I'm Sorry, What's Your Name Again?

Friday, February 29, 2008

Since I will be heading out of town this weekend, I thought I’d leave you all with a fun post inspired by THN’s Ryan Dixon’s post titled “Best names in hockey.” He ranked the top ten (10) hockey names by how well they rolled off the tongue. As I was perusing the various NHL rosters, I realized that there were names that could fit into any number of categories, which I separated out as such.

If you feel that there were any I missed, please let me know in the comments! Enjoy!

Silly Boys
Guillaume Latendresse (MON) - Bet you can't say that five times really fast
Radek Bonk (NSH) - Is he called Rady or Bonky?
Jordin Tootoo (NAH) - At least his first name is somewhat normal, but he still sucks
Dion Phaneuf (CAL) - Who is just plain silly
Wojtek Wolski (COL) - Wol…wolly…what’s that?
Teemu Selanne (ANA) - Salami??
Radim Vrbata (PHX) - Radim…I got nuthin
Jeremy Roenick (PHX) - The man more so than the name
Wade Dubielewicz (NYI) - Doo bee doo bee dooooo
Antero Niitymaki (PHI) - Nitty!

Names That Glide Off The Tongue
Miroslav Satan (NYI) - Will he ever get traded to New Jersey?
Ty Conklin (PIT) - And by “roll off your tounge,” I really mean “hop”
Maxim Afinogenov (BUF) - "My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius."
Vesa Toskala (TOR) - VESAAAAAA
Alexei Ponikarovsky (TOR) - So many nicknames could come from this name (Pony is the best)
Ilya Kovalchuk (ATL) - Pretty boy
Olli Jokinen (FLA) - You must be Jokinen
Jonathan Toews (CHI) - Toes? Tow-eys? Tows? TAVES??
Nikolai Zherdev (CBJ) - He's a BJ
Dominik Hasek (DET) - The Dominator or fish out of water?
Robyn Regehr (CAL) - Does this really roll off the tongue or am I just crazy?
Mikko Koivu (MIN) - Adorable name, adorable face
Roberto Luongo (VAN) - I think it's the curly hair that makes his name so smooth
Patrick O’Sullivan (LAK) - Just because I feel like it

Names That Make Me Chuckle
Fedor Tyutin (NYR) - I'll give you something to toot
Petr Prucha (NYR) - Chuckles for everyone
Jarkko Ruutu (PIT) - "I believe it's called jogging or yogging, it might be a soft j, but I'm not sure."
Tuomo Ruutu (CAR) - If I had to choose, I'd rather be named Tuomo
Tom Kostopoulos (MON) – Uncle Jessie!! (courtesy of Marie)
Jiri Tlusty (TOR) - Among other things
Radek Dvorak (FLA) - Like the other type of keyboard?
Duncan Keith (CHI) - Duncan Sheik
Jeff Finger (COL) - Always makes me sneer
Adam Foote (COL) - Do you realize that the Aves now have a Foote to go along with their Finger?
Derek Boogaard (MIN) - Boogie? Booger?
Niklas Hagman (DAL) - Do his teammates call him Haggy?
Martin Hanzal (PHX) - “It's that damn Hansel! he’s so hot right now!”

Are We Missing Some Letters Here?
Glen Metropolit (BOS) - There should be some more letters at the end of that...
David Krejci (BOS) - Krejci...avic? ...kov? ...slav?
Johan Hecht (BUF) - Excuse you
Matt Foy (MIN) - Foy...er?
John Pohl (TOR) - George and Ringo?
Ken Klee (ATL) - Klee...nex?
Tom Poti (WAH) - Tommy, we call it a restroom when we get older, not a poti


Honorable Mentions from the AHL

Dwayne Zinger (Providence Bruins) - Who names their kid Dwayne anymore? Oh, I just checked and he was born in 1976; I’ll let that slide. ZING!
Wacey Rabbit (Providence Bruins) - Elmer Fudd, is that you?
Jason Bacashihua (Lake Eric Monsters) - What?
Frank Grzeszczak (Erie Otters of the OHL) - I'm not even gonna try...

Read more...

"I'm Not A Puck Bunny" Podcast - Episode 3.5

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Finny and I got together to record a Trade Special episode that is available for your ears.

We recap what the Kings and Ducks did at the deadline and grade our respective GMs' performances. We then look at the big trades that went down and who were the winners of those trades. From there we move on to discuss those players who were rumored to be moved but actually remained with their teams and trade surprises.

Please feel free to email us any questions, comments, and/or thoughts at: imnotapuckbunny@gmail.com.

You can check us out here.



Click here to listen!!!

Read more...

Trade Day Reactions and Player Transactions

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Kings trade defensemen Brad Stuart to the Detroit Red Wings for a 2008 2nd round pick and a 2009 4th round pick.

Gone, but not forgotten.

I am upset with the trading of Brad Stuart. I knew it was coming; it wasn't a surprise, but honestly, it hit me in the stomach like a sack of pucks. He had been doing well in recent games and has proven to me that he wasn't as terrible as he had been at the beginning of the season. There were many other players that I could have parted with without feeling any separation pangs (i.e. Brian Willsie, Kevin Dallman, Ladislav Nagy, Scott Thornton (but I'd keep him over the 3 others mentioned), and Michal Handzus (was anyone else aware that he got a no-trade clause when he signed with the Kings??). But I also understand that these players aren't attractive to GMs because they do not produce like other players (read: younger) on the team, which obviously means that they wouldn't bring us anything useful in return. Obviously Stuart was the man to go and take one for the team because he DID get us 2 picks. This still upsets me.

Brad, if you re-sign with the Kings for next year, that would make me smile on the inside and out. I hope to see your long bombs from the blueline and throw downs along the boards soon. But I'm glad you went to Detroit because now you have a chance to win big, and we all know the saying, "Go big or go home."

Update 02/28/08: Here is an article from the Detroit official site on Stuart's beginnings with the team.


Kings trade Jean-Sebastian Aubin to the Anaheim Ducks for a 2008 7th round pick.

This makes me laugh.


Kings assign Teddy Purcell to Manchester.

This makes me roll my eyes in disgust.

Read more...

Trade Watching...Contract Watching...

Monday, February 25, 2008

TRADE WATCH
Feb. 26

- Tampa Bay Lightening acquires Brandon Segal (F) and a 2008 7th round pick; Anaheim Ducks acquire Jay Leach (D). TSN.

- Nashville Predators acquire Brandon Bochenski (F); Anaheim Ducks acquire "future considerations." TSN.

- Nashville Predators acquire Jan Hlavac (F); Tampa Bay acquires a 2008 7th round pick. TSN.

- Atlanta Thrashers acquire Joe Motzko (F); Washington Capitals acquire Alex Giroux (F). TSN.

- Anaheim Ducks acquire Jean-Sebastian Aubin (G); Los Angeles Kings acquire a 2008 7th round pick. TSN.

- Anaheim Ducks acquire Marc-Andre Bergeron (D); New York Islanders acquire a 2008 3rd round pick. TSN.

- Florida Panthers acquire Chad Kilger (F); Toronto Maple leafs acquire a 2008 3rd round pick. TSN.

- New York Rangers acquire Fredrik Sjostrom (F), David Leneveu (G), Josh Gratton (F), and a 2009 conditional draft pick; Phoenix Coyotes acquire Marcel Hossa (F) and Al Montoya (G). TSN.

- Detroit Red Wings acquire Brad Stuart (D); Los Angeles Kings acquire a 2008 2nd round pick and a 2009 4th round pick. TSN.

- Minnesota Wild acquire Chris Simon (F); New York Islanders acquire a 2008 6th round pick. TSN.

- Pittsburgh Penguins acquire Marian Hossa (F) and Pascal DuPuis (F); Atlanta Thrashers acquire Angelo Esposito (F), Colby Armstrong (F), Erik Christensen (F), and a 2008 1st round pick. TSN.

- Pittsburgh Penguins acquire Hal Gill (D); Toronto Maple Leafs acquire a 2008 2nd round pick and a 2009 5th round pick. TSN.

- New York Rangers acquire Christian Backman (D); St. Louis Blues acquire a 2008 4th round pick. TSN.

- Vancouver Canucks acquire Matt Pettinger (F); Washington Capitals acquire Matt Cooke (F). TSN.

- New York Islanders acquire Rob Davison (D); San Jose Sharks acquire a 2008 7th round pick. TSN.

- Washington Capitals acquire Sergei Fedorov (F); Columbus Blue Jackets acquire Ted Ruth (D). TSN.

- Colorado Avalanche acquire Adam Foote (D); Columbus Blue Jackets acquire 2008/2009 conditional 1st round pick and 2009 4th round pick if Foote re-signs. TSN.

- Ottawa Senators acquire Martin Lapointe (F); Chicago Blackhawks acquire a 2008 6th round pick. TSN.

- Carolina Hurricanes acquire Tuomo Ruutu (F); Chicago Blackhawks acquire Andrew Ladd (F). TSN.

- Colorado Avalanche acquire Ruslan Salei (D); Florida Panthers acquire Karlis Skrastins (D) and 2008 3rd round pick. TSN.

- Washington Capitals acquire Cristobal Huet (G); Montreal Canadians acquire a 2009 2nd round pick. TSN.

- Dallas Stars acquire Brad Richards (F) and Johan Holmqvist (G); Tampa Bay Lightening acquire Mike Smith (G), Jussi Jokinen (F), Jeff Halpern (F), and a 2009 4th round pick. TSN.

- San Jose Sharks acquire Brian Campbell (D) and a 2008 7th round draft pick; Buffalo Sabres acquire Steve Bernier (F) and a 1st round draft pick. TSN.

- Florida Panthers acquire Wade Belak (F); Toronto Maple Leafs acquire a 2008 5th round draft pick. TSN.

- New Jersey Devils acquire Bryce Salvador (D); St. Louis Blues acquire Cam Janssen (F). TSN.

*New York Islanders' Mike Comrie (F) signs a 1-year, $4 million contract.


Feb. 25
- Philadelphia Flyers acquire Vaclav Prospal (F); Tampa Bay Lightening acquire Alexandre Picard and a conditional 2009 2nd or 3rd round draft pick. TSN.

* Tampa Bay Lightening's Dan Boyle (D) signed a 6-year, $40 million extension.

* St. Louis Blues' Barret Jackman (D) signed a 4-year, $14.4 million extension.
* Detroit Red Wings sign Darren McCarty (F) to a 1-year contract ($535,000 US & bonus).
* Colorado Avalanche sign Peter Forsberg (F) to a $5 million pro-rated contract until the end of the year ($1 million).

Feb. 23


* Minnesota Wild' Nick Shultz (D) signs a 6-year, $21 million extension.

Feb. 22


* New York Islanders' Trent Hunter (F) signs a 4-year, $10 million contract.
* Toronto Maple Leafs' Alex Steen (F) signs a 2-year, $3.4 million extension.

Feb. 20 - Calgary Flames acquire Jim Vandermeer (D); Philadelphia Flyers acquire a 3rd round pick for the 2009 Entry Draft. TSN.

Feb. 19 -Philadelphia Flyers acquire Jaroslav Modry (D); Los Angeles Kings acquire a 3rd round pick in the 2008 Entry Draft. TSN.

Feb. 11
- Ottawa Senators acquire Cory Stillman (F) and Mike Commodore (D); Carolina Hurricanes acquire Patrick Eaves (F) and Joe Corvo (D).

Read more...

"I'm Not A Puck Bunny" Podcast - Episode 3

Saturday, February 23, 2008

There is another episode of the "I'm Not a Puck Bunny" podcast available for you, the listener.

This week we are finally joined by McPhizzle to make it a true Battle of California podcast. Once again, we recap the games from the past week and take a quick look ahead to the next week's games. We then take a look around the league at some of the big stories and delve a little deeper into the trade talk. We cap it off with our segment of Off Ice: Lord of the Rings Edition.

Heads up: Listen for a special appearance from Raitis Ivanans about half way through!

Please direct any questions, comments, ideas, or otherwise to: imnotapuckbunny@gmail.com

ENJOY!

Click me to listen!


Read more...

Stepping up: Kings 5, Blues 1 (PT)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Player Transactions:
- Jaroslav Modry was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers for a 3rd round pick in the 2008 entry draft.
- Peter Harrold was recalled from Manchester.
- Lauri Tukonen was reassigned to Manchester.
- Erik Ersberg was recalled from Manchester.
- Kings claim Matt Ellis off of waivers from the Detroit Red Wings.

Pre-Game:

- I made a sign for Army since he always looks out at the fans and acknowledges them during warmups. I thought he'd appreciate the message. I must say, he is a COMPLETE HAM and LOVES the attention. Oh yeah, I got a puck from him too. Score!

Cheeseball
1st Period:
- The Blues came out hard and had a really aggressive forecheck. Clouts fumbled the puck with his first shot on, which didn't help my confidence in the turn out of the game. And it didn't help that the Kings didn't get their first shot on until the clock said 15:33.
- The Blues also dominated the neutral zone more than the Kings did, and there were some big turnovers by the Kings. They were soft on the passes, soft on the hits, and many of them seemed to constantly be out of position.
- Good note: Handzus is using his body more. I always thought he was a little soft and hesitant to take the body, but he wasn't too bad in this period.
- To continue the pathetic...ness of this period, with 5:25 left, the Kings have only 5 shots on net. And these last 5 minutes were uninspired. The Blues were dominating and were clearly working with each other to set up in the neutral zone and enter the Kings zone like a line should. Kariya and McDonald were pretty feisty and jumping on any loose pucks. It seemed like whenever the Kings got the puck, their reactions were delayed. They were sometimes successful with the first pass out of their zone, but that second pass was more often than not foiled by a Blue. But even when they were able to get that second pass, they just dumped it in and went for a line change.
- This period was crap-tastic. Way to NOT show up guys!! The Kings had only 5 shots on to the Blues' 13.

2nd Period:
- The Kings are on the PK which they kill very nicely. I was actually pleasantly surprised!
- Kings PP - Kings Goal - Kopi (26) took a shot and Sully got the rebound and moved around a sprawling defender with superb patience and put it in the slot. Kopi came in and simply backhanded it past Legace (6:34).
- Kings Goal - Less than two minutes later Frolov (17) passes the puck to Sully from inside the Kings blueline in between his legs, Sully takes it up the right side through the whole neutral zone. He gets pinched on the right side inside the blueline and drops the puck off to Cammy who takes it all the way to the net but then passes back into the slot where Fro got the shot on (8:19).
- Kings Goal - Less than 3 minutes later Fro (18) nets his second of the night!!! Sully now has 3 assists (10:55). Umm, can we say studly??
- The Blues call a predictable timeout and I can catch my breath and reflect on what just happened in the last 10 minutes.
- What pissed me off: Clouts was basically taken out twice by two different Blues players. The first run-in was blatant and Clouts was slow to get up and collect himself. That drew ire from the crowd and we were pissed. The second time, Brad Boyes just completely jumped over Clouts' head and took him down again! JJ had had about enough of that and went after Boyes, thank god. That resulted in a goalie interference call (11:50), which should have come with the first run in!!
- Kings PP - Kings Goal - They convert this opportunity to shut the fucking door in the Blues' face. Sully (15) nets a sweet goal! Kopi was at the right half-boards where he passed to Stuart on the point. Stuart takes a long bomb and goes wide to the left of the goal. The puck bounces behind the goal to the right where Sully picks it up and puts it past Legace who couldn't get to his left fast enough. But I don't think he would have caught it anyway since Sully put it top shelf.
- Blues change up their goalie; Chris Beckford-Tseu. I have NEVER heard of this kid before.
- The Kings are now up 4-0 and the bodies are being thrown a little harder, the passes are landing correctly, but wouldn't you know it, we're still losing faceoffs!
- I want to highlight Jack Johnson. I was very impressed with his play in this game. He's making smart decisions with the puck, he's making sure he's where he's supposed to be on the ice. Did he just decide to mature overnight with Modry leaving? I was honestly a little sad when the crowd booed Modry when it was announced that he was traded. Do the people not realize that he was a consistent Dman? He didn't take the body like the other Dmen, but he always seemed like he was in the correct areas.
- Even Dallman is making a small showing. But you know who still sucks? BRIAN WILLSIE. He's turning the puck over and not helping to complete plays when momentum is going in their favor.

3rd Period:
- Kings Goal
- Okay, I will say that I am not sure Frolov (18) got this goal. It was given to him to get the hat trick, but I....have a feeling that it should have been Cammy's. They video reviewed it and I...don't...think I....agree with the outcome. So Cammy got in front of the net and essentially waited for the puck to come to him. Once he got the puck, he shoved it 5-hole past the netminder. As it was going in, Fro poked his stick in just add some insurance. I mean, it looked like he got some wood on it, but....I think it went over the line before Fro's stick got there.
- The crowd was demanding the hat trick from the officials. Fro, you know I love you, but I don't think that was yours. So you should just score another goal to really ensure that you got the hat trick!
- Right after this goal, Salvador and Scott Thornton start going at it; it's number 27 against 27. That's going to Thornton just because I feel like giving him the win. He definitely made a good showing for this game.

(AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian)
Someone is about to get domed.

- It's basically at this point where I think: Fro, Cammy, and Sully have been absolute studs in this game.

(AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian)
STUDS

- The Blues decide they need to attack and start pushing the Kings out and are preventing the Kings from getting in front of the Blues' goal. So it's here where I notice that WILLSIE is on a line with Brownie and Kopi.....REALLY, Crow??
- Kings PK - Handzus causes a turnover and makes up for it by taking a penalty! Clouts had to come in and save Handzus' ass by making a point blank save. Grrr..... But, this is a great PK. The Kings are making very smart moves and are holding onto the puck instead of dumping it every time they got a chance. The Blues got some shots on, and there was one shot where the whole arena thought it went in; even the light was going off. After a review, it was deemed no goal.
- Kings PP @ 11:31 - I think the Kings weren't too aggressive on this opportunity because they were up 5 to nothing. They were cycling and were looking for the more finesse shots than anything else.
- Kings PK @ 15:19 - Handzus takes another tripping penalty. This was just ridiculous; he did NOT need to do that. Yeah he lost the puck, but there was a defender there between the puck and Clouts. This was just a dumb move by the mullet-less man. Blues Goal - Martin Ruchinsky (15:58). Damnit, no shutout for Cloutier!

Game:
- Kings 5, Blues 1
- After an abysmal first 20 minutes, the Kings decide they want to win! That must have been one hell of a pep talk by the Kings' coaching staff. They looked like a different team at the start of the second period.
- Studs of the game:
** Sully - 1G, 4A, +3, 2 hits, 4 missing teeth
** Frolov - 3G, +3, 6 shots on net
** Cammy - 3A, +3, 5 shots on
* *Cloutier - 32 saves, another W

Read more...

Kings Figurines Set

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I am honestly REALLY embarrassed by this...

Read more...

Kings Practice & Another Go With The Yotes (PT)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Kings Practice and Player Transactions:
- Fro's brother is in So Cal and he was there watching the guys on the ice. They DEFINITELY look related.
- Brian Boyle was reassigned to Manchester (Feb. 17).
- Lauri Tukonen was recalled from Manchetser.
- During practice Cloutier was letting in soft goals, but of the rebound kind. I don't like how he frantically searches about for his rebounds. It doesn't instill too much confidence for me... And I still don't like his helmet. Maybe if he was as good as Hasek, I wouldn't mind it. Hrm.
- On Tukonen: I wasn't that impressed. I was definitely impressed when Purcell was recalled, but I guess there's a reason why Purcell is a stud in the AHL while Tukonen is just a foot soldier. I have no idea what he was putting up in Manchester, but maybe he'll make me eat my words in tonight's game. I hope so.
- I FREAKING HEART JEFF GIULIANO!!!

Pre-Game:
- The Kings played the Coyotes on Saturday without much success, so...let's hope for a W. We seriously can't lose ALL 8 GAMES against the Coyotes this season. I REFUSE!!!
- My thoughts go to Mickey Renaud's family and friends. He was 19 years old, the captain of the Ontario Hockey League's Windsor Spitfires, and Calgary Flames prospect (2007: 143). He collapsed in his home and was pronounced dead at noon today. Again my heart goes out to all those effected by this tragic occurrence.

1st Period:
- Bryz is NOT in net!!! Sweet!! We got Mikael Tellqvist tonight.
- The play is starting out hard and fast. JJ got a big hit off and Tukonen went for a hit but took the worst of that one. Ouch.
- Kings PK - Coyotes Goal - Jovanovski...uhh...yeah (3:45).
- Coyotes Goal - The pace started to pick up with bodies all over the place; the Kings set up a good trap but there was a turnover at the Kings blueline, and Vrbata gets a breakaway toward Barbs (5:06). They get 2 goals in 1:21. Crap.
- I think the problem is that with 6 minutes in, we have ZERO shots on net.
- At 11:54 - I just saw Purcell execute two plays in a row that the Kings practiced this morning. I actually think that's pretty cool.
- Dallman - HIT on Perrault. Nice.
- Sully, Purcell, and Fro on a line. Hmm... Crawford, Crawford, Crawford.
- Kings PK - This is actually a really good kill. The Kings have possession and are holding on to the puck. They're also getting shots on in a short-handed situation.
- Kings PP - The Coyotes do a good job on this kill. Blah.

2nd Period:
- Note to Jack: Don't pick your nose on the bench please.
- Coyotes Goal - Carcillo pulls and drags around Dallman and backhands it over Barbs shoulder (4:16).
- Halfway through the period: the Kings are getting some good shots on, but the Coyotes are cycling well and not letting the Kings get too set in their plays. The Kings are getting pushed out of the zone.
- Coyotes Goal - Winnik goes to the net with 3 Kings softly backchecking (12:40). Grr...
- 2nd period = The Kings are back on their heels because the Coyotes are aggressively forechecking, backchecking, getting shots on, uhhh, is there anything else? This is so sloppy!!
- Kings PP - That was terrible.
- I must say, Lauri Tukonen has been completely invisible. Boyle anyone? Perhaps some Moulson? I'd even take Harrold!
- Kings PP - Uhh...
- I'm kind of embarrassed....the Kings have 17 giveaways to the Yotes 8. And of course, we have less shots on.

3rd Period:
- Nothing impressive in the first 10 minutes until the fight between Ivanans and Carcillo. I was unaware that Carcillo was only 5'9". I'm giving this one to Raitis, obviously.
- This is where the Kings decide to pick up their pace and aggressiveness. Sully and Brownie get a short-handed opportunity; Sully is tripped up (slew-footed) and Brownie is slashed but only one that is called is the one for Sully. Brownie is pissed and starts throwing his body around where ever he has an open shot.
- At 17:48 Army and Carcillo get 10-minute misconducts and leave for the locker room.
- Kings PP - Can they break the shut out?.......... Negative.

Game:
- Kings 0, Coyotes 4 (0 for 6 against the Coyotes. Amazing.)
- Shots: Kings 34, Yotes 29 (3rd period: 17, 5. Can we say trying to make up for not showing up for the first 40 minutes??)

Read more...

Loyal To The Day I Die

Sunday, February 17, 2008

to ROB BLAKE

Great hair, Blakey.

If this isn't an indicator that Blake wants to remain in LA, I don't know what is.

L.A. Times Story

Inside The Kings interview

Obviously this doesn't mean that he wouldn't waive his no-trade clause if he was asked, because he hasn't been asked...yet. There are 9 days left, and really, the Kings should be more focused on getting the dead weight of their roster (i.e. Nagy) than Blake, because of those two, Blake has actually been playing AND putting up numbers.

(Getty Images/Jeff Vinnick)Just because I think this picture is hilarious.

Read more...

On The Road Again - Clouts In Net (For 2 Periods)

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Pre-game:
- Is there anyone out there watching the Kings at the Jobbing Dot Com arena?
- Dan Cloutier is in net as so is Bryz.
- I will update after each period.

1st Period:
- Cammy's back in the line up and Dallman is suited up again; Willsie and Thornton are scratched. Gretzky's hair is looking very Hollywood and it's got some nice flow to it.
- The Kings gets some opportunities and close calls against Bryz but so do the Coyotes against Clouts. For some reason I'm not too nervous for this game. Maybe I shouldn't underestimate the Coyotes.
- Ivanans gets a hooking penalty and the Kings are on the PK. Sully is applying some good pressure out on the point man. Coyotes Goal - Jovanovski scored through traffic at 5:50 and Crawford is beyond pissed.
- The top line gets a big rush to the net. I really like this line's lateral passes coming across the blue line. Although it's only when Sully doesn't pass it back to the blue line when no one is there. Why do you do that so much, Sully? You gotta be selfish sometimes.
- Kings Goal - JJ keeps the puck in the zone at the blueline, Purcell picks it up and cycles it in deeper, Ivanans (3) then picks it up and tosses it at the net with Boyle providing a screen at 8:30. DAMN.
- I really don't like Clouts' helmet...especially because it's just a solid color.
- Coyotes Goal - Perrault snaps a high shot off from a severe angle after getting the puck with no men on at 15:29. Clouts was caught off balance and the Coyotes are up 2-1.
- JJ is getting really good at getting a player who enters his zone off the puck; I like that he's not being as passive as he has been.

2nd Period:
- The first 2 minutes of this period the Kings are keeping the puck in the offensive zone and they already have 4 shots on net, which is a good sign of the Kings coming out fast early.
- The Coyotes are definitely more physical on the Kings top line than on their other lines.
- Boyle makes a good hit behind Bryz about 5 minutes in; I like that he not only uses his size but that he also has soft hands on the puck. This is his 8th NHL game and he has 4 goals and 1 assist. Beastly.
- Coyotes Goal - ..by Brad Stuart (Winnik) at 6:44. That definitely wouldn't have gone in, but I'm not gonna knock Stuart's effort on trying to get back to help out Clouts.
- There is a mad, mad scramble after JJ takes a bomb toward the net. Boyle is in front of the net trying to get a rebound and he's taken to the ice by falling over Bryz. Ballard and Boyle both are off for 2 minutes and it's a 4-on-4. Stressful moment = A Coyote takes a shot on from inside the blueline, Clouts stops it but can't find it!!! My god, if that went in.....
- Kings PP - After one minute, Kopi takes a hooking penalty and it's 4-on-4. They can't clear it and the Coyotes are up for one minute.
- Kings PK - Bench minor against the Kings at 14:21. Crap. Ok, that was just about the funniest PK I've ever seen. Stuart's stick gets caught up in Clouts' equipment somehow and Clouts is just looking ridiculous with a stick coming out of his padding. Stuart tries to grab at it, but is unsuccessful until the 3rd try. Jim Fox says that if he had made a save, it would probably have been a stick save. HILARIOUS.
- Kings PP - Weak. Period is over and the Kings have won only 14 faceoffs compared to the Coyotes 24. Bleh.
- Carcillo receives an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty after the horn blows.

3rd Period:
- Barbs is in net for this last period...and apparently Clouts isn't on the bench.
- Kings PP - Kings Goal - Cammy passes the puck to Stuart who shots it toward the net, and Brownie (26) redirects it past Bryz 37 seconds in.
- Brownie upends a Coyote and his skate blade hits Boyle's visor dead on...oh my god. If he wasn't wearing that visor...
- Kings PP - I like seeing Purcell getting some specialty team minutes. He got some time on the 4-on-4 early and he's out there now. Boyle and Ballard are going at it with their bodies and their mouths. (Side note: Boyle's hair is very late 90s.)
-13 minutes left and the pace is getting faster and more scrappy.
- Kings Goal - Fro (16) gets the goal after a long shot from Stuart at 8:38. Fro's got 12 points in the last 7 games. QUITE BEASTLY.
- Kings PK - AND then Modry takes a penalty and it's a 2-man advantage for one minute for the Coyotes. JJ is hurt by a blast by Mueller and he can't get off the ice. The Kings can't clear the puck and Barbs can't grab it out of the air. This is ridiculous. Stuart doesn't have his stick now!! Coyotes Goal - Vrbata at 12:54. That just fucking sucked. The Kings were exhausted and couldn't get the puck out of their zone. How frustrating. Coyotes are up by one, 4-3.
- 6 minutes left and JJ is going to the dressing room. 3:25 left and JJ is back! Whew!
- The Yotes have 16 shots on while the Kings only have 6. What the hell.
- 1 minute left and they pull Barbs. The Coyotes are controlling the neutral zone and the Kings can't get in the zone to set anything up.

Game:
- Kings 3, Coyotes 4
- That was frustrating; Jim Fox said it best when he said that "the effort was there."

Read more...

A Night Of Firsts!!!!

Friday, February 15, 2008

The Kings played the Calgary Flames and came out the victors 6-3. I was hoping that they'd bring the momentum from the great 8-game roadtrip to Staples, and they did not disappoint. They came out fast and caught Kiprusoff with his hands down his pants.

Yeah Giuliano!!! He needs more love.


So this was definitely a night of firsts:

1) Brian Boyle makes his Staples Center debut and does not disappoint by getting a goal!!

2) KEVIN DALLMAN nets his first goal of the year!! Whoda thunk?!?! (He also got almost 17 minutes of ice time!!!)

(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Love their faces.

3) Teddy Purcell gets his first NHL goal!!!

4) Jeff Giuliano was awarded a penalty shot. Has he ever had one before??

video

5) First time seeing the Flames #3 since signing his new 6-year, 6.5 million dollar contract. I would DEFINITELY NOT pay him $6.5 mil per year, but that's just me.



6) Kings take the last game of this series against the Flames with an in-your-face type of win.

Have we EVER had more shots on net??

Read more...

"I'm Not A Puck Bunny" Podcast - Episode 2

Thursday, February 14, 2008

This is Episode 2 of our podcast.

Finny and I are joined by KMS2 of Purple Crushed Velvet for a special guest appearance.

We review the rest of the roadtrip that the Kings and Ducks were on as well as look toward the games for the next week. We then talk a bit on the big stories around the league and well as look at the trades and trade rumors circling about. We finally cap it off with another segment of Off Ice: Sweetheart Edition.

Read more...

Roadtrip Game 8 - Kings 2, Blues 4

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Pre-Game:
- The Kings have been doing really well this road trip, but I can't wait for them to get back to Staples. I'm wondering if Blake and Nagy will be re-activated off the IR before Friday's game in time for the trade considerations. I will be shocked if Nagy isn't moved by the deadline. He hasn't given us anything recently. Yeah, he got a hat trick in the New Year's Day game, but honestly, what has he done lately?
- The Blues...the Blues...I dunno. Let's drop the puck!

1st Period:
- Kopi gets a breakaway right off the faceoff and draws a penalty. Kings PP - Boyle shoots the puck between his legs trying to fool Legace. This kid's got some moves that you don't think he'd bust out and I'm pleasantly surprised. Ratti and King drop the gloves and after some slugs here and there, Ivanans just muscles him to the ice.
- Kings PK - The Blues are ranked 30th in the league on PP. I can see why; their entry into the offensive zone is pretty sloppy and they can't finish their passes.
- Kings PP @ 11:14 - Hmm, Cammy on the point. I'm not sure how I feel about this. Some shots on net and we move along.
- Kings Goal - Fro is on fire! Sully backhands the puck to the net from the right circle, Frolov (15) (at the left circle) reaches around the defender for the rebound and shoots it past Legace at 13:19.
- Kings PP - They have a sweet entry into the zone, but that's all that was cool about it.
- Kings PK - Dallman can't do his job and takes a penalty. There's a rush to the net and all the players start to scrap and Barbs' body is along the goal line. It's deemed no goal. Ahh Barbs, what a stud! He's made solid saves and I'm not too nervous for the next 20 minutes.

(AP)
Well...at least Kopi still rocks...

2nd Period:
- Blues Goal - The puck takes a funny bounce up high and goes in behind Barbs 33 seconds in. This reminds me of what happened to Loungo a couple of days ago where the puck just flopped high up over his head and it ended in a goal. Pretty crappy, but a goal's a goal, right? Hmmm, why the hell did McDonald get the goal? If he touched it, then goal would have been waived!
- Sully and Fro get a rush but Legace makes the save and freezes the puck. Could have been 2-1?
- Kings PP - Moulson gets the blade of his stick snapped off and they get a man advantage. Uhh...boring PP.
- Kings Goal - Kings enter the zone and Kopi takes the loooong way around the back of the net. Legace is caught out of position, Moulson and Brownie get in the open crease, Brownie gets a pass from Kopi and pushes it in the net at 4:07.
- Kings PK - Uhh, uneventful. Why does it seem like we're either on the PP or the PK at all times.
- Blues Goal - A big pass out of their zone, a shot on and Rucinsky gets the rebound at 9:01 after the first shot hits the post. We're tied 2-2.
- The play is opening up and both teams are getting chances on net and the puck is all over the ice. The Blues are getting some chances for some big garbage goals but they're not taking advantage.
- Kings PP - 0 for 5

3rd Period:
- Kings PP - The Kings only have 7 shots on going into this power play. So...let's stop passing so much and get the puck to the net, okay? ...0 for 6.
- The pace has slowed down and...I'm a little bored actually... I know these guys realize that they're tied with a little more than half the period to go. I'm hoping that it doesn't stay like this just so both teams can secure a point.
- Blues Goal - Bitches!! JJ gets a penalty right after the goal and...wait, what?? A 10-minute misconduct?? (8:29)
- Kings PP - 0 for 8
- Blues Goal - Bullshit. Blues up 4-2 (13:25).
- I can't believe the Kings are down. There are less than 5 minutes left and the Kings are doing a good job with keeping the puck in the Blues' zone, but the Blues are all collapsing down low and the Kings can't get a good shot on. I honestly can't believe we're losing. Is it because I'm tired?

Game:
- What the hell just happened...

- Kings 2, Blues 4
- Just to reiterate how much I hate Handzus in the face off circle, he won 4 and lost 13. What the shit is that???
- Wow, Ivanans only got 2:10 on the ice.

Read more...

Viva Las Vegas

Sunday, February 10, 2008

So I spent this weekend in Vegas with non-hockey loving friends. It was definitely good to get away, and KMS2 was a dear pal and blogged the games for me this weekend. =) So props to her for getting up that early on Saturday and watching a lame game!

A BIG THANKS to all of you who texted me hockey updates throughout the weekend. They were definitely needed and much appreciated!!

I, too, woke up early with Kings fans and found the Sports Book area in the hotel/casino I was staying at and watched the game amongst all of the guys who were betting on horse racing and college basketball. They definitely showed the game on the bottom tv in the corner, out of sight of the normal line of vision of most people. But I took up the chair in front of it and proceeded to watch the Pens beat my Kings. Lame! I can't believe I woke up early for that! Argh. And what's even MORE LAME is that I left with 5 minutes to go and freaking Brian Boyle scored with less than 2 minutes to go! Serves me right for leaving early. But whatever, maybe if the Kings weren't losing I'd have stayed.

Anyway, I just wanted to say a quick thanks to everyone and that I'm kind of over Vegas with all it's smoking indoors and walking around for days. BUT, I shall be in full attendance for Frozen Fury XI!!

Updates:

02/10 - My thoughts are with Richard Zednik and his family. My god...that was unreal.

02/11 - So...the Flyers' Braydon Coburn is out with a torn artery...IN HIS LEFT BUTTOCK. What makes this even better is that he doesn't know how it happened.

02/12 - Thanks, Netflix!

Last of the Mohicans? Sounds like something I might enjoy!

Read more...

Essay Contest on HBIC

Friday, February 8, 2008

So many, if not all, of you may not know that I entered into Teebz's essay contest that celebrated his one-year anniversary of his blog, Hockey Blog In Canada. I ended up winning and sharing the prizes with the other winner. Go us! When I receive those in the mail, I shall share with everyone that awesome swag I won!


Here are the prompts for the essay contest; there were three to choose from. I chose the first question:

1. We've seen the long-term contracts handed out to players such as Rick DiPietro (NYI), Mike Richards (PHI), and Alexander Ovechkin (WAS). With the influx of young talent in the league and the limits placed on rookie contracts, there will be opportunities for other long-term contracts to be awarded to deserving players.

(a)If you're a general manager for a hockey team, are long-term contracts good for hockey, and specifically your team? What benefits and/or risks are associated with a long-term contract for your team, and would you sign a young player to a decade-long contract or longer?

(b)Putting yourself into the shoes of a general manager can be tough. Can you justify why you would OR would not re-sign one of the following restricted free agents listed below to a long-term contract if you were the GM of that team? How long would his next contract be, based on your decision regarding long-term contracts, and what dollar amount would you consider a fair market value for the type of player he is? Please consider such variables as injuries, statistics, relationship to the fans and media, and marketability for your team.


- Dion Phaneuf (Calgary Flames)
- Marc-Andre Fleury (Pittsburgh Penguins)
- Corey Perry (Anaheim Ducks)
- Brad Boyes (St. Louis Blues)


So here is my essay in its entirety. I turned it in on January 30, 2008, so the stats will be a little outdated. If you decide not to read the whole thing, the most important paragraph for all you Kings fans is the second to last paragraph because I...discuss Nagy.

(AP)

WORTH THEIR WEIGHT IN COLD HARD CASH

Signing hockey players for long-term contracts is an extremely involved decision-making process that carries with it a high risk factor for all parties. It is a process that originates from the front office, moves to the individual player, and ends with the announcement to the league and fans. It involves the whole of any franchise and sets in motion the plan of the respective General Manager. This announcement is also used as a statement to the rest of the National Hockey League that is loud and clear, which is that a team's franchise is making a long-term financial investment in a specific player who will be a cornerstone from which to build. But since the lockout that wiped out the entire 04-05 season and the implementation of a league-wide salary cap, GMs are now forced to fight for players on their rosters using their wallets. With the 07-08 season more than halfway gone, we have already seen a few deals that have exceeded the 10-year mark. But long-term salaries do not work for all situations, which is the case for the majority of professional hockey players, including Pittsburgh Penguins’ netminder Marc-Andre Fleury.

Signing any professional athlete carries with it an inherent risk, and the decision to sign NHL goaltenders could arguably involve a higher risk of investment due to the fact that they are more susceptible to injury than other NHL players. In the summer of 2006, Fleury signed a $2.5 million, 2-year deal and is currently on the injured reserve with a high ankle sprain. In 21 games played this season he has 9 wins, 8 losses, and 1 overtime loss with a 2.90 GAA and a .902 save percentage. Since he is a young, developing goaltender he was not and is not considered the benchmark player for the Penguins; Fleury is living in the shadow of Sidney Crosby’s hype and Evgeni Malkin’s performance this year. At the same time, Fleury is only twenty-three years of age and goaltenders, as a whole, need a longer period of time to adjust and mature. No where this is more evident than in the performance of the Penguins’ current top netminder Ty Conklin who was recalled on December 7, 2007, and now boasts a record of 11-2-2, with a 1.97 GAA, and a .940 save percentage.

Conklin has been extremely impressive in his play at 31 years of age. The surge of his play stems from having another opportunity to showcase himself in the NHL. As a result, his $500,000, 1-year contract signed in July 2007 is inadequate for the effort the Penguins have been getting, which almost the entire hockey nation would have not been able to foresee. Yet Conklin has exploded onto the NHL scene after a stint in the minors and has garnered surprise from fans who knew him back when. During the 06-07 season he played for three different teams and accumulated losing streaks on all three rosters. But due to his newly found play this season he has also created a new fan base, which carries with it high regard from within the organization. Since he signed a contract for only one-year, it would be in the Penguins’ best interest to lock him up for a couple of years. I would sign Conklin to no more than three years based on his past performances, which had shown him to be shaky and inconsistent at best. In looking at Conklin’s situation it does not bode poorly for Fleury. The former just reiterates the point that analysts should not always discount the underdog. This being said, I would not sign Fleury for more than 5 years and no more than $3 million per season. This will give the Penguins a chance to see how his injuries inhibit his growth, if at all, while not taking a large financial risk. This will also carry Fleury to restricted free agency where the Penguins could then extend another offer based on the previous five years.

This is not to say that all goaltenders should refrain from signing big-deal contracts. New York Islanders’ Rick DiPietro went that exact route, which brought up arguments of whether he truly deserved his 15-year, $67.5 million contract before proving his worth in the NHL. While it is true that once a prospect is chosen first overall in a draft, much is expected, and I believe this truth still holds but at not such an accelerated rate for goalies. There is no better example from this 07-08 season than Chicago Blackhawks’ Patrick Kane. He went into the 2007 NHL Draft as the touted prospect and has made an immediate impact on the Blackhawks on the ice in terms of presence and point production. He currently leads all rookies in points with 12-33=45. Time can only tell of what his true potential will be as he matures both on and off the ice.

In returning to DiPietro, it must be stated that he was chosen to be the face of the Islanders, which is evident when you look at their current roster. This season he has a 19-18-6, 2.61 GAA, and a .910 save percentage. Last season (06-07) he collected 32 wins, 19 losses, and 9 OT losses, with 2.58 GAA, and a .919 save percentage. Even though he is projecting to have more losses this season, his GAA and save percentage look steady. I believe that signing DiPietro was an intelligent move for the Islander management team. He is the most marketable of the Islanders on an NHL-wide level, which is important because this is still a business. And as crude as it sounds, good business equals revenue. The difference with Fleury is that he was not asked to fill that position for the Penguins; that’s Sid the Kid’s role. In that regard, confidence should be instilled in Fleury’s play between the pipes because he is not playing under that microscope. I would not doubt his ability to flourish in the upcoming years, which is why he shouldn’t be signed to earn a large salary. DiPietro signed his contract and now carries his team; at the same time, it is important to note that he is also three years older than Fleury. So the best thing to do for Fleury is to bring him around in a timely manner while still expecting the kinds of results the number one overall pick in 2003 should be displaying on a nightly basis.

During the 05-06 season, Fleury played 50 games going 13-27-6, with a 3.25 GAA, and a .898 save percentage. But the season prior (04-05) while with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the AHL, he posted a 26-19-4, 2.52 GAA, and a .901 save percentage. Jump to last season (06-07) with the big club, he improved with 40 wins, 16 losses, and 9 OT contests. His GAA dropped a touch at 2.83 but his save percentage improved to .906. It would not be a stretch to say that if he was not currently injured that his stats would be trending upward on the positive side. At the same time, his injury brought about a newly revived Conklin, so this is not a complete loss for the Penguins as an organization.

Another function of long-term contracts is that they set the bar higher for current prospects. The salary not being the goal to strive for, but the level of play that has earned the contract. Washington Capitals’ Alexander Ovechkin is a stellar athlete and has immense character and personality off the ice. He is a complete package and well worth the 13-year, $124 million contract extension to his club. He currently leads the NHL in goals with 39 with 26 assists for 65 total points. I am positive that there are prospects in the minors and juniors who strive to be like Ovechkin and who are working hard everyday to achieve what he has in his short time in the NHL. These kinds of contracts also raise the bar for the player because he must subsequently prove to his club’s management of why he should be earning that dollar amount per year. No one wants to be perceived as a bust by league analysts, and at the same time, the quality of the player both on and off the ice ideally should not be under constant stress or strain regarding his on-ice performance.

I do not believe Fleury has displayed enough talent to garner this type of salary, but that does not mean he should be left by the wayside to nurse his injury. Fleury should be signed to a 5-year contract, which will allow him to grow and develop in a stable environment. After hearing about these 13- and 15-year deals, a 5-year deal does not sound like too long of a time commitment in the grand scheme of things. Some could question if five years were enough when looking at Crosby and his 5-year, $43.5 million contract. He is not only the face of the Penguins, but of the NHL as well; so some could justifiably ask if this were enough. Others also could argue that the legend of Sid the Kid started while he was still in the womb as opposed to while in his third year in the NHL. There is no question in my mind that Crobsy will earn every cent that his contract is worth both on the ice as a player and off the ice as a spokesman for the game. Fleury does not have this grandness preceding his presence in a game, but this does not mean he cannot perform as the number one goalie that he was named to be.

Even though five-year contracts are substantially shorter than 10- or 15-year deals, they still carry a risk; we can look to Edmonton Oilers’ Dustin Penner as an example, formally of the Anaheim Ducks. He agreed to a 5-year, $21.25 million contract to play for the Oilers starting in the 07-08 season. As a player whose first full NHL season garnered him a Stanley Cup ring, his numbers were acceptable for a rookie and went 3-5=8 in the post season. But Edmonton Oilers GM Kevin Lowe extended an offer sheet that the Anaheim Ducks' GM Brian Burke would not match, which caused a public spat in the NHL media. Not only did this exposure cast a less than favorable light on the dispute, it also placed Penner at the center of the feud. When he relocated from southern California to western Canada and did not immediately make an impact on the struggling Oilers, he was seen as another overpaid player and a disappointment. In looking at Penner's numbers this year, 15-17=32 in 53 games, one can hardly say that he's earned his paycheck, but it is very early in his professional career, so it is difficult from an analytical perspective to gauge with 100% certainty that he is a complete bust. From the perspective of a GM, it is a reality that he has not panned out as a player earning $4.25 million this year. I personally believe he did not earn his $2.125 million for the first 41 games this season, but he will keep developing his play and skill level and will eventually be a force to reckon with once everything comes together for him. Until then he should be feeling a twinge of guilt every time his bank account grows.

The topic for this piece was looking at the reasons why Marc-Andre Fleury should or should not receive a long-term contract, but I want to restate the fact that any contract carries its risks, even one-year deals. The most blatant example being Ladislav Nagy, formerly of the Phoenix Coyotes for four and a half seasons and of the Dallas Stars for 25 games. He signed a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Kings as an unrestricted free agent for the 07-08 season. The 02-03 season with the Coyotes is where he tallied the most points, 22-35=57 in 80 games. But there has been a steady decline in his numbers since that season, as well as a fluctuation of which team’s jersey he has worn, and his point production has dropped off severely this season. In 38 games he has netted 9 goals and 17 assists for 26 points. Some of these games have been missed due to injury, but that number is rivaled by how many times he has been a health scratch. Nagy has shown modest glimpses of hope in his play, but for the most part he has been a disappointment to the Kings, NHL analysts, and Kings fans. What is unfortunate for the Kings organization is that Nagy’s poor stats and having a $3.75 million contract are not attractive for other GMs around the league. No team’s management anticipates this for a signing, and the Penguins would certainly not want that for Fleury.

While Nagy is evidence that there is risk in any length of a contract, Fleury is still worth a 5-year deal with a maximum of $3 million per year. There is always the option of bonuses that he could potentially gain that are dependent solely on his performance as opposed to his name. I believe that Fleury could become one of these cornerstone names that people think of when they hear about the Pittsburgh Penguins. Granted the first couple of names will Crobsy and Malkin for the next half-decade, but maybe Fleury’s name could slip into the top three in the next year or two.

Read more...

Roadtrip Game 5 - Kings 5, Red Wings 3 (PT)

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Pregame and Player Transactions:
- JS Aubin was waived and cleared to Manchester
- Dan Cloutier was placed on re-entry waivers and was cleared
- Rob Blake has been placed on IR
- Dustin Brown and his wife have a new baby boy, Jake. He will be back with the Kings when they play Pittsburgh on Saturday.

1st Period:
- Detroit Goal - Would you have it any other way? Samuelsson takes a shot at Barbs and he stops it but it trickles through his legs and Kopecky pushes it across the line 49 seconds in.
- Kings PP - Boyle is taking advantage of his special team minutes. The rest of time is uneventful.
- Kings PP - Holmstrom gets 2 for unsportsmanlike. The Wings are being really chippy on this kill for them and it really didn't look like a PP for the Kings.
- Halfway through the period and the Red Wings are definitely setting the pace of this game and I just hope the Kings can keep up for the full 60 minutes.
- Kings Goal - Kyle Calder (7) gets the puck past Osgood at 10:17 who thought he had it completely covered.
- Harrold got hit hard by a wing; that one looked like it hurt. There's a little scrap after the whistle from that hit and Harrold is recovering on the bench. This basically pisses Ratti off for the rest of the game.
- Kings PK - Stuart gets called for interference. Giuliano loses his stick and then JJ breaks his stick and the fans are going nuts! But they were able to get it out and the Kings quickly recover and kill the rest of the penalty. Barbs ends the PK with a solid save.
- Oh man, there's DAN CLOUTIER sitting on the bench chewing his bubble gum.

Is that a gigantic scar on his face or is the glass just dirty.

- 3 minutes left Cleary shoots and Barbs' stick shatters into three pieces and Calder gives him his stick!! The Kings do a good job in keeping the puck more in the neutral zone and the Red Wings' zone. But he makes a solid save and the play is whilsted down.
- Detroit Goal - Zetterburg scores on the short side on Barbs at 18:51. This goal was lame.
- Kings 1, Detroit 2: shots 9 to 12

(Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
Look at that big-ass rookie

2nd Period
- Kings PK - Two minutes in Ratti takes a crappy holding penalty. Nice kill though.
- The Kings are keeping up the pace and they aren't allowing the Red Wings to completely dominate the game as they could.
- Kings PP - Kopi straight gets tripped up and the Red Wings aren't letting the Kings get down low with the puck. Eh, the Wings predictably kill it.
- Detroit Goal - Zetterburg takes the puck completely around the whole net and Barbs can't get to the opposite post fast enough (13:05).
- The Kings can't get the fucking puck out of the fucking zone. Get your heads on straight! Get the puck out of your zone!!!
- Minute to go, the Kings get stripped of the puck and instead of taking a straight shot on Barbs on a 3-on-1, the Wings pull a Kings move and pass about 3 times and they lose their opportunity.
- Kings 1, Detroit 3; The Kings aren't letting Detroit get too many shots on goal, but Detroit is still controlling the flow of the game.

(Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
Osgood was seeing a lot of this

3rd Period:
- Kings Goal
- Sully (13) goes far, far side top shelf and it's an early goal 39 seconds in. That was a sexy goal.
- Ratti - HIT!!
- Kings PP - Kings Goal - Fro (14) gets a cross-ice pass from Calder with Army screening at 6:15. Game is tied!
- The game is a lot more wide open after this goal than in the first two periods. The Kings are taking back some of the neutral zone that the Wings were dominating earlier.
- Man, these line combinations are all over the place; Moulson, Boyle, and Cammy right now.
- Kings PP - Calder seems to be getting under the skin of his former teammates, which leads to a penalty against Lebda.
- Kings Goal - Stuart (5) takes a long bomb from the blue line and it gets past Osgood. This is the 3rd unanswered goal for the Kings at 13:07.
- Kings Goal - Kopi (22) gets the backhand in the low, low slot and it gets it behind Osgood!! Make that 4 unanswered goals at 14:39. I honestly can't believe the Kings have scored 4 goals in this period. Unbelievable. I guess miracles really do happen.
- Kings PK - Detroit pulls Osgood and they're on a 6-on-4 til the end of the game. The buzzer goes and I think I just peed my pants.

Game:
- Kings 5, Detroit 3
- I am officially recanting my comment about putting Cloutier in net since we were gonna lose anyway.
- This was an amazing end to this game. This third period was the best hockey that I've seen the Kings play even in the games where they've won. Even when Detroit got desperate at the end of the game, the Kings maintained their control in their zone. I'm in disbelief. But what is going to annoy me is that news articles tomorrow are gonna say how the lowly Kings beat the Wings. Stop calling us "lowly" and "the worst." I think this roadtrip has shown what they can put together.
- Yes, we're still last in the standings, but we just schooled the Detroit Red Wings.
- Another 2 points!!

Read more...

"I'm Not A Puck Bunny" Podcast - Episode 1

Finny from Girl With a Puck and I have started a podcasting venture. It is an experiment to see if a Kings fan and Ducks fan can interact with civility. Is it possible? Maybe. Will it be possible when joined by a Sharks fan? Questionable, that's where it might get a little dicey. It will definitely be interesting on my part since I know next to nothing about either the Sharks or Ducks seeing as how they're my most hated teams. Just hearing either name makes my skin crawl. It will definitely be an interesting journey.

For this first episode we take a look at how the Kings and Ducks have been doing on their respective roadtrips out on the east coast, I give my input on Finny and McPhizzle's choices of NHL hotties, and we top it off with a fun little segment called Off Ice: High School Edition.

We've titled the podcast:

I'm Not a Puck Bunny Podcast
Because Fan Girls Do It Better


It's just a start so any feedback is welcome. Enjoy!!

Click me to go to the audio

Read more...

Breaking News - Player Transactions

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Kings waive Aubin and Cloutier was put on re-entry waivers

This is a tragic day for all Kings fans. Nothing more tragic could have happened in the realm of player transactions. Nothing. Aubin was shipped off to greener pastures and Cloutier will be in a Kings sweater once again.

Has DL just completely tossed the rest of the season ensuring us the best chance at Stamkos? If so, consider me tossing my cookies.

Yet history has shown that this could not be too far from the truth. Pittsburgh, in wanting to draft Lemeiux, proceeded to stopping winning their games in order to get this player who they so coveted. This translated into Cups for the Penguins in ‘91 and ’92. It wasn’t until later that the draft lottery was introduced to prevent teams from doing what the Penguins did. Even so, the team in last place STILL has the best chance at getting the first pick. Stamkos anyone?

Perhaps a trade that is made in the next two weeks will bring in a higher 1st round pick and we could get Luke Schenn. I’m SURE DL saw the chemistry between Hickey and Schenn at the WJC. They were paired up and read each other well; Schenn’s size and Hickey’s awesomeness were obvious.

But really, I just want us to stop sucking and having other teams and their fans seeing us suck. Fortunately, the Kings are on a great roadtrip (well, who knows what Detroit will bring tomorrow) and I’m not sure how bringing in Cloutier will help the Kings. At Manchester they are currently tango-ing with three netminders: Dan Taylor, Erik Ersberg, and Cloutier. With Cloutier healthy and back in the rotation, this causes one of the younger goalies to not get as much time on the ice as he could/should. Aubin is currently providing jack squat for this squad and, I will admit, that he would probably be better served elsewhere. What could make this more typical of the Kings is if some team picks up Aubin and he starts to play well.

Will Cloutier get us a better shot at Tavares? 2009? My word, that’s so far away. Is this what DL’s thinking? Give Cloutier some minutes, solidify our picks (Stamkos, Schenn/Doughty), AND give us a glimmer of light for the 2009 draft? How long is this rebuild?

Since Cloutier is signed through the end of NEXT season, will he stay on while Bernier develops at Manchester? Will one season be enough to instill Bernier with confidence in himself? (I actually think that question is a no-brainer. Scratch that.) Again, will having Cloutier here better our chances for Tavares?

Sidenote, but not off-topic: The Kings should just start Cloutier in net against the Red Wings, because, really, we aren’t gonna win anyway.

Read more...

Roadtrip Game 4 - Kings 4, Rangers 2 (PT)

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Pre-Game and Player Transactions:
- The Kings haven't been at MSG in 5 years where they won 6-2 against the Rangers.
- Cammy has been activated from IR
- Brownie is out for the birth of his first child. Congrats to him and Nicole!

1st Period:
- Thornton is on the first line?? Cammy is on the second and Moulson was moved to the 3rd creating an all-Manchester line. Willsie is a scratch. Purcell anyone?
- First 5 minutes of the period: the Kings are spending more time in the Rangers zone, which is a rarity and Kopi is again showing off his mad skills.
- Kings PP - Boyle is getting time on the PP but the Rangers are doing a good job trapping the Kings out in the first minute. Avery hooks Fro and is in the box. I think Calder should summon the aura of Holmstrom in his screening skills; he needs to get his rear a little closer to the top of the crease. I'm sure there are a couple more inches there that he could gain.
- Halfway through the period: the Kings have 10 shots on and the Rangers have only 1.
- Kings Goal - I guess I shouldn't doubt Thornton (5) (at 10:10).
- Kings Goal - Brian Boyle (2) gets a pass from Moulson who was mucking it out in the right corner with Giuliano and two Rangers. That was a great cross-ice pass from Moulson over to the big boy at 13:08.
- Avery and Stuart give it the ole staredown in front of Barbs. These are two guys that look like they're enjoying themselves when they're actually pissed. They have these sneers that would make you think they're actually the best of friends.

(Jim McIssac/Getty Images)
Can you believe People Magazine picked this guy as one of its sexiest men? Vomit-inducing? You betcha.

- Kings PP - What a bore. This game needs to pick up the pace already.
- This Manchester line is making some great plays happen. They're throwing their bodies and making the Rangers skate on their heels.
- Rangers Goal - They're able to get something set up in the Kings zone and a shot from the point is translated into a save from Barbs but Drury (17) grabs it up and gets it past Barbs at 17:50.
- Last couple minutes of the period: the Rangers decide they want to start throw their bodies around.
- Shots on goal Kings 16, Rangers 5. Good job, guys.

2nd Period:
- Kings PP - Rangers kill this off uneventfully and true to Kings form, the Rangers are able to start aggressively setting up plays and getting the puck right to Barbs. I feel like sometimes the Kings aren't as aggressive as they should be when the time on a PP runs out.
- Kings PK - After a short-handed break with Kopi and Sully, the Rangers move back quickly and get some crazy shots on around Barbs. Barbs is definitely making key saves through the rush.
- Cammy, Cammy, Cammy, move your little legs faster!
- Kings Goal - A defensive breakdown from the Rangers allows three Kings forwards to rush down low to the net. Frolov (13) gets the puck last from the passing frenzy and the Kings are up 3-1 at 9:18.
- YES!!! Ivanans is eyeing Avery. DO IT RATTI. Just slug him right between the eyes.
- Kings PK - Barbs gets an interference call and the Rangers get their second PP. Handzus ALMOST got another shorthanded break. I'm getting more and more impressed with Stuart's play. He's making a difference as opposed to making mistakes. And I like the fact that he's standing up for Barbs, FINALLY. Speaking of Barbs, he's getting square on ALL of the shots and he's looking great in net.
- Lundqvist is getting a workout tonight and Cammy ALMOST gets his first goal in....I can't even remember what he looks like when he's scoring.
- Rangers Goal - Freaking Avery. There are 4 Kings and 3 Rangers down low and it's a scramble to get the puck in the net at 17:26.
- The Rangers are back in this game and they're putting the pressure on in the second half of this period. The Rangers have also brought their shot total past the Kings 30-26.
- It just may be Stuart and Avery going at it instead of Ratti and Avery.

3rd Period:
- Kings Goal - Fro is being his usual forechecking beastly-self and passes the biscuit over to Kopi (21) in the high slot at 1:21. If Frolov doesn't get a star tonight, I'll be pissed.
***Update: Frolov got the 3rd Star, Kopi got the 2nd, and Barbs got the well-deserved 1st Star of the night!***
- 5 minutes gone and the tone of the game is more chippy than when it first started. Barbs has faced 34 total shots with 11 minutes gone in the period.
- Kings PP - Boyle was out there to win the face off and then immediately went to the bench. I'm SO GLAD that there's someone that can win faceoffs. Handzus? I think not. Paul Mara gets knocked on his ass by Stuart and it wasn't the best kill, but they got it done.
- Kings PP - I spy Cammy on this first shift back with Kopi and Sully.
- The Rangers pull Lundqvist with about 40 seconds to go and they get more aggressive in the Kings zone. Shot after close call after scramble in and around the net and I start to celebrate with 4 seconds to go.
- Shots on goal: Kings 31, Rangers 41. Would you have it any other way?

Game:
- Kings 4, Rangers 2
- Another two points and I hope the boys over at The 2 Man Advantage enjoyed themselves at MSG.
- The Kings are continuing their momentum through this roadtrip and, besides the game against the Devils, they're looking good and working well together. There are a lot of injuries and such preventing this team to function with the roster it started the season with. But, quite frankly, that's a great thing. I'm loving the new guys who are coming in and making differences immediately.

Read more...

  © Blogger template Cumulus by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP