Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Tuesday's Hockey News

It's Tuesday and that means it's time yet again to take a look at the top stories around the hockey world.

Portland Beavers - Have had a wrongful termination lawsuit filed against them in Oregon State Supreme Court. On September 9th they fired their long time mascot Bucky the Beaver for an alleged improper relationship with a female intern. Bucky is suing on the grounds that he was only fired because the team's owner objects to inter-species relations and that there are no laws against Beaver-Human relations. The Beavers could not be reached for comment.

Dallas Stars - Announced plans to being filming an MTV reality show starring Brett Hull and Sean Avery.

Billington Buffalo - Their mascot, which is a live buffalo, was murdered last Sunday. The lead suspects in the investigation are a bunch of 1840s re-enactment people from the local historical village. Authorities think the re-enacters are drug addicts who have actually come to believe they are from the past. They may be armed with spears and are considered mildly dangerous.

Vancouver Canucks - Announced that they have named goaltender Roberto Luongo captain. And believe it or not, this is actually true.

Scott Parker Can Kill You With His Eyes

He's got an ice cold stare that could suck all the energy out of the sun. If, you know, he felt like doing that. It's good to see that Scott is still keeping up with the whole, "I could kill you but I want to see you squirm so I won't right this minute" look that he had last season. It really suits him well. He is complete with full arm tattoos, which only verify that he means business. And it's a lot of business that he means.

And I cannot get enough of these poker pictures. They are priceless.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Highlights of the Week: 9/22 - 9/28

Don't fret that there's a whole lot of text in front of you right now, we are still going to keep with the Monday morning video tradition here at BMR. The tradition is just going to change a little. Instead of your regularly scheduled Monday morning icebreaker, you can now enjoy a recap of the last week through YouTube videos.

From now on Mondays mean a look back at the best plays from the last week. During the regular season and throughout the playoffs, I'll be recapping the best videos from around the NHL during the last seven days. They might be fights, goals or hockey players posing as rockers. Anything, really.

To start us off this week, here is our old friend JR, who took the time to sit down with the local NBC station in the Bay Area.

5. JR Auditions for Television

4. Mikhail Grabovski splits the Pittsburgh D

Tuesday night, Toronto's Mikhail Grabovski scored a nifty goal on the Penguins. The Leafs ended up losing the game 3-2, but it is only the pre-season and the more important thing is obviously getting on this countdown.

3. Ryan Hollweg forgets how to use his fists

Two nights later the Penguins and Maple Leafs would do battle again, but pretty looking goals aren't the reason these teams are back-to-back on the countdown. It's really because Ryan Hollweg squared off with Paul Bissonnette and, in all seriousness, only threw a couple punches. That's game, set and match to Bissonnette.

2. Washington rocks out

There's not too much that can be said about this video which hasn't already been said by Greg Wyshynski. All I can think of is that the Capitals might regret doing this in a couple years. Or at least Ovechkin's hair.

1. Jon Mirasty vs. Chris Gratton

Do you like the kind of fights where no one tries to block a punch? You know, when both players just mercilessly wail on each other. If that's your cup of tea, then prepare to have these guys smash it in your face.

Your Obligatory Northeast Division Preview

Moving right along with our Obligatory Division Previews, today we're taking a look at the Northeast Division. Feel free to check out our previews of the Atlantic and Northwest if you missed those last week.

Boston Bruins

The Bruins lead off this preview, but that's only because they're at the top of the division alphabetically. It's also because I felt like talking about them first.

Stephen Colbert has long said that Bears are the #1 threat to America, and he may be right, but he certainly wasn't thinking of the Bruins when he said that. The Bruins will be solid this year, but they're certainly not going to raise the national security threat level. And as far as I know, there is no one on the team who has an infatuation with honey or is as cute as Winnie the Pooh. All factors that will not impact the team's on-ice performance this season.

The following are some factors that will impact their on-ice performance; the return of Patrice Bergeron, Marc Savard's ability to distract the defense with his good looks, Manny Fernandez's ability to tend nets and their only major move being the addition of Michael Ryder.

What's New: We already went over a bit of the new additions but to recap; Bergeron returns, Ryder signs as well as Stephane Yelle and another year for the kids to develop (see: Kessel, Krejci, Rask, Wheeler).

Questions That Need Answering: If bears grew a fifth appendage, would they be 20% more deadly? Is there anyway we can coat Phil Kessel in honey to see how good it would taste?

Montreal Canadiens

Hmm... Looks like one of the girls from Four Habs Fans found her way over here. I guess at this point no one is going to read the rest of the post. I could probably say a bunch of derogatory things towards Canada... Oh, hello! I didn't see you there. Heh... That was... Awkward.

So anyway, about the returning regular season conference champions. They were really one of the surprise teams of last season, but as the season progressed it became clear that they were the head of the class in the East. The team committed to the young stallion in the stable, Carey Price, when they sent Cristobal Huet packing at the deadline. With another year and a playoff run under his belt, Price should hopefully show improvement this year. As gifted as the rest of the team is, they're only going to go as far as Huet Price goes. Another point to watch is whether or not they can repeat as the best powerplay unit in the league. The Habs scored at a 24.1% clip last season, a very, very solid number.

What's New: Mark Streit, who was third on the team in points last season, has departed for Long Island. Michael Ryder and Bryan Smolinski (who I can't believe is still in the NHL -- he's almost 40) are also gone. Marc Denis, Robert Lang, Georges Laraque and Alex Tanguay are the notable additions.

Questions That Need Answering: Is Carey Price the real deal? Is Montreal as cool of a place to visit as Calgary (I'm thinking about going this winter)? How do you say 'really good hockey team' in French?

(C) GapingVoid.com

Toronto Maple Leafs

Ah yes, we're up to the Maple Leafs who are the butt of many jokes here and around the internets. No matter what we think, we still have to acknowledge that they do have the opportunity to win a Stanley Cup this year even if MLSE doesn't. Zing!

I'm sorry. Really. I do have to feel bad for a team that will probably be as bad as the Islanders will this season.

What's New: Curtis Joseph is back for another go-around, which is sort of surreal. Mike Van Ryn, Nick Hagman and Ryan Hollweg lead a star-studded class of additions to the roster. And don't forget about the big money guy, Jeff Finger! Ron Wilson picks up behind the bench and is probably going to be regretting the decision to do so by November. There are also the departures of Bryan McCabe, Mats Sundin, Kyle Wellwood and Darcy Tucker. It's the end of an era in Toronto, sort of. Except for the part where CuJo came back.

Questions That Need Answering: Is there anyone out there who legitimately believes this team has a chance? Can we all agree that this team is the New York Knicks of the NHL?

Buffalo Sabres

Where do we start with the Sabres? Things aren't looking so swell in Buffalo this winter. A year ago they finished 10th, only four points removed from the playoffs, and there's no doubt they could pull a similar feat this season. The health of the team will be a big factor in how far these guys go, as Tim Connolly and Drew Stafford missed serious time last year and are solid players. Derek Roy and Jason Pominville also had great years while filling the shoes of you know who. There's a lot of talent and a lot of depth on this team. The biggest knock, other than health, is probably that they are in a very strong division.

What's New: The only major addition is Craig Rivet on the blueline. Brian Campbell left at the deadline last season and his replacement, Steve Bernier, was sent to Vancouver during the summer.

Questions That Need Answering: This isn't a question, but Buffalo Wild Wings is an awesome restaurant. I just thought I would put that out there.

Ottawa Senators

The Senators had an epic collapse last year that was well-documented. They still made the playoffs, but their season had gotten to the point where it probably would have been better if they didn't make it. This will be one of the more interesting teams to watch this season. They still have the deadly trio of Alfredsson, Heatley and Spezza but how much everyone outside of those three contributes will be a big factor in how far this team goes. Another key is the play of Martin Gerber, who has failed out a couple times as a starter and is now getting another shot -- assuming he doesn't lose the job to Alex Auld. I guess never say never.

What's New: During the off-season the proverbial house was cleaned and a who slew of fresh faces were brought it. Jason Smith, Filip Kuba and Jarkko Ruutu are the notable additions to the roster along with the aforementioned Auld. Gone are a lot of people; Wade Redden, Ray Emery, Mike Commodore, Andrej Meszaros, Luke Richardson, Cory Stillman and Martin Lapointe.

Questions That Need Answering: Who can, and will, step up for this team? Can the new-look defensive corps hold steady? How many entertaining blowups will Bryan Murray have?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Joe Sakic: Future Hall of Famer or Down on His Luck Riverboat Gambler?

(Read in Sam Elliot's cowboy voice)

Somewhere in along the line, Ol' Joe got mixed up with some bad folks. It was never supposed to work out this way, but, well, life doesn't always go the way we would like it to.

You see, Joe used to be a mighty fine ice hockey player back in his hey day. Joe could skate, shoot 'n score with the best of them. Then one day the ol' body got a little too beaten up from all the years Joe had been banging it up and down the ice. It had enough and Joe decided that he had enough, too.

But that's where it all went downhill for Good Ol' Joe. See, Joe was the type who couldn't sit still. He always had to have his hands in something. That's probably part of the reason why he played hockey for as long as he did. It was his passion and it kept him occupied.

Pardon me for getting a bit off track there. The short version of the tale is that Ol' Joe got to befriending some shady folks. They weren't the best of folks, but they kept things interesting, and that was enough for Joe. He'd go out for a bit, have a good time, then come home and spend time with the Missus and the kids.

Well, one morning Joe woke up in a jail cell in some small little town along the Mississippi. Turns out that Joe had too much to drink, lost a lot of money on one of them riverboat casinos and started some trouble with some of those shady folks. Poor Joe. He's a good guy, just was a victim of circumstance. Now Joe's got to get home and try to explain to the Missus why he hasn't been home in two days and lost his paycheck. It's gut check time now, cowboy. Ol' Joe's got a mighty tough situation on his hands...

Friday, September 26, 2008

Oh, Those Crazy Watersliding Europeans

There's no better way to end the summer than with a giant water slide. What's even better is if you take skis, snowboards, inner tubes and whatever the hell else you can find, including European dance music and leather-clad girls. That, my friends, is a recipe for entertainment. If that's not what this recipe creates, then there might be something wrong with you.

The other day I stumbled upon the video accompanying this post. I'm not entirely sure what country this is in (Isn't all of Europe the same, anyway?) or why this is all going on, but I Babelfished the translation of the video's description, and it provides a little insight. Apparently, Anaheim's Jonas Hiller is going off the water slide somewhere in there with what is described as a "mad run". He wasn't actually mad, that's just what the kids are saying these days... Even the kids in Europe apparently.

For the second time the Alpamare accomplished the Waterslide Contest on Saturday. Over 100 participants the Contest supervisors counted in this year. Even NHL Stargoalie Jonas Hiller was also from the portion and submitted a mad run. Also olympia winners, European and Swiss masters were at the start and offered to the spectators a varied show on the eight meters high snow ramp.

And accomplish the water slide contest they did! That looked like a good time and has now been added as #478 on my list of reasons why I need to visit Europe.

Reader Commentary Theatre


Wow. RCT is right on schedule two weeks in a row. How about that? This calls for a celebration! I vote we all invite ourselves over to Ryan's house tonight. For those of you out in the Pacific time zone, invite yourself over to Earl Sleek's if you can't make the trek to Minnesota. I hear it's the only place in the country where it isn't going to rain anytime soon.

So without any further ado, here are your outstanding comments of the week.

I preranked and will be somewhere above the Atlantic while drafting. Hmm, being that high, maybe I should pick Theo Fleury? Ba-dum-dum-chhhh

- Scotty Hockey on Fantasy Hockey Update

"acquired the rights to a playoff birth"

So I am assuming they have Antropov knock up some chick and then trade her to the Penguins in April?

- BlackCapricorn on Wednesday's Hockey News

A Segway in Every house!

- Loser Domi on Am I Going Blind...

New to the site? Here's how this works. If you leave a comment that's funny, insightful or just plain genius, you'll see it in this spot every Friday.

Brett Hull and Sean Avery: A Recipe for Endless Fun

Disclaimer: Not as funny as the real thing.

I'm always honest with you guys. I admit it when I miss something, and let me tell you did I ever miss something!

It's really amazing that no one acknowledged all the ramifications of this until it was noticed by Puck Daddy and Andrew in Dallas.

Brett Hull. And Sean Avery. In the same organization.

Yeah. I don't know how it took me a few months to realize all the hilarity that may ensue, but hey, better late than never.

There are times when a meteor hits another large piece of space matter and that small section of the universe is thrust into utter chaos. Earth knows all about that, in fact. But those occurrences are rarer than someone actually enjoying a Natty Light. In conclusion, they are very rare, indeed.

We're a lucky bunch, though. We might have just stumbled upon a whole new meteor right before it smashes into a planet and bursts into flames. That's good for us because we'll get to see the galactic-sized train wreck that occurs. Oh, and it looks like the collision is starting to occur. Hull appeared on TSN's Off the Record and had the following to say about Avery.

While Avery - the league's biggest agitator - has no reservations when it comes to getting under an opponent's skin, his former roommate-turned boss has established a limit.

"Just one," Hull explained to TSN. "(I said) as long as you don't embarrass the organization, you can do, say or act any way you want."

And what about getting a stick up in a goaltender's face like he did last spring against Martin Brodeur? "(That's not acceptable) to me because that's not the way you play hockey," Hull told Off the Record. "Why would you want to do that? Why don't you want to get open and get a shot away? But that was before he was with me."

So here's to you, Brett and Sean (raises glass). May you provide us with endless entertainment throughout the regular season. And may Sean not quit his day job for a gig at Vogue Magazine.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Your Obligatory Northwest Division Preview

You better believe that I can write previews too. The Northwest is obviously the most important division in Canada, because really, what other Canadian teams are there? Montreal? Toronto? Please.
Calgary Flames

Make no mistake, the Flames revolve around Jarome Iginla. Just for fun, they hired a coach in Mike Keenan that scared off two of their leading scorers from last year in Kristian Huselius and Alex Tanguay. That being said, they are solid all the way around. It can't be ignored that they play in a building called the "Saddledome".

What's New: Scared off more graceful offensive players like Huselius and Tanguay and replaced them with dynamos like Todd Bertuzzi. Mike Cammalleri joins, perhaps bringing secrets to time travel.

Questions that need answering: Would you make fun of Dion Phaneuf's name if you met him in a dark alley? What did Mike Keenan have against Kristian Huselius, and, since he's following him around, does this mean that Keenan will soon be coaching the Blue Jackets? Will Todd Bertuzzi play a game without Steve Moore being mentioned?

Vancouver Canucks

The Canucks lost some key players this offseason in Marcus Naslund, Brenden Morrison and Trevor Linden, but they have two young stars in the eerie Sedin twins who each had 70 points last year. The key to success for the Canucks will be Roberto Luongo and the defense, because the Canucks won't be a particularly strong offensively this year, despite Pavol Demitra and Steve Bernier. It's going to be a tight division, and the Canucks were last place last year, but they were competetive. Don't expect that to change, no matter how much I want it to. (The part about being competetive, I mean)

What's New: Old forwards Naslund, Morrison and Linden out, new forwards Steve Bernier and Pavol Demitra in. Other less notable players like Kyle Wellwood, Nolan Baumgartner and Lawrence Nycholat.

Questions that need answering: Will Luongo injure himself, carrying this team on his back? Will my attempt to jinx them by picking them to make the playoffs work? Why do I have nightmares about the Sedins?

Colorado Avalanche

The Avs have a perfect blend of young and old, it appears, but are their old players too old? And will they mind having Tony Granato back behind the bench? Oh wait, I think I'm asking too many questions up here. I need to save some for the third part of the preview. So, in conclusion, the Avs need to play good hockey and they will win more hockey games.

What's new: Not much. Tony Granato is coaching, but he's done that before. They added Darcy Tucker, but does anyone care? Again, I am prematurely asking questions. Oh, and Peter Forsberg is gone. Remember Peter Forsberg? He was an Olympic diver.

Questions that need answering: Will Ryan Smyth and Joe Sakic have anything to talk about with Marek Svatos, Paul Stastny or Wojtek Wolski? By the way, is there a scarier set of youngsters, especially when coupled with Jean-Michael Liles? Should I say anything about Milan Hejduk?

Minnesota Wild

The Wild addressed their number one concern, scoring some frickin goals, by adding a few higher profile defensemen and letting two of their leading points producers walk. Um.... But hey, Marek Zidlicky and Marc-Andre Bergeron are offensive defensemen! I have to believe Jacques Lemaire will make this work though, otherwise I may weep.

What's New: Pavol Demitra and Brian Rolston have left, because who needs goals? They brought in Zidlicky and Bergeron to compliment an already offense oriented defense corps. Andrew Brunette is back for a victory lap, and Owen Nolan will continue to decompose in St. Paul. Also added: Antti Miettinen, Craig Weller and holy crap we have Krys Kolanos. YES.

Questions that need answering: Can the Wild score any goals this year? Who is the most grueling Minnesota team to watch, the Vikings or the Wild? Can the Wild lock up Gaborik, or will he be traded? Speaking of Gaborik, what's up with his beard?
Edmonton Oilers

The Oilers may be the most exciting non-playoff team in the league. It's not so much that they are laden with exciting scorers (Ales Hemsky? Erik Cole??) but because Kevin Lowe is absolutely crazy. Even when we get late in the year and they are out of the hunt, expect him to make a 15 player trade and somehow piss off three or four other GMs. Also, the Oilers have a good defense, too bad their netminder is 64 years old and they don't have reliable playmakers.

What's new: Weren't particularly active in the free agent markent, but they made several trades, ending up with Ryan Potulny, Lubo Visnovsky, Gilbert Brule and Eric Cole while giving up Jarret Stoll, Matt Greene, Raffi Torres and Joni Pitkanen. It always hurts to lose a Raffi.

Questions that need answering: Why don't players break out in Edmonton like it seems they should? Is it Ryan Smyth's fault? Will Lowe make more roster moves than the Oilers have wins? After reading one of these previews, do I actually know anything about hockey?

Am I Going Blind...

...or is Alex Ovechkin really on the cover of ESPN the Magazine?

In the middle of football season, hockey graces the cover of a "major" publication.* Who would have thought?

* - The term 'major' is used very loosely.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Here We Go Again: Carle Sideswiped by Kopecky

It's a new season and that can only mean one thing -- more head shots. Even though it's pre-season that doesn't mean guys are letting up. Take this hit by Detroit's Tomas Kopecky on Montreal's Mathieu Carle from earlier tonight. Concussion city. Right now, Carle is in the hospital. Apologies for sounding like a broken record but this is getting old and sad.

There isn't any video out there yet that I can embed, but RDS has the video here. As soon as I can embed something here, I will.

Wednesday's Hockey News

Here is a quick look at what is happening around the hockey world today.

Arkansas Icecats - Jeopardy host Alex Trebek will drop the puck for the opening faceoff night at the Icecats' home opener. Darrell Hammond will be there dressed as Sean Connery to piss Trebek off and also because the Icecats' Game Ops staff has a sick side.

Vancouver Canucks - Have hired Sean Avery as a fashion consultant.

NHL - Today the league unveiled a beta version of a redesigned NHL.com. Additionally, the Shop on NHL.com is offering brand new products such as a jar of Mark Messier's tears, a Gary Bettman Boo Machine and a book entitled 'A Handy Guide for Coping with Continual Failure'. The book will only be available to shoppers located in Long Island, Miami, Columbus, Los Angeles and Toronto.

Toronto Maple Leafs - Announced that they have acquired the rights to a playoff birth in 2010 in exchange for their hopes, dreams and aspirations.

Your Obligatory Atlantic Division Preview

Seeing as though we're only a little more than a week away from the regular season, it's probably about time to start previewing things. This year we're going to go division-by-division, starting with the Atlantic. Because everyone knows it's the best. Or at least the only one that matters.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Where else to lead off but with the defending Eastern Conference champs, the fuel for a lot of debate during the summer. The debate has been beaten into the ground about as bad as the Bulgarian women's hockey team (Ba-dum-bum. Thank you, thank you! I'll be here all week!), so I won't bother to bore you with it. There's no reason to go over all of that again. Instead, please accept the following as consolation.

What's New: New deals for Therien, Fleury and Malkin. Mass exodus to Florida (Roberts, Malone, Hall). Picked up New York's trash (Satan, Fedotenko). Also added Matt Cooke. That Hossa guy left, but he wasn't in town for very long.

Questions that Need Answering: Can they repeat last year even with a different set of mid-level and role players? Is Malkin recovered from his playoff cold streak? Can MAF have another stellar year? Will everyone finally realize that Hossa was not important to the regular season success of this team last year?

New York Rangers

The Rangers come into this season much like they did the last -- a couple big time free agent signings and a lot of holes on defense. Outside of a Redden and Rozsival, there isn't much of a backline. Lucky for them that they still have King Henrik. The forwards look a bit different, with the most significant change being the departure of Jaromir Jagr for Russia. Tom Renney is still behind the bench and, if you were wondering, the Knicks are still going to suck.

What's New: No more Jagr, Avery or Straka. Shanahan is still in purgatory. Naslund, Redden and Kalinin are the big additions to the Garden.

Questions that Need Answering: Is this defense going to be capable of not letting Lundqvist hang out to dry for 82 games? Can Jagrs shoes be adequately filled? What kind of shoes can Redden buy with $6.5 mil?

New Jersey Devils

The Devils are coming off a year where they surprised the heck out of a lot of people, finishing third in the division in points. Despite that, Lou Lamoriello decided that he needed to jump in a time machine and take his team back to it's glory days. He signed former Devils Brian Rolston and Bobby Holik although Ken Daneyko could not be lured out of retirement. Greg Wyshynski, however, is still available.

What's New: Ex-Devils return (Holik, Rolston). Re-signed a whole bunch of players. Not much else to talk about here.

Questions that Need Answering: Will people lay off Marty Broduer because the guy proved that he can still play? Will Bobby Holik, you know, remember how to play decent hockey? Is it really that hard to believe that this group of guys will challenge for the division again this year? (Yes, it is.)

Philadelphia Flyers

Last season, the Flyers pulled a massive 180-degree turn by making it to the playoffs after finishing last in the NHL the previous season. This year they play to turn things right around and lose all 82 games. Not really, but that would be hilarious if they tried it. In other news, lets start a pool on how long it will take a Flyer to get a massive suspension. I'm going to go with five days.

What's New: Sent away Umberger, Prospal, Dowd, Modry and Jason Smith. Brought in two Ex-Isles; Arron Asham and Bryan Berard. Ex-Isles. Get it?!!?

Questions that Need Answering: Was that really Mr. Feeny during the playoffs? (I refuse to let that go.) Can the dancing orange shirt guy be utilized as a mascot? Talking about the Flyers makes me queasy, so can I stop now?

New York Islanders

Ah, yes. Saving the best and possibly craziest for last. As I'm sure you've heard, things went sour for Ted Nolan and the Isles last spring. After a long, drawn out divorce the team has a new coach and a whole bunch of fresh faces. Like last year, nothing is expected out of this team. Two goals for this year; hope the kids show some spunk and get the Lighthouse Project through already.

What's New: New coach, new kids (Okposo, Tambellini, etc) and hopefully breaking ground on a new (sort of) arena. Added Streit and Weight. Let go of dead wood (i.e. Satan, Vasicek, Fedotenko).

Questions that Need Answering: Is this team going to have to pay their fans to watch the games? How much legal hot water is owner Charles Wang in, if any? Will Wade Dubielewicz be hired to replace Garth Snow at the end of the season?

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fantasy Hockey Update


Just a quick update about the BMR fantasy hockey leagues...

The Invitational League is drafting tonight. My apologies to everyone for moving it back a day, but real life got in the way. We'll be good to go at 9:30 EST tonight (Tuesday).

The free-for-all league is all drafted and ready to go. Let the games begin! About time, ain't it?

Good luck to everyone involved in the fantasy leagues! If there is any interest in starting a third league, please express your interests in the comments. Speak now or forever hold your peace sort of thing.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Paul Stastny Hurt, May Be Cause for Failing Economy

In the above photo, Stastny proves that no shirt nor hill can stop him from conquering the world.

At this point, you probably don't want to be reminded of the economic issues going on in the world. Sports are an escape and it can be nice to get away from reality when it troubles us (interesting paradox there if you're Steve Bartman).

But sometimes sports are what makes the world go round. Companies shell out millions for Super Bowl commercials and the Olympics amazingly distract the news networks during, yes, an election year. This, ladies and gentlemen, is one of those times.

I have found the reason for all of our economic turmoil. It is not the oil companies. It is not bad loans. It is Paul Stastny's busted shoulder.

Paul Stastny came off the ice early today, with his right shoulder sagging and clearly in pain. The Avs’ lone all star from last year had a collision during a scrimmage (not sure who he collided with yet or the exact circumstances), but Stastny immediately headed for the dressing room, clearly favoring his shoulder....
Yes, folks. It's all too fishy for me. Paul Stastny, master of the known universe and fantasy hockey legend, is hurt and it is clearly the reason for all the problems in the world today. As goes Stastny, so goes the American stock market. It only makes too much sense.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sorry to interrupt...

Dean Lombardi's sweet wheels
Ryan Henning/Barry Melrose Rocks Images

Hey, Ryan here, and I know I usually don't post except for on Thursday's, but Dean Lombardi just pulled into my parking lot...

(Seriously, that car is in my parking lot right now)

Friday, September 19, 2008

Reader Commentary Theatre

Well, I supposed it's about time to finally end a week on the right note -- with RCT in it's Friday home. It hasn't been on Fridays just yet, but that's because I'm forgetful. So, from now on, it will be on Friday afternoons. Unless I forget. Which I won't. Hopefully.

Anyway, have a good weekend and don't do anything JR wouldn't do. Ha! That leaves a lot of room for interpretation, doesn't it?

Iowa City Chops - have announced they need applesauce and ketchup ASAP

- Loser Domi on Tuesday's Hockey News

Don't forget the notable accomplishment of inventing Sangria which helps you watch the offensive stylings of Scott Gomez.

- Black Capricorn on Relocating is weird.

Tale of the Tape: Barry Melrose vs. Matt Barnaby

The Globe and Mail

With the news today that the Matt Barnaby-to-ESPN thing is almost official, I think it's time to welcome our newest Non-Mulleted Television Commentator Overload.

While I know it's going to be a long, hard road towards acceptance -- hey, those are some big shoes to fill -- I'm confident that in the end we'll get along just fine with Matt. Even though he used to play for the Rangers.

But now that things are official, or at least getting closer to becoming so, I decided we should try to get to know Mr. Barnaby a bit better. So in a 4th grade venn-diagram kind of way, we're going to compare and contrast our past and (potentially) present overlords. Enjoy and have a great weekend!

Barry Melrose Matthew Barnaby
6'0" 6'1"
205 191
52 35
Kelvington, SASK Ottawa, ON
NHL career:
1979-1986, 1992-1995 (Coach) 1992-2007
NHL Teams:
Kings, Jets, Leafs, Red Wings Sabres, Penguins, Lightning, Rangers, Avalanche, Blackhawks, Stars
36th overall, 1976 83rd overall, 1992
Numbers worn:
2, 6, 26 36, 38, 77
Career PIM:
728 2562
Broadcast experience:
Do you have to ask? NHL on TSN
Greasy Pest
Good friend(s):
Bucci, Steve Levy Rob Ray
Identifying Characteristic:
Mullet Being an ass-kicker
Best player ever traded for:
Jamie Hislop Wayne Primeau
Known Enemies:
Humidity Tie Domi, Lyle Odelein
Not afraid to:
Speak his mind Have dinner with you and then fight you
Comparable celebrity:
Chris Berman, if Berman was charismatic and entertaining Luke Wilson. Maybe.
Comparable produce:
Radish Cantaloupe
Free association:
Musk, Vidal Sassoon, Don Cherry's Arch-nemesis I hate the New York Rangers
Awesome Nickname they don't have but should:
Lord of Videotape Analysis Destroyer of Jawbones
Occupation, if they didn't play hockey:
Hairstylist Chiropractor
Civilization they most resemble:
America circa 1840. The gold rush was the first thing that came to mind. Sparta of Ancient Greece. Barnaby could totally be in that movie.
Movie role born to play:
Mel Gibson in the Patriot Fulton Reed in the Mighty Ducks

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Inside the Los Angeles Kings front office

[Owners Philip Anschutz and Edward Roski sit at the end of a long conference table, and general manager Dean Lombardi walks in]

Anschutz: Have a seat, Mr. Lombardi. Mr Roski and I are very disappointed in how you are spending our money. Really, what was the biggest free agent that you signed this year?

Lombardi: Uhh.....

Roski: [cocks eyebrow]

Anschutz: I understand the youth movement, but what have you been doing with our money?

Lombardi: Well, sirs, I had been hoping to surprise you, but since you asked I should tell you... the money has been going towards, well, a time machine.
Roski: [cocks eyebrow]

Anschutz: What?!

Lombardi: Hear me out. The Kings used to be cool! Barry Melrose used to be our coach! He's probably the most popular analyst in the sport, and because of that, he can still apparently coach! If we had known he was going to keep that mullet, we would have kept him! If I knew what a blog was, I would guarantee there was one named after him!

Anschutz: Go on...

Lombardi: We had Wayne Freaking Gretzky! The Great One! If we could go back, get him and put him on the ice, imagine how much better he would make the team.

Roski: [cocks eyebrow]

Lombardi: Don't forget, we also had Zigmund Palffy. Ziggy! With a name like that, we can use the comic strip Ziggy in our promotions! Everyone loves Ziggy!

Anschutz: Are you saying our stars aren't marketable?

Lombardi: Well.... [yells into hallway] Anze! Come here a minute

[Anze Kopitar enters] : Awwww man, me and Frolov were going to play Star Wars! I got to be Luke this time!

Roski: [cocks eyebrow]

Anschutz: When can the time machine be ready?

Relocating is weird.

Viva Espana!

As I often do, I feel the need to regale you with a story from my personal life. My employer, Real Job Inc, as I call it, was recently acquired by another company. It was an acquisition and not a buyout, so there is no fear that I'll be laid off, but since my new employers don't have offices in Minnesota, there is a very real chance that somewhere down the line I could be relocated. The most likely scenarios, if I were to be moved, include Baltimore, the US headquarters, Calgary, the North American headquarters, Toronto, home of our largest client or the world headquarters.
World HQ is in Madrid. As in Spain. In the other three areas, I would be able to follow pro hockey, or at the very least, the Maple Leafs. What has Spain ever given to hockey? Let's review.

1492 - Christopher Columbus, using a grant from Spain discovers the new world.

1492-19th century - Spanish influence expands, with Hispanic culture, language and names encompassing South and Central America.

Late 20th century - Manny Fernandez and Scott Gomez enter the league.

Pray for me. But at least I would be the greatest hockey blogger Spain has ever seen.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Melrose Throws Out First Pitch at Rays Game

(C) Tampa Bay Lightning

On Monday night, the Mulleted One went across town to throw out the first pitch at the Tampa Bay Rays game. If you're not familiar with them, they're a horrible professional baseball team that is having the season of a lifetime this year. If you're not familiar with professional baseball, it's a sport where people get paid more than hockey players to stand around in a field for three hours every day.

The Lightning have a photo gallery full of stills from the occasion, which was surely the biggest thing to happen to baseball in Tampa Bay since, well, the inception of baseball in Tampa Bay. As it so happened, the Rays got destroyed on Monday night, 13-5 by the Boston Red Sox. The Sox hit seven -- count 'em seven -- home runs off Tampa Bay pitching, proving that Melrose's Mullet does not bring good luck to all who are graced with it's presence.

Nonetheless, I will continue to worship it anyway. All hail King Barry! Hail you feeble peasants! Hail!

Parts of this report courtesy BMR Tampa Bay Bureau Chief Jon H.

.Com is .Crap

So apparently the .com isn't working and hasn't been working for quite some time. I wasn't happy with the domain registrar from the start and they're really not helping their case right now. If anyone has suggestions as to what registrars are Blogger friendly, let me know cause we're a-movin'!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Tuesday's Hockey News

It's time once again to take a look and see what news is coming over the wire today. Here are the major transactions around the hockey world.

Philadelphia Flyers - Signed a crackhead from South Philly. Theo Fleury is upset he didn't at least get a tryout.

Quad City Flames - Have postponed their game on Friday to Sunday. Their time slot was double booked with American Idol on Ice.

New York Islanders - Announced that no matter what Ranger fans say, Denis Potvin does not suck.

New York Rangers - Released an extremely detailed thesis paper on why Denis Potvin does, in fact, suck.

Mats Sundin - Announced that he had two buttermilk waffles for breakfast, but is unsure as to whether or not he enjoyed them.

American Idol on Ice - Has confirmed that it will replace the Quad City Flames in the AHL's West Division, starting on Friday.

ESPN Says Goodbye to Barry Melrose

Yes, folks. This is footage of Barry Melrose's Farewell party from ESPN. There was such a thing. And, amazingly, there were paparazzi (I think?) there to capture the ESPN party on video.

Yeah. Someone actually covered it. That sound you hear is a bunch of readers slapping their foreheads in unison. It was actually Dirty Water TV that covered it, which is very likely the worst named TV network in the history of TV networks.

All in all, I'm glad that this was caught on tape. I can now sleep a little sounder knowing that Barry is in Steve Levy's fave five.

No word as to whether or not Dana Jacobson was invited.

h/t Going Five Hole

Reader Commentary Theatre

Well, this post got delayed a couple of days. I promise it was a good reason: SEC football. That stuff will eat up your life and make you late for work on occasion. It's especially problematic for those brave souls who start tailgating on Friday morning for a Saturday night game. Taking 48 hours of your life to get shit drunk to watch a bunch of teenagers run around hitting each other in 95* heat and 350% humidity is really something that should be commended. Or banned. One of the two.

But I digress.

Someday... Someday we'll get this thing posted on a Friday. But anyway, here are your comments of the week.

My parents hated me and only gave me a box of soap for Christmas; therefore this post offends me.

- Black Capricorn on last week's Reader Commentary Theatre

free Jeremy Roenick dance lessons to all!

- Going Five Hole on The Vote for Leahy Campaign Begins

My Mommy says I'm as big as the sky!

- Loser Domi on South Park Meets Reality

Monday, September 15, 2008

Your Monday Morning Ice Breaker

Two YouTube videos in a row? You're a lucky bunch, aren't you?

Today's video comes to us as a tribute to Brandon Sugden. On Sunday, Sugden got word that he would be allowed to try out with the Islanders. Whether or not you agree with giving Sugden a second chance, you've got to admit that the guy can throw some serious punches.

South Park Meets Reality

I'm a big fan of the television show South Park. You might be too. Either way, there was an episode a year or two ago where one of the main characters, Stan, was put in charge of a pee-wee hockey team. We're talking like pre-K kids here.

Long story short, Stan's team gets to go to the Pepsi Center and play during intermission against another team. When their opponents don't show up, they have to play the Detroit Red Wings. The Wings win by thirty, beat up the kids and, in beautiful South Park fashion, relive the ending to the Mighty Ducks movie while 'We are the Champions' plays in the background.

Sometimes reality is a little closer than we imagine. In the real-life version, which you surely have heard about, the Bulgarian women's team ends up in a similar situation. No one gets trampled. No one plays Queen at the end. But someone still gets demolished on the scoreboard.

Today, via Mirtle via Puck Daddy, we've got video evidence of the Bulgarian women's team losing 82-0. Sometimes there's piling on and then sometimes there's... Well... This is piling on no matter how you slice it. But it still doesn't cease to amaze me.

Remember kids, practice makes perfect.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Name Changes that need to happen

If Ocho Cinco works, then let's call Carlo Colaiacovo Carlo Ocho

Over at the Times, we have name changin' fever. Cincinnati Bengal Chad Johnson has changed his name to Chad Ocho Cinco. It's not the first time names have been changed, and it's not the first time someone has changed their name to something stupid. In the spirit of being stupid, let's look at 5 name changes that need to happen in the NHL.

1) Barry Melrose --> Barry Mullet. Nothing like a guy named after his most defining physical feature, and the best part is, he wouldn't have to change any of his monogrammed towels.

2) Krys Kolanos --> Chris Kolanos. Please. Make this happen Krys. Chris. Your name bugs me.

3) Florida Panthers --> Winnipeg Jets. Ok, so not so much a name change. I want Winnipeg to have a team again though, so even if we don't have hockey IN North Dakota, at least it's really close.

4) Barry Trotz --> Barry Devito. I'm pretty sure that Barry Trotz and Danny Devito are related. They share the "absent neck" gene. Go back to your roots, Barry. Just change your name.

5) Kevin Schultz --> Melrose Luongo. I can't imagine a name more fitting for him. I imagine this would make Kevin one of the happiest people on earth.

Never Forget.

AP/Mark Lennihan

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

BMR Fantasy Leagues are Ready to Go!

One of the cool things we did last year, at least in my opinion, were our fantasy hockey leagues. And now it's time once again to get your fantasy hockey on!

We're doing things slightly different this year. The first thing is a 12-team BMR Invitational League. This should be a good time and it's comprised of a bunch of different people; Ryan and myself, friends of the site, a few regular commenters and the winner of last year's fantasy league, Phoenix Pharts. Here's the exact rundown.

  • Ryan
  • Myself
  • Phoenix Pharts (returning Champs)
  • Eric McErlain
  • Earl Sleek
  • Pensblog
  • BlackCapricorn
  • Kevin M (one of my good friends)
  • Jason Plank
  • Scotty Hockey
  • wufpirate
  • Loser Domi
We're doing a live-draft for this one, and I'm considering live-blogging the event. Hopefully this turns out to be a pretty fun league for everyone.

The second league, which just went live, is open to everyone. It's first come, first served. It's also a 12-team league on Yahoo! and the signup information is below. We'll see how quickly that league fills up, in which case more may be opened. The only requirement for this league is that you must be on top of your team for the duration of the season. The worst thing you can have in a fantasy league are 'dead' teams. So here's all the info, and good luck to everyone!

Sign up link
League ID: 27086
Password: stamkos
Live online draft: Sept 21, 7:15 PM EST

Takin' it to the House

I'm going to be a bit busy with, um, life today so here is my latest from FanHouse to give you your daily dose of Schultz. It's an LA Kings-themed day today. Enjoy!

Kings Make Appearance on the Price is Right

Eklund Rips Off Los Angeles Writer