Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Breaking News!!!

The Blueland Chronicle has learned that the Ghost of Billy Mays is desperately trying to stop the Dany Heatley trade to the Edmonton Oilers. Our reporters have found that Dany Heatley is in Edmonton, driving around the town with Ales Hemsky trying to learn the route to the arena. The Ghost of Billy Mays (a life long Oiler fan) has made a brave attempt to save Ales. Reports are unconfirmed at the moment, but we have received this photo of the daring rescue attempt:

More on this breaking story to come...

Heatley To Edmonton

Shit just got real

Heatley for Penner, Cogs, and Smid

Just Saying

Mike Cammalleri is still my first choice, and Nik Antropov might be the most sensible (if you can talk him down from his over-the-top demands about the Money), but...injury troubles aside, this shit can't be denied:

That's Quite a Defense/Cap Hit You Got There

Jay Bouwmeester signs 5 year deal with Calgary. $6.6 million a year.

No way the Flames are re-signing Cammalleri.

Oh Why Not? A Minimal UFA Eve Liveblog

- Darren Dreger twitted that the Flames are going to make an offer for Jay Bouwmeester TODAY. [Dreger Twee]

- Rob Blake has signed a one-year contract with the Sharks. 3 and a half million. Good job Doug Wilson, and good for you R.B. [San Francisco Chronicle]

- I actually don't remember hearing about this, so I'll report it to myself: The Pens have signed Bill Guerin for 2 years. [TSN]

- Oh snap the Oilers have made an offer to hotshot goalie Dwayne Roloson: one year for $3 million. His best friend Rob Blake sniffs at that kind of money! Decline, Rolly, and come to Atlanta to take the place of one of our goalies. [TSN]

- DAMMIT. The new Jersey Devils have signed defenseman Johnny Oduya to "a multi-year contract." Suppose he won't be the answer to our Top 4 Defenseman woes. [Jameszilla]

- Not related to free agency, BUT: Our very own Ron Hainsey has been invited to training camp for the USA Olympic team WOOOOOO!! The full roster:

Goaltenders: Ryan Miller, Jonathan Quick, Tim Thomas

Defensemen: Tom Gilbert, Tim Gleason, Ron Hainsey, Erik Johnson, Jack Johnson, Mike Komisarek, Paul Martin, Brooks Orpik, Brian Rafalski, Rob Scuderi, Ryan Suter, Ryan Whitney

Forwards: David Backes, David Booth, Dustin Brown, Dustin Byfuglien, Ryan Callahan, Chris Drury, Scott Gomez, Patrick Kane, Ryan Kesler, Phil Kessel, Jamie Langenbrunner, Ryan Malone, Mike Modano, Kyle Okposo, T.J. Oshie, Zach Parise, Joe Pavelski, Bobby Ryan, Paul Stastny.

Woooooo. But where the hell is Zach Bogosian? [USA Hockey]

- Nik Antropov definitely not returning to the Rangers. [Kukla's Korner]

- Dreger thinks the Canucks have offered the Sedins a 5-year contract. [Dreg-Tweet]

- A disreputable source has told me there's going to be (and I quote) "HUGE CANADIENS NEWS AFTER 4 TODAY." [Too Embarrassed to Type Out the Source and Link]

- Flurry of rumors about the Thrashers talking seriously about Tomas Kaberle. I doubt it, but I BET the Thrashers are interested in Pavel Kubina.

And why shouldn't they be? 14 goals and 26 assists last season. And the Leafs need a goalie. All together now: hmmmmm...

- Mike Komisarek WILL test the free agent market. Hold on to your ass. [Mirtle Twitter]

- Kevin Allen of USA Today tweets that Chris Higgins has been traded to the Rangers. WAS THIS THE BIG MONTREAL NEWS? [Kevin Allen Twitter]

- Whoa hey this IS big news: Scott Gomez traded to Montreal for Chris Higgins. Whoa hey. [TSN]

- Toronto sports broadcaster Daren Milard says the Habs are hot after Hossa. [Daren Milard Tweaker]

Is Today The Day?

Last day before free agency folks. Could today FINALLY be the day we resolve our goalie situation? I think it might be. Think about it, tomorrow at noon teams start to fill their needs through UFA's. How are we going to know what UFA's to target if the goalie trade is still up in the air?

In an ideal world, we would make the trade today for either at top 4 D or top 6 forward. Then focus on getting the other guy in free agency. You may recall that the Chronicle has been bantering about this for over a year now. It is time to be done with it!! Make it happen DW. This decision is the second biggest one you will have to make in shaping this franchise (the other one being, well... you know). Both choices have their pros and cons. This is why you get paid the big bucks. Part of me wants to keep Kari because he is proven. Part of me wants to trade him because he can't stay healthy. Pavs is an unknown with that scary word, "potential".

What to do, what to do... heeengh? When Moose was re-signed to that two year deal I really didn't understand it. Great guy, and goalie... but everybody knew we had this situation looming around the corner. I thought a one year deal would have been perfect. Now, with that second year, it has help create a difficult situation. Are you comfortable with Moose and Pavs as your goalie in the year that we need to impress The Czar? Had we not signed Moose to the 2 year deal, he more than likely would have moved on and the goalie duo would be Kari and Pavs.

OK, at this point I'm just rambling the same stuff we already know about. As Monty Python used to say, "GET ON WITH IT". So, this is the official trade a goalie post. Your thoughts and predictions are appreciated in the comment section. Is today the day?

Monday, June 29, 2009

Dump Thorburn?

As you've all read by now, the Thrashers have made qualifying offers several of their RFAs: Colby Armstrong, Kari Lehtonen, some other people I myself just heard about for the first time.

No qualifying offer has been extended to perennial first-line right winger/Kovy's Special Power Forward Chris Thorburn, but Ben Wright says Thor and the Thrashers are in contract talks and it's likely some kind of agreement will be reached.

Is it time to let Thorburn walk and make room for Spencer Machacek, and possibly that fresh-faced Evander Kane fellow we all love so much?

I'm not bold enough to make this an Official Editorial Position, but for my part: Put the old boy out to pasture. It is time. As the Falconer says, "He's a 4th line guy who never kills penalty, isn't a fighter, isn't especially big or fast."

Wonderful guy though.
Chris Thorburn Under the Bus

For Your Consideration

Apologies for the late post. The Chronicle staff had to attend the funeral of Billy Mays today.

Now then. It's a fact, A FACT, that either Lehtonen or Pavelec is going to be traded in the next few days, for either a top-six forward or a top-four defenseman.

If we get the top-six forward through trade, we'll get the top-four defenseman via free agency. And vice versa.

Not sure who we can market Lehtonen or Pavelec to. Actually, I do. Detroit, Colorado, Edmonton, possibly Chicago (eager to shed Khabibulin's contract, them*) would be takers. Who could we a-get from any of these teams?

Not sure if Lehtonen is enough for the likes of Paul Stastny, but my it'd be nice. Pavelec would easily get us Polish noble Wojtek Wolski. Detroit might hand over Valtteri Filppula or Jiri Hudler, either of whom would be splendid. Hudler is a fine goal-scorer, and he'll only get better with time, but he MAY not be our guy if we're looking for size. Filppula seems like an unimpeachable choice: imagine him centering the Czar and Bryan Little. Then there's Red Wings prospect/occasional player Ville Leino, a great forward who nevertheless can't find room on the Marian Hossa roster.

Speaking of size up front, there's always free agency. The main prizes here, in my opinion, would be Mike Cammalleri and Nik Antropov. You all know about Cammalleri, right? He'd be amazing, but if we can't get him, Antropov is exactly what we need: a huge (6'6, 230 lbs., BIG) guy, a scoring forward who tallies 20+ goals every season but could probably reach 30-something under John Anderson, can play both center and right wing. He's my choice in the (highly likely) event we can't grab Cammalleri.

We shall take this conversation further tomorrow, into the realm of defensemen. In the meantime, what do you kids think about this top six forward business?

*This is typical blog wickedness. As it happens, Khabibulin is a UFA, so Chicago doesn't even care about him anymore! THAT is the truth!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

What They Are Saying

Well, from all accounts it appears everyone is pleased with how the draft turned out for the Thrash. I am also pleased as long as we end up with a top 4 D in the yet to come goalie trade. Kaberle anyone? Maybe a trade with the Blues, Oilers, Avs? Who knows. Here is what ESPN had to say about the draft. They only picked three or four teams that they singled out to have done a great job. We were one of them:

Atlanta Thrashers: They will never be a salary-cap team, but that doesn't mean economics won't play a significant role in how they proceed, especially with star winger Ilya Kovalchuk set to become an unrestricted free agent next year. But the Thrashers continued on that slow road back to respectability, and perhaps even relevance, with what one rival GM described as "a terrific draft."

GM Don Waddell told ESPN.com on Saturday that their top three picks -- Evander Kane, Carl Klingberg and Jeremy Morin -- were all potential first-round picks in the Thrashers' draft mockup, and they got Klingberg at No. 34 and Morin at 45.

Kane, the fourth overall pick, is considered a keeper, and if he continues to add bulk (his father is a boxing/fitness trainer), Waddell said the talented center from the Vancouver Giants could be on the team's roster in the fall. The Thrashers also likely will be interested in adding a top-four defenseman and no doubt will look at the availability of Toronto blueliner
Tomas Kaberle.

On to the devastating news, we have lost Billy Mays. God love em. I'm sure right now he is in Heaven trying to sell Jesus a bunch of crap.

We are gonna miss you Billy. A hero to all of us here at The Chronicle. I'm being serious.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Official Editorial Position on This Year's Draft


Now on to free agency and the re-signing of Ilya Kovalchuk.

2nd Round Antics

No trades today, I guess.

But that's okay, because we drafted big Swedish winger Carl Klingberg, who a lot of people expected to go in the 1st round. In his Twitter feed the Falconer says he's not exactly what we need. I have no idea. Plays like a gritty Canadian forward, compares himself to Tomas Holmstrom. I hope that turns out to be reasonably accurate...Some say he's a bit like Johan Franzen.

We also drafted forward Jeremy Morin, from the US development program. Being American he's known Zach Bogosian since they were little kids, and they're friends HOORAY! Said to be a pure goal-scorer, and the 2nd best sniper in the draft. WOOOOO

Thrashers TV video, all about it, here. Quite excited about Morin, me.

Friday, June 26, 2009

To the Draft and Draughts We Go

Evander Kane
(updated below)

Closing time in the Chronicle Newsroom, bitches. I'll see some of you in a few hours, face-to-face (I have an ungodly stubble right now; I look drunk already). The rest of you will have to wait for photos.

Don't forget, I'm missing Bill Maher for this. Should be fun! I'll leave you with a picture of the dude we'll probably draft tonight, unless we trade the pick away to some terrifying Toronto GM. If so, welcome to Atlanta, Pavel Kubina.

UPDATE: SO WE DID DRAFT KANE WOOOOOOO. The party was fun but Monsieur Catalogues is a wicked man and forced me to leave early. I met new Thrash beat writer Chris Vivlamore, a wonderfully nice man who filled me in on certain details about the crumbling AJC (I told him to his face I'd criticized the arrangement that's led to his being appointed beat writer; he was reasonable and courteous). Great guy. Also finally got to meet Aaron, the proprietor and planter of Blueland Outsider, and his beautiful wife Naomi (is it okay to say this out loud, Aaron?). A fine time. But Monsieur Catalogues is a bastard, for having a party to DJ later in the night. Also, WE DRAFTED EVANDER KANE HELLS YEAH. I almost wept when he put on the jersey.

UPDATE II: Late night boogie. Enjoy.

I'm lookin' for The Man with the 4th pick/ I'm askin' for Evaander Kaane...

(watch this space, it'll be continuously updated all day)

- As Darren Dreger and Big Shooter have already reported, the hawt offer for Tomas Kaberle and the 7th pick came from the Boston Bruins. They were willing to hand over Phil Kessel. Looks like Phil will definitely go somewhere. The inevitable question: do we give up the 4th for Kessel? [TSN, Dreger Twitting Machine]

- Ben Wright has made a sexy video about some of the top draftees in Montreal. Brayden Schenn and Evander Kane seem to know about us! [Thrashers TV]

- Ben Wright is a regular Kurosawa. ANOTHER movie, this time featuring himself and Don Waddell in what appears to be a glamorous Montreal hotel room (I really have no idea where it's filmed). [Thrashers TV]

- Darren Dreger tweets the following: "TB gm, Brian Lawton says he expects to hold his pick, 2nd overall, but will listen. Says no discussions on Lecavalier." Now you know. [Darren Dreger's Twitting Emporium]

- YES. NOW we're talking: Puck Daddy delivers with a charming video about the draftees' favorite and least favorite NHL jerseys. Evander Kane has the right answer about the best, sad he took the safe way out about his least favorite. [Puck Daddy]

- Deep thought: I bet the Bruins wanted to land Kaberle and use the #7 pick to draft Magnus Svensson-Paajarvi. Future winger for David Krejci.

- The Falconer writes about some of his impressions and experiences in Montreal. Craig Custance makes an appearance; questions arise about whether the Falconer is Don Waddell's doppelganger or vice versa. [Bird Watchers Anonymous]

- John Anderson has been sighted. [Bird Watchers Anonymous]

- Back from lunch, what'd I miss? Nothing, it seems.

- Whoa hey Ben "Federico Fellini" Wright has conducted a video interview with Thrashers head of amateur scouting Dan Marr, who seems a pleasant mustachioed fellow. [Thrashers TV]

- The Edmonton Oilers are interested in our 4th pick, says the Edmonton Journal. OK, Thrashtards, what's it gonna take for you to give up #4? Hemsky? Cogliano? Gagner? Steve Staios? [Edmonton Journal]

- Deep thought: If the Thrash had a pick of any of the Top 3, I would take Victor Hedman. True story.

- Darren Dreger tweaks: "Tor, Philly, Minny and LA closing in on Ryane Clowe. SJ still trying to sign him." Interesting. Perhaps LA never wanted Heatley. Maybe they were just trying to get Ryane Clowe, this entire time. [Dreger Tweaking Factory]

- Prediction: LA trades down so Delta Burke can unite the Schenns at #5. LA will use the 7th pick to draft Magnus Svensson-Paajarvi. It will happen.

- Garth Snow is a shadow warrior, according to Darren Dreger: "Garth Snow has done a masterful job of hiding his intentions. Outside of his owner, Charles Wang, no one knows what the Isles intend to do." He works in mysterious ways. [Dreger Tweeting Plantation]

- James Mirtle won't stop forcing his Victor Hedman pornography on us God-fearing U.S. Americans. Some of us come to hockey blogs to read about HOCKEY, sir, not to be made feel inferior physique-wise to handsome Swedish defensemen. [From the Rink]

- Your Chronicle editor is missing very important things for this Draft Party tonight. Which goes to show just how much he prefers hockey to most human endeavors. Next time, Bill, next time.

- The Falconer makes good with some photojournalism at the Bell Center. [Bird Watchers Anonymous]

What is it with SB Nation and the hockey porn?!! I am notifying Bettman.

- Let's liven this up with some music.

So 90's.

- According to TSN's live blog, Darren Dreger says that Vincent Lecavalier is physically IN Montreal right now, but he's turned off his phone. [TSN]

- Want to know a fun fact about tonight's hoe-down at TJ's? Thrashers "beat writer" Chris Vivlamore will be there, and I've criticized him somewhat on this very blog. HAHA AWKWARD uhhhhh...

- A good luck song for tonight. Lord knows that golden touch can come in handy.

- The Falconer twitters the following: "EDM's Jim Matheson suggests TOR and EDM making offers for ATL's 4th overall pick." Kaberle? Kubina? Hemsky? WHO? [The Falconer's Twitter-Raptor]

- Not hockey-related, but I came across this on the old Twitter feed and I think there's something indescribably wonderful about it: children's book author/artist and New Yorker cover-designer Maira Kalman writes and draws all about Thomas Jefferson in today's NY Times.

Kessel for Kaberle and the Leafs 7th?


Thursday, June 25, 2009

There Will Be No 4th-for-Kaberle Trade, Repeat: There Will...

Ben Wright's Twitter machine tells us that DW seems to want to stick to the 4th pick. Screw you, Delta Burke!

Meanwhile, DW says the 34th pick is quite popular. HMMMMMM...

UPDATE: If you watch the movie thingies on TSN, you'll find a more or less candid interview with Delta Burke about whether or not he's been talking to the Thrashers about the #4 pick. HE HAS. But they also interview Don Waddell, and he says he feels confident that the Thrashers will keep Mr. Four. NOW YOU KNOW.

OMFG times Infinity

He was Michael Jackson, for God's sake. All the weirdness/accusations of child molestation aside, the guy was (at one time) a freaking genius as far as pop music goes.

Perhaps it's better this way. We can remember him for his early music, and remember him as he looked before he became a perpetual carnival. Keep in mind he was the son of an abusive religious whacko, and he's been one of the most famous persons on the planet since he was a little kid. He never had a chance.

Anyway, rest in peace. Back to draft rumors and hockey operations (we shall throw back many an MJ toast tomorrow at TJ's). Any "haw haw little boys eye caint sepurate uh persin frum hiz art" comments will be deleted, so don't fucking bother.

UPDATE: As usual, Wonkette knows how to deal with these delicate situations.

O For a Draught of Bouwmeester! That Hath Been Cool'd a Long Age in the Deep-Delvèd Earth

(updated below)

(updated again below)

(updated yet again below)


The news and rumors surrounding the draft are heating up. HEATING. As in:

- The Florida Panthers look like they're about to make the hilarious decision to trade Jay Bouwmeester's rights to some team in exchange for a 3rd-round pick. This means that some lucky team will have the right to talk to Jay Bouwmeester on the phone until their parents scream at them to hang up and go to bed. [TSN]

- TSN also reporting that Doug Wilson is pacing back and forth on his balcony, high atop a cliff overlooking the Pacific, considering whether he should deal Ryane Clowe to the Philadelphia Flyers for either Claude Giroux or Scott Hartnell. [TSN]

- All this business about Waddell trading the #4 to Brian Burke for something or other. I don't believe. [Fourth Period]

- Look out, Monsieur Catalogues. The Kings are rumored to be "highly interested" in Dany Heatley. But so are 14 other teams. [Fourth Period]

- The trainwreck in Tampa is raising the hopes of Montreal folk that Vincent Lecavalier will be theirs very soon. [TSN]

- Looks like there's a real possibility that Phil Kessel will be traded. I certainly didn't believe the hype at first, but I reckon it might happen...what can we give Boston? MARC SAVARD, THAT'S WHO! [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

- WHOA HEY DON'T LOOK NOW I just checked the Los Angeles Kings' Twitter account and they're openly talking about sending their #5 pick and "1 or 2 players" to Ottawa in exchange for Heatley. Whoa hey. [LA Kings Twitter]

It's the most exciting time to be a hockey blogger, folks.

UPDATE: Brave Thrash-blogging operative the Falconer is in Montreal, interviewing Evander Kane and others. He reports: Kane was asked bout 4 times how he feels about going to Atlanta, looks like he better get used to answering that question. I asked him if he has ever closed his eyes and imagined lining up for a faceoff with Ilya Kovalchuk and said that he tried not to get to far ahead of himself...[Bird Watchers Anonymous]

UPDATE II: WHOA WHOA WHOA HEYA according to Minneapolis Star Tribune writer Michael Russo and other operatives in Montreal, the Los Angeles Kings have just offered their 5th overall pick, winger Alexander Frolov, and "another" to Ottawa in exchange for Dany Heatley. [Kukla's Korner, Twitter]

UPDATE III: Toronto Maple Leafs say they've received a "significant" offer for Tomas Kaberle. One wonders if this has anything to do with the Waddell-talking-to-Burke rumors. I ain't gonna give up no #4 pick for Kaberle, good though he is. [TSN]

UPDATE IV: Ben Wright has written a report from Montreal, do read it. Entertaining pen portraits of the top prospects (apparently Magnus Paajarvi-Svennson is some kind of Scandanavian Viking snow-beast, half Swedish and half Finnish), and um, one curious (in a good way) thing about Ben's posts. Do you ever notice that when he's on assignment at the draft or in another city live-blogging a Thrashers away game, he always writes in detail about the food? The offerings in Montreal sound especially sumptuous. Just a distinctive feature of his style; he might be the hockey version of M.F.K Fisher or A.J. Liebling. Oh yeah, he had this to say about Evander Kane: Evander Kane can play all three forward positions and says he’ll play wherever there’s a roster spot for him. Both he and Schenn think they can play in the NHL this season. [Blueland Blog]

Your Blueland Chronicle Plan for Draft Action

If your Chronicle editor was GM, here's a-what he would do tomorrow in la Belle Montreal.

First thing's first. With the #4 pick, I'd draft Evander Kane. I've already said why I want him for the Thrashers, but just to quickly outline why we need him: if every serious NHL scout can be believed, Kane likes to drive to the net, plays a gritty game from the blue line in, and has serious scoring ability. He'll create space for Kovy (and Zach and Toby, and Bryan Little) on the power play and/or at even strength, and he's been compared to Jarome Iginla (Kane's favorite player) for his power forward abilities and net-crashing hunger. The other similarity between Iginla and Kane, of course, is that they're both from Western Canada.

Now then, on to the second round. It gets a bit trickier here, of course, because we might package one of our 2nd round picks with a goalie (Pavelec, more than likely) to get something awesome. IF we for some reason keep both of the picks, here's what I would do:

With the #34 pick I'd draft either Joonas Nattinen or Charles-Olivier Roussel. I'd choose Nattinen, "a big hard-nosed two-way centerman who can play with finesse and power," because one day Marty the Party might have to retire. A possibility we all must face. He'd be a reasonable 3rd- or 4th-line center, I think. Also, he's Finnish, and thus he'll play well with Kari Lehtonen and Anssi Salmela.

Roussel because he's said to be a solid defenseman who creates offensive chances. Can carry the puck, good and simple in his own end, can play the power play, etc. Presumably a good fit for the style the Thrashers are embracing. Stats from this past season: 44 points (11 goals, 33 assists) in 68 games.

With the #45 pick I'd draft a young man named Alex Chiasson. TSN explicitly compares him to Colby Armstrong. Scouts say he has good stick-handling ability and that, Colby-and-Cheechoo-like, he can really dig for a puck. Not a great goal-scorer, put he can take hits and find the puck to make passes to more naturally-shooting linemates. His stats this past season playing for Des Moines: 50 points (17 goals, 33 assists) in 56 games. 101 penalty minutes.

Now that said, if I were GM I'd probably just send one of those two 2nd-rounders, with Pavelec, to the highest bidder. We need ourselves another good top-six forward. I'll take whatever they're offering.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Don't You Forget

sexy happy asian girl dancing animated gifs
Sexy party on Friday at Alpharetta hockey dungeon TJ's. Important Drinking will be done while watching Important Decisions being made about the Thrashers' future.

Fun starts at 7:00. You can navigate your way using this map.

Morning Briefing, Mainly About the Lightning, but also Evander Kane

- Tampa Bay Lightning fans would get on the Twitter, color their avatars, and seek to overthrow the OK Hockey ownership clowns but it's just so nice and sunny outside. [Lightning Strikes]

- There's talk that Vinny Lecavalier will almost certainly be traded at the draft. The consensus among Internet Lightning fans seems to be that trading Vinny wouldn't be the end of the world, but that they have zero confidence that their front office could get anything in return. When you remember that Koules and Barrie's first act as owners was to have Dan Boyle traded to free up space for Ryan Malone and Gary Roberts, getting absolutely nothing in return (Matt Carle would eventually be traded as well), this seems reasonable enough. [Tampa Tribune]

- Jarret Stoll's kind of a prick. Model Rachel Hunter has been left devastated after her fiance Jarret Stoll cancelled their wedding just seven weeks before they were due to tie the knot. Canadian hockey player Jarret, 27, suddenly called off their engagement by emailing guests informing them the August 14 nuptials were off. [Daily Mail]

- Back to Tampa Bay. Phil Esposito does not care for this "Trade Vinny" idea. "I wanted Vinny to be our Stevie Yzerman, a top guy who would remain with the organization his entire career," said Esposito. [Tampa Tribune]

- To add insult to injury (literally, in this case), Tampa goaltender Karri Rammo has gotten the hell out of Dodge and chosen the KHL. Top goaltender Mike Smith, meanwhile, languishes with a concussion that he may not completely recover from by the start of the season. [Raw Charge]

- Good article in the Vancouver Sun about Evander Kane. The more I read about him, the more excited I am to draft him. For instance: Kane's physical development, combined with his speed, power and hunger for the net, draw comparisons to Iginla..."If you compare Jarome's stats in his draft-eligible year, Evander is far ahead of him," one B.C.-based NHL scout says. [Vancouver Sun]

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Sports Illustrated is Very Serious

Can we finally stop pretending that being employed by a famous magazine or newspaper is a guarantee of even minimally accurate reporting?

Allan Muir, burning the midnight oil as a deadline bears down:

4. Atlanta Thrashers: Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson, LW, Timra (SEL)
Keep an eye on the guy that announcers, for sake of brevity, refer to as MPS. Widely considered a lock for the top-five since an impressive performance at the World Juniors, there are now whispers that he could drop several slots. Wishful thinking on the part of some scouts at the lower end of the lottery and beyond? Could be. I still think he's too intriguing a package to slip. MPS's game is all about speed. The kid is a burner, Mike Gartner-style. He blazes up and down the wings, blowing by defenders and driving hard to the net where he's capable of fooling netminders with a variety of shots. He'll be a first-line winger in this league no matter where he lands.

Right. I recognize this kind of thing, from Experience (not at Sports Illustrated). He's cold making shit up, tossing off readymade phrases that are both perfectly true (MPS is "all about speed," I'm sure, and that he "blazes up the wings") but so general and context-free that they don't mean a damn thing.

Research, in the form of a quick Google search for some combination of "Don Waddell interview" "2009 draft" "Thrashers" "Who will you choose?", seems to be lacking as well. D minus SEE ME.

Also, the Red Wings want your Colby Armstrong. The Falconer is already talking about torches and pitchforks.

Well If You Don't Have Anything to HIDE...

Well go ahead and fire me from my job
But there's-a one little thing you ain't gonna rob
That's my freedom and my liberty

Well I ain't gonna piss in no jar!
Them evil peckerheads, they done gone way too far

-Mojo Nixon, "I Ain't Gonna Piss in No Jar"

Head over to Puck Daddy and read the most inspiring/infuriating story of the year.

Puck Daddy's personal hero of the day: Florian Busch, a German national hockey player for Polar Bears Berlin, who has received a two-year ban from the Court of Arbitration for Sport because he chose to "relax" with his girlfriend rather than take a doping test in March 2008.
The AP story includes German Coach Uwe Krupp's admission that Busch was sharing "a private moment" with his girlfriend when the anti-doping officials arrived unannounced.

Uh HELL YEAH. Herr Busch, you are a hero. Your editor must admit he holds heretical opinions about certain kinds of doping in sports, but he shan't bother you with them right now. Point is this dude chose quality time with the girlfriend over taking a drug test (administered by people breaking into his house) and now he's been suspended for it, despite testing negative when he finally took a non-cockblocking test.

From the AP report:

The fight against doping has stepped up in recent years, leading to complaints from some athletes and sporting bodies that controls have become too intrusive.

No shit.

3 Days 'til Draft Mega-Party!

funny animated gif

Big Shooter has already mentioned that the entire Chronicle staff--possibly excluding the Short Handed Mole, not sure when he gets out of rehab--will be present at Rawhide's big draft party bash at TJ's in Alpharetta. Surely this deserves its own post.

We would go to the official party in Duluth but, um, uh, hmm. I am miffed I'll probably miss Zach Bogosian.

But your Chronicle will be there! If you know what we look like (Big Shooter will be particularly recognizable because he is a tall Puerto Rican with a mustache) come up and say hi. Aaron of Blueland Outsider has told me he'll be there, as will all kinds of other characters.

So come on down. Brayden Schenn and Matt Duchene and Evander Kane will be there, on the teevee, and surely it's going to be fun all-around.

If I have any say the party will go exactly like this:

Been a long time since I listened to that. Anyway, DO COME.

Lunchtime Briefing

- Big Shooter reports that the Tampa Bay Lightning ownership is every bit as funny and screwed-up as we thought. [Blogwhore Chronicle]

- James Mirtle has been vindicated as well, but for the Fans. We've been vindicated because we like sniping at anything to do with the Lightning, for Ignoble Schadenfreude. [Jameszilla]

- The Detroit Red Wings have discovered that Chris Chelios has been 47 this entire time. CHELIOS TO THE THRASHERS NOW! [The Detroit News]

- So. That Rick Dudley guy, right? How about him? How about HIM? Aaron knows. [Blueland Outsider]

- Is Jay Bouwmeester the One to rescue the Leafs from what can seem like permanent mediocrity? Perhaps. Hey, one time, in 1993, I watched the Leafs vs. Kings playoff series, that being the first hockey I'd ever laid eyes on. This is true! [Kukla's Korner]

- Ovechkin sighted at the Much Music Awards in Toronto. Does Much Music still exist? I used to watch that religiously back in junior high; I thought it was so much cooler than vulgar vapid MTV. I had a huge crush on that one girl VJ...what was her name? Rebecca something or other... [Puck Daddy]

- R.I.P. sir. I think Andy Richter is a worthy successor. Seriously, I watched Conan's version of the Tonight Show for the first time a few nights ago and I thought it was actually pretty good. Oh yeah Ed McMahon... [Entertainment Weekly]

Just Delicious

The next time you start feeling bad about the Thrashers situation, please consider this:

At least your team is not the Tampa Bay Lightning. Our owners have many, well advertised, faults. Thank goodness that this is not one of them:

"One point of contention between the two has been general manager Brian Lawton. Last season, a source told ESPN.com, both owners were cutting deals with agents on July 1 at the same time Lawton was also attempting to sign players. Koules has since realized that Lawton must be allowed to run the hockey department, but not Barrie, a source said. Part of the reason for the meeting with Bettman is that Lawton and Koules fear Barrie may try to sign his own players next week."

Just when you thought things couldn't get more silly down in Tampa, they manage to surprise us again.

On a different note, I can't wait for the Draft! Also, we more than likely will find out which goalie is going to be moved. My money is on Pavs. Your Chronicle staffers will be with Rawhide at TJ's for the draft. Over the years I've found the official draft party to be mainly for the autograph seekers (which I am not). Hey, whatever floats your boat. Go to the official party, come join us at TJ's, or watch from home. The next two weeks are gonna be a blast.

Proposed New NHL Tradition

The league has a unique opportunity to start an amusing tradition this offseason. Hossa is a free agent hoping to stay where he is, and Dany Heatley has demanded a trade. Should the Red Wings decide to re-sign Hoss to a multi-year contract, only to announce hours later that they have traded him for Dany Heatley, it would mirror what happened four years ago. Luckily for Nick Fogliano, it wouldn't mirror it down to every last detail.

In four years, Heater can demand that Detroit trade him, and they can make the Hossa swap again. A good time is had by all!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Some Things

The hockey wires are at a slow trickle today, sorry. I'm sure there will be more to report and play with as the week inches closer to Draft Day. I've heard that TSN tossed off the idea of the Thrashers trading Bryan Little to Philadelphia in exchange for James van Riemsdyk and either Joffrey Lupul or Daniel Briere or Scott Hartnell, or something along those lines.

This would be a plausible trade, if it weren't for the fact that van Riemsdyk is a bit of a Maybe and Bryan Little is now a proven Look At That. I tell you, we could've gotten the likes of Lupul for Ondrej Pavelec, but the Flyers went and hired Ray Emery instead, the fools.

So, the selections for the 2009 class of inductees to the Hockey Hall of Fame are tomorrow. 4 player openings. Some folks who became eligible this year:

Steve Yzerman
Brett Hull
Brian Leetch
Luc Robitaille
Alexander Mogilny
Dave Andreychuk

Yzerman, Hull, Leetch, and Robitaille seems like an unimpeachable bunch. But then again, consider who's been eligible for a while now but still hasn't been inducted:

Pavel Bure
Doug Gilmour
Adam Oates
Dale Hunter
Mike Vernon
Claude Lemieux
and more.

Who's it gonna be HMMMMM? HEEEEENGH?

Meanwhile: yes, aliens, there will be an Indy 5.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Your Friday Fun Post

Nothing doing in the Hockey right now. Ne'er worry, though, cause a week from today is National Evander Kane Day.

So. It's Friday! Ah, how fun.

So I'm reading one of favorite Internet writers, comedian and comedy writer Dennis Perrin (who wrote--from the perspective of the sports fan he is--a book about American sports culture and why he thinks it blows goats; he never mentions hockey, interestingly), and he's posted a bunch of Conan O'Brien sketches the like of which Conan will never, ever, be able to perform on the Tonight Show. Head over to Perrin's site and look at them all; I was particularly taken with Lobster Jerry Lee Lewis:

He's also been trawling through old David Letterman clips. This is a classic of So Horrendous It's Brilliant. Note the visible discomfort of both Dave and Paul:

And now some other haw haw I've discovered, as it is the Weekend, after all, and we must be Entertained. This is too good to be true:

TV actually used to be like that, apparently.


And Now, Ladies and Gentlemen, Chaka Khan

The NHL Awards thing was somehow tedious and embarrassing at the same time. If the NHL wanted to do a Vegas show, why didn't they do a Vegas show? Couldn't they have hired Wayne Newton and some showgirls? Gotten one of Siegfried and Roy's tigers to carry the Richard Trophy to Ovechkin in his mouth?

Aside from Pavel Datsyuk, Kevin Smith, Tim Thomas, and Jean Beliveau there was very little wit or spontaneous emotion of any kind. Even JR managed to be boring.

E. from Entourage adjusting his mike, because of the Shortness, was sort of funny.

Award show fail.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

BREAKING: Reform Afoot in the Thrashers System?

Craig Custance drops a bombshell:

The Atlanta Thrashers have raided the Chicago Blackhawks to bolster their front office. According to an NHL source, the Thrashers have hired Chicago assistant general manager Rick Dudley to be an associate general manager under executive vice president and current GM Don Waddell.

The source told SportingNews.com that Dudley wasn't brought in to replace the longtime Thrashers GM and that it was a Waddell hire. Dudley has been with the Blackhawks since 2004 when he was hired as a hockey ops consultant and was named an assistant GM in July of 2006.

He brings a wealth of experience to the Thrashers front office. He was the general manager of the Florida Panthers for two years (2002-04) and before that was the GM and senior vice president in Tampa Bay. He spent one season as the GM of the Senators.

In Tampa, he acquired players like Nikolai Khabibulin and Martin St. Louis who were key members of the Lightning's Stanley Cup winning team. Dudley was also in the running for the Jack Adams Trophy as head coach of the Buffalo Sabres following the 1989-90 season.

I fully expect a Rafsanjani vs. Khamenei/Mousavi vs. Ahmadinejad type confrontation sometime in the near future.

The breezes of change are blowing, my friends.

Your Blueland Chronicle Guide to the NHL Awards

Ah, the greatest night of hockey kitsch in all the year.

This year's awards show promises to be memorable for a few reasons:

1) Jeremy Roenick is a presenter. JR + Las Vegas + live TV = possibilities are endless

2) Great decision by the NHL to send all its gap-toothed stars to Las Vegas, where they can get into amusing trouble. The Chronicle was going to send the Short Handed Mole to that wonderland of vice, for Coverage, but he's currently locked in a Trappist monastery in Kentucky and Vegas wouldn't be the best destination for him right now. Not for a rodent of his appetites.

3) Not only is it in Vegas; it's at the friggin' PALMS WOOOOOOO. Your editor once stumbled out of some back entrance/exit to Caesar's Palace one clear desert evening, hell-bent on wandering west from the Strip to find the Palms (for it's not on the Strip, sadly), but the person in his company was dispirited by the whole Vegas phantasmagoria of neon lights, fake world capitals, and unsightly tourists and just wanted to go back to our crumbling room at Circus Circus, like a lamer. So we went our own ways and it turned out to be an unfortunate evening.

OK, now your guide to the NHL Awards finalists in the categories where people get nominated instead of winning through badass statistics:

HART MEMORIAL TROPHY- Most Valuable Russian Player
- Pavel Datsyuk (Detroit Pistons)
- Evgeni Malkin (of the Stanley Cup)
- Alexander Ovechkin (do you realize Ovechkin will be loose at the Palms?)

Who Should Win: Evgeni Malkin
Who Will Win: Evgeni Malkin

VEZINA TROPHY- Best Goaltender
- Niklas Backstrom (Minnesota "We're WILD, I tell you! Playing trap hockey is WILD, MAN!")
- Steve Mason (Columbus ho hum)
- Tim Thomas (Bruins)

Who Should Win: Tim Thomas, because he really is that good.
Who Will Win: Steve Mason

NORRIS MEMORIAL TROPHY- Best Defenseman (a nebulous category)
- Zdeno Chara (50 points and 169 hits YES PLLZ)
- Mike Green (Caps)
- Nicklas Lidstrom (this man is a very important man)

Who Should Win: Zdeno Chara, because out of this group he embodies the best of both worlds. Awesome offense, terrifying defense.
Who Will Win: Lidstrom again, because he's dynasty. Don't get me wrong, he is a demi-god, but this year isn't his year.

-Bobby Ryan (Ducks)
-Kris Versteeg (Hawks)
- Steve Mason (Blue Jackets have wings, surely?)

Who Should Win: Bobby Ryan. Look, Mason IS great, but he was helped by an ultra-defensive system. I'd like to see YOU score 31 goals your rookie season. Mark my words and mark 'em good: Bobby Ryan is a future Rocket Richard winner. He'll be more important to the Ducks franchise than Charlie Conway and Adam Banks combined.
Who Will Win: Mason.

LADY BYNG MEMORIAL TROPHY- probably not an award Ilya Kovalchuk will ever win
- Pavel Datsyuk
- Zach Parise
- Martin St. Louis

Who Should Win: I'm sure they're all gentlemen, so...
Who Will Win: Who cares moving on

FRANK J. SELKE TROPHY- Best Defensive Forward
- Pavel Datsyuk
- Ryan Kesler (Vancoucer Canucks)
- Mike Richards (Flyers)

Who Should Win: This is the hardest one, because all three are excellent defensive forwards in their very different ways. Is Datsyuk's awesome stick-handling (ideal for poke-checking and take-aways) somehow better than Mike Richards' constant scoring of short handed goals, or Ryan Kesler's sheer relentlessness and ferocity? I don't know. I'd like to abstain from voting here, but I must finish what I've started: even though Ryan Kesler is my favorite out of this bunch (one of my favorite players in the league right now, really), I have to go with Datsyuk.
Who Will Win: Datsyuk.

JACK ADAMS AWARD- Coach of the Year
- Claude Julien (Bruins)
- Todd McLellan (Sharks)
- Andy Murray (Blues)

Who Will Win: Claude Julien.

BILL MASTERSON MEMORIAL TROPHY- wouldn't this one be better if it was the Bat Masterson Trophy?
- Chris Chelios (old)
- Steve Sullivan (no idea)
- Richard Zednick (had his throat slashed open and almost died)

Who Should Win: Zednick. He had his throat slashed open and almost died.
Who Will Win: Zednick.

LESTER B PEARSON AWARD- Outstanding Player, as voted by the NHL Players
- Datsyuk
- Malkin
- Ovechkin

Who Should Win: Malkin?
Who Will Win: Sources tell me everyone hates Malkin and Ovechkin, because of the Jealousy, and love Datsyuk, so there you go.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Blueland Chronicle Comment of the Day

Big Shooter's eloquent rage about Sarah Palin and her dumb minions was inspiring to watch, but tonight, it's gotta be the Jointhead again.

Trying to soothe the fears of the Anglo-Saxons of Georgia over the impending arrival of Evander Kane:

Maybe you could quell this uprising by explaining that canadian black guys don't have hugh cocks like their southern counterparts. I have no idea if this is true, but most white republicans will feel less threatend.

Thank you, Jointhead. Keep fighting for human freedom.

Dave Letterman Takes the Bullet for the Chronicle

I've already explained the Chronicle's role in inadvertently starting this great war between drooling fiends and David Letterman. Perhaps I should've gotten this mediocre joke patented; that way we would have protests outside Chronicle Headquarters, and thus Publicity. Oh well, hockey NEVER gets through to the mainstream; it has to be Pat Booned with baseball references instead.

Anyway, this is priceless:

A Short Case for Kane, plus The Falconer Conducts Important Thrashers Business

The Falconer has begun his promised series of posts on "How to Build a Stanley Cup Contender in Atlanta," and the first two installments are exceedingly well worth reading, so migrate over there and look at the screen.

It's pretty much a certainty, I think, that the Thrashers are going to draft Evander Kane with the #4 pick. This is good for all the reasons the Falconer states.

If I were to summarize the case for drafting Kane, I'd put it something like this:

1) What do we Thrashers fans so often cry out for? Size, and a solid two-way game. Kane has both of these, and he'll develop both significantly in the near future.

2) The kid is a classic power forward: he's big and mean and scores goals. His favorite player is Jarome Iginla, and scouts often compare the two players. I know what you're thinking: Iginla and Kane are only associated with one another because they're both...CANADIAN.

It's not just that they're both Canadian: they really are similar players, which is manna to someone like me whose Dream Line has always been Kovalchuk-Thornton-Iginla. Unless Rich Peverly becomes becomes something very special indeed we might have to wait a bit longer for a Thornton-type player, but right now, in real life, we have the chance to draft an Iginla-type player. Do it.

3) For the life of me I don't understand the people who complain about mentioning Kane's race. Fact is, honkies, there's a whopping huge black community in Atlanta, one with a well-off middle and upper-middle class that occasionally likes to spend money on sporting events. As the Falconer points out, there's ALREADY a quite a few black folks who go to Thrashers games. Adding Evander Kane (who is by all accounts a future star) to our roster certainly can't hurt ticket sales.

Nevertheless I'm sure every dumb cracker in the Metro ATL will find endless horror in this reasoning, because of Michael Vick something something family-unfriendly gurgle snort Ray Emery bad attitude blah hawf tee Mike Tyson snarf snarf Idi Amin THE SHERIFF IS A

4) The guy's named after the Real Deal. He HAS to come here.

But yeah, read the Falconer's posts.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Blueland Chronicle Comment of the Day!

little known fact: Aaron is secretly the Governator

There's no way I'll be able to keep this going forever; it'll probably have to be scaled back to every other day.

BUT I couldn't not hand out our most prestigious award to Aaron, proprietor of Blueland Outsider and tamer of mongooses (and more recently your editor's philosophical sparring partner):

Repeat: Cold killin' the vibe. NOT cold kickin' it live, like the Beastie Boys. Two very different things.

Though with the highly paid mess the Rags have become, Heater would be an interesting addition...

This comment is excellent because 1) of the phrase "highly paid mess," which is striking and elegant and accurate, and 2) he mentioned the Beastie Boys.


Rumors on the Internets

From the Fourth Period:

According to the Ottawa Sun, the Edmonton Oilers are among the teams very interested in acquiring goal-scoring winger Dany Heatley from the Senators.
Heatley, who has a no-movement clause, would have to approve any trade the Senators try to make.

Last week, it became public knowledge that the star sniper had asked to be traded.

The Oilers have been looking for a first-line superstar for several months, dating back to last summer when they reportedly offered Marian Hossa a nine-year, $81 million contract.

It's uncertain if Heatley would approve a trade to Edmonton, but his agent, Stacey McAlpine, told TFP last week that they would be open to any situation.

The Oilers aren't the only team eyeing Heatley, as the Calgary Flames, Los Angeles Kings, Minnesota Wild and San Jose Sharks are also believed to be in the mix.

Big Shooter's 2nd favorite team, Razor's 2nd favorite team, Monsieur's 2nd favorite team, and the very editor of this blog's 2nd favorite team are all in grave danger. We don't currently have a Minnesota Wild fan on board but perhaps we can find one.

If it's Heatley they want, it is Heatley they shall receive. And everything that goes with it.*

Thornton and Heatley playing together would be a Canadian starburst supernova though, no doubt about it.

*Dany asking to be traded every few years and shit, causin' problems and jus cold killin' the vibe in the locker-room like a lamer. Killing. The vibe.

Hockey is Famous

So you jump into the Internet for your afternoon swim and come across this piece of information from the New York Times:

NBC’s Game 7 broadcast of the Stanley Cup final between the Penguins and the Red Wings on Friday night drew an average of 8 million viewers, the biggest American television audience for any N.H.L. game since the 9.4 million who watched the Game 6 Cup finale between Montreal and Chicago in 1973.

Wooooo forget Wayne Gretzky HOCKEY IS BACK BIZITCHES!

The Hockey News Profile on Jeff Odgers

A must read for obvious reasons.

Link here.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Blueland Chronicle Comment of the Day!

I liked Razor's comment about visiting the plastic surgeon so he could re-attach his ass, which fell off via laughing, due to Wade Redden and stuff, but this evening I'm forced to choose penetrating thought over the Haw Haw.

Today's award for Blueland Chronicle Comment of the Day belongs to the legendary Jointhead:

From the red wings Derek Meech and juri hudler will more than likely be available and cheap. Meech was above Kyle quincy on the roster and you see how that worked out for LA. Hudler reminds me alot of Bryan little. These arn't your superstars but they will be culled from a loaded ass team and will prosper somewhere, especially hudler.

Had Jiri Hudler on my fantasy team this past season; he was a DAMN fine right winger. I honestly-to-goodness had no idea that Hudler was a free agent until the Jointhead said so. I'm glad to be enlightened.

Also, Monsieur Catalogues and I have discussed Derek Meech as well, and agree.

Summer Shopping List

We're now officially in Draft/Free Agency Season Advent.

A shopping list, according to most sensory-perceptive people:

- A scoring right winger, preferably with size.
- A defensive defenseman who can play John Anderson's crazy attack system.
- Some say we still need a center for Kovalchuk, but that's all old stuff isn't it? The Pev Dispenser exists for a reason.

A gallery of shopping items, according to the Chronicle:

- Mike Cammalleri. Naturally a center, plays left wing, so I assume he could play right wing. Big. Scored 39 goals last season. Flames apparently keen on re-signing him, but they won't offer him more money than us unless Olli Jokinen takes a pay-cut.

- Marian Gaborik. Always hurt, but my can he score when he's healthy. Fast as all hell, too, which could be a plus for playing with Kovalchuk, Bogosian, and John Anderson's philosophy.

- Mike Komisarek. Big defensive defenseman, uncertain how well he'd fit into Anderson's system. Obviously it'd be great to get him, but if you really want bang for your buck...

-Alexei Semenov. A competent defensive defenseman who occasionally fills in on forward, so I doubt he'd have trouble with Anderson's sytem. Russian, as well, and you know what that means. Would cost peanuts.

Time to Rebuild Around Slava Kozlov

Mark Bradley of the AJC says the Thrashers should trade Ilya Kovalchuk JEEBUS ALMIGHTY DO THESE PEOPLE EVER READ THE RUSSIAN PRESS? Give the AJC keys to Rawhide, for goodness' sake.

It's been obvious for a while that Bradley knows very little about the Hockey in general and the Thrashers in particular. When he deigns to write about them he relies less on empirical reportage than "ZOMG I have a brainwave I am going to write it on the Internet: Has it ever occurred to anyone that Kovy might not want to stay in Atlanta and that did you know his re-signing is coming up but hey he might not re-sign maybe it's all like Marian Hossa THIS STUFF HAS NEVER BEEN TALKED ABOUT BEFORE IN ANY AGE OF WORLD HISTORY EVER."

In an ideal world, Kovalchuk would stay here and everyone would live happily ever after. But this is a niche team in an uncertain market, and he deserves a bigger stage. And the Thrashers need to clear the air and start rebuilding around someone else. Grand as he is, Kovy needs to go now.

Why? How does Bradley know Kovy wants a bigger stage? Does he realize that our "rebuilding" is pretty much a fait accompli, what with Toby Enstrom and Zach Bogosian and Rich Peverley in the house?

I hate this man.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

An Explanation, a Preview, and an Alliance (because this is war, after all)

I feel I should apologize to all the Chronicle's beloved regulars and appreciated irregulars for skipping out on this blog for an entire week with nary a word of warning (except a drunken comment sometime on Tuesday night, I think).

You see, after sending the Short Handed Mole to Florida and not getting word from him for several days, I felt compelled to travel downward and investigate. I took Monsieur Catalogues with me, because he has mole-detecting experience from his days in the Resistance.

Long story short: managed to find the Short Handed Mole somewhere along the coast of our own state of Georgia, in a bad state, then promptly arranged for him to be sent to a Trappist monastery for rehab, and spent the rest of the week in a hotel bar watching the Stanley Cup Finals and talking to quaint locals.

Also, my flesh was incinerated by some flame-throwing asshole who calls himself "the Sun," but the damage is said to be temporary.

Razor and Shooter did an excellent job holding down the fort, writing quality posts, and killing lamers (one) in the comments section with politeness.

Now then, just to give you all an idea of how things will go around here for the rest of the summer:

Posting will probably tick along at normal pace for the next two weeks. The draft-and-free-agency period is usually the busiest of the year, though, so expect all Chronicle scribes to be on their A-game and posting several times a day throughout late June and early July. After things settle down posting will probably be sporadic until the 09-10 seasons begins, but sporadic only by Chronicle standards. There'll still be new stuff every week.

But draft/free agency season, hells yeah and put on your dancing shoes and lock up your daughters.

Speaking of people's daughters: something that's been missed in the recent War on Letterman is that the "A-Rod knocks up Palin daughter" joke was plagiarized from the Chronicle. Which may explain why the joke wasn't exactly Dave at his best. During the election, I'm sure you'll remember, I made a nearly-identical joke when Sarah Palin dropped the puck at that Flyers game. Replace A-Rod with Mike Richards and you have the very same haw haw gag!

Not that this bothers me. The Chronicle (possibly including Razor?) are big Dave fans, and would like to take this opportunity to offer Dave our assistance and friendship in his just war against humorless, pedantic ideologues.* And Conan O'Brien.

*I would have--and HAVE, in fact--said the exact same thing about liberals who can't take a well-crafted (or badly-crafted, come to that) joke about Clinton and blow jobs. I won't even mention what I was forced to do to the retards who blew a gasket over the Barack-and-Michelle-as-Terrorists New Yorker cover.

The Hockey Gods Will Get You Every Time


Friday, June 12, 2009

Is This or Is This Not the Greatest Sport in the World?

I can't believe what I just saw. Amazing. Max Talbot.

Good job, Geno. Good job, MAF. Good job, Sidney fucking Crosby.

Sid, I'll still make fun of you when you play Kovy and his Thrashers, but I have to admit you've earned my everlasting respect. Watching you raise the Cup was an exhilarating sight.

One last thing.


Marian, you're a mercenary weasel, but you're an awesome mercenary weasel. You lost tonight.

If you REALLY want to win...

You know who loves you. Come home.

Stay Tuned

Tonight is the final game of the 08-09 postseason and the cup will be raised by one team or the other. For those of us whose favorite teams have been playing golf since the second week in April, that means that "next year" officially begins tomorrow.

The NHL Entry Draft commences on June 26, just two weeks from tonight. Expect big things around the league in the intervening 14 days. We've already seen big shake-ups behind the bench and in the front offices of the Stars, Avs, Panthers, Wild, and Habs recently. If there are other changes coming, expect them to happen in the next few weeks. Teams want to have their GM questions answered in time for the draft and coaching situations resolved by the July 1 free agency madness.

DW has all but announced that he is shopping a goalie, and chances are that one will move within the next two weeks. GM's are trade-happy in the days and hours leading up to the draft, and DW wants to bring in a top-line forward in order to entice the Czar to limber up his signing hand.

Make no mistake- the Thrashers have to bring in that top notch player through a trade, not free agency. Last season showed us all too clearly that our franchise is a tough sell to top-tier free agents. The biggest selling point to a top 3 forward is likely to be the chance to play with Kovalchuck. But the sticking point to resign Kovy is bringing in a top 3 forward to play with him. So Kovy won't resign until he gets a linemate, and we need a resigned Kovy in order to get him a linemate.

If a trade can't be worked out for a legitimate top center or right winger, then DW will have to get creative. Perhaps the best strategy in that instance would be to discuss with the Czar exactly who from the free-agent list he'd like to have passing him the puck, then have him in for a Sakic-Roy-Blake style joint negotiation wherein they each agree to sign contingent on the other signing as well.

In addition to a top line forward, who will most likely come in a trade and be making in excess of 4.5-6 million per year, the Thrashers need a D man to pair with Hainsey in the second tier of defense. Since the team will be putting its money into Kovy's new pivot and don't need to add marquee talent to the blueline, I'd expect DW to try and steal a second tier defenseman early in free agency while his colleagues are still wooing the Mike Komisarek's of the world. So look for an addition to the D corps coming on July 1-3, but don't expect it to be a blockbuster. It probably won't even phase us from our lingering excitement over our draft pick and the newly acquired forward.

We here at the Chronicle expect to have a lot to talk about over the next month or so before things slow down in late July leading into the awful drought of August. The draft, trade speculation, the actual trade, weighing what we got in the trade against what we gave up, potential free agent signings, actual free agent signings, and lamenting the ones we didn't get will keep us all busy as the mercury continues to rise outside and the Cup makes its rounds of Red Wing or Penguin off-season households.

Looking forward to it all, I'm Razor Catch Prey.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

I Has A Funny...

Well, well, well... this comes to us from the comment section of our friend Bill Tiller's blog at Hockeybuzz. Please let me state up front that I am looking at this purely from the viewpoint of the Sens. I do not want to get in an argument about the Atlanta Dany Heatley. I have my views, other people have their views... that is good enough for me. Looking at it from Ottawa's perspective... I think this is pretty funny:

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

First Star of Game Six

Ever since game six ended last night, I've heard folks raving about MA Fleury. The NBC broadcast team gave him the #1 Star, as have all the folks I've heard on the radio or read online today.

Perhaps they saw a different game than I did last night, but to me the top spot of honor goes to Rob Scuderi. In fact, I also give him the goaltending credit for the win. Midway through the third, Scuderi bailed out his netminder by barely clearing the puck away as Nick Lidstrom came rushing in with a wide open net. Then, with just over a minute left, Scuderi made not one, but THREE saves with Fleury out of position. After stopping the first shot with his stick, Scuderi then made a glove save and a stop with his skate before Fleury was able to get and arm on top of the biscuit to force a faceoff.

The way Detroit plays, a goal at that point would have all but ensured that the Wings would have carried momentum into overtime and hoisted the Cup last night. Had that happened, any spectacular saves Fleury made earlier in the game would have been forgotten. Scuderi won game 6 for his team, and Marc Andre Fleury owes him his entire month's salary.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Big Happenings Today

There's a game tonight. I forget who is playing in it.

In other hockey news, TSN reports that Dany Heatley asked Ottawa management for a trade last week. No word about whether or not there is a related vehicular homicide. The story hints that he would like to play out West. Not surprising, since he's been trying to weasel his way back closer to home ever since Dan Snyder died.

Also loading up a covered wagon and heading for the Oregon Trail is Brent Suter who most recently did a fine job of coaching the mostly Brodeur-less New Jersey Devils to a respectable record this past season. As would be expected, rumors are flying that he will wind up behind the bench of the Flames with his big brother signing his checks. While I feel people should honor their contractual obligations (Suter has a year left with the Devils), I can certainly understand the desire to live in Alberta rather than Newark.

Rounding out the news is actually a bit of non-news. That is that the judge in Phoenix will not be issuing a ruling today in the Coyotes' bankruptcy case. So all those underserved folks in Southern Ontario are going to have to keep on salivating a while longer.