Thursday, March 27, 2008

Thursday Roundup/Gamenight: Caps @ Bolts

[AP Preview - WashingtonCaps.com Preview]

Welcome to Tampa Basement, where the Bolts are doing everything in their power to up their odds of winning the draft lottery, most recently scratching goalie-of-the-future Mike Smith due to a very minor "sprained left ankle" and recalling Marc Denis (he of the 1-5 record, the 4.05 GAA and the .853 save percentage) on an emergency basis - the emergency being that Tampa was in danger of ending up with more points than Los Angeles, Atlanta and possibly St. Louis.

This, my friends, is called "Pulling a Yeats" - look out below.

But even Matt Yeats won a game back in 2003-04 (against the Pens, no less, thanks in large part to a pair of goals from Trent Whitfield... seriously), a reminder that games are played not on paper but on ice, so the Caps had better not look past this one. And to bring things full circle, the second star in that Caps/Pens tilt for the ages was none other than current Lightning pivot Jeff Halpern, who has caught fire since being traded back to the Southeast Division, racking up seven goals and eight assists in 13 games (apparently he didn't get the Yeats memo).

So the plan is simple: take care of business in Hockey Bay (whatever the hell that is), and- well, since the Caps shouldn't look past this one, I won't either.

Two points await in Tampa, boys. Go get 'em.

Elsewhere 'Round the Rinks:

If you thought Alex Ovechkin was going to be a Cap into the 2020s, think again - he's obviously going to go back to play in Mother Russia before then.... Luckily for the Flyers, Simon Gagne has decided that once his team has done the heavy lifting and gotten to the Stanley Cup Finals, he'll declare himself ready to play.... One year ago today we previewed that night's game and you guys added insult to my personal injury and saw that Sid really was thirsty, and two years ago today we looked at anti-left wing bias in the media and peeked into TSN.ca's mailbag. Finally, I hate to desert you guys at a time like this, but I have to head west for the weekend. I'll leave you in KB's capable hands, but it's on you all to keep things lively. Deal?

Daily Awards
  • Hart: Milan Hejduk (2G, including the game-winner, A, +1, 5 SOG)
  • Ross: Mikko Koivu, Milan Hejduk, Peter Forsberg, Peter Stastny (3 points each)
  • Norris: Clay Wilson (G, A, +2, 3 SOG)
  • Vezina: Jonas Hiller (31 saves on 32 shots against in shootout win)
  • Richard: Milan Hejduk (2G)
  • Calder: Jonas Hiller (31 saves on 32 shots against in shootout win)
  • Aiken: Roberto Luongo (L, 5 goals allowed on 23 shots against in 31:31 of work)

26 comments:

Scai said...

The Lightning since the trade deadline are playing way better than their standings' position would suggest. They just ended the Panthers' nine game unbeaten streak and by that effectively eliminated them from the playoffs. By no means will this be an easy two points, like that "pulling a Yeats" wording might lead one to believe.
The Caps almost got surprised by Atlanta last week, let's hope they don't take this opponent lightly.

FAUX RUMORS said...

1) Ovechkin's (and none of the big Russian stars for that matter) are NOT going anywhere. The article confuses a possible new European league with the current Russian set up.
2) ONLY a new confederated European league would have the money to lure the big stars back over the pond. The new Russian league being set up will have a salary cap under 30 mil US, (probably less.) None of the current NHL-ers would make the same money there (even with the tax breaks)
3) Now a true European League (which doesn't currently exist) could rival the NHL but we're a LONG way aways from this.
4) One could revers this story and say the Ovechkin mega contract and the one Malkin is sure to sign next year, will make it LESS likely that Russians will bolt home and make it more likely that more will want to come over to play. Also, if anyone has visited Russia lately can attest, its a 3rd world country. Most Americans take for granted the amazing standard of living we enjoy here compared to almost everywhere else!
5) In the mean time we don't think many are gnashing their teeth that they didn't get to see Alex Yashin's "talent" displayed in the league this year.

hotdog88gt said...

Speaking of former Caps, Brian Muir was in Syracuse last night with the Marlies. Was on ice for the 2d Syracuse goal.

Would be too bad if WSH, BOS, and PHL all had identical records from here on.

Rage said...

Fauxes that was the biggest load of jingoistic garbage I've ever read.

Calling Russia a 3rd world country is NUTS. Have you ever been a third world country? Poor parts of China, India, Africa? There is no comparison.

FAUX RUMORS said...

1) Actually Rage yes, have been. Never to India, but to Africa/Eastern Europe, etc., Your assessment of the post being 'jingoistic' IS garbage.
2) Don't believe that Russia is a 3rd world country? Read/ask folks who have been there. (And not just to the tourist areas) The standard of living is not even on the same planet as that you'd find here. Even the 'poor' sections here (yes have been to those here too!) don't resemble the 'real poor' of the 3rd world (Russia included

b.orr4 said...

As Carl said in Lost before taking a couple to the chest,"I got a bad feeling about this one". And if Denis starts, make that double bad.

Rage said...

Note: I should have known better than to question the judgment of multiple personalities.

Tyler said...

I thought that some of yesterday's commenters were nucking futs, but then I log on today to discover that Faux just dropped 212 words on a joke of a (non-) story.

tj said...

Faux,
The salary cap for a new Russian league is set for $20 mil. So no chance for top stars to go to Russia. The new league will start this fall.

"if anyone has visited Russia lately" So can we assume that you have visited Russia lately? Where you've been?

Tyler said...

TJ, are you actually **inviting** another post from Faux(es)? You realize you're incurring the wrath of the rest of us, right? ;-)

tj said...

tyler,
He won't be back, He's gone to Russia to prove he was there. :-)

NS said...

i believe the proper verbiage is "developing country" now ;)

it better be a Caps blowout tonight. I'm talking 5-1 final.

billy said...

Well done on the "pulling a Yeats" bit, JP. I am in tears here.

kb said...

Mind the trap games...especially in Florida. The Caps have been just awful in the Sunshine State, going a combined 7-12-3 against Tampa and Florida the last three seasons.

(2-1 vs.TB, 1-2 vs.FLA this season.)

grapejoos said...

I haven't visited Russia lately, but I was in St. Petersburg a little over 10 years ago. I wouldn't call it third world in my experience, but I would say that the upper-middle class family I stayed with enjoyed a standard of living that we would consider lower class in America. Economic conditions have deteriorated significantly since I was there (at the time, a stronger dollar was worth 6 rubles, now a dollar is worth 23 rubles).

There are very wealthy people in Russia today, but they are an even greater exception to the rule than the super-rich in America. It's not third world, but I would agree with the statement that the standard of living is radically different than what most Americans are used to...and I was in one of the richest parts of the country in relatively prosperous times.

dmg said...

The Lightning since the trade deadline are playing way better than their standings' position would suggest.

Since the deadline, TB is 5-8-1, 11 points, .786 points per game.

On the season TB is 30-38-8, 68 points .895 points per game.

Prior/on the to the trading deadline TB was 25-30-7, .919 points per game.

Even if they're playing better than their record since the trade deadline would suggest, they're not very good.

tj said...

The standards of living maybe worse, but definitely not of third world country level. Does any NHL arena has its onw microbrewery?

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/29/sports/hockey/29hockey.html
"Lokomotiv now boasts increasing profits from ticket sales and advertising and has financial backing from the Russian Railroads, a large, wealthy state company. The team’s modern arena, equipped with luxury boxes, a rinkside restaurant and its own microbrewery, offsets Yaroslavl’s centuries-old monastery and crumbling Soviet apartment blocs. "

Moby said...

I find it difficult to hold the Caps' record of past performances against teams to any value considering the team we've had the past three years.

Scott said...

Hockey Bay is Gay

I hope we win today
and ovie scores Tres
That's all I have to Say

Just thought I'd channel some of the Junior High from last years comments

bil said...

Pulling a Yeats, my ass...

Ask Kirk Muller--he'll tell you it's called "Pulling a Romano"

Scott said...

JP - I'm Curious - where are you headed? If anyone ever comes to Las Vegas and wants to meet up to watch a caps game I would love to hang out with a caps fan(s). I'm a little dry out here in the desert...

Scai said...

Russia is not a 3rd world country. That's just a stupid prejudice. Rural parts may be less developed but Moscow is already the most expensive European city. Hockey players would play and live in cities where the standard of living wouldn't differentiate too much from Western countries.

sonia said...

listen, all i know is that when i was in russia i had to bring my own toilet paper everywhere with me.

that and i'm russian, but whatevs.

hotdog88gt said...

Yes, boys. Go them them. Please.

JP said...

@ Scott -

I'm in LA.

@ Everyone -

Why does Faux's foreign policy experience get more scrutiny than Hillary Clinton's?

Scai said...

Oh how I wished Fleischmann would have been scratched tonight! "Flush", I guess.
Come on you bashers!