You need adversity? Take this!

Friday, January 2, 2009

But first, I would like to extend my deepest condolences to the family of Don Sanderson.

Don Sanderson died today, three week after suffering a concussion when his head - without a helmet on - struck the ice following a fight. Sanderson, a York University undergrad, was just 21 years old and played for the OHL Whitby Dunlops team. I was just talking today about NHL players and how you never know when your career can suddenly end. I was referring mainly to concussions that while they were potentially life altering and definitely career ending were certainly not life ending. I never thought that I would come home to read about someone actually losing his life after suffering a concussion during a game. This is very sad and tragic accident that could and maybe even should have been avoided or prevented. My thoughts and those around the hockey world are definitely with Don Sanderons' family in this difficult time.

Pre-Game Rant

Simply put, we all know that the Habs perform better when they play good teams. It's just something weird in their brains that they feel like they can only put a solid effort out against good teams - okay, okay, so they look like they may have changed that now. We're getting off topic now. Moving on. Even though the Devils are ranked behind the Habbies, they're still a very good team who only needs three points to catch up to them. The Habs lack of a finish last time these two teams met doomed them and it was the Devils who took away the win.

Tonight I want to see the Habs working really hard. We need this win. And I think it can be pulled off provided everyone puts in a solid effort. Everyone includes you guys on the top line! I really don't like the fact that this time is filled with Hammies but said Hammies have been doing well so it's just a matter of them not freezing up tonight. We also need a solid effort from Halak which I know he is capable of giving provided he gets enough help up front. The Habs have already proven that they can put up a wonderful effort in front of Halak (against the Flyers and the Flames).

The lineup for tonight seems to be thus:

A. Kostitsyn - Plekanec - Kovalev
S. Kostitsyn - Lang - D'Agostini
Latendresse - Lapierre - Kostopoulos
Begin - Chipchura - Pacioretty

Markov - Komisarek
Hamrlik - Gorges
Boullion - Brisebois

With Denis acting as the back up back up goalie

So no Weber tonight. Let's hope Brisebois is up to not getting knocked around tonight...

Post Game. That was pathetic.

Oh man.. where do I begin with this one? I had hope tonight but I guess I was putting too much hope into a team that is barely holding together at this point. In all fairness, the Hammies didn't even get to practice with the rest of them until what.. this morning? Yeah, you're really going to get stuff working in a few hours. Yes, it's sarcastic hour again. And the Devils are obviously coping without Brodeur just fine, thank you very much. I'm too tired to do something that looks like a proper write up so I'll just list random notes.
  • On the outcome: Habs fall 4-1 in Newark. Isn't that also the name of a city in England?
  • What happened to my plea for the rest of the team pulling their weight? I really didn't like what I saw out there tonight. I'm probably exaggerating slightly here but to me it seemed like the only guys I saw really making an effort were the usual Lapierre/Latendresse/Kostopoulos line and the fourth line of Begin/Chipchura/Pacioretty.
  • Proof that only a few people were working: In fact it was the Hammies who scored. Pacioretty got his first goal in the NHL on his first game and it was the Habbies who screwed up and allowed those Devils' goals. Markov is usually very good but that lame attempt at clearing the puck lead directly to the third or whatever number it was- goal by the Devils. We can thank Josh Gorges for the fact that it wasn't 5-1 when he saved the puck from being pushed in by Denis.
  • Why the Devils scored so much: There were just too many two on one/three on one/god knows what else rushes towards the net by the Devils. It was getting to the point where I was freaking out every single time they came near the net.
  • On goaltending: Clemmensen was being Clemmensen and did well. I can't say spectacular because he wasn't given the opportunity to be spectacular. I don't understand was Halak was pulled for the third period when it was only 3-1. Yes, he should have stopped a couple of those goals but then again there shouldn't have been any odd man rushes by the Devils. I have no idea why Carbo put in Denis. He was clearly floundering a lot more than Halak was. Also, how wonderful can you expect the guy to be when he doesn't get to play that much?! Of course he's going to be rusty. And yes, Carbo, I know, should have been better but honestly....How were those lame passes up front, the lack of any real attempt at a shot on goal and all the odd man rushes, Halak's fault? Halak takes the blame for the soft goals but everyone else takes their share of the blame for the lack of effort up front. And Marc Denis is clearly in the AHL for a reason. I want Price back *sniffles* GET BETTER SOON CAREY! Your team obviously can't handle your absense (you realize that we're like the Devils were supposed to be without Brodeur tonight?? The irony of the situation is killing me).
  • I have run out of things to say about the powerplay. You know... after seeing the Bruins run over the Pens, I couldn't help but notice how they just pepper the net with the puck when they have the powerplay. They don't waste time passing it around and trying to get that one good shot like a certain other team I could name right now. Sure, that type of play can be dangerous and it can lead to an attempt at a short handed goal but more often than not it leads to an inevitable goal. In theory the more shots you take the higher your chances are of scoring. We all know how theories work but in this case the Bruins are proving it right. I find it very ironic that the whole idea of the penalty expiring for one side once the other side scores was brought in because the Habs supposedly had too good of a powerplay in the '50s. The irony kills so much right now.......Oh wait, I'm already dead from the previous incredibly ironic incident. Right... *dies again anyway*
  • So now what? We freaking regroup and smash the Panthers and restore our winning ways. They can regroup from this. They can come out with the guys they've got now and beat almost anyone out there.

    Wow, there I go being the incredible optimist now. Something is clearly very wrong.


I only caught the end and I nearly fell off my chair in shock when I saw the score. I can't believe this at all. I was pegging the US to run over Slovakia and even give the Swedes a run for their money in the semis. Well that really makes things interesting now. It will be Canada vs Czech Republic or Russia (I'm still going with Russia) and Sweden vs Slovakia in the semis. Wow...

Looking forward to the semis. As long as I survive tonight *g*

Canda gets Russia tomorrow

Russia 5 Czech Republic 1. I saw some of it and it was boring as the Habs power play. Russia did not dominate the game at all until the end. There was a lot of hitting in the game and lame attempts at goals. Particularly from Russia earlier on. It really looked early on like it would be pretty close. The Russian goalie is quite frankly awful and you have to give full credit to the Czechs poor offense for the fact that it wasn't closer earlier. But then of course the Russians turned it up and it was byebye. Canada's going to have to do some work in trying to shut down the offense of the Russians. I think once they get to the net whoever, things shouldn't be too bad. If the Russian goalie plays like he did tonight against the Canadians then Russia could very well be doomed. But we shall see.

I think I may just have to see how Slovakia holds up against Sweden tomorrow.


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