Wednesday, December 30, 2009

BoO and Canada's Team

So, while Mike Fisher is edged out of the Olympic team by Richards he has the solace that he doesn't have to suffer on the Leafs.  Oh, and he gets to hair-tug Carrie Underwood.

Meanwhile, two douchebags with ties to the BoO play roles on Canada's Olympic and Junior teams.  You all know I'm referring to Heatley in that first reference, tying up the Senator's contribution to douchebaggery on the teams that represent Canada on the international stage.  But what of Toronto?  Well, Kadri is taking care of doucheness at the Junior level.  

The Senators got rid of their douchebag.  The Leafs can't wait to get theirs.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Well now....

.... that was fucking calamitous.

The Pens win over the Senators thereby bringing Yoda out for his third post of the 09/10 season.

Lesson's we learned:

  • Leclaire had the puck-in-face fear his first game back from a sub-orbital fracture.  I know how that feels - it took half a year for me to get back in front of infield grounders after getting a baseball right below the eye for 13 stitches.  Clouston made a mistake putting him in.  Elliott should`ve played until post-Christmas;
  • Matt Cooke is a huge fucking pussy.  He takes Donovan out for several weeks with a knee-on-knee and then pussies out on a fight with a 37 y/o lacking 1.5 ligaments;
  • Chris Neil, also back from several weeks of a knee injury, takes on a guy 10x bigger and bleeds him.  Fuck yeah Chris Neil.
  • Kovalev can play.  He, next to Ruutu, was one of the better Senators on the night.  Now start doing it more often, man!
  • As Alfie goes, so go the Senators.  And Michalek showed more balls than Heatley has ever fondled in sticking up for Alfie.
  • 47 shots/2 goals.  Soooo much more frustrating than 25 shots/no goals.

Adams & Cooke better pay the next time the teams meet or my g/f is going to start mailing tortured Arctic Penguins from the Papineau Zoo to Mario.

Oh yeah, the Leafs lost, but that's not news.

I got drunk with NSFW

Just got back from a little work stint in Toronto this week. The cool part of the trip was Monday night.

After a long day working outside in the cold we hit up the bar (Shoeless Joe's) attached to our hotel just down the street from the ACC. We had a bite to eat and started watching the game when a couple guys sat down beside us. One of the guys was Jiri Tlusty.

Long story short... We ended up watching the game with Jiri, talking hockey and about the players he's played with and against, who he liked on the team and who he didn't, how he felt about getting traded and the prospect of playing for Maurice again. I didn't have the nerve to tell him I had seen pictures of his penis.

Apparently he was back in Toronto because his work Visa had expired so he was unable to play for Carolina or their farm team until that paperwork was finalized.

All in all Tlusty was a pretty cool guy and ended up telling us some pretty cool stories about the guys on the team and life as a hockey player. I'm going to have a hard time expensing the $360 bar bill that we accumulated from 6pm-3am, but it was worth it. I'm a little busy with work and finishing up my Christmas shopping so I'm probably out of commission until at least next week but I'll post the full story when I get back.

Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas week in the BoO

Ok, so with Muppet stuffing himself for a month with Pad Thai and the rest of us apparently occupied with real-life activities, that last post is a little stale.

Since then, we've seen the following:

*Ruutu is making a case for a contract extension.  Anshu was right - he's playing very, very good all-round hockey of late.

One more game each this week as Toronto faces leading rookie scorer, John Tavares and Ottawa faces the Pens who will now appear in the details of the "Most shutouts by an NHL goalie" entry of the NHL record book.

I won't be around much for the next week - I suppose not too many will be.   Have a safe & Happy Holidays, all!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Order is restored

Having planned the 2010 Stanley Cup route after Toronto's admittedly undeserved win over Ottawa, Toronto - led by Toskala and representing the highest financially valued team - returned to form, shitting the bed 6-3 against the team that can't make a dime.   But hey, Kessel scored, so everything is ok, right?

Meanwhile, Ottawa began 2 months of Spezza free play, taking on the top team in the NE in a 4-pointer, earning Elliott his 2nd shutout on the season.    Perhaps the strangest thing in this game (even moreso that seeing Kovalev try) was regularly seeing three Senators D-men on the ice in 5-on-5 play.  No wait, that's not right.... Campoli was a winger last night. 

Alfie's advice to Campoli:

 “You can turn the puck over a few times and the defence will back you up.” 

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

2010 World Junior Roster

All set and ready to go.
Nasty Nazem Kadri and Jared "Lurch" Cowen to represent the BoO.

I was in attendance for the USA, Russia and gold medal (Sweden) games in Ottawa last year and let me tell ya, it's going to be hard for this years team to top those games.

First prelim game against Latvia at 3pm on Boxing Day.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Monday, December 14, 2009


Sorry for missin the live thread boys. My bros were over and beer was a flowin. Plus, I'm on call this week. Made for some interesting calls.

Ooh, ooh. I had drunken memories of Lalime when I watched Blake shovel that weak backhander in on Elliott. Pure awesomeness.

Game notes:

-Alfredsson is a douche... and getting older. (Beauchemin shoulda fucked him up)
-The leafs finally won a game that they probably didn't deserve to win. For a change.
-Toskala played... umm... solid (3 or 4 games in a row? WTF?)
-Carkner redemption on Orr? Nuh uh. Lucky punch, wont happen again.
-Hockey taste like elbow. Ex-teamates not have niceness, eh Kovalev?
-Kessel has more sperm in one testicle than the whole Sens squad combined. (Wesssssssley Snipes baby)
-Its hockey, not soccer... Winchester.

Update. 2 points out of a playoff spot.

GDT: Battle of Ontario Part 3. Senators @ Leafs

Ok, folks. As promised on Saturday, we're bringing live blogging (courtesy of CoverItLive). I've sent out invites to those whose e-mails I could scrounge up so I don't have to add during the event. I might miss the start if the g/f commands it, but will be in on the fun ASAP.

The next installment of the BoO takes place tonight. While Leafs fans tend to gather at Pension Plan Puppets for their regular Leaf game weep in, and Senators fans have had the opportunity for some time to live blog Senators games over at Scarlett Ice, this installment brings the first opportunity to have real-time commenting for the games that bring the two sides of the Battle of Ontario together.

We'll open things up at 6:45 pm tonight. Be patient if it's not working right off the bat. It's the first attempt at this and I think it's free-commenting (i.e., no comment approvals required), but it's not terribly clear. Anyone familiar with the program is welcome give pointers.

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Keep rollin, rollin, rollin.

Now I know y'all be lovin this shit right here.

Leafs last 10: 7-3-0
Sens last 10: 4-5-1

Pretty important night in the East.

With a Leafs win, a Boston win, a Florida win, an Atlanta win, and a Buffalo win, the Leafs would move from 14th into a tie for 10th and would be 2 points out of the playoffs!!!1.

C'mon Santa. Other than that little mishap with the hooker, I've been pretty damn good this year. Make it happen.

Sidenote: I will be playing the exact opposite on my Proline ticket tonight.

No 3 point games please.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

GDT: #15 @ 6 & #1 @ 14

The best and the worst of the Eastern Conference play the teams of the Battle of Ontario tonight at 7:00 for both games.

#1 Washington visits the only team with more points than Carolina at the ACC. Poolers with Ovechkin, Green, Backstrom and Varlamov should pull up a chair and a nice bottle of wine and watch their fortunes (and pool positions) improve.

#6 Ottawa, coming off a rather well fought (though terribly boring) shutout against the preseason Eastern favorites, is visited by said only team worse than the Leafs in Carolina. Eric Cole, resurgent in the last several weeks after a Spezza-like start & Uh-oh Corvo are on the IR, but Cam Ward is back in the mix.

I don't know if it's intentional, but if you look at Carolina's website, it looks like all the fans are covered in blood. With the Canes getting slaughtered in the standings this year, it's quite apropos. Maybe Dexter moved to Raleigh.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Preview - BoO Part III GDT: Now with live bloggy sweetness!

This is a preview for what we'll be seeing on the BoO every time the two participants share the ice. Click the "Read More" link below. I'll move this up the site on Monday, but consider yourselves notified!

The next installment of the BoO takes place this coming Monday night. While Leafs fans tend to gather at Pension Plan Puppets for their regular Leaf game weep in, and Senators fans have had the opportunity for some time to live blog Senators games over at Scarlett Ice, this installment brings the first opportunity to have real-time commenting for the games that bring the two sides of the Battle of Ontario together.

We'll open things up at 6:45 pm on Monday. Be patient if it's not working right off the bat. It's the first attempt at this and I think it's free-commenting (i.e., no comment approvals required), but it's not terribly clear. Anyone familiar with the program is welcome give pointers.

Note: I'll be pulling DHS's tweets in (unless objected to by DHS) and the BoO tweets. If any twitterers (is that a word?) from either side of the aisle are out there, let me know via the normal comments and I'll set them up to be pulled in to the live chat.

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This and That II

You're a GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs receiving guidance from a former GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs:

Justin Pogge or Tuukka Rask?


This and that

I hate Jason Blake.

And the Senators.


Wednesday, December 09, 2009









I hate Jason Bla...

I love Jason Blake.

FU Roloson

Pretty quiet around here. I wonder why?

With the third best record in the East in the last 10 games the Leafs are looking to hit double digits in the win column tonight.

Hopefully the horseshoe fell out of Roloson's ass.

C'mon lads. Win one for Muppet.

Monday, December 07, 2009

GDT: Atlanta @ Toronto

Ok, let's push the Muppet love fest down a bit.

All that needs to be said about tonight's match that sees Atlanta heading to Toronto for a 7 pm start is this:

Put Kovalchuk in your Fantasy lineup and win the night.

Leaf Nation

I'm leaving tomorrow morning for over a month in Southeast Asia. It wasn't easy wrangling that much time off from work, but luckily I'm a Leaf fan and my boss seems to like me. The trip will take me to Thailand, Vietnam and if we have time Cambodia. I'm going to attempt to find a Leaf game on TV somewhere in one of those countries. I'll document my efforts and try and get here to post how this is going, or just put something together when I get back.

A few Things:

1. Five-O you'll really have to hold the Leafs side of this thing together brother!

2. Leafs are 5-2-1 in their last 8 and the Sens 1-4 in their last five. I really hope that trend continues while I'm away.

3. If for some reason, I never make it back (we are doing some trekking in Vietnam), know that I don't really hate the Sens or Sens fans that much. They're the teams score I check right after the Leafs. Wait. I do that because I want to enjoy them losing. Never mind then, I do hate the Sens. Fans are OK though...

Talk soon...



I had Kovalev in this table as well earlier but that's a little unfair.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

"You know what your problem is?"

That's a question, asked of a Leafs fan in reference to the (mis)fortunes of the Toronto club, that will be answered with:

a) "No." or b) "There is no problem."

Well, THM has the answer to that question and it lies in the subject of this next quote:

"He brings a tremendous amount of experience and I know that he will make an immediate impact [...]," said Burke.

Now whom was Burke speaking of?

Ok, let us, for a moment, forgive the failings of the Swiss cheese defense, the one-man offense, and moonlighting* coach who can't be fired until March. What is left to address?

Goaltending. But what, specifically, about the goaltending? We've talked plenty about the thus-far undeserved praise about twice-ablated Montster Jo' and the overpayment of Toskala but we've completely ignored the one guy common amongst all goaltenders (aside from playing for the Teacher's recreation squad).

"Francois Allaire" would be the answer to the above queries. Thus far untouched, I think it's time to look at what this guy has produced: two 3+ and one 4+ GAA goaltenders with a combined total of 8 wins in 28 games played. He, himself, is credited with 20 games played in his career.... in Thetford Mines. That's not even the AHL.

He's said to have been the reason Roy won two Cups. Roy was a natural talent. Good on FA to take the credit. He's said to have been the reason JSG was stellar... for a year and a half.

According to Wikipedia,

"The 'Allaire style' stresses sound positioning, getting down into the butterfly, and taking up as much net as possible. He has encouraged his goalies to wear the biggest allowable gear."
What, exactly, did goalies do prior to the 'advent' of 'sound positining' and 'taking up as much as the net as possible? And biggest allowable gear.... maybe the guys aren't comfortable with that. Maybe, instead of presenting a stationary wall, they'd like some mobility. You know.... that might be useful in the 'new NHL'.

You want to see the team stop letting in goals? Dump Allaire.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Coach of the year?

I remember when Brian Burke was on The Hour when the Leafs were 7 miserable games deep into the season and Strombo asked him if Ron Wilson's job was at risk. As Burke had also told reporters, panelists and probably a few others at the time:


Well, the title of this post is intended to get Sens fans backs up, but the truth is when you look at how the Leafs have been playing for the last month or so and then you read a quote I've pasted below, one does wonder if Wilson could have a chance of taking home the Jack if the team keeps this up and does the unthinkable - makes the playoffs?

"If they play at this pace they're going to get in the playoffs," Hitchcock said. "They look like a team that's starting to figure out the balance between offence and defence.

"They're quick. They get on you quick. It just looks like to me there's a coordination on the checking side that Ron (Wilson) has wanted. The team looks exactly the same way as San Jose when Ron was there, checking-wise."

Nicely said big man. Nicely said.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Game Day Thread - Goodbye Naked Guy Edition

Leafs at Columbus and Sens at Kings tonight.

But first, Jiri Tlusty has been traded to the Hurricanes. Burke sends the Leafs 2006 1st round choice to Carolina for their 2009 27th overall pick Philippe Paradis. Not gonna lie here, never heard of the guy, but The Star says he's a power forward with 19 points and 43 PIM's in the Q this season.
Tlusty, unfortunately, will not be remembered for his contributions to the team in 74 games over a few seasons, but instead his cell phone camera and his twig and berries.

See ya later kid.

Leafs are 7 points back of Tampa who hold the 8th playoff spot, and Toronto has a game in hand. Do the math folks.

Senators lost their last one and face a pretty good team in LA. I think the odds are against them, but even a 7-2 wins the pot sometimes.

I'm on a stopover on my way out east so that's all I got. Have at 'er.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Post game hangover

Surprisingly not much chatter after a rather significant night for each of the BoO teams though both situations had a mix of the good and the evil. 

For the bad guys, a 3-0 shutout against the Habs in downtown Montreal is a big win.  The first divisional win and the first shutout gives added oompf to an important 2 points.  However, goalie-of-the-future (tongue in cheek) Gustavsson suffered an elevated heart rate midway through the 1st and had to be taken to hospital for "precautionary" evaluation.  At this point, following early season heart surgery (of the minor sort), "precautionary" evaluation should include every possible known test for this young talent (whom I personally will cheer for in the 2014 Olympics against the US, Finland, etc., but loath in the blue and white).

Here's hoping 100,000+ years of human evolution influenced by environmental stimuli and crossing of varied strands of DNA helices sees him through this into a much healthier career.

For the good guys, they traveled to the new home of selfish, douchebag, team-last, He(atly)first, Alfie/Fisher-hater,  Dany Heatley for their first post-abuse of NTC game.  The Sharks won, to be sure with DH picking up 2 helpers.  However, the quo for the Senators quid came out on top with 2 in the net to win the man-for-man battle.  Sadly, Chris Neil wasn't around to enlarge fuck-face's other pupil.

Now have at it.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Double header Tuesday

The Sens play the late game (10:30 on Sportsnet) in San Jose. The BoC Sharks contributor Mike Chen gives his take on the return of Michalek and Cheechoo - mainly 'Cheech':
There aren't too many players where you can point to one injury that jacks up their entire career, but Cheechoo's dramatic fall from NHL glory seems to come almost exclusively from his double-sports hernia surgery following the 2006-07 season. He's just never been the same after that.
While Michalek will probably get warm applause, I'm guessing an outpouring of affection for Cheechoo, including the return of the famous "CHEEEEEEEEEEEEEECH" call and perhaps a few train whistles. You bust your ass for us, we'll always have your back.

We'll be watching Heatley of course - hopefully being given a ride by the A-train or Carkner.

In Montreal (7:30 on TSN), the Leafs look to get to 20pts on the year. It's really unlikely as they suck so bad.
One of the guys from Four Habs Fans says: "Whatever happened to that whole truculence thing?"
Well, I'd say they got part of it down. Linking those to wins is the problem.
Taking a quick glance at some stats, the Leafs may end up being the first team since the 2002-2003 Blue Jackets to have more fighting majors than points in a season. Congrats!

Also, the Leafs as the Stones I get, but Trust? Bad.

Give him a 10 year, 4.5mil per, with a NMC!

DJ makes a case for Ian White - surely he deserves more money than Komisarek!

Monday, November 30, 2009

I feel dirty

I know, I know. You Leafs fans are going to hate me for referencing an article from this guy, but I found his little tidbit of information somewhat encouraging.

"Clearly, it’s that initial tailspin the Leafs will be fighting all season. Since the catastrophic 0-7-1 start, the team is a respectable – if bizarre – 6-4-6. Anytime a hockey club loses just four of 16 games in regulation, it is doing something right. In this case, however, it has enabled the Leafs only to escape the NHL basement; the club sits 29th overall today, four points up on last-place Carolina. That’s how damaging the first 3½ weeks of the season have proven to be."

By no means am I predicting PLAYOFFS!!!! here, but the Leafs currently sit 9 points out of a spot with at least 1 game in hand on the four teams in front of them.

Like douchebag mentions in his article, they'll be fighting an uphill battle all season (after posting that abysmal record to start the season) but if they can string together a few more wins this week (4 games) that will at least bring them back into the mix of things. And by "mix of things" I mean "out of a lottery pick".

That said, they'll have their hands full with the Sabres tonight. The Sabres are 11-4-0 in their last 15 games against the Leafs.

The good news... Toskala is still hurt.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Spezza Day Thread

I tuned in to the Sens/Jackets game in time to see Spezza lose the puck not once but twice in his own end of the ice and then take a penalty.

Ya, he's a real "defensive" guy now!

Anyway, 12 minutes left. Go Jackets

What's the matter, can't stand the heat?

I just want to say how typical it is that after a Leaf win and a Sens loss, not one Senator fan comment and it's 11am.

If those roles were reversed this morning, there would be 30 comments and two posts from THM by now.

Ya, I'm calling you all out!

(Insert "300" shot, me with my sword and 10,000 gruesome looking Sens fans now running towards me!)

Here's a question to wet your appetite:

Is Corey Clouston proving that he has absolutely no clue how to coach star players? Lets do the math here. Heatley asks to be traded and Spezza along with Kovalev have done absolutely squat this season. Sure, Clouston has Carkner, a career AHLer playing better than he ever has, but is this because that's all Clouston should be, an AHL coach?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


-According to some local Toronto sports shops, Leaf jerseys have dropped in sales by up to 25%.
-Scalpers say they are lucky to get face value for non weekend game tickets.
-Reports out of MLSE say some of the Leafs corporate boxes are remaining empty for the first time since the ACC came into existence.


Enough said folks.

So with that brutal record hanging over their head and some of their most potent efforts resulting in OT losses this past week, is there any way the Leafs will get out from under this darkness? While no Leaf fan in their right mind thinks the playoffs are even a distinct possibility anymore, some believe there is still opportunity for the team to grow and win some games and climb into a position of respectability. Right now finishing the season in 11th place and handing Boston the 7th overall pick would be a victory. That's how bad things are.

*** *** *** *** ***

In Ottawa, three straight wins against good teams has certainly shut up those who said an easy schedule was the reason for the Sens decent start. I'm one of those people. So I'll eat some crow. Maybe the Sens are better than I think?
(take that in)
I'm sure one could try and argue that the Pens are playing crappy hockey right now and the Caps were exhausted from a compressed road trip. But a W is a W, and the Sens have some breathing room and a playoff spot. Toronto don't.

I just hope that any "I told you so's" out there from Sens fans are diluted by a loss tonight. So... Go Devils!

Leafs get TSN and the Sens are relegated to back-up TSN2 where if you tuned in today at 3pm you could have watched the Stihl Chainsaw competition (Duff?).
Hey, at least we still get prime billing Leaf fans... although that may not last long either.

How you doin'?

Looking through the box score last night, I noticed Antoine Vermette and Anton Stralman scored all of the goals for the Jackets. Besides the fact they almost have the same first name, as you know they are both ex players from the BoO.

Got me wondering how other ex Leafs and ex Sens are doing these days?
Here's a few of them...

19 assists and a goal in Atlanta. That makes him tied for 4th in the NHL in assists. His hefty raise to $4M looks maybe like it's been worth it for Atlanta. Was Burke too quick to trade this guy?

8 points and a -3 in 16 games for the Oilers. Word is Pat Quinn already hates him with a passion because he's selfish and unmotivated. Ok... I made that last part up.

Once the "future" in Toronto, this 24th overall draft pick has 2 points in 7 games and has made Cliff Fletcher look pretty sharp, for an old guy.

Sent to Columbus in a deal that brought back Porcelain Pascal, it seems Vermette just needed a change of scenery. He's just under a point per game since the move. Thankfully, his trade means we won't have to see him shirtless on this blog anymore. Because seriously, that just makes us feel bad about ourselves.

CARLO COLAIACOVO: Speaking of porcelain, the cursed one seemed to find his game and his luck in St Louis. He's scoring at a rate of about .5 points a game, playing close to 20 minutes a night and so far his only setback has been the flu. Oops, did I just jinx him?

Since we get a stats comparison between him and four Sens every third day, I don't need to tell you he's 1st in goals with 18 and 4th on points in the NHL. Everyone is happy in Ottawa though because there are four Senators that have more points combined as he does right?

Since requesting a reported $1.5M more than the Leafs would offer and then being traded, Moore must be kicking himself in the ass. He's a non-factor in Florida and making one million dollars instead of close to two. Our only hope is that Florida really really want to reunite him with Jason Blake.

He's actually a +2 in Calgary which is great for a grinder/fighter. He has a few points as well and is making $500K. Playing for a cup contender must also be pretty nice. And for all that, all he has to do is get his lips punched off by Colton Orr once in a while. That has to beat playing for Ottawa.

There are more. Feel free to add more if you like and they don't have to be recent even. Pot shots at other BoO team however are mandatory.


..... something coming something coming from Burke's mouth that garners respect.

Your average Leaf fan celebrates.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Give me a break

The Ottawa Senators will be forced to do without Pascal Leclaire for up to four weeks as the Sens' number one netminder will undergo surgery to repair a fractured cheekbone.
The injury occured during Monday's victory over the Capitals when an errant puck bounced off the glass behind the Senators bench and hit him in the head.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Are you convinced?

Some resident of leaf hamlet suggested here about two weeks ago that the Senators had been playing "bottom feeders" for far too long thus inflating their win column.  The implication was that, facing the upper echelon teams, they would not fare so well; that they would falter.

Well here ya go, doubters.  

Suck it!

Unfortunately, Leclaire with a possible broken jaw (sportsnet wrapup).  What luck: sitting on the bench and getting a puck in the face.  This guy needs to invest in horseshoes.  

Meanwhile, the Leafs blow it again.  That old saying "just get the puck on the net" was taken to heart.   The problem is, you should maybe try to score.   

Big deal a brewin'?

Blackhawks assistant GM Kevin Cheveldayoff was in attendance at the Leafs/Capitals game Saturday amidst rumours swirling that a trade is being discussed.

Here's where I got the story.

The players the Hawks are rumoured to be shopping are: Sopel, Sharp, Versteeg and Barker as they all have salaries ranging from $2.5m to $4m, and the Hawks need to clear space to sign their young guns.

HNIC said it was Sopel the Leafs are interested in. That makes very little sense, unless it's part of a larger package. Story says the Leafs will take on the salary but are wanting draft picks included.

We'll see how this shakes out.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Stitches in my mouth. Lightness in my step.

You know that were an abused bunch when the fourth win in 21 games can make us feel so good.

...Like a hobo finding an unopened can of tuna in a dumpster.

...Like thinking Cancun is "awesome" because you've never had a vacation before.

...Or, on a hot day when even a Carling tastes good, because that's all they have.

There was something about those helmets on backwards, the 5'10" Toskala standing taller and Phil Kessel sniping one in front of the home crowd that helps numb the agony of these last two months. Heck, one might really get ambitious and see last night as the big turning point - the night the Leafs learned to relax and have fun and then slayed a dragon.

Of course, I have a mouth full of stitches and some of the best pain killers my company health insurance can buy. So it's possible that I'm completely off my face right now.

Happy Sunday.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Which one are you?

Another dandy from our buddy DGB.

I'd like to think I'm "The Realist" but unfortunately, I'm probably more of a "Just one cup guy who's getting older".

After 20 games



Well. It doesn't get much worse than this.
The only positive I can take out of this game is that Ian White is a beauty.
Here's the link to the game in six. Check out the call at the 5 minute mark. You be the judge.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Post-game wrap-up

First up:  Penguins @ Senators

Yoda put his bet in at 5-1 Pens.  Game ends 6-2 Sens.  You almost had it Yoda, but for the typo and the fat finger!

So the Sens beat the Stanley Cup champs (with Crosby, Malkin & Fleury).  Can you Leafers spin that somehow to show the Sens were lucky?  They outplayed Pittsburg throughout.  Leclaire with his mandatory weak goal, but stands tall the rest of the game.

Phillips with 2 goals, Fisher with 3 pts,  Carkner with a goal and a +3,  and the proof-of-payment for the Michalek/Heatley trade scores as I type this.    Secondary scoring issues?  No more!  

Oh, and Neil doesn't take on skilled fighter?  He had something to say about that by drawing Eric Goddard, 3" bigger and 15 lbs heavier.  Coward my ass.

Next up:  Toronto @ Carolina

Melt                  down

Melt          down

Melt   down

Meltdown! Meltdown! Meltdown! Meltdowwwwwwn!

LOLZ to last the night.  I need to keep the fridge full of beer.

At least they got a point!

GDT. Pens @ Sens + Two Coaches Paid by the Leafs

Gonchar is back for the Pens as they visit Ottawa.    Kovalev is going to be fired up for this one as he's heading home to Russia for his mother-in-law's funeral. 

#29 TO visits #30 Carolina to switch positions in the rankings as Burke threatens to fire players rather than fire the coach (which is where he should start).

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The fight decider

All the junk being tossed around about how Neil should fight Rosehill but not Schenn despite the bad on-ice decision that would be had me inspired to develop a "Fight Decider" matrix.  

Pretty simple:  I looked at the guys on each team who had at least 2 major penalties (fights).  I took the averagetime on ice (TOI) per point (P) which gives the average amount of time between points.  I then divided fight penalty minutes (FPM: No. of Majors x 5 min) by this value to give a trade-off value.

So, how would one use this to decide if it's intelligent to fight an opponent?  

Well, a neutral match-up (with respect to the overall effect on the team) will have a similar 5 minute trade-off value (TrOV).    A good match-up would see one's opponent with a substantially higher TrOV.  A bad matchup would see one's opponent with substantially lower TrOV.

So.... how do the Senators/Leafs players stack up?

Player          TrOV

Rosehill        0.023

Schenn         0.029

Orr               0.082

Carkner       0.105

Neil               0.127

So it's pretty clear that Neil fighting Rosehill or Schenn would be a bad tradeoff for the Senators.  Neil shouldn't have fought Schenn based on this, though Schenn taking a run at him is a good enough reason.  Even Carkner/Orr doesn't make sense for the Senators, but is a good choice for the Leafs.  

I checked out some 'skill' guys too. Fisher comes in at 0.153 & Hagman comes in at 0.125. An even tradeoff would be Neil v. Hagman.

Remember kids, criticize the method and results, but keep it in perspective.Of course, this doesn't count in fighting for team motivational purposes.  I'm going to try to work something together that establishes a GF/GA differential while the fighter is in the box, but that's a little manual intensive.  Also, a team-value factor may be added to account for how valuable a guy is relative to the others on his team (e.g., a goon on Toronto with 4 points is probably similar in scoring value to their second liners!).

Post 09/10 BoO Pt II gloating/wound licking thread.

And the answer to Five-O's question is this:   


Mike Zeisberger, mis-titles this piece.

Sorry, Ron.  Yes you are.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Is there still hope?

The Other Vatican provides Leaf Nation with a little perspective.

I'm not saying I didn't sip on some of the "PLAYOFFS!!!*!!" kool-aid that Burke was serving this summer but we all knew this season was going to be a struggle.

Here's hoping we can turn this ship around... starting tonight.

Toskala to start.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Chicago Good. Leafs and Sens, bad.

Seeing as the Leafs are sucking ass and the Sens have lost 2 straight, it's kind of quiet around here. However I have to give a shout out to the city of Chicago and Blackhawk fans - because they deserve it.

What an amazing night Friday was.

The Hawks fans at United center treated me and my friend like guests in their home. They were constantly coming up to us and asking where we're from and wanted to talk hockey, which was really unexpected. They were warm and friendly and I think enjoyed having a whole bunch of Leaf fans in attendance. And there were a lot of us.

Blackhawk fans are REALLY into their team. Being there live during the Star Spangled Banner was a real treat. Leaf fans at the ACC could learn a thing or two about setting the tone in the building. It was awesome down there and I have no doubt it's the #1 reason the Hawks are coming out of the gate so strongly in their games.

Hawks fans, the people who run the United center concessions right down to the cabbie who drove us there - Thank You for an awesome night.

Overall, an amazing experience.

What was also really cool was the guys to our right were diehard Bruins fans in town for business. Awesome guys, totally know their hockey... but OUTRAGED that Chiarelli let Kessel go and continuously told us how lucky we were to have him. They didn't kick me and my friend's asses for having Kessel jersey's though. I appreciated that.

One last thing: It wouldn't be the Battle of Ontario unless I posted something about Ottawa. Two things happened Friday night. One was a Chicago fan came up to my buddy while I was in the washroom and just screamed "Sens Suck" and high-fived him. Secondly, of all the Leaf jersey's we saw the best was the guy who had actually paid good money to have the words SENS SUCK sewn on his shirt.

I am actually still really curious - was that you Jared?

I recommend you go down and see a game there.

I am going to see the Leafs in Philly in March it looks like. Chicago has set the bar huge. Awesome people, awesome city, can't say enough good things about it.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Ray Day

Be sure to head to Scarlett Ice tonight for the live blog in addition to the comments here.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Going to see Ray

Looking forward to tomorrow's match against the Flyers with Ray in net. TSN has a short spot up about the reunion.

He's been playing well overall - a nice 0.922 SV% with only 10 goals allowed in his past 6 games.

For old time's sake.

Somethin' about a *real* battle.....

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The good news for Sens fans is that Quinn was never very good at winning in Ottawa.

Well, at least during the regular season...

Welcome to the game day thread!

Pat Quinn brings his new Edmonton team into Kanata to face the Sens. Edmonton have played a few more games than Ottawa but only have one more point to show for it, so Ottawa must like their chances in this one. We can bring up the whole eastern conference vs the west argument again, in minutia, but a quick glance is all you really need to see that the West is certainly as a whole, the best. So far anyway. So Ottawa would be wise to not underestimate the Oilers who have scratched out their points theoretically against stronger teams than Ottawa have.

I still like Ottawa in this one. At home, coming off a late collapse against New Jersey, the Sens should certainly be motivated and wanting to get back on the rails. There are no must win games in November, but Ottawa's confidence could go either way right now, one would think, and it doesn't get much easier than Edmonton for the rest of the month.

The Wild ride into town wondering what the hell has happened to them since Jacques Lemaire departed to ruin the fan experience in New Jersey. The Wild are last in the west and with ex-Sen Martin Havlat leading the offence, they aren't scoring a bunch of goals despite the implementation of a more offence-friendly system. They are allowing more however, despite Backstrom still being a top 5 goalie in the NHL.

Same West vs East theory applies for the Leafs as once again Minnesota are probably not as bad as they seem having had to face teams like San Jose and Vancouver instead of Tampa and Florida. The Wild have also won a few games lately, beating the Rangers and Penguins in the last week - a feat neither Toronto or Ottawa for that matter have been able to duplicate.

I'll call it a double victory for Ontario with the Leafs winning a tight one, 2-1.
I do believe Komisarek was scheduled to play but haven't checked since this morning. Anybody know?

Enjoy the games.

Norris winner gives Leaf goalie props.

I don't for a second think that I'm anything more than a fan with too much spare time on his hands. So while I'll try and tell you that I believe Gustavsson looks like the Leafs best goalie since Joseph was stealing playoff games from the Sens, here's a second opinion:

"I think they have found their goalie," Lidstrom said, adding that Gustavsson reminds him of another Swedish goalie. "He looks like (Rangers' Henrik) Lundqvist in there," Lidstrom said. "He's bigger than Henrik, but both have the ability to make themselves big in the net and not give you too much to shoot at."

I just noticed Lidstrom is a UFA after this season.
Think he might get a few calls July 1st?

Monday, November 09, 2009

I haven't even looked at the stats...

But is there a link between the Leafs absence of fighting majors in the last two weeks and their accumulating points in the standings?

It hit me last night... When's the last time Colton Orr pounded the shit out of somebody?

I'm drunk and out of the country. Can somebody look it up and see if I'm right? I do believe that during the Leafs run of points there has been very little "truculence".

Ya, sure, Gustavsson, Kessel, blah blah blah.

Anybody willing to look into this?

Friday, November 06, 2009

GDT - "Get me out of here" edition!

It might just be the most pathetic "battle" of the year. The winner of tonight's game between Carolina and Toronto WON'T be in 30th place.


All the same, you can't get to 8th place in the east from 15th without first passing 14th. So the Leafs need to get it done.

Carolina are injured and have zero confidence and can't seem to put a puck in the net. Exactly the kind of dog in the corner you don't want to play (See Anaheim facing the Leafs).

The good news is Toronto is healthy, have Phil Kessel on the first line, and since having our #1 and #2 goalies back have earned at least a point out of every game.
It's something, anyway.

Wilson hasn't said who will start tonight but my guess is that desperation will override the quality of opponent here and we'll see Gustavsson in net as the Leafs look for only their 2nd win of the season. Worry about Detroit tomorrow.

UPDATE 2:57pm: Now a fact: Gustavsson gets the start.

Leafs 5 Carolina 1. Kessel with a pair of goals, giving him one more than Spezza. :)

What's going on with Finger?

Chemmy at PPP asks. The answer? He's not who they thought he was.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Quick n' Dirty GDT

Both BoO teams in action today.

Tampa Bay - coming off a charity point game against a full & healthy Leaf squad with all of its top stars (that's you Kessel, Blake, Komisarek & Monster Jo') - arrives in Ottawa to meet the host squad missing its stud C & D gamers.

Meanwhile, Toronto heads to Carolina to face Ottawa native Rod Brind'Amour and an Eric Staal-less Hurricanes being backstopped either by backup Leighton or the abysmally performing Cam Ward (sub 0.900 SV%!). Both teams have flat out lost 12 games, but Carolina has won twice the number Toronto has @ 2. Does it seem right to anyone that they have the same number of points? Carolina will have something to say about that tonight.


Did they add 'Your team sucks' as one of the high priority groups?

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Lets move past that wee mistake shall we?

The Muppet has been severely humbled this morning.

As one often does when choking on their own foot, lets change the subject as quickly as possible!

I recall one of you last week snorted something about Gustavsson maybe someday being over .900?

Well, I've been keeping a close eye and what do we have here:


Lets also keep in mind that Toronto spent months of hard work signing this guy but traded no assets while the Sens traded away Antoine Vermette who, as I write this, has 12 points, would be the 2nd highest scorer on the Sens and has 7 points more than Alexei Kovalev, the $5M forward.

It does make one wonder, is Murray the worst GM in the NHL right now?

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

6 != 22

We couldn't let this die in the comments section.

Muppet says:

"A very interesting fact was revealed this morning while I drove out there, one that I wish we had known for the last 3 months as it pretty much kills the concept that Phil Kessel's 08/09 season success is owed exclusively to one Marc Savard. Raise your hand Sens fans if you've written or spoken this at least once since the trade in September."

THM raises his hand and waves it around like a giddy schoolkid "I did! I did! IIIIIIIII DIIIID!!!!"

Muppet says:


Oh.... but wait!!!

Marc Savard indeed assisted on 22 of 36 of Kessel's goals.  That's 61.1%.  Maybe the source that left Muppet so excited to return from Oakville for his post -- already tanked in preparation for the AM640 game day revealing of the bronze Kessel Statue @ Yong and Dundas --  entered that into his Excel sheet as a fraction, hit % on the format bar and quickly hit the alphanumeric conversion.

So to keep our accounting straight


Your Muppet facepalm.

Suck it Matt Stajan

Leafs Game Day Thread - The Kessel Edition

I had an 8am presentation in Oakville and it has nearly killed me waiting to get back to the office to create this post.

A very interesting fact was revealed this morning while I drove out there, one that I wish we had known for the last 3 months as it pretty much kills the concept that Phil Kessel's 08/09 season success is owed exclusively to one Marc Savard. Raise your hand Sens fans if you've written or spoken this at least once since the trade in September.

So, without further adieu, here it is.


(Courtesy of the Toronto Star)

To take nothing away from Marc Savard, who is a great disher of the puck, it would seem from that statistic that the anti-Kessel/anti-Leaf argument in this case has absolutely no legs. Kessel was leading scorer on a team and the leading assist guy had almost nothing to do with it.

While I don't expect Kessel to do all that much for the first few weeks as he becomes familiar with new teammates and a new system it is not out of the question for him to have a memorable first night. Many players who are on long layoffs often do, the adrenaline more than compensating for the rusty hinges. I think we can expect something and the safe bet is a goal while playing on the league's best PP. A feed from Kaberle who, as I write this, has more assists than Marc Savard.

One last thing: I bought a brand new RBK Leafs dark jersey last night. I'm in Chicago next Friday to see the Leafs battle the Hawks. Great seats. Can't wait. I hope the Leafs score a few and I can be on TV. If I do, I'll be sure to turn around so you can all see the name and number I've chosen for the back.

Phill Kessel. #81.

Call me optimistic.

UPDATE: Kessel's tests were positive, officially announced he is 100% playing tonight.

Monday, November 02, 2009

No pressure

Kaberle today on Kessel:
"He's a skill guy. He showed he can score 30, 40, 50 goals a year."

Tomas - he's scored 11, 19, and 36 in his three seasons.

And the leading scorer in the NHL is...

Well, for one week anyway! Kaberle's incredible 13 points last week fetched him the NHL's first star.

His 17 points now leads all defenseman in the NHL in scoring.

His 15 assists are tops in the NHL.

He is 12th in overall NHL scoring, ahead of Sidney Crosby.

His 12 powerplay points also lead the NHL.

Congratulations Thomas. Lets hope that feeding Kessel some passes up the wing can give the Leafs as a team the same kind of big week.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

First it was the Argos....

...and now its the Leafs??  What took so long?

(UofT & York football teams wimpering in the corner....)

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Atlanta @ Ottawa GDT

Not since Antoine Vermette left have we seen such bare-chested imagery on the BoO.  So definitely we need to push that beefcake down the page.  

Sens to win 5-3 without Spezza or Volchenkov but also without piggy flu.

"Go Sens Go!" she says.

Trick or treat?

Sens against Atlanta this afternoon while the Leafs and Habs tussle tonight.

For the Sens, they need to take advantage of a Kovalchuk free Thrashers and get the 2pts - and no giving the opposition a free one.

Hope your candy bag is full tonight.

Friday, October 30, 2009

But can he make the headlines with his hockey equipment on?

Leafs @ Sabres

Tlusty hasn't been able to bring his AHL game to the big show and the Leafs always get killed in Buffalo.

Is it too much to ask for both things to change starting tonight? It's been over a year and no more naked pictures have surfaced from Tlusty, so I guess anything is possible.

I'm just sayin'.....

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Sens 3rd Period is starting...

This can be the thread.
I expect, with the score 3-0, that not many Sens fans will be in the mood to chat. Especially when "the guy you traded Heatley for" just missed on a breakaway against Mike Smith and his sub .900 %. Right DC?

So, lets talk about the Leafs instead with some news:

Macdonald and Stalberg sent down, Toskala and Tlusty are in. Phil Kessel ready to go Tuesday according to Wilson.

That's right. Kessel will be ready Tuesday in time for the Lighting and Mike Smith's soon to be above .900 save percentage.

Good Times!

Je m'appelle une douchebag

Not to excuse the stupid penalty that Ponikarovsky took before Ribeiro pulled his shit on Komisarek to make it a 5 on 3... but fuck... this guy really needs to be put on dive watch by the league.

Other than that the Leafs played really well. Two points would have been nice but hey, beggers can't be choosers. If they keep playing like this the points will come.

PS. Gustavsson is friggin awesome.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Leclaire out

Leclaire is pulled after the 1st for flu-like symptoms.  The panic that set through Sens Army about his ankle is unwarranted.  Phew.   I suppose we can assume other Sens will fall victim to the flu in the next couple of days.  Hey.... I'd rather see the team suffer the flu to start the season than suffer 7 big losses and the hugest-win-in-the-history-of-the-NHL against a West Coast team of tomato cans.

There's hilarity in delusion

This article by Mike Zeisberger has some gems that are sure to wet the pants of any level headed sports fan.

On Monster Jo's 1st win:

"it might be difficult for coach Ron Wilson to put anyone else in net for the next few days, weeks, even years, without creating a revolt within Leafs Nation."  

On what is known to future generations as "THE Save":

"His miraculous lunging stop off the Ducks' Eric Christensen early in the first period" 

(I may change his name to Jesus Jo' Monster after that one)

And representing Leaf Nation, commenter number 2: StuGatzFromMississauga @ 10:17 a.m.

"All I ever wanted was a goalie who can make a save to keep the team in every game. It looks like the monster will be that guy."

After one win against a West Coast bottom feeder StuGatz?  Really Stu?  

Karlsson to Bingo

Good column by Scanlan on the demotion. Importantly, he's already been given permission to play for Sweden in the World Juniors.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

And don't it feel good

Sorry Don. This is our day. No one gives a shit about the next Jani Hurme.

Now if you want to talk about a real goalie...


The Sens put out a weekly prospect update and included in Lehner's (2nd rnd pick this draft) weekly update it says "Received Fighting Major + Game Misconduct vs. Erie on Oct. 24".

He's a goalie.

Video here.

Good Morning Leaf Fans!

Things you woke up knowing:

1. You have a goaltender who can make a highlight reel stop once in a while.
2. Your PP is now ranked 2nd in the NHL.
3. Your PK is still last.
4. There are 73 games left.
5. Tomorrow it's back to wringing your hands in Dallas...

Forget all about that though. Today I just want you to enjoy the dead monkey lying on the floor behind you and be happy!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Ghost of truculence past

Alright. I'm sick of the Leafs jokes.
We need to kick some fucking ass tonight.

Like this guy used to.

Sometimes I feel like I'm beating a dead horse.

A co-worker (a Sens fan of course) comes up to me this morning and says "Hey! What's the difference between a triangle and the Leafs?"

"2 points" he says. "Hahahahahahahaaa!!!!!"

I slit his throat and pissed on his corpse.

Well, I imagined doing it.

I can't believe we missed it!

It's with great regret that I announce that we missed celebrating a truly magnificient achievement this weekend.

2000 days is a long time. It's when oil was $40 a barrel, Paul Martin was well in control of the government, Reagan was alive, and Raycroft and Toskala had the 6th and 7th best GAA in the league.

Free Countup Timers at


No seriously, it really is...

Leafs at Ducks: 10:00pm

Friday, October 23, 2009

This says it all.....

There you go Conrad....

Don't Fu¢k with DIDO!

Broken femur and shattered knee cap. NHL dreams put in question. A year of intense rehab with no guarantee you'll ever be as good a hockey player when it's complete.

And Chris DiDomenico says this:

"It was just a little setback. It's a part of the game. I can't look back and say if I would have done this, or if I wouldn't have chased the puck this wouldn't have happened. I have to overcome stuff like that. It's just a bump in the road."

Get this kid a stall at the ACC as soon as possible. He's already skating and doing 2 hours a day of rehab and has put back on 25 lbs since the surgery. He busted his femur in May. Incredible.

Monster Update: Gustavsson has recovered from the groin thingy and is taking part in full practices. There's rumblings he could get the Saturday start, but probably they will play it safe and put him in against the Ducks Monday.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Can I help with your publishing career THM?!!

I have another coaching tip for your Ron Wilson book. If I'm going to latch onto your talent I only have one request: No hotel room protests.

#9: Reduce the size of the ice.

Yes, Ron and his merry band of stressed out coaches took the Leafs to Mike Gartner's rinks out in Newmarket for a Leafs 3-on-3 tournament on small ice. Luke Schenn did get his first win of the year... never mind.

Dear Publisher....

Please accept for your review this draft chapter list for a manuscript I'm working on. I plan to title as follows:

Guide to Coaching in the NHL
by Ron Wilson
with foreword by Don Cherry.

 Chapter 1:
Blame the media

Chapter 2:
Blame the players

Chapter 3:
Protect the goalie

Chapter 4:
Throw goalie under bus

Chapter 5:
Play tennis to hone hockey skills

Chapter 6:
Cross fingers & wait for Phil Kessel sans Savard

Chapter 7:
Set up MMA challenge ladder in practice 

Chapter 8:
When to face reality

When selecting the editor, I would be most appreciative if you avoided Damien Cox or Steve Simmons.

Everything completely normal here at MLSE...

This from the Toronto Star today:

Wilson has seen his clubs battle out of early season holes before. Twice he has been behind the bench of teams that won one game or less of their first 10 and still managed to claw their way back into the playoffs.

One was the 1996-97 Anaheim team, but that was a little skewed because they started the season without Paul Kariya, then took off when he returned to the lineup.

The other was a workmanlike, pre-Joe Thornton San Jose squad in 2003-04 led by Patrick Marleau and former Leaf Alyn McCauley. It won only two of its 14 games and three of its first 19 but still managed to top the Pacific Division and make it to the conference final.

Ahhhh. So this is all destiny!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Carkner signing

Murray announces a 2yr 1way contract for $700k per.
He was to be a UFA at the end of the season.

Update: There's a reason her blog isn't called The Universal Optimist.

Double double face punching contest winner.

Rumours a swirlin that this thoroughbred is available.
I've been dying to see this guy in a Leafs jersey since he first came into the league.

Oh wait. It was a Garrioch rumour.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Grrrrrr.... err, meow? FML.

Gustavsson in full gear again.

And hey, did anyone notice we're only 13 points out of first place?

Fuck my life.

Do it for the kids

To see the ACC filled with these bags and boo's raining down on the Leaf players, Wilson, and Burke - it would just swell my heart. All that love for the kids.

3 more wins next year!

This post, noticed by Antro, needs it's own post.
Except they didn't improve: they played historically bad hockey for seven games, then played approximately .420 hockey for the next 157 games.

Spread the love. And the ice time.

As we Sens fans all know, and former Sens players wearing #15 don't, ice time is a good indicator of the skill and commitment of the members of a team. While thugs and one dimensional players serve less than 10 minutes a game, consistency and effort is rewarded.

Senators coach Cory Clouston has done a good job of spreading the workload around this season. Kuba (who’s played only one game), Phillips and Volchenkov are the only players averaging more than 20 minutes of ice-time a game with Phillips at 21:01 and Volchenkov and Kuba at 20:56. Nine other players have averaged between 17 and 20 minutes a game. Seven others are between 10 and 14 minutes.

Interestingly, while Dany "I want 30 minutes a game" Heatley was gliding around an ice rink in a city where hockey doesn't belong, the Thrashers visited a guy who gets zero minutes on the ice.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

5 on 3 PK

Chris Neil in the box first. Joining him mere seconds later: Chris Phillips.

It's a 5 on 3 penalty kill.

On the ice for the Sens:   Anton Volchenkov, Chris Campoli and.... guess who.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

GDT: Kovlev goes home & Top meets bottom.

Two separate games this weekend with different degrees of significance.

First up:  Leafs v. Rangers

(click image for larger version)

Pretty simple here on this one.  It's top & bottom.  We've all known Leafs to be the bottom over the years, except when considering their fans who take it from their team year after year. The surprisingly first place Rangers (is Redden being benched?) take on the lowly bottom dwellers of Toronto at home.

Will Ol' MacDonald become the latest team savior?  Could this be the first win of the year for the blues?  Or will it be different goalies, same result?    

Today's lineup here.  Reimer in net in the 3rd.

Second match:  Sens @ Habs.

Kovi goes home.  It's sure to be an emotional night for AK27, but will it be a dismal affair for the 10th placed Sens with "lazy Alex" or will les Habs fans get look back at the jaw popping performance of "l'artiste" taking it to their 2-4-0 team.     Sens fans are, obviously, hoping for the latter as this is a 4 point game in the North East.  

Today's lineup here

Friday, October 16, 2009

74 Words that will make Leaf fans happy.

Injured winger Phil Kessel (shoulder) looked tremendous while working out at full speed with the team today. This was Kessel's second practice, but he was right up to tempo in terms of skating and shooting

There's been plenty of speculation the past two days that Kessel is well ahead of the original projected return of mid-November. Kessel says he has a return date "circled in his mind," but wouldn't say what the date was.

I had a disclaimer here but removed it. Screw it. I like the predictability, have at it...

A few thoughts before I shut the laptop and head downstairs for a beer...

1. Would anybody who barked that Kessel only succeeded last season because of his Bruins line-mates now think that maybe it's the Bruins that miss him? So far Krejci with two assists... Boston fans wondering if the money went to the right guy by now?

2. Who agrees that Ottawa has a ridiculously easy schedule until mid-November? I see only a few games against teams that made the playoffs last year. Best continue to take advantage. Mid November through December looks a hell of a lot tougher.

3. Anybody actually think the Leafs will win Saturday night against the Rangers? I don't. Which leaves a whole week for the media and fan hyper-tension to grow. It may be the longest 7 days some of the newer Leafs have ever experienced.

4. Four Leaf goaltenders and not one has shown they can be an NHL #1 goaltender this season. Phil, you better score a shitload of goals son!

We aren't the Leafs...

Vous descendez demain.
Nice touch on the intro.
HT FourHabFans

Cheer up Leaf fans

Always look on the bright side of life.

NHL caves to Leaf pressure.

Coming off the wire....


Toronto Maple Leafs pleased with NHL Rule Changes

President and General Manager Brian Bruke announced today that the Toronto Maple Leafs were pleased with the direction the NHL is going to introduce more scoring into the game.

"This is best for the game and for our fans. While we are obviously excited about the introduction of tennis balls to the game and expect our small, soft forwards to be able to finally put something in the net, we are concerned about the bouncing ball around our own net. Our coach, Ron Wilson, has had the team practicing with tennis balls for some time, as is obvious from our play with the old style rubber puck."

Tracking Post update









Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Perfect Game.

Don called it.

"This is a game I'm watching for the Sens to come out strong."

Let's break down the perfection:

Primary scoring:  

Michalek with a hattie, 2 shorthanded, 1 PPG.  Assists from Alfie, Spezza, Ruutu, & Volchenkov.

Kovalev with his second.  Assists from Alfie (twice) and Spezza.

Secondary scoring:

Foligno.  Assists from Phillips & A-Train

Picard.  Assists from Ruutu & Kelly.

Ruutu.  Assists from Kelly & Karlsson.

At least one each of EV, SH, PP goals.



SV%: .941

Truculence & Beligerence

Chris Neil:  5 for fighting (Konopka), 2+2+2 min for roughing, 10 for misconduct.  

Matt Carkner:  5 for fighting (Downie),

Anton Volchenkov:  2 for roughting.

Chris Phillips :  5 for fighting (Konopka) [check here]

Pizza?  Fuck yeah.

Heatley?  Fuck you.

"Oh," Leaf fans will say, "it was only Tampa!"  

Yeah, and 7-1 is how you're supposed to play a team like Tampa.

Sens / Lightning

This is a game I'm watching for the Sens to come out strong. They need to view the games against the teams expected to fight for the last few playoff spots as 4pt games. They won them against the Leafs, Isle, and Thrashers and need to keep it going against this improved Tampa team.

Offensively we been more focussed on Kovalev's first goal than Spezza's. I think the latter is more important to the club. Brent Wallace's tweet a few minutes ago made me feel better about it though:
In 07-08 Spezza went goaless in his 1st 7 games but he went on to record his best offensive season of his career. 34 goals and 92 pts

The Sens haven't had success on the PP but have been saved by a good PK. Tampa has too many weapons up front to tempt fate too many times shorthanded. Make that your key to victory.

UPDATE: Be sure to go over the live blog with DHS and friends!


Should he stay or should he go?

Low blow

Mirtle, in interviewing the authors of one of the many 'Why the Leafs Suck' books on the market, says the following:
That doesn't always happen — guys like Chris Phillips and Patrik Stefan were first overall picks, so if you tank and that's the year you bottom out...

I know Phillips isn't a franchise player but Patrik Stefan bad? Scanning the draft that year is interesting. Phillips has had one of the best careers of any of the first round picks (Briere would be the other guy) but some others taken that year - with of BoO connections:
56 NY Islanders Zdeno Chara
179 Tampa Bay Pavel Kubina
204 Toronto Tomas Kaberle
239 Ottawa Sami Salo

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Steve Moore sings a happy tune

'Col' 4-1 and 1-4 All-leaf-fans-who-thought-this-would-break-the-goose-egg.

Ok, lame, but it distracts from this:

I kept it small so the eyes don't burn so much.

I'm actually feeling bad for the Leaf bloggers here.  I mean, we have a well founded, renewed sense of optimism after a year and  half of panic and uncertainty.   But man, you guys are having it rough.  Real, real bad. I mean real bad.

Ok, this is the only time I'm ever going to do something like this, but think of it as a hand up before kicking you in your pre-op groin.

If Obama gets the Peace Prize for what he's done, I get it next year for this.

Ted Kennedy night or not, same old start...

It's the 1st intermission. Different goaltender and a few new faces up front, but same old start. Late in the first the Avs strike for two goals and the Leafs go into the locker room showered in a chorus of booing.

I have to find a positive in this game. Something.
This is what I have:

Tyler Bozak is good at faceoffs.

If the Leafs tie it up or take the lead by the 2nd intermission, I'll get back into my street clothes, start up the car and drive to the Wheat Sheaf.

Take that.

And once he resigns in Atlanta?

My post in July after Nash re-upped in Columbus:
Reality's a bitch Leaf fans. Kovalchuk or bust!

PPP today:
To get the team's expenditures on their top six forwards up to the same percentage the Maple Leafs would have to invest another $4M on top of that to get close. Now if only there was a player worth that kind of coin...

And the answer to the question...
'Oh well. We'll sign Savard and reunite him with Kessel! The truculence experiment was a failure anyway!'


Alterations for tonight's game:

INCOMING: Tyler Bozak, James Reimer, Victor Stalberg.
OUTGOING: Nik Hagman, Vesa Toskala, Matt Stajan.

Toskala suffered an injury last night, allegedly. A commenter at The Star wonders of it's rubber poisoning?

Reimer? Hardly know her.


That big red button over there...

Fire Wilson, hire Gretzky!
Waive Toskala.
Put Schenn in the minors.
Demote Blake.

God bless Damien Cox.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Turkey Day Thread: Sens v. Pens

It's only fitting that on Canadian Thanksgiving Day, the NHL is feeding the Ottawa Senators a bird. Ok, so it's not the traditional turkey, but Penguin must be considered a gourmet offering in these parts.

Last night's freeze warning from The Weather Network failed to materialize so the Penguins shouldn't get too comfortable.  

Tonight will be the first significant test for the Ottawa Senators and their new found ability to actually beat the opposing team.  I'm not expecting a total dominating victory or, let's be realistic, a win.  It'll be nice, but as long as it's kept respectable and the Pens are made to really work to win, we'll be in a happy place at the end of it.

Leclaire will get the start and his value will be truly tested with Crosby-Malkin on the ice at the same time as Carkner-Campoli or Eriksson-Picard.  Fortunately the Sens have last change tonight, but expect the ice time for these guys to be substantially lower than their 18:02 (Karlsson) and 17:51 (Carkner) ice time averages thus far.

This one is going to OT.  2-2.   Crosby with the SO winner*

*I reserve this asterisk for future use in the thread.

Stalberg practices, Toskala to start against Rangers.

Hopefully Stalberg will realize he's in the NHL now and will use his breakneck speed, to, well, not get his own neck broken. Sadly, he's not likely to play tonight, but Vesa gets his coaches vote of confidence. Not because Wilson thinks he's a good goaltender. Can't be. He has eyes like the rest of us. So I'm hoping this move is to teach is team a valuable lesson now while it's still early - PLAY BETTER and TAKE RESPONSIBILTY. Even teams with average tenders can win games with stingy play and hard work.

Question is, can the Leafs do this for 3 periods? We'll see.

I just hope Rosehill gets a game on a top 2 line. He earned it. What a gem this guy has turned out to be.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

By the numbers

4 Games played by Ottawa
Games won by Ottawa
0.750 Ottawa's point percentage

4 Games played by Toronto
Games won by Toronto
Toronto's point percentage

6 Point percentage ratio: Ottawa/Toronto

2 The number of goals scored by Mike Fisher in 3 games this year.

68 The percentage of faceoff wins by Mike Fisher (coincidentally, that's twice the faceoff win percentage of my g/f in her first ever hockey game tonight).

1 Number of goals scored tonight by Kovalev (it's a start!).

+3 - Matt Carkner's +/-

-5 Francois Beauchemin's +/-

10 Number of shots by Jason Blake
0 Number of points by Jason Blake

4.97 Vesa Toskala's current GAA

And the best for last:

15 Number of players on the Maple Leafs who have scored fewer goals than Matt Carkner.