So riddle me this. Are interconference games incredibly dull because of the unbalanced schedule, or should we be much more appreciative of the unbalanced schedule's inherent ability to save us from incredibly dull interconference games? I expect your answers, single spaced, annotated, and fully illustrated on my desk by noon tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm going to sit here and try and pull something mildly amusing out of the dreck we saw last night. Then I'm going to kiss some snakes. I'm going to hug, and kiss, some poisonous snakes.
- Rollin', rollin', rollin'...keep them lineups rollin'...: It's a small bit of alchemy that had forever eluded Teflon, namely, the ability to use...and trust...his third and fourth lines. The Bryan suffers from no such affliction and thank Christ for that. Otherwise, we would have woken this morning wondering how the hell the Canadiens had managed to get five points ahead of us, instead of only three. Messrs. Schubert and Vermette? Please step forward and accept the mildly alarmed platitudes of a gratefully nervous populace.
- Cool! The judge said we get double credit for time already served: I'm not sure how the boys did it, or even if it was entirely deserved, but they managed to make it through the entire first period without taking a single penalty. After the parade to the box on Sunday, this struck me as a mind blowing miracle on par with the Resurrection (see what my blasphemous ass did there? My lapsed Catholicism is showing). Since the Blues power play is slightly less effective than your average junior team, it is a matter of some debate whether this actually mattered, but it was nice to see.
- Well...we do have an opening in the mailroom: If The Bryan wants to get a second scoring line going, he'll evidently have to do it without Randy Robitaille. I know! I'm as shocked as you are! By the start of the second he had been dropped to the second line, replacing The Captain with Fish and Stillman. He was so effective there, that by the time the last period started, he was playing with Verms and Kelly on the third line. With five minutes to go, he made a brief appearance on the fourth line with Schubeedoo and Donovan. Had this game gone to overtime, I'm thinking he would have been back with the trainers, sharpening skates. And we wouldn't have missed him.
- Missing pet. Large, hairy, can be mean but fiercely loyal. Reward for safe return. Answers to "Gratz": Watching Barret Jackman run around after Fish and then flap his yap into a double minor for stupidity, I couldn't help but wonder, why the hell doesn't anybody shut him up? This was quickly followed by "Holy crap! Somebody call LAX Lost Baggage! We must have lost McGratten on the west coast swing!" So...um...how's that knee Chris? Feel like playing? How about tomorrow? Tomorrow would be great.
- Come again?: At one point, I heard Dean Brown refer to one of the Blues players as "the Czech born Pollack". The anti-PC part of my primordial cortex was delighted. Then I realized he was talking about rookie call-up defenceman Roman Polak. "OH...THAT Polak" I thought, relieved a little that a potentially embarrassing gaff had been avoided. But (a small) part of me was left hoping someone in the League would draft a player by the name of Viachislev Fernandez, if only to hear Brown refer to him as "the Russian born Spic".
- He's got huge, sharp-- eh-- he can leap about-- look at the bones!: Most goalies paint something fearsome on their masks. Curtis Joseph had his vicious, rabid dog and "CUJO" inscribed on his. Eddie Belfour, with his proud and fierce eagle. Every goalie in Florida Panther history has adorned his gear with some variation of that lethal and predatory animal. And the Blues' Hannu Toivonen is certainly no exception. At least, I think. It was hard to tell what exactly the pink bunny on the back of his mask was meant to represent, but I'm guessing it has something to do with the Finns' natural fear of rabbits.
Ugh. Thanks for the two points, Saint Loo, but I'm glad that's over. Eight to go, all in the division. Which, of course will make for better hockey. Everybody knows, you can't play good hockey without having a hate on for the opposition. Otherwise, we'd call it soccer.
Saturday night, coast-to-coast on the Cee Bee Cee, we travel to Toronto for the first of two. To finally put a playoff stake through their black hearts will be sweet indeed. I'll be watching this game from some friends of ours, who were gracious enough to invite Beloved and I to dinner. If this doesn't go well, I'm thinking their two year old will have a whole new vocabulary to share with Nana and Pop Pops come Easter morning (note to all non-hockey people...Saturday night dinner parties, particularly in March, may not be a great idea).
Behind Enemy Lines:
The Wonderful World of Loser Domi, a refreshing break indeed from the usual blind adherents to the Evil Empire who pollute the Fan 590's call in shows with guttural noises, but who have yet to master, mercifully, the art of typing with their knuckles. Who says Leaf fans can't be philosopher poets?