Jack claims Harry Sinden once threatened to sue the Pittsburgh Pens for their shift to black from powder blue.

At the cave, we don't believe in waiting. We try to demonstrate a bit of 2008 savvy (or just knowing how to hit a google search) and so without further order, here she be.

In addition to the jersey unveiling, the Bruins will be sending some key reps from the team to sign jerseys and promote YOU BUYING THEM on Monday, November 24th at 2pm until 3:30pm. The list includes Bergy, Chara, Lucic, Kessel, Savvy, Timmy and Wheels. They're their to help with you "shopping needs". No ladies, that doesn't mean you can get roofed by Lucic, but he might help pack your bag.

The B's are planning to debut the jersey this coming Friday against the Isles on a day in which, frankly, I'm GLAD the stock market isn't open because its

Friday, November 21, 2008

Your NESN Broadcast team: Where are the boobs?!

Pay some attention tonight to the game within the game while the Bruins rip the claws off the toothless the Florida Panthers. We all know by now that Blake Wheeler is a stud, Marc Savard could turn Tony Twist into a 30-goal scorer and Tim Thomas is the best goaltender to ever be left off the All-Star ballot.

No, I’m talking about the NESN team providing the coverage. There’s no telling what could be said by this group at any time, but I’m usually looking forward to it…well, that and seeing Kathryn Tappen’s smiling face.

Anyway, on to the breakdown:

Tappen’s an absolute smoke-show who, I can assure you from a couple of face-to-face meetings, looks even better in person than she does on camera. Does it really matter what she says? Actually, it does this year – she’s much more confident than in 2007-08 when she stumbled and stuttered her way through the season. Of course, I’d better not say that too loud – she’s engaged to former Providence Bruin and current New Jersey Devils’ scrub Jay Leach, further proof that hockey players are able to overachieve more than any other collection of athletes.

If she’d just let up on the church-going look a little bit and raid Hazel Mae’s closet full of tank tops and mini-skirts we could be onto something.

Our first analyst for review is former Bruins’ defenseman Gord Kluzak. Credit the guy for donating all of his knee cartilage to the Black and Gold during his playing career, but it should be obvious to anyone that Gordie Clueless has no business on this broadcast. Watch his head movement during his segments with Tappen – he can’t even look at her!!!!! He’s constantly focused on the wrong camera and makes it so awkward that all Tappen can do is be confused. A tip, Gord – just stare at Kathryn!!!!!! Any heterosexual male should be able to do that for more than three minutes at a time.

Every time I see Barry Pederson, two words come to mind – ‘Thank you’. Thank you, Barry, for being just good enough during your playing career in Boston that Vancouver would make one of the worst trades of the last three decades in the NHL and hand the Bruins my favorite player of all time, one Cameron Michael Neely, in exchange for your decaying body. Pederson’s adequate as an analyst, but he could call pull a Ron Burgundy and tell everyone in Boston to go @%$# themselves and it wouldn’t matter to me. Picture all those crunching hits and tip-in goals from the great No. 8’s career and you’ll see why Pederson gets a lifetime pass.

As usual, we’ll save the best for last – Mike Milbury is too good to be doing regional broadcasts. He should grow a mullet and send his resume to Versus, the NHL Network or ESPN. The guy knows the league, its players and its coaches, like the back of his hand. His insight into personnel and in-game adjustments makes me wonder just how he could have been so terrible while serving as the GM of the New York Islanders. Some things just can’t be explained.

Down at rinkside, we find Naoko Funayama doing…something. What exactly it is we don’t know yet. Does she add anything to this team? Does any sideline reporter really contribute anything (unless her name is Erin Andrews, of course)? I just want somebody to check Funayama’s pulse, because most of the time she acts like a robot who needs to be plugged into the wall and charged. I guess the best thing I can say about her is that she’s not Rob Simpson (think Shemp from The Three Stooges) or Nancy Marrapese-Burrell (now that’s a face made for newspapers and radio –

Up in the booth are the men who carry us for most of the night, Jack Edwards and Andy Brickley. Edwards’ arc as play-by-play man with the Bruins has been an interesting one – he went from down-the-middle professional for his first 40 games to semi-towel waving homer in the next 40 games to the full-fledged Ice Girl you hear now. Count how many times Edwards uses the good ol’ Howard Dean ‘Ahhhhhhhhhggghhh’ tonight, usually followed by a cliché like ‘What a hit by Lucic!’ or ‘What a stop by Thomas!’ You could set your watch to it. I like Edwards for his energy, but I always make sure I have the volume control ready when he decides to pull a Gus Johnson.

Brickley is the person in this group that I would most like to have a beer with, and that’s saying something considering that Tappen is still in the conversation. I have a borderline man crush on the guy. Brick still sees the game like the longtime professional that he was and is able to explain it to the audience like the guy sitting three stools down at Sullivan’s Tap. That’s the sign of an excellent color man, which Brickley is. Enjoy him while you have him – he could pack up and head for a bigger gig with Milbury any time he wants.

And so ends the review of the NESN announce team. I promise you won’t be able to watch the Bruins the same way ever again.

(Seriously, Kathryn, ditch the granny sweaters.)

Editors Note: This comes courtesy of 'The Great 8', a new contributor who needs posting rights.