Tuesday, December 30, 2008

last game of the year

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Tonight's game against the Bruins will be the last game for 2008.

Also tonight, Sidney Crosby will be playing his 250th regular season game, and Jordon Staal will play his 200th regular season game, making him the youngest player in the history of the NHL to do so.

Oh and good news (hopefully), Hal Gill is back in the lineup for the Pens tonight against one of his former teams, the Bruin's. With that, the Penguin's will be dressing 7 defensemen for this game. Hey, can never have too much defense, and I'm guessing MAF would agree especially since they've left him hang out to dry a few times in the last couple games.

It's been thrown out there that the Bruin's are the best team in the Eastern Conference, hell someone on VS 2 weeks ago said the whole NHL. I'm not disputing they are good, because they are kicking some serious butt right now. And I thank the Pensblog for pointing out the fact that their schedule has been rather soft for the month of December. Check it out for yourself HERE.

Tim Thomas is hot right now, and it can be argued he should have been on the All Star ballot. The Hockey News had a solid interview with him a few weeks back. Another read for me that changed my opinion on a player. The other was with Martin Brodeur... heh.. both goalies, what a coincidence. (I half expect a comment from my husband on this, something Fleury related... I'll say it right now.. GET OVER IT!) Anyhow, Thomas is playing some great hockey and should not be underestimated in the slightest.

With that we await game time, and my parting thoughts on the Bruin's ?

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Saturday, December 27, 2008

You'll find me....

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To Hab and to hold.. only to kick their ass

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Yay team, a win against the Devil's last night 1-0 has left me feeling a little more optomistic about the whole scheme of Penguins hockey. Not that I was in desperation mode yet, probably far from it. But think about it, when you're down on yourself (in this case, team) what can pick you up more than a good win? Especially when it's against the likes of the Devil's.

And gaining a solid two points put the Pens ahead of New Jersey in the conference, and in doing the same tonight to the Canadians, would help us gain some ground on them.

Add into the fun to be had tonight all the controversy of the Hab's padding the All-Star ballot box. Only to have Sid and Geno, and now even Fluery surpass all the Canadian's. w00t!

No former Penguin Georges Laraque tonight... he's nursing his groin.. ok, that sounds funny to me.

I'm ready for some good solid hockey tonight. Last night's game was a bit... as typical for New Jersey, yawnish. MAF played solid, which was good to see. Just need to kick some of those point makers in the rear and get some goals :P

Let's Go Pens!!!

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Friday, December 26, 2008

Old new faces in New Jersey

Once again the Penguins have dipped into the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton pool for replacement players, recalling Paul Bissonnette and some dude named Dustin Jeffrey. Bissonnette has played a few NHL games with the Pens, so he's not totally 'new' to things, Jeffrey on the other hand has played zero games in the NHL, as a forward he's collected 17 points with the Baby Pens.

New blood... let's hope it helps, and at this rate, nothing is going to hurt... well, maybe only for a little while *shrugs*

I'm guessing Ryan Whitney will be in tonight. Due to circumstances beyond my control (the Christmas party me and my husband were at Tuesday night was watching the Cav's game *gag*) I missed the game against the Lightning, though in retrospect, it was probably all for the best given it's outcome. So I can't say for sure how Whitney looked, but from my reading around the hockey sites and recaps he played quite alot of minutes. Good, get him going and doing something... anything... help?


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Not to beat a dead horse (penguin?) but the team seriously needs to get it's collective head out of their arses. Funny thing is, I bet the rumors of players starting to balk the rule of Coach Therrian are not totally unfounded. But it's crap not to play to your known potential, or even yet, what you're capable of as a professional athlete just because you don't agree with or like your coach. That's your job, you get paid for it. Maybe I'm just reaching here and those rumors are just that... rumors. He coached the same way last year as he did this year, at least I'm assuming. So, could it be a player that is upsetting the smooth flow of things? And if so, you'd have to guess it's someone who wasn't there last year. Ahh.. but this is all just speculation.

Frankly... who's here to guess all this garbage? Certainly not me. It is just one of those thoughts that sometimes pass thru my brain.

I'd like to personally thank the NHL for making my Christmas extra Merry. My husband rocks, and knows exactly what makes his hockey freak of a wife tick. I joked Christmas morning that NHL.com should send us thank you notes for helping to keep them afloat in this slumping economy. :P

Anyhow, game time is close at hand. No doubt the Devils arena will be at capacity... or crud... I forgot, this is New Jersey. Ok, so I'm sure it'll be at least half full tonight :P What a joke...

Let's go Pens!!!

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

how bad can it get?

Winning a controversial game in OT against Buffalo is nothing. Having those 'haters' talk crap against Sidney Crosby I can turn a blind eye to.

Losing to the Tampa Bay Lightning... worse than a broken bone...

Monday, December 22, 2008

losing track or just losing?

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Feathers McGraw... all bizness... here to put our pucks in your nets.

I hate that I've had two Saturday games go totally down the toilet on me. First the Flyers, then the dang Leafs. Gee, what's next, rubbing salt in open wounds? Certainly it'd be less painful than this.

Then tonight it's Buffalo. AND it's on Versus.. so much for mercy. Thomas Vanek is still red hot. All we can hope for is one of the ref's curse at Ryan Miller again, and that'll send him off crying for his mommy. Hey, I can hope, can't I?

All that said, and trust me, it's been said a gazillion times already, the Pens need to do something. You can only play the injury card so many times. The games against Philly and the TML's they just didn't even seem to be into it at all.

C'mon guys... I know you can do it.

Just think of that long, cold bus ride home if you lose.

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Saturday, December 20, 2008

a night for nostalgia

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The Penguins are breaking out the new 'old school' jerseys tonight against the Toronto Maple Leafs... damn, that is one good looking jersey isn't it? Adding to the old time feel, Marc Andre Fluery and Dany Saburin are wearing vintage looking brown pads tonight and tonight only, after which they will be donated to charity. Not really sure how that works, I'm guessing the said charity then auctions them off to raise money. Cool..

After savoring a rather dubious and easy win the other night in Atlanta, it's sort of nice to come back home to the igloo for a game against the TML's. Sure, sounds odd to say, and ok, maybe I'm not sure why I say that but it being Saturday night, and playing the Leafs, it really only means one thing. Hockey Night in Canada will be in town. Lots of exposure all over the place for the Pens. There is always a lot of action between the two teams, and it would be nice to see Don Cherry's two favorite players (note the sarcasm) in Crosby and that selfish Evgeni Malkin (yeah, that was more sarcasm there) do there thing tonight and kick some Leaf butt for all of Canada to see. :)

There was also another reason I mention nostalgia in the title for today's post. I'll use any reason to post this picture... sue me, I'm shameless like that.

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Though this years Winter Classic will no way be as exciting (at least for myself) as last years, Sean Leahy's Going Five Hole posted this really interesting clip of them unloading one of the Zamboni's after it's arrival in Chicago. I'm still lol'ing over..... ZUI. heh...

Soon it'll be game time... and until tomorrow kiddies......

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

time to move forward

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Alright, I think I've composed myself (barely!) after that sloppy showing on Saturday against those freakin' Flyers. The 9-1 win against New Jersey 2 nights before that wasn't enough to make me any less complacent with that loss to Philly. Yes, I hate them that much...

BUT! Today is a new day, and a hockey night at that, so we shall strive to put the latest tradgedy out of our mind, and move on to Atlanta. At 10-16-4, they aren't burning up the standings ( or attendence if you watched any of their home games ) in 13th place. With the Islanders and Tampa Bay the only teams with worse records. The Pens on the other hand at 16-10-4, could really use a kick in the pants to get them up out of 7th place in the Eastern Conference. It's tough looking up at Philly and Washington above us.

So has anything changed since Saturday's poor effort in Philly? Remains to be seen. Sidney Crosby was quoted as saying after practice Dec. 16th that the Penguins just didn't want the win as badly as the Flyers did. Yeah, it showed. Sorry fellas, I love yinz, but you need to kick it up a notch, despite the fact that injuries abound. The Caps also are bogged down with injuies and look where they are? Same with Montreal.

It's beyond me why the power play just isn't working. Here is hoping that Fluery being in the net tonight will give the Penguins a much needed boost.. or something. I know me and my husband conflict about the talents of MAF (he's wrong, btw!) but Sabu was gonna kill us slowly if he had to keep being the top goalie.

In other parts of Metropolis....

A new happy LOL place to go, and if you were honest with yourself, who doesn't get enough lol stuffs in their life? For the hockey lovers, we have our own in nhLOL . It gives me a happy face.

Mats Sundin... does anyone even care anymore? And Peter Forsberg... again I say, who cares? There seriously needs to be a deadline put in place for teams wanting to sign on some of these guys so late into the season. Granted Sundin is healthy (we assume) but c'mon, make up your mind or move on, and Forsberg, who in their right mind, the Av's I guess, would want someone who can't stay healthy or contribute for more than a handful of games?

And woohoo! How 'bout those Blue Jackets taking out the Sharks last night? Swwweeeeeettt...

Top 10 overpaid NHL'ers... we agree with #8..

Regardless what you think of Jason Blake, as a hockey fan you gotta love this shoot out goal against the Devils the other night. I caught the tail end of this game and saw this goal.. it's the bomb! Gotta love the spinarama!



Sean Avery is not in his behavioral health program? Is any one shocked? Does anyone care?

When you're watching tonights game... don't forget this, we won't... from the 2:45 mark on..



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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

On to Joisee

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Yes.. I like saying Joisee instead of Jersey. In my early days on Al Gore's internet, I knew a guy in New Jersey who had the typical accent for the area, and I'd laugh at his pronounciation of alot of words. He was a good friend, and tonight I'm guessing he'll be watching his Devils. Where ever you are Wayne... you're going down :P

Now, in a perfect world... one where the Penguins won the Cup... this game would not concern me. Some of it because old Marty is still out nursing his elbow, and also because we beat the Devils the last time we played them.

Ahh, but this isn't a perfect world, and the Pens power play is sucking harder than ever. The other night against the Sabres was a classic and all too painful example of that. You need to score on 5 on 3's, and when you get that many power play chances with the leagues top two scorers on your team, who also are on the pp line... you'd hope for a little more than what we're getting.

The Devils are 14-8-2, so it's not like they totally stink either...

Some may say that Sabu really held it together for the Pens in the third period the other night, well I for one cry foul on that one. Sure, the third period he did play solid, but what about those 2 crap goals he literally watched slide by him earilier on? I want MAF back... now.

And now we're down another defenseman, Hal Gill is going to be out 2-4 weeks. :(

All these inuries are really starting to be a drag. It's obvious Mike Zigomantis is missed in the face off circle. But the situation is what it is. Just have to wait for these guys to get healthy.

So it's game day and time to get things rolling! LET'S GO PENS!!!

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Monday, December 8, 2008

Looking for a win

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So things have been a bit of a mish mosh of late, in regards to the Penguins. Sure we lost to the Rangers... but we then beat the Hurricanes. But dang it, losing to the Sens (keeping with their nasty 3rd jersey's) was just not something I wanted to do. They suck, remember?

Oh well, what are you going to do. All is fair in love and war... but hockey???

Tonight the Penguis are going up against the iffy Sabres at the Mellon. I say iffy because you just never know what you'll get from them. Last time around we were in Buffalo, this time we're at home with our fans.

So let's do this guys....

LET'S GO PENS!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

New York Disappointment City

Ahh where to start? And do I really want to?

What is it about Madison Square Garden that makes it so tough for us to win a game there? Are the Rangers like Superman within the fortress of solitude, and the building is our gryptonite? Alright, I'm stretching it a bit, but I digress...

Seriously though, as hot as the Pens have been, I sort of had hoped things would have ended a bit differently. But watching the game recap on the NHL Networks "On the Fly" this morning, and being told that the Penguins have the WORST power play on the road in the whole NHL, it was no wonder we lost.

Shall the Pens google search 'score on power play' ? Guess it couldn't hurt.

Also, the Rangers have played 3 more games than anyone else, how'd that happen? And up until last night, they were 7-1 in their shoot outs, so yeah, it was lucky for them that it went to the shoot out. They have a couple key players, mostly their goalie Lundquvist ... and is it me or does he look really 'puffed' up with all his padding? Sabu looked like one of the munchkins from the Wizare of Oz in comparrison.

All is well is supposed to end well, and last night it didn't. I find it hard to be too critical (does it seem like it??) because the first period they played relatively well and looked good. I'm losing my faith (what little I had) in Sabu, and would really like to hear what the deal is with Fleury. So he's practicing with the team... c'mon give us a hint here, something to look forward to!

But tonight we go into Carolina, and that could go any way. Mostly since the Pens just played last night, and this will be the Hurricanes first game with new/old coach Paul Maurice. I didn't much like the other guy anyway, but seriously folks, Maurice was fired a few years ago for not winning, he couldn't do much for the Toronto Maple Leafs (though that's not really all his fault!), so what is he magicly going to do now? Anyone's guess.

So, time to put last night's 2-3 loss behind us and get on with tonights game.

LET'S GO PENS!!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Avery suspended lol

Yahoo is probably about the last stop I make for reading hockey related news, but just sitting down here and signing in, what headline catches my eye?

Avery suspended indefiniely by NHL
Makes you wonder if he does this crap on purpose, or if he really is that trashy and classless. His mentors at Vogue would be so shocked.

My take on it? Couldn't happen to a better schmuck. Stay classy, Sean.

the economics of hockey

I love XM radio, and because of that I get to hear lots of hockey stuffs. One of my favorite programs on the Home Ice channel is the War Room. The show is only an hour long, and it holds my attention the whole time. NHL Live is good, but it's spread out over 2 hours and tends to 'wander' a bit at times.

Anyhow, one of the reasons I like listening to the War Room is that everyday they tend to ask a question (hockey related of course) and the listeners phone or email in their views to said question. One of these days I hope to make it on!

Today would have been a good day for me to voice my opinion on the question at hand. They were asking if the current economic situation would affect you as a hockey fan, of if you thought it would affect teams in the NHL that are not drawing the crowds that they need to survive.

In my own personal opinion, in regards to the Penguins, I'm not sure. I think the potential is there. Heck, that said, same is possible for every team. But the Pens are also not the Atlanta Thrashers who can't fill their arena, or even the Stanley Cup winners the Detroit Red Wings, who are so desperate to sell a ticket they are pushing some for only $9.

Sure, Pittsburgh is as economicly hard up as the next metropolis, but with the coming of 'the next one' aka Sidney Crosby, hockey sort of had a rebirth of sorts in the 'Burgh. With that also came lots of corporate ticket sales. Companies buying up large numbers of Mellon Arena seats making it more difficult for us small, loyal hockey fans to get tickets to watch our beloved team.

Everyone wants their team to sell out their home ice arena. That much is a given. But I ponder this question. So let's say the economic status being what it is, starts to affect these coroporations that have sunk money into seating and suites at the Mellon, that they need to cut back on expenses and let their Penguins tickets get cut out of their budgets? Seems reasonalbe enough? Right?

Will the average hockey fan be able to make up for this loss of revenue, and fill those seats. The way things are now I would say... yes. The Pens are a hot commodity and as long as Sidney Crosby is playing in Pittsburgh everything will probably be fine. There is a big but here...

If corporations can't afford to buy blocks of tickets, will you and I be able to? I only get to one maybe two games a year due to not living that close to Pittsburgh. So if economics being what they are, if Joe Businessman can't afford tickets, maybe the guy walking the street worked for him and doesn't have a job anymore?

Ok, so I'm getting way too analytical than I normally am on here, but this topic really got me to thinking. I can safely say that I would not be upset if more tickets were easier to get to Pens games ( I mean I have to go to Columbus to see my team??? ) but the devoted fan that I am I will be happy just seeing them in any way that I can, be it Center Ice, the internet.. you name it.

Mr. Massie would be so proud of me right now, who's to say that Milton Friedman book on economics I was supposed to read in the 10th grade (and didn't) was totally lost on me. :)

Go Pens!!

Monday, December 1, 2008

that OTHER Pittsburgh newspaper

I tend to forget about that other newspaper in the 'Burgh. I blame Seth over at Empty Netters for that, since he works for the Post Gazzette, and frankly I like the work he does. And during my usual morning walking across the vast internet looking and reading all things hockey related, I somehow stumbled across a link for the Trib. Not even sure why I never look there for Penguins articles, since Joe Starkey who writes about the Pens for them, is also a major contributer to the Hockey News.

I'm guessing there has to be SOME reason for this avoidence. Will it continue... eh.. probably.

All this aside, I did find an old article... a couple weeks old... about Jordon Staal that was a pretty decent read. My favorite part of it was this:

Some of us -- most notably Shero -- have not wavered in our opinion of Staal, no matter his natural inconsistencies as a young player. It's not often one comes across a 6-foot-4, 225-pound beast with soft hands, a powerful stride and superior hockey sense.

And who says he'll never score 40 goals or be a consistent 30-goal scorer?

I'm not saying he will. I'm saying he already has a 29-goal season (Ryan Malone doesn't) and has scored nine goals in 25 playoff games (same as Crosby).

You can read the rest of Joe Starkey's article HERE.

Seems I am still kicking some butt in the little fantasy hockey league me and my husband are in. Of course, there is just the two of us, but we each have two teams. Oh... and might I add, he has Crosby AND Malkin? My teams are first and second place respectively. Go me :)