Kovy scores again in loss to Senators

Three games played…five goals and six points for Ilya Kovalchuk. Let’s see, that puts him on pace for…what…137 goals and 164 points?

Yeah, I’ll take that!

Unfortunately, unlike the first two games, the captain’s efforts did not help the Thrashers to a win as Atlanta fell to the Ottawa Senators 4-2 on Saturday night. Video highlights can be seen here.

Things did not exactly start off swimmingly in Canada’s capital…the Thrashers falling behind 2-0 with only 145 seconds having elapsed from the game clock. Alex Kovalev was first to score only 43 seconds in when, according to Dan Kamal, Ondrej Pavelec was “out of position”. Jarkko Ruutu then made it 2-0 Senators at the 2:25 mark of the first…it was just Ottawa’s third shot of the game.

For the night Pavelec stopped 30 of the 34 shots faced in the loss…for the season he has allowed 9 goals on 104 shots faced, (.913 SV%).

But give Opie some his due…the kid stymied the Sens for the rest of the period, stopping the next seven before the break, and allowed the skaters in front of him the chance to get back into it. This is in stark contrast to the Pavelec of last year when he couldn’t seem to put early goals behind him and allowed games to get out of hand.

See also the brutal Boston beating and pathetic Penguins performance in December.

After Saturday's game, Maxim Afinogenov filed a report with the Ottawa police department claiming he was robbed by a masked man with in a red sweater,  (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Fred Chartrand)

After Saturday's game, Maxim Afinogenov filed a report with the Ottawa police department claiming he was robbed by a masked man with in a red sweater, (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Fred Chartrand)

Kaptain Kovalchuk led the charge for Atlanta, taking a Nik Antropov pass and burying it from the left circle. Kovy’s goal was his fifth of season and big Mo seemed to swing the Thrashers way. Defenseman Ron Hainsey then notched his first of the season to tie the score at 2 each with just 1:52 left in the opening stanza. Bryan Little and Pavel Kubina were credited with the assists…for Little, it was helper number four and for Kubina it was his third. Both have at least one point in each of the three games played so far.

Maxim Afinogenov was denyed a chance to score his first goal as a Thrasher when Senators goalie Brian Elliott robbed him from point blank range.

The Thrashers outshot Ottawa 12-10 in the first period…the first time they have taken more shots in a period than they allowed all season.

Ottawa reclaimed the lead early in the second on a power play goal by Mike Fisher…Anssi Salmela took the skate of shame as he was called for interference. It was the Senator’s first goal while on the man-advantage this season. Atlanta then fell again into a two-goal hole when Chris Neil beat Pavs at the 5:12 mark of the third.

Midway through the third, Slava Kozlov knocked the puck into the net, but it was he ruled played it with a high stick. To listen to Dan Kamal and Darrin Eliot tell in on the radio feed, it did appear that the stick was slightly below the crossbar, but the refs ruled otherwise.

Atlanta was again outshot for the game…this time by a 34-28 count. For the season, they have allowed 104 shots on goal while getting off a total of 77 on opposing goalies. That equates to an average of 25.6 Shots for and 34.6 shots against so far.

And now, we wait…again…for the next Thrashers game which will come next Friday in New Jersey. It’ll be the front end of a back-to-backer and will be followed up the next night in Buffalo when we’ll gather at TJ’s to watch the Thrashers take on the Sabres.

Give Blood, Watch Hockey

You know the old saying…Give Blood, Play Hockey. Well the Gwinnett Gladiators would like for you to give blood and then watch some hockey.

Monday October 19 is the date for the Gwinnett Gladiators Ghoulishly Good Blood Drive, which will be held at The Arena at Gwinnett Center from 2:30 pm to 7:30 pm. Participants will be able to win some great Gladiator prizes and team members will be available to sign autographs from 4 to 6.

For more information…click here.

Rawhide 3.0

October 10th marked the second anniversary that the knuckleheads at the AJC got the bright idea to hand this little blog thingy over to yours truly. This, of course, means that we are entering into the third year of me hosting the Iceman Bloggeth…Rawhide 3.0.

What would you like to see more of from Rawhide 3.0

  • More analysis of games and players! (40%, 19 Votes)
  • Stats! Give me more stats! (2%, 1 Votes)
  • Just post lineups. We'll take it from there (2%, 1 Votes)
  • Trixie! I'd like to see more of Trixie! (56%, 27 Votes)

Total Voters: 48

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I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who make this forum all that it is…both those who contribute frequently with your comments and those who simply pop in to read the ranting and ramblings of a simple Thrashers fanatic.

Since that initial entry…which was posted just prior to a 3-1 loss to Ottawa in the second game of the 2007-08 season… there have been 405 blogs posted which have included a total of 594,290 words…most even spelled correctly.

You, on the other hand, have helped contribute to 32,596 comments posted, which is an average of 80.5 per blog and 313.4 per week. Just since this past July 1, those numbers are 135.82 average number of comments per blog and 443.67 per week.

You guy have a lot to say…don’t you?!

Seriously, I have always told people that the best stuff that happens on this site can be seen below what I happen to opine. There are countless numbers of fans who possess endless knowledge and a deep understanding of this game that contribute regularly here. Most of you can even present your opinions and observations in an entertaining fashion and with a sense of humor that makes it all the more fun for everyone who enjoys reading…myself included.

On behalf of myself, and my lovely cyber-secretary Trixie, I would like to thank each and every one of you from the bottom of my heart for helping to make this such a fantastic place to discuss the Thrashers and the sport of ice hockey!

109 comments Add your comment

Nikita

October 10th, 2009
10:19 pm

First!

And kudos to you, Rawhide!

sisu

October 10th, 2009
10:31 pm

A rocky start for Pavs, hard to believe there was no tv at all…what a shame. To see Neil on the core sheet more than once makes me shake my head, he is not exactly a sniper….

2 and 1, I’ll take it!

ranallo10 (in AT)

October 10th, 2009
10:32 pm

I’m curious where we all rank in regards to quantity of posts by an individual and quantity of words by an individual.

Good stuff though Rawhide, you’ve put the past few “fan bloggers” to shame. Your dedication truly spoils us.

ranallo10 (in AT)

October 10th, 2009
10:33 pm

Sorry, I forgot to mention that my money would be on Brendan taking a clean sweep of both “contests” I just mentioned.

Brendan

October 10th, 2009
11:04 pm

In fairness to me, some of my posts are made in support of ongoing contests.

Brendan

October 10th, 2009
11:06 pm

The Aves and Blackhawks are in OT, if anyone is watching Center Ice tonight.

Brendan

October 10th, 2009
11:11 pm

Make that a shootout!!

Brendan

October 10th, 2009
11:21 pm

And what a shootout! It’s still going!! Through 8 rounds!!! Matt Duchene got his chance. But too many dekes. Andrew Ladd finally ends it! Hawks win! I think it went 9 rounds!

Bob

October 10th, 2009
11:39 pm

Givin’ up way too many shots, the boys need to tighten that up to have success

ranallo10 (in AT)

October 10th, 2009
11:47 pm

Hockey Night in Canada just showed some replays from the game and Bogosian destroyed Alfredsson (before being knocked around by four players for a little bit) with a nice open ice hit.

JLH

October 11th, 2009
12:01 am

How do they have replays if there are no cameras in the building?

English Teacher

October 11th, 2009
1:09 am

JLH – The courtroom sketch artists in Canada are fantastic!

Good work, BT/RH/IM. I swear, you need an extra blog just for all your handles!

Phil

October 11th, 2009
1:14 am

JLH – They have cameras there, but not as many of them. They use them to produce the in-arena entertainment. Kind of like what you see on the center ice jumbotron at Philips.

Problem is they don’t have as many angles as they normally would have for a TV hockey game. Thus, the replay ref didn’t get as many looks at Slava’s non-goal that he would have if the game were televised in either Ottawa or Atlanta.

jerry

October 11th, 2009
6:56 am

In case you missed it there are NHL Center Ice free previews on going until Oct. 24th. Check your service provider.

The Real Thrash

October 11th, 2009
8:17 am

Finally someone like Bob who sees what the real issue is: shots on goal.

Tom

October 11th, 2009
8:23 am

Okay, it is Sunday morning and last nights game story is not even up on the Sports page or the Thrashers Page. WAKE UP AJC. I know you have no respect for the Thrashers or the fans of the Thrashers, but are you completely willing to let another group of readers walk away from the paper by your shoddy attention to detail?

World Be Free

October 11th, 2009
8:26 am

Thanks to you Bill. You have a great group of bloggers that obviously respect your work. We all enjoy being part of what you have created.

Now all you have to do is get Kovy to sign. Are you up to the task?

Good game, Pavs needs to stand up. He’s a big guy.

Lee

October 11th, 2009
9:01 am

Great blog rawhide!!! It always is!!! Now about the thrashers, I’m not concerned, Actually, not at all! The only one thing that I think is safe to say, is that we didn’t play well at all in the first couple minutes. If they hadn’t scored then, I think it would hav been tied for sure. But no concernments or worries right now, we played excellent the first two game, and just slacked off a little. That said they are on a 5 game road trip. After all, they can’t win all their games!

ben

October 11th, 2009
10:05 am

I second that Lee!

The lack of coverage in this “paper” is becoming a joke very fast. And I’m not an AJC hater either. This is the best Thrasher team yet. Don’t look now, but D-Wad may be getting better at his job. And I was one of the earliest who called for his job.

Russian

October 11th, 2009
10:28 am

They played good game. We had a lot of moments. Actually our second line started to do something. But BIGGEST problem is SOG. Come on if you down by two goals on 3-d period and you were not shoot a puck You never won the game. They have to put more pressure to Ottawa. I hope they practice good for 5 days and show something in New Jersey. Good things that all SE teams lost yesturday. We are still on second place on SE division. JA has to change PP unit. White-Little-Slava are not a firts PP unit. Go Thrashers!!!!!

Brendan

October 11th, 2009
11:28 am

Ben, you touched on something that I want to address. On one hand, yes I do think Waddell is ‘learning’ after a DECADE in his job, including how to deal with inept ownership. So, he deserves some credit for that. Really, truly. I do suspect that Waddell CARES and is TRYING.

Do you sense a ‘but’ coming?

The concept I will advance now requires an open mind and HONESTY. And each and every one of you … is capable … of BEING HONEST. Here, now, the question: “Wouldn’t ANY GM who is housed, annually, within the lottery draft, and as a bottom feeder team, having one of the first cracks at waiver wire players, IMPROVE?

In other words, how BADLY would a GM have to suck … not to benefit from the lottery draft and the waiver wire? Wouldn’t “incremental progress” logically follow? I’d say, “Yes, it would logically follow, even though the lottery draft carries a history of BUST players, too. And waiver wire guys are also no guarantee of success.”

Pavelec is probably being “rushed” into the lineup. (Goalies take 5 years, on average, to develop.) And so is Kane. But they’re getting the job done, at least early on. Max Afinogenov is trying his level best, in a year where he has a lot to prove. Slava Kozlov is in his ‘contract year,’ as is Kovalchuk and Bryan Little, and Rich Peverley. And the last time I checked, Kovy, Kozzie, Little, and the Pevs Dispenser represent a good chunk of who and what the Thrashers are. Kubina is also up for contract renewal next summer. Almost every Thrasher has a lot on the line this year. I’m sure they don’t want Kovy to leave. John Anderson and Don Waddell are approaching the ends of their contracts. But if things go really well, they both might get extensions. This is really a defining moment kind of season for Atlanta. Either they’re on the right path. Or they aren’t, and it’s time to clean house at season’s end. Almost every team in the league holds GM’s and Coaches accountable for wins and losses. This team has experienced one (1) playoff year in its history of nine completed seasons. It has seen four (4) coaches come to power: Curt Fraser, Don Wadell, Bob Hartley, Don Waddell (for 76 games), and John Anderson.

I’ve seen Don Waddell teams at max cap, and league minimum. I won’t review it. I’m encouraged by the current climate and attitude of this team. Maybe moreso than at any other point in the franchise history. It seems, to me, that they finally ‘playing for one another.’ That’s a radical departure from, ‘when is my contract up?, so I can get the F outta here.’ If they can keep it going, great. I think this is still a ‘build year.’ But if they wind up in the playoffs, I doubt anyone will be disappointed. But it’s not as if Waddell’s name belongs next to those who have experience the same or better longevity in their posts, like Lou Lamoriello, Jim Rutherford, David Poile, and Ken Holland. Even Doug Risebrough, in Minnesota, eventually got canned. And Risebrough took the Wild to a Conference Finals during his tenure.

sisu

October 11th, 2009
11:29 am

It is early, the team lost a game so it happens. Next game is a few days away and they can stew on the loss. Overall I was impressed that they rebounded from a two goal deficit so easily…

Nikita

October 11th, 2009
12:02 pm

We should have won that game, pure and simple. Goaltending was weak.

SOG were, as usual, not great, but they were closer to acceptable. Basically, if not for the fish-flopping of Pavs on the first two goals, the Thrash would’ve been at least tied. But the last two also looked pretty bad.

Let’s hope the kid matures, Kari makes a miraculous recovery, Moose suddenly becomes competent, and/or any of the backups proves worthy for the job.

Rawhide

October 11th, 2009
12:05 pm

I’ll put this is the main body of the blog above also…but here’s a link to be able to see highlights from Saturday’s game.

Looks like rebounds were indeed the issuew ith Pavs…and check out the hits in the second period, both put on Bogosian and dished out by Bogosian.

five_hole

October 11th, 2009
12:13 pm

Can someone explain to me how in the 21st century, an NHL game can be played with virtually no television coverage, either here or in Canada? Listening to Elliott & Kamal discuss the review of Koslov’s goal, they said that the lack of TV coverage would impair the ability of the NHL to review the goal which was eventually disallowed. Was this game to unimportant to the NHL that they decided to ignore it?

I have little else, other than congratulations to Rawhide for the anniversary. Even if I disagree with you I always enjoy reading your opinions. Oh, and resign Kovy, Peverley & Kubina. NOW!!!!!!

ranallo10 (in AT)

October 11th, 2009
12:26 pm

Rebound issues and shots on goals…the same problems this team has had since inception. Awesome.

At least Bogosian lit up Alfredsson.

ben

October 11th, 2009
12:47 pm

i do agree with you Brendan on Waddell. If he were in a huge market with a large budget, he’d be average. His, or somone’s gallactic ineptitude has run a few folks off. His biggest problems are the lack of interest in any non-NASCAR / “Colldege Footbawl” in this town, the area the arena is in is seen as unsafe by a lot of people, the fact that cable has gotten relatively cheaper thereby it becomes easier to follow “your team”.

Look, he’s made bad choices. He’s made a lot of bad choices. He would have s job nowhere else at this point.

Here’s how to solve the problems:

Expand Gwinnett Arena to 17k. Move there. Transfer Phillips naming rights. Look, this is a pretty provintial place. Want proof, read all the “best ofs!” People are scared of coming downtown, and I say that as a downtown resident.

Thrashers27

October 11th, 2009
12:48 pm

Wow! Pavs did not look good in those low-high-lights. He looked like he did in some of those games where he was shelled last year. Difference now seems to be that the team playing in front of him is better.

I’m not ready to send Pavs to the Wolves yet, but I am now more anxious for Kari to hit the ice. More than anything, I’m ready for him to show that he has grown up a bit and can handle the rigors of being an NHL goalie…hopefully.

Sara

October 11th, 2009
2:01 pm

Pavs didn’t look so hot when I watched the recaps on OTF this morning. Monster hit on and by Bogosian – but Volchenkov was bound to let one of the kids have it. Speaking of On the Fly – once again VERY complementary of the Thrashers. Pointed out we’re a good team this year so it was a solid win for the Senators. Had to pull my jaw back off the floor after that one.

five_hole college football is going to control the airwaves on a Saturday down here so it’s not all that surprising SS didn’t send a crew. As for the Ottawa side, CBC has exclusive broadcasting rights to all Canadian games on Saturdays because of HNIC. They only air one at a time, and typically Montreal or TO games take precedence over Ottawa. Sens fans were pretty po’d but have said it’s par for the course.

Re: other hockey stuff – that was an amazing shootout in the Chicago-Colorado game. And how about that whiteout in Phoenix last night – most impressive!

Sara

October 11th, 2009
2:03 pm

Oh I meant to add more on Pavs there – I’m having a really hard time dumping on the kid on this given how this organization (mis)treats goalies. It’d be one thing if he had a real coach working with him on improving the aspects of his game that are lacking but no one can reasonably expect a goalie to enter the NHL completely ready and perfect when they have had no developmental work done at a higher level.

five_hole

October 11th, 2009
2:17 pm

Sara I understand. I just don’t care what Missoula/Boise St. do.

I understand that Sports South will not broadcast perhaps 20 games per year. I just think it’s incredibly stupid of them to not broadcast the away games. Limit those games not shown to home games, which would be a way of increasing attendance. But if you’re trying to promote the sport, you’d think that you’d show all of the away games. Just sayin’.

Glad Bogosian stood up for himself, but it would have been a good idea for Thorburn or Boulton to do it instead. Isn’t that their job?

Dwayne

October 11th, 2009
3:01 pm

Opie/Thrashers win, he’s “battling”, Opie/Thrashes lose, he’s “flopping”. Anyone have an update on Kari???

Thrashers27

October 11th, 2009
3:19 pm

Brendan: “(Goalies take 5 years, on average, to develop.)”

If that’s the case then Kari should finally be ready this year.

Baldheaded Thrasher

October 11th, 2009
3:40 pm

OP’s weakest link seems to be the rebounds, this has been noted by many in earlier blogs. OP doesn’t have to play great for the Thrasher’s to win, but he is going to cost them a few games. KL needs to return sooner rather than later!

aroha

October 11th, 2009
4:06 pm

This schedule is killing me. Play a game, wait 5 days play another game, then another 2 days later, then another 6 days before the next one. WTF?

I’m nervous as hell with Pavs in goal for us. Which doesn’t feel too differently to how I’ve felt in the past with Kari in goal! I’m anxious for him to get back, and hope that his long off-season hasn’t done too much damage to his game. But Sara you are right, we expect a lot out of Pavs but what is the org doing for him? I seem to remember a lot of criticism of Kari’s rebound control (or lack thereof) in the early days, and that has only gotten better with time. But Pavs has kind of been thrown in the deep end here. I hope he figures out how to swim.

I know I should be happy with a 2-1-0 start, but so far we’re relying on Kovy to lift this team, and that concerns me. I hope some others can start contributing to the score sheet so he knows this isn’t a one-man show. That said, thank God he’s firing early this year!

Re: DW comments. Really, there’s only one place to go from the bottom, and that’s up!

I, too am amazed by the lack of TV coverage for this game. I had no idea that any hockey game in Canada ever went untelevised!

buldog/52

October 11th, 2009
4:08 pm

the boys in atlanta don’t have to worry about being sent down to Chicago the farm team is 0 for 3 and nobody can score. 4 goals is 3 games Pav is better then the farm so he will stay in Atlanta. He needs to play he will becoma an outstanding goalie in time. Great reflexes. needs to be coached a little better. Not sure Atl has the right type of goalie coach to help him.

Dwayne

October 11th, 2009
5:52 pm

buldog/52…Atl. does not have a goalie coach…Nobody needs to say McCrimmon, or anyone else…well you can if you want, this is a open blog. But yall know what i’m saying

Dwayne

October 11th, 2009
5:55 pm

i meant weeks

Alan R.

October 11th, 2009
5:55 pm

Opie/Thrashers win, he’s “battling”, Opie/Thrashes lose, he’s “flopping”.

If you go back and look at previous blogs, you’ll see people mention how he’s flopping around out there. Fish out of water.

It doesn’t matter, win or lose, he’s flopping around. He needs far better control. We need a new goalie coach.

World Be Free

October 11th, 2009
6:17 pm

Is Peverly an RFA or UFA?
Dwayne, I;ve heard nothing about Kair, I just assume we won’t see him until at least November 1.
I think we all agree that Pavs needs to stop flopping around. Glovesave has had plenty of good observations about him. Don’t know if he reads the blog.

Sara

October 11th, 2009
6:32 pm

WBF – Pevs will be UFA after this season.

Dwayne

October 11th, 2009
8:00 pm

Do yall feel that managment(ASG) put this team together to 1)please Kovy.2) make playoffs.3)resign Kovy. 4)get butts back in seats? Now, having stated the above, and Kovy is resigned for big $$$, they claim that can’t do as much $$ wise next year, let some talent walk, like Pev, Kubina, Armstrong, Kari(much to the delight of Stendec), go a cheaper route and revert to the new 5 year plan?

Jameson

October 11th, 2009
8:29 pm

ranallo- I’m sure plenty will disagree, but I’ve been under the impression the past few years that the goalies’ rebound control issues are a huge impact on the shots against stat. Notice that when Moose is in net, we give up less shots.

Glovesave29

October 11th, 2009
8:41 pm

my alma mater wins
my wifes alma mater wins
Tech wins
Bulldogs implode
Falcons destroy Niners

$&@^$% Thrashers blow a perfect weekend…sigh, oh well

Hockey Biltong

October 11th, 2009
9:04 pm

So, in Ottawa,the Capital of all Canada, in the country where hockey began, there is no televised game??? What is wrong with this picture??[sic]
They surely must be ready to move the team to Gatlinburg, TN.

Tom Lysiak

October 11th, 2009
9:57 pm

Deal alert for anyone interested. Went to Dick’s Sporting Goods this afternoon and got a great deal on a jersey. It is the powder-blue Reebok (official) jersey with Kovy’s name and number. Originally $150.00. Marked down to $129.93 with 75% off for clearance. It came to $32.48 plus tax. Not sure when the sale ends though!

Dawson Devitt (D3)

October 11th, 2009
10:10 pm

Great blog as always Rawhide! Save for last game, Thrashers are off to an excellent start. Can Thrashers, Hawks, and Falcons all have good years at the same time? Let’s hope so. :mrgreen:

World Be Free

October 11th, 2009
10:16 pm

Biltong-you gotta wonder why there’s no TV in the great capitol of the great country-we all thought Canada was created on the 8th day.

Sara-thanks Dwayne-only time will tell where we go and how we get there.

Hockey Biltong

October 11th, 2009
10:24 pm

And so it was created on the 8th day. Being a Calgary boy I will blame it all on Ottawa…

JUSTIN PARKER

October 11th, 2009
10:48 pm

I’d like to read more about when/how opposing teams score. Like a break down of the play as to get a better idea of where it broke down or who missed their assignment. Maybe make it a permanent piece for our scores/success as well as when we get scored on. Your doin a great job Rawhide. Thanks for everything.

somaatl95

October 11th, 2009
11:54 pm

Unleash the fury! Believe in Blueland!

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
1:43 am

Thrashers27, I do think Kari is ready. Problem is, (1) he is injury-prone and (2) he suffers mental breakdowns when overused. Given that, perhaps Kari really is better as a #2 goalie. He cannot command big dollars with the stats he has. But, once again, Kari is RESTRICTED next summer … so … it’s Atlanta’s LAST CHANCE to sign him at RFA pricing. Not that his UFA pricing would be that much higher.

It’d be one thing if Kari had taken his team up on his shoulders and carried them DEEP into the playoffs, at least ONCE, in his career. But he hasn’t. He’s probably looking at $3 million again, next year. Hey, does anyone have the cumulative dollars that Kari has earned as the Thrashers netminder? There was the capped rookie year deal in 2002. That’d take us to 2005. Then in 2006, he signed a two-year deal, I think. That puts him at 2007, when he started doing 1-year deals in 2007, 2008, and 2009. I’d love to see that total. With Damian Rhodes, it was 3-years, $10 million, for 81 games. Anyone know, off hand, how many games Kari has played for Atlanta? I’m sure someone’s got a cost-comparative analysis out there on this one. With respect to Kari, that “5-year developmental program” is precisely the reason I never thought Atlanta should have even drafted him. They didn’t have the time, in 2002. They needed to keep moving the franchise forward at a faster pace. Had they selected Bouwmeester, D-men take 3-4 years, on average, and it still would have been a time-consuming process, back in 2002. To me, back then, the logical choice would have been Rick Nash, unless Florida took him 1st overall. In which case, we’d have to choose between Lehtonen and Bouwmeester, with Bouwmeester being a slightly faster path to great potential success. In that situation, if we go with Kari over Bouwmeester, we probably need to go out into free agency to snare a BIG DOLLAR goalie to fill the void until Lehtonen is ready. But that sends a “mixed message” to Kari, who … given his draft position, is the HEIR APPARENT, with the “franchise goalie” tag hanging around his neck.

Dwayne, “all of the above.” If what the Maryland Judge says is true, “That everything IS as it WAS back in 2005,” then there’d be no reason to go on the cheap. The thing is … I DON’T BELIEVE IT. I don’t believe everything is as it WAS. I’ll believe it when Steve Belkin kicks in his money and doesn’t file YET ANOTHER appeal in the case. In short, Mr. Belkin may still be ESTRANGED. But back in 2005, the Spirit Group ‘greenlighted’ a maxed cap for Opening Night. NHLNumbers.com had Atlanta’s Opening Night Cap at $53,255,000. Whether it would stay there depends on whether Pavelec and Kane stay for the rest of the season, or are returned within 9 games to their respective former teams. If Kovy likes what Waddell and the Spirit do on July 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, perhaps Kovalchuk re-signs with Atlanta on July 5, 2010. That team won’t be a low-salaried team. If Kovy re-signs, it means he finally got the players he wanted all along. Waddell and the Spirit were offering something like a 5-6 year deal, not a CAREER-type contract.

lee

October 12th, 2009
9:16 am

thx for the clips rawhide!!!! i was in pensacola for vacation and the tv didn’t even hav spso!!! i was so mad, and because of the time change, i missed the game on the radio. oh, well, i only hav to wait until friday!!! YAY!!!! ugh!!!

GaVaHokie

October 12th, 2009
10:46 am

Just thought I’d point out that 3 of the 4 goals on Pavalec were rebound shots.

GaVaHokie

October 12th, 2009
10:52 am

Regarding TV coverage… I would like to know what’s so important to SportsSouth on a Tuesday night, Oct. 20, that they can’t show hockey?

In fact, I can’t even find a website for SportsSouth.

RS

October 12th, 2009
11:37 am

The Thrasher obviously need to get off to a good start so that Kovalchuk will re-sign, and it’s nice to see that nobody is trying harder to see that it happens than Kovalchuk.

Midfield

October 12th, 2009
11:44 am

Brendan, I don’t think Kovy’s decision will rest upon the front Office’s moves in July 2010. I personally believe that he will decide based on when and where the Thrashers season will or will likely to end in 2010.

Smoothie

October 12th, 2009
11:50 am

I’m not sure what is more frustrating: the lack of TV coverage or the fact we have no games in 5 days yet are forced to play 5 games in 7 days starting Saturday.

Thrashers27

October 12th, 2009
11:50 am

Hey, Tom! Which Dicks did you go to…wish I could find a way to involve Harry in this entry.

World Be Free

October 12th, 2009
12:09 pm

Biltong-on the 8th day during Mountain Time! I have relatives in Toronto who tell me the same thing. My buddy from Mississauga gave me the business for that 8th day comment. He took my Molsons and made me drink Bud.

The rumors now have the Coyotes moving to Quebec City. I guess we will get a reprieve for a few days.

5 games in 7 nights-sounds like somebody is trying to make it hard on the Thrash. Hopefully our depth will hold up. We might see “Jimmy” real soon.

Hockey Biltong

October 12th, 2009
12:28 pm

Quebec City – A nice destination! And WBF, I cannot help you with your Molson “problem”. I can only steer you to better micro brews and hope you wiil drink!!!

polskidawg

October 12th, 2009
12:35 pm

Rawhide – yours is the best fan blog I’ve come across – regardless of sport and region. The sheer number of posts you provide is hard to imagine, putting even “professional” writers to shame.

I hope Mrs. Rawhide REALLY loves hockey.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
12:37 pm

Midfield, let’s say the Thrashers make the playoffs, but get swept out. Or lose in Five. Is that ENOUGH for Kovalchuk? I think it might matter to Kovalchuk what happens on July 1, 2, and 3 in terms of Kovy having “leverage” over the roster THAT WILL BE.

Remember, to quote Kovy in his OWN WORDS, “I have to do what the little slip of paper says.” If he re-signs too early, he loses that leverage over what happens in the next period of free agency. If Kovy agrees to some 5-year deal by Christmas, he’s OBLIGATED to play here for the next five years. No matter how CHEAP the organization runs the team and/or if it RETAINS Waddell. In Kovalchuk’s shoes, if I wanted to stay in Atlanta, I’d wait until after July 4th, just to see what the Thrashers do. I’ll still get my money from some other team, on July 5, 2010. They might even be MORE DESPERATE, in terms of the money offered.

Now, if the Thrashers make the playoffs, and bow out in Game 7 of the Conference Finals, I’d say that Kovy should be pleased by that. Is that a likely scenario? Kovy wanted the team to spend a lot of money on free agents. Kovy said he wanted the team to compete for the Stanley Cup THIS SEASON. Kovy said, “The City of Atlanta deserves it.” Nikki Zherdev left for Atlant, of the KHL. Instead, we got Max Afinogenov. Are these the moves that please Kovy?

World Be Free

October 12th, 2009
1:18 pm

Biltong-John Labbatt’s Extra Stock or Molson Brador
Just take the car keys away from me for 2 days.

Brendan-I just want him to sign soon so we can get to the other players that are up for RFA or UFA July 1, 2010. Kovy is smart enough to look around him and see where the team is at this point and where they will go in the immediate future. If he wants to put his foot on management’s throat, then sign a 1 or 2 year deal. Get management to make a commitment to sign they guys who are becoming available next season. Few temas make commitments (in the form of contracts) past 2 seasons at the risk of getting stuck with Daniel Briere/Brian Campbell contracts.

We have to think of the best interests of the entire team and if Kovy’s not truly committed, then line up some suiters in the near future. I don’t mean to sound so radical, but this is all starting to sound like Brett Favre.

Sara

October 12th, 2009
1:23 pm

Look – can we just call a temporary moratorium on critiques of Waddell/ownership, re-hashing of team history, and endless speculation of what Kovy might or might not do or what he might or might not think? Just for a bit here? I know the crap schedule means trying to find ways to “fill the conversation” but I am really sick unto death of discussing or reading about all of the above topics and I don’t want to feel like I have to avoid the blogs in order to avoid this chatter. This is stuff that we’ve discussed six ways to Sunday and at this point there isn’t one single new thing that can be added to any of those discussions … and frankly most of them are depressing. I don’t like being depressed. And I don’t like talking about “doomsday” predictions when the team’s playing pretty darn good actually.

So can we just enjoy the “now” for a bit and give “was” and “might will be” a rest for a spell?

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
1:33 pm

Hartford Thrashers?

…could be…

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
1:36 pm

Sorry Sara, couldn’t resist.

Anybody see what Pavs mask looks like? Hopefully he has a few more mature things than Mr. Kari.

I hear Kari brings his matchbox cars on the road with him. Kovy could be heard complaining to Waddell, “He brought his f-ing TOYS with him!!!!!”

World Be Free

October 12th, 2009
1:44 pm

One thing you’ll notice about my entries is I do not criticize management. I try to focus on the game and the players. Every fan base criticizes their team’s management. Personally, I save my management criticism for the Braves and Sabres!

My focus is on getting Kovy resigned based on what we all know today, so we can get going on signing the other players.

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
1:48 pm

This was taken from Wiki on Kari’s page:

-While playing for the AHL’s Chicago Wolves, the Hamburglar was featured on his skullcap, an homage to the nickname he received shortly after arriving from Finland, and becoming enamoured with McDonald’s hamburgers.
-He had a depiction of Lil Jon, who is an avid Thrashers fan, on his skullcap.
-In the past, Lehtonen has worn helmets featuring characters Yuna and Rikku from the video game Final Fantasy X-2, as well as Uma Thurman and Lucy Liu’s characters from Kill Bill. Lehtonen, however, is not a video game fanatic; ‘I’ve never played it. But I saw a couple of commercials about the game and just thought it looked awesome.’”
He also had a mask made featuring Optimus Prime from The Transformers Movie, which was never worn in a game, only in pre-game warm ups.
Current mask shows a depiction of Heath Ledger’s The Joker, with a stylized ATL featured on the other side.

It’s like he is f-ing 5yrs old!!!

Sara

October 12th, 2009
1:50 pm

WBF I don’t expect Kovy to sign a new contract any time soon. 3 games into the season is not enough time to make a determination one way or another about the overall direction of this team. They could win 2 out of 3 from here on out or they could completely fall apart. But I, as a personal choice, refuse to spend every friggin’ day from here until July 1, 2010 picking apart what Kovy might be thinking and what he might do – and especially when there have only been 3 games played. It’s just plain unhealthy as far as I’m concerned and I’ll go nuts.

We’ve already been over it and right now they ONLY thing to do is let the team play the games and see where it takes us.

Buzilla – the relocation talk doesn’t bother me as much – I consider that educating the ignorant masses. ;)

Midfield

October 12th, 2009
1:50 pm

Buzilla,

why so serious?

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
2:01 pm

I actually like the joker one, but I sense a trend from Kari.

The Hambuglar? Really? Maybe put down the McD’s and run your @ss around the block a few times. Maybe don’t collect the star wars glasses in your happy meals and concentrate on being a professional hockey player. Potential is the dirtiest word in the world of sports. The guy could (have been) one of the greatest goalies in the game. Instead, he is probably at the drive thru as we speak getting a #3 supersized then off to Toys R Us for a look at the new G.I. Joe mobile command unit.

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
2:05 pm

Big Willy Tilly,

Do you ever get access to players, coaches or DWad? I have obviously read your stuff with old Flame players and with Kamala and the douche from the radio.

By the way, has anything improved with the ex-Flames players and the Organ-i-zation since you shed some light on there douchery?

GaVaHokie

October 12th, 2009
2:09 pm

GaVaHokie

October 12th, 2009
2:10 pm

Rawhide

October 12th, 2009
2:17 pm

Big Willy Tilly,

Do you ever get access to players, coaches or DWad? I have obviously read your stuff with old Flame players and with Kamala and the douche from the radio.

By the way, has anything improved with the ex-Flames players and the Organ-i-zation since you shed some light on there douchery?

Zilla – It is very rare that I ever get one-on-one face time with the coaching staff or players. I’d love more, but I take what they give me.

As for the situation between former Flames players and the Spirit group, well…the fact that the Thrashers were so very generous with providing gifts and tickets for those in attendance at the Draft party at TJ’s, (Tim Ecclestone’s place), and that a rep from the team was instrumental in setting up the Party Bus event from their to Philips Arena for that game against the Sharks…it sure seems like the organ-I-zation has taken note and is wiling to use Tim and the NHL alumi group more.

There is more that can be done…but i think we got their attention last spring. And I give the Spirit Group big kudos for doing so as well!

Rawhide – yours is the best fan blog I’ve come across – regardless of sport and region. The sheer number of posts you provide is hard to imagine, putting even “professional” writers to shame.

I hope Mrs. Rawhide REALLY loves hockey.

polskidawg – Thank you, you’re far too kind. As for the Divine Mrs. R…she has been very, very understanding with my little hockey hobby. I owe much thanks.

World Be Free

October 12th, 2009
2:38 pm

Sara-the longer we waits, the greater the distraction the more potential to hurt the team. Look around,do we have the horses to compete?

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
2:39 pm

That is pretty cool. Is the party bus kind of like the old Jocks n Jills bus that used to take drunken bafoons down to Braves games? Or is it more like the Fur Bus?

Thrashers27

October 12th, 2009
3:22 pm

Wow! Tom was right…I just went up to Dick’s in Kennesaw and got a Reebok, new style, Kovy jersey for $35. Regularly $150. Hell of a deal! The deal only goes on the blue ones and not the new, red, third jerseys, but those are on sale for $129. Perfect Christmas presents if you’re thinking about that already.

Hopefully, my new Kovy Jersey won’t be obsolete within the next year….Wait a minute…maybe Dick’s knows something we don’t and Kovy is as good as gone. Nah…

Bluenote

October 12th, 2009
3:23 pm

Sara’s on target as usual. Couldn’t agree more that endless guessing what Kovy will or won’t do is a waste of time/energy on this board.

Let others contribute to the distraction. Either the team gels and it becomes his to lead or it doesn’t. Personally, I’m optimistic and like what I’ve seen so far, but an 80-game grind lies ahead. Time will tell. Speculation is futile.

Great to hear Rawhide’s Atlanta hockey history lessons from last spring appear to have been heard and generated some shame/action. Sure seems like there is space somewhere at Phillips to recognize/honor players and memories of the past….even if they weren’t Thrashers and to involve some of the former Flames.

It could might help some know-nothings understand hockey has actually been here quite a while

Rawhide

October 12th, 2009
3:53 pm

Zilla – Kinda like the Jocks-n-Jills deal. We’ll meet at TJ’s on that Saturday afternoon…then we’ll hop aboard a motor coach that seats about 55…filled with drinks…head on down to Philips to enjoy the game together….then the bus will bring us all back to TJ’s after.

Plus, there will be prizes raffled off on the way down…free tickets to upcoming Thrashers games as well as some lucky fan amoung us will ride on the Zaboni during intermission that night.

$55 gets you a lower level seat and the ride on the bus…$37 gets you an upper level seat plus a ride on the bus.

Here’s a link with all the info.

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
4:20 pm

Thanks Rawhide, but unless they can make the small trip up to Connecticut than I am screwed. Looks fun though. I am jealous.

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
4:21 pm

I know I am going to regret this, but where is GaVaHokie’s alter ego NASCARDave?

Here. I will fill in for him.

FIRE WADDELL.

NUFF SAID

Rawhide

October 12th, 2009
4:25 pm

Thanks Rawhide, but unless they can make the small trip up to Connecticut than I am screwed. Looks fun though. I am jealous.

Zilla – Well…ya know…Delta does fly from New York’s JFK airport at Atlanta on a daily basis. :cool:

Just sayin’…

GaVaHokie

October 12th, 2009
4:35 pm

I know I am going to regret this, but where is GaVaHokie’s alter ego NASCARDave?

Alter Ego?… or Arch Nemesis?

Alter Ego would imply that I argue with myself as two different people. :)

Oh, Buzz… enjoy your two Thrashers games in Fantasy this week. Since you felt so inclined to snatch up all the good Thrashers players from Rone and I.

GaVaHokie

October 12th, 2009
4:38 pm

For all you Fantasy Players… check your teams to see if you got any Columbus Day “presents”… didn’t realize we had two afternoon games today in the NHL.

Dwayne

October 12th, 2009
4:46 pm

So we can’t talk about Kovy resigning…OK, who are we gonna get for him at the trade deadline?

Buzilla in CT

October 12th, 2009
4:56 pm

I meant alter ego as you post under the alias of NASCAR Dave…making it your alter ego. Like Batman/Bruce Wayne only on a blog and you don’t fight crime.

Don’t hate on my fantasy team

Sara

October 12th, 2009
5:16 pm

Dwayne – I didn’t say you can’t. I’m asking people not to.

Short of him deciding to sign a contract at some point, NOTHING is going to happen with Ilya anytime in calendar year 2009 at the very least so why stress over it or even worse, go so far as to post what amounts to an ultimatum – either he signs really soon or he should be traded. I mean, WTF? I repeat, it’s 3 games into a brand new season and the team has won 2 of those 3. So why is there this need to rehash all the negative?

It’s bad enough this team gets disrespected everywhere else in the hockey world – it’d be nice to think one could actually come to a team blog populated by folks that are fans of the team and not have to read the same type of stuff I can find at any given moment on TSN.

Tom Lysiak

October 12th, 2009
5:58 pm

Thrashers27 – sorry, but I just saw your question about the location for the jerseys. I went to the one in Fayetteville. Glad you found them in Kennesaw!

Also, that is the same thing my girlfriend said when we saw the sale. “Dick’s must have heard Kovy is gone…”. Ain’t buying it, but I want to see a signing now.

World Be Free

October 12th, 2009
6:23 pm

My focus is beyond Kovy, getting the rest of our RFAs and UFAs signed. The closer you get to July 1, the harder it is to sign your UFAs.

I really don’t think any of the regulars are disrespecting the Thrashers. I’m trying to look at the big picture, what it may mean to the team as the season progresses. Please do not confuse me with TSN.
Let’s hope for a good season, knowing that there’s alotta work to do off the ice.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
6:51 pm

I second the motion to try to get Bryan Little signed, proactively. I think Pavelec and Peverley are eligible for contracts, too. So, is Slava, for that matter. And some other Russian whose name I cannot recall (rolling eyes). It’s probably not relevant.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
6:59 pm

Oh, yeah. Now I remember the Russian’s name. It’s Max Afinogenov. But he’s not eligible for contract extension until January 1, 2010. And really, wouldn’t we want to wait on that contract anyway?

I love the start this team has had. There’s a lot of positive things going on. Perhaps the most important of which is … this team is playing for one another. That’s a very good thing. Sure, shots on goal, and rebound control, are still languishing issues. But there’s 79 more games to play.

Smoothie

October 12th, 2009
7:30 pm

It would be nice to get Little inked to a new deal sooner than later, but honestly, the money will be there assuming this team plays well this year and spending to the cap is warranted in 2010-11.

Even if Kozlov comes back it will be at a greatly reduced price. In all likelihood, Moose will not be re-upped and Slater could become expendable. That’s $3.5 to $4 M available for Kovys raise. Without the bonuses, we are still below $49 M.

Kubina’s money comes off the books and his money will be used to extend Peverley and provide Bryan Little with the raise he deserves. Even if Kuby is paid to stay in ATL, we can hope Pavy makes Kari expendable and that the ASG is willing to spend as much as $55 M to keep all of our parts.

I’m most concerned about Peverley because a year of 20+ G and 35+ A production will likely muster $2.5 M or more on the open market. But let’s face it, if this team doesn’t win 40+ games and challenge for the playoffs, then certain players won’t be worth keeping around.

Dwayne

October 12th, 2009
7:44 pm

I would rather yall not talk contracts, I’m not say you can’t. I’m asking you not too.
Here is my earlier blog:Do yall feel that managment(ASG) put this team together to 1)please Kovy.2) make playoffs.3)resign Kovy. 4)get butts back in seats? Now, having stated the above, and Kovy is resigned for big $$$, they claim that can’t do as much $$ wise next year, let some talent walk, like Pev, Kubina, Armstrong, Kari(much to the delight of Stendec), go a cheaper route and revert to the new 5 year plan? I know #3 was *&!@#)% you know who, but the meat of the blog was what to do about the other guys, I know I didn’t mention Little or Kozzy, but I figured everyone would know what I was asking.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
8:15 pm

Like I said, Dwayen, I think the AS, LLC did it for “all of the above.” They do want to please Kovy, they do want to re-sign Kovy, they do want to make the playoffs, and they do want to play in front of a full house. If all that happens, then there should be excellent cash flow. It’s far, far better to sellout every game than not to. Opening Night was a sellout. The Thrashers are 1-for-1 in that capacity. If the team continues to play well, the attendance will be there. And the revenue will continue to be there.

There’s no reason, other than them NOT WANTING TO, that they cannot spend even more next year. Even if the cap shrinks. Now, obviously, if it shrinks back to something like $45 million, then that’s the most any team can spend. But I really, really don’t think it’d shrink by $10 million or more dollars, even in a recession or bad economy. The cap is $56.8 million now. If it shrinks, and many people think it will, my very UNINFORMED guess is … the new MAX CAP would be something like $54.3 million. I don’t know what it will be, and neither does ANYONE ELSE. I don’t think Commissioner Bettman knows.

So? So what? Why mention it? Glad you asked. The point of a PROACTIVE contract is at least two-fold, (1) you hope to save money on the player’s contract and (2) you hope to prevent the possibility of an RFA offersheet, where you could lose the player if you cannot match the other team’s offer. Obviously, there’s more reasons, too. I’d argue for (3) continuity of roster and team chemistry and (4) to demonstrate commitment towards the nucleus of players. That would show that the players are (1) VALUED and (2) CAN EXPECT to be re-signed and (3) be GIVEN CREDIT for their HARD WORK. Once again, I throw my full support around the organization’s efforts to re-sign a player like Bryan Little ahead of schedule. To date, the only PROACTIVE contract ever to occur during the Waddell Administration was Toby Enstrom’s. And as I recall, Toby didn’t have as good of a year as had been hoped. I sincerely hope that Proactive deal for Enstrom didn’t SOUR Waddell on the concept.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
8:33 pm

Sorry, I misspelled your name, Dwayne. I never addressed who I think would be lost, if those decisions have to be made. I’ve always seen Kubina as a straight “one-year deal.” So, I’d think he’s gone. I also think Colby Armstrong will pursue his best option next Summer. I’m sure Colby wants Top Six Forward minutes/role, and I cannot and will not fault him for leaving to a team that will give him just that. If Atlanta is willing, and Colby is willing, then fine. Re-sign him. Max Afinogenov is a player I see on a one-year try out. He may want to leave. Or Atlanta may want him to leave, at season’s end. Afinogenov can be replaced.

Pevs Dispenser is an interesting case. I think he benefits tremendously from the players around him. However, if those players aren’t going to be here, I would think his numbers will diminish. I’d bet Peverley wants to play Top Six Forward minutes, too. If Atlanta is willing to extend that offer to him, and Peverley is amenable to a proactive deal, then by all means, proceed. But if we lock up Peverley, we’d better surround the guy with talent.

As for Kari, I think he will get re-signed during the offseason. Might be another one-year deal, at RFA pricing. Or, maybe, just maybe, we could see a trade, since Kari is restricted. It’d be up to the gaining team to re-sign him. And, in the unlikely event of an RFA offersheet, that gaining team would be compensated with draft picks for Lehtonen’s loss.

Just as a general comment, not trying to stir anything, but it probably doesn’t look good for the organization for its former lottery draft picks to be cut, traded away, or otherwise fail to be renewed. (Stefan was traded, Heatley was traded, and we await the futures of #17 and Kari. Braydon Coburn was not a lottery draft pick, but he was a high-end 1st rounder, who was traded away. Boris Valabik is not a lottery draft pick, but he is a high-end 1st rounder and his future is being scrutinized.)

World Be Free

October 12th, 2009
9:28 pm

Watching the Leafs lose again tonight. They are so sad. Avery has two golas and the Ranger fans are really rubbing it in, New York Style.

I still cannot believe they traded two no. 1 picks and no. 2 for a one dimensional floater like Phil Kessel. Kessel isn’t available until December, which means he won’t hit stride until after January 1.

There’s a good chance the Leafs will have a lottery pick this year, which will go to Boston along with next year’s number 1. I guess Brian Burke left the need to make a deal, ANY DEAL.

Can’t wait to see TSN and the Leaf Nation watch Boston use their top pick next year to restock their shelves.

ben

October 12th, 2009
9:38 pm

@WBF 9:28

they’ll spin it somehow too.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
9:50 pm

Anyone watching this UTTER COLLAPSE by the Calgary Flames tonight on Versus? It was 5-0, Flames. They scores three goals in just over a minute. But now, it’s 5-4, with the 2nd stanza about to come to a close.

In other news tonight, the Washington Capitals, for the third time this young season, squandered a multi-goal lead to lose in overtime or a shootout. This time, they were entraped by the Devils. NJ got the equalizer in the 3rd period and then won it in the shootout on goals by Zack Parise and Jamie Langenbrunner. It was a tough break for Jose Theodore on the Langenbrunner goal. It looked like he stopped it, but the momentum of the puck carried on over the goal line. Parise’s goal was a beauty! Backstrom scored on the 1st Capitals shot, high glove, on Brodeur. But Marty stopped Alex Semin and then STONED Ovechkin, who desked wide and tried to go five-hole. There was daylight, but Brodeur stopped him. So, way to DENY our division rival another point.

Tampa Bay leads Florida, 4-3, late in the 3rd period. Roughly 3:00 left in regulation time. I just hope none of them get that dredded “bonus point.”

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
9:52 pm

That’s 3-2, not 4-3, in favor of the Bolts over the Cats, in Tampa Bay. Less than 3:00 to go now.

World Be Free

October 12th, 2009
9:52 pm

Ben-just like when they made Luke Schenn the next Bobby Orr.
Schenn’s more like Orr’s defense partner, Dallas Smith.

Dustin Byfuglein is a tank. Chicago-Calgary is a barnburner. Hey Biltong, where’s Calgary’s “D”? Bouwmeester looks OK, not a world beater.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
9:53 pm

Dang. Meszaros just got a penalty for TB. So, the Panthers will be on the PP essentially until the end of regulation. And Florida will almost certainly pull their goalie for a two-man advantage.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
9:55 pm

Weiss hit the crossbar for Florida with just over a minute left. The Panther net is now empty. There’s 58 seconds left now.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
9:58 pm

Brian Burke, Leafs GM, was interviewed in the 2nd period of that Ranger game. He said that some of the European teams have played as many as 30 games as a unit, whereas the Americans will arrive with one day to practice before they play a game. But Burke said the referees will be NHL referees and the games would be played in NHL sized ice surfaces, not Olympic ones.

Burke admitted that the smart money will be on Canada, Russia and Sweden to be up there on the medal podium. He said TEAM USA would fly under the radar. But that it’s his goal to bring home the Gold. In North America, Team USA has experienced its greatest successes. In the Salt Lake City Games, the Americans took silver.

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
10:07 pm

Niittymaki got the win for Tampa Bay, who scored twice in the 3rd, to defeat the Panthers. Bolts are 2-1-2 now. That should tie them with the Capitals for six-points atop the SE Division. Atlanta has games-in-hand, however. Caps are 2-2-2, I think. That’s three games-in-hand on Washington and two games-in-hand on Tampa Bay.

WBF, I think Toronto is out to an 0-4-1 start. I don’t want to project that over 82 games, but … that’s definitely inside the lottery draft. The Isles lost, earlier today, so that should put them around 0-1-3 for the season. I think, but don’t quote me, the Leafs would be, percentage-wise, the odds on favorite to draft 1st overall, if the season ended today. I know. Utterly laughable to discuss final standings in October. Got it.

Still, I renew my objection over that Kessel trade. They spent a lot on him. They, pretty much, HAVE TO WIN, or their best option at rebuilding goes to Boston, a division-rival of the Leafs. Again, I thought Burke would be “above” that. Boston also gets a 2nd rounder in 2010, and another 1st rounder in 2011. Is this the proper was to “rebuild?”

Before you Leaf fans jump all over my case, you guys gave up seven (7) goals tonight. And where are the Leafs, league-wide, on Goals Against this year? If you guys cannot get this number down, it’s going to be a big problem to win games. What’s the goaltending situation in Toronto?

Brendan

October 12th, 2009
11:01 pm

OMG, Calgary lost! Up, 5-0, they lost. The final score? 6-5, in overtime. Let’s not even talk about that ‘bonus point.’ If today is Thanksgiving up in Canada, the Turkeys are the Calgary Flames.

World Be Free

October 12th, 2009
11:17 pm

Brendan, we all know there’s so much pressure on anyone running the Leafs. It has been that way for a 30 years. In my opinion, only Cliff Fletcher has really been able to handle the heat. He made some trades that turn the team into a winner fast. Trouble, the NHL has become a limited trade league with the salary cap.

I don’t want to project them out too much, but the Leafs certainly don’t have the horses on their team or in their system to turn things around.

When it comes to free agency, they don’t get the “fisrt day” (early morning-July 1) free agents. They get good, compliment players. But alotta players don’t want to play under the microscope for fans that are constantly frothing at the mouth for a winner.

Hockey Biltong

October 13th, 2009
12:48 am

WBF, I watched Calgary beat Vancouver handily the other day. Probably thought they had the game with Chi-town locked up and just lapsed into “bud light”.
My main focus this year btw, is to get the beer guys to bring me an ale or a stout to my seat.None of this lager rubbish….