Monday, November 15, 2010

Drunk Bruins Girl Sucks

We've all seen the video of that gal who decided that falling over in the bathroom and getting piss all over herself so her manly sounding girlfriend could video tape her kicking a potty pillar was a good idea; right? Right.  Well she was caught.  Good.  Even better?  The Bruins taking a bad situation and making it better; with a response video.

First half is the dumb whorebag; second half is the Bruins' bear. THIS IS A TEACHING MOMENT.  Good on the Bruin's for taking what was an internet sensation and twisting it in their favor.  Somebody hire that marketing team for the next election.

There's a long list of things I'd like to heel kick in Boston; they are as follows.

1. Tom Brady
2. David Ortiz
3. Robert Kraft
4. That girl
5. This guy
6. Justin Bieber
7. Potty pillar

I don't think the potty pillar is actually 7th on that list; I just can't think of anything more that needs a good spinning heel kick.

Jersey Fouls; Even "Real Hockey Towns" Are Afflicted

This past weekend saw me take my annual pilgrimage to Buffalo for a game.  It happens every year, Canadian beer gets drank, wings get eaten, essentially it is the most cliche road trip ever.  Either way; a fun time was had by all.

Anyways; I'm not really looking for jersey fouls while I'm waiting in line for another beer; but sometimes they stick out like a sore thumb.

Like this young woman; who at the behest of being a fan ordered the Sabres 40th anniversary jersey and went all double nameplate on us.  "There's Always Next Year" and with what looks like to have years on the arm sleeves, which is hazy, but I believe it was 20 on one sleeve, 12 on the other.  So is this some sort of protest jersey?

Either way I typed "There's Always Next Year jersey" into Google Images to see if there's any other pictures (other than my drunk iPhone picture) and just got images of Hasselhoff and Marian Hossa.  Very confusing.

So; then filing out of HSBC arena; everyone all giddy that they won and Vanek went all Sportscenter Top 10, and someone in an ultra-annoying but all too familiar voice quips 'Ohhhhh nooooooooooooooooooooooooo.' I look up; and yeah.

It's Mr. Bill.  Is it Mr. Bill of SNL and Mastercard commercial fame; or Mr. Bill; creepy neighbor who retired in 1986?  A question we'll never get answered. Ever.

But seriously; how schwasty was I that I couldn't even get a centered picture of the guy and I was walking directly behind him?  Was a good night.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Would You Trade Evgeni Malkin?

It's that time of the year; the poor starts aren't just starts anymore; the slump isn't just a trend; it's a reality.  Shit just got real for a dozen teams, and especially for their fans.  This isn't how the Pittsburgh Penguins were supposed to open their season at their new state of the art home.  Yet here they are, 16 games into the season (almost 20% of the season) sitting in 3rd place in the Atlantic division at 7-8-1.  So put on Ray Shero's diamond studded loafers, and what would you do?  Well, let's take a cue from Bruce Garrioch; why don't the Pittsburgh Penguins trade Evgeni Malkin?

Coming off the worst season of point production in his young career, 77 points in 67 games, down 36 points from his career high of 113 in his Conn Smythe trophy and Stanley Cup winning campaign (in 15 more games).  There is simply no denying last season was an aberration is a seemingly ascending career arc.  Outside of shorthanded goals; every single major category saw career lows and major decreases. Blame it on injury, blame it on getting paid, blame it on Crosby shooting more.  Whatever, fact is; he wasn't good (I love the fact that his reputation is such that a player averaging 1.15 points per game wasn't good) .

Now fast forward to this year; where a slow start; by the Pens and Malkin himself; makes you ask the question; could the return on a trade for Malkin be worth making the move?

The Penguins have committed $35.4 million to their core: Crosby, Malkin, Staal, Martin, Michalek, and Fleury.  That's $35.4 million to 6 guys, leaving $24 million to the 14 other roster players.  Sounds like the same exact problem the Tampa Bay Lightning encountered; how did they respond?  They traded Brad Richards.  The precedent's set; but would the ROI be worth it?

Let's look at some deals to try to get a sense of what Malkin might be worth.

1. Ilya Kovalchuk, Anssi Samela, 2nd rounder for Johnny Oduya, Niclas Bergfors, Patrice Cormier, 1st rounder, 2nd rounder
2. Chris Pronger and Ryan Dingle for Joffrey Lupul, Luca Sbisa, 2 1st rounders, 3rd rounder

So; think of it this way; for pending UFA Ilya Kovalchuk, the Devils had to give up a top 4 blueliner, a promising rookie, and a promising prospect.  Evgeni Malkin still has 3 years left on his contract.

Or think of it this way; for pending UFA Chris Pronger, you can get an established 20 goal scorer, promising prospect, and multiple first rounders.  Evgeni Malkin still has 3 years left on his contract.

So for a pending UFA generational scorer you have to give up a very pretty penny.

For a pending UFA generational blue line talent, you have to give up an even greater nickel.

For a generational all around talent widely considered top 5 in the game currently, with 3 years left on his contract, you have to be completely out of your mind if you think it could ever happen.

What team could possibly mortgage their 5 year future to make a move like this?  How could 66 justify keeping Ray Shero if he made a move like this?  How are you even still reading this?

The Pittsburgh Penguins, and Evgeni Malkin, will be fine.

But I mean, if the Kings come calling...

Monday, November 1, 2010

Looking at the Sheldon Souray Saga...

...without the biases of an Edmonton media scourge.  That same scourge that has painted Sheldon Souray the worst person on the planet ever.  Yet; the only people we ever really hear on the subject (because they're the only ones who care?) are those same Canadian journalists.

That is; until he arrived in a Hershey Bears uniform.  Now we have a fresh look at the guy; a fresh look at the 'locker room cancer' and 'bad character guy' that is Sheldon Souray.

Thanks to for the image.
Now if you'll remember; this all broke out initially in early April of this year; with a Sportsnet piece on him wanting a trade; firing shots at Edmonton management on his presumed way out the door.  Souray claims that management forced him to play; knowing he was nursing an injury and that he wasn't cleared at all; then questioned his commitment to the organization; knowing full well he willingly signed with them as a free agent.

Fast-forward to this season; with the well-documented saga continuing up the Hershey Highway (that's PA Rt. 322, just FYI); where he was loaned to the AHL's Hershey Bears after being asked not to show his face at Rexall Place for training camp.  Don't want to sour the kids with all those bitter grapes right Tambellini?

Souray was thrust into the spotlight once again when, like back in Edmonton, Souray broke his hand in a fight.  Edmonton journalists could've rioted after hearing that news.  "That's just like him; fighting in a meaningless minor league hockey game".  Ok; maybe that's not verbatim; but it was certainly insinuated, inferred, in...sert verb here.

Then in Harrisburg's Patriot News; the Hershey Bear's beat reporter Tim Leone, and members of the Hershey Bears, painted a far different portrait of Souray than we've seen in the years since Souray played in Montreal.

Some quotes from the article:

Hershey Bears Head Coach Mark French: “I think he did what he felt he had to do. I thought the timing was very appropriate for what he did. I think it shows how much he’s involved, how much he’s committed to be here. If anything, for me, and probably more important for the team, it solidified that he is a member of this group.”
Winger Steve Pinizzotto: “It’s funny how the Canadians are giving him the gears for fighting, because it’s the Canadians who seem to love the fighting the most. He’s not showing a downside at all to be down here. To have him in the lineup is huge. Clackson is a pretty tough kid. It just shows the damage this guy can do. It’s nice to see him get out there and fight, for sure.”

Sheldon Souray: "That’s one thing I wanted to come here and make sure these guys knew is that I’m in it with them. We’re all in the same boat. We’re all here to try to make the NHL. I didn’t want anything less to show on the ice.”
His quote says it all. We're all here to try to make the NHL.  Where the Edmonton folks want him to stay out of scrums, try not to get hurt, retain any and all value, while they work the phones.  He'd rather play his game; regardless where; the same game that unfortunately gets him into injury trouble, that same game where he consistently stands up for his teammates (5 times plateauing over 100 PIMs).  That sounds like the exact opposite kind of guy he's been portrayed by just about everyone, everywhere.

So you can add Sheldon Souray to the laundry list of guys who've moved on from Edmonton: Chris Pronger, Ryan Smyth, Joni Pitkanen, Erik Cole, Lubomir Visnovsky, and on.

Maybe it's time for Edmonton to look at how they do business.
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.