Monday, February 21, 2011

Heritage Classic

An outdoor matchup in front of 41,000 screaming, half-frozen hosers at McMahon Stadium in Calgary featured the Flames beating down the Habs, 4-0.
  • I like watching the Habs lose in front of a national audience.
  • Hal Gill sucks.
  • Local boy Andy Brickley doing the color commentary for the Versus network. While Jack Edwards is regarded as one of the loonier play-by-play guys in the NHL, our own Andy Brickley has emerged as being one of the best color guys covering the NHL today. There was an uptick to the give-a-shit index here at the 311 newsroom because Brick was covering the game.
  • Carey Price with a mask/helmet done in the style of Jacques Plante, really looked more creepy than being a tribute. It's the stuff from which bad dreams are made.
  • No zamboni. I forget why (too cold, weight would crack ice or something? I'm too lazy to look it up*), but dudes were shoveling and hosing down the ice between periods. I guess as the sun went down in Calgary, it got wicked cold. had Calgary temps at 15F. WIMPS.
  • Folks at love to call Boston, "Beantown". Anyone you know locally who calls Boston, "Beantown"? It's to spot an out-of-towner...they call it "Beantown". "Beantown" etymology; also, here.

*it's this kind of ace journalism that makes Vf311 the best blog in town.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

B's win; Chiarelli Rolls Dice

  • As we all know well by now, the B's packaged Joe Colborne, a 1st round pick, and a conditional pick to the Maple Laffs to get our rent-a-player, Tomas Kaberle. My understanding is that the conditional pick hems on the B's making (or winning) the Stanley Cup and/or re-signing Kaberle. Kaberle looked okay during their 4-2 win over Ottawa the other night, but looked best on the power play, feeding Chara juicy passes for one-timer attempts. The word on Colborne is that for a 6'-6" dude, he played pretty soft, not utilizing his size in the corners, etc. But TOR thinks they got 2-1st rounders for Kaberle, and their future looks bright, but the Leafs will always blow.
  • As we all know well by now, the B's, in order to make room for the Kaberle contract, sent Mark Stuart & Blake Wheeler to Atlanta for Rich Peverley & Boris Valabik. Valabik is a monster, a throw-in on the deal who will probably amount to nothing despite his huge size and deep love for all things Chara. Rich Peverley is another smart forward like Chris Kelly who will get dirty in the corners unlike Wheeler. It's no secret that I'm pleased that Wheeler and his self-passes are gone. Losing Stuart kind of sucks (got in a fight in his first Atlanta game; Wheels got an assist), but as someone said over email on friday - if it means we get to raise Lord Stanley's Cup at the cost of Mark Stuart, I'll do it.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Where is our puck-moving d-man?

Random junk, let the irrationality and misinformation begin:
  • Roster from the other night indicated that Blake Wheeler likes Steely Dan. It corresponds with his laid back ways. The Dan is cool, but Wheels is not. I hope he's packaged up with a pick and sent away for our future d-man.
  • Chris Kelly on his way from Ottawa. A dude from the Chiarelli days, it seems as though he's a PJ Axelsson-type with better finishing skillz. Good on PK, responsible defensively, great locker room presence, etc.
  • Speaking of skillz, dontcha hate Hal Gill? Man, he sucks.
  • Mark Stuart has worked his way back into the lineup after Boychuk started sucking and found his way to the press box. Stuey hasn't beaten anyone up yet, but here thinks he's suppressing some serious rage, being supplanted by Kampfer, so I think whoever is going to pay, is going to pay big and they will be bloodied.
  • No "Kesssss-elllll" chants from the crowd the other night, so Kessel used this as a reason to actually play a somewhat decent game, scoring 2 goals to help beat the B's, 4-3. He was booed every time he touched the puck, but it didn't cause unforced errors like previous times. Chara checked Grabovski into the boards and it didn't appear to be a bad hit, but the dude fell to the ice, then tried to get up and fell again. I didn't think his head was involved but he appeared to be woozy. Didn't affect him skating thru the porous scoring the winning goal with a minute left, though.
  • It appears that Horton has settled into a deep coma.
  • Having Recchi on the point during the power play feels weird, but at this point, I think Cload is trying anything for PP goals, I can't blame him for trying something, anything, to get results.
  • Where is our puck-moving defenseman? I mean, really, we have this conversation every year, and every year they do nothing. Lame.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

B's Return to Sleepwalking Ways

Last night's game - it didn't happen, okay?

Typical B's the past few years. Play a game that gets the pulse beating of the fanbase, especially the casual/hibernating fans...everyone tunes in, gets interested, and then they negate that effort with a dead game - this time vs. the very good Red Wings. So to all you folks who raised your head up after slumbering for the past 20 or so years, go back to sleep - this team may not, in fact, be forreal. Needless to say, I did not DVR this game.
  • What the eff, Tuuukkka? I've seen the ol' shoot-the-puck-off-the-goalie's-back work before (Bergeron did this to someone), but you really lost your focus on this one. Your head is simply not in the game.
  • Too many Red Wings fans last night. It was Euro-trash last night at the Fleet. But they were a generally well-behaved set.
  • Someone barfed upon leaving the upper concourse level. Went into a nook at the top of the stairs and spewed all over the concrete floor. I'm not sure if this was a result of the game or something else, but it was pretty nasty. I saw carrots.
  • What a shitshow.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The NHL is Decadent and Depraved

So, yeah, the B's played the Habs last night, beat them down pretty good, winnings 8-6 and earning some 90 something minutes in penalties in the process. A lot happened last night, so I'm sure I'm forgetting nearly everything.
  • So folks like Lapierre, Kostopoulos, etc. have been replaced by Subban and Pacioretty. Pacioretty is from CT. That explains a lot.
  • Came home, put "Bruins in 2" on DVR just to hear Jack Edwards have an aneurysm on the air when the fights started. I watched it this morning and boy, one fight that definitely didn't look like much from where I was sitting but was positively ruthless was Campbell's beatdown of Tom Pyatt. Pyatt absorbed what I counted 14 consecutive lefts courtesy of Campbell's wee fist. KPD was nutz (okay, everyone's been creaming over last night's performance. Michael Felger was just drooling all over Mazz today.) about Campbell's "frenetic, raw fury not seen since the days of O'Reilly".
  • A caller on one of those shows drew up this comparison and I thought it was fitting:

  • Pierre LeBrun whined/tweeted that Boychuk & Thornton lost respect for going after Spacek & Hamrlik, but really folks when the line brawl happens, ya grab the nearest guy and starting whaling on him. And Pyatt threw the first punch on Campbell and Campbell finished him off.
  • As usual, had some goofy U-S-A! chants going on despite the Habs having some 5-6 Americans on their roster compared to the Bruins 2 or 3. Also, we didn't hear any hosers booing the National Anthems or showing any disrespect, so as usual, it's the few that ruin it for everyone, yet still causing all radio hosts & callers to start breathing fire over a coupla drunken hosers in skinny jeans acting all retarded.
  • Krejci: STOP FIGHTING. Leave that to the guys who, well, can. He's 160lbs and can't throw a punch, but takes on Benoit Pouliot and gets KO'd on one punch. We can't lose another center, so I hope Cload set him straight. OR, learn how to punch/defend yourself the next time you want to drop 'em.
  • Krejci/Lootch/Horton were each +5 last night. Insane.
  • NESN correctly pointed out that Chara made a bee-line right for Pacioretty to smash his face in because of the way the last game ended at the Bell Centre. Also, during the 3rd? line brawl, Recchi was screaming at the linesmen/refs to let the fights happen, "let 'em go!!" while Recchi had Plekanec (or some other hapless Hab) wrapped up.
  • So the line brawl finishes, the refs are sorting out the mess and what does the FleetGarden play? not something to incite fear, but rather, "Bang the Drum All Day" by Todd Rundgren. And so the mood changes in the place from one of fear to one of celebration.
  • Ray Allen just set the NBA all-time record for career 3-pointers. Now I can stop watching this game. I've already seen about 400 travelling non-calls. Celtics/Lakers on a Thursday night is odd - should be on sunday afternoon on CBS with Dick Stockton & Hubie Brown. It is notable that Marv Albert is aging his toupee accordingly.* BEAT LA BEAT LA. Remember it was the Celtics' Chris Ford in 1981 who shot the first 3-pointer in NBA history. Ray Allen, he got game.

*I think some comedian (Denis Leary? Bill Hicks?) mentioned something about this once...

Sunday, February 6, 2011

B's get shut out

  • B's got shut out yesterday, 2-0.
  • Some dude (Dennis Kulyash) in the KHL shot a 110.3 mph shot the other day. You know how certain radar guns are faster than others, like in baseball ("yeah, he hit 98 on the Jugs gun")? I mean, the device was probably calibrated by the Russian mob or something. As far as I am concerned, it never happened.
  • Phil Kessel was benched, then moved to the 3rd line for the Maple Leafs. He has a 10 game scoring drought, and is -22. Ron Wilson and he are not getting along. Kessel gets picked last for the All-Star draft, gives an awkward interview, wins a wimpy Honda. Ladies & gents, Phil Kessel is the gift that just keeps on giving, yeah?
  • got nuthin'.

Friday, February 4, 2011

B's Harpoon Whale; Stars See Stars

The other night, the B's hung on to beat the Whalers, 3-2. I actually fell asleep during the 2nd intermission of the game, missing the go ahead goals by Bergeron & Horton. But at least Horton scored. Also missed the crazy saves by Thomas to keep the B's in the lead.
  • The other day, a Whaler fan came out from its mom's basement, saw its shadow and ran back downstairs. 6 more weeks of winter.
  • Oh yes, 3 fights in 4 seconds. It was headline news, it even made ESPN. Even Chiarelli admitted on T&R admitted today that he enjoyed the fisticuffs. Of course, it was all made sweeter with the quick goals that were scored right afterwards. But it made for the most exciting period of hockey we've had in awhile - 4 fights and 4 goals. And 3 of those fights had KO's as well. On NESN, Milbury was positively aglow, as he spent more time analyzing the fights than the game itself. Said McQuaid's style was reminiscent of old-school Neely fights.
  • Nice screen by Kampfer on the goal by Morrow.
  • Blown coverage by Seguin on the Skrastins goal. He was caught flat-footed. Plus Seguin missed 2 open net opportunities.
  • Paille throws the first check in his life, ends up getting suspended for 4 games and getting fined most of his salary.
  • Marchand is establishing himself as the leading candidate for the 7th player award and maybe even the Calder Trophy?
  • Zach Hamill was called up to replace Paille, and is probably serving as a tryout in the Marc Savard replacement sweepstakes.
  • Now just have to see if the team can build upon these recent wins and stomp the Sharks tomorrow.