Thrashers not getting caught up in the moment

The Thrashers play their biggest game of the year tonight against Boston. Win, and they are back in playoff position with nine games left.

For their part, the Thrashers know the importance of the game, but are not letting themselves think too far ahead.

Here is what some of them said this morning after morning skate:

Todd White: “I think that for us we have to worry about how we play and don’t worry about the result. I think we played a lot better the last four games and the results took care of themselves. We have to get off to a good start. In the other games, we’ve gotten off to a good start and put pressure on the other team. That will be key for us.

“I think the biggest thing is how we start the game. When we were losing those games we were sitting back and waiting for bad things to happen instead of going out there and initiating. Lately we’ve done a lot better job of trying to make good plays and get good chances early in the game.”

Rich Peverley: “We have to focus on having a good first period. We’ve done that in the past and been successful. Right now, we are just looking at having a good first period.”

Johan Hedberg: “It’s an exciting, positive thing for the Thrashers to have this opportunity. We have to be surrounded by positive thoughts. This is what you ask for. You ask for a chance to at least decide your own destiny. I think we do have that chance. It’s up to us to grab that opportunity. It is fun. There is a lot of positive motion. The guys are excited about it. Hopefully, all our fans are too.”

John Anderson: “We don’t think about the implications of the game. We worry about how we play. We need to come out hard and do all the things that we want to do as a team. Whatever happens, happens. I don’t want us to dwell on the fact that it’s a huge game because then you start to squeezing your stick a little tight. We just have to play the game the way we want to play it”

I then asked Anderson if he preached that idea to his team,

“I told them that this morning. I put my collar on.”

Notes from this morning’s pre-game skate (also sent out on Twitter @ajcthrashers):

* Hedberg gets the start in goal.

* Same lineup. Chris Thorburn, Slava Kozlov (both nursing injuries) and Chris Chelios are the scratches.

*Thorburn was on the ice before the skate working with the head trainer on some drills. He is having lower-back issues. He came back for part of the pre-game skate. Kozlov, who was hit in the cheek with a puck at Saturday’s pre-game skate, did not participate.

60 comments Add your comment

J.B.

March 23rd, 2010
1:35 pm

well based on the quotes it sounds like everyone’s on the same page, so that’s good.

J.B.

March 23rd, 2010
1:36 pm

any thoughts from chelios about being scratched regularly now?

Kovalchuk - The FORMER NHL Superstar

March 23rd, 2010
1:36 pm

Bob

March 23rd, 2010
1:40 pm

unleash the fury

Fair Weather Fan

March 23rd, 2010
1:44 pm

StubHub only has 2 tix left for tonight – Can’t remember the last time that’s happened!!

Farel

March 23rd, 2010
1:46 pm

I can’t wait to see the game tonight! Go Thrashers!!!

GaVaHokie

March 23rd, 2010
2:10 pm

Watching from home tonight, but I’ll be at every game the rest of the way! Here’s to making those games worthwhile tonight!!

Terrel

March 23rd, 2010
2:14 pm

I’m not from Canada. What does “I put my collar on mean”?

Andrew Green

March 23rd, 2010
2:18 pm

SeatGeek shows there are still plenty of tickets left below face value. Don’t Thrashers fans want to see their most important game of the season?

Sir_heady

March 23rd, 2010
2:19 pm

FINISH THE DRILL BOYS- i’ll go out on a limb and say with considering everything that has happened in the past months and the adversity that has faced this team, that this is the biggest game in Philips Arena history.- CLAIM

Chris Vivlamore

March 23rd, 2010
2:22 pm

Terrel: He meant a collar like a clergy would wear.

Chris Vivlamore

March 23rd, 2010
2:24 pm

J.B.: Chelios is the seventh best defenseman right now. His leadership and locker room presence counts for something but his performance on the ice was an issue.

Terrel

March 23rd, 2010
2:27 pm

Chris:

Thanks. And I got it now. I did search google for “putting on a collar” and there was some chick describing how she was into bondage. fwiw

J.B.

March 23rd, 2010
2:31 pm

Chris – Yeah, I knew all that. I was more curious as to whether he’s p.o.’d about it. he must know he wasn’t doing well on ice though and i would think such a professional would understand and accept the situation.

Chris Vivlamore

March 23rd, 2010
2:54 pm

J.B.: Sorry. My colleague Steve Hummer talked to him this morning for a big story he is doing for the Sunday paper. Chelios seems to be accepting the role. Happy to be here and help in any way he can.

J.B.

March 23rd, 2010
2:57 pm

no worries. cool. i look forward to reading it.

Savannah Blueland Fan

March 23rd, 2010
3:05 pm

The team may say that they aren’t caught up in the moment, but the fans sure seem to be! ’bout time! Here’s a $5.00 bill that says Antropov scores the first goal within the first 5 minutes of play.

Fair Weather Fan

March 23rd, 2010
3:33 pm

Cheli signed my boys’ jerseys after a practice last week…Classy guy! My 6-yr old said, “Will you please sign my jersey Mr. Cherrios?” Cheli was having FUN at practice too! They did a 2-on-2 thing at the end where they’d wind up and shoot from goal to goal…..Never knew pucks going that fast through the air sounded like bullets whistling by, but they do! It takes guts to step in front of those missiles…

ATL Fan in NYC

March 23rd, 2010
3:55 pm

Any word on Kane’s status or when he may come back?

DWTOO

March 23rd, 2010
3:55 pm

FWF – You’ll find most of the Trashers are very good about signing autographs after practice. Stars and third liners alike.

Jimbo

March 23rd, 2010
4:09 pm

Come out smokin guys. I hope to be hoarse after this one.

Brendan

March 23rd, 2010
4:16 pm

Just having this ‘opportunity’ is a blessing. To be in this position is a blessing. It’s up to us, now.

Hotrod

March 23rd, 2010
4:18 pm

Lets go boys! Our playoffs start tonite.
Skate hard and leg burn every shift.
Bomb that crease with bodies and pucks.

Section 121

March 23rd, 2010
4:24 pm

Been a long time since I was this ready to go to a game.

“Playoff atmosphere” is used too widely because NOTHING compares to actual NHL playoffs for intensity – but I sure hope folks turn out tonight and get as close as possible to “Playoff Atmosphere”

GaVaHokie

March 23rd, 2010
4:27 pm

Terrel…

I then asked Anderson if he preached that idea to his team,

“I told them that this morning. I put my collar on.”

GaVaHokie

March 23rd, 2010
4:28 pm

Been a long time since I was this ready to go to a game.

Been a long time since I felt guilty about missing a game.

Fair Weather Fan

March 23rd, 2010
4:33 pm

DWTOO: Arty, Bolts & Reasoner also signed their jerseys and they’ll be proudly wearing them at Philips tonight! We got to the practice a little late, but I’m taking them back for another one. And I highly recommend the all you can eat wings buffet (on Fridays) overlooking the practice rink ($7.99 incl drink)….Baskets of fries for the boys and daddy had a couple of dozen wings…..Oh yeah!

Man, you think Arty looks huge on TV…..Try standing next to him!

moriler

March 23rd, 2010
4:34 pm

I expect to see some damn elbows flyin’ tonight. And that’s just in the lower bowl.

Brendan

March 23rd, 2010
4:59 pm

How would you compare Bruin fans to Flyer fans, Ranger fans, or Sabre fans? Don’t answer now. Answer me, AFTER the game.

Savannah Blueland Fan

March 23rd, 2010
5:45 pm

Fair Weather–I can only imagine it is akin to standing next to a redwood. I remember the first game I attended last year, I was sitting right behind the bench and while we were all standing pretending to listen to the anthem I got my first “real life” look at Bogosian and I thought, “My god, he’s just a child!”. I knew he was only 18 but it didn’t really hit home until then.

hawks

March 23rd, 2010
8:15 pm

4 games is all we could muster!! We look bad tonite!

Sage of Bluesland

March 23rd, 2010
8:28 pm

Oh well, Donnie’s boys are crapping the bed tonight…Better put the wittle fwags back into the closet next to mine, which have gathered dust for many years now…

Oh well–I’m sure many will believe the next round of bluster–and will endorse the excremental progress we are showing…

Reminds me of the monumental choke against the Rangers.

Frustrated, Inc.

March 23rd, 2010
8:45 pm

I tried to tell you that I have seen this trage-comedy before…

——————-

Frustrated, Inc.

March 23rd, 2010
10:44 am
Wait a minute I have seen this one before. Lemme guess…here is how it will go tonight:

The thrash will come out flat and will be down 3-0 after the first period. They will then expend all of their energy tying it up at 3-3 in the third period with 5 minutes left. They will then have a sloppy penalty and give up a PP. Down 4-3, they will pull the goalie and give up an open netter in the waning seconds to lose 5-3.

Such is life with this listless, rudderless, apathetic franchise….turn out the lights on another playoff-less season.

Frustrated, Inc.

March 23rd, 2010
8:48 pm

oh, tell me again how Don Turkey Neck still has a job? I have been asking this question for an eternity. Pathetic!

boo

March 23rd, 2010
8:50 pm

bye atlanta! So long for the playoffs and all the hype. I feel bad especially that WE are losing to a low goal scoring team. And guess what? Its 3-0 at the 2nd int bruins. Bruins are not even better than the flyers but great goaltending from rask. He is lights out! Aww well another crappy season!

boo

March 23rd, 2010
8:52 pm

Its a boston massacre! 4-0 bruins!

boo

March 23rd, 2010
9:04 pm

The thrashers SUCK! I wish we had better goaltending. It has been a letdown this whole season. And what are the thrashers having a hangover today? What did they do before the game? I never thought we would be losing to the least offensively minded team 4-0. Good job bruins is all i can say.

boo

March 23rd, 2010
9:06 pm

this is one of the games JA could say “our give a crap level was at 0″. Where is the freakin’ accountability when you need it? Jeez.

stendek

March 23rd, 2010
9:16 pm

Trashers donned their pink “We Are Girly Girls Who Do Not Belong In Playoffs” uniforms tonight at Loseland. Johan Moose Hedberg was Kari Lehtonen. The home team was disinterested from the drop of the puck to the final buzzer. Was anything on line? Trashers went through motions like this was merely a charity exhibition throwaway. Truly sad. No way to justify this type of apathetic uneffort. All good will I had built up for this group vanished this pitiful evening. Too hurt to toss out any decent barbs. Not much I can say about this heartless display. ++STENDEK++

Let's Go Blueskirts

March 23rd, 2010
9:23 pm

Sage of Bluesland

March 23rd, 2010
9:26 pm

Gwinnett Fred

March 23rd, 2010
9:30 pm

Just got back home – had seen enough after 2 periods.

I do have to disagree just a little with some of the comments. The Thrashers played a good first period into the second, but when they fell back by 2 goals on yet another “non-clear”, they packed it in.

Crowd was decent tonight & most of lower bowl pretty full early on (a dramatic change from a normal Tuesday night).

But alas, they proved again what I’ve known all along. They are an average team and when an average team plays like a TEAM, they can look good – when an average team doesn’t, they will get embarrassed. (example: the Hawks have the talent to win when they don’t play real well – the Thrashers HAVE to play well or forget it – tonight, well forget it!)

stendek

March 23rd, 2010
10:34 pm

Somebody PLEASE give John Petrino a Kleenex! Young. Wah. Nervous. Boo hoo. Could not execute a short pass. Sniff. Have not heard so many blasted excuses since those priceless Kari Lehtonen interviews! The Trashers choked. Plain and simple. There is no other way to say it. A do or die showdown on home ice and they go silently into the night. A 4-0 gag job against a team like the offensive impotent Boston Bruins is completely unacceptable! Surprised guys in blue remained awake the whole 60 minutes. Although I did notice a few Trashers snoozing on bench. This after two wins over the Philly Flyers? What in blue blazes is that! I love Johan Hedberg and always will. Moose was a sieve. Marshmallows galore. Thought I was at a Boy Scout marshmallow roast again! Pathetic. Smell a Pavs start upcoming. No choice since playoffs are in toilet! Very unhappy with this debacle. Guys simply did not care. It showed! ++STENDEK++

B. Thenet

March 23rd, 2010
10:58 pm

Brendan

March 23rd, 2010
11:22 pm

Well, it even felt like the 2007 playoffs. I feel terrible for Moose on that 4th goal. It was a simple dump-in, and he completely misplayed it, leaving a big, juicy rebound, which the Bruins player deposited in the back of the twine. It was clear, to me anyway, that it was a mental breakdown.

A week or so back, I asked Smoothie to track Moose’s goals against over the next five games. Coming in, it was 12 GA, in four games, for a 3.0 average. Tonight, add four more, for 16 GA, in 5 games. I had said that if it reached 20, then clearly there were meltdowns. And it if were 10-12 goals, that the 37-year old Hedberg, whome we ‘rented’ at the trade deadline, were really giving Atlanta a chance to win. Sixteen (16) goals against in five games isn’t horrendous. But nothing to write home about, either. We can’t say, “Moose wasn’t fresh. He just played back-to-back games vs. the Flyers.” That’s not true. Pavelec played the back end game of the home-n-home with Philly.

Right now, we must hope that the Bruins lose that game-in-hand. Philadelphia lost, 2-0, to Ottawa. So the Sens are getting back on track, with two-straight shutouts by Brian Elliot. Tampa Bay rallied to tie Carolina, then St. Louis won it for the Bolts in overtime, 3-2. Florida defeated Toronto, 4-1. Kovalchuk scored his 37th and 38th in a win for the Devils, 6-3, over Columbus. Montreal and the NY Rangers did not play. SJ finally got a win, 4-1, over Minnesota. Chicago shutout Phoenix, 2-0, in the marquee matchup of the night, for 1st place in the Western Conference.

I wouldn’t say the Thrashers playoff chances are over. Not with the Flyers falling apart. And I don’t believe in Montreal, even though, in preseason, I had them in the playoffs. If the Habs get in, I’m not too sure they deserve it. Calgary looks like it’ll get a regulation time win over Anaheim. It’s 3-1, Flames, with 2:00 left in regulation.

Hey, I’m sorry the car ride home was so melancholy. Perhaps, filled with angst and aggression. The key to this game was getting the 1st goal. And Atlanta didn’t do that. Being shutout, however, seems like a slap in the face. This team is the 3rd highest scoring team in the Eastern Conference. It should score on Boston. The thing that bothers me the most is … this team tends to have its worst outcomes and performances in front of the packed house. Games like this don’t make people want to (1) believe in Blueland or (2) return to Philips Arena. Not when kids need braces, private school tuition is so high, someone need a root canal, and college school loans are still outstanding.

You Guys Are PATHETIC!

March 23rd, 2010
11:29 pm

You sit around at your keyboards and actually pull for the Thrashers to lose so you can get on here and b!tch and moan! Frustrated, Inc is especially proud of himself for “predicting” tonight’s loss! Utterly PATHETIC!! You should go to a mirror and punch yourself in the face out of self-respect.

They didn’t phone this in…..They were simply outplayed by a team that was pretty much flawless for 60 min. Happens every night to at least one NHL team. They are by no means out of this thing. Philly has completely IMPLODED and seriously might not win another game out of their 9 left. That’s not a stretch either!

I don’t see #7 or higher anymore, but #8 is still quite possible. With Philly, it’s even probable. But you whiners and complainers won’t be happy if the Thrashers do get a playoff berth….It’ll probably ruin you psychologically like when Sage/bugman never got his poor wittle thwee e-mails answered by Waddell 8 years ago. He’s RUINT!

GO THRASHERS!!!! Some of us won’t slam the door on you just because you lost a game when there’s still hockey left to play….

Brendan

March 23rd, 2010
11:52 pm

It’s still there. The possibility of playoffs are still alive. The odds of catching Boston, if the Bruins win that game-in-hand, aren’t good. But if Philly continues to nosedive, Atlanta might catch them for that 8th spot. We’d certainly win the “tie-breaker” with them, having swept the season series.

Sage of Bluesland

March 23rd, 2010
11:58 pm

“…I don’t see #7 or higher anymore,…”

This is precisely why I keep reading!!! Thank you for the laugh–I needed that before I went to bed. Truly precious thoughts from a twue bewiever!!! (Donny and the ASG thank you for your continued support, too, by the way)

Goodnight all!!! Maybe you can dream about the playoffs? I hope so!

Hotrod

March 24th, 2010
8:02 am

Well all I can say about that game is the tires went all flat and junk.

puckhead

March 24th, 2010
8:45 am

Cancers should be cut out. It is one thing to discuss pros and cons of a team or express the emotions that come with great wins and crushing defeats. It is another to only join the discussion to berate others that do not believe in your cause. I find myself wanting Don Wadell to get a lifetime contract so cancers are forced to find a new mantra or better yet team/sport.

Terrel

March 24th, 2010
10:25 am

The team better clean up their drawers that they crapped.

Kovy's Agent

March 24th, 2010
10:52 am

This is a franchise in it’s death throes. I went to the game, seduced against better judgment, that they could actually deliver when their brief history says anything but. For such an important game, the fact they had to practically give away tickets (I got a $10 deal and it was a damn good seat) and yet the arena was still just 3/5ths full speaks volumes where the populace is with this team at present. No buzz, no electricity and when the first goal went in, the air was let out of any remaining enthusiasm almost completely. It didn’t help that the Bruins played a tight, aggressive forechecking game that further anesthetized the crowd (as well as the Thrashers apparently) as legit scoring chances were few and far between. How many times in the history of this franchise do they play Lucy to our Charlie Brown pleading they won’t pull the football away and get us believing, but alas we again end up on our butts? I’m afraid to say it but this has been a star-crossed franchise since the Heatley accident and I don’t see any exorcism that will lift the spell before it’s too late.

Terrel

March 24th, 2010
11:16 am

On the upside, I see Kovy needed two in the Devils win last night.

j

March 24th, 2010
12:37 pm

i agree, one loss isn’t the end of everything … sage is no sage, thats for sure

Frustrated, Inc.

March 24th, 2010
1:04 pm

Did I strike a nerve there, Ms. Waddell? Instead of projecting your anger on me because I had the forsight to see this coming down Peachtree Street, perhaps you should lay it at the feet of the Atlanta Spirit Group? Just a thought.

I’ll ask again…why does Waddell have a job again?

- – - – - – - – -
You Guys Are PATHETIC!

March 23rd, 2010
11:29 pm
You sit around at your keyboards and actually pull for the Thrashers to lose so you can get on here and b!tch and moan! Frustrated, Inc is especially proud of himself for “predicting” tonight’s loss! Utterly PATHETIC!! You should go to a mirror and punch yourself in the face out of self-respect.

GaVaHokie

March 24th, 2010
1:13 pm

Here’s the next four game match-ups for…

Atlanta… TOR, CAR, CAR, TOR
Boston… TB, CGY, BUFF, NJ
Montreal… BUFF, FLA, NJ, CAR
Philly… MINN, PITT, NJ

Montreal and Philly still play each other again in April.

BUT, if we drop any of those games against Toronto and Carolina, we don’t deserve to be in the playoffs, and certainly won’t be.

Russian

March 24th, 2010
1:25 pm

**to Hokie**
Correct. If Atlanta will not get 8 points for next 4 games. Thrashers will be out of Play Offs. I can take any combinations for this 4 Games -Regular time, OT, SO, pay extra money for Toronto and Carolina Goalies. WE HAVE TO GET 8 POINTS. End of Story :-)

EA

March 24th, 2010
1:55 pm

The Boston Bruins outplayed the Thrashers last night. It happens every night in the NHL. One team is better than the other. No team needs fans like some of you. Go Thrashers!

JR

March 24th, 2010
1:56 pm

the goal that killed them was number 3 with seconds left in the second period. any illusion that they could make up the two goal deficit was shattered. what caused the goal? a poor decision to ice the puck [not sure who]. another lost faceoff. you fill in the rest.

second verse, same as the first.

GaVaHokie

March 24th, 2010
2:06 pm

It’s easy to panic, but every year it seems some team is pulling their goalie in the 3rd Period of the last game to not only get the needed 2 pts, but also get enough goals to get the tie breaker.

This is the time we weigh the Possibilities vs. the Probabilities, but it’s certainly nothing definitive yet.

It’s already looking like the 8th team will have somewhere around 88-90 pts… fairly low.

Thrashers will need 15 of the possible 18 pts to squeak in.

Possible? Yes… Probable?… hmm.