Archive for December, 2009

Hedberg, Thrashers survive Moose season in Manhattan

Was Monday night the opening of Moose season in Manhattan?

It sure seemed that way as Johan Hedberg took shot after shot during Monday night’s 3-2 shootout win in New York. In fact…the Rangers fired off 48 rounds at the Moose, who turned away 46 of them.

The shots came early…often…and constantly.

Johan Hedberg was everywhere...on the ice...on the puck...on the players (AP Photo/Paul J. Bereswill)

Johan Hedberg was everywhere…on the ice…on the puck…on the players (AP Photo/Paul J. Bereswill)

First there was the highway robbery committed by Hedberg on Ales Kotalik in the first period…diving to his right to get the paddle down to deny the goal. Then there was the stuffing of Christopher Higgins during a Ranger 2 on OH MY GAWD break with about two and a half minutes left in the third to preserve the 2-2 tie.

In between, the Moose put the Thrashers on his back and they rode him once again to a win.

All four goals scored came during special teams play. In the first period, Slava Kozlov score his sixth goal of the year while the Thrashers were on the power play. At …

Continue reading Hedberg, Thrashers survive Moose season in Manhattan »

Time for Thrashers to ride the Moose

Last night’s win over Montreal is likely to be remembered for the overtime goal that Ilya Kovalchuk delivered to win the game. But the match may well have never gotten past the 60-minute mark if not for the outstanding save that Johan Hedberg made on Sergei Kostitsyn during a short-handed breakaway during the third period.

Moose got the right pad out far enough to keep Kostitsyn from sliding the puck in nearside and the 3-3 tie was preserved.

Now, Hedberg did not have one his most stellar performances on this night. The Thrashers’ defense held the Canadiens to but 19 shots on goals during three periods plus a buck-eighteen of overtime and three got past him…a couple he would certainly like to have back. But when the big save needed to be made…Moose shut the door.

No goal for YOU! Headberg denied Sergei Kostitsyn on his short-handed breakawy to keep the game tied (AP Photo/John Amis)

No goal for YOU! Hedberg denies Sergei Kostitsyn on his 3rd period short-handed breakaway. The timely save kept the game tied at 3-3 (AP Photo/John Amis)

In his last nine starts, Hedberg has won seven time …

Continue reading Time for Thrashers to ride the Moose »

Gather around the coffee pot and discuss latest Thrashers loss

As Rawhide’s fellow bloggers awake after another late night of Thrashers hockey and make their way into the on-line chat room, the blog host is busy manning the coffee pots in the cyber-coffee café. Its cold outside this morning, but the coffee here is good and hot

Ah, good morning there sleepy-heads…hop up on the stool and I’ll have your coffee right up for ya. How do ya take it? Cream?…Sugar?…Heck, maybe given the way the Thrashers luck has turned, a bit of whiskey mixed in is what’s called for? I mean, for medicinal purposes, of course.

Me? I just take mine black.

Ya know…picking the coffee pot up off the burners and returning to the counter to fill your cups… staying up late to watch a hometown team play on the west coast reminds me of the early 1990’s when the Braves were beginning that great run of theirs. Being in the Western Divison of the NL those days, they played many games out in L.A., San Diego and San Francisco. There would be entire weeks …

Continue reading Gather around the coffee pot and discuss latest Thrashers loss »

Oh where, oh where has our goal scoring gone?

The Thrashers scored one goal last night in Calgary, losing 2-1 to the Flames. Monday night they were able to slip all of two into the net in Toronto…after they found themselves down 5-zip after two periods, that is. In three of the past four games they’ve scored only once and have a total of five goals during regulation in those four matches.

Dating back to the 2-0 win in Detroit, Atlanta has not been able to score more than twice in six of the last eight games…the exceptions being the 4-3 win against Florida and the 6-4 victory in Carolina, thanks to a 5 goal outburst in the third period.

That comes to a grand total of 18 goals in eight games plus five minutes of overtime…which is a goals per game average of just under two and a quarter, not counting the “pseudo-goal” awarded for winning the individual skills competition down in Florida last Saturday. This is in stark contrast to the offense that was pumping in goals at the rate of close to three and a half …

Continue reading Oh where, oh where has our goal scoring gone? »

Is it time for a ‘White-Out’ in Thrasherville?

Monday night’s butt kicking aside…the Thrashers are in the midst of a pretty good season. Their 15-9-3 record gives them 33 points, which is good enough for the sixth position in the Eastern conference heading into Tuesday’s NHL action.

That, boys and girls, is known as a “playoff spot”.

The offense overall is playing as well as we’d hoped…although they’ve hit a soft patch in the last couple of weeks…the goalkeeping has been better than hoped and the penalty kill has been outstanding. However, there are some areas of concern.

Todd White last scored on October 29 and has only 3 goals all year (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

Todd White last scored on October 29 and has only 3 goals all year (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

From my point of view, those areas of concern carry the names of Todd White, Bryan Little, Colby Armstrong, Christoph Schubert and Mark Popovic…some would even suggest Ron Hainsey as well. And I think it’s time one or two of them was shown the way to the buffet counter in the press box for a while.

After 27 games played, White has accrued a …

Continue reading Is it time for a ‘White-Out’ in Thrasherville? »

Thrashers blown away by Leafs

I missed the first two periods of Monday night’s Thrashers game in Toronto…the Divine Mrs. R and I attended the monthly JROTC Booster Club meeting, seeing how we are members and all and we go to support our tax-exemption cadet. I was planning on missing the third period as well…on purpose… and watch it on the replay without knowledge of the outcome. But I did that last Thursday when the Islanders were in town…and stayed up until the wee hours of the morning witnessing that debacle.

After the first period, however, I did sneak a peek at the score on my PDA…the one Smoothie’s girlfriend teases me about because it has a stylus…and saw it was 0-0 at the break. “Good”, I thought to myself. “I haven’t missed much”.

We hung around after the meeting for just a few minutes to get some questioned answered regarding our cadet tax-exemption, did some social “blah-blahs”…then made our way home. Upon arrival, I unloaded a few Christmas presents from the car …

Continue reading Thrashers blown away by Leafs »

Thrashers survive shootout in Sunrise

Shortly after Rich Peverley’s game-winning shootout goal gave the Thrashers a 2-1 win against the Florida Panthers…coach John Anderson and the rest of the coaching staff departed to the locker room with big, broad smiles on their faces. Their team had just stolen two points on away ice in a game they very easily could have wound up with none…and the team of coaches looked like they just wanted to get out of Sunrise, Florida quickly, before someone could find a reason to take the points back.

For much of the game, the Panthers did a very good job of keeping Atlanta’s high-powered offense off balanced by playing a chippy, grinding kind of a game. They held the Thrashers scoreless for the first 58:56…which is even that much more impressive considering the amount of time Florida played shorthanded in the second period.

A very scary moment for Thrashers fans came at the 2:39 mark in the second period when Toby Enstrom was driven into the glass by Panther forward Michael …

Continue reading Thrashers survive shootout in Sunrise »

Moulson golden in Islanders win over Thrashers

Matt Moulson’s hat trick Thursday night propelled the Islanders to a 4-1 win over the Thrashers…the loss leaves Atlanta with a record of 14-8-3 and sixth in the Eastern Conference.

Matt Moulson celebrates hat trick with his teammates (AP Photo/Gregory Smith)

Matt Moulson celebrates hat trick with his teammates (AP Photo/Gregory Smith)

Things started off fairly well for Atlanta as they jumped on top 1-0 thanks to Slava Kozlov’s fifth goal of the season. It was set up nicely by a great move by Bryan Little on the left side, sliding by an Islander defender to feed Kozzy on the far post.

Todd White was awarded the secondary assist…so it’s nice to see that line get something going after struggling for the most part this season.

Little almost got the Thrashers their second goal of the night a few minutes later, but his shot from close range clanked off the pipe.

But that’s when they were given three servings of Moulson and it proved to be too much for them to handle…and it caused the fans in Thrasherville to feel a little sick to their …

Continue reading Moulson golden in Islanders win over Thrashers »

Vokoun’s injury one of the most bizarre things I’ve ever seen

One of the first things they teach young-uns when they are learning to play the sport of ice hockey is stick responsibility. When you have that piece of wood…or graphite…in your hands, it can make for a very dangerous weapon if not dealt with properly. Even if the potential injury caused is unintentional.

Last night during the Thrashers 4-3 win over Florida, I…along with so many of you…saw what can happen if this basic responsibility lesson is not adhered to by way of the nasty accident that happened after Ilya Kovalchuk’s goal. Obviously upset from being beaten by Kovy on the breakaway, defenseman Keith Ballard sought to take his frustration out on the goalpost with his stick.

Moments after Ilya Kovalchuk's goal, Florida defenseman Keith Ballard accidently strikes goalie Tomas Vokoun in the head with his stick (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Moments after Ilya Kovalchuk's goal, Florida defenseman Keith Ballard accidentally strikes goalie Tomas Vokoun in the head with his stick (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

It never made it there…instead it found goalkeeper Tomas Vokoun’s head.

Certainly, Ballard is not the first hockey play to …

Continue reading Vokoun’s injury one of the most bizarre things I’ve ever seen »