15 March 2007

California girls and really late recap comments

Remember that game a few days ago in which the Penguins almost had a regulation win but instead decided to give Sidney some practice with the shootouts? Here are a few (very late) thoughts:

-What an incredible game. Mario coming out and saying his 15 words was all that the fans needed. Of course, he had to wait five minutes before he could speak because of the crowd. Great moment.

-Fantastic energy throughout the game, the Penguins were playing right up with the Sabres. They fought hard, had great physicality, and the crowd was unbelievable. Not a lot of penalities called, and none in the first. The Pens' power play is ranked 20th at 81.3%. The Sabres are 30-2-0 when they score a power play goal, according to OLNUSUS. Well, they were....now they're 30-3-0.

-Was it just me or did both goalies venture out quite a bit? Miller was right in the middle of the play more often than not, and Fleury almost got trapped behind the net a few times. Way to give me a heart attack, Fleur. Speaking of goalies and the Flower, his robbery on Vanek was incredible, and the shot of him after all smiles was great. He's been working on his glove this year and it really shows. His posture also seemed a little different, more upright and less crouched for the butterfly snap. Could be the effect of the charged atmosphere and extra confidence or new training? His last round of saves during the tail end of the 1st was incredible. I don't know how he got some of those.

-All the boys were spectacular, but the Talbot, Roberts, Armstrong line was particularly pumped. Petro was also a surprisingly spry little dude during the game, sliding in where he needed to be, and Scuderi I was not overall impressed with. He seemed ready for the game, but missed some good passes and didn't seem too aware of some of the plays happening. Malkin was trying (and what an awful penalty in the third...what was he thinking?), and showed some of his smooth glide on the ice. He's been a little less impressive lately...maybe I'm just used to the way he started off the season and this quiet time is making me anxious?

-Some great signs at the game. My favorites? 'Vezina for Mario' and 'If you build it, Stanley will come'. The best one of the night involved the pregame skate with Recchi and Ruutu chatting and laughing at one that said, 'Sidney will you marry my mom?'.

-Nice interview pieces during the intermisons. I keep forgetting how huge Mario is compared to the wee folk of the outside world...he looked great, though. Happy, relaxed...although his cheerful talk about Bettman made me gag a little. The Roberts taped interview was pretty good as well, he's starting to grow on me (funny comments at the end!). Classic interview with Bettman, though, just for the Freudian Slip that happened by one of the announcers (apologies, I forget which), 'I know that you often deflect blame' and 'I'm just glad that you don't have announcers summariliy excecuted'. Bettman makes my skin crawl, but if he helped to keep the Penguins in Pittsburgh, I'll forget that he's got the class of a used car salesman for now.

-Remember when the idea of being disappointed over a shootout win was unheard of? I love it when the Pens win.


Injuries are really getting the Oilers, who haven't won since Smytty left and are now suffering from a bout of the flu in addition to a plethora of injuries. The Caps are still sliding (forgot this game was on...oops. Too much 'The Black Donnollys' on nbc.com)...and the Senators are still kicking ass. Bastards. The Devils also won tonight, ensuring that they can continue to laugh at the Penguins from the top of the division.

In more Penguins news, Mario no longer plans to sell. Huh. Apparently he just decided that if you want something done right, you do it yourself. Good for him.


On a different note, since I woke up with an urge to move to California (this might be because of the cold, sleety rain and ever-present clouds right now), I have decided to explore what sort of hockey atmosphere California has to offer. I realized that I don't actually know too much about the history of the Kings, Sharks and Ducks, and while none of them are particularly affecting the Penguins right now, it is always good to learn and expand knowledge about hockey. This being said, I will post an abridged history of each team over the next few days, and try to learn as much as I can about them. Real fans of said teams, please feel free to correct me when I get something wrong. Please.

Penguins play the Habs at 7:30 tomorrow. Go Pens!


Teebz said...

The Devils game was even better than the Barney Rubble Hairpieces game. And good for Thibault on the shutout. It looks like he may finally be getting back on track.

As for Cali, there's no hockey atmosphere unless you're in an arena. No one sits in bars and talks about it, from my experience. Maybe I was just in the wrong places, but it's not like Detroit or Toronto or Pittsburgh.

Ellie said...

i love it when the pens win too : )

and i always wake up with an urge to move to california. especially today when we got pounded with a foot of snow. it was 60 degrees on wednesday!

did you see sid's goal tonight? incredible!

Elly said...

Teebz: It was a great game, but I'm still not sure if I'm going to cuddle up to T-bo yet. He has been looking a bit better as of late, though.

Ellie: Ugh, I know! I looked out my window this morning and another foot of snow is not what I wanted to see.

Classic Sidney. That kid is amazing.