Saturday, September 29, 2007


This kid never ceases to crack me up.

Well folks, the day is finally here. It's the Zero Hour. At high noon on the eastern seaboard, the 2007-08 season kicks off... in England. I wasn't really sure if this day would ever come. It really seems like the playoffs ended about 10 years ago and we were going to stay in summer mode forever. Nonetheless, here we are. Here we are indeed.

Don't do anything too crazy today, folks. Go about your daily lives... relax... and ENJOY SOME HOCKEY!!!



Ahem... Er... Sorry. I'm pretty excited. It's a good day. Now if only the Islanders started their season today... Ah, well. Can't have everything.

2007-08 Preseason Foreplay: Anaheim Ducks

Oh shit! This thing is a lot heavier than it looks!
John Griffiths on Flickr

Quick hits

Odds for the folks at gambler's

62 to 1: During today's season opener, bands of hockey hooligans start riots outside the arena in London.

3 to 1: You can't find an English speaking population that pays less attention to hockey than the Brits.

Obligatory serious analysis

Chances are the Ducks aren't ready to begin another hockey season just yet. After all, who wouldn't want to bask in a Stanley Cup victory for as long as possible? I know I would. The Ducks that suit up in London later today are going to be a much different team than the one we last saw in Game Five during the spring. Scott Niedermayer and Teemu Selanne are still considering retirement, and won't be in the lineup (as far as I know). Dustin Penner is gone, but his shoes are to be filled by Todd Bertuzzi. The Ducks did add a nice insurance package to their blue line in Mathieu Schneider, but he's hurt right now. There a ton of question marks surrounding this team right now, and none of them have easy answers.

One of the most disheartening things, if you're a Ducks fan, is how many players are going to miss the opening weekend with the team in London. Battle of California has a list of six, which doesn't include the recently injured Schneider. All too important and man who will surely be missed is Senators defender Chris Phillips, who will not be with the Ducks to start the season.

Seriously, this team is an enigma right now. At least to me. Injuries are a problem, and couple that with two star players still unsure about their playing future, and it makes for a dicey situation. If both Selanne and Niedermayer come back, this team has got to be among the favorites to win the Cup again this year. If they leave and any of Schneider/Pahlsson/Giguere miss a considerable amount of time due to injury, then this team will surely not win the Pacific. My bet? Selanne and Niedermayer are waiting for the games in London to pass to make a decision, and I'm going to be that at least one of them comes back. If they wanted to be away from the game that badly, they would have done it already.

It's going to be hard for the Ducks to repeat. I believe the season is simply too long, the West is too tough and this team is going to be too banged up. They should make the post-season easily, but they won't take home the Pacific Division crown. I figure they'll settle in to the 5th or 6th spot out West.

The best looking ice girls in Anaheim
The Ducks have a "street team" but I have no idea if these ladies are a part of it. Try not to lose sleep worry about that, OK?

Previous Editions of Preseason Foreplay

Friday, September 28, 2007

Your Obligatory Ultra Super Spectacular Pre-Season Speculation Post (Part II)

Western Conference

Possible point totals are in parentheses. No scientific calculations involved, simply a ballpark figure.

“The Haves”

1. *Detroit Red Wings (116) – There’s no doubt that they’re going to win the central, but the conference title will be tricky. Nonetheless, I’m picking them.

2. *San Jose Sharks (109) – The Pacific is going to be a tough fight, just like the Atlantic. A short off-season for the Ducks and no improvement from the Stars paves the way for the Sharks. Their young players should be a big part of the team’s success.

3. *Colorado Avalance (104) – This division is going to be a tough win as well, but I believe that the Avs summer signings will pay off along with the development of Stastny, and Wolski.

4. Dallas Stars (106) – The Stars are going to be icing a similar team to the 2006-07 edition, and I believe they’ll achieve about the same.

5. Minnesota Wild (103) – Just like Dallas, I don’t expect the Wild to be any worse than they were last year. I don’t expect them to be much better, either. This will be a down-to-the-wire divisional race for sure.

6. Anaheim Ducks (102) – The Ducks are good, but Scott Niedermayer’s shenanigans, injuries to Schneider and Giguere, and a short off season are all causes for concern. I can’t imagine them having the legs down the stretch.

7. Vancouver Canucks (99) – The Canucks didn’t improve, and will be looking to Luongo to carry the defense yet again. Injuries are already mounting, which is scary when it’s still September. Don’t count them out of the divisional race yet, but it’s very hard to believe they can beat out both Colorado and Minnesota.

The Middle Ground

8. St. Louis Blues (94) – The Blues are my surprise team this year, but I don’t think anyone is going to be overlooking them this season. The team has turned things around nicely and despite his age, Paul Kariya is going to be a huge help.

9. Calgary Flames (92) – The Flames defensive carousel is worrisome, and Keenan isn’t going to help things. For their sake, I hope someone explains to him that Kipper is, in fact, a number one ‘tender. Don't count the Flames out of the playoff picture, but it's going to be a close race again this season.

“The Havenots”

10. Los Angeles Kings (84) – The Kings had some quiet but very nice summer signings, but they’re going to have to find a goaltender at some point. This team will be better, but the West is still way too competitive for them.

11. Nashville Predators (82) – I firmly believe the Preds are going to be a shell of their former selves. Chris Mason may be completely capable of being a starter, but he’s not going to have any help from his defenders or forwards. Timonen, Hartnell, Kariya, Vishnevski, Forsberg (presumably) and Vokoun are all gone. Did I miss anyone?

12. Chicago Blackhawks (76) – Things are looking up in the Windy City, and Robert Lang and Patrick Kane are going to help. Problem is; that’s not nearly enough.

13. Columbus Blue Jackets (70) – Mike Peca is the big news in Columbus. That’s a bad sign. I believe in Ken Hitchcock. Really, I do. The West is too tough and the Blue Jackets don’t have good enough pieces. That being said, their division will be lacking another +100 point team to go with the Red Wings, so the central may balance out a little more than I am accounting for here.

14. Edmonton Oilers (66) – Sorry, Alberta. It’s going to be a long winter. How’s next year’s draft class looking?

15. Phoenix Coyotes (64) – This is a team whose prize summer signing was Mike York. I’ll believe anything other than a last place finish when I see it, Kyle Turris or not.

*-Division Champs

Eastern Conference Predictions

Counting Down to Opening Night: Tomorrow... is back, with a British flavor.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Coach Incompetence Advisory System: Pre-Season Edition

Here at Barry Melrose Rocks, it's all about you, the reader. If you're happy, then I'm happy. It's really that simple. Come on! Group hug!

OK... Anyway... To keep you safe -- so that you can enjoy said happiness, of course -- I am proud to introduce to you the NHL Coach Incompetence Advisory System. It will serve to warn you about and help protect you from incompetence behind the bench of your favorite NHL team. Not only that, but it will also be a fun way to discuss who is going to win this year's Pink Slip Award for being the first coach fired during the 2007-08 season.

As you already know, NHL front offices have the quickest trigger fingers this side of the National Rifle Association, at least when it comes to firing head coaches. In fact, in many places (I'm looking at you New Jersey) it's a significant rite of passage to complete a single season behind an NHL bench. As NHL coaches know all too well, 82 games behind the bench and a division title one year is no guarantee that you will have a job the next year.

In an attempt to make you feel safer and more secure as you go about your daily life and while you are attending hockey games this winter, I'm proud to present to you the NHL Coach Incompetence Advisory System. Nation, as coach firing season approaches us yet again, we must be vigilant! This is no time for complacency or indifference. Now, more than ever, we must be aware of which NHL coaches are on the hot seat. Our national security depends on it! To terrify inform you, I have devised a color-coded system which will help guide you in this time of need. Here's the breakdown:

Threat Level: Lamoriello

Firing is imminent. Coaches that are noted as being on the "Lamoriello" threat level pose a serious threat to their team as well as national security, and will likely be fired soon regardless of their past successes with the club and their team's current position in the standings. At a heightened state of "Lamoriello", no coach is safe.

Threat Level: Keenan

The firing of a coach ranked at a "Keenan" threat level is very likely. These coaches will last longer than "Lamoriello" ranked coaches, but make no mistake about it, they are still very dangerous. "Keenan" coaches are cunning during the interview process, but that is where their wits end. Fans and front office personnel alike are quick to catch on to their schemes, and tire of their shenanigans easily. When a coach reaches the heightened state of a "Keenan" threat level, they will likely need only one slip up or losing streak to get bounced.

Threat Level: Lewis

Coaches in the "Lewis" threat level may be there for a variety of reasons. For one, they may be there simply because their hiring in the first place was mind numbing, and even before the season began the fan base was upset. Additionally, they could be coaches who are good at what they do, but have fallen on a streak of bad luck. The bad luck can be due to a number of factors including; massive team injuries, a long losing streak to begin a season, general unrest surrounding the team that has lingered for years due to a recent playoff drought (see: Toronto, Montreal).

Threat Level: Milbury

Those persons ranked in the "Milbury" threat level are the most cunning bench bosses, and therefore the most dangerous. They may be ranked here simply because they are a good coach who has not been given a deserved contract extension or, more likely, they are a coach who has tricked upper management into thinking that they are a good coach. In the case of the latter, the fan base can see right through the bull shit that the coach is throwing, but is absolutely helpless against it. The fan base can only live with the blindness of upper management, and can only hope that the franchise survives the coach's hapless tenure in one piece.

Threat Level: Bowman

This threat level is a simple one; there should be no questioning of coaches ranked here. They are good at what they do and are potentially legendary. Leave them alone so they can do their job and lead the team to glory.

Throughout the year, I'll keep you updated as coaches move up and down the NCIAS. Even though it's very early in the year, there is still the threat of a coach firing in the NHL. We must be prepared! To get you ready for the regular season, here are a few coaches who are beginning the season on the hot seat (in no specific order).

Coach: Paul Maurice

Team: Toronto Maple Leafs

Threat Level: Lewis

Prior to Pat Quinn's tenure, the Leafs had a nasty habit of firing coaches after only a year or two at the helm. Maurice's Leafs missed the playoffs by the skin of their teeth last season to, of all teams, the Islanders and that wound is still stinging. Some salt was poured on the wound after the Senators made a spectacular run to the playoffs last spring. Additionally, the Toronto media will likely eat up the team if they start poorly, after acquiring Jason Blake and Vesa Toskala. This team should surely be better than the 2006-07 edition, and if they falter in the first half and find themselves on the outside of the playoff picture, prepare for a shake up. For the moment, Maurice's job is more than safe.

Coach: Brent Sutter

Team: New Jersey Devils

Threat Level: Lewis

The situation in New Jersey will be an interesting one to watch. This team will not challenge for the Atlantic division title, but should easily find themselves in the playoff hunt. Much like the Leafs, if the team falters there could be turnover. I know it's Brent Sutter's first season behind the bench, but remember, Lou Lamoriello is in charge.

Coach: Mike Keenan

Team: Calgary Flames

Threat Level: Keenan

I shouldn't have to explain this one.

Coach: Wayne Gretzky

Team: Phoenix Coyotes

Threat Level: Lewis

This is the Great One's third season behind the bench in Phoenix, and the team has averaged only 74 points per season during the first two years. It's going to be a tall order to fire the greatest player to ever play the game of hockey, but if the 'Yotes find themselves in the cellar this spring, some one is going to have to take the fall.

Counting Down to Opening Night: In 2 Days... can go home again. Wherever that home may be.

Your Obligatory Ultra Super Spectacular Pre-Season Speculation Post (Part I)

Tabloids say the darndest things.

You knew it had to come to this eventually. Every Tanguay, Drury and Havlat in the world has made their pre-season predictions, and I might as well throw my hat in the ring, too. I’m more or less obligated to do it.

Obligated or not, I’m always more than happy to make predictions, if only for the sole purpose of your amusement. Today I present to you, dear reader, Your Obligatory Ultra Super Spectacular Pre-Season Speculation Post. The rejected and more descriptive version of that title was simply Kevin Makes Predictions so You Know Who Not to Bet on, but that didn’t have as nice a ring to it. Today I'll start with the Eastern Conference, and work my way over to the West tomorrow.

Enough of the Obligatory Lead In, you know how this goes. Teams. Predictions. Snark. Let’s get to it!

Eastern Conference

Possible point totals are in parentheses. No scientific calculations involved, simply a ballpark figure.

(The elite 3 ½)

1. *Ottawa Senators (115) – This team is primed and ready to make another run. Buffalo is out of the way, so the Sens should cruise to the Northeast title.

2. *Pittsburgh Penguins (109) – I’m convinced Sykora, Sydor and another year of development for the kids will put them over the top. Don’t rule out the Rangers as Atlantic champs, though.

3. *Atlanta Thrashers (95) – A lot of people are selling the Thrashers, but this is a wide open division, so a title for the Thrashers is not out of the question.

4. New York Rangers (106) – It pains me to say so, but these guys are going to be good. Pittsburgh is going to have a hell of a time holding them off.

The cluttered middle ground

5. New Jersey Devils (93) – I have a hard time finding any team to put in the fifth spot. The Devils are here because they always seem to find a way to get the job done. With Lou and Sutter at the helm, this team is going to find a way to succeed.

6. Buffalo Sabres (93) – It’s going to be a down year, but the Sabres are still better than a lot of teams in the East.

7. Montreal Canadiens (92) – ‘Gloom and doom’ is the story in Montreal, but I’m not buying.

8. Tampa Bay Lightning (91) – I’m having a hard time placing this team ahead of the two behind it, but four Atlantic teams will not make the playoffs. The Bolts’ defense is going to hold them back an awful lot, but they’re still a solid team.

9. Philadelphia Flyers (90) – Lupul or not, this team is going to be solid. There’s no doubt about it. I’m sure you disagree.

10. Toronto Maple Leafs (90) – It’s a tough sell but the additions of Toskala and Blake should put this team in the playoff hunt. I want to put this team higher. Really, I do. Problem is there’s too much clutter for them to compete with.

Close, but no cigar

11. Washington Capitals (87) – I like the Caps and the additions they made this off-season. Their problem is that the rest of the conference improved, too.

12. Carolina Hurricanes (81) – New season, same Hurricanes.

13. Florida Panthers (80) – A lot of people like the Panthers this year. I, for one, don’t. It’s going to be the same old story in Florida.

The trash heap

14. New York Islanders (74) – You certainly can’t accuse me of being a homer. No team can lose all the pieces that the Islanders did and still make the playoffs, even if losing Yashin is addition by subtraction.

15. Boston Bruins (66) – The B’s might be the only team in the East who hasn’t improved significantly. I’m not buying Manny Fernandez. Enjoy that lottery pick.

*-Division Champs

Tune in tomorrow for the Western Conference!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

2007-08 Preseason Foreplay: Carolina Hurricanes

I'm not entirely sure what the link is between an Ice Hog and a Hurricane, but who am I to judge?
(C) Carolina Hurricanes
Quick hits
  • Eric Staal and his brother kindly reminded us this summer that hockey players can also get arrested.
  • Former Hurricanes net minder Martin Gerber cannot be stopped in his quest for Stanley Cup glory. Oh, he plays in Ottawa now? Oooh. Sorry, buddy.
  • A question posted to Storm Squad member Kerry on the Hurricanes' official website: "What nursery rhyme would you turn into a new rap song? I don't "do" rap."
  • The Hurricanes won't win the division this year. Why? Because they've won the southeast three times, with two years in between each victory. This would be the third season since their last title. I know, it's so logical.
  • When both the Oilers and Hurricanes failed to make the playoffs last season, it was the first time in NHL history that both Stanley Cup Finalists failed to qualify for the post season.

Odds for the folks at gambler's

12 to 1: Someone will make a NASCAR reference in the comments.

6 to 1: Someone will get mad that someone else made a NASCAR reference in the comments because sweeping generalizations don't heal; they hurt.

Obligatory serious analysis

The Hurricanes did last season what no team had done since the 1938-39 Chicago Blackhawks; miss the playoffs after winning the Stanley Cup in the previous season. Looking to turn things around this season, the Hurricanes will ice essentially the same squad that they did in 2006-07. The lone notable addition is center Matt Cullen, who was a part of Carolina's Stanley Cup victory two years ago. Last season, Cullen had 41 points in 80 games for the New York Rangers. Cullen should be a welcome addition to the East's 7th best offense.

The real key for the Hurricanes this season will be to have many of their younger players prove that their production two years ago was not a fluke. This season, Eric Staal produced 70 points, a full 30 point drop off from his numbers during the team's Cup run. Cam Ward's mind boggling 2.14 GAA and .920 save percentage from the '05-'06 playoffs were nowhere near his numbers last season, after the team decided to dump Martin Gerber and entrust the net to Ward. Ward is going to have to show the world that he won't be remembered for one spectacular playoff run.

Possibly the most serious issue facing the 'Canes this season is their defense. As a team they finished 20th in the NHL in goals allowed last season, and are playing in the high scoring Eastern Conference. The Canes are going to have to find some kids to man the point sometime, as Glen Wesley, Bret Hedican and Frantisek Kaberle are a combined 800 years old.

The Hurricanes have a lot to prove and aren't drastically improved from the team that they iced last season. Cullen is a nice addition, but not enough to put them over the top. I think that they will find themselves in the 9th spot at the end of the year.

The best looking ice girls in Carolina
The Hurricanes have a Storm Squad, and this is the best I can do. Sorry.

Previous Editions of Preseason Foreplay

Required Reading for Sept. 26th: Hawks Un-Eliminated from Playoffs

Who wants to reminisce about shitty hockey cards?

Lots to talk about in the hockey world today, so listen up class. The gist of it is really only mindless violence and death, which is depressing. Those are the reasons why I stopped watching the local news. Good thing hockey was built on mindless violence though. Due to that, I don't think I'll be walking away from the sport anytime soon.

The Zombie Invasion has Begun

Counting Down to Opening Night: In 3 Days...

...the goalie fights count for real.

Thanks to all who sent in links!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Roberto Luongo Wants No Part of Your Ill-Conceived Attempts to Increase Scoring

This net is black not!
Getty Images

To many the chagrin of many fans, or possibly only me, the NHL has bandied about the idea of using bigger nets in an attempt to increase scoring. Honestly, they might as well eliminate the position of 'goaltender' all together, because it seems that's the kind of scoring it will take to get them to find a happy level of offensive output, but I digress.

Whatever the NHL plans to do, All-Star and potential future Hall of Fame goaltender Roberto Luongo plans to have nothing to do with an increase in the size of the nets.

In a conference call Tuesday, Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo said he would retire if the league used bigger nets.

"If that day comes, I don't think you guys will be seeing me in the NHL," Luongo said.

Luongo said he would retire, even if the league made the nets bigger by just a few inches.

"I have no intentions of playing with bigger nets," Luongo said.

In my opinion, it's about time someone told the league to shove it where the sun doesn't shine. If we make the nets bigger, it's likely that scoring won't reach the levels it was at in the 1980s. If that's the case, I have a hard time believing that the NHL's Powers That Be would stop there. At some point you're going to have to accept yourself for what you are and live life to the best of your ability. You can only have so much plastic surgery before you look ridiculously fake, and you can only try so many avenues to increase scoring before it's not the NHL we know and love anymore.

2007-08 Preseason Foreplay: Detroit Red Wings

Editor's Note: Today's foreplay is brought you by reader and Red Wings fan Derek C.

...and that's what interns are for.
Quick hits
Odds for the folks at gambler's anonymous

3990:1 – Wings will sign Foppa.

17:1 – Wings will discontinue use of the funny-looking preseason name patches.

3:1 – Jimmy Howard will take Chris Osgood’s backup goaltender position by the end of the season.

2:1 – Red Wings will trade an early round draft pick for a veteran center or defenseman by the trade deadline.

Obligatory serious analysis

The Central Division is Detroit’s to lose. After falling two wins short of a Stanley Cup Finals berth last season, Detroit returns with a roster similar to the one of last Spring. The most obvious change will be addition of free agent (and Detroit-area native) Brian Rafalski (for five years at $30 million). Rafalski will take over Matty Schneider’s first line spot with Niklas Lidstrom.

Up front, the Red Wings are led by Zetterberg and Datsyuk, who are both expected to put up 90-100 point seasons. Jiri Hudler should emerge as a second line center and likely will see the largest increase in point production from 06-07. Detroit added Dallas Drake for some added grit. As long as he stays healthy, his true value will emerge in the final months of the season.

Igor Grigorenko failed to crack the Wings lineup but will remain stateside and play for the Griffins in Grand Rapids. However, other young players will remain with Detroit and will be relied on for consistent play if Detroit is to walk away with the division. Including Hudler, the Wings need Franzen, Tomas Kopecky and Valteri Filpulla to continue to develop.

Dominik Hasek returns between the pipes but with his playing days limited, Chris Osgood will see a large share of backup duty. If he struggles, Wings fans will press for Jimmy Howard to emerge as the Wing’s goalie of the future as he has done this preseason. Howard has worked hard with Wings goaltending coach Jim Bedard and lost 20 lbs in the off-season. If Howard doesn’t become a mainstay this season, with Osgood in the final year of his deal, expect to see him regularly in 2008-09.

Detroit will win the Central easily, and challenge for the Western Conference Title and President’s Trophy. By March, Detroiters should have only Octopi-related thoughts on their minds. (Ed. -- agreed)

The best looking ice girls in Detroit
(Ed. -- Today's is actress Kristen Bell, who grew up near Detroit)

Previous Editions of Preseason Foreplay

2007-08 Preseason Foreplay: Vancouver Canucks

Is there really anything more frightening than an orca with a bazooka?
Quick hits
  • The 'Nucks have some interesting looking new jerseys... and math is always fun. Maybe. Not really.
  • Vancouver has won the Northwest Division two of the past three seasons, their only two Northwest titles.
  • The 49 wins and 105 points that the team recorded last season were both franchise records.
  • Trevor Linden and captain Markus Naslund are first and second on the franchise's all-time scoring list.
Odds for the folks at gambler's anonymous

28 to 1: Due to massive amounts of player injuries, the Canucks will be forced to call up the entire roster of the Manitoba Moose, their AHL affiliate.

Over/under on how many times Roberto Luongo singlehandedly wins a game for the Canucks: 23.

Obligatory serious analysis

The Vancouver Canucks are coming off statistically their best season in team history, which saw them take home the Northwest Division title before losing in the second round of the playoffs to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks. The team also gave up the fourth fewest amount of goals in the Western Conference, in large part due to netminder Roberto Luongo. Luongo posted a 2.28 GAA, surprisingly the best mark of his career. His .921 save percentage was the 2nd best in his career, and the highest by any goalie in Vancouver team history. Obviously, the ability of the man between the pipes is not going to be an issue for the Canucks.

What will be an issue for this team is their offense. They are returning the 21st best offense in the NHL, and have not added much talent to it. After much ado, the team finally re-signed fan favorite Trevor Linden, but that's about where the offensive acquisitions end. Byron Ritchie and Ryan Shannon have been added to the roster, but they combined for 25 points last season. The only other acquisition for the forward corps is Brad Isbister, and that's really not even worth mentioning. That is going to be the most pressing question for the Canucks to answer this season (outside of the team's obvious health issues); how can you produce more goals with the same players?

As Luongo goes, so goes the Canucks. It's really that simple. The Canucks will have a tough time winning the division, as they did last season. With the Minnesota Wild on the way up and, as I believe, a much improved Avalanche squad on their heels, the Canucks won't be able to repeat as division champs. They will find a way in the playoffs, though. I would imagine at about the 6th spot.

The best looking ice girls in Vancouver
The Canucks do have an ice team, which does have some female members, but I have yet to find any decent pictures. Therefore, we are left with only Pamela Anderson, who was born in Ladysmith, British Columbia. What a shame.

Previous Editions of Preseason Foreplay

Counting Down to Opening Night: In 4 Days... might do something that you will never live down. Be careful out there, folks.

On second thought, probably not the nicest picture to post... Apologies to anyone who was upset by it.

Monday, September 24, 2007

I Went to a Hockey Game, and the Movie 300 was Reenacted

Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Right now I'm hoping someone can find a link to the video, but the Islander/Ranger pre-season game tonight was an absolute bloodbath. If anyone had any doubts about how fierce this rivalry is, they are certainly gone now. Check out all the penalties handed out in this one...

Penalty Summary
1st Period
NY Rangers fighting - 5 min 3:08, C. Orr served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders fighting - 5 min 3:08, A. Sutton served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Islanders fighting - 5 min 3:11, K. Brennan served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers fighting - 5 min 3:11, C. Orr served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers roughing - 2 min 3:41, D. Byers served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders roughing - 2 min 3:41, C. Simon served by L. Aquino
NY Rangers roughing - 2 min 5:18, R. Hollweg served by A. Anisimov
2nd Period
NY Islanders high sticking - 2 min 2:21, C. Simon served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers fighting - 5 min 2:21, C. Orr served by R. Hollweg
NY Rangers fighting - 5 min 3:58, T. Pock served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders fighting - 5 min 4:20, A. Sutton served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers fighting - 5 min 4:20, B. Dubinsky served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders interference - 2 min 4:40, T. Hunter served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Islanders - 2 min 5:04, A. Johnson served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers goalie leaving crease - 2 min 8:11, A. Montoya served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers game misconduct - 10 min 8:11, J. Strudwick served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders fighting - 5 min 8:11, K. Brennan served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers fighting - 5 min 8:11, C. Orr served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers game misconduct - 10 min 8:11, C. Orr served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders goalie leaving crease - 2 min 8:11, R. DiPietro served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Islanders attempt to injure - 10 min 8:11, C. Simon served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers roughing - 2 min 8:11, J. Strudwick served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers charging - 2 min 8:11, R. Hollweg served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers game misconduct - 10 min 8:11, A. Montoya served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders game misconduct - 10 min 8:11, R. DiPietro served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Islanders game misconduct - 10 min 8:11, K. Brennan served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Islanders high sticking - 2 min 8:44, B. Guerin served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers charging - 2 min 8:44, R. Hollweg served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders holding - 2 min 12:20, F. Meyer served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers hooking - 2 min 13:42, A. Hutchinson served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders hooking - 2 min 16:28, S. Bergenheim served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers interference - 2 min 17:19, T. Pock served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers cross check - 2 min 18:08, A. Hutchinson served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers holding - 2 min 19:36, M. Malik served by A. Anisimov
3rd Period
NY Islanders tripping - 2 min 2:33, A. Hilbert served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers hooking - 2 min 4:13, D. Byers served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers slashing - 2 min 4:43, M. Rozsival served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders tripping - 2 min 5:11, M. Comrie served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers interference - 2 min 9:49, B. Shanahan served by A. Anisimov
NY Islanders cross check - 2 min 13:31, F. Meyer served by S. Ogordonikov
OT Period
NY Islanders roughing - 2 min 2:17, F. Meyer served by S. Ogordonikov
NY Rangers cross check - 2 min 2:42, B. Shanahan served by A. Anisimov
NY Rangers roughing - 2 min 2:42, B. Shanahan served by D. Byers

You want to know the best part? During that fight-filled second period, seven goals were scored. Now THAT is what I call hockey!

Again, if anyone can find a link to the video of any of this, you'll get some serious props... and one of those internet high fives.

Counting Down to Opening Night: In 5 Days...

...they're going to twist that knife that's been in your side since July 1st, and they're not going to stop.

Photo credit: Getty Images

H/t: Sabres Insider

Words of Wisdom from The Golden Brett

Hear that? One damage to target creature!! OMGz!!
MTG Lair

I, for one, thought that we may have heard the last of the interesting banter about Brett Hull when he left/was fired from NBC earlier in the summer and took a vaguely-titled upper management position with the Dallas Stars. If only I wasn't so pessimistic. Of course, Brett loves us and wants to give us something interesting to talk about -- before the season starts, no less.

Sunday's Dallas Morning News gives us a look into part of what Hull's new job entails; motivating 37-year old Mike Modano. It's just another side -- Hockey Life Coach -- we have yet to see from Hull, a jack of all trades.

Hull's biggest job as special advisor to the hockey operations department might be to keep Modano on task this season, to help the franchise leader in pretty much every department unleash a game tailored for today's NHL.

"I tell him to think about scoring goals," Hull said. "I told him with the rules changes [the crackdown on hooking and holding in 2005], he should be skating hard and going to the net. With his size and his speed, nobody should be able to stop him."

That's right Mike; score goals. The Stars are paying Hull... why?

This leads me to recollect other life changing advice from Brett Hull.

Well, that last one was made up. Anyway, it's good to have Brett back. He really helps liven up a boring weekend in the hockey world.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

In the Future, the Undead Will Wear Preds Jerseys

A promo photo from the new Resident Evil movie.
NHL Tournament of Logos

Even wonder what NHL team the undead would cheer for? I know I sure have. That internal conversation happens almost anytime I drive past a graveyard at night. Thank goodness for this photo, as I've finally got an answer to the question that has plagued me for years.

Yes, the undead are Nashville Predators fans. This season the Preds should be a shell of their former selves, just like the good folks in the picture to your right. Oh, sweet, sweet irony!

Not only that, but if you were living in fear that that the eventual post-apocalyptic world you or your children will surely live in would consist of the remnants of a dying human race that lives in fear of a rather large zombie epidemic, well, that world just got even scarier. Zombie Predator Fans. God help us. It's time we welcome our new Zombie Predator-Supporting Overlords before it's too late.

(h/t: NHL Tournament of Logos)