Friday, May 29, 2009

He'd Hit That: Cup Preview #1

Well hey we haven't done one of these for a while. Time to search the interwebz for today's scandalous money shot. Hmmmm, well since everyone outside of Bill Guerin, Fedotenko and Sykora are too young to be married on the Pens, we're going to go with someone with a little more wear and tear on Detroit. Yeah, everyone's favorite regular season whipping boy, but somehow a shoe-in for the Hall of Fame; Chris Osgood.

Oh, that silly ginger. Apparently they took the Cup to the premiere of that terrible "Love Guru" movie? Ain't that a bitch! I hope that wasn't Ozzie's day with the cup, that'd have been the biggest waste of 2 hours ever. Anyway, um, hey Chris, you're wife's hot. K thx. Yeah, she would run a Yoga studio. Atta boy Chris, atta boooooooooiiiiiiiiiiieeeeeeee.

So here's the rest of these effortlessly shallow photoshops on Player's wives. So shoot me.

I Enjoy Doing This

See, yesterday I wasn't even allowed a computer at my training session. So I played Sonic on my phone the entire time. Takin' it to the man, anyway I can. So yeah, sorry about the no posts. But hey, more time to watch Huet try to win a game.

But hey, remember when I was like, man, these series are lookin' like poop compared to the epic matchups of the 2nd round? Remember that? Remember when you all poo-poo'ed me? "Carolina has it in em to come back, they allllllllllways come back!" "Chicago is too young to know they're in a hole, they'll come back!" Well guess what, I EFFING TOLD YOU SO!

Now look what we got, a rematch, where now all we're going to hear about is God Damned Marian Hossa. And I have to put up with these Yinzers all the damn time and their God Damned Penguins. GOD DAMMIT!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Huet's Save; A Thing of Beauty

What else can you say? That was unbelievable. Johan Franzen and the entire city of Detroit (not as if they had to be up in the morning for work) thought they had the game won right there. It's a shame it had to end on such an odd carom. But hey you know what...that kinda reminds me of someone.

Talbot Interview

So we already laughed hard a Cam Ward sucking ass. Now lets check out the other side of the story, and get the goal scorer's, Max Talbot, point of view.

Talbot is silly. Teehee.

Still More Going On, Crosby Probably Still Touching "It"

This week has really been a whirlwind of news, and naturally, we haven't been on top of any of it. Today changes that. Adding to what Denson just put together, I thought I'd add some more on top it.

First off, let's all point at Cam Ward and laugh.

As Dmitry Chesnokov (Puck Daddy's Russian Correspondent) "tweeted" last night, look's like Ward borrowed Varlamov's glove for the evening. You know what else, let's all point and laugh at him for 17 goals against in just 4 games. Ladies and Gentlemen, former Conn Smythe winner, and a guy who had previously had never lost a series in the playoffs, Cam Ward.

Next bit of news comes out of the mess that will be the Montreal Canadiens organization. Bob Gainey has decided that All Star game MVP, regular season joke, Alex Kovalev would be better suited for his team's needs than the inspirational come back kid, Saku Koivu. TSN is reporting that not only does Koivu not figure into the team's plans, but they would like to replace his Captaincy with none other than Mr. Kovalev, whom they have offered a contract between $6 and $7.5 million. The Habs have also low balled Mike Komisarek, offering a multi-year deal at around $4 million, where as the market would dictate he would get about $6 million. Not to mention that Gainey still has to figure out what to do with Tanguay, Lang, Kostopoulos, Schneider, Bouillon, Brisebois and Dandenault, have fun Bobbo!

Next off, it seems Detroit doesn't want the NHL to move up the start of the Stanley Cup to this weekend, as both Pavel Datsyuk and Nik Lidstrom will not be in the lineup tonight (according to Craig Custance). Can Chicago take advantage?

I'm hearing from Nik Kronwall that the weather in Detroit for parades is just a lot better later in the Summer.

Johan Franzen is just tired of babysitting these kids in Chicago, he must want to play a bunch more kids in Pittsburgh.

Commence Joel Quenneville bitching and moaning....NOW.

That's about all I've got, we'll catch up with the Conn Smythe noms and such as much as we can. Look for a Dialogue to pop in here sometime today too.

Lots Going On That Doesn't Involve Crosby "Touching It!"

Oh boy. Were we ever provided with some great, hilarious quotes late last night when Crosby decided to touch the Prince of Wales trophy and carry it around. To the video!

GASP! He touched it! My personal opinion? I HATED it at first. I was in a hotel lobby bar screaming " J---- Fn Chr--- he Fn touched it, we're cursed" And being as superstitious as I am, just ask Vance, it took quite the amount of texts from friends to convince me it wasn't a bad thing. I'm ok with it now, even if it was a "tradition" that was broken...I guess in a way it's symbolic to a passing of the torch from the older guys era to the young Ovechkin/Crosby/Toews/Kane era. Who knows, if Pittsburgh wins the Cup, it could catch on and become the new era's tradition. Cue the comparison of Malkin/Crosby to Lemieux/Jagr posing with the trophy.

Ok so besides that, there's a whole bunch of other crap going on around the league:

Biggest story outside of the playoffs this week was probably the Edmonton Oiler's hiring of Pat Quinn as their new head coach...and Tom Renney as the associate...whatever that is. Damn, that's one hell of an All-Star coaching staff. Enough to get the Oilers in the playoffs next year? Doubtful. Enough to get the Oilers back on the right track. Definitely. Think Jagr is salivating at the chance of signing with the Oilers now? Here's their press conference. Quinn looks really interested right?

In other news, Alex Ovechkin's 50 goal seasons will now have an asterisk next to it cause he's on steroids. I kid, I kid. The source has "questionable credibility", so we'll see how true any of this is. What a nightmare this could turn out to be though...and I'm not talking just for the Capitals. I mean for the NHL overall. If one sport has kept its name clean from the "Steroid Era" mess it's the NHL. Think about what it has done to Major League Baseball. Tough week for the Caps, cause looks like they're losing Kozlov and Federov to the KHL as well...hmmm how convenient...Vance smells something fishy...

Also, the Denver Post is reporting that Patrick Roy confirmed he was offered the Head Coaching job of the Avalanche but also has turned it down. What a relief for the Avalanche, but dammit for the rest of us...there definitely would have been some great "What the shit ref!" flip outs from behind the bench. Like good ol' Roger Neilson waving the white flag...

If anyone saw Sportscenter this morning with Matthew Barnaby talking about his "Zamboni being bigger than your Zamboni" please please post the link in a comment. I want that video. It's funny and awkward as shit.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Conn Smythe Nomination: From the Weekend; ECF Style

Vance said it last time, he cannot bring himself to write about the Penguins. So I guess I'll begrudgingly do it. Neither of us saw Game 3 of the Pens/Canes over the we had to go off the highlights...but not like it even mattered. Malkin takes the cake again. 2 Goals, 1 assist...domination again from the guy that was having a "bad post-season".

Honorable Mentions: Sid Crosby scored his team's first goal..again...for the 100th time during the playoffs...also...Cam Ward because the dude has been under constant fire and he's been able to keep his team in ALL 3 of these games...Let's not forget every game has been a 1 goal game going into the 3rd. I don't blame Cam for their suckiness.

Stereotyping is My Kinda Thing

I thought it was time for a little space filling, since we have so much we need to catch up on, stupid Conn Smythe thing, stupid Pat Quinn, stupid Sergei Fedorov. Anyway, I thought I'd post this picture to prove to everyone why people who still wear LiveStrong bracelets are douchebags.

Also, I went through the crowd pictures at RBC, let me be honest, there was a fair share of those who enjoyed a little too much pork barbecue, but all in all, I don't recall that many beautiful babies "watching" hockey in any other arena I've been to.

Well, they won't be there much longer after tonight. Way to give up 76 goals in 4 games Cam.

Think Yanni was Bad?

Remember how the Caps/Pens had to play back to back games because Yanni had a string of concert dates planned in Mellon Arena? Well, this is worse. In between games 2 and 3 of the AHL's Calder Cup finals between the Manitoba Moose and BanginPanger endorsed Hershey Bears, there will be a 4 day gap. Why? High School Graduation ceremonies.

Yes, that's right people. Last night I was laying in bed, thinking, hell, why in the world is there such a long break in between games 2 and 3? Is Winnipeg actually that far away from the rest of the world that these teams need between June 2nd and 6th to travel? Why would they possibly want to play 3 games in 4 nights? It makes no sense.

That is, until it hit me. My very own younger brother graduates, in the Giant Center, on the 4th, while another local high school will have it's student take their processional through the building concourse (classy, I know) on the 5th, and so naturally, Game 3 of the Bears/Moose series will be on the 6th. Hell, that ice will be covered and trounced on by high schoolers from the 2nd through 5th, how can that possibly be good for the ice conditions there? The Rink Rats will certainly have their hands full.

Why is this funny? This is the league championship for Christ's sake! These were 2 of the top teams in the league (Manitoba had the most points with 107, Hershey had 106). Not to mention the fact that these are the top 2 teams in attendance in the entire AHL (Ok, I mentioned it). Hershey averaged 8,987 over the course of the season, and Manitoba 7,769. Both lead the playoffs in home attendance as well. But still! They get bumped back a night or two for bratty, snot nosed piss ants and their parents, who will now have a false sense of entitlement since their kids somehow managed to get diplomas. See, I'm allowed to rag on these kids, since, you know, I graduated in the Giant Center too.

But in reality, this will be good for the league, and these teams. Weeknight games can be tough enough for NHL teams to fill the building (looking at you Phoenix, Detroit, New Jersey, Long Island, Florida, Tampa, etc.), let alone minor league hockey in mid-major markets. So by making these weekend games, it's making this Calder Cup schedule much more fan friendly, as in, I'll be able to go to games 3 and 4 now. Think the NHL could learn a thing or two about making a schedule a little more fan friendly? Yeah, thought so.

You know, if the price was right, I bet Charles Wang would push back a game to fit in some Graduation ceremonies, but then again, that would mean the Isles would have to make the playoffs. Obviously, we won't ever have to face that conundrum.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day

No hockey today, and we haven't gotten a chance to watch any since Thursday (out of sight, out of mind) but I just wanted to pop in and disrupt our weekend outage by saying thank you to the U.S. soldiers across the globe. Regardless of your political inclinations, it's a shame it takes a national holiday for the majority of Americans to realize the importance of these men and women.

So ladies and gentleman, from the guys at BanginPanger, we'd just like to say thank you. God bless.

- Vance & Denson

Friday, May 22, 2009

Conn Smythe Nomination ECF Game #2

As if we really need to even explain this one. Geno Malkin gets the nod for obvious reasons. Just watch the video and you'll understand.

Honorable mentions to Sid Crosby (1 G 1 A), Chris Kunitz (1 G, 2 A), and Chad LaRose (1 G, and really annoyingly good)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Should the NHL Carry Over Penalties in the Playoffs?

So for anyone that didn't turn the channel tonight to "So you Think you Can Dance" or something else uber homosexual, then you saw the last 2 minutes of the Pens/Canes game get completely out of hand.

UPDATE: Here's the video of the mess

You had the Canes basically just trying to start shit with anyone on Pittsburgh that would respond. You had Bayda and Letang drop the gloves cross check Letang in the face...then Bayda got held back by the refs only to have Gleanson come in and get pummeled by a naked Letang...and then Satan...yes Satan...and Eaves dropped them as well. Gleason got a 5 min major for fighting...a ghost I guess Letang. Bayda received a match penalty, Letang got 5 and 10, Satan 5 , and Eaves 5. After that mess was sorted out, Pitkanen went after Guerin and they traded cross checks, and then right after that Adams threw an elbow to Seidenberg's face who cross checked back and they both got penalties. Sheesh. What a cluster (dirty word for sex).

So what's my point? Well, there's all this talk that the NHL is trying to do away with this kind of shit at the end of games, especially when they are already decided. There's no reason for players to be going out there just to take cheap shots.

Remember back when Carcillo got suspended for taking a cheap shot at Maxime Talbot toward the end of Game 1 of the Pens/Flyers series?

There. Now you do. That's the kind of crap the NHL is trying to do away with...especially in the playoffs. Now in no way am I saying anything that happened between the Canes/Pens tonight warrants a suspension, but I just wanted to throw this out there:

If the NHL wants to do away with this kind of shit at the end of games...wouldn't making penalties carry over to the next playoff game help to eliminate some of that?

Think about tonight for example: If the penalties carried over, you'd have Pittsburgh starting Game Carolina...with about a 4 minutes left of a 5 minute major penalty. You'd have Kris Letang, a major PP contributor, basically sitting in the box for 10 minutes, Bayda probably out for the game, and then a couple other players in the box. Makes for an interesting game plan on off days no? And you would definitely have to think that coaches and players would think twice about "sending a message" at the end of the game.

Because really...what is the point of handing out penalties once the game has ended? Well if they carried over, then we'd have a point...and a consequence for the penalized team's actions.

I realize this wouldn't work in the regular season, but hey, I never said this was a perfect plan...I just thought it was a good subject to debate. Personally, I think starting crap like that is a good way for a team that is down to say "hey, look bitches, we aren't going to go away quietly". But when you're the NHL and would rather show concern for player safety, maybe this is an option.

So lets take a vote:

I'll update this with video footage of the "brawl" tomorrow since it isn't available right now.

Hey Look Now I Have Time

Denson says I didn't have enough time to post a picture with the previous post. Well, if I would've, here's what would've accompanied it.

Low blow? Maybe. But we're all thinking it. Plus, I haven't even used up my "Shittsburgh" references for all those times he called Washington the "Craps." There I used one. Also, I hope the Canes win, you know, so it's a series, not because I want to see the Pens lose, sheesh people.

Some Quick Game 2 Injury Updates

Seems like today is another one of those busy days for Vance and I, seeing how he couldn't even muster up a picture for his post today. Anyways, thought I'd throw out some things I'm hearing surrounding all the injuries between the Penguins and Canes.

Eric Cole - Cole skated today and it was reported via some reporters at Mellon this morning that he looked pretty decent out on the ice during skating drills. Interesting though was when he was skating in straight lines, up and down the ice, he looked OK. Cole was later doing some drills that required cross-overs and putting weight on that injured left knee, and it was reported that he was definitely favoring it and kind of just dragging it along for the ride. Take that for what it is. These are hockey players and it's the playoffs. I'd expect Cole to play.

UPDATE: It is being reported via ESPN Radio 1250 ( local Pittsburgh broadcast) that Cole is expected to play...and Ruutu will not. We will see.

Tuomo Ruutu - Haven't heard anything on Ruutu besides the fact he did not skate this morning. I'm not sure I even know what the hell happened to him. Of course he's a "game-time decision"

Rob Scuderi - Apparently, for whatever reason, Scuds was blocking shots in practice and took a shot off his foot that is now swollen. What the hell are you doing blocking shots in practice? Anyways, he's expected to play but he might be a half-step slower. Could be an advantage for the Canes as Scuderi has been maybe the Pens best D-man all playoffs.

Sergei Gonchar - It's not a question as to whether or not Gonchar will play tonight, the question is just how much. It seems as though Gonchar is ready to take on even more playing time, working his way back to his average of 27 - 28 min of ice time. Bylsma still wouldn't say if he's dressing 7 D-man or going back to 6. If anyone on either team is enjoying the 2 days off in between games, it's Gonchar.

Will This Round Be a Let Down?

Remember how utterly fantastic the hockey was last round? 3 of those series went to 7 games, the other went to 6. There were 7 OT games. 13 were decided by just 1 goal. The stars shone bright while others shown brighter. Yet here we are, 3 games into the conference final round, on the verge of both series going 2-0. Is this what we really want?

Now I'm not saying the hockey hasn't been good, the only game that wasn't close was WCF game #1 (and you could argue the ECF game #1 wasn't all that close either until the last 10 minutes), nor am I saying that I think these will all end up being sweeps or 5 game series. But compared to the last round I'm not sure how this round will stand up.

So what do you think people...are the Canes going to take tonight (without Cole and Ruutu) and make this just another time filling post? Can the Hawks take 2 at the United Center? Or is this inkling in my loins right; an anticlimactic Conference Final round?

Hit the comments people. Dooooooo it.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Further Proof Alex Ovechkin is a Child

So I'm pretty sure they have carnivals in Mother Russia, they have to right? That is where they get all those bearded ladies, well, there, and New Jersey. Anyways, I dunno, it's a video of Ovechkin wasting like 30 bucks to win a giant stuffed batman ball. He effing cheats.

Oh hey, look, it's me filling space and time again.

Conn Smythe Nomination: WCF Game #2

I don't have time to write this right now. Boss is breathing down my neck like it's nobody's business. So guess what, it's total cop out time. You choose. Who was last night's big time performer?

Crowd participation FTW!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Evgeni Malkin: Music to my Ears

Ovechkin loves Prince. Evgeni Malkin loves Britney Spears? Well apparently. Next we're going to hear Datsyuk enjoys him some Semin. I kid, I kid. But the proof is in the video, NHLSnipers with the find.

The 0:15 mark makes me wanna piss my pants laughing, but that's very unprofessional in an office environment. Too much for me to handle. I thought Gonchar was supposed to be keeping him from doing stupid things. Gonch, this counts as a stupid thing.

The End of the Old Guard

Yeah, I think so. The last vestiges of a bygone era are starting to drop like flies, or at the very least, show their age. Over the past year we've already seen Markus Naslund retire, while Sergei Fedorov and Mike Modano, both in their 19th seasons, recently announced they want to keep playing.

But just look at some of the guys this league has lost of the past couple years, since the lockout basically. Peter Forsberg, Jaromir Jagr, Trevor Linden, Dominik Hasek, some truly dominant their own era. How many of that past era of NHL Hockey are still around? There's the 2 mentioned earlier, Mats Sundin, Marty Brodeur, Brendan Shanahan, Nik Lidstrom, Joe Sakic, and Teemu Selanne. Then I suppose there's a 2nd tier; Scott Neidermeyer, Chris Chelios, Mark Recchi, Rod Brind'Amour, Sergei Zubov, Rob Blake, and Jeremy Roenick. Well Christ, there's still guys like Bobby Holik and Owen Nolan floating around. Remember when these guys were the Bee's knees? Remember when teams were built around these guys, instead of being called "veteran role players"? I'm sure they all do.

Now look around, outside of a few of those guys (I'll give you Sakic, Lidstrom, and Brodeur), they really are just veteran role players. It's a shame some of these guys can't accept, hell even recognize, when their time has come. The changing of the guard has arrived, well, it probably arrived 3 years ago. But now that the lights are fading on our oldest stars, they're really starting to shine for the up and coming superstars of a new generation.

Who's not excited to see Ovechkin try to top Selanne's 76? Could Crosby and Malkin put up 300 assists combined? Is Datsyuk really going to win the Selke for the next decade? Who is going to be the next Lidstrom? Pretty exciting huh?

Conn Smythe Nomination: ECF Game #1

Dammit, I don't know where Denson is, and I hate writing about the Penguins, that's his wheelhouse. Frankly, after the 2 PP's in the first 5 minutes and the Satan-out-of-the-box goal, I decided I was better served watching the Kelowna - Drummondville Memorial Cup game. But I did see enough of the Pens / Canes to know the story.

I may hate him most for this very picture. - Vance

Cam Ward was good, but Marc-Andre Fleury was better. I'm not going to go as far as to say he stole that game, but he certainly did exude the confidence that the Pens needed to hold on, a confidence that up to this point, I'm not really sure he had (especially when handling the puck, Jesus). He did only finish the night with 23 saves, but they were an important set of 23 saves, for certain (as if saving the puck isn't important in the game of hockey, what a stupid effing sentence I wrote).

In standard quote template #6, Crosby had this to say, "We didn't get the start we wanted. They got some quality chances early on. Usually when you are at home, you're not talking about weathering the storm, but he did that for us tonight." Now I know this is nitpicking, but Sydney (spelled incorrectly on purpose), holding a 2-0 lead 10 minutes into the game is usually, usually, a pretty good start. I'm not sayin', I'm just saying.

Honorable mentions to the benched brothers, Miroslav Satan and Phillipe Boucher for making the most of their minutes, and Chad LaRose for giving a damn for 60 minutes instead of the rest of the Canes, who only cared for about 15.

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Dialogue: A Handshake then a Milkshake

Get it? Cause Thomas is fat? Ahhhhhhhh never gets old. Well hey, dialogue it. And you thought I'd forget, but most off, nobody friggin' reminded me. Bush league people, bush league.


Hey, Guys! Guess What! They're Brothers!

Oh Brother is right. And I'm not the only one. Isn't this played out after the regular season? Cause you know, a Staal brother matchup is played every other friggin day.

We need a new story line, where's Ovechkin when you need him? Oh hey, Crosby beats his dog, lets talk about that.

Another inch....

And this could have been reaaaaalllly bad. Take a look below where, during last nights Blackhawks/Red Wings game, Ben Eager's skate blade damn near took Adam Burish's head off. Burish was lucky, to say the least.

Good reason for a playoff beard? How about a good reason for neck guards. Hell USA Hockey doesn't even go as far as to require players to wear neck guards. It's up to the State to decide. There's something wrong with that. At the very least, every youth leagues should have it as a requirement. I grew up in PA, I never played a game of Ice Hockey where a neck guard wasn't required.

When I tried "Googling" to find out if USA Hockey requires neck guards, I literally found nothing of the sorts. You'd think something would show up. A 2008 article from The Hockey News was where I found the stuff about the state making the rules. I found no mention of that in the USA Hockey Rulebook.

Here is the "rule" for goalies from the Official 2007-2009 USA Hockey Rulebook:

c) It is compulsory for all goalkeepers to wear helmets and full
facemasks. Throat/neck protectors are recommended. No
form fitted facemasks shall be permitted.

Uhhhh...neck guards are RECOMMENDED for the position where your sole job is the STOP pucks?? Plus you get run over and stepped on by skates. Excuse my language, but that's just retarded.

I did find a presentation USA Hockey did on Neck Lacerations...guess the presentation wasn't good enough to sway USA Hockey for a rule.

Basically what you'd expect though. The older you get, the less likely you're going to wear a neck guard. Hell, when I was playing in high school, we got away with wearing head bands as neck guards. It was the "cool" thing to do.

We know the NHL will probably never make neck guards required...but is there really that big of a difference between making a helmet required and a neck guard required? For a league that's trying to lessen fighting for "player safety reasons", you'd think they could add a little line that says some sort...any sort of neck protection is required...even to recommend it wouldn't be so bad. It's not like a neck guard impedes you from doing anything on the ice. They just look silly and are really really annoying.

I hate preaching the hypothetical "what if Zednik died" from this...

...but really, what IF he did. Probably wouldn't be posting this. So here's the question we ask to all of you current and former hockey players...and even to those that can't skate...

And just for fun, in a non pick up game of ice-hockey...

Conn Smythe Nomination: WCF Game #1

Well now that it's down to the final 4, it'll be a lot easier to start weeding out the one game wonders from the studs, let alone from the fact that we can now all cross Varlamov and Hiller from the nomination list. Eventually I'll check back and see who's leading right now. Who the hell knows.

But you know what I do know? The Hawks are in trouble. Even though it was a game until the 3rd, was it ever really "a game"? But as it is, we have to give the Conn Smythe nod from last night to Dan Cleary, who potted 2 goals on 3 shots, with a nice little +3 rating. He's no Johan Franzen out there, but it seems even the most marginal role players elevate their games when it matters most.

Unlike Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews, now I really like these two guys, and it wasn't their fault yesterday, as a matter of fact, this is pointed directly at Mr. Joel Quenneville. What in the hell are you thinking? You have two fantastic young players and you're worried about matchups? How bout you worry about getting them more than 14:45 and 15:10 in ice time before you start pissing away your games because you're afraid maybe Lidstrom and Datsyuk are on the ice. I don't care how much Dave Bolland has improved, he shouldn't be getting 5 more minutes of ice time than those two. /END RANT.

Honorable mentions on the day to Johan Franzen and Adam Burish (we'll show why later today, ugly/scary stuff).

Friday, May 15, 2009

I Want To Drink With This Kid

And why would you not? He's a showstopper. Take that little guy grocery shopping and you're going to get the numbers from at least 7 divorcees and maybe a few MILFS. True story.

This isn't from last night's game, haven't found any video of that particular "performance," but obviously, Jacked-Up-Shirtless-Bruins Kid is quite the regular.

And you know what, this kid gets it, you ham it up, son, for your 15 minutes is just beginning. Then one day, in 20 years, you'll be able to load up Youtube, and say to your very own son, "On this night, I got more airtime on a niche television station than Eric Staal." Your son will say "What's hockey?".

Well Last Night Was Fun

It's amazing how much more enjoyable the game of hockey is without the emotional attachment that drags us all into being knuckle dragging neanderthals. Take last night for example, nothing but a raucous display of Game 7 desperation and tom foolery.

The refs tucked the whistles into their elastic waist bands, the Ducks kept their elbows down, the Canes were the little Southeast team that could, and I enjoyed every second of it.

Now, that's not to say I wasn't disappointed in how the Ducks / Wings game ended. The video is titled "Cleary's Big Push" for a reason. Where was Brad Watson and his intent to blow on that one? Unfortunately, Devorski isn't Brad Watson, and he let it go.

It's a shame Hiller went out like that, face full of disappointment, complete with the Strawberry whine.

Now the Bruins / Canes game was one for the ages, I think. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to catch it, except for the 3rd period, gee golly, Thanks Versus! But, before OT, I was over at the Puck Daddy chat once again, as a panelist no less, and I called it, the Canes were going to take it, at the most inopportune moment. How's with a 1:16 left in the first OT sound?

I like Tim Thomas. I really do. But man, that was mockingly hilarious seeing him fly outta the net after the goal horn sounded. Man up, Tim. And naturally, it had to be probably the most taunted player on the Canes that pots the winner; Scott Walker. Dagger to GBF.

So aside from the fact that last night being was everything we thought Pens/Caps would be, what did you enjoy most?

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Conn Smythe Nomination 5/14/09 one saw that coming last night. At least certainly not a 6-2 blowout. No reason to dwell on that game much though since all the major media and sports sites have already basically said everything that could have been said about a great series. Now for another Conn Smythe Nomination.

Have to give this nomination to Sid Crosby for his performance last night. He was able to give his team that all important 1st goal on the road, in a very very hostile environment. The assist he had on Guerin's goal early in the 2nd period may have been the most crucial one as it completely sucked the life out of the Verizon Center and the Capitals. Then, trying to carry his team on his back, Ovie turned the puck over and Crosby walked in alone and beat Theodore 5 hole to erase any thoughts of a possible comeback. 2 goals and 1 assist for the Penguin Captain and a 2nd straight appearance in the Easter Conference Finals. Not too shabby.

Nothing more needs to be said about the battle between Ovechkin and Crosby besides epic and amazing. If Pens fans didn't gain an appreciation or a level of respect for Ovechkin during this series, you're moronic. Get over the Gonchar hit, it wasn't intentional. He's the best pure scorer in the game, and maybe of all time. Yah, he scores highlight reel goals, but that wrist shot from just inside the blue line is a thing of beauty. You know that cringing feeling in your stomach you Pens fans had every time Ovie had the puck because you assumed he was going to score? Yah, that's called respect for a great player.

If Capitals fans haven't gained an appreciation or respect for Crosby, then you don't understand hockey. He may not score pretty goals or have an amazing wrister, or even be a funny guy...but he's the best playmaker in the game. His vision is unmatched, and his puck control in corners is just ridiculous. And when the pressure is on, he delivers.

No one has "won" anything yet. Crosby's team may have gotten the better of the Caps this year but rest assured this is a Caps team very similar to the Penguins....every playoff loss is a learning opportunity and a stepping stone towards a Championship caliber team.

If you want more insight on the series you aren't going to find it here. It was great while it lasted, but now that it's over, lets move on. There are more games to be played.

So Who You Tryin' To Pick Tonight?

That was as anticlimactic as possible. I was over at Puck Daddy's live blog last night, and let me tell you, halfway through the 2nd the conversation tilted from the game to early 90's Nintendo. It was bad.

But like we did for the Caps / Pens, we gotta ask; Who you got?

And once again, why? Let's chat, or you can gloat. Whatever. Don't mess with me today. Totally not in the mood.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Conn Smythe Nomination: 5/13/09

So we have to make this one short and sweet, busy days at work for both of us today. I didn't catch much of either game last night, but from highlights, stat sheets, and word around the NHL community, it seems as though Ryan Getzlaf should get gold star for last night.

A goal and a helper from the Duck's team leader in points helped them stave off elimination and force a Game 7 with Detroit.

Honorable mention to Patrice Bergeron for 2 sick-nasty helpers last night helping to bring the B's and Canes series even at 3 a piece.

Stupid Poll Question

So in the midst of trying to decide who will win our Conn Smythe nomination for last night, I came across this stupid poll question on

Why are we asking this question now? I mean yes we all know it will probably go down as one, if not the greatest 7 game series ever...but if someone gets blown out tonight 4-0, would that not lessen it's greatness a bit...and maybe even cause the series to end with a whimper? I have a feeling even after this series is over and either Crosby or Ovie are golfing...the NHL still might lead with shit "Oh hey, remember that epic series between the Pens and Caps...blah blah blah....Oh and the Blackhawks play tonight for a trip to the Cup. Engblom out."

Oh and for all you casual/impartial fans hoping for a multi-overtime game. You bite your tongues, you bite them hard.

Mike Green and His Sticks

So by now everyone has heard Mike Green's story right? No? How could you not, it's how everyone in Washington is rationalizing his piss poor play. Ok, Ok, Ok, allow me to recap the situation.

Greener uses Easton Stealths, nothing special right? Well no, but, Easton conveniently discontinued his particular flex and blade at the beginning of this year, so, he tried to make it through the season with the 15 Stealth's he had left. Well, early on in Game 1, that stick snapped. So for the past 5 games and 2 periods, Mike Green has been playing with an Easton S17 as a replacement; different flex, different blade, and heavier.

Now, seriously, this isn't a story at all. That is, until you realize there's one Mike Green Easton Stealth left, yes, the stick that's ultimately destined for the Hockey Hall of Fame. That stick made it to Pittsburgh for Game 6 (where was it to begin with?) but Green decided to go with the S17 again.

But after Tarik El-Bashir wrote the article outing the story (linked above), well, more came out of the wood work. Apparently Green expected at least a half dozen more to arrive yesterday and today. Family, friends, fans, reporters; he really must've been pretty liberal with his freebies. So what's he got to say?
"So [Stealths] are coming in like no tomorrow. They're coming out of everywhere. Fans and one of the reporters even had one.

"I'll use [a Stealth] in the morning and see how it feels," he added.

At this point, it's not a talent issue, that much we know. It seems to be a mental thing. We're all told; players, coaches, media, that the playoffs is about gritty, hard-nosed defense. That isn't Mike Green's game, although it seems he's trying to make it so. Craig Laughlin yesterday said on the radio "Sometimes you're trying to do so much, you're not doing anything at all." Yeah, he was talking about Mike Green. Obviously we all know Green is about as good as it gets in the transition game, let alone his bomb from the point, what we also know is that, although he isn't necessarily a liability in his own end, far from it, he most certainly won't be confused with Lidstrom or Chara. By trying to change his game to fit the mold of "playoff intensity," Green has actually played himself out of the series.

But then again, if you've been watching this series as closely as we have, you've seen him mishandle how many point passes, misfire on so many shots, and really just didn't seem all that confident carrying the puck. Is it really the stick?

So tell me people, those of you that play, had played, still play, are playing with much of a comfort issue is there with a new stick? Are we seeing Mike Green think himself out of the series? Is a stick change really going to alter his game? I guess we'll find out tonight.

Update 6:49 - Mike Green takes the warmups with an Easton Stealth!

Bizzaro World in the West

Pavel Datsyuk? Mr. Skate Away himself, Throwin dukes? Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat? Well if you didn't stay up til the end of the Wings/Ducks game 6 tilt last night (no one did) you missed a helluva show.

Look who's out there for the Wings: Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Hossa, Rafalski, and Lidstrom, and not just a fight, but 2 fights manage to break out?!? Not to mention the fact that Getzlaf was itchin' to pound some faces (lookin' at you Hossa) while Lidstrom and Hossa were trying to save, literally, Datsyuk's face.

Now this isn't altogether surprising, it is the Ducks mind you. But I do want to point this out: Getzlaf totally started it. A 6'3" Corey Perry went after 5'10" old man Brian Rafalski. Niedermeyer and Datsyuk? That was just humorous, but I think that just goes to show how playoff emotion can turn even the most noble of citizens into Philadelphia Flyers for a night. Zing.

Guess you have to give kudos to the Wings for protecting themselves, but also for showing that they are definitely rattled heading into game 7.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Poll: Tomorrow Night, Who You Got?

Well folks, tomorrow night is it. After last night's roller coaster affair, it'll all come down to an amalgam of 18,000 screaming bandwagoners and diehards, all reveling in their red, waiting for the puck to drop.

Well, since no one who reads this could possibly afford to take in the most anticipated game of the decade (go one you wanted to see more), we simply want to know your opinion. Which leads us to the poll question; Who you got?

Leave your justification in the comments. Let's chat, bitches.

Conn Smythe Nomination: 5/11

That was ridiculous. You all stayed up and watched the 'Nucks / Hawks game right? You didn't?!? You're retarded. About when I switched over from Comcast Washington over to Versus, it was 3-3 heading into the 3rd period. Then...Wow. Insanity. Then...Wow, Patrick Kane.

That hat trick was somethin' else. So obviously, Patrick Kane, in only 13 minutes of ice time, gets the Conn Smythe nod for last night. 4 shots, 3 goals. That was something else. That game was something else.

Honorable mentions go to Victor Kozlov, Dave Steckel, Dan Sedin, Jon Toews, and Sidney Crosby. You already know why.

Monday, May 11, 2009

This is Real.

Yes sir. This. Is. Real. Based on experience...that would have to take, what, a good half hour of manscaping to finish that off? Gross.

Thanks to the DC Sports Bog for that one.

The Dialogue: Ovechkin Doing Something

So, I'm not sure if his helmet is blowing him or what. But that has got to be an O face. How awkward. As always, enter your own caption, but like always, you won't, cause you are an ass face.

Conn Smythe Nominations: From the Weekend

Too much went on between Friday and Sunday for me to really remember who had great performances and such. It would probably make more sense if we wrote these as they happened...but being drunk and making sense don't really go hand in hand. To the nominees!

Friday May 9th - Rob Scuderi. Yes THAT Rob Scuderi. The game may be long gone in most of our heads but if we look back at the game, Scuds was out of his mind. He spent almost 24 min of playing time and finished with a +3 rating. His night may have been, however, highlighted by the fact that he helped to limit Ovechkin to only 2 shots on net. When's the last time Ovechkin recorded only 2 shots on net...ever?

Saturday May 10th - Dustin Byfuglien - Blackie (I'm allowed to used that cause I'm black) scored twice, helping to lift the Hawks over the Canucks on the road in crucial 4-2 victory. Starting to make a name for himself as one of the better power forwards in the game. Now the Blackhawks have a chance to end it Monday night in front of their home crowd.

Sunday May 11th - Zdeno Chara - Gigantor finally played like the Norris Trophy Candidate Gigantor we all know he can be. Chara assisted on two of the Bruin's 4 goals last night and finally shut down Mr Staal. He didn't look lost out there like he had in the previous 3 games...good luck winning in Raleigh.

So, um, yeah, Ouch?

So everyone's seen Scott Walker clobber Aaron Ward right? HOW BOUT IN HD?!? Oh yeah, everyone's got HD now...anyways. Ouch.

Scott Walker's an old man, and isn't exactly known to strike fear in the eye's of opponents...well, the man tied for 323rd in penalty minutes this season with a whole 39, managed to put up 17 last night with the swing of that hook.

Word is Aaron Ward *might* have a cracked orbital bone in his face, a la Blair Betts. Anyone else surprised that Tim Thomas didn't jump him? That is something he would do.

Update: Scott Walker has been fined, like Chris Kunitz, a measly $2500 for that. Worth it? Not worth it? Joke City, Massachusetts?

Friday, May 8, 2009

I Don't Know What This Is

...but holy shit I bet he could stickhandle like a Mother.

Conn Smythe Nomination: 5/7

I wasn't sure to pick today. It was pretty close all the way around. Luongo pitched 57 minutes of shutout hockey...but then gave up 2 in the next 5. Khabibulin gave up one goal...but only faced 15 shots (and let Darcy Hordichuk score?!?). Perry popped in 3 irrelevant points. So in reality it came down to 2 guys, Hossa and Franzen.

I'm going with Johan Franzen. Last night The Mule popped in 2 early goals (a game tying and go ahead) as well as assisted on one of Hossa's 2 goals. Overall, has Franzen not been, once again, the sick nasty go-to offensive force on the Wings during the playoffs? Leading the Wings in goals and assists, Franzen has been the most consistent force for the Wings while Datsyuk is mired in all his defensive glory.

I already listed the honorable mentions above. DIShonorable mention to Jonas Hiller, who we've blown egregiously thus far, for getting the yank midway through the 3rd.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Sometimes I Can't Help Myself.

Oh come on, as if this just wasn't asking to be done. Marty Brodeur jokes never go out of style. Get over it, it's funny.

Posterizing the NHL Playoffs

It was bound to happen. I'm just glad I thought about it. So I'm gonna link this over there on the side, and it's just gonna get updated with scores of these images. Why? Nothin' better to do.

Thursday 5/7

Friday 5/8

You can always just send us your Playoff pics...after you Obama the shit out of 'em. And we'll post 'em.

Epic Playoff Moments

Let's post some epic playoff moments, in video form, to take up some of your day. Because I'm deprived of the Sabres this time of year anymore, we're going back in the day. Let's recap Game 6 of the series between the Sabres and Devils in '94.

You can tell it's the 90's, look at all the teal in the stands. What an awesome call, sending the series "back to where Jimmy Hoffa is." I really hope Jeanneret doesn't retire.

Look at some of those names, Christ, I was 9 years old. Richard Smehlik, Derek Plante, Alex Mogilny, Jason Dawe, sheesh. I was 9 freakin' years old.

Guys still playin' from that video? Um, Phillipe Boucher (kinda), Marty Brodeur, can you think of any others? Remember, I was 9 freakin' years old.

Will we look back at game 2 between Pens/Caps in 15 years and say "holy shit, epic."?

Conn Smythe Nomination: 5/6

Well how bout that, Evgeni Malkin, we asked what a little home cookin' would do for him, well guess what, he channeled his inner Jagr and pwnd.

Tyler Kennedy taught him this trick.

He may have "struggled" with only 2 assists in the first 2 games, well last night he kept up his point per game streak with that important 2nd goal. But it wasn't that that gives him the nod over Varlamov, it's the fact that when he was on the ice, the puck was glued to his stick.

I wasn't kidding when I said he looked like Jagr, when was the last time you saw a guy take and carry like that? So strong with the puck. He drew, by my estimation, 3 penalties, got off a good 9 shots, and finally, he played close to 30 minutes.

There, I blew him. Don't expect it again.

Honorable mentions go to Simeon Varlamov for keeping that game even close, Jussi Jokinen for scoring in sudden death, Cam Ward for being Cam Ward, and Eric Staal for his continued strong, strong play (against good teams for once).

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Fan of the Week: No Mercy for Detroit

Cause they don't deserve mercy. They win too damn much, and we've all got a bit of penis envy. more! We're takin' them down a rung or two. Off we go! [I suggest clicking on the thumbnails, there's some moderately entertaining commentary. I said moderately, so don't expect much.]

We can thank our lucky stars that the Red Wings have celebrity endorsements! Like oh, the ever classy Kid Rock! And that tool bag Dave Coulier! And the other guy from Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Not really, well, maybe.

Oh now I know, those don't count. These are the real Detroit fans.

Ok, well maybe these aren't the real fans either. Guess we'll keep searching.

Well, we sure as hell know these guys (gal) aren't Wings fans. Though, these two pictures are exactly the reason I can't stand the effing Wings, too much damn success.

And yes, now we've found her. Sweet Carrie. How can I hate the Red Wings with images floating around the web like that.

Well folks, this here is your installment of fan of the week [weak]. You can always find the other images right here.

Debate of the Day: Phoenix Coyotes

I figure since we're all very opinionated people, that we can try to start up some legitimate debates here, other than those of the "Does Crosby want some cheese with that wine?" or "Ovechkin makes Ellen Degeneres look do-able" variety.

Now we don't have all the facts in this situation...yet. But here's what we do know. The Phoenix Coyotes have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, filed under "reorganization to implement a court-approved sale of the team under the federal bankruptcy code." In this bankruptcy filing, there is also a proposed sale of the team to PSE Sports & Entertainment for about 212.5 million dollars. Yes, PSE is headed by none other than Jim Basillie, owner of Blackberry's Research In Motion, and failed opportunistic buyer of the Penguins and Predators. In this provision Basillie would then in fact turn around and move the Coyotes to "Southern Ontario," and with his past proceedings, one would have to assume Hamilton (but apparently Brantford), which is within driving distance of a lot of metro areas, as you can see below.

Sure is awful close to Buffalo... sure is awful close to Toronto.

Bob McKenzie of TSN, however, is reporting that current Chicago White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf and Gary Bettman are putting together a plan to purchase the Coyotes, all the while keeping the team in Glendale, AZ. Now not much is known about this offer, except we'll be seeing it sooner than later, but one can assume, not unlike the Predator's situtation, that it will be considerably less than what PSE is offering.

However, since David Moss (current Coyotes CEO) filed for Chapter 11, then in Federal Court they must sell to the highest bidder. BUT! Since the NHL has loaned monies to the Coyotes, the NHL believes Moss no longer was within his rights to declare bankruptcy and that in fact, the NHL has removed Moss as an official of the club and will represent the franchise in Bankruptcy Court. Ok.

Get it? Bettman, guns, Coyotes? Whatever.

So those are the facts and back to the debate at hand. Right now let's talk about the two high level options we have.
  1. Keep the Coyotes in Arizona: I'm not a lawyer, so I don't know all the ways that the NHL could succeed on keeping Jim "Mark Cuban" Basillie out of the old boy's club, but that is Bettman's current mission. The NHL loaned monies to this club, played at 85% attendance, and amazingly enough, the Coyotes have lost upwards of $45 million.

  2. Let Basillie Buy the Coyotes, move to Ontario: Jim Basillie already has the data for season ticket sales in Hamilton, he already tried that when he made his move for the Predators. There is obviously demand in that area. The NHL take's a sweet chunk of change home with them and can forget about the mitigated disaster of Bettman's Grand Experiment.
Now let's talk about this...If you're Gary Bettman, are you trying to keep the Coyotes in Phoenix? Are you willing to move the team to Ontario? What is in the best interest of the team? What is in the best interest of the League? Will Buffalo and Toronto lobby against PSE?

Let's chat.

Conn Smythe Nomination: 5/5/09

Last night's games were a bit of a let down if you were comparing them to Tuesday night's game between the Caps and Pens, but that doesn't mean we weren't graced with some great performances. This one is a no brainer, however, as we give the nod, for a third time, to the man they call Jonas. (Weezer reference!)

Jonas Hiller turned aside 45 of 46 shots last night leading the Ducks to a 2-1 victory and a 2-1 series lead against the reigning Stanley Cup Champs....even though it SHOULD have been 44 of 46 and headed into OT. I hate to admit it but Detroit got screwed. Oh well, makes me laugh. Hiller is making me eat my words though cause I surely did not see him brick walling the Wings the way he has thus far.

Honorable mentions to the Sedin twins for being the Canucks offense and Teemu Selanne for starting to step up.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Kovalchuk Rags on Theodore

Welcome to the world of making fun of Jose Theodore. Everyone does it, how can you not? The dude hooked up with Paris Hilton for God's sakes, at that point, you lose credibility as an athlete. I'm looking at you too, Matt Leinart.

Well after last night's game Ovechkin wished Kovalchuk the best and hoped Russia would take the Gold at the IIHF World Championships. So some reporter caught up with Kovalchuk and asked him to repay the kindness. So what's he to say?

That Theodore sucks balls! Haha, now suddenly the Caps get a goalie and they're the favorites to come out of the East. You're so silly, Ilya. But seriously, Theodore's a goalie that went 3-1 against you this year (let alone the fact that you accounted for 25% of Simeon Varlamov's regular season wins and yeah, 50% of Michal Neuvirth's) you're going to talk like that? Hilarious.

H/T to FanHouse's Eric Mcerlain. And Puck Daddy's Russian Counterpart Dmitry Chesnokov.

Conn Smythe Nomination: 5/4/09

Well one of the big names finally stepped up and claimed himself a BanginPanger Conn Smythe Nomination (that's my East Coast Bias totally boning Getzlaf), that person was Alex Ovechkin.

If you didn't watch last night, you aren't a fan. As soon as Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother were over your ass should've been planted on Versus (or If you did manage to miss it, you missed a shooooooooow. For every goal the Penguins, err, Crosby put up, Ovechkin answered. Both of the top players in the game posted hat tricks, and vaulted their way into the top 3 of playoff scoring. The difference between their games? I guess Dave Steckel?

Crosby and Ovechkin last night were magnificent, elevating their games to another atmosphere. It's truly special to watch these two when they're performing like we know they can. If I could give them both a nom, I would, but even I can't manage that (I could, but I'm not going to)

So with that, honorable mentions go to Sidney Crosby, Simeon Varlamov, and Marc Andre Fleury (let's be honest, he was left out to dry on all but Ovechkin's 3rd goal).

Monday, May 4, 2009

Colin Campbell?

Watch the video.

Ouch. That's an Anaheim Mighty Ducks play right there, guess naturally it would be Kunitz, he learned from the best in Pronger. Nothing will come over this, definitely not a suspension, more along the lines of retribution, but it needs to be pointed out that that is just plain unnecessary and painful, Christ.

In interest of fair play, once the video of Ovechkin diving at center ice gets online, that'll be posted too.

The Hanson Brothers in 2009

So I think it's safe to say everyone's favorite [raunchy] hockey movie is Slap Shot, cause frankly, the Hanson's would've wiped the ice of Team Iceland before it ever got to a shootout. Well, I got the opportunity to party with them on Friday night. And yes, we partied.

Now I must say, when you're at a bar, half the TV's playing the Wings - Ducks, the other half playing Slap Shot, you know you're at the right place. I was at the right place. The place was filled with old Hershey Bears; Mitch Lamoureux, Bob Wilkie to name a few, not to mention of course the Hanson Brothers.

Well of course I had to go introduce myself to the 3, and here's the proof.

How does a guy break the ice when he wants to talk to the Hansons? Well obviously one has to build up the liquid courage and go up to Dave Hanson (right), opening with "Congratulations to your son, it's awesome he's living the dream. But hey, the Maple Leafs suck." True story, you can't make that shit up.

Anyways, all I can say is that they are all extremely nice guys, were totally gracious and willing to chat about anything. All Dave had to say about the Leafs was "look for some big changes." I think that's what he said. If you ever have the opportunity to meet them, how can you pass it up? You can't.

The Dialogue: Claude Julien Has Something to Say

You thought I'd forget. Hell, I almost did forget. But guess what, I didn't. So now you're stuck with another episode of the Dialogue. Today's features none other than Boston's very own Claude Julien, pointing at something, my guess? A turkey leg.

Have at it in the comments, fat jokes galore.

Strongest Line of the Playoffs: RPG

Well each team's played at least 6 games now, so we can really take a look at what line's have been producing...and which lines haven't.

Domination? There's a few out there that are just completely pwning defenders, Norris and Selke finalists alike. Probably the best line out there right now is Getzlaf, Perry, and Ryan. Regardless of whether they're matched up against Datsyuk, Lidstrom, or Zetterberg, they are scoring seemingly at will. The size of those 3 guys, the smallest being 6'2'', is making life tough on opposing teams, and they are truly a force to be reckoned with. So far, they have 25 points between them in just 8 games. Blueliners are receding quicker than Getzlaf's Hairline. HEYOOO.

Is there anyone dominating like that line right now? No. There's been flashes of brilliance from a bunch of lines, but none nearly as consistent as the RPG ballers. The Sedin twins have been rolling all playoffs long, the Staal-Whitney-LaRose line has been lights out, Semin-Backstrom-Fleischmann has controlled play, Savvy-Lucic-Kessel has been really good (but so has the rest of their team), but none of these lines have consistently performed quite like the Ducks top line.

The most disappointing line of the playoffs? Is it not the Holmstrom-Datsyuk-Hossa line? How can it not be? Would you expect these guys to be ranked 7th, 12th, 8th, in points, on their own team, let alone the entire league? Yet here we have Tomas Holmstrom and Marian Hossa stuck with just 4 points, 2 goals and 2 assists a piece, while Pavel Datsyuk, yes Hart Trophy Nominee Pavel Datsyuk, only has 1 goal and 2 assists.

If there is not a more disappointing line out there right now I demand you comment. You won't, a) because you suck and b) because there isn't a more disappointing line. So what do you think, what line has been the most dominant so far? Which line has been the weakest?

A Penguins Fan Experience at the Verizon Center

I was way to drunk way too often this weekend to even shower at times...let alone write a post. As Vance mentioned, I did attend Game 1 between the Caps and Pens on Saturday afternoon. And what a day it was.

You know those obnoxious, smart ass Penguin fans that everyone hates? Well I was with two of them...and possible created a 3rd, but these 2 at least know their hockey and aren't bandwagoners. I knew what I was getting into before I even bought the ticket. And by the way...I bought my ticket Friday night around 11pm. Why were there still tickets available on Ticketmaster Capital fans? Why?

Anyways, as you can expect we dished out the shit-talking and did a great deal of taking the shit-talking as well but I want to share with you the Failure of one, certain fat, little Capitals fan. Because it is funny. And is the epitome of FAIL.

After arriving at the Metro stop leading to the Verizon center, my buddy started taunting a guy that had a brand new Varlamov jersey on.

My Friend: "Nice brand new Varlamov jersey fanboy, you buy that today?" We await the fatmans comeback....
Fatman: "Oh yeah? Well nice Cindy Crybys jersey!" My friend had on a Kris Letang jersey. FAIL 1.
My Friend: "Dude this is a Kris Letang jersey dumbass, do you even know anyone on your team besides Ovechkin?"
Fatman: "Dude it doesn't even matter, you guys are the #6 seed in the playoffs!. You guys suck!" FAIL 2.
My Friend: "We're the 4 seed assclown."
Fatman: "We have 6 of the top scorers in the league and the number one in points!" FAIL 3.
My Friend: "You are a moron. We have 2 of the top 3 scorers and the NUMBER 1 leader in points!"
Fatman: "I meant in goals"
Other Friend: "Hey man, let me grab that brandnew price tag off your jersey for you"

He then proceeded to touch the man's back as if to rip of the tag. MISTAKE. Little fat man took exception to that and lunged at my buddies...his wife pulled him back and calmed him down.
My Friend: "Man you're a 40 year old trying to fight three 23 year olds. Get a life."
His wife looked like she was going to cry. She said, you do NOT want to go there, grabbed her man and went up the escalator. Hilarious. Now in now way am I saying this represents the majority of Capital fans because I know it doesn't. It was just a funny FAIL story. Also, kudos to the 3 separate times we were misled by Capitals fans as to which metro stop was best to get to the Verizon Center. Kudos.

Overall game experience was great. It was everything Gary Bettman could have hoped for and more. Most fans were respectable except for a few disgruntled drunkies, but you'll have that. Rock the Red is a douchey slogan, but it does look cool. Also, are we really serious with those introduction of the Capitals on the Jumbotron? They are like...modeling videos for Affliction. Mike Green...come on man. Seriously? I'm going to search for it on YouTube. If I find it, I'm going to be giddy. I'll be watching tonight's game from the safety of my hotel room.

Conn Smythe Nomination: 5/1 - 5/3

Geez, what a weekend of hockey that was. Some epic games (first multi OT thriller), some game changing plays (Varlamov comes to mind) and some glorious, glorious, hockey action. Now on to the top performers of the weekend, mind you we take the weekend as a whole, so suck it.

On Friday, Detroit managed to win game 1, without Brian Rafalski (the Devils aren't the only one's who can win without him), and guess who stepped up in that there game? Oh imagine that, Niklas Listrom. While logging over 27 minutes of ice time, Lidstrom potted 2 goals on the night, and also picking up an assist, in a thriller. He scored the GWG with 50 seconds left, clutch city.

Saturday? Well, Saturday, I'm going to skip Saturday. Not because Sharp or Varlamov don't warrant consideration for their efforts, they do, they'll get their honorable mention and we'll move on to Sunday.

And what a Sunday it was. 2 guys stepped up big time on Sunday. For the 'Canes, Cam Ward showed that he gets unreal during playoff time, posting his 2nd shutout of the postseason, all the while handing the B's their first playoff loss. 36 saves at TD Banknorth is no laughing matter, and a phenomenal effort.

The 2nd guy on Sunday who needs recognized is Ryan Getzlaf. Let's be honest, we want to give a shout out to Jonas Hiller, who's 59 saves were clutch. But Getzlaf dominated the show, logging 39 minutes of ice time, while scoring 1 and adding 2 helpers. If the stats aren't enough, it was just his overall play that was dominating, with his line of Perry and Ryan consistently forcing the wings to play back on their heels. It's performances like that that warrant Conn Smythe Consideration.

Honorable mentions on the weekend go out to: Patrick Sharp, Marc Savard, Simeon Varlamov, Jonas Hiller, Alex Semin (his fake shot pass to Ovechkin was amazing), Sidney Crosby (dominated at times in game 2), and Todd Marchant.
Fact: BanginPanger is not meant as an insult to the one and only Darren Pang, nor do I claim to be him. The views and opinions presented on BanginPanger are of my own, and no other namesake of the site, the NHL, Buffalo Sabres, Washington Capitals, or anyone else.