Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sign me up!

How do I sign up for this promotion? I want to be the next lucky fan!

You know in sporting events when a lucky fan is chosen each game, and if the home team accomplishes a certain specified task, they'll win a prize? For example, the Detroit Tigers have the Belle Tire Blast zone, where I believe a lucky fan will win a set of tires if a Tigers player hits a home run and the ball hits the sign. It's a pretty big sign that hangs right past the wall, and though it's obviously not likely to happen, it has happened before, and there's a definite possibility. Well, over at GM place, the lucky Canucks fans have a similar contest. (At this point I should note that I actually can't find this online anywhere, but I swear to God this is what I heard when I was watching the Canucks/Sharks game.) Here's how it works.

One lucky fan is chosen, and if a Canucks player scores five goals in a game, the fan will then have a chance to win a million dollars.

How exciting! A million dollars?!?! That's awesome! That's a lot of money! How can they possibly afford to give all those people a million dollars?!

Seriously??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????This is actually serious?????????????????????????????????? This isn't a joke????????????????????????????LOL Butter???????????????????

Let me get this straight. I'm not sure I understand. If a Canucks player scores five a game... FIVE GOALS...not three, not four, but FIVE GOALS in ONE GAME, a lucky fan now has A CHANCE to win a million dollars. My guess is they must be put in a name drawing with the rest of the winners of this contest throughout the season, because they can't afford to just be giving people a million dollars over and over every game. Here's a question: What if TWO Canucks players score five goals or more in the same game? Does the lucky fan become eligible to win TWO MILLION dollars?! Oh, didn't think of that one, did ya?

Ya know what? I'm gonna go ahead and predict that nobody on the Canucks will score five goals tonight(I know by the time anybody ever reads this, the game will be over, but at this moment the second period has just started and all-star goal scorer Kyle Wellwood has the lone Vancouver goal in a 1-1 game. I'm gonna say that he's probably not going to get four more tonight, since he has two goals so far this season). I'm actually gonna get really crazy and predict that nobody on the Canucks will score five goals in a game ALL WEEK! I'm willing to make a friendly wager of money/belongings for any that are interested in disagreeing with my prediction, and you can see what I'd be interested in wagering here.

Scoring five goals in a game is rare. It has happened 59 times in the history of the NHL by 43 different players. It's happened once (Gaborik, 2007) since Sergei Fedorov did it in 1996. And guess what? A Canucks player has never done it.

It just seems to me like that might be a bit of a ridiculous idea that will likely not happen this season. I mean I guess it's possible, but I would suggest the idea of giving away $1,000 if a player scores a hat trick being a better promotion, and even that is pretty rare. There have been two Canuck hat tricks on home ice since the lockout: Bertuzzi on 11/13/05 against Detroit, and Burrows on 03/27/06 against LA.

But don't let those silly numbers sway you. Logic and statistics are for losers. My offer still stands. Let me know.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Could we stop talking about the Habs' birthday already?!

I'm aware that 100 years of hockey is quite the mark. I'm also aware that some of the greatest players to play the game have suited up for the bleu, blanc, et rouge. Twenty-four cups, 132 points/eight losses in one season, Jacques Plante's goalie mask, blah to the third power. I'm so impressed with you folks! It's been quite the 100 years!

Bullshit. I can assure you that whatever type of media they put out about this birthday will almost completely ignore the last fifteen years. If we are to remember the Canadiens for all their accomplishments over this last century, shouldn't it somehow include all of last century? TSN continues to peddle stories about the greatest Canadiens of all time. "Who is the best Habs player of all time?", "Who would you vote onto the all-time best Habs team?", "1994 through 2009? I must have been asleep for that, I couldn't tell you a thing about it!"

Tell me one good thing that Montreal has done since 1993... no, really, take your time! I'm gonna start preparing my Thanksgiving dinner while you're thinking about it...

... ... ...

(some time later)

Oh! You thought of something?... No? It's been three days man! All of our T-day leftovers have been shat out already and you can't think of one memorable moment during the last fifteen seasons? Well, I can't blame you for that. It has been a real shit-fest in La Belle Provence lately, and celebrators of this birthday have done a fantastic job at neglecting this.

During this fifteen year collection of mediocre hockey, Montreal has missed the playoffs six times (seven if you include last year... I'm not sure who those fellers were that wore Canadiens jerseys against Boston in the Quarterfinals), but of their nine playoff appearances they were eliminated in the first round six times. They haven't made it through the semi-finals since 1993 and look to continue their sub-par play through this season as well, currently holding an 11-11-1 record and want to continue trading away mildly consistant players for potential draft busts. In fact, things have gotten s'ordinary around town that rumours are as hopeful and ridiculous as ever.

With the 2009 Montreal Canadiens battling through injuries upon injuries (What, you didn't think that there would be some boo-boos to go around on a team with an average player build of around 5'2'' and 143 pounds? Shame on you!), it looks like we can continue to focus on all of the success that this team used to have, and the great players that used to grace their sheet of cold water. I'm sure that this will keep Bob Gainey from losing his job and random sedans from getting torched. You people are really desperate for something to cheer about, aren't you? Well, just be appreciative that you don't live in Buffalo.

Who would be on my Habs all-time team? Let's see if I can put one together from the last fifteen years instead.

C - Vincent Damphousse
W - Mark Recchi
W - Alex Koval...zzzzzz
D - Sheldon Souray
D - Andrei Markov
G - Olivier Michaud

Make sure you remember to pick up your jaws from off of the floor before you leave. I know you're impressed.

Now if you'll excuse me, I feel like ordering some Hockeytown tapes and eating gelato until I keel over from depression. My poor Detroit Red Wings! They could miss the playoffs! My life is over!....... /dead

Sunday, November 22, 2009


I've got a couple of bones to (nit)pick with Sean Leahy's 3 stars of the night for 11/22. A light plate no doubt and I don't disagree with his selections. It's the detail he goes into and the fact that this blog has been inactive for a while now, so on guard for barely deserved criticism!

No. 1 star: Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning

The 2008 No. 1 overall pick continued his breakout year as his 15th goal of the season in overtime gave the Lightning a 4-3 win over the Atlanta Thrashers. Currently tied for fourth in the NHL in goals scored with Jarome Iginla, Stamkos, along with Ryan Malone, is carrying the Lightning offensive load as Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis struggle with a combined nine goals.

Not quite sure I'd call on pace for 100+ points a "struggle". I know what he meant, that St. Louis isn't scoring goals, but the dude's on pace for 71 assists. And ya know, I can live with him saying St. Louis is struggling to score if it weren't for...

Honorable mention: Martin St. Louis had three assists including one on Stamkos' overtime winner ...

You really couldn't contradict yourself any harder. If the dude is dishing the King Don, you don't need to put it in the net. Plus, Marty has never really been a HUGE goal scorer. He had that 43-goal '07, and is generally near 30. Obviously, his pace is below his mean, but he's playing a ton with Ryan Malone who eats goals for breakfast and only gets assists when he shits out a goal and someone else shovels it in the net. If anything, it seems like St. Louie! St. Louie! has adapted his game to adjust to his linemates and is hardly struggling.

No. 2 Star: Antti Niemi, Chicago Blackhawks

The 26-year old Finn backstopped the 'Hawks to a 1-0 win in Vancouver by making 30 saves for his second shutout of the season. Chicago swept the Western Canadian portion of their roadtrip and will finish things up with three games in California beginning Wednesday at Anaheim. With the win, Niemi improves to 4-1-1 on the season.

Well done, young man.

Honorable Mention...Roberto Luongo did all he could for the Canucks making 16 saves, but was let down by his offense ...

So which one is it? Did Niemi earn the 2nd star or was Vancouver's offense pathetic? No room for luck here. Plenty of room for what the hell actually happened.

No. 3 Star: Antero Niittymaki, Tampa Bay Lightning

Making 28 saves on the evening, Niittymaki won his sixth game of the season and his 15th straight over a Southeast Division opponent. Atlanta rallied back with three goals in the third period, but was unable to record a shot in overtime before Stamkos won it. Niittymaki currently owns the NHL's best save-percentage at .936.

With his win against Atlanta, Niittymaki is now 15-0-0 against the Thrashers in his career. (AP)

"With his win"....ugh. But anyway, it's Atlanta, they suck. Admittedly, 15-0-0 is impressive. According to Yahoo's Game Log for Shiittymaki, he's only played Atlanta 14 times. His team is averaging exactly 4 goals per game in those 14 contests, so it's not like he's had to stand on his head. He's 1.92/.935 career vs. the Trashers, but I'm talking about 14 games (clearly they are talking about some other 15th game where, undoubtedly, Anterro was 90/90 in three overtimes in the playoffs).

You know what happens in a short amount of time? This guy goes on a Hard-Lessons-set-length shutout streak and this guy wins a Vezina.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Go away, Detroit Red Wings! Please!

Everyone is sick of the Detroit Red Wings, even their family. Trust me, I asked every family member. They ask the same question that I do: Will you please stop being elite and downgrade to just being "decent", or God forbid, "slightly above average"?

I was just reading puck daddy's ten biggest hockey upsets of the last decade, and the wonderful Detroit Red Wings are featured on this list four times. Four times! Four of the ten biggest upsets in the last decade were against Detroit(and three of them weren't even NHL upsets, so really they're responsible for four of the top seven NHL upsets). So what do we learn from this? If the Wings don't make it to the Stanley Cup Finals, it's one of the biggest upsets of the decade. In fact, with the exception of 2007(and 2005), every year has finished this way for the Wings since 2001. Please stop. It's not fun anymore. You've won the Presidents' trophy four times this decade, and you were a tiebreaker away in 2007. Enough is enough.

I thought this season would be a little bit different with the departures of key players Marian Hossa, Mikael Samuelsson, Jiri Hudler, Ty Conklin, and Tomas Kopecky(lol!!!!!!!!!!). My hope was even reinforced on October 10th when I heard the fantastic news that my twin brother Johan Franzen would be out four months with a torn knee ligament. Adding this news to the sluggish way they started the season, I was beginning to get high hopes about the way this year would finish. Well, a few weeks have gone by, and now the Wings are one of the hottest teams in the league, going 7-2-1 in their last ten games. They always have somebody stepping up, whether it's Zetterberg's 13 points and 44 minutes of puck hogging at Allen Park's rink, or it's Kronwall's 9 points, 15 hits and 12 "moneyshots" during the ten game span.

There's still hope this year for their streak of 8 consecutive central division titles to end, thanks to an improved Central Division and a powerful Chicago Blackhawks team, but I'm willing to bet we'll be witnessing more of the same come April. I just hope I'll be seeing another one of the top 10,000 upsets of all time instead of another lengthy playoff run for Detroit's finest.

Monday, November 9, 2009

No, kid, you're on the Leafs Part II: No dude, you're on the Panthers.

32 year-old Scott Clemmensen headed down the Atlantic coast over the summer. And now he's paying the price.

Panthers goalie Scott Clemmensen says he's had to operate in survival mode with "total chaos" in front of him for the four games he's played with his new team.

Maybe Scottie boy didn't know what he was getting into. This is the Florida Panthers. They were DFL in 08-09 in shots against with 2832 (Drylanders 2nd with 2743). Losing your best defens(c)eman in the offseason isn't going to help that.

Coach Pete DeBoer's response Sunday: "I understand where a goaltender who has let in [12] goals in his last two starts would be frustrated, but it's misdirected.

"When things aren't going well, I think it's important we all self-reflect and see what we can do better in order to help the situation. I don't think finger-pointing is real productive at this point."

P-Dubs is just being the middle man here: the players' coach, if you will. They've got a young d-man logging good minutes (Kulikov) and no one has figured out what Bryan Allen has been thinking for 7 years now. DeBoer is giving some benefit of the doubt to the Young & the Clueless.

"I'm not sure how it gets so bad at times. It's just a matter of knowing your responsibilities," [Clemmensen] said. "We've got to work on things in practice. Unless we do that, so guys know what they're doing, then we're not going to get any better at it.

"I'd like to see us really hammer out some details, so everyone's on the same page. Forget about tonight, leading up to tonight even, we're not there yet as far as taking care of our own end."

Coach Clemmensen is pin-setting his whole team so it'll be quick and easy for the bus he's throwing them under to knock 'em all down, unassisted.

DeBoer countered Clemmensen's claim.

"Our defense has improved steadily from Day 1 of the season. As a group, we've worked awful hard at that," DeBoer said. "This is the same team that has two shutouts [with Tomas Vokoun in goal] in its last four games. The chances we gave up last night in Washington weren't any more or less than what's been going on for the last few games. I guess I don't agree with [Clemmensen's] assessment."

See Scotty too Hottie? The problem is you aren't Tomas Vokoun. He saw all kinds of great opportunities and he didn't have a problem. It's not like he's really awesome and totally underrated or anything.

"I'm still learning how to play for this team. It's very different from what I'm used to in the past with New Jersey," Clemmensen said. "I haven't been able to get set and concentrate on one shot at a time. It's been so scrambled that, for me, the four games I've gotten in so far, have just been surviving. And you can't play that way in this league. I'm still learning how to incorporate my game into this playing style we have."

I like to imagine he said "this playing style we have" in the most sarcastic, bitter tone. Almost to say "we are going to suck when I'm in goal." Look dude, you're on Florida. It's like a shooting gallery on ice. I'm not sure how you didn't know that going into the thing. Fire your agent, I guess. Maybe he told you it was a piece of cake so he could visit the greater Sunrise/Miami area more often. I don't know for sure.

What I do know is that 5 of your top six d-men are all cast offs from other teams: McCabe, Siedenberg, Allen, Ballard, Leopold. No one goes TO Florida to sign and play unless you're approaching the grave or you were brought up in the system.

Good luck being a shooter tutor and far-inferior back up, Mr. Clemmensen.

Another solid game from Mr. Ovechkin.

Once again, Alexander Ovechkin topped the scoresheet on Saturday, something we've been getting used to since his NHL debut four seasons ago. Starting the game off well, he set up Brooks Laich just 2:17 into the first period for the first goal of the game, as the Caps took advantage of a questionable hooking call on Rostislav Olesz. Shortly thereafter, he netted a goal of his own with the man advantage, as the Capitals enjoyed success three times on the power play throughout the game. He wasn't done though, as he finished off the game with an overtime winner for his third consecutive three-point outing.

Just kidding, he's still injured.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Dennis Maruk, Everyone.

This is Dennis "the man" Maruk. I think he was friends with Pavol Demitra in cell block six.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Since it's been a while...

I'm going to have some fun at Damien Cox's expense.

Here is a paragraph from a relatively mundane article about how the Leafs are losing in OT and how they could like go 19-7-56 and make the playoffs.

But since we haven't posted anything of substance in a while and I don't feel like scouring the w wide w, I'll go ahead and rip this factually bankrupt paragraph sentence by sentence.

In Jonas Gustavsson, the club may have a bona fide No.1 goalie.

He must mean they are going to drag the number 1 down from the rafters and let the Monster wear it, because 3.22/.890 was good enough for a bona fide #1 about 20 years ago.

Although the numbers might not say so, Mike Komisarek played his best game of the season against the Habs.

Although the numbers might not say so, eating your own poop is better than starving to death.

Ian White is again proving smarts and talent may overcome size.

And that smarts and talent won't distract you from a moustache.

Mikhail Grabovski is showing vastly improved hustle and hunger these days.

Mikhail Grabovski: Damien Cox's winner of choice at the 2010 Nathan's Hot Dog Eating contest.

Seriously, how do you judge that? Hunger. Look in his eyes?

What makes a lot more sense is mentioning Grabovski's improved face off % against Montreal. He was 35% going into Saturday and kicked some faceoff circle ass. Wilson was using him late in the game in both zones. Say something like that, don't tell me he's showing more hunger.