Sunday, December 30, 2007


Will We Have a 60-Goal Scorer This Season?

by Jes

With Alexander Ovechkin's 4-goal effort last night, we have two players in the NHL that are on pace to score 60 goals this season.

While we've had enough 50-goal scorers over the years, 60 seems to be a glass ceiling of sorts, as it's been 12 years (Mario Lemieux) since that mark was achieved.

I always want to score more goals," Ovechkin said, pausing as veteran center Michael Nylander walked into the locker room.

"Michael Nylander helps me a lot," he said with a chuckle. "He gives me lots of assists. But sometimes he doesn't give me the puck. Come on, Mikey!" Ovechkin turned serious again, adding, "Of course, I always want to keep going up" in goal totals each season.

Looking at the top goal scorers as of this morning ...

Ilya Kovalchuk - 32 goals in 39 games. On pace for 67.
Alex Ovechkin - 30 goals in 39 games. On pace for 63.
Jarome Iginla - 27 goals in 39 games. On pace for 56.

We'd expect one or more of these players to cool off, but both Ovechkin and Kovalchuk have been red-hot most of the season, and we might finally get a 60-goal scorer.

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Friday, December 28, 2007


Live Game Recap: Canucks 5, Flames 3

By Jes

Last night's 5-3 Vancouver Canucks win over the Calgary Flames was my first live game of the season. It might be my last, too, unless someone wants to donate to my unregistered charity ;)

The play was sloppy like cafeteria chili, and the Canucks were out-chanced most of the night, but they won and that's all that matters.

Some random thoughts ...

1. Mike Weaver is below-average in just about every facet of the game. If you don't get nervous when he is on the ice, please have your emotion chip checked.

2. You HAVE to see Daniel Sedin's spin-o-rama goal. Nice!

3. Dion Phaneuf (what a dumb name, eh?) continues to climb my chart of people I want to see injured. Not only does he have that permanent sourpuss look on his ugly face, but he never finishes what he starts. At least Avery drops the gloves often enough.

4. The boos for Mike Keenan and "Keenan Sucks" chants would have brought a tear to my eye if I was capable of that emotion.

5. The new line of Pyatt-Raymond-Jaffray had some wicked offensive chemistry together. Do we *Gasp* have the makings of an actual second line? Sub in Morrison for Jaffray when Mo returns from injury and the Canucks may get some scoring from somebody who isn't Swedish

6. A big FU to the concession stand lady that gave my girlfriend a cup of Sprite that had about 90% ice in it. Talk about cheap ass.

7. When people fill out those credit card apps for the free T-shirt, do they actually give real information? Do these kiosks verify this? I'm tempted to sign up under a fake name and score myself some merch.

8. Remember when Owen Nolan used to be a great player? With Trevor Linden, we've seen his slow decline first-hand. With Nolan, it's different since we don't see him nearly as much. Before the lockout, he's good. After the lockout, he sucks eggs.

9. Canucks' mascot Fin (boo!!) is breeding. Ugh.

10. Alex Burrows, the Phil Bourque of the YouTube generation.
(I bet none of the YouTube generation will get that reference)

11. The Canucks are now selling carved beef sandwiches. Nice to see them expanding the menu, but I'm not paying $9.25 for a sub-standard deli product.

12. I very much enjoyed throwing popcorn at a barky Flames fan, and the peeps in front of me took it one step further and threw peanut shells. Then the ushers came, and we were scolded for being mean. Awww :( Don’t' be coming into our corporate-named building and get all squawky crow with us, ma'am.

13. Fan highlight of the night: Two girls were dancing and were caught on the in-stadium cam to win some prize. The final freeze frame caught one of them giving the finger to a Flames

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Thursday, December 27, 2007


Slava Reaches #1000, Makes Blogger Feel Old

by Jes

There are many things that make me feel older, such as seeing Salt N Pepa with their own reality show and realizing how long its been since they put out anything good, looking over the Vancouver Giants roster and seeing that I'm over a decade older than most of those kids, and certain NHL milestones.

You can add Slava "Biatch-a-slap" Kozlov reaching 1000 NHL games, which he achieved vs. his old buddy Sergei Fedorov and the Columbus Dinner Jackets.

I think it's very special. One thousand games, not everybody can make it, and I'm really happy I'm playing my 1,000th game against my old teammate Sergei Fedorov," Kozlov said. "We played a lot of years in Detroit together."

The stats:
1000 Games Played
315 Goals
416 Assists
731 Points

Now, I know Kozzy has been in the league for ages, but when a player reaches 1000 games (over 12 full seasons worth of matches), it pretty much hits like you a lead hammer that "Damn, this guy has been around a long time.". When it's a guy like Kozlov, who kinda sneaks up on you, it makes you feel even older than you already do.

Now, I'll acknowledge Kozlov's skill and the playmaking abilities he brings to the Thrashers, but I'm not still not a big fan of Slava and his wonky evil eye.

I'll forever remember the trade to Buffalo, and the sulking Slava took to afterwards. Instead of utilizing the chance to break free of Fedorov's shadow, Kozlov simply sulked about being traded to a team that wasn't l33t.

Well, I don't hate him as much as some Sabres fans (the below yanked from a message board), but I'm not pleased with him for making me feel older.

Enjoy This rant

But let's face some facts: (1) Hasek allowed you to be traded here because you were useless to the Wings. (He was right.) (2) You completely cowered out. Instead of "manning up" and helping to turn the Sabres into something, you wanted to get away. (3) As a result, you play for a freaking hockey team IN ATLANTA. I don't care if they pull off the next seven Cups, you're still behind college football, baseball, pro football, college basketball, NASCAR, pro basketball, Democrat bashing, women's pro basketball, tennis, golf, water polo, tobacco spitting, Walmart shopping, rodeo, women's rodeo, Kozlov rodeo, frisbee golf, hacky-sack, and about every other sport or somewhat-organized activity down there in East Alabama. Here, if you had shown some sack, you'd be the toast of the town.

You could have stayed here and have become something. Instead, you pulled up your skirt and took what looked at the time to be the easy way out. And damn, you demanded it, didn't you? A trip to that hockey hotbed, Atlanta, Georgia. (Did they tell you then that this is their second team? Or were they too sick of your whining to care?) How were the playoffs last year? Oh, I forgot--you and the rest of the Atlanta squad "flamed out"--pun intended--and didn't make it. Hey, at least you were on the team, right? Not like that Russian Olympic team that you somehow didn't make for about the fourth try.

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Sunday, December 23, 2007


Satan hits 666 O NOES!!!!111

by Jes

Do you feel a sense of evil in the air this morning? Are the dogs in your neighbourhood barking lustily? Is your shower raining blood?

Yes, our favourite son of Lucifer hit the magic 666 mark last night with a goal against the Capitals last night.

Over at the FanHouse, Big Mac basically echoes my thoughts.

You see, Satan's 10th goal of the regular season was also the 666th point of his relatively successful NHL career. And 666, as anyone who has watched The Omen, The Exorcist or The Ninth Gate, or is simply up on their Bible study can tell you, that's the famed "Mark of the Beast" that represents the Anti-Christ.

I'm sure Satan will be the target of some more good natured ribbing in the coming days. In the meantime, we can all still hold out for the night that Lou Lamoriello makes all our dreams come true, and acquires Satan for the New Jersey Devils.

Hopefully, Satan gets another point soon before we have Armageddon. It might be a good idea to lock the doors and have a baseball bat ready.

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Friday, December 21, 2007


John Paddock, Mein Fuhrer?

by Jes

While ex-Bruins coach Dave Lewis always drew the Adolf Hitler comparisons, I always saw more of a London cop in the moustached man. Having a short moustache is not reason alone for the nasty comparison.

Now, any time I see John Paddock, I see a very eerily similarity to Der Fuhrer.

See? Put a moustache on the Sens coach and what do you get?

On another note, we need to coin "The John Paddock Face". Every time I see Paddock on TV, he has this look that is a mixture of disgust and anger. Even though his team is rockin the charts, the guy is just never happy, and his expression rarely changes. It's quite comical, and I wonder if he had the same expression on his marriage day.

(Yes, I am already going to Hell. I might as well speed up the process. And to my Jewish readers, please relax. Shalom)

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Thursday, December 20, 2007


Where Would YOU Put an Expansion Team?

by Jes

We all love to argue about why the NHL should relocate this franchise to that place and why we shouldn't expand to Arkansas.

Well, over at The NHL FanHouse, I put together a list of four cities that I would choose for expansion, if I was given THE POWA!!!

1. Las Vegas
2. Hamilton
3. Houston
4. Seattle

Surprise you at all?

Go check out the article, as I give my reasons for selecting those cities. I believe all four would be profitable and successful. As much as I'd love to see Winnipeg with an NHL club, they just don't have the corporate support necessary.

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What's so Great About Outdoor Hockey Games?

by Jes

It appears that having outdoor hockey games is the big trend these days, and now the Flyers want to jump on that bandwagon with an annual outdoor game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at "Beaver Stadium" (insert Beavis laughter here)

Quite honestly, if I had the chance to go to one of these things, I highly doubt I would. It just doesn't seem like a whole lot of fun to watch hockey in sub-zero temperatures, surrounded by a bunch of drunk, immature twits.

1. I HATE the cold! This is the primary reason why I live in Vancouver (it's milder compared to the rest of Canada) and why I sleep with 6 different blankets and the heat turned up full blast. I don't want to stand outside in cold weather for 10 minutes, much less up to 3 hours. Why anyone would subject themselves to this form of torture is beyond me. I'll watch from my comfy and warm couch, thanks.

2. The games are sloooooooooooooooooow. Remember the big Heritage Classic between the Oilers and Habs? The action was too slow even for Jacques Lemaire to love, and the players were obviously having some trouble adjusting to the insane cold. For a variety of reasons, the players aren't going to be as fluid and comfortable as they normally are, and it leads to action that is less than thrilling. It was more for the spectacle, that people watched, rather than the on-ice action.

3. By the slim chance I ever got a seat, you can imagine that it would be so far away from the action that even one of NASA's best telescopes couldn't allow me to see what is going on. Hockey was not meant for football stadiums, and most of the people there won't be able to get a great view. If you are going to stand out in the freezing cold, at least make it worthwhile.

So, I ask, what's the big deal?

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Wednesday, December 19, 2007


Wednesday's Wackiness

by Jes

My girlfriend sent me this photo of the Toronto Maple Leafs defense, and it made my day. As Homer Simpson would proclaim, "It's funny, because it's true!"


Meanwhile, the NHL grows a couple of hairy ones and comes down hard on Chris Simon with a 30-game suspension.

Hard enough? Hardly. Simon should have been gone for the season + playoffs. Now, if only the Isles would get rid of the thug once and for all ...


Over at the FanHouse ...

Aaron Miller scores his first goal in FOUR years! Sightings of flying pigs around Vancouver up 300%

Last night's 5-0 win over New Jersey was quite the pleasure to watch. I always enjoy seeing Martin Brodeur lit up like a rich man's Christmas tree, especially when it's guys like Miller and Linden blasting pucks by the man with the golden horseshoe up his arse.


Help us caption this photo of some ashamed Capitals fans. I know they don't have Crosby, but should Caps fans really be so afraid to show their faces in public?


Speaking of Sidney Crosby, he's no match for the power of the Canadian dollar. Sorry, Sid, but you don't make my eBay purchases cheaper.

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Tuesday, December 18, 2007


Selected Statistic Sampling

by Jes

A look around the NHL at a hodge podge of statistical odds and sods

  • I don't believe in the "Great player on a crappy team" argument for awarding the Hart Trophy (MVP), but one can certainly see just how valuable Alexander Ovechkin is to the (mis)fortune of the Washington Capitals.

    19% - The percentage of Washington shots have come off of the stick of Ovy.
    27% - 24 of the 88 Capital goals have been scored by Ovechkin. No surprise.
    44% - Add in his assists, and Ovechkin has had a hand in 39 of the 88 Capitals' goals. Almost half!
    +4 - Yep, Alex has the best +/- figure on the team, and is just one of four players to be on the positive side of the ledger.

  • Cy Young Award Nominee: Brad Boyes, the talented young St. Louis Blues forward with 19 goals and 9 assists in 30 games. Even since being move to the wing, he's been more selfish (in a good way) and productive.
  • A real plus: Dany Heatley leads the NHL with a whopping +27, eight better than runner-up Nick Lidstrom.
  • Patrick Sharp-shooter: Patrick Sharp (who?), the Blackhawks forward, has been one of the NHL's unsung heroes this season with 25 points in 30 games. His career high prior to this season? 35 points. The most interesting thing is that Patrick Sharp has FIVE shorthanded goals so far this season, and is on pace to break double digits. Yowsa!
  • Speaking of shorties, only the Florida Panthers and Carolina Hurricanes have yet to score a shorthanded goal this season. While the Panthers' PK has been solid, the Hurricanes can add insult to that injury be also having the worst PK unit in the league, killing penalties at a putrid 75.3%.
  • What's the biggest +/- disparity on a single team? I look and see the Red Wings have one of 26 with Nick Lidstrom sitting at +18 and Dallas Drake sitting at -8. The St. Louis blues have one of 23, with Eric Brewer at +10 and Barret Jackman at -13. Of course, the above mentioned Dany Heatley and any Senator at -1 is a disparity of 28, but that feels like cheating.
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    Monday, December 17, 2007


    The IIHF is Whining for More Money

    by Jes

    The IIHF recently raised more eyebrows when it gave notice to the NHL that it wanted to re-open the NHL/IIHF agreement and get better terms for European clubs.

    Rene Fasel, IIHF President and corrupt Olympic Committee official, gave an interview which highlights the views of his organization.

    There are a few major objections that they have addressed. First, nobody likes the situation where a vast majority of the European players who sign NHL contracts don’t play in the NHL, but instead are demoted to various minor leagues. This is detrimental to player development and to the European leagues. If a player is not NHL-ready he should stay in his home environment and develop until he is ready.

    WRONG! The NHL, and North American game, is seriously different from the European game. Playing for longer in Europe does not always help a player adapt to the NHL. Just ask Jaroslav Hlinka, one of Europe's brightest stars that have had loads of trouble adapting to the NHL. Same goes for Jiri Dopita, Pavel Patera, Martin Prochazka, and other such players.

    Look, North American players have to often pay their dues in the AHL, so why shouldn't European players do the same? If a guy like Hlinka had played in the AHL at a younger age, he'd likely be a boffo NHL player by now.

    Having players in the AHL is detrimental only to the European leagues, and to the egos of European players who are used to more money, better work schedules, and more fan praise that they get back home.

    Just look at the signings prior to this season. There were 59 European players who signed NHL contracts for 2007-2008. Seven have been returned to their European clubs, 46 are in the North American minor leagues and only six play in the NHL. To have six players, you don’t need to sign 59.

    Signing an NHL contract ... what a poor term to use. You can sign an NHL contract and still play in juniors, Europe, or the AHL. It doesn't mean you will be going to the NHL RIGHT NOW.

    It also speaks to, again, the above fact that European players are less likely to put up with playing in the AHL.

    Let's face it, every NHL team signs many NHL contracts, but not all of them turn into useful NHL players. That's just the nature of the business.

    So very little is actually about the money?

    Correct. It’s basically about player development, being able to plan your season and to secure the value of the transfer money.

    What a load of crap! This is ALL about money, and everyone knows it. European leagues are sick of losing their players and getting a pittance for it. Why not just come out and say you guys want more money?

    Going back to the number of Europeans who sign NHL contracts but end up in the minors – is that really a bad thing?

    Yes, it’s bad for everyone. There are four losers in any signing of a player who is not NHL-ready. 1. The player. Our studies show that a player is better off if he stays at home and develops in his environment. All the best Europeans in the NHL are those who stay at home until they are NHL-ready and they go straight to the NHL club. They don’t need “seasoning” in the minors. 2. His European club. For obvious reasons, the club loses a player who could stay another year or two or three and be a marquee player. 3. The NHL club. Instead of getting a good player who is ready to go, it brings him over too early, and very often the player does not reach his potential after a long period in the minors. 4. The North American system. For every European who takes up a spot on a farm team, that developmental position could have been offered to a player from the Canadian junior league or U.S. college.

    More Fasel crap

    1. What studies? Can I see them? As I've shown, players are often worse off if they stay at home too long, rather than coming to North America. Very few players can jump into the NHL at an advanced age without some minor-league conditioning.

    The most important DEVELOPMENT tool is to get lots of ice time and get accustomed to the North American game. I see top prospects in the Czech Extraleague who get 3rd or 4th line ice time. They could be over in North American learning 'our' game and getting more ice time on the farm or in the CHL.

    2. European club - OK, that's obvious. We know the IIHF is trying to protect its leagues, and it has every right to do so.

    3. The NHL club would benefit if these players would come over and STAY over. If a player doesn't reach their full potential in the minors, it's more about the player just lacking NHL-calibre skill than anything the NHL club does. Not every player that is drafted is going to make the NHL. This has nothing to do with where they play.

    4. ALL North American leagues, especially the CHL, have expanded so much that they NEED European talent. There simply isn't enough great talent from our own continent to support all of the expansion. A European player will take a spot only from a 4th-line grinder/tweener that won't be exactly missed.

    Besides, plenty of North Americans play in Europe. Should we say they are taking jobs away from Europeans?

    In the end, this is a money grab and Fasel should STFU about 'development'.

    1. In today's economy, people play and work in all parts of the world. Players should have every right to play and work where they want without other people holding their 'rights'

    2. Players are better off getting North American-style development if they want to play in the NHL. This isn't true for all players, but it is true for many players.

    3. There are only so many NHL spots, and many players won't make it, European or otherwise. To say it's the fault of the NHL is silly. Unless the NHL expands to 300 teams, a lot of Europeans will simply not be good enough to make the show.

    4. I don't mind that the IIHF is trying to protect its members, and I don't like it when Czech and Slovak teams get raided. I just wish the IIHF would be more forthcoming about that reason instead of trying to draw sympathy by playing the 'development' card.

    The NHL is not the BAD guy here. They are a well-paying league that offers the chance to play in front of large crowds and play against the top players in the world. If other leagues, such as the Russian Superleague tries to do, paid so well, players would play there, if given the chance. That's just how the economy works.

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    Sunday, December 16, 2007


    Chris Simon, Professional Thug

    by Jes

    Chris Simon is one of those 'puck-optional' players in the NHL. It doesn't matter what is happening with the puck, Simon's job is simply to inflict physical pain and suffering on the opposing team. Simon isn't out there to score goals, or do anything useful.

    Last night, Chris Simon did a very dangerous thing and tried to scalp Jarkko Ruutu with his skate blade.

    Let's not forget the vicious lumberjack chop on Ryan Hollweg after being hit, cleanly, by the Rangers winger.

    ... or this whack job on Sergei Fedorov ...

    Given his past history, and what could have happened to Ruutu, Simon should get AT LEAST 20 games. Unfortunately, he'll get 1-2, at most, knowing how soft the NHL is.

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    Saturday, December 15, 2007


    Video of the Day: Snoop Dogg, Hockey Savant

    by Jes

    In my line of work, I've dealt with many English dialects over the years: Canadian English, British English, Scottish English, Texan English, Floridian English, Midwest English, and Boston English. Still, there are other dialects I have yet to fully experience, such as Snoop Dogg's Ebonics.

    Check out Snoopy as he and Willie O'Ree are interviewed during the intermission of the lastest Ducks/Canucks game.

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    Friday, December 14, 2007


    Mike Richards' Lifetime Contract

    by Jes

    I thought it was just the New York Islanders that handed out insane long-term deals. 10 years for Yashin, 15 years for DiPietro, any amount of years for GM Garth Snow ... and then the Philadelphia Flyers come along and join the game to see who can make the bat-shit craziest deal of them all.

    Mike Richards, a pretty decent young player, is, apparently, so good that the Flyers wanted to own his soul for eternity.

    Centre Mike Richards, who has emerged as one of the league's top two-way forwards this season, has signed a contract extension with the Philadelphia Flyers.

    "I want to be here, I love the city, I love the organization and when I was given the opportunity I was excited to be here over the next twelve years," Richards relayed to the Associated Press.

    TSN has learned it is a 12-year extension for $69 million that averages out at $5.75 million per year for the cap hit.

    "It is a unique contract for a unique player," said Pat Morris, the agent that represents Richards, told the Associated Press. "I don't think that it will set off a trend for other players by any means."
    A unique contract? Mr. DiPietro says 'Hi'.

    A unique player? There are lots of players similar to Richards. Sidney Crosby, he is not.

    Now, Richards will be 34-35 when this deal runs out, which is essentially his playing career. to that effect, This is truly a lifetime contract.

    Now, I know some GM's are afraid of losing their bright young stars, but this seems just a tad silly. If I am a GM, I'd like to have flexibility, and who knows what could go wrong in TWELVE fricking years.

    I can also see the benefit of such a deal, given that Richards is a piece of prime rib and by the end of this contact, $5mil will probably be a paltry sum as inflation rate skyrocket.

    Whatdya think? Smart or crazy?

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    Wednesday, December 12, 2007


    The Beatty Connection

    by Greg

    Jes gently suggested that perhaps I might write something for this blog, to, you know, justify the fact that my name still appears on it. So I was all set to write something up about the Thrashers' pickup of Mark Recchi, how it was a ridiculous desperation move, Recchi's done, etc etc. Then I got busy with errands this morning, busy with work this evening, it never got done, and Recchi's scored two goals (so far) in tonight's game. So I kind of dodged a bullet there. Waddell's a genius, I tip my hat to him, and so forth.

    Unfortunately, that leaves me really without any post (unless I want to switch gears really fast and praise the Recchi pickup), since I've been too busy to really take note of hockey in three or four weeks. I know Milan Hejduk had an amazing game, HC Zlin signed Tomas Kloucek for the full season (good move, chaps!), but beyond that... anything? Sidney Crosby made his first appearance in Western Canada, which I gather was the most important thing to happen since independence, but...

    So instead, the lamest of all possible posts after an absence measured in weeks: separated at birth. Last weekend, I watched the first half or so of Warren Beatty's umpteen-hour epic, "Reds." Every time Beatty (as John Reed) was on screen, I was a bit bothered by a nagging sense of familiarity, but I couldn't place it.

    Beatty, right

    Tonight, I was looking at the HC Zlin web page, hoping for Kloucek news (and hoping I'd magically learned Czech, so that I could read the Kloucek news), when it hit me:

    Erstwhile Hockey Rants favorite Jaroslav Balastik!

    Ok, that's all I've got. Go Thrashers! Go Recchi!

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    The NHL is Secretly Testing the Thermablades

    by Jes

    Back in mid-October, I ranted about the prospect of a new, heated skate blade (The Thermablade), which would help melt the ice a bit so that players could skate faster.

    Obviously, I'm not a big fan of adding mechanical elements to the game, as it'll turn the sport more into a NASCAR-type sport, where it's more about the equipment and machinery, rather than the more 'pure' sport we've come to expect.

    Now, I realize that all of today's equipment has been enhanced from ye olde days, such as composite sticks and Kevlar, but it still requires the play to actually, you know, do everything mechanically. The heated skate blades? The equipment, itself, is doing work, even when the player is not.

    A stick by itself is just a stick, same with a shin pad. The Thermablade? It works on its own, and could set a dangerous precedent. I mean, are we going to allow goaltenders to have motion detectors so they can find pucks they normally can't see? Should we allow golfers to have springs in their clubs that give their shots an extra 30 feet?

    Well, it appears the NHL has been secretly testing the new Thermablade, and wants to ramp up their efforts ...

    Heated skate blades that are supposed to enhance performance are being used by four anonymous NHL players.

    The four teams they play for asked that their names be kept secret so the Thermablades on their feet didn't draw media attention and their use become a distraction, says Kris King, the NHL's Toronto-based senior manager of hockey operations.

    King says he's found no problems after conducting follow-ups with the four players who have been skating on them for several weeks now and their equipment managers. He's waiting for the players' association to complete its evaluation. The two groups will then huddle and decide whether to conduct further tests in conjunction with the company.

    "We've looked at this from a safety concern," says King. "When you start putting battery packs and holders in the skate blade, we want to make sure the high-impact shots being taken don't lead to small pieces laying on the ice".

    "From what I gather from my talks, I don't believe it to be a safety concern."
    To stress a point I made before, we know that NHL ice surfaces run into problems, especially in warmer climates, of staying fresh and free of slushiness. Bringing heated skate blades into the equation should only cause the ice to melt and get chopped up even faster, possibly leading to more groin injuries and more bouncing picks.

    Does the NHL really need to open up this can of worms? Have they ever watched the Terminator series? :) Besides, do we want to contribute to Global Warming? *yuk yuk*

    *** Help me caption this photo of Emilio Estevez over at the NHL FanHouse. C'mon, people, get your caption caps on!

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    Tuesday, December 11, 2007


    Human Environmental Impact: It's no Myth.

    Allow me to get on a non-hockey rant as I go off on the topic of the environment. Inspired by a conversation with Wayne, our Southern correspondent.

    The NHLPA recently signed an agreement with David Suzuki to go 'carbon neutral'. While I think carbon credits are merely a sham that allow people to feel guilt-free while polluting at the same time, it's definitely a good first step. It's about time that sports leagues starting noticing that the extensive travel comes at an environmental cost.

    Now, there are those who claim that 'Global Warming' is a myth, CO2 is not a pollutant, and that humans really haven't damaged the environment all that much.

    Sounds silly, doesn't it? Unfortunately, too many people seem to think this way, and that needs to change.

    In the spirit of Glenn Beck (ugh), here is what I do know.

  • Yes, global warming and cooling is a naturally-occurring phenomenon, and this allows the 'deniers' to jump up and down and say, "See, it's not OUR fault". This is akin to saying breast implants aren't fake, because silicon is a natural element of our planet. Uh-huh.

    So, stop using Global Warming, which is a very generic term, and think of terms of the overall pollution that humans generate. Oil spills and fish farms don't contribute to global warming, per se, but they certainly damage the environment painfully. (On another note, do NOT buy BC-grown farmed salmon. Kthx)

  • Do a little research and find out about the authors of these 'denier' studies. You will notice who funds their research. The Cato Institute is a big sponsor of such studies, and the oil companies are a BIG sponsor of the Cato Institute. None of the scientists who is a climate change denier is doing this on their lonesome because of 'good science'.

  • The fact is that we should NOT be using old technology for our automobiles. Why is that we can have cell phones that allow you to watch movies, and we've had exponential growth of technology in the computer industry, but we still use a combustible engine that was invented decades before we were born? Simply put, the gov't (taxes), oil companies, and car companies don't want us to switch. If somebody invents a cleaner technology, and many have, the cartel buys it up and locks it in a vault.

    Occasionally, the cartel will let some new tech out of the bag, but won't put any effort into marketing the product, and wait for it to fail. Then, they can justify that 'nobody wants it', even though people do.

    The movie Who Killed the Electric Car? has a great example of how people in California weren't even allowed to KEEP their new-tech vehicles because the car company wouldn't allow it.

    Due to the taxes, capital cost, and high revenues, the Triad does not want us to have cleaner-burning fuels. All of their 'efforts' are simply PR bullshit that allows them to keep raping our environment while making huge profits. They'll hold out as long as possible as long as the general public remains apathetic and disinterested. People are too lazy to change their lifestyles, including YOU.

  • Let's face it, humans are a wasteful species, and create a lot of waste from their lifestyles. North Americans, especially, are the worst of the lot (I'm no exception). Think about what you consume and do on an average day. Think of how much packaging is required for your food and drink?

    Fossil fuels? Plastic wrapping? eating food? Yes, those things require a lot of energy and resources, and then you have a lot of garbage left over. Think of the fuel that is needed to transport your milk, oranges, meats, and so on. The fact that anyone could claim that humans aren't environmentally damaging in their everyday lines is absolutely insane and delusional.

  • The worst argument is when the governments claims that being environmentally friendly will 'hurt the economy'. So, money, simply a tool for trade, is more important than having an inhabitable planet? Are humans really that greedy that they'll sacrifice the health of their environment for money? We know the answer, and it speaks to the human race's downfall. Just watch as your government does all it can to support the oil/car companies and stop any environmentally-friendly bills from being passed. Yet, all people talk about is the war in Iraq. Kinda shows you our priorities, eh?

    Oh, kiddies, don't worry about the planet. Mother Nature will be just fine. It's been here millions of years before humans, and will be here millions of years after humans. It will adapt and survive.

    No, you should be worried about humanity. Eventually, our species will help make the planet so unlivable that we'll eventually go extinct. The planet will simply watch as new life forms evolve, and probably be happy that it won't have to deal with being fucked around with all the time.
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    Sunday, December 09, 2007


    Photo of the Day: Crosby Gets Pwned!

    by Jes

    Sidney Crosby isn't exactly great at penalty shots, and last night was no exception as Luongo stoned him during OT and in the regular shootout.

    (Be sure to check out The NHL FanHouse for the video clip)

    I love the reaction of Sid and the fans in this photo after Luongo stoned the kid :)

    (c) Getty Images, 2007

    Between my 'love' for Sid and my loyalty as a Canucks fan, I was rather torn last night. I'm glad both teams got at least a point.

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    Saturday, December 08, 2007


    Video of the Day: Gaborik can Fly!

    by Jes

    Marian Gaborik is looking to score a breakaway goal against Dominik Hasek, but the Dominator has other plays.

    Up, up, and away!!!

    I'm a little disturbed that Hasek could have taken out the knees of Gaborik and caused some injury. If a regular player slid-tackled Gaborik, they'd likely get a bit more of a penalty. I realize Hasek is a goalie and has the job of stopping the puck, so I'll let it slide.

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    Friday, December 07, 2007


    The Sidney Crosby West Coast Tour 2007!!!

    by Jes

    As someone who has a blog dedicated to all things Sidney Crosby, I am not surprised at the hype that surrounds the kid, as we know the media has continually gone gaga over the young prodigy.

    What does surprise me, however, is the level of media hype that has accompanied Crosby as he tours the West Coast for the first time in his young career. Yes, the weird schedule meant that we had to wait until Year 3 to see Crosby play in Vancouver.

    As Crosby has been in the league for some time, you'd expect the media coverage to die down a little, now that we've seen the kid quite often and there aren't many new stories that you can write. Still, do a Google News search for Sidney Crosby and you'll see countless articles about his West Coast Tour. Every media outlet west of Winnipeg has 3-4 guys writing Sidney Crosby stories, as if people in Vancouver or Calgary have never heard of the guy. I look in today's Province newspaper (aka Vancouver birdcage liner) and see FIVE whole pages of nothing but Sid. There are even contests to win Sidney merchandise (sign me up, Scotty!)

    It's obvious that Crosby has that rock star aura, at least in the eyes of the media. Radio talk shows, newspapers, blogs, TV shows... it's all Crosby, all the time. Ovechkin got some pub when he came out West, but it was nothing near what we're getting pounded with now. I'm quite surprised that I haven't learned what brand of underarm deodorant the kid uses, or if he prefers brunettes over blondes.

    The one thing pisses me off is how the media is trying to tie Sidney Crosby and Wayne Gretzky together. Ever since Gretzky came out and said Sid would break his records, the media want to lump these two together for all time.

    Let's see here ... Crosby and Gretzky don't really know each other, don't regularly talk to each other (once a year, at most), don't play in the same conference, don't even play the same style of game, and play in completely different eras. Other than the fact that they both rake in millions$$$ in endorsements and get a crapload of publicity, you cannot really compare the two men. Sidney's playing style has always been more Forsberg than Gretzky, and today's era will never allow somebody to get close to 200 points a season. Hell, achieving 100 points in a season is pretty frickin' incredible these days.

    All in all, despite the fact I may sound like a grumpy old man, I am pleased to see the hype and I think it's good for the league. Any time the fans can get excited about a player coming to their town, it generates more interest in the game and will draw more attention to, what would otherwise be, another regular season game in the middle of December.


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    Thursday, December 06, 2007


    Bertuzzi: "The Devil Made Me Do It!"

    by Jes

    This Steve Moore story refuses to die, and now we are getting some juicy tidbits about Marc Crawford's involvement in the whole affair.

    There have always been rumours that Marc Crawford instructed Todd Bertuzzi to make the hit on Moore, but this was pure speculation, and nothing has ever been proven.

    Now, we learn that Bertuzzi testified, under oath, that Crawford did, indeed, tell him to layeth the smacketh down on the yappy ex-Avalanche forward.

    A statement of claim filed in Ontario court by Moore's lawyer and obtained by CBC alleges that Crawford pointed to Moore's name and number on a board in the Canucks dressing room during the second intermission of that game and said ". . . (Moore) must pay the price."

    In an accompanying document, Moore's lawyer claims Crawford's statement was disclosed by Bertuzzi while under oath, and by Canucks GM Dave Nonis

    A few thoughts that are oozing out of my thick skull right about now

    1. Where was Bertuzzi's brain in all of this? He didn't HAVE to do anything, and could have easily just laid a solid bodycheck, or told Moore a few choice mama jokes, rather than attack him from behind. Obviously, Bertuzzi made the conscious decision to attack Moore, and didn't exactly step back and say "Hey, wait a minute ... "

    2. If the rumours are true, this could explain why Bertuzzi could do no wrong in Crawford's eyes. Remember Bertuzzi's last season with the Canucks, when the grumpy bear simply cruised around and didn't break a sweat? While Crawford chewed out most any other play for not playing hellbent-hard, Bertuzzi simply did not get taken to task. If Crawford felt some sort of guilt or responsibility for the trouble Bertuzzi got in, he probably felt that he couldn't criticize his star winger for blowing his umpteenth defensive assignment.

    3. Crawford's Kings are doing awful, and his coaching, to me, hasn't been very good the past few years. As more details come out about this case, Crawford could easily lose his job, and have loads of trouble finding another. I won't say he's be blacklisted, but I'm sure he wouldn't get a lot of calls for job interviews.

    4. In that regard, if Crawford is fired as coach of the Kings, would CBC really want him back? Crawford was great with the CBC as an analyst, but I can't see the 'ceeb' wanting to put up with the backlash for hiring 'the guy who ordered the hit'

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    Wednesday, December 05, 2007


    Sean Avery: Rejected!

    by Jes

    Despite the fact that Sean Avery seems to score a lot of celebrity ass, it appears that his fame and name recognition doesn't go as far as the yappy winger seems to think it does.

    From the New York Daily News, we get the real scoop ...

    The New York Rangers celebrated their 5-2 victory over the Ottawa Senators Saturday night at Bungalow 8, where injured forward Sean Avery showed up with a sling on one hand and black nail polish on the other. The Blueshirts had originally hit up Buddha Bar but were denied entrance.

    "F- this place! We're never coming here again!" screamed the Rangers' flack when the bouncer said he didn't know or care who the hometown heroes were. Guess he's an Isles fan!
    ... or, perhaps the bouncer did know who Sean Avery was, and wanted to deliver a nice blow to Sean's massive ego. OH!

    and black nail polish? Has he been letting Mary-Kate paint his fingernails?

    Oh, the rest of the NHL has so much good stuff to use against Avery the next time the little bitch starts flapping his gums.

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    Tuesday, December 04, 2007


    Buy Yourself a Spot on the Canucks!

    by Jes

    The Vancouver Canucks are auctioning off the privilege of dressing as a Vancouver Canuck and being a member of the team for a day.

    Relax! You wouldn't actually get to play a shift with the Sedins, or Alex Burrows. Instead, the Canucks are auctioning off a spot in their team photo.

    Yes, THE team photo. The current bid is US$ 1,500, which is about how much James Mirtle makes in the average week.

    Be a part of the Canucks team photo at the end of the 2007/08 season! This package includes one 8x10 copy of the team photo and a replica jersey to wear in the photograph.

    Funds raised through this online Dice & Ice auction will benefit Canuck Place Children's Hospice and BC Children's Hospital Child & Adolescent Mental Health Building.

    Years from now, I can just picture a kid and his grampa looking at the 2007/08 Canucks team photo

    Kid: Grampy, who's that ugly looking guy on the left?

    Gramps: Oh, just some random schmuck who paid the team to be there.

    I guess it doesn't really matter who is in the team photo, since there are lot of guys (trainers, front office staff, etc) in the photo that I really don’t know, but it does seem kind of lame that some guy off the street can basically get himself into the picture and have nothing to do with the team. It's supposed to be a TEAM photo, right?

    I hope the winner does something to make the auction worth his while, like wearing a clown wig, making a really nasty face, or wearing a Blues cap.

    (hat tip to 'Going Five Hole')

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    Monday, December 03, 2007


    Michal Repik Gets Rocked

    by Jes

    I've heard about all sorts of new injuries thanks to my many years following hockey. ACL tears, MCL tears, ruptured spleens, third grade concussions, etc...

    A broken eardrum, however, is not one you'd ever expect to see in the game of hockey.

    Unfortunately for Giants fans, Michal Repik appears to have suffered a broken eardrum (ouch!) thanks to a hit by the Everett Silvertips' Dane Crowley.

    Repik was on the receiving end of a dangerous hit late in the Vancouver Giants 7-0 whitewashing of the Everett Silvertips on Saturday. The Giants winger and leading scorer was circling behind the Silvertips net and had just dished off a backhand pass when Crowley caught Repik admiring his nifty setup. Repik's helmet went flying and the back of his head hit and the Czech import remained motionless on the ice for a short while before being carried off the ice on a stretcher. He was taken directly to hospital, where he remained until today.

    Now, I haven't seen a replay of the hit, so I can't comment on whether the hit was dirty or not.

    It's just too bad that the Giants, and the Czech Republic, will be without the services of this fine winger. With the World Junior Championships in Czechia this year, you can be sure that Repik was fired up to lead the Czechs in that tourney.

    I also wonder if this injury will have long-term repercussions on Repik's game. He's been a man on a mission since the beginning of last year's postseason. Already, Repik has 39 points in 30 games this season, and has been utilizing his speed on a nightly basis. Unlike past seasons, Repik seems to want to take charge and play hard just about every single night. It's not a stretch to compare him to the likes of Milan Hejduk or Marek Svatos.

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    Saturday, December 01, 2007


    The NHL's Overpaid Schmucks

    by Jes

    Over at his blog, James Mirtle highlighted a group of the NHL's Unsung Heroes. Let's face it, guys like Greg Zanon deserve a little more appreciation. Jan Hejda? Remember, Hockey Rants highlighted this guy's mad skillz before, and you mortals still don't worship him nearly enough.

    Well, as much as we love a warm and fuzzy story, I'm a much more bitter guy. I'd rather highlight the players that are making boatloads of cash and sucking eggs at the same time. Feel-bad features are more my thing, right?

    So, here's a list of players that deserve to be booed, egged, and heckled.

    Todd Bertuzzi, Anaheim - 13GP 1-5-6PTS -3
    Do I really need to say more about this lazy ogre? He rarely breaks a sweat, routinely lets his checks go (Markus Naslund is thanking him right about now), and gets paid $4mil/season to do so.

    Dustin Penner, Edmonton - 26GP 4-8-12PTS
    I realize that Kevin Lowe put Penner into a position to 'fail', giving up the farm for a second-line winger who hadn't proven himself.

    The problem I see is that Penner has a bit too much Bertuzzi in him, in that Penner jut cruises far too often and isn't nearly as assertive as he should be. Was less than half-a-point a game really worth all that?

    Patrik Elias - 23GP 4-8-12PTS -6
    I don't get it. Elias has been bad at both ends of the ice, which is very unusual for him. Combine these awful stats with a $6mil salary and you get a bad payoff on your return.

    It's not like there are any positive signs, either. Elias was actually worse in November (5 points) than he was in October (7 points).

    Michael Ryder - 25GP 3-7-10PTS -2
    Remember when this guy used to be good? Well, last year has had a god-awful -25, but at least he put up some offense with 58 points. This season, he's doing rather BLAH at both ends of the ice, and makes enough money to buy my condo 10 times over. He's gone from core player to support player in a short time.

    Miikka Kiprusoff - 25GP 10-11-3 2.96GAA 88.5SV%
    It's kinda funny how Calgary gave this guy a big fat contract extension despite the fact that he's having, by far, his worst season ever. Kipper has been the weak point of the Flames this season, and doesn't get along well with coach Keenan. (then again, many players don't)

    Let's face facts, people. Kiprusoff has been one of the NHL's worst #1 goalies this season, and he's getting paid some big bucks. The Flames aren't getting their money's worth.

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