What a great game. The most exciting of the year, so far.
In the last week, the Chronicle has complained about the following:
1. The Thrashers aren't physical enough.
2. The Thrashers aren't winning of late.
3. Kovy isn't scoring goals.
1. They sorted themselves out tonight. The Czar was godlike: I loved his rowdiness. His scraping with Ian White was totally justified, and more importantly it was great fun. The goal he scored, after skating around and around the Leafs defense like a shark waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike, was a classic.
2. The Thrash played rugged and aggressive all night. Kovy's fights were the highlight, of course, but Armstrong, Exelby, and Slater all knocked down Leafs in entertaining ways tonight.
3. The Toronto chattering class is all upset about Colby Armstrong's hit on Jason Blake, of course. A player from the Atlanta Thrashers running into a Leafs player is an abomination against the Canadian Beaver God (who they believe created all of Canada); a vicious hit like Kris Letang's on Todd White, however, is a-okay. Such superstitious people, those NHL media types. I mean...BEAVER GODS! Have you ever HEARD anything so silly? This is what they believe, though, the people at TSN.
4. Speaking of Todd White....by the end of the game your Chronicle editor was putting on his night-robe and slippers, lighting his pipe and pouring himself some brandy, getting in the mood for a Todd White hat trick.
Didn't happen, of course, but a fine pair of goals.
5. Moose ruled. He gave up two fluky goals and one where he was screened by twenty people. Otherwise he Moose-danced and Moose-checked his way to glory. How about that one save?
6. Dear God I love the Czar. I was worried when he didn't score on that breakaway, but he cured all my anxiety when he scored that ridiculously precise goal and roughed up the entire Vegas Maple Leafs. The Chronicle staff happened to be watching the game on the TV machine together, in the same place (a rare occurrence); Big Shooter poured some shots of vodka and we toasted the Czar. Long may he reign.
7. All you schlmazels who think Boris Valabik is better than Mathieu Schneider are silly folk indeed. Probably anti-Semites too.
8. The Thrash are scoring pretty finesse goals and ugly point-blank garbage goals. This is fantastic. Bryan Little has that insane finesse thing going on; how about his lovely move in tonight's game? The Thrash have plenty of finesse (Kovy's goal, Little's move, Slava all the time), but tonight they let us know they're not above simply charging the net and banging in garbage goals (cheers, Chris Thorburn!).
9. Check out the game recap on TSN's main page. The Czar's statement of resolve at the end is priceless. "Always ready to answer back." To the bitter resentful guy with the 70s Berlin mustache. "He's gonna get what's coming to him." What an asshat. The Czar is a badass.
10. Can't wait 'til the Leafs are relocated to Vegas.
11. Keep it up, Thrashers, keep it up.