Monthly Archives: April 2010

Time to nut up or shut up

That’s all there is to it. Just win.

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We’re going to Game 6

Now isn’t this getting completely frustrating? I did predict that Halak standing on his head would be the difference between a 4 and 6 game series, but this shit is starting to get really aggravating. The power play is woeful, only cashing in once in nearly 25 tries. Semin and Brooks Laich have been COMPLETE no-shows, Tyler Sloan has gotten a sweater in 2 games, Fleischmann looks like an AHL’er out there, and the Caps have STILL controlled the vast majority of 5 on 5 time.  Some shit that I think really needs to happen for game 6

-Shaone Morrisson better get the sand out of his vagina and get back into the god damn lineup. We simply cannot afford having Tyler Sloan out there. At all.

-So much for that Mike Green injury excuse from last year am I right?  His defensive play has been downright awful, but what makes it even worse is how flat-out bad he’s been offensively as well. Pucks have been flubbing off his stick all series, he’s not starting rushes,  he’s making decisions at a snails pace, and he can’t get the puck on net. No more bullshit, no more excuses, time to show the fuck up Green. Fucking lazy.

-Why do all of our defensemen feel the need to chase the puck carrier below the goal line? It’s like watching a Tee-Ball game where every player on the field just gaggle-fucks towards the ball. Doing that has probably led to greater than 50% of their goals this series. Tyler Sloan doing that left the slot wide open, and allowed the Habs to score that second goal. CUT OFF THE PASSING LANES INSTEAD OF USING THREE PLAYERS TO CHASE ONE OF THEIR GUYS AROUND THE ICE. That isn’t a style of play issue, that’s flat out bad coaching and/or bad decision making.

-Joe Corvo has been terrible. He gives the Canadiens the blue line way too easily, and lets them rip shots from the slot virtually unmolested. Like Green, he hasn’t been productive at all on offense either.

-Tomas Fleischmann should have been scratched tonight. He’s been a step or two slow all series, hasn’t gotten any shots on goal, and hasn’t set up any goals. He’s terrible at faceoffs, doesn’t play defense, doesn’t kill penalties, takes penalties, and has made poor decision after poor decision in the defensive zone. We have Scott Walker waiting, and he’s shown the ability to bust his ass, play with speed, play physically, and occasionally make something happen on offense. Give him a god damn shot.

-The only Dman who has played worth a DAMN has been the 20 year old John Carlson. He’s made great decisions at both ends of the ice, and has a knack for getting pucks on net. WHY HASN’T HE GOTTEN ANY POWER PLAY TIME?

-Has anyone seen Alex Semin? Granted he got some very solid shots on net tonight that Halak somehow came up with stops on, but still, one assist in 5 games for a player of his caliber? Wake up Sasha.

-I didn’t know you could call a too many men penalty along with a slash and only give the team a 5 on 4?

-That roughing call on Fehr was a fucking joke

-That slashing call on Corvo was a fucking joke

-Can the Caps play just one whole game, just one whole fucking series, up to their capabilities? I understand that a healthy Montreal is better than an 8 seed, and their style of play matches up well against the Caps, but there’s no excuse for the Caps play in some of these games this series. They need to come out and stomp on the Habs’ throats Monday. Score a couple early on them and they WILL crumble. Don’t give them any life. Just win.

-Nasty Nate

late edit: Why does Tyler Sloan get to play, while Alzner wallows in Hershey? I can’t think of a good reason.

-Eric Belanger took a stick to the face, ended up losing 8 teeth, had a root canal between periods, and I don’t think he missed a shift. That’s bad fucking ass. Some of the guys on the team need to take notes.

The 2009-2010 NHL Playoffs (Predictions)

The matchups are set, the schedule’s locked in, and the greatest time of the year is upon us-NHL playoffs season. Time to forget about Presidents’ trophies, Hart discussion, the Art Ross race, the Rocket Richard trophy. This time around, only one trophy matters. In this post I’ll be giving a run-down of the Eastern conference matchups, which are slated to start this Wednesday.

Washington (1) vs. Montreal (8)

First up are the home-town Caps, who will be tangling with the Montreal Canadiens in the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. All things considered, the Canadiens may be a little bit better than the 8-seed indicates, as they’ve been wrought with injuries to important players for most of the season. The Caps and Habs split the series, going into OT in 3 out of 4 games. This Habs team is suffering from an affliction known as “Even Strength AIDS”, as they have the worst 5-on-5 goals ratio out of teams in the playoffs, good for 22nd in the league.

Their power play, however, is another story. The Habs score at a 21% clip with the man-advantage, which checks in at 2nd in the league. The key to this series is special teams. Halak could stand on his head and steal a game or two, but that can be said about any goaltender in the playoffs. The Caps staying out of the box/killing off penalties when they don’t will make the difference between this series going four games or six. That being said, the Caps will be too much too handle 5 on 5, the Habs defense is very slow, and their corps of forwards are very small, so they likely won’t be able to keep up with a large, physical Caps team for a 7-game series.

Verdict: Caps in 5

New Jersey (2) vs. Philadelphia (7)

After pulling out a shootout win against the Rangers on the final day of the season, the Flyers are in the playoffs as the 7th seed, and draw Jersey in the first round. The Flyers have a lot of talent on their team up front, and a solid bunch of defensemen as well. Jeff Carter is back from a foot injury, which should give them a boost, and their special teams play is very good (PP is 3rd, PK is 11th). That being said, their goaltender is Brian Boucher. I repeat, Brian Boucher. I don’t want to sound like a broken record but special teams will play an important role in this series. I have a hard time believing that Boucher will be able to hold it together for a 7-game series.

The Devils have a very solid overall team, and with the addition of Ilya Kovalchuk, should be able to generate some offense despite their late-season power play troubles. Philly took the season series over New Jersey, losing only 1 game out of 6, which should give Devils fans some pause, but how that will impact their play in the postseason remains to be seen. Honestly, this is a wildcard series. The Flyers were among the Stanley Cup favorites coming into the season, but injuries to their #1 and #2 goaltenders kind of put them on the backburner, and forced them to fight for their playoff lives. I could see them advancing in a 7-game series, but I don’t think that’s the most likely outcome.

Verdict: Devils in 6

Buffalo (3) vs. Boston (6)

If you’re looking for exciting, fire-wagon hockey, then you should probably look somewhere other than this series. In one corner you have the lock Vezina Trophy Winner (Ryan Miller), against a Boston team with the worst, I repeat, the worst goals per game in the NHL. Add in that the B’s #1 center (Marc Savard) is out for the duration, and you can only expect that average to go down. They also have 3 of their top-6 Dmen currently out, though they can still play a solid defensive system, that isn’t as reliant on personnel to stifle opposing offenses. Goaltender Tuuka Rask has been excellent all season, but their problem isn’t keeping pucks out of their net (2nd in goals against/game), it’s putting them in their opponent’s. It’s simple, either their terrible offense is going to have to start scoring some goals, or Rask is going to have to stand on his head for the entire series. I wouldn’t bet on either.

Verdict: Buffalo in 5

Pittsburgh (4) vs. Ottawa (5)

This is an interesting series, because it features the defending Stanley Cup champions in the 4 spot (same as the past 2 years that saw them reach the finals and lose only to win it the following year), playing the team they’ve faced 3 times in the past 4 years. Most of the pundits are predicting the Penguins to roll through the Sens in 4 or 5 games, but I’m not so sure they should be so confident about that. Ottawa’s a big, physical team, that has historically shut down Crosby with a duo of Phillips-Volchenkov. They have two offensive stars in Daniel Alfredsson (who’s also excellent defensively) and Jason Spezza (Kovalev’s out with an ACL injury), as well as some grit up front. The key to beating the Penguins is forcing their peripheral players to have to bear some of the load. Shutting down one of the two-headed monster (Crosby and Malkin), while limiting the other is enough to beat them. No other team is as reliant on 1 or 2 players as the Penguins are with Crosby and Malkin. Expect Phillips and Volchenkov to face Crosby every shift, with Malkin drawing a combination of Carkner, Sutton, and Karlsson. Solid play for Sens goaltender Brian Elliott is essential.

The key for the Penguins is goaltending. Fleury’s been decidedly mediocre all season long, and I wouldn’t be as confident as Pens fans seem to be that him/their team will just “turn it on” for the playoffs. The difference between this year and last year is that last year they were the hottest team in the NHL going into the playoffs. This year, if you remove their 9-1 start, they’re close to a .500 team. The defense hasn’t been tight, the PP is in the bottom half of the NHL, and Marc Andre Fleury has been a sieve at the most inopportune times. Add in that the Penguins couldn’t beat any of the top teams in the East with any sort of consistency and you have a formula for a first-round upset. It seems like most people are picking the Penguins based on their cup run last year. Let me spell it out for you: they are not a very good team.

Verdict: Ottawa in 7

I may do the Western Conference later today, not sure yet.

-Nasty Nate

Player of the day 4/10/2010

Evander Kane-

Come on Ovie

With two games to go and the Presidents Trophy locked up, here is a list of things I hope happen:  The Stanley Cup being a given

  1. Ovie has 2 big games with goals scored.  This will hopefully result in him beating out Crosby for the Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy and beating Sedin for the Art Ross Trophy.
  2. With those two trophies, being in 2nd for +/- and his team taking home the Presidents Trophy, Ovie would be the clear favorite for a third consecutive Hart Trophy.  (If he isnt the favorite already)
  3.  Speaking of +/-, I would like to see Semin with 2 great +/- games causing him to jump into 5th in the league, and the top 4 remaining the top 4, resulting in Capitals dominating the top 5 (Shultz, Ovechkin, Green, Backstrom, Semin) in +/- for the league.  (I think that would be tight)
  4.  Our goalie play to be locked up, Jose I speak to you, and no potential goalie controversies going into, or happening in, the playoffs.
  5.  Montreal not to slipping into the 8th spot. I am fine with us facing the other teams but I would rather not see Montreal in the first round.
  6.  Overall very smooth and cohesive play by our team.
  7. Obviously, no one getting hurt and going into the playoffs with a full squad.

This was done in no particular order and done in a rush since I am at work and have a limited break.

-Smash

2009-2010 President’s Trophy Winners

With the Colorado Avalanche’s 5-4 OT win over the San Jose Sharks, the Capitals have clinched the 2009-2010 President’s Trophy, and home-ice advantage throughout the playoffs. Coming into this season Bruce had 4 goals in mind: 1). Win the division 2). win the conference, 3). Win the Presidents’ Trophy, and 4). Win the Stanley Cup. Three down, one to go. Congratulations boys, now let’s focus on the real season that lays ahead.