D.C.'s Capital Dome looks like a giant boob

The lads finally get to come home and stick around for a little while now. The whole city, at least according to the Sun/Province, seems to be gaa-gaa over Ovechkin's mere presence within the city boundaries. While having not seen much of the Caps play this year (or the past few seasons for that matter) I think the teams are fairly even with the overall tilt going to Vancouver because of their goaltending and talent on the top two lines: basically the Sedins, Nazzy, Morrison, Pyatt and Kesler (or the interchangeable Bulis if he hasn't pissed off Vigneault again by the time the puck drops) verse Ovechkin, Zubrus, Clark, Semin, Sutherby and Zednik. I forgot the Caps have my boy Brashear too but, honestly, I have no real comment to add on that other then he'll win if any Canuck really feels like scrapping. As for Kolzig and Luongo? With all apologies to the German state, I'll side with the latter.

Barring a complete change in the Canucks style of play, this game could come down to special teams (which isn't a terribly great sign for Vancouver). I'm willing to guess the powerplay will click again tonight and that could be the deciding factor.

Predicted Score: 3-2 Canucks. One of the Sedins scores and Kesler gets his first too. Bulis has a better game and stays out of the box which results in him getting a large colorful lollipop and a gentle pat on the head from Nonis, not unlike the same gesture one would give a puppy for not pissing on the new rug.

Pithy Thought: Why has no reporter (and maybe one did and I missed it) stood right in the face of the ever clownish Janne Niinimaa and ask something like "So Janne, about that prediction of beating the Sabres on Monday…you lost 4-1 and you, specifically, were a complete and utter non-factor. To speak nothing of your career stats that are steadily going into the toilet and your mighty single point for this season which pales a bit in contrast with Mike Ribeiro’s start…oh, Ribeiro? You were traded for him a few weeks ago. I know, huge laugher for the Stars huh? Anyway, all things considered, does it concern you that your career has become virtually irrelevant and at this point you’d be a better contributor to your team if you resigned and sold Hab Christmas trinkets from a paper bag outside the stadium parking lot?”


Blow up the outside world

I'm not a fan of Sean Avery. I truly dislike him and the fact that he happens to get a fat paycheck for piss poor play while whoring himself across the LA basin is enough to make me both jealous and furious. I eagerly look forward to him getting checked through the stratosphere by the likes of anyone from Derek Boogaard to Brian Gionta.

But, that said, I will applaud Avery's opinion of arena music. I care not what sales figures, radioplay and your average teenager thinks, Nickelback and Kelly Clarkson do royally suck.

Texans wear capri pants

Last night was frustrating...frustrating...frustrating. Canucks should have won but the bounces simply did not go their way. They owned that second period and even the Dallas broadcasters were damn near laughing at the fact they couldn't believe how many odd man rushes Vancouver was generating through (…brace yourself…) Vancouver's forechecking and overall work ethic. So, if such a thing as a good loss exists, last night could be it. Dallas is off to their best start ever and Vancouver kept them in check for the majority of the game. If Luongo could have that fluke goal back, that was a Canuck victory. (But hey, Luongo did play very well regardless and at least he wasn't pulled after getting shelled like both Cloutier and Auld were last night. Not that I'm paying attention to that at all.)

On the plus side, players like Bieska and Krajicek are still playing well despite the occasional bad penalty. And a big shout out for Alexandre Burrows who tried to spark his team by running at both Barnaby (which resulted in a fight) and even Lindros which is a monumental mismatch for Burrows unless he was going to swat him in the head with a lead pipe. That's great effort and the type of play Vancouver sorely needs in tight games.

Let's see if the Canucks can end this road trip on a positive note by putting a few more Blackhawks in the infirmary on Wednesday. No no, that's just mean. And, besides, they already took out McKee.


Clarke to pump gas or flip burgers now?

I would be lying if I said this bothered me, but in light of how the Kesler situation has backed Vancouver into a financial corner, it's somewhat endearing to see Bobby Clarke - finally - admit complete and total failure as a GM.

Paybacks ARE quite the bitch
, huh?

The next best thing would be he ends up in the asylum that is the Islanders organization. Just for fun.


Former 'nucks in faraway lands

Who knew I'd get bored with only two days off between games? Thanks to my NHL Center Ice package though, I've been checking out some the teams that are now icing former Canuck players who were supposed to have taken this team to the promised land and beyond. So, enough talk of Luongo, the Sedins and "Mr. 301" Naslund for now, let's take a look at how this early NHL season is treating:

Alex Auld
At 3-1-1, Auldy is playing as we Vancouver fans likely guessed he would. He's a good goalie but, like Cloutier (who we'll get to shortly), was prone to mental hiccups, giant rebounds and the occasional boneheaded play that would make you punch a wall. Sadly, my first real view of Auld this season came last night as Semin and the Caps just abused him for four first period goals before he got yanked for Ed "shit he's still playing?" Belfour. Auld's poor game lowered his GAA to 3.10, or rather 24th in the league. So Auld is still doing his thing...almost unbeatable in Toronto last week and Swiss cheese this week.

Dan Cloutier
Speaking of Swiss cheese, Cloutier has a new mask, a new team and the same coach down in the land of fake breasts and mudslides. Sadly for Cloutier, at least Auld has some semblance of a team in front of him; the Kings, rather, have Blake, rookie rockstar Kopitar, Visnovsky, Frolov...and purple uniforms. That can't bode well for a goalie like Dan who is known to implode with little to no warning. So far, Dan is 1-3-1 on the year with a GAA of 3.02 (that's 23rd in the league, right next to Auld. Aww, sweet irony). It's going to be a long year for the Kings (to speak nothing of the fact they are fighting for Cali bragging rights with the likes of the Sharks and Ducks) so Dan may want to start eyeing a backup career in his free time and, as a former inhabitant of LA, my suggestion would be porn. Danny Cloutier in "A Goalie and 5 Holes"? Great, I'm going to hell now...

Ed Jovanovski
Down in the desert, the 2-4-0 Phoenix Dogs are likely still smarting from a rather comical 9-2 blowout to the Red Wings last week. But Jovo has two goals and two assists and, shockingly, is +2 on the season with just 6 PIMs. I was willing to bet, before I looked, that he would have been -10 by now but maybe he's learning (or injured, you can never tell). Some really smart pundits out there thought Phoenix would be a dark horse to watch this year and they very well still could be, but it's been a rough start so far and they have two key injuries (Reinprecht & Ballard) already so whenever the perennial Jovocop injury comes around it'll only hamper them more.

Bryan Allen
Being one of the defensive rocks in front of Auld, Allen is currently tied for the most Panther PIM's (guess who he's tied with...c'mon, just guess), but his offense has been limited to a single assist and he's -3 early on. But hey, Salei, Bouwmeester, Mezei and Jackman are all suffering in the plus/minus category as well so Allen's keeping with the Panther defensive concept that Luongo was used to for years; namely "we have a goalie back there so quit worrying so much".

Nolan Baumgartner
Oye...the Philly braintrust and local papers talked this guy up like he was a great first round pick (wait, he was a first rounder. Never mind) all summer. But $1.2 million is a bit steep for a guy with one assist and a whopping 21 PIM's (maybe it's that stat which led Clarke, despite trying to shake him loose on waivers, to keep him around should no team take him). The Flyers are tied for the worst team in the league right now and who knows what's going to happen night to night, so it's a safe assumption that Nolan may just miss his evenings manning the powerplay with Ohlund. Who knows.

Jarkko Ruutu
The Penguins have a really fun team with Crosby and Malkin and, if someone is going to take a run at either star, they'll have to deal with our favor former superpest. Jarkko has one goal and one assist on the season and 10 PIM's so he's doing about what I'm sure the Pens expected of him. When watching the Devils/Pens game last night, during a strange moment of silence, Mike Emerick noted that Ruutu has many enemies around the league. And he wasn't even on the ice! See? That's why I miss Ruutu. Hilarious.

Anson Carter
This entire summer was spent seeing where the hell Carter would end up and, in a shocker, he ended up in Columbus who, sadly, have far more depth at forward then the Canucks do. That's where the praise for Carter ends; Zherdev's return from the Siberian coal mines pushed the former Sedin linemate down to the third line and likely reduced icetime. Carter so far has a single goal and is -1 with four PIM's. And I don't care what he or the Sedins say, the three of them would be better off having another season together. I can't say I'm crushed to see Carter toiling on the Blue Jackets third line...he can have his millions and I'll take schadenfreude.

Todd Bertuzzi
Last, but certainly not least, is big Bert or, as the media took the summer explaining again and again, "that guy who hit that other guy and seemed really moody ever since so he probably needs a fresh start in a state with lots of sun and the occasional CAT 5 hurricane". Bert’s had a great start with seven points (one goal, six assists) which is second best on the team. On the flip side, he's -4 so far (that's second worst) and tied with Allen for the most PIM's. Oddly, Bert also only has eight shots on net (the same as the vaunted sniper Salei does) so teams must be doing a great job of shutting him down. In last night's game Bertuzzi lost a battle for a puck the corner that allowed Matt Bradley to beat Belfour on the first shot he faced. So early reports would indicate Todd is still good ol’ #44.


487 ways to cry

I was hoping the hysterical minds at Divealanche.com would be all over this - and I think they will be at some point - but my morning musings brought me the news that Colorado, once the team that joined Detroit as THE teams to hate in the West, are not only shadows of their former dominant selves but now the fans have realized it to the point where their vaunted sell out streak came to a quiet end at 487.

Cue the sad music...like some Yanni or, if you're suicidal, K-Fed. The only downside to this is it actually gives Terry Frei more opportunity to get on his soapbox for the Denver Post.


Oil helps my car work

So it seems the Canucks, as anticipated, got shredded up a bit by a deeper San Jose squad in their opener last week. They get a chance at redemption tonight against Northwest rival Edmonton. Now, in years gone by, I would look favorably at an Oilers/Canucks because even if Vancouver lost it would be a fun game. This year it's a bit different as the Canucks are "retooling" while the Oilers are, well, "reloading". It could still be a good game though and here's why:

What to watch for #1: Secondary scoring. AGAIN. It's obvious this is going to dog Vancouver all year long. Guys like Morrison, Bulis, Kesler (and that is your second line tonight folks) & Cooke need to get cracking and support that top line. The Oilers won't have a similar problem with the likes of Sykora, Smyth, Hemsky (who is my favorite Oiler) and Horcoff buzzing around and I'm not even referencing guys like Torres, Pisani or Lupul. Getting Salo back will help Mitchell and Ohlund try and shut these guys down.

What to watch for #2: Goalie A'Reboundin. Luongo looked painfully human (close to Auld-esque) against the Sharks but we can blame the new pads he never used before the game. Or blame Al Qaeda and re-runs of Saved By The Bell on Saturday mornings. Did you know Screech is in a sex video? Seriously, someone tagged Screech. I wonder what he paid; honestly, the guy is a car wreck. Anyway, Luongo will need to get his game back against the Oilers since he'll see plenty of them this year and he'll likely be needed to steal a bunch of these games against Northwest opponents.

What to watch for #3: Home and home. If the Canucks implode tonight, look for Vigneault to kick a puppy and smack a school girl out of sheer anger at a third straight loss. If the Canucks take tonight, look for the Oilers to be pissed and come out swinging tomorrow night. The next six periods of Canucks hockey will be a great test to see if this team can become the cohesive unit Nonis envisioned when he dismantled the squad over the summer.

Who’s going to win? The Oilers tonight and Vancouver tomorrow. The Oil don't have a problem scoring and have a good winning streak going for them now. Granted they'll be a bit fatigued from Saturday night, but (and I don't know why) they will have more energy and vigor at the drop of the puck tonight. Assuming the Canucks keep it close, I see the Oilers winning 4-2. But, on the heels of that, Vancouver takes tomorrow's game by adopting some changes, staying out of the box, and frustrating them in the neutral zone. 3-1 Canucks on Tuesday.

Need something to get angry at? Keep in mind that if the Canucks drop both games to the Oilers, they'll likely be in last place in the division and it would propel the Oilers into a tie for first with the Wild who are currently one of two undefeated teams left in the league. Damn it all.


Whales & Sharks

The boys finally get a home game and a chance to let the locals get a rink side view of Luongo and, well, the rest of them. Sadly it comes with a revoltingly strong San Jose Shark squad visiting GM Place, but they will be playing their third game in five nights whereas Vancouver has been off since losing to the Wild in a shootout Tuesday night.

What to watch for #1: Secondary scoring. The Sharks top line of Smith, Thornton and Cheechoo have the luxury of taking a night off since their second line of Marleau, Michalek and Bernier can get the job done. Vancouver can't say the same; outside of the Sedin/Naslund line (you're on crack if you think I'm calling that the Ikea line) the likes of Morrison, Pyatt, Bulis, Kesler, Cooke et all have not truly got going yet (unless you count untimely netural zone penalties). Could tonight be that night? Something tells me no, but let's pretend the home crowd gives someone an extra reason to get pissed and productive.

What to watch for #2: The battered D line. Sami Salo has subscribed to the long list of guys who get wonky groins early in the season, so he'll be sitting tonight. The thin blueline just got a bit thinner and now has no choice but to point rely very heavily on Kevin Bieksa and rookie Luc Bourdon. Insert your favorite curse word here (bonus points if you can couple in a family member in the process and create an entirely new curse phrase: "father fucker", "uncle shitface", "cousin shittybitchhead". It's fun for the whole family, honestly).

What to watch for #3: Goalies. Roberto Luongo is clearly the man after four games. He has yet to be beaten in those oh so fun clear and unobstructed ways that Dan Cloutier’s GAA seems to suggest he is still excelling at. However, the Sharks can counter with not just one #1 goalie but two in Toskala and Nabakov. The latter got torn apart by the Oilers last night though so assume Toskala will be in net.

Who’s going to win? The Sharks. I will admit this is partly due to the fact I’m still used to the Canucks letting me down and this season they seem to be correcting that reflex. However, even a tired Sharks team is a formidable opponent and the Canucks scoring thus far has relied on their top line, seizing on opportunities during line changes or defensive mistakes by the other team. Vancouver’s D will be busy all night (Bourdon? Are you familiar with the phrase “trial by fire”?) so it’s imperative the Luongo plays out of his mind again while the defensemen have no mental hiccups. Vancouver only wins this game if all four lines contribute…by which I mean at least two or three lines contribute far more then the vague “team effort” contribution and, rather, put some pucks in the net and get on the scoresheet. Assuming the team concept is still a work in progress, I’ll give the edge to the Sharks.

Need something to get angry at? The damn Vancouver newspapers. I recognize sports columnists and sports radio (I work in radio, trust me) beat minor issues to death because content is content. But, seriously, this whole trap thing discussion is boring me. Is this what passes for fine editorial copy: stating the obvious? Of course the Canucks are going to trap from time to time and far more frequently then they used to. So what? If it works, then shut up. If it doesn’t, they’ll figure something else out. But claiming it gives you (or rather the collective ‘we’) a poor product is piss poor reasoning and proof that some people, clearly, can’t accept change.

If you want a run and gun game and that’s it, then please by all means go cover the Kings. They have Crawford, they have Cloutier, they have young fast rookies & they’ll play that game all year long. From what I can see, they have a staggering three more goals then the so called boring Canucks. I also seem to every playoff bound team past the first round last year had some sort of defensive-minded system over a cherry picking Pavel Bure mentality. So accept the winds of change (that’s right, I invoked a Scorpions song. I hope the chorus gets stuck in your head and you start inadvertently singing it) and move on.



...we've had a Taylor Pyatt sighting. I repeat, we've had a Taylor Pyatt sighting...he was last seen parking his arse in front of the net and scoring...you did not dream that...it actually happened...with one period left it's quite possible the other Goonie, Jan Bulis, will make an appearance...but breath = not held.

Update: Kesler got punished in the corner towards the end of the second frame and did his best 'boxer with the jimmy legs' impersonation trying to get off the ice. It would suck to lose him this early in the season, so hopefully he just had the wind smacked out of him, worst case would be a Lindros, er, concussion.

Final Update: Canucks cough it up in the shootout. Salo also went down with the dreaded strained G...R...O...I...N. We had a brief Jan Bulis sighting but it was only to fire the puck directly at Fernandez in the shootout. I wasn't aware Jan can actually fire the puck through goaltenders, who knew? The boys took 5 of 8 points on the road and now have to deal with the damn Sharks in their home opener on Friday. Christ...


Oh my...

Ummm...judging by the blonde in the stands on the left, I think Todd will really learn to love the South Florida lifestyle. As we all should...

Drunkblog: Canucks V Carter

Let's see...whiskey? Check. Coke? Check. NHL Center Ice? Check. Food? En route.

OK, it's time then. I just was subjected to the strange Blue Jackets (called henceforth BJ...snicker snicker) mascot skating around as their team was announced. I tuned out honestly...the puck drops shortly and drinking needs to be done.

7:14 PM - the lady singing the anthems is interesting. At first glance I thought she was hot. But then they zoomed in on her...I take it all back. Man, I made my drink strong. That or my standards are dropping. Either is a fair bet.

7:19 PM - Bieska takes an early penalty. And they score in three seconds. All the joy from last night is gone. I have to drink more now.

Now Luongo stops a two on one and then stones Carter who was all alone in front. I can't handle Carter scoring and listening to this crowd cheer. If Carter scores, I may need to kill something. Canucks look terrible right now.

7:33 PM - I think, as a public service, I need to start grading American broadcasters. These BJ guys are questionable, but not terrible just yet. The play by play guy I feel like is overselling almost everything to the point where I'm laughing every time his tone changes, which is quite frequent. And sadly that's the best part of the game so far. Canucks STILL look terrible. Luongo is the man, this game could be 3-0 at this point without him.

7:40 PM - The color commentator chimes in now with a gem, "The fastest pads in the NHL belong to LeClaire". My, that seems a bit much. Jan Bulis takes a penalty. He's on my shit list...in just two games. Clearly, it doesn't take much.

7:51 PM - The period finally ends. The Canucks looked a lot better towards the end of the period, but still, nothing to write home about just yet. Gallant, the BJ coach, looks like he should be a wrestler. I don't know why, but he looks like he'd be a surly drunk which I assume makes a good wrestler. Speaking of surly drunk, I'm getting there...

8:14 PM - Start of the second now. Honestly, I think the broadcasters are paid to hype these BJ lads. Both the color and play by play guy are pimping LeClaire like he's the ugly girlfriend at a dance and you have to explain to your friends why you picked a horse to show up in public with. It's getting sort of retarded. The Canucks need to score on this guy so I can hear how these announcers sell it. 'Nucks look far better this period.

8:18 PM - I see Bertuzzi scored a PP goal. Good for him. And Auld seems to be doing ok...oh, right back to the game I'm getting tanked too. The announcers just called LeClaire Luongo...maybe they're drunk blogging too. It's an epidemic! Look what Vancouver Canucks OpEd started! Canucks are badly outshooting the BJ's this period, something has to snake in. Or a well-timed PP for Vancouver would be nice too.

I recognize I'm harping on these announcers, but the game is just plodding along so I have no choice. Anyway, he just Bieska "Bleeska". That's it, they are drunk too. Perhaps more, I feel I have to exert myself more. OK, shots for everytime Bulis and Pyatt anger me. (I'll be dead by the third period)

8:30 PM - I just realized the Yankees are playing, which explains the noises coming from my neighbors. I see the Big Unit is pitching for them....I LOVE that nickname. That's solid as fuck (which, yes, is very solid). It's a shame Chara couldn't grab that nickname...he's intimidating enough, but with that name, he'd be unstoppable.

BJ's take a penalty. Canucks need to score on Luongo, er, LeClaire.

8:35 PM - Canucks powerplay looked, generally, terrible. They have dominated this period but not one player seems to be standing out nor does any one guy seem to be a legit threat in the offensive zone. I do think the different lines are still learning the nuances of their linemates, but seriously, this is getting depressing. Canucks need a spark or a swift kick to the crotch.

8:43 PM - Fuck. Three straight penalties leads to a rather long 5-on-3 and, SHOCK, the BJ's score on a flukey goal. The announcers, at this point, I think are giving each other hand jobs every time LeClaire's name is mentioned. That or they are on some strange sales plan where they get a free taco for every mention of him. But anyway, the second period is over and the Canucks seem they don't have a clue. Every criticism of the team, seemingly erased for one evening thanks to kicking Detroit's ass, is spot on now. No one can score, too many penalities, and Luongo can only do so much. Someone...ANYONE...needs to lead this team in the third period. The BJ's aren't that amazing, it's just that Canucks are just that poor so far. MORE BOOZE MORE BOOZE MORE BOOZE...

9:00 PM - Yankees losing = good. Panthers winning = OK I guess. Auld still let up two. I've resorted to putting on my old Brashear #8 jersey and my Canucks knit hat. Fuck, I'm doing this and it's the second game. I'm willing to do this if it means we score once. Just once...please?

I feel like I should explain my hatred for Ohio. It's not the people really, but one person. And I don't know his name. But a few years ago this one guy got up on some stage in Columbus and proceeded to shoot Dimebag Darrell, guitarist for Pantera and at the time of his death DamagePlan, and that still angers me. I am a drummer and grew up on, amongst other bands, Pantera one of the great thrash bands of my youth. Darrell was a killer guitarist and I fear I have no choice but to hate the entire state for the acts of one man. Forgive me.

9:10 PM - Canucks still can't get much going. They are controlling the play in the neutral zone, but can't mount any semblance of a solid attack. Shit, did I just use the word semblance? I'm not drinking enough or I get rather verbose when I am tanked. Either or, I'm slowly getting very pissed. It's starting to feel like last year and that feeling annoys me. I blame Carter.

9:19 PM - Fuck, my sweater worked! Salo...or Kesler...or some Canuck just scored on the man advantage. To quote Dumb & Dumber..."Sooo....you're saying I have a chance? YEEEEES!" For the record, the announcers could only say that their best friend LeClaire had no chance on that shot. I should have guessed that. Time for shots!

9:30 PM - MORE SHOTS!!!! D. SEDIN!!! H. SEDIN!!! MY JERSEY!!!! DRUNK BLOGGING!!!! LUUUUUONGO....FUCK YEAH!!!! My dog just gave me a strange look and walked out of the room. Can a dog give its owner attitude? Is that permitted?

9:33 PM - Spank my bottom, I had no idea they'd come back and get a point for their hard work. A giant difference from last year's team that would have laid over and died...the Canucks kept coming. Fanfuckingtastic. By the by, Malhotra has been my favorite BJ player so far. That guy can fly and makes me nervous everytime he's on the ice. Time for OT...let's roll 'Nucks!

9:36 PM - Daniel Sedin wins it! Are you shitting me? Did I just watch a Canucks team fight back in the third and win in OT? Are you seriously fucking kidding me? Honestly, what a great ending. They started poorly but played their team-first concept all the way to OT and the Twins basically win the game. Luongo, again, is worth every penny.

Drunk blogging rocks. I don't even know if any of this made sense. But before I forget, my grade for the Columbus broadcasters is a straight C. They are entertaining in their inability to pronounce names and also for their shameless bias...but I can't blame them much since they have to sell hockey to a midwestern audience. That said though...less booze next time boys and perhaps don't call LeClaire the second coming of christ when the game is halfway through. Just a thought.


Luuuuuongo....fuck yeah!

Remember a time when this very picture was reversed? By which I mean it was the Red Wings swarming around a cage-masked Dan Cloutier who was looking around feverishly for the puck only to find it in the net already? Ahhh...good times.

Canucks played very well last night, although in hindsight I don't remember anyone really standing out other then Luongo who was just as solid in net as billed all summer long. My god it was nice to know, when Detroit was pressing, I didn't have that "please don't shoot it" mentality in my mind that Cloutier/Auld/whoever else created for me after years and years. Besides Naslund and the Sedins cycling like madmen, I thought Bieksa (whom I feel like I never really saw under the Crawford regime) was pretty solid in his own zone, but probably needs to work on those points shots (I believe Salo can help him on that).

What concerns me a bit are players I really did not see at all (Pyatt), injured players flying around and slamming into objects and fellow human beings (Morrison) and players who really need to gel a bit better with their linemates so they know not to go offside. Twice. In a row. In the opening minutes (Bulis).

Overall it was a solid effort from a new team-first Canucks squad (damn that sounds strange). Protecting leads and playing well defensively was such a strange thing to see, but I can get used to it with results like this.

In the spirit of the Vancouver Canucks OpEd's drunken live blogs from last years Stanley Cup run, I'm thinking (since I'm a rookie at this entire blog thing anyway) I'm going to give it a whirl tonight. It also helps that:

1. I have little money to go out anyway thanks to going balls to the walls last Sunday for football
2. I hate Ohio
3. I extremely dislike Anson Carter
4. I extremely like Nikolai Zherdev (Yes I do. Sue me.)
5. My roommate is gone so I can act like a complete idiot and not reminded of it

By the way, James Mirtle loves Luongo as a Canuck. Something tells me that trend is going to continue if he plays like this everynight. I wonder how Panthers fans feel seeing last night's game...

(Picture courtesy of the Detroit News)


A funny thing happened on my way to the internet...

My pre-coffee morning visit to the Vancouver Sun gave me this to look at:

...with NO warning! I feel bad for those who live in Vancouver who are minding their own business, walking to work, thinking life is great, and then are thrown into an epileptic seizure with this. Good god. Actually, it begs the question of who is uglier: the Sun cover lady or the mutant in bed with Peter Forsberg in the new NHL commercials?

But as I reeled back from this lady's mug, I took a quick look at the NHL scores last night and saw, to my heart's delight, that the Avs managed to pull a third period indicative of the, oh, 2005-06 Canuck squad and lose in OT. Theodore here has that Dan "oh crap" Cloutier look in his eyes.

So the universe and cosmos is level once again.


Sabourin? But I Hardly Know Him!

Wacky Dave isn't done tinkering with the Canuck squad just yet. On the eve of their first game, Nonis acquired goaltender Dany Sabourin off of waivers from the Pittsburgh Penguins this afternoon. The Penguins exposed Sabourin (who was the odd man out anyway with Marc-Andre Fleury and Jocelyln Thibault on the roster) this morning to make room for Chris Thorburn who they acquired off waivers from the Buffalo Sabres late Tuesday.

Sabourin was named the AHL’s top goalie a year ago after leading the AHL in goals against average and save percentage. Sabourin also set Wilkes-Barre/Scranton records for consecutive wins, consecutive road wins and the longest unbeaten streak while also finishing with a league second-best 30 wins. Sabourin was originally drafted by Calgary in the fourth round (108th overall) of the 1998 NHL Entry Draft and signed with the Penguins as a free agent prior to last season.

If you care even more…and obviously you do…you can check him out in action here (WMP required).