Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Blake wasn't my first or even third choice, but whatever. It's not about me, it's about who the team feels can best lead them overtly and argue calls on the ice. It's also about who stepped it up the most at camp. Your winners are Blake, Boyle and Joe.
People are sort of freaked out.
Blake? BLAKE? OMGWHYBLAKEOMGHESSOOLDOMG.
Yeah, ok, so maybe he's only got a season or two left in him. So what? If the locker room is behind him and the staff is behind him, who cares?
But he's not the best player on the ice!
Nope. He's not. He doesn't need to be.
But he didn't earn it!
Well, apparently, he did or else he wouldn't have it.
Mina suggests that Blake my have a great locker room presence we know nothing about. YOU don't have to like the choice, but understand that he was chosen for a reason, even if it seems inexplicable right now.
The reaction to Joe is a mix of "Why did he get the A back?!" and "Why doesn't he have the C?!" Mina and I are both firm believers in the idea that your captain is not necessarily the best man on the ice (see above).
Joe WAS a Captain before, and I think he's the type of guy who does better in a "secondary" leadership roll. The C seemed to hurt him more than it helped, and besides, as Mina said, he can still carry the team even without a fancy letter.It can still be "Joe's team." That based on the way you play and how you are in the locker room, not on a letter.
But why give Joe back the A and not give Patty back the C?
Because quite possibly, somewhere along the lines in discussions we were and never likely will be privy to, it was decided that it wasn't going back to Patty. That's all. He's still a Shark and still a leader even without the letter. That much has even been said publicly and I don't think it's just lip service. Not this year.
Boyle, well, Boyle probably is the luckiest out of the bunch. Since most of us figured he was going to get the C, him getting the A is alright.Though some people are left wonder if this means there will be yet another fight for the C when Blake retires, but I'm going to worry about that when the time comes.
Monday, September 28, 2009
Even from the back, Drew and Randy are the best looking announcing crew in hockey.
I don't know what everyone else is thinking. Patty totally has a little captain in him.
If he makes the team, Not Kyle McLaren could be in the running to be a favorite of mine. I love guys with a mouse under their eye in their official photo. See also: Mitchell, Torrey.
It was nice to see Joe having a super fun time. I dig the crazy Jack-Nicolson-in-The-Shining smile.
This was the best Griess looked all night: leaving the ice for a delayed penalty. /rimshot
Staubitz looked particularly pleased at the ovation he got during the intros. Two words: Jordan Tootoo. hee
My favorite part about looking at hockey photos is the awkward expressions on everyone's faces. Doug Murray = GOAL SCORER (and awkward)
MOAR AWKWARD Dandenault style.
MCGINN! I <3 YOU!! If he makes the team, I'm seriously considering a McGinn jersey. How can you not love that face?
Dude! When did Dan Boyle get sooo old. I mean I know some of these guys are young, but srsly.
This one is for you TCY. My favorite thing about Sexsmith is how he leaned against the goal all pimpstyle when the puck was in the other end.
OMG BUTTERFLY GOALIE. LOOK LOOK!! POST TO POST MOVEMENT. Lrn 2 ply Griess!
See look guy, we can have a Holmstrom too. Crashing the net: Staubitz style.
Run Short, Fat, Russian, Run! Don't let the zebra beat you!
Dear god, these kids are so little. I think I saw Not Not Graham Mink in my econ class last week.
AfroPuff, I love you but Joslin is starting to freak me out a little. That unfocused stare is just weird.
LOL Rob Blake looks like Popeye here! *insert old guy joke here*
The rest of the pictures can be found here.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
No, I’m not talking about Kwanzaa! I’m talking about the few days before the start of the NHL season. Every year hockey fans’ heart is filled with hope and visions of their team winning the Stanley Cup run through their heads. Despite obvious setbacks, off-season drama, court room struggles, etc. most fans continue to hope and believe. Penguins’ fans hope to win the Cup again and Islanders fans believe that Tavares will save the day and get them the Cup this year. Calgary fans hope that their super-charged defense will get them over the hump and Phoenix fans hope that a new coach will help the team ignore the legal brouhaha and win the Cup.
And then there are Sharks fans (sigh.) My teal brethren. We hope no matter what. We hope that Marleau will prove the nay-sayers wrong. We hope that Thornton will be the monster in the post-season we know he can be. We hope the Heatley drama was really just the Canadian Press and that his douche-ness was exaggerated. We hope that Nabby will find his way (and close his 5-hole.) We hope that Joslin somehow gets AfroPuffs phone number and calls her and asks her out on a date. We hope that Murray keeps getting hat tricks. We hope that the Sharks will make it past the first AND second round and into the finals. We hope that the injury bug stays the hell away from our team this season. We hope that Todd has an amazing second season as the Sharks coach. We hope that Drew, Randy, Dan and Jamie will be awesome (again.) We hope that our mix of veterans + rookies + the massive disappointment of last year = the Stanley Cup.
So much hope. But unfortunately hope does not win hockey games or the Stanley Cup. Don’t get me wrong, having supportive fans definitely helps, but it’s up to our boys in the teal to bring it home. So please boys – even though the Couch Tarts will support you no matter what – we’ve been good (well, at least good enough) girls this year so please bring us the cup…
Friday, September 25, 2009
I think of all the summer moves, the (re)signing of Kent Huskins' is one that registered on everyone mind boggle radar. He got 1.7 mil and we haven't even seen the dude play as a Shark. I long ago gave up trying to understand the moves GMs make because, well, to be quite honest they don't seem to follow the same logic I would in their transactions. Now, much of this is because I only have the vaguest idea of what being a GM takes, (Look good in a suit. Tan early and often), whereas Doug Wilson and other GMs actually do this for a living. I suspect their insight into the job is somewhat better than mine.
The hope is that a less than stellar off season does not a bad regular (or post) season make. He was out for awhile and maybe it's just taking him some time to get back into the wing of things. Maybe he's still tentative and doesn't want to risk re-injuring himself this early. Maybe it's a combo of that and not quite being comfortable with the Sharks system yet. This is what I tell myself, anyway, because good or bad, he's here and all I can do is hope he works out.
Working the Corners provides us with more insight into the Huskinsville saga. It's not so much a saga as a slightly interesting conversation one wouldn't mind over hearing at lunch.
This video on Puck Daddy is fantastic. Hockey fans are different. 'Nuff said.
Between this guy being signed and snagging Malhotra for pennies (700K reported to be the deal) Doug Wilson has gone from a weak GM to the best GM ever once again in the mind of some fans. I think the 180 is pretty funny, personally. Similar to the one that happened when Heatley became a Shark. I can't decide if this means that we're a fickle, or accepting, lot.
Kinda of a bummer of a preseason. 2 wins and 3 losses, including one in OT where the Sharks had the lead going into the 3rd.Not to sure if that really means anything though. And as Mina likes to remind me, the year the Sharks were beasts in the preseason they started the season with like 10 losses.
This image may not have brought luck during the playoffs, but I like it just the same. It also summarizes my feeling towards the Ducks quite well.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Puck Daddy lists the Vegas odds for NHL teams to make the playoffs this year. I'm not a betting (wo)man, but if I were, I'm sure this would be kind of exciting.
Fools and Sages has a mathtastical break down of special teams.
I've been working on a fun little side project with a few fellow artist bloggers, and I'd love to get some more folks participating. The idea is simple: Do your own interpretation of this piece by Francis Bacon using an NHL figurehead. All media are accepted. If you're photoshoper, do it in photoshop. If you like watercolor, do it in that. Me? I'm painting mine with acrylics. (pics here)
I chose Bettman, but other folks are doing Balsillie (who isn't a figurehead but is in the news a bunch) and potentially Burke. I want to keep it to Bettman or the GMs, preferably recognizable ones, but really, feel free to do whatever.
This is NOT a competition. There are no prizes. It's just for fun.
If you want to participate, let me know. (email off to the side of the blog. Scroll down a tad). It'd be cool to post a gallery of these.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
The D looked like doggy poo. Terrible. It just wasn't clicking.
HI NOTE! tried to fight, and was only half successful. But that's ok because Fraizer McLaren was more than willing to give a clinic on how to beat the crap out of some guy, and look mean doing it.
Clowe nearly had this super awesome behind swirly spinning blind shot at the net goal, but it BARELY missed.
McGinn is awesome. All love McGinn!
Patty looked good too. And he got a nice round of applause from the crowd several times. SJ still loves Patrick Marleau.
Jody Shelley went to start a fight and all he got was 2 minutes for instigating, 5 for fighting, a 10 min misconduct and a game misconduct. Also included was a crappy t-shirt.
Stalock looked good, and the team looked much more confident in front of him. It's like they can sense when the goalie's mind is weak. Fin think?
It was nice when the Sharks finally decided to play with about 5 minutes left. They looked pretty good then.
Patty, JoePa and Blake all had an A on their jerseys.
Ehrhoff got a goal and an assist. Where was this Ehrhoff when we had him and how do the Canucks get him to finally realize where he net is? Did they give him a better map? Install GPS? I didn't boo him when he got a star, and I'm disappointed people did. He was traded. He didn't leave us, we told him to go. Don't boo the man. He kinda had a smirk when he heard it. Fans did, however, cheer him when his name was announced for the starting line up. That was nice.
The stat sheet suffered from lack of name fail. We had NEARLY everyone on the Canucks shoved on there (Ehrhoff was a noted exception, though he did play and now has the number 5) and maybe half the Sharks roster. And it wasn't the half that was playing.
But you know what?
It's the preseason. Try again tomorrow, boys!
Despite being a season ticket holder only event, Teal and White has become quite popular. Lines snake around the Tank to get in long before the doors open and nearly everyone goes in with a game plan for autograph lines and ice skating. Standing outside,waiting for the doors to open and the fans to flood in and fill the bottom of the Tank, I find it mind boggling that people still don't think hockey has a home in my state. Thousands stand outside, waiting to get in to see an exhibition game from a team that laid a fat egg in the playoffs. We WANT hockey. Not only that, we wants Sharks hockey. It's been too long.
The fun stuff:
I never sit downstairs during the regular season, so getting to sit in the rich seats if pretty awesome. I like the view from upstairs, but the novelty of seats 13 rows up from the glass hasn't worn off for me yet. Meeting the players is awesome, especially when one of them gives Afro the eye, (she's available, Joslin!), but I really come for the game. It's so much fun to be able to watch the players just have fun out on the ice. Sure, Teal is trying to beat White and vice versa, but it's an exhibition game. Just a scrimmage. The rookies may be trying to impress, but the veterans are out there having a blast.
I chose team Teal this year, mostly because it had Ryane Clowe. Afro took team White, and Mina was assigned Teal, though none of us really cared. We cheered for all the goals, no matter who scored them.
Sexsmith was a beast and kept Teal down to 1 goal, giving White the win. Then the shootout came. I don't know what happened, but the Sexywall feel and Teal blew White out of the water in the shootout. Fans select the players for the shootout and I think the best moment was when someone selected Brad Staubitz. He looked absolutely shocked & repaid the fan by scoring a goal. Nichol was selected and skated over and bear hugged his fan, who were assuming had been a long time admirer. Jody Shelley surprised us all by scoring a sick shoot out goal. Randy Hahn suggested the coaches take this into consideration.
Randy and Drew, stars in their own right, announced the lineups for each of the teams. They also showed us they were in regular season form by riffing and rambling in the way that only they can.
Ok, enough rambling there. Tonight's HOCKEY! (You'll have to wait for the regular season for game day art.)
Sharks took last night's game against LA, (in Ontario "what's that smell?" California. No seriously. Drive down 10 or 60 and tell me it doesn't smell weird sometimes. The Santa Ana winds do this area no favors. I'm going to get letters, aren't I?), in the shoot out. Tonight, they're back up the the Bay Area to face the Canucks. If past pre season games are any indicator, this game will be chippy at best and nose breaking at worst. I don't know what it is, but the Canucks and Sharks don't get along well in the pre season. Now that there are more than a few former Sharks on the team, I suspect things will be just a little bit awkward once the puck drops.
7:30 PM. The Teal Mile comes back to life tonight.
Should be awesome. Go Sharks!
Monday, September 14, 2009
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Doug Wilson went from a GM people had lost faith in to OMGWELOVEDOUGWILSON over night. I'm just...boggled.
Floored, may be a better word.
Ignoring all other issues, Heatley is not the savior of the team. A decent addition, to be sure, but he doesn't solve all our problems. We lack depth, for one thing and I'm not even sure we can dress a full team at the moment. (ignoring any possible promotions for the boys from woostah) And despite DW assuring us there's room to move as the season progresses, the team is back over the cap.
Stufflife and Plank had some GREAT points on this issue over at Fear the Fin, and I'm posting them below because they both covered it with far more eloquence that I ever could. (link to the thread, if you wish to read the points there instead)
Stufflife: What’s out of the way? We can’t field the team yet. Technically we’re over the cap in payroll, and that’s with Ortmeyer and without an injured Mitchell and a scratched forward and Demers and Joslin taking the #6 and #7 defenseman spots. We couldn’t even afford to bring up Petrecki (I think. My cap knowledge is spotty).
Boy, that paragraph is a mess. Let me try it another way. Ignore any specific line combos or pairings you don’t like.
Heatley – Thornton – Setoguchi
Marleau – Pavelski – Clowe
McGinn – Mitchell (-injured- hurt, need to call up a reserve) – Ortmeyer
Staubitz – Nichol – Shelley
no healthy scratch
Boyle – Blake
Vlasic – Huskins
Murray – Demers
Joslin as healthy scratch
Capgeek.com says this is $57,349,163; that leaves a theoretical $690,837 in space, but I don’t see it, especially when the cap is set $56.8M.
I don’t see how DW can go into the season like this. Is there another move coming?Plank:
The “theoretical $690,837 in space” is discluding performance bonuses. I can’t find the specific bonuses for either Blake, Setoguchi, or McGinn, but if they are on pace to hit them by the end of the season (20 G for Setoguchi, 30 points for McGinn etc.) then San Jose will need to make a move at the deadline. I explained it here if you’re interested (it’s the first question). I’ve talked with Mirtle a lot about bonuses this summer, and entry level bonuses (Gooch, McGinn) are usually pretty easy to hit- I assume they do it.
As for $.690 M in space, that’s probably enough to sign a healthy scratch on the cheap. DW doesn’t have to make a move now, but if the aforementioned bonuses look like they’re going to be hit, he will have to make a move.
I’m actually going to update this on the main piece- a very good point stufflife, and I wasn’t even aware of it before you inspired me to look at the numbers. Usually CapGeek factors in the bonuses when dealing with cap space. This might be the first time I’ve looked at it without them listing it.
I will reserve final judgement on the addition of Heatley, (as well as any other players we traded for), until I've had some time to get to know them and watch them on the ice. They're Sharks and I will cheer for them. Unless we get Pronger, that's not a fact that's going to change.
Ignoring my personal feelings regarding the loss of Cheechoo (who, to be honest, we knew was not long for teal) and Milan, and ignoring all the Heatley hoopla, I can accept and deal with this trade. As a fan, that is my duty. But I'm just boggled at the reaction to it. It's like suddenly all the Sharks problems are solved by the acquisition of one player. And yet I still have some concerns and I find myself wondering why it is that so many seem to be overlooking these issues.
I don't get it.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Yesterday, around 4:15, I got a text stating that John Buccigross was saying that Heatly was a Shark today (yesterday) or tomorrow (today). My immediate response was "eff no!" because I don't buy the Heatley for Marleau and the Shark Zamboni rumors. There's just been way too many of them this summer for me to take seriously. But, curious, I look and see that Buccigross (or someone claiming to be him) has indeed tweeted about said trade. Not only that but Kukla's has it. I trust Kukla's as a reliable information source, and they obvious trust Buccigross. ESPN also has an article up about it.
Well holy eff, it's TRUE!
At this point I get a call from one Mr. Plank asking if people are just trying to mess with him by saying Patty was traded. I tell him all signs point to no and we both share a moment of vulgarity induced confusion.
I start to go back to investigating. The story is everywhere now. It spread like wildfire. Nothing totally confirmed, but everything is sounding like the deal was for real and it's about to go down.
I fanshot links to various articles and the conversation "asplodes" (as we say on teh interwebs). Still wishing for the rumor to be false, (more because I dislike how Marleau's been being treated by management and fans alike of late), I abandon my post and go to watch some TV and doodle. My mistake is that I chose to sit on a comfy surface and I quickly fall asleep. (I did somehow manage to finish the ACEO I had been working on before deciding to abandon consciousness in favor of sleepytime)
I awake a bit later, wander back to the computer and see that OH SHIT, the trade is confirmed. I repeated THE TRADE IS CONFIRMED. My mind blows. It's all over. I find some Kings fans discussing it elsewhere. I see tweets about it from all over. sjdhalsflsaf;sf'asf
From here on, it gets weird.
Shortly after seeing the trade is confirmed, the internets are flooded with reports that state quite the contrary. LA says no, they aren't involved in any trade. the Sharks say no. The Sens say no. Then we find out the Sharks and Sens haven't even spoken recently. Wait, WAT?
Conflicting reports pile up as I head out to find dinner. By the time I return, the hockey world has been righted and Patrick Marleau is still a Shark. Not a King, but a Shark.
The trade itself seemed overly complex, and moving Patty to LA seemed ridiculous. but given how things have been here in Sharksland this summer, it didn't seem preposterous. In fact, I'd say the crazy surrounding Marleau this off season only lending to the creditability of the statements.
Ignoring all other issues, this trade would have annoyed me because it feels like we've been jerking Marleau around for the past two summers, and he doesn't deserve the thrown under the bus treatment. Yes, he was the Captain during a spectacular playoff failure, but the team was sputtering well before April, and that ignores how he was Captain for all the good things that happened last year. It obviously wasn't just ONE GUY that caused the problems, it was systematic.
All I have been looking for all summer from Doug Wilson is a definitive answer on Marleau. Does the team stand by him, or no? And by "team" I mean ownership. It's been made clear over the years that the players stand by Marleau. While I don't doubt there weren't questions about his methods last post season in the locker room, I just don't feel like management leaving him out to dry is a good thing. We know Joe Thornton is safe, despite that fact that you could easily make similar claims about his lack of leadership. So why not Patty?
This whole situation reeks of something that should have been thrown out weeks ago, and yet has been left to fester in the back of the fridge. It was only a matter of time before it exploded.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Working the Corners has a quick recap of last night's game. Man, I missed a Gordie Howe hat trick from Petrecki? Sharks won last night's bout 5-0.
Boom. Tough actin' Tinactin.
Sharks Ice, San Jose
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Tonight @ 7pm
Sharks Ice, San Jose
Proceeds to benefit charity, but the altruism is just a bonus. It's live hockey folks! Get out there and watch it! I can't go tonight and I'm sad. It's some fun times.
Monday, September 7, 2009
Post Game Recap: (it's like the real season!)
So, that was awesome.
There's something to be said for the joy that is watching a hockey game from the bleachers, close enough to the ice to know the players can hear you, surrounded by hundreds of other fans who are just as eager and excited for the season to start as you are.
The was an electric energy in the air, and even though we all know that we won't be seeing most of these rookies on the team come Oct 1st, it didn't matter. They had on teal, and that was all we cared about. We knew few names, but still managed to get our like for all thing teal across.
Couture is unreal to watch. He was easily the best player on the ice. This kid is as impressive as they say.
The crowd favorite seemed to be #70, Daniel Erlich. He's 5'6" and only 150, but this kid can motor. He's amazingly fast and the crowd appreciated his efforts. During the shoot out (yep, it went to the shoot out) the entire crowd stood and cheered for him. He scored.
The Sharks rookies looked better overall, though the Ducks had better fighters. Color me unsurprised.
There were a lot of penalties. Some good calls, some I'm not sure, but the crowd weighed in on all of them.
The linesman fell down. Oh he tried to play it off, but he fell down, went boom.
Some hard hits. I mean, bone rattling. A few people were hit into next week.
A few pucks slammed into the windows of Stanley's. No beers were hurt.
The refs were ECHL refs and they could not, for the life of them, place the puck in the right spot during the shoot out. They'd just kinda toss it and let it slide all over. They were also still scared of getting hit, and flinched when players got too close. (not that I blame them). It probably takes a lot of years of practice to develop NHL level nerves of steal.
Shootout was like 7 rounds or something. Nowhere near as nerve wrecking as a "real" one. It also followed what Mina accurately called "the longest dry scrape ever."
Drew Remenda and his boys were in attendance. He was super nice, said hi to everyone and stopped to sign jerseys.
Rusanowsky was there too, but spent most of the time in the glass enclosed war room behind us. This is also were we saw Todd McLellan and Doug Wilson. We also probably annoyed the hell out of them. No one would run up and smash their face against the glass, but I kept hoping someone would.
Marchment wandered by after the game when we headed out front and had the good fortune to meet some seriously fantastic bloggers. SwisherThresher melted into the ground while the rest of us said hi.
It was sooo nice to see hockey again. Live, in person. To feel the chilly air and listen to the religious fevor with which the fans cheered and booed. Just three weeks until the real season begins. I can't wait.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Training Camp starts on the 13th according to this schedule, and the 12th according to the article mentioned about. Either way, it's hockey. That you can watch. Live. Go do it!
Rough, but you all deserve a post with a drawing in it. This was inspired by the "overheard" comic I am working on. It involves a doll Nabokov. So, I drew a doll style Nabby.
I felt a little Power Puff and I worked it.