Friday, February 27, 2009

Game 63; Pens vs. Hawks

Steiggy: "I haven't seen Jordan Staal make this many plays in five weeks!"
Errey: "Now they're going to have to find someone else to play with Crosby!"

"These guys are finding each other like bread and butter out here!"

"All the fans want their hard hats back!" (Side note: the only thing better than a home hat trick on a hat giveaway night is a hat trick that gets taken away by replay review after half the crowd unleashed their free hats)

Game 62.5; Intermission...

Three things:

1) Is anyone else being haunted by this commercial that came on about eighty times last game?

2) Several thoughts on the Whitney trade:

a) I like it. We are a better team now than we were before the trade.

b) Kunitz is a decent player. Will he make up for not being able to resign Hossa? No. Is he better than pretty much every winger on the current roster? Yes. Would you rather see him than Dupuis, Talbot, Minard, etc. on the top two lines? Yes.

He's not the dream sniper everyone wants for Crosby, but it's questionable whether we have the assets or cap space to get such a player (any such deal now would involve Crosby, Malkin, or Staal+others).

c) Tangradi has a lot of potential for the future as a top winger. Second in scoring in the OHL behind only Tavares is a good sign. No success is guaranteed, but whatever.

d) Whitney was expendable as we have Gonch, Letang, and Gogo. We did not need four puck moving defensemen who do not play a physical game (well, Letang hits everything he can, but he's not that big).

3) I had this long winded response today to several friends after they directed my attention to today's Bills Simmons article on ESPN.

Here's the key quote that caused me to flip out (he also suggested Pittsburgh was a good city for an NBA team to move to, which I disagree with):

"Looking at the big picture, the league won't struggle even 1/10th as much as the NHL in years to come -- of all the wildest predictions I heard in Phoenix, the craziest came from a connected executive who predicted that fifteen NHL teams would go under within the next two years (and was dead serious)"

My points of rebuttal to this article are as follows:

a) I will never trust unnamed NBA sources who are "connected" and "know something" about the NHL. This is especially true in an article written by an NBA diehard who admits often and frequently he stopped caring about hockey 15 years ago.

b) The NBA will never work in Pittsburgh. Where are all the sponsorships going to come from? Like it or not, we are a small city with only so much money to go around. We already have three professional sports franchises and the Pens have gone bankrupt multiple times.

Sure, a new arena might be attractive, but it's a small city where a team would be fighting for attention with three well-established teams, two of whom have had recent success, a strong fanbase, and promising futures.

c) Correct me if I'm wrong since I'm doing this for memory, but aren't attendance, revenue, and television ratings trending in opposite directions for the past couple of years for the NBA and NHL? Since the lockout, the NHL has raised it's profile every year (despite nearly every non-hockey writer trying to mock it back into obscurity while ignoring actual numbers). The NBA has faced decreased ratings every year for their playoffs. They might still be higher than NHL ratings (and probably are), but they are trending in opposite directions from what I remember. I'd love to see the numbers come out for the NBA Finals this year if it was San Antonio vs. anyone other than Cleveland or Boston. It would be fun watching every NBA supporter writing it off as not meaning anything while turning around and saying the opposite about the NHL.

d) Phoenix is definitely screwed. I concede that point. Nashville cannot be far behind. Perhaps the two Florida teams are in the same boat (though the Panthers are rebuilding their fanbase this season it seems). I'm not sure if I'd be able to get to 15 teams that are potentially "going under" (read: "sold to Balsillie until Bettman prevents it") though, but let's try:

  1. Phoenix
  2. Nashville
  3. Tampa
  4. Florida
  5. Buffalo
  6. Atlanta
  7. Carolina
  8. Islanders (even the Islanders not so much. They seem to be pulling a Lemieux in an attempt to get a new arena.)

After this it gets murky and I start throwing in teams like the Devils, who despite attendance issues, have never seemed to be on unsound financial ground...or Detroit simply because they're located in Detroit.

e) The NHL doesn't have many super ridiculous contracts for washed up players receiving $20+ million per season or role players making $15 million (Starbury, Kidd, and Iverson: $21m, Shaq: $20m, Kirilenko: $15m) . To be sure, there are some terrible contracts that teams would love to get out of (I'm looking in your directions Wade Redden, Chris Drury, Scott Gomez, and Daniel Briere), but due to the hard cap and player maximums, no role players are making $15m per year in the NHL, no matter how much Glen Sather would like to sign Robbie Scuds to that type of contract.

Also, no luxury tax in the NHL due to the hard cap.

Okay...enough of my defensiveness that I dive into every time non-hockey fans write about the game without any basis other than personal feelings or unnamed sources (note: this also occurs every time Mike Milbury talks). I'll save the rest of my defensiveness for the next time the NHL comes up on PTI and I end up throwing a beer bottle at the television...

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Game 62; Pens vs. Isles

"Jon Sim, there's been a lot of roadkill involved with him around recently."

Finally...Letang on the PP with Gonchar. put a right handed defenseman on the left side with Gonchar working the center/right and a left hander working the right side boards (Malkin), then you have a one-timer threat on each side and the PK cannot just concentrate on stopping the shot from one side...

"It's a good thing the ice is not frozen all the way, Steiggy. That was good swimming there by Eaton."

Tom Fitzgerald's mustache has a buyout clause???? Come on! It's almost March Mustache Madness!

Game 61; Pens vs. Caps

Fuck Mike Milbury...

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Game 60; Pens vs. Flyers

"Nice job, Greg Louganis."

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Game 59; Pens vs. Habs

"Is that glove not working on Carey Price?"

"Sometimes north-south is like a game of Pong when you're playing the Canadiens. They come right back at ya!"

"Unless you're Evgeni Malkin and have three lungs..."

"I can't play chess, but is that what happens in a chess game when you lose a couple of your big guys it just opens right up?"

Errey: "You know, just like a train. You know, it's had the caboose, and you had this. What are all the parts of a train, Steiggy? Help me out!"
Steiggy: "You have the engine, the dining car..."
Errey: "Dining car....hahahahaha. That's where you'd be!"

"This game went from a chess match to 52 card pickup!"

Monday, February 16, 2009

Game 58; Pens vs. Isles, or Smell You Later Therrien

"You talk about books...Bylsma and books...he read that one like a cheap novel, that pass!"

Potash: "Now I'll let you sing again, Bobby."
Errey: "Peewee, peewee, peewee" (YES! More singing!)

Steiggy: "Billy Guerin had the patience of Job there..."

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Game 57; Pens vs. Leafs


Wasn't able to pay attention to much of this game. I did, however, hear Errey singing the peewee song. It was amazing. However, I did not write it down. Anyone have the video clip?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Game 56: Pens vs. Sharks

"Paul Coffey. Take a look at his toes now. It's not a pretty sight...sorry Coff..."

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Friday, February 6, 2009

Game 54; Pens vs. Columbus

"That was a pure picklestabber there. [...] and there goes that $300...twig."

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Game 53; Pens vs. Lightning

"It looks like he stuck his finger in a...socket, didn't he...Jeff Reed?"

"How does [Roethlisberger] dance? He's got the quickest feet for a big guy!"

Steiggy: "...and Jeff Reed, who gets his hair done at Consol Energy..."
Errey: "hahaha...ohhhh...I love it..."

"You mentioned road kill, it's all over the place here on the Mellon Arena ice!"

So to clarify, does Malkin have an indomitable spirit?

"Well, feeling a little shame now, Mr. Roberts. He was drinking the water and it wasn't Fiji!"

Steiggy: "He has that frisky look about him, like a horse that wants to run forever."

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Game 52; Pens vs. Habs

Tired + drifting mind = I got nothing...


Sunday, February 1, 2009

Game 51; Pens vs. Leafs


Steelers side note: did anyone else watch the post-game and notice how worried David Johnson was about the dumpster fire in the middle of Forbes Avenue? It was bordering on an obsession and he kept making the guy in the chopper talk about it. Phenomenal. Don't worry David, it's not going to spread to anything else...