Thursday, November 27, 2008


It's Thanksgiving in the states and for some reason this holiday is always the hardest one for me being away from the States. Julie's generally gone; in her old job she was always in the "pre-holiday" sales mode so she was away and today she's in Italy. Anyway, all that to say, the drinking will start early today in celebration of our murderous forefathers:

I was kind of wasting time on Youtube and happened onto some Richard Thompson videos. I like Richard Thompson, but imagine my surprise when I found this video.

I think it's pretty good. It's better than Dolly Parton covering "Shine" and much much much better than this.

Anyway, I may be challenging Jeff for Death Manager of the year. I picked up Khabibulin on Tuesday and in his first start he exploded his groin (or something). He did make 20-some-odd saves and only let in one goal, but I started him over game-winning-goalie Ryan Miller last night. FUCK! He better really be DTD. I don't really like the remaining goalies on the FA list. And Khabi's been playing decent hockey this year.

*OVECHKIN 21 points in his last 9 games. That's why he's the #1 pick motherfuckers. He may single-handedly win me that liter bottle of Johnny Walker Blue that Jeff put up as a prize for the OHBFHL champion, right Jeff? It's written on the interwebs so it must be true.

*Scoring an empty netter should count as a goal, but you should not be able to call it a "natural hat trick" It's a fucking gimme, damnit Maklin.

*BUFFALO SABRES on a one-game winning streak. They started 8-2-2 and they're 10-8-3 now...that's not how to play this game.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Vancouver Canucks' Pavol Demitra, right, of the Czech Republic, and Sami Salo, of Finland, celebrate after Salo scored the game winning goal during the overtime period of an NHL hockey game against the Detroit Red Wings in Vancouver, B.C., on Monday Nov. 24, 2008. It all started with Marty going down with an injury for the first time in a billion career games. Then, GABBO's groin kept him out for all but 2 games since the start of the season. Then as soon as my trade for MAF goes through, he goes down with a "lower body injury". (Could you be more specific? Hangnail? Water-on-the-knee? Sprained scrotum? What?) To put the icing on the puck, Brenden "The Sun Won't Come Out To" Morrow (my leading PIMmer) tore his ACL asunder, and is done for the season.

The reports are in, and it's confirmed: I am the KISS OF DEATH. Now I remember why I don't play fantasy sports. Sure, I might be in second place due to a lucky 5-4-1 win by Kris, but that's also because half the managers in the league don't pay attention to their teams.

* In one of the most hilariously pathetic moments I've ever seen in a hockey game, the Canadiens' Ryan O'Byrne scored a game-tying "own goal" when he passed the puck back towards where JESUS PRICE used to be . . . not realizing he already left the goal for an extra skater on a delayed penalty.

Wow, that was a perfect backhand into the centre [sic] of the net! I couldn't do it better myself. (Honestly, I've tried.) Naturally, the Icelanders would end up winning in the shootout, causing the Bell Centre faithful to derisively chant his name from the rafters as he dejectedly exited the arena, embarrassed by his huge hockey boner. (Yeah, I'm trying to bring that word back into the lexicon to mean "gaffe" or "mistake".)

* In other news, JESUS PRICE IS HURT! Hurt that I didn't choose him on my NHL 2009 All-Star Ballot! I chose Timmy Thomas, who overall has better numbers and had to be written in. Apparently, crazy Montreal fans (redundant, I know) have stuffed the ballot box to put 5 of the 6 nominated Habs in the voting lead, despite the fact that none of their skaters are in the top 48 in scoring, Price isn't in the top 10 in GAA, and the team is below the Devils in goals scored. Not to be out-homered, I chose Elias and Parise from the Devils, and more overlooked yet deserving players like Devin Setoguchi, Marc Savard and Shea Weber, and not a single damn dirty Canadien. (They're allegedly hiding the votes over the last 2 days, so your votes don't really count as much as you thought they did.)

* Rob might be right: this current Rangers team plays an incredibly boring brand of hockey. They may not be up there with the 1995 Devils (who I actually enjoyed watching, because they won it all--ha) or the 2007 Red Wings, but they really have no exciting players and very little spark.

* Programming note: It's happened several times this season where there were three hockey games on local TV in the New York area on Saturday night, and they were all on SIMULTANEOUSLY. In fact, the Rangers and Isles each had their OT and shootouts going on at the same time, so it was impossible to follow. Hey NHL, if you want me to watch, STAGGER THE GAMES A LITTLE. Spread out the start times 15 minutes or so, that's all I ask. Last night was perfect: Rangers at 7, Islanders at 7:30 PM. One game was going on while the other was in intermission, and they didn't end simultaneously. (MSG probably does it so they can use the same postgame show and not pay those guys to work extra time, because those Cablevision-owning douchebags are notoriously cheap, but it seriously stinks.)

* SALO POWER! Canucks don't need no stinkin' Luongo (week-to-week with/without a groin) to beat the champs, with Sami Salo setting up the tying goal in the 3rd and scoring in OT to take down the Wings 4-3. This is the first time I've ever been impressed by anyone with the last name "Salo".

* GOAL OF THE WEEK. Yeah, it's a kid you might have heard of. Sidney Crosby, vs. Atlanta on 11/20/2008.

* NEW JERSEYS: The verdict is in and I think the new Tampa and Ottawa 3rd jerseys, with BOLTS and SENS written across the chest, are awful. They look like they're from the AHL or a beer league. If the point is to make more money, how many of those BOLTS jerseys are going to sell in South Florida? The Coyotes' new 3rds are slightly more appealing, but only because it reminds me of the Johnny Cash-voiced space coyote in "The Simpsons".

* There have been a lot of ugly hits so far in the league and so little done about them, and I've gotten to the point that I don't want to talk about them anymore. How about we take away the hard, fiberglass shoulder pads and replace them with old school foam ones? I guarantee you won't have anyone slamming guys face first into the boards from behind any more.

* Malcolm Gladwell, author of the interesting, thought-provoking (though somewhat flimsy) books The Tipping Point and Blink, has a new book out called Outliers, that begins with a study about Canadian junior hockey players, to try to illustrate how certain young boys get a headstart in their hockey careers due to both their talent and their surroundings. But the fact that I found most interesting is that it turns out that most hockey players were born in January. In other words, if your kid isn't born in the winter, don't bother buying him skates.

* TOTALLY UNRELATED MUSIC VIDEO OF THE WEEK. Kris passed along the video for Kathleen Edwards' "Hockey Skates" so I thought I'd post it. Yeah, she's Canadian, in case there was any speculation.

"I'm tired of playing defense and I don't even have hockey skates." This reminds me of Sarah McLachlan, a not-unpleasant song that you forget immediately after it's over. It's the aural equivalent of drinking Molson Ice.

In closing, even though I complain a lot about the NHL, I'm thankful for the sport of hockey. HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE! (Except the Canadians, who already had theirs.)

Thursday, November 20, 2008


With a title like that, I've set the bar awful fucking low. Let's see if I can live down to the expectations.

Apparently on the internets all the kids are doing "bulleted lists." It's sounds like a Sean Gayvery invention to me, but whatever: he makes more money than me.

* Whiskey (translation for the English/Scottish/Irish readers out there: whisky): Holy shit, I used to be fully in the beer camp, but I've swung into the whiskey camp with great zeal. Here's why: You open a beer and drink it. You open another, drink it. After a couple of these your significant other (or dog or conscience if you live alone) starts to give you the "how-many-of-those-have-you-had" look. There's a bottle-trail of your dependence on alcohol. Whiskey, you can pour yourself a small one, then another small one, etc...yes, this is all about justifying my consumption...But you know what - fuck you for judging, asshole.

Since, I've been in France I've "felt" my American roots more and more. Not that I'm ever going to be one of those balls-in-your-face Palin loving idiots, but (tangent alert) when some stupid cock of a Frenchman feels like he needs to criticize me because our democracy elected Bush, I do feel like punching the asshole in the head. So (tangent ending) I have been drinking bourbon (the Brownest of the brown liquors) whenever possible. But my choices are limited to Four Roses (which is surprising not horrible) and Makers Mark. I think there's a brand called "Wild Chicken" or something too, but that's horrible stuff. I can get Woodford Reserve, Basil Haden's and most of the other premium stuff, but it's so damn expensive that I can't justify it.
So the logical step is Scotchland...It's just so much closer, so there's obviously more choice.

Snap Drinky Drinky Review: Highland Park 12-year old Single Malt. Mmmm. I'm not a big fan of the whole "peat-fire-still-buring-in-the-bottle" aspect of some Scotch and Highland doesn't disappoint. It's actually quite sweet for a scotch, and it's not surprising, following my brief flirtation with bourbon, that I like this. I'm sure that many connoisseurs (did you know that the base "con" in French is dick or asshole? just saying) would find it below them. But damn it, it gets the Krusty Brand Open Hockey Seal of Approval.

* Fantasy Hockey: Is awesome because the "No Homers" club, managed by yours truly, is kicking major ass so far this season. Through 7 weeks, I'm undefeated in head-to-head matchups (Jesus Price saved my ass with a lackluster win last Sunday to defeat Kammann's Zelepukin Slappers/Kiss of Death team 5-4) and I'm a very respectable 35-12-8 overall.

* Fuck Nokia. Honestly. I changed my Blackberry Pearl for a Nokia E71 a couple weeks back. The Nokia is like a supermodel. So damn sexy that you want to take it into a bathroom stall the web with it. But it's also dumb as fuck. No built in push mail is like walking up to some really hot chick and asking her to go out with you and her lazy eye shoots up towards the sky and she mutters something about her cat liking catfood. Then there's the "Nokia PC Shite Suite". RIM has you install this little non-intrusive program to sync with Outlook. Nokia, this giant memory hog of a program that runs in the background all the fucking time (why the fuck would I want to send SMS messages from my computer, I HAVE A PHONE FOR THAT!) and won't shut off. I can't watch pirate videos anymore with this fucking thing installed because it makes VLC jump so much. I may learn to live with it - because it is fucking sexy and much more capable than my crackberry (I get TV on it!) for many things, but the change is the hardest part. I have a new found respect for those crazies from America's hat that invented the whole Blackberry system.

Anyway, I think I had other things to complain about...But whatever. I'll post again in the next 3 or 4 weeks. I promise!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


I'll admit it: I'm in a Marty funk. Devils games just don't have the same allure without #30 in between the pipes, especially when they face the Rangers tonight (It's Henrik versus . . . some other guy!). Sunday night's matchup between the Devils/Oilers featuring Clemmenson and Drowning-Delaioueiourois (sp?) was a low point for me.

However, every once in a while a game comes along and reminds me why I love this sport. Tuesday's rematch of last season's Cup finalists, the Red Wings and Penguins, lived up to the hype thanks to a furious finish by the latter. After being outshot 26-14 by the defending champs over the first 2 periods, and being down 5-2 and 6-4 in the game, Jordan Staal (finally) woke up and netted a hat trick in the 3rd, the final coming with 0:22.8 left to tie it 6-6. In OT, said Staal suavely stole the puck and fed Fedotenko for the winner with 1:11 left to seal it 7-6. This is why I watch this game. (And I'm glad it was a real shootout not decided by a fake shootout.)

After seeing Ozzy and MAF give up a total of 13 goals on 68 shots (34 apiece), maybe we don't need more rules and equipment changes to increase scoring, we just need more mediocre goalies. Marty Turco is certainly doing his part to raise the league average GAA. If you haven't seen this early Xmas gift he gave the Sharks yet, this is a microcosm of his season so far.

Speaking of Mr. Brodeur, this report regarding his surgery is officially weird: Report: Devils G Brodeur previously tore tendon. So are we saying he won a Vezina last year with a partially torn tendon in his arm? Or did all the fat jokes inspire him to workout in the offseason, and the injury was a result of lifting weights and overdoing it? (As this article posits, you can BLAME AVERY, or Puck Daddy, for all the donut jokes.) Regardless, I say he's going to be out for the year. Marty's done. Thanks for coming to Newark and drive safely!

This article is also interesting: "Lundqvist hoping to avoid injury bug". No, we don't want to jinx Henrik or anything. He's fine. What are the odds that he'll get hurt too? Pretty slim, right? It won't happen. Probably not. Forget we even brought it up, wrote about it, and put it online. It's not a big deal, because hockey players aren't superstitious. Nah.

* As for the other injured local goalie, what is the real story with Rick DiPietro? I realize that when you sign a player for 15 years, you have to take into account the possibility of losing him to injuries--but this is ridiculous. He's undergone surgeries on both hips and both knees (and suffered a concussion) in the 2+ years since he signed that ridiculous contract, which is a lot for a 27 year old player. Add to that the fact that his crappy ownership maybe put too much pressure on him by making him the man (and giving up on countless quality players around him), and Garth Snow is an invisible GM that apparently was only hired to be Ricky's life partner. This is a sorry franchise, and I almost feel awful that DiPietro has to be a part of it for the rest of his career, if he ever returns to the ice.

* Hockey announcer Mike "Doc" Emrick was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame this week and rightfully so. His play-by-play call is effortless, informative without being overwhelming, and entertaining without being flashy. Most of all, the crescendo in his voice during the height of action is impeccible; I can't even tell you how many Brodeur saves and Devils goals (and non-Devils plays) were made just a little bit better thanks to his announcing. I was also amazed by his ability to name all the foreign players during the Winter Olympics. By all accounts he's a consumate pro and an incredibly personable guy. Congratulations, Doc!

Monday, November 3, 2008



Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur to undergo surgery

Preliminary reports have him missing 3 -4 months. This is basically every Devils fan's worst nightmare come true. I just knew drafting him on my fantasy team would be the kiss of death. Well, since they rely on him more than any other team leans on their goalie, I'd have to say, "There goes the season". Ladies and gentlemen, your 2007-2008 Stanley Cup Champions, the New York Rangers!!! (Or insert your team name.)

I was going to complain about how stole my Marty Watch idea (they saw my blog, obviously, and renamed it "Brodeur Watch"; see right), but none of that matters now. Now we're looking at weeks and weeks of Kevin Weekes, with Scott Clemmenson to back him up--a not-so-dynamic duo.

What do they do now? Do they hope the backups can do their job in the meantime? Can they take Clemmenson and make Clemmenade? And after that doesn't pan out, will Lou acquiesce and get someone's cast off like Khabibulin or Fernandez or god only knows who? Will anyone show up to games at The Rock this winter (I won't)?

Add to this depressing news a weak defense that doesn't take the body or clear out the crease, an anemic offense, two questionable free agent signings already on the IR (Holik and Rolston), and this looks like a team that is severely screwed. I saw them as a 5/6 East seed WITH Marty; without him playing again until March, I don't see them making the playoffs at all.

Puck Daddy has a good article entitled "10 Biggest Aftershocks From Martin Brodeur's Injury". Hailing from Matawan (one town over from where I grew up), he nailed us Devils fans in this incredibly accurate description: "Devils fans are born cynics, both due to our systemic inferiority complexes and Jersey breeding." Exactly.

Fuck. This is the worst thing to happen to the Devils and Marty since Stephane Matteau got a lucky deflection off Fetisov's skate.

Hurry back, Marty.