Saturday, September 30, 2006

If any of our readers built up dreams of zany pranks, we apologize. Prank was the only word we could think of. We have realized that we basically have to trick these shows into talking about the Penguins. We aren't trying to be wise-guys or trying to get attention.

We understand we live in a football-crazy town, and we are behind the Steelers as much as the next guy, but the Penguins are 4 days from starting a new season and they have gotten limited exposure.

Well, the Subway Nightly Sports Call was hosted by Mike Zirrone, who I think is a robot. I'm not sure about the spelling of his name because the guy doesn't even have a bio on the KDKA website. I'm not even sure his name was Mike.

The Pensblog's good friend, Mike from Bridgeville, almost got through, tricking the producers with a Tyler Palko reference. The producers would have none of it as they shut him down.

Another good friend, Jim from Castle Shannon, used the old "Pitt beating up on bad teams" line to get on the air. For some reason, the producers let Jim on the air. Jim was gracious for the exposure and the Pens finally got some recognition.

Towards the end of the broadcast, they realized they had a Pens-heavy show on their hands, and let some guy (not of the Pensblog) on who talked about Marc-Andre. Excellent. This was all that we wanted. But we're not stopping here.

Bob Pompeani won't know whether to cry or wind his watch when he tries to job his way through talking about the pros and cons of Pens defenseman Kristopher Letang.

When Marc-Andre Fleury took his place in goal tonight, he was most likely aware of the rumors swirling around him. He might get sent down. He might get traded. He's dating Hilary Duff.

Legal.

He stared this adversity in the face...and lost. The Penguins, though, were without all of their top guns. We can't really judge his performance from listening to game on the radio, but the Pens lost and Fleury was in net.

Michel Oullet scored a power play goal for the Pens for a 1-0 lead. Buffalo scored a power play goal of their own towards the end of the period. Ryan Malone scored for the Pens in the second and they took a 2-1 lead going into the third. We all know what happens next.

It took Buffalo three minutes to tie the game up. Chris Drury scored for Buffalo with nine minutes left in the game to take a 3-2 lead. An empty net goal sealed the deal and that was it.

Stats
  • Henrik Tallinder (BUF) - 1 G, 1 A
  • PowerPlay: (BUF 1 for 6) (Pens 1 for 3)
  • Shots: Buf (29) Pens (22)
  • Fleury - 25 saves
  • Kristopher Letang: 20:43 ice-time, -1
  • Malkin participated in the morning skate.

PENS NEXT GAME: THURSDAY, OCTOBER 5. PHILADELPHIA. MELLON ARENA. OPENING NIGHT.

So, who IS Marc-Andre Fleury?

He was drafted first overall by the Penguins in the 2003 entry draft, becoming the third goalie in history to have been taken with the first pick (Michel Plasse, Rick DiPietro). He made his debut on October 10, 2003 against the Los Angeles Kings at Mellon Arena, where he underwent the goaltending equivalent of a colon exam. He faced 48 shots (46 saves) and stopped a penalty shot in a 3-1 loss.
He ended up playing 21 more games for the Pens that year, finishing with a 4-14-2 record.

Instead of working at Chick-Fil-A during the 04-05 lockout, Fleury spent the season with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins where he posted a 26-19-4 record.

When 2005-06 rolled around, everyone in Pittsburgh thought it was going to be Fleury's coming out party as the Pens revamped their roster with some veterans and The Kid. Instead, Lemieux retired, Palffy quit and the Penguins faltered. Marc-Andre finished the season with a 13-27-6 record. His 3.25 GAA and .898 Save% were admirable considering he was playing behind the worst defense in the NHL.


Now, is 2006-07 the "make or break" year?

Nah...

Fleury looks slick when he makes a save with his picture-perfect technique, and looks like a terd when a third line doofus beats him over the left shoulder. We hope he makes some strides this year, but we also hope he doesn't get traded. Watching him dominate a playoff series in an Avalanche jersey is not something I'm ready to deal with.

MAF Career Game Log

The Pensblog isn't even a month old and, visitor wise, it's become more popular than we thought it would be. We are gracious to our early readers, and invited our early commenters to send us some rants. Here's one from a Pens fan in Hershey, PA.

I live near Hershey (grew up near Pittsburgh) and last year, I couldn't wait for the hockey season to finally start back up. I was a Comcast Digital subscriber and to be able to watch the Pens, I bought the NHL Center Ice package. (Otherwise I would be force fed those a-hole Flyers and the world's worst homer announcers-Coatsey and Jackson. Those two are idiots, but that is another story).

The season started and it was great. I was able to watch every Pens game the first three weeks of the season. Then one day, turning to the channel the Pens game was supposed to be on, a message across the screen read "This game is Blacked out" or something to that effect. I thought, ok, maybe it wasn't sold out. I checked the paper the next day, and it was sold out. The next game day came, and sure enough, another blacked out message. I called Comcast and the high school drop out they had answering the phones couldn't tell me why the games are being blacked out. Next game, same blacked out message. Now I am pissed. I paid all that money to see the Pens and they are blacked out. I called Comcast again, but this time the guy said that because I live in an area that FSN Pittsburgh is available, the games are blacked out. Well here's the kick in the balls: Comcast refuses to carry FSN Pittsburgh. It would take viewers away from watching the goons in Philly(my opinion).

I ended up writing a letter to both Comcast Customer service and the NHL and voiced my complaint. Comcast said they were in a contract dispute with FSN Pittsburgh. Comcast refunded all of my money and allowed me to cancel the center ice package. I guess in the long run, it saved me many aggravating nights watching the Pens get blown out with Thi-bound in the net.

This year I now have DirecTV and have FSN Pittsburgh, and am looking forward to this season. I must say I am disappointed I will not be able to hear Mike Lange (unless I listen to XM while I watch the game). I think Mike Lange's voice is synonymous with the Pens. Watch the "Crosby's Goals Part One" post. His sayings are classic. I will miss listening to him. I know not everyone liked him, but to me, his voice and sayings always remind me of the glory years.

I'm sure Comcast is somehow responsible for the Pens dropping him from their telecasts.

Here's a math equation I learned in high school:

Funny story before I get to the links...

I watched SportsCenter last night. Not one mention of hockey.


FSN Nightly tonight drove me over the edge. High school football highlights...before even mentioning the Pens.

So what did I do? I pranked the host Paul Alexander.

Anyone who was watching, I was Derek from Mckeesport (I am not from Mckeesport. I just couldn't think of anything.)

So yea I started talking about the Steelers, and then in mid-sentence starting talking about the Penguins.

Alexander was stunned. Get used to it, Pittsburgh Media. There will be a prank call everyday to any Pittsburgh radio or TV talk show from now until the Pens start getting more play.

Tomorrow's victim will be the nightly sports call, so get ready.


Anyways some links:


The Post Gazette- Why does it seem that the Post Gazette has it out for Marc Andre Fluery?

Give the guy a friggin chance.... its the damn preseason. Good word On Malkin though




(Free Shelly Anderson)



Did the Penguins not sign Fleury in the offseason? Was that a dream? Why sign him, if he's not going to be a starter? This would be a bizarre move on the part of Ray Shero.



The Trib- Is also jumping on MAF... If they seriously send MAF down, I hope he kills someone.



Read the SI story on Crosby and AO if you get a chance. I am just excited that SI mentioned hockey.

Crosby talks about them being like Bird and Magic in the NBA... Hopefully neither of them gets ....HIV


(The Magic man forgot to wrap up the Magic Stick)


Also before I check out,
the Black and Gold insider thinks the Pens are going to send Welch down. I refuse to link this moron, but here's what else he wrote...


**BlackandGoldInsider.com has also learned that before the start of the season, Ray Shero will attempt to acquire a right-handed shooting center that is a strong on faceoffs. Keep an eye on the waiver-wire.




Bull. Ok we will keep an eye on the waiver wire. Is it going to do tricks? I honestly hate this guy...



To the defense argument, The Pensblog thinks the BG insider sucks. No way they send Welch down.

Gonchar- Eaton

Orpik - Whitney

Those are no question... although Whitney is mud


Kristopher Letang - I like him, right handed shot


Josef Melichar** - He could die, and I would feel nothing


Rob Scuderi** - Couldn't start on my Dek Hockey Team


Eric Cairns (injured) - Not a bad player, veteran


How does Noah Welch not make the team? Is your best defenseman (Gonchar) THAT much better than Welch? What's the spectrum on this?


If I have a chance to get Welch some NHL experience and get rid of a horrible player in Scuderi, I am going to do it.

We are going to find alot out about Shero in the next few days.... and by the looks of things, it might not be that great.

Friday, September 29, 2006

The Mighty Ducks is The Pensblog number 1 movie of all time.




Your first love, your first seventh game, your first gut-wrenching playoff loss. All of these moments stick with you wherever you go in life.

But our number one hockey movie, the movie that makes you see the light...that's something more. That's greatness.

That greatness is the Mighty Ducks.


The importance of all these movies (yes the third one counts, you take the good with the bad) cannot be taken lightly.
To my generation, the Triple Deke, Gordon Bombay and Charlie Conway are like the
Breakfast Club, Clint Eastwood, and the Corleone Family to other generations.
But, the first movie was amazing.
The story of Gordon Bombay, played by Emilio Estévez: Unreal hockey talent (think Crosby), becomes a washed up nothing after blowing his knee out.


He then somehow puts himself through Law School, and becomes the white Johnny Cochran...going 30-0 on his first cases.



(If only Johnny were white and could skate, he may still be alive today)


Bombay then gets a DUI, and is sentenced to community service.

The court orders him to coach a peewee hockey team, the worst in the league. Gordon is at first very reluctant. However, he eventually gains the respect of the kids and teaches them how to win, gaining a sponsor on the way and giving the team the name of The Ducks.

Bombay starts to come around, as do the kids. They pick up Coach Jack Riley's superstar Adam Banks.

Coach Jack Riley, of Son-In-Law fame.


They also pick up Fulton Reed, a big time defenseman that will own anyone.


After Hans (below) breaks the news and reports the "Panthers have the measiles", the Ducks are playoff bound.


He did not molest any of the players.

Once there, they stun District Five and make it to the championship game.


Setting up one of the more dramatic endings of all time.

After Banks gets run by his former teammates, breaking up the Oreo Line, Charlie Conway puts the team on his back. With his team tied late in the third, he goes coast to coast but is pulled down from behind.

The clock ticks to zero.... A Penalty Shot

Imagine how you felt when Charlie Conway smoked the Hawks goalie on a breakaway, using the move his Coach and former Hawk, Gordon Bombay, once failed to use for the Hawks. It is the stuff of legends.




Charlie Conway. Too bad he grew up to be a douchebag.

I originally planned to name all three Mighty Ducks movies to this list, but there is just too much. So look for a review of Mighty Ducks 2 sometime later....

But to really capture the greatness of the Mighty Ducks franchise...here is the best video ever:



This video may make you tear up.

...Marc-Andre Fleury is being shopped around by GM Ray Shero. No link for you...as it is a rumor in the Pens Message Board Nation.

...Hurricanes traded their boy-toy Jack Johnson to Los Angeles because the Hurricanes need defensive help.

...Avalanche forward Steve Konowalchuk retires after a 13-year career of having a long name.

...Hold onto your testicles as Sports Illustrated picks the Pens to finish 9th in the conference.

...Pick up a copy of said Sports Illustrated this week, which features a Crosby/Ovechkin article.

"Go Steelers."

ESPN Game Recap

Well...crap. I listened to this game with the PittsburghPenguins.com streaming feed of Mike Lange and Phil Bourque (it was great to listen to Lange again). Lange was drinking, I believe. But, nonetheless, it was still great to sit back and visualize the game as Mike Lange announces it/talks about his old neighbor's dog whose nickname was Max.

Colby Armstrong scored the lone first period goal, with Crosby and Ekman getting assists. In the second Daniel Briere scored to tie it up, but John LeClair scored about a minute later to give the Pens a 2-1 lead going into the third period.

Ron MacLean, longtime National Hockey Night in Canada host, helped officiate the game tonight.


The third period was the period that special teams play built. Teppo Numminen (yes, still alive) scored thirty seconds in, shorthanded, to tie the game up. With eight minutes left, Army scored a power play goal and the Pens started to caress their narrow lead's breasts. 3 minutes later, Maxim Afinogenov scored a pretty goal (shorthanded) to tie the game up.

In overtime, Adam Mair scored for Buffalo and that was it.

Stats
  • Crosby - 2 A
  • Armstrong - 2 G
  • Thibault - 25 saves
  • Shots: BUF - 29 PIT - 18
  • Faceoffs Won: BUF - 23 PIT - 34
  • Powerplay: (Buf 1 for 9) (Pens 1 for 8)
  • Buffalo - 2 shorthanded goals
These two teams will head up 79 North, then 90 East for the preseason's final game...tomorrow in Buffalo.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

There are movies...and there are movies that truly transcend time. I give you number two on the all-time hockey movie list.


SlapShot




The movie is based on a fake team called the Charlestown Chiefs.
In a town where the mills are closing, the team seems to be not far behind.

Paul Newman plays Reggie Dunlop, the coach/former star player.
Reggie is not above using a dirty trick or two to manipulate his teammates or psyche out opposing players, and cheerfully gets physical when he has to.


Even Reggie recoils in disgust, however, when his tightwad manager brings in the Hanson Brothers, three thick-lensed, thicker-headed goons who are more interested in fighting than playing Reggie's brand of "old-time hockey".

The language is often extremely brutal, and thats what makes it hilarious.


Dennis Lemieux scene is an alltime favorite of mine:





I could write a novel on this movie, but lets face it. We don't have that kind of time.

I'll leave you with this:

Reggie Dunlop: It's their rink, it's their ice, and it's their f*ckin' town. But tonight we got our fans with us!
[other players cheer]
Reggie Dunlop: They spent their own dough to get here, and they came here to see us! All right, let's show 'em what we got, guys! Get out there on the ice and let 'em know you're there. Get that f*ckin' stick in their side. Let 'em know you're there! Get that lumber in his teeth. Let 'em know you're there!
Ned Braden: Bleed all over 'em. Let 'em know you're there.
Reggie Dunlop: Give 'em a good warm-up, Denis. Come on, fellas.


Tomorrow...Number 1......

Apparently, the Anaheim Mighty Ducks...errr Mighty Ducks of Anaheim...errr the Anaheim Ducks have a new game strategy for 2006-07: Bore the opposing team into submission with their logo.

They've gone from this:
(Never had a problem with it)



To this:

(high-res pic)


Wow. They went from having a decent, Disney-sponsored, everyone-knows-what-it-stands-for logo to having the only* logo in professional sports that has no visual representation of the team mascot, the home town or the sport involved (*save the Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers, who have been around since the 1300's. Oh, and the New York Giants, who suck).

All I want is a line streaking across the bottom of DUCKS with a hockey puck at the end of it. Or the part of the K that is below everything else to have the blade of a hockey stick on it. I gave them the benefit of the doubt, looking for some semblance of a duck in the "D". Some people say it looks like the webbed foot of a duck, but all I see is the bat signal.

"I gotta go. The Ducks are on the Power Play."


2006-07 All-Star Game








Finally, look at the Minnesota Wild logo. Do you see an animal in the logo?








Found an awesome site: SportsLogos.net

7 days til face-off.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

I was attempting to call Mark Madden's stupid show (ESPN Radio 1250) today to talk about Malkin, and dispute some things hanging around the internet (like people worried about the Penguins rushing Malkin back to action) when the guy answering the phone said we aren't talking about the Penguins.



I love how Mark Madden acts like he has everyone in the Penguins organization in his back pocket and that the Pens are his passion, but then he won't accept phone calls about them when he's talking about the Steelers.


So after he got done pretending to know football, a caller asked him about the chances of Kristopher Letang making the team (apparently now they were talking hockey).

Madden's response: "The people I talked to with the Pens said he isn't ready."

Thanks, Mark, for that incredible insight. You know so much.

If Madden knew so much, wouldn't he be able to make his own opinion about Letang?
Instead he has to name drop. Thats gay.

Anyway, another new enemy of mine is the Black and Gold Insider. He claims to have inside sources within the Panthers, Steelers, Pirates and Penguins organizations. Yes. All of them. My left nut.
I won't link it because his site sucks.


The only black and gold thing that this guy is inside:


(Wow. If he drove that cab, the Insider would have a REAL job.)

Well I feel better now..
Here's tomorrows headlines from
the Post Gazette - Good read on Dominic Moore. But is it just me or is Dave Molinari trying to make the Penguins look gay this year? Yesterday's threesome comment, and now today's story with homosexual overtones to Dominic Moore and Noah Welch.

The Trib- Good read on Mark Eaton....who, by the way, will be the best defenseman for the Pens this year.

Good night and Good luck

In case anyone forgot about this...

January 10, 2006: Following a 3-1 home loss to the Edmonton Oilers, Coach Michel Therrien goes into "Reserved Jim Mora" mode. (Chris and I went to this game, like anyone cares.)

The Kovalchuk incident that he talks about is here.

Enjoy.

Movie number 3 on the best hockey movies of all time is: Youngblood.

(As you can imagine from the title of this post, its a must see.)



(Warning: The gayness emanating from this movie poster made my computer freeze. Twice.)

I am not going to lie, folks. Rob Lowe sucks.

In Youngblood, Lowe plays Dean Youngblood , a sensitive young farm boy, who fights against the odds as he struggles to succeed in the brutal sport of ice hockey. He falls in love with the daughter of his no-nonsense coach, and is at odds with the fighting which is a necessity in the sport for him to be noticed by professional hockey scouts.

Really...if Michel Therrien has a daugther, nothing seperates this movie with Jordan Staal's fight to make the Pens team.


The cast of this movie is unreal. Included with the wildly untalented Lowe are:

Patrick Swayze, a veteran of the team who is trying to make the leap into the big time.

And Keanu Reeves, the Thunder Bay Bombers Goaltender.


Youngblood faces test, after test, after test. The first is falling in love with the coach's daughter
(he scores a goal, and she falls in love with him). Things just happen this way in Canada. Its ok.

The second is my favorite. Swayze's character gets steamrolled by this jobber named Racki.

Think Cam Neely getting hit by Ulf. Forward to 2:28 of this video to see Ulfie smoke Neely.

(Cam Neely's cameo performance in Dumb & Dumber rivals Lowe's performance in this movie.)

Like a chicken, Youngblood is stunned by his mentor getting lit up like a white guy walking through Homewood.

Youngblood retreats to his family farm, where he learns to fight, and comes back and owns Racki in the ending fight.


All and all this movie is good times....But watching more than once could cause you to want to contemplate killing yourself...


Tomorrow's Movie

Slapshot


The season cannot come soon enough

TSN.ca reports:

The Pens claimed center Karl Stewart (5' 11" 185 lbs.) off waivers today. He's played 13 NHL games with the Atlanta Thrashers...recording one point. But his OHL and AHL stats aren't too shabby.

TSN.ca also unveiled their "players to watch" list. They abide to our previous post about Linda Cohn's article, although they have a couple boring ones, too.

Here's the list from TSN.ca:

  • Evgeni Malkin - Good pick
  • Tomas Vokoun - Good pick
  • Chris Pronger - Ehhhh.
  • Roberto Luongo - Good pick
  • Jonathan Cheechoo - Was he a one-hit wonder? He's from a town named Moose Factory.
  • Cam Ward - Defending Stanley Cup champion...a requisite on a list like this
  • Alex Tanguay - New scenery in Calgary
  • Brendan Shanahan - I hope he pulls a Palffy on the Rangers.
  • Saku Koivu - Gotta appreciate Koivu
  • Todd Bertuzzi - I think a lot of people just want him to go away

Found this bad-ass pic of Jocelyn Thibault of when he was with the Nordiques.
Killer uniforms.



The Pens are enjoying some "down-time" this week as they participate in a four-day boot camp at West Point Military Academy in New York state. The whole idea is to build teamwork and trust and to drag each other across a football field. Not much to say here. That article is self-explanatory.


(Terrible Photoshop Job)

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

2001: Kissing Pittsburgh good-bye.



We aren't Jagr haters. We understand why people boo him at games, though. I think they just forget what Jagr did while he was here in Pittsburgh. He made the transition to Lemieux-less hockey easy for us. Not much to talk about here. Everyone knows the memories. We can't hate him just because he wasn't personable.
He jumped at the chance to score a big contract and secure financial peace of mind. If I was a hockey player from the Czech Republic, I would have done the same thing in 2001. I just kinda wish he didn't semi-tank in the 2001 Conference Finals against the Devils.

In case you were wondering:

(as of 9/26/06)
Career Goals: Lemieux - 690, Jagr - 591
Assists: Lemieux - 1033, Jagr - 841
Points: Lemieux - 1723, Jagr - 1432
Art Ross Trophies: Lemieux - 6, Jagr - 5
Playoff OT Goals: Lemieux - 0, Jagr - (Can't find the exact stat, but I can think of 4.)
Mullets: Lemieux - 1, Jagr -1

Just lettin' ya know.

Wasting no time tonight folks.

As promised: the Number 4 best hockey movie ever.

This movie is also on my ALL-TIME list at number 14 right behind

"Follow that Bird"

Did I mention I am 23 years old and single... ouch






Anyway.... on To Mystery Alaska





Plot
A publicity stunt turns into the ultimate lopsided competition, when the world-famous New York Rangers face-off against the team from Mystery, Alaska, a hockey-loving town of only 633 people. Team Mystery is a rag-tag collection of eccentric locals including the town's sheriffs, its grocer, a deliveryman and a highschool senior who play for the love of the game, not fame or big money.
Its about a bunch of Jobbers who play a game every Saturday in this town in Alaska. When Hank Azaria's character writes a story about it in Sports Illustrated, someone from New York gets wind of it, and a great story is made.
Lots of very good hockey scences in the movie, and believe it or not, Russell Crowe is somewhat tolerable.
Plus if you hate the Rangers this movie is for you. However I would have loved to see this movie made with real NHL guys. Imagine Lemieux playing against some delivery guy. Or Jagr fending off a check from a postal worker and smoking 4 goals top shelf.
This movie only made 8 million dollars, which is horrible.
If it were about High school football, it would of made $181 million.
I hate High School football.
Anyway, another downer to this move is that Burt Reynolds is in it..... yea really the only bad thing.
This is so off topic, but I was searching for a Burt Reynolds video clip and came across this video on YouTube
This is truly one the funniest videos I have ever seen... Including Mark Summers (of Nickelodeon's Double Dare fame) and Burt Reynolds getting in a fight on the Tonight Show...
Enjoy...



We usually wanna stay focused on hockey, but this was too good to pass up.



Tomorrow's movie
YoungBlood


Monday, September 25, 2006



Featuring: Mike Lange 2.0

During the calm before the Penguins season storm, and with all the fanboys jumping off the Steelers Bandwagon (I like the Steelers more than anyone, but we're just more concerned with the Pens right now), I've decided to release my list of top 5 hockey movies of all time.



Tonight through Friday...join the fun. Leave some comments. Laugh with us.

Drum roll please...




Number 5:






Well this movie is great for three reasons:

1. Its happens in Pittsburgh

2. Watching it can remind you why the Penguins are in their current money crisis. I mean, we really could have used the money that Howard Baldwin spent for this movie.

3. This movie provides us with a running joke everytime we walk into the Mellon Arena.

If you don't make at least three Sudden Death jokes when you're in the Mellon Arena, then you don't know whats going on.

When I was at practice two weeks ago, someone said the ice was bad. Leading the way for someone else to say " Yea it's because of that helicopter that fell on the ice." You can't put a price on these comments. It has become a part of going to Penguin games.


PLOT

The plot line has more holes in it than OJ's Alibi. But guess what, the Juice is loose baby.



The only thing they got right is police near the Hill District.........BOOM. Yea I said it.



Anyway

The year is 1993.
And Darren McCord (Jean Claude Van Damme) takes his two kids to a Chicago Blackhawks-Pittsburgh Penguins Stanley Cup Final game, unbeknownst to him that the sports arena has been taken over by terrorists, who are holding the Vice President of the United States, as well as many other high-ranking officials hostage. Darren later becomes the only one who is aware of the situation. And, the stakes are raised when the terrorists announce that they will blow-up the building at the end of the game. Therefore, Darren must not only subdue the terrorists, but postpone the game and send it to overtime.

Hmm. Where to start?

Why couldn't they have had Jean Claude Van Damme develop a Pittsburgh accent?
Could you imagine him saying something like "Yinz the Iglooze gohn blow up n' at. Call mare Murphy."
I would watch this movie everyday. I'll pay Van Damme 50 bucks to re-record his lines. I know he needs the money.

Surreal scenes...
1. Van Damme playing goalie ... no one would notice this?.. In case you wondered, Tom Barrasshole wouldn't release his name rights to this movie. Can't blame him.

2. A shootout in the Locker room. Where was Brian Engloom? Darren Pang? Someone would have heard this right?
Could you imagine Darren Pang:
" Holy jumpin', boys!! Someone just got lit up by an AK47."

3. "Lucky" Luc Robitaille's thrilling goal. The longest breakaway ever. I really enjoyed when Robitaille played here. But I wish they would have let Dave Roche score that goal.

Other facts:
The movie made $20 million at the Box Office.
Mike Lange and Paul Steigerwald should have won Oscars for their performances.
Apparently there is a beginning of the movie where Van Damme fails to rescue a girl from some building, and retires from the fire department in disgrace. If I would have watched this movie on VHS rather than DVD I would have known this.

Tomorrow's movie
Mystery Alaska...

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Pens cut 8 Guys tonight


More importantly, Erik Christensen was one of them.
Some would think that this could mean that Malkin may be better off than expected.
And it might make sense, but you never know. But now, the Pens have only 4 centers.


Centers: Crosby, Malkin*, Moore, Talbot, Staal
Left Wings: Ekman, Malone, LeClair, Roy, Carcillo, Stone, Pivko
Right Wings: Armstrong, Recchi, Ruutu, Ouellet, Petrovicky*
Defense: Eaton, Gonchar, Orpik, Welch, Whitney, Melichar, Scuderi, Letang, Cairns* Goaltenders: Fleury, Thibault, Sabourin

(thanks to Letsgopens.com for the list)


The Pulse of the Pens message board nation is that the Christensen cut is a message Malkin is good to go.

Here at the Pensblog we will only be sure when we see Malkin opening night.

ESPN Game Recap

Roughly seven hours driving time from Pittsburgh


Tsunamis, hurricanes, deadly viruses, and war in the Middle East. The signs are all around us. I didn't know what to make of it all...until I read the box score for tonight's game:

Andre Roy - 0 G, 1 A

The apocalypse is upon us. Roy recorded an NHL point when he assisted on a goal by Ryan Stone in the second period of the Penguins 2-1 victory over Philadelphia.

Whachew gonna do when Andre Roy runs wild on you


After a scoreless first period, Ryan "Kidney" Stone got the Pens on the board. Later in the second, Philly's Geoff Sanderson scored on the powerplay to tie the game. Our old buddy Petr Nedved assisted on the goal.
The third period looked like it was a snooze-fest until Johnny Chocolate LeClair scored on the powerplay with 5 minutes left. The most appealing thing, looking at the box score, is the fact that Penguin Daniel Carcillo got a double-minor for high-sticking with 2:40 left in the game. Hitchcock probably pulled his goalie at the 2:00 mark, and the Pens effectively killed off a two-man advantage for the last two minutes of the game. That's intriguing, if that's the way it went down.

Stats
  • Nice to see a Pittsburgh sports team that can win.
  • Sid Kid Did not play
  • Jordan Staal - 1 A
  • Jocelyn Thibault - 18 saves, improves to 2-0 in preseason
  • Shots: PHI 19 - Pens 12. 12 shots.
  • Powerplay: PHI (1 for 6) - Pens (1 for 6)
  • Less than 11 days until the season opener against the Flyers

Two preseason games left
9/29 - vs. Buffalo
9/30 - @ Buffalo

http://www.tsn.ca/fantasy_news/feature/?fid=10825

TSN Canada projects Crosby to win the scoring title this year with 48 G, 71 A, 119 Points.
Armstrong - 27 G, 38 A, 65 Points
Gonchar - 12 G, 48 A, 60 Points
Nils Ekman - 22 G, 36 A, 58 Points
Mark Recchi - 22 G, 36 A, 58 Points
Ryan Malone - 25 G, 26 A, 51 Points
John LeClair - 21 G, 23 A, 44 Points
Ryan Whitney - 18 G, 24 A, 42 Points
Mario Lemieux - 0 G, 0 A, 0 Points


Lemieux shows disapproval of his TSN Canada point projection.

The Mark of the Beast


If you have studied your Penguins history, then you know Uwe Krupp is a bonafide Penguin killer. In the 1989-90 season, Uwe Krupp scored a Wayne Gretzky-like three goals. One of those goals was scored in the last game of the season, in overtime, against the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Civic Arena. It doesn't sound like a big deal until you realize that the Penguins needed a tie in that game to clinch a playoff berth. It is the first time I remember crying. My birthday was less than a month away, so I knew a Penguins playoff berth meant playoff tickets (as it has meant every year the Pens make the playoffs).
The game wasn't televised, so I resorted to listening to the game on the radio. At the end of the radio broadcast, it felt like someone stabbed me in my five year-old scrotum. Penguins announcer Mike Lange thanked fans for a season of support and then, done. Radio broadcast over. Season over. My life over. I refused to watch the highlights on the local news that night and I've only seen footage of the goal once, during a Penguins game broadcast in 2005-06. The footage of that goal will be used against me like rats were used against Winston Smith in George Orwell's 1984.

Uwe Krupp's 16-year was quite an eventful one. He was a man of March.

  • March 22, 1989 - Uwe Krupp is chasing St. Louis Blues forward Steve Tuttle towards the Buffalo net. They collide with Buffalo goaltender Clint Malarchuk and Tuttle's skate blade nicks Malarchuk's jugular vein. The footage below is kinda gruesome; not for the faint of heart (or wimps).



    Here is Clint Malarchuk's story. WARNING!!! Gruesome photo in that article (and in this post).

  • March 20, 1993 - Uwe Krupp is only New York Islander player to record 5 points or more in a game during the 1992-93 season. Nearly two months later, on May 14, his New York Islanders squad upsets the heavily-favored Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round of the playoffs.
  • March 1, 1995 - Uwe Krupp (Quebec) is only NHL defenseman to record a hat trick during the 1995 strike-shortened season.
  • June 10, 1996 - Uwe Krupp scores the Stanley Cup-winning goal in the third overtime of Game 4 against the Florida Panthers.
  • 1999-2000 Season - Detroit suspends Uwe Krupp without pay for going dog-sledding while recuperating from a back injury. I couldn't make it up if I tried.
  • Mid-March 2003 - Uwe Krupp announces his retirement from the NHL.


(Some people think this Clint Malarchuk.
But it's actually me in my bedroom, shortly after Krupp's OT goal in '89)



I don't even know what to make of this.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Happened to be browsing the net tonight,
found this on espn.com.

Look. We all know ESPN hates the NHL.
But Linda Cohn writing a hockey column?

Ouch.

Quick breakdown of it:

Here are the five people to watch in hockey this season according to Linda:

  • Dominick Hasek
  • Brendan Shanahan
  • Chris Pronger
  • Scott Walker
  • Ted Nolan

Take it in......
Ready.....


Go.....

Hasek is mud. I am sure when the Pensblog brain trust gets together for a preview of the hockey season, we will go more into detail. But I can think of three goalies I am more interested in seeing:

1. Andrew Raycroft - Is there bigger pressure than being a Leafs player? Not to mention goalie?
2. Kari Lehtonen - Will he help Atlanta to the first playoff run?
3. Jose Theodore - The Avs go as far as he takes them.
Honorable mention: Roberto Luongo - Although I am already rethinking him being at number one this list. He finally gets a good team in front of him... Would anyone be surprised if he turns into the latter day Kirk McLean?

And by Penguins standards: Will MAF finally rise up?

When I think Hasek...I think this ... oh and this too

Next up.
Brendan Shanahan
I really don't even want to respond to this. Who the hell cares about him. He's old, and he isn't even the best player on the team. Rangers go as far as Jagr goes.
Plus how many young players are worth talking about???
AO, Crosby, Malkin(pre-Leclair), Phil Kessel( do not sleep on this guy)... there's so many others it makes me sick.


And while I like Chris Pronger...Whats there to watch about him? He proved all he had to last year in the playoffs.

Linda Cohn sucks.

Yes Scott Walker plays for Carolina. He's good. But of all people...Scott Walker? If she writes another column I am going on a 5 state killing spree.

And Ted Nolan. The real guy to watch is Charles Wang, the Islanders owner. Because he is nuts.

Funny story about Ted Nolan. When the Pens announced the whole casino thing. How many of you thought it would have been funny if the Pens hired Nolan as Head Coach/ Greeter. Come on you laughed.

This can still happen.

Linda Cohn should stop trying to be Carrie Bradshaw....

ESPN Game Recap

3.5 inches from Pittsburgh.
1 centimeter from Buffalo.


Pensblog refuses to recognize the new Sabres logo. We took this opportunity to not recognize the goat logo, either.


Ugh. I checked the score earlier in the game at Yahoo NHL (unexpectedley reliable) and the Pens had jumped out to a 2-0 lead. Images danced in my head of a 5-1 or 6-2 Pens victory, something that would raise spirits amongst us Pens fans. But the Sabres ended up shatting on those dreams.
Nils Ekman and Kristopher Letang (PP) scored the Pens' two goals in the first period, both assisted by Sidney Crosby.
In the second period, Henrik Tallinder scored to make it 2-1. Jason Pominville scored for Buffalo in the third to tie it up and the game slid into OT. A scoreless OT period took the teams into a shootout.
The shootout went a Pens-Islanders-esque 11 rounds. Crosby (second shooter) scored. The Pens were a save away from winning it, but Buffalo's third shooter, Thomas Vanek, scored. The teams then traded saves for 7 rounds until Clarke MacArthur scored for Buffalo and that was it.

Stats
  • Sidney Crosby - 2 A
  • Kristopher Letang - 1 G, 1 A
  • Shots: Buffalo 46 - Penguins 19. Read that again.
  • Dany Sabourin (Pens) - 44 saves
  • Powerplay: Buffalo (0 for 3) - Pens (1 for 4)
Miscellaneous

Next Game: 9/24 - Philadelphia 6:00 PM
London, Ontario


Per the NHLPA CBA

Article 9.1 (d)
In the event that an 18 or 19 year-old player signs with a club, but does not play in 10 games in the first season, the period of the entry level system will be extended (1) year.

Above is a summary of the rule by me. You can read the whole thing because it wouldn't let me copy and paste it, because Adobe Reader is gayer then Governor Jim McGreevey .






The rule, of course, is in reference to Jordan Staal...As there seems to be growing sentiment that Staal may be making this team. And now with the latest Malkin news, it looks signed, sealed and delivered.

There are tons of things that bother me.
But right up at the top has to be programs for women. What am I talking about?

Shows like Greys Anatomy, Desperate House Wives, and of course Sex in the City.
What does this have to do with Jordan Staal you ask?
Well let me explain……..dammit let me explain!
So, I am watching one of the greatest shows of all time ER. And over on ABC, Greys Anatomy just got done with another bullcrap show.
And having to watch this lady on TV is gross.


She is one of the top ten ugLiest people on TV right now. Her face looks like an old catcher's mitt.



Lemieux, Francis, Stevens, Jagr, Kovy, Straka, and so many others.
The Pens and ER were alike. A factory of winning. ER won a Golden Globe. Another 105 wins & 229 nominations, Penguins 2 Stanely Cups. 11 straight years in the playoffs.
But then ER, like the Penguins, got tired. Forced storylines,(bad draft picks, poor development), no leader of the ER (Lemieux retires) lead to unrest.
But last year, ER, after some new casting, and the Pens with Crosby, are headed back to winning terrority.
This is were Staal comes in. Shows like Greys Atamony have copied ER success, and the public's thirst for medical dramas(shows like Chicago Hope on CBS) has grown.
But see, these shows never last. Everything happens so quickly, and you don’t have time to see the evolution of characters.

Same thing with Staal. He can be the star of the ER or he can be a flash in the pan on Greys Anatomy. At ER he would have to wait a few seasons to get his chance. At Greys Anatomy, he could star but ultimately end up getting eaten by this beast.


Don’t do it Shero, as a young Heath Ledger once told Mel Gibson in the Patriot:
Stay the course.

Please Shero. Stay the course.

Winning the Stanley Cup in 1993 would have cemented this team's place as having the best single-season performance of the 90's in the National Hockey League. The team is always mentioned by NHL.com and ESPN.com when they do their team of the decade tournaments.
The 1992-93 season marked the beginning of the pigeon logo era. It marked the 100th year anniversary of the Stanley Cup. It was the final year that the Patrick, Adams, Norris and Smythe Divisions...AND the Wales and Campbell Conferences were in existence. (Seriously, looking back on it, there was simply no reason to scrap these division names from the ledger. They gave hockey that unique aura. Now, we have stupid geographical names. And we have home teams wearing their dark jerseys...stupid. We get robbed every year from seeing Montreal coming to the Mellon in their reds (below). I made it a point to go to a Canadiens game every year.) Teemu Selanne burst onto the NHL scene with a rookie-record 76 goals. The Gary Bettman era began. NHL record was set for most 100-point scorers and 50-goal scorers in a season. The Ottawa Senators' expansion year resulted in a 10-70-4 record. The Montreal Canadiens defeated the Los Angeles Kings in five games to win the Cup. Guess who scored overtime goals in consecutive games for Montreal during the Finals?

John LeClair

Penguins Statistics
  • Record: 56-21-7 (119 points, President's Trophy)
  • Lemieux, Stevens, Tocchet and Francis reached the 100-point mark
  • Lemieux misses 24 games after being diagnosed with Hodgkin's Disease. He returned in early March, 12 points behind Lafontaine in the scoring race. What ensued was the most ridiculous scoring-binge in the history of Western Civilization: 30 G, 26 A, 56 Points in 20 games. Lemieux (60 Games: 69G, 91A, 160 Points, 2.66 Points per game) wins the scoring title by 12 points.
  • Penguins reel off 17 consecutive victories at the end of the season
  • Tom Barrasso: 43-14-5 (3.01 GAA)




Game 7 - Islanders vs. Penguins
Kevin Stevens breaks his face. The Penguins pull Barrasso and tie the game with 1:00 left. I don't think I've heard the Mellon louder than this. Vintage Mike Lange. Oh, and Uwe Krupp played on this Islanders team.

We are working feverishly to bring better-quality videos to the site. We have all the 91, 92 and 93 playoffs goals on tape. You'll be in for a treat.

Friday, September 22, 2006

ESPN Game Recap

From what I've read, the Pens played a pretty good game tonight sans Sidney Crosby. Also, the Capitals were without Alexander Ovechkin. One can easily picture Crosby, Ovechkin and Malkin drinkin beer/banging chicks in the press box.
The game was tied at 3 going into the third period. Sergei Gonchar scored to make it 4-3, but the Capitals' Jakub Klepis tied the game with about a minute left. In overtime, the ghost of Penguins past came back to haunt us as Matt Bradley(pictured at bottom) scored to send the eight people in attendance home, dejected.

Capital Alexandre Giroux giving LeClair a present from Malkin.


Stats
  • Sergei Gonchar - 2 PP Goals
  • Ryan Whitney - 2 A
  • Dominic Moore - 1 G
  • Jakub Klepis - 1 G, 2 A
  • Marc-Andre Fleury - 19 saves on 24 shots
  • Powerplay - WAS (3 for 10) PIT (2 for 13)
Miscellaneous
  • Sergei Gonchar with two more goals.
  • Dominic Moore scores. We saw the goal on the news. It was nasty. He was looking solid against Philadelphia, too.
  • Fleury with some weak stats, but it's hard to comment on him without seeing the game.



Next Game: Tomorrow night (9/23). Against Buffalo. Hamilton, Ontario.

The Penguins are rolling out the brown carpet tonight as they kick off another season of hockey at the Mellon Arena. Tonight's pre-season game against the Capitals (7:30 PM) will not be on the radio or television. Crosby is not dressing for tonight's game, either.

When we talk about the Capitals, the following topics cannot be ignored:

  • The flocks of Pens fans making the trip to Washington for playoff games.
  • The Penguins' dominance: 6 playoff series wins in 7 tries (since 1991).
"We Suck."

  • Randy Gilhen jumping on as an extra attacker during a delayed penalty call and scoring late in Game 2 of the 1991 Patrick Division Finals to tie the game up at 6. Kevin Stevens ended up winning the game in overtime.
  • 1/26/92 - Ron Hogarth, esteemed NHL referee, hands out game misconducts to Lemieux, Stevens and Jagr in a 6-4 loss at Washington.


  • Down three games to one in the 1992 Patrick Division Semi-Finals, The Pens come roaring back to force (and win) a Game 7.


  • 4/24 - 25/96 - EPIC GAME. Petr Nedved scores with 45 seconds remaining in the 4th overtime of Game 4 to tie the series at two. Mario Lemieux had slashed Todd Krygier earlier and received a game misconduct. Lemieux spent the overtime periods setting up food for the players between periods. The Pens eventually win the series in six games.
4/25/96 - 2:22 AM
The look on Sergei Gonchar's face is priceless.
  • 2001 - The Pens ride Johan Hedberg's sterling goaltending past the Capitals in six games.
  • Future: Ovechkin vs. Crosby/Malkin. Game 7. Eastern Conference Finals.

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