Archive for the ‘NHL’ Category

Anything Goes in Pens/Flyers Rivalry

January 12, 2010

Including, it seems, FSN Pittsburgh deep-sixing damning videos until after the official review in Toronto is concluded:

http://awfulannouncing.blogspot.com/2010/01/fsn-pittsburgh-hides-goal-from.html

Of course FSN Pittsburgh can simply claim they didn’t discover the footage from that camera angle until it was too late.  I wouldn’t give good odds to anyone in Philadelphia believing that explanation, but its probably what their cover story will be.  Wow.

***UPDATE*** I should have read the Pittsburgh Post Gazette before blogging.  Seems that FSN Pittsburgh has taken another tack; blame a fall guy:

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10012/1027693-100.stm

Advertisements

Wrong on So Many Levels

November 11, 2009

And yet it makes a ton of sense too:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/11/sports/hockey/11blades.html?th&emc=th

Unfortunately I don’t get the CBC on my cable system this far south of the border. Mostly I regret that during the early rounds of the Stanley Cup Playoffs or when I could go for some curling. But this sounds like it would be a blast to see!

Obama Administration Hates Hockey?

September 8, 2009

At the very least I don’t think the logistical concerns of the National Hockey League were considered in the below ruling:

http://www.vancouversun.com/sports/Hockey+Canadian+teams+scramble+bans+charter+flights/1964225/story.html

That is going to make it very difficult for Canadian teams (Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa, Edmonton, Calgary, and Vancouver) to proceed through road trips in the United States during the season. I guess when they play a swing through the Eastern Seaboard (Boston, metro New York, Philly, Washington) they could use trains while sending the charter home and then come back for the last city. They could fly commercial some. When there are a couple off days between games on the road I guess they could have the charter leave road city A, fly to the nearest Canadian airport for a touch and go, then on to road city B. But that is obviously a severe pain in the ass. Hopefully something more reasonable is worked out.

NFL Goes to SCOTUS With Sherman Exemption Request

July 21, 2009

If successful, writes Lester Munson, they could radically re-wire the landscape of major American professional sports:

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/columns/story?columnist=munson_lester&id=4336261

I am no legal expert to be sure, but I think on a logical level one can make a substantial argument that the leagues are single entities.  I think its a bad thing if SCOTUS rules that way; players and fans alike will likely get the fuzzy end of the lollipop in a number of ways.  But, technically speaking, I think the NFL has a case.

Possible Stanley Cup Final Schedule Alteration

May 25, 2009

If the Pens and Wings close their series out Tuesday and Wednesday as is possible, the Stanley Cup Finals will likely start on Saturday May 30th rather than wait for Friday June 5th as was originally planned:

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/playoffs/2009/news?id=4203658

Of course, the Pens have not been able the past 2 seasons to close out a series on their first opportunity to do so and Game 5 in the East would not be until Friday the 29th so that would make this discussion moot.  Obviously, we’ll see what happens.

Stanley Cup Conference Semi Pairings Official

April 28, 2009

The NHL has not announced a complete schedule, but we do know the pairings for the 2nd round of the playoffs.  In the East it will be 6. Carolina v 1. Boston and 4. Pittsburgh v 2. Washington.  In the West it will be 8. Anaheim v 2. Detroit and 4. Chicago v 3. Vancouver.  Game 1 action will be Thursday and Friday of this week.  Look for the Canucks to start on Thursday so that Game 2 can be lined up for Hockey Night in Canada Saturday night.  Therefor the Detroit series to start Friday with Game 2 Sunday, perhaps being the NBC game.  Or for the two East series to be on NBC both days this weekend.  Certainly the Pens/Caps series will get the full maximum coverage of all 7 games being on Versus or NBC.  However exactly they write the schedule it should be fun playoff hockey.  Go Pens!

Bring On The Flyers!

April 12, 2009

The NHL regular season is over and the lineup is set for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, a full 2 month process that will begin Wednesday.  I just checked nhl.com and the full schedule of games hasn’t been released yet, but we do know the pairings:

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Series ‘A’ – #1 Boston Bruins vs. #8 Montreal Canadiens
Series ‘B’ – #2 Washington Capitals vs. #7 New York Rangers
Series ‘C‘ – #3 New Jersey Devils vs. #6 Carolina Hurricanes
Series ‘D’ – #4 Pittsburgh Penguins vs. #5 Philadelphia Flyers

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Series ‘E’ – #1 San Jose Sharks vs. #8 Anaheim Ducks
Series ‘F’ – #2 Detroit Red Wings vs. #7 Columbus Blue Jackets
Series ‘G’ – #3 Vancouver Canucks vs. #6 St. Louis Blues
Series ‘H’ – #4 Chicago Blackhawks vs. #5 Calgary Flames

The Flyers losing today to the Rangers allowed the Pens to have home ice advantage in the 1st round of the playoffs, though frankly that was not something I was worried about one way or the other.  Nice to have I guess but the winning team in NHL Playoff games doesn’t always seem to have much correlation to who was at home.  Goaltending, avoiding dumb mistakes, and special teams usually go a long way in settling these things.  Its some interesting matchups; seeing Bruins v Canadiens is giving me flashbacks to the old Adams Division.  For that matter, Capitals v Rangers and Penguins v Flyers harkens back to the old Patrick Division days.  How many times have the Devils and Hurricanes met in the playoffs?  I could be off, but I think its just about every time the Hurricanes have made the playoffs this decade.  Out west its nice to see the Columbus Blue Jackets make postseason play for the first time ever, though slipping to the 7th seed and therefor having to play the Red Wings is no bargain.  Still, history suggests Detroit can sometimes be upset in the 1st round.  I think out West I will predict the favored seed to win every series save #5 Calgary with Mika Kiprisoff in net upsets Chicago.  In the East I am not sold on the Bruins but Montreal has been in a bit of a free-fall the past few weeks, so I’ll take Boston.  I look for the Rangers with Henrik Lundquist to pull the upset over the Capitals and for the Hurricanes to upset free-falling New Jersey.  Of course I’ll take the Pens to beat the F**ers from Philadelphia.  Frankly, if Kerry Price catches fire I can easily see Montreal upsetting Boston, which would leave the winner of the Pennslyvania series the highest seed left in the East if I’m right about New York and Carolina.  Should be fun in any event.  Time to lace up the skates and have at it!

Crosby To Skip NHL All-Star Game

January 22, 2009

This weekend in Montreal in order to rest his knee that recently forced him to miss a game against Anaheim, though he did subsequently play in games against the Rangers and Hurricanes.  The NHL cannot be thrilled, as he is the face of a league that has been struggling to gain traction in the US national consciousness the past decade or so.  For that reason he probably should’ve gone ahead and played as, like I said above, the knee was okay enough to let him play the last two games for the Penguins.  However, it is undeniably best for the Pens that he not play, but rather use this week off to get fully healed, or try to, so he can be an asset for the team the last 2.5 months of the season.  Given their recent slump, they will have to do some work in order to make the playoffs, work that would get much harder if they don’t have #87, or don’t have him firing on all cylinders.

Stanley Cup Finals Schedule

May 19, 2008

Have not found a firm table, but postgame article on the Wings game refers to it being a Saturday-Monday-Wednesday pattern, and Versus announced the first two games are this Saturday and Monday nights.  Series should shift to NBC with Game 3 in Pittsburgh and start times are generally in the rough 8-8:30 range.  So that would project to the following:

Game 1 Saturday May 24th in Detroit

Game 2 Monday May 26th in Detroit

Game 3 Wednesday May 28th in Pittsburgh

Game 4 Saturday May 31st in Pittsburgh

Game 5 Monday June 2nd in Detroit

Game 6 Wednesday June 4th in Pittsburgh

Game 7 Saturday June 7th in Detroit.

Bring on the Wings!

May 19, 2008

It took them longer than they probably hoped when they jumped out to the 3-0 lead, but the Red Wings finally close out Dallas in Game 6 by a 4-1 score to claim The Campbell Bowl and a spot opposite Pittsburgh in the Stanley Cup Finals.  Game 1 will be in Detroit Saturday night on Versus.

It should be an interesting matchup.  As is always the case, the wildcard factor is the goaltending.  Fleury has been playing very solid for the Pens, as has Chris Osgood for the Wings.  Detroit fans will attest to the fact that Osgood can have bouts of mediocrity (Detroit does have Dominick Hasek on the bench if needed).  The Wings have more experience, though this team is not as old as they were most of the past decade and have plenty of younger guys like Franzen and Zetterburg and Datsuyk (my apologies if I butchered any name spelling there).  Of course the Pens are a young team, but they do have some Stanley Cup experience from the likes of Petr Sykora.

For what it is worth, the Pittsburgh Steelers won their last Super Bowl in Detroit, and now the Penguins will be trying to win a title against Detroit.  If they succeed, I will be forced to assume that Tigers v Pirates World Series is not far off 🙂