Time again to consult with Magic-8 Ball for Thrashers season predictions

It’s that time again folks. Another summer has come and gone, taking with it the NHL offseason months. And now, finally, we are on the doorstep of another NHL campaign. As such, it’s time once again to weigh in with the official Rawhide’s Thrashers Fan Blog predictions for the 2010-11 season.

As was the case last year, I had hoped to be able to gaze into a crystal ball to see if I could properly prognosticate what the coming months will hold for the residents of Thrasherville. But just like last time, my procurement request was flatly denied by the AJC.

Tightwads.

But let your hearts not be troubled…they are once again allowing me to use the old Magic-8 Ball that has sat in the back of a storage closet since the late 1970s. I think it use to belong to Furman Bisher who then gave it to Jeff Schultz. Shultzie’s then used it to help him predict the outcome of Falcons, Georgia Tech and Georgia Bulldog football games.

Anyway, I’ll first review the Thrashers as they stand going into the season…then I make known my predictions for what lies ahead for Thrasherville’s ice combatants.

Since I believe the best way to build a hockey team is from the pipes out, I’ll begin in the goal then move forward.

GOALTENDING

One thing we don’t have to worry about anymore is when we might expect “Kari-Down ‘10” to begin this year. The good people in Dallas can deal with that now. In his place is Chris Mason, who started 61 games last year in St. Louis and compiled a record of 30-22-8 with a 2.53 GAA, .913 SV% and 2 shutouts. Those numbers represent an “average” season for him as his career stats are 115-86-1-26 with a 2.54 GAA and .914 SV%.

In games in which he has faced 33 or more shots, Mason has compiled a very impressive record of 38-16-9 with a .250 GAA and .931 SV%. That is a very important stat to consider given the history of defensive ineptitude that we’ve suffered though over the years.

Chris Mason was 30-22-8 with a 2.53 GAA, .913 SV% with 2 shutouts while with St. Louis last season (AP)

Chris Mason was 30-22-8 with a 2.53 GAA, .913 SV% with 2 shutouts while with St. Louis last season (AP)

Ondrej Pavelec will assume backup duties behind Mason. The 23-year old Czech has been, shall we say, inconsistent in the past three years with Atlanta. In 2007-08 and 2008-09 he was called upon after Lehtonen went down and started just 16 games in those two seasons. Last year he was given the starter role when “Kari-Down ‘09” began long before the season started. He performed well for a while, only to fall off shortly after Thanksgiving.

Overall, Opie has been less-than-inspiring while playing to a 20-28-7 record with a 3.33 GAA and .902 SV%. He has a pair of shutouts to his credit.

But this time around will be different as he goes into the fall knowing he’ll backup the dependable Mason and can grow into the role of starter over the course of the next couple of years. That, plus having a goalie coach…er, uh, excuse me…having a goalie “consultant” around might just help out a bit as well.

Speaking of consultants, let’s now consult the Magic-8 Ball.

Will Chris Mason provide steady, reliable goaltending for the Thrashers this season?

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“You May Rely On It”

Will Ondrej Pavelec’s play be less erratic and more consistent as he backs up Mason?

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“As I See It, Yes”

DEFENSE

A-T-L-A-N-T-A T-H-R-A-S-H-E-R-S.

Do you see any “D” there? …No? Well, that’s not a coincidence as there hasn’t been much “D” involved with this organization over the first decade of its existence.

Last year the Thrashers allowed an average of 33.1 shots a game to their opponents, only Anaheim and Florida surrendered more. The year before that it was 32.7 SA/G, the year prior to that it was a league-worst 33.9…you get the picture.

As I’ve been one to say, Atlanta goalkeepers take more rubber to the face than a possum on GA-20.

But this summer Rick Dudley has set out to change that. He’s brought in not only a new head coach in Craig Ramsay, but also an entirely new coaching staff. Their first job is to teach the players on the roster to play solid, responsible, respectable hockey in the defensive zone. You know…everything the Thrashers have not been for too long.

Toby Enstrom, Ron Hainsey and Zach Bogosian remain from the start of last season, and Johnny Oduya returns after being traded for last winter. But joining them will be Brent Sopel and Dustin Byfuglien fresh off their successful Stanley Cup run of last spring. Freddy Meyer or Boris Valabik will round out the seven-man defensive unit, but given their playing time in preseason…I would think Meyer gets the nod there.

Toby Enstrom will begin his fourth season as a Thrasher. He's played in all 82 games each year prior (AP Photo/Gregory Smith)

Toby Enstrom will begin his fourth season as a Thrasher. He's played in all 82 games each year prior (AP Photo/Gregory Smith)

Byfuglien’s transition back to defense has been much discussed and debated for the last several weeks. But he seems at home there and I have to say I’m far less concerned about it now after seeing him play during preseason. His presence there should help to make this blueline better.

Overall team defense is what new head coach Craig Ramsay will be looking to instill in these Thrashers, however, and that means getting the forwards to play their parts on our end of the ice. This too is something Thrashervillians are unfamiliar seeing in these parts of late.

Last year the Thrashers’ penalty kill unit played well for the bulk of the season, though it struggled somewhat down the stretch…finishing with an 82.2% PK efficiency, (16th in the NHL). Gone is Marty Reasoner who Atlanta relied heavily upon here, but Chris Thorburn, Rich Peverley and Evander Kane should play key roles along with the defensive penalty killers.

And given that goal scoring may be more of a premium than in years past for this team, killing off penalties at a better clip will need to happen.

Returning to the whole SA/G bug-a-boo that has plagued Thrasherville… one positive that can be taken from the 0-5-1 preseason is that the Thrashers held the opposition to fewer than 30 SA/G in five of the six games. The lone exception being the 2-1 OT loss in Carolina in which the Canes took 29 shots in regulation and 1 in 1:06 worth of overtime.

If this can continue into the regular season the Thrashers could find themselves playing beyond 82 games.

Let’s again go to the Magic-8 Ball, shall we.

Will this year’s Thrashers defense be better than the past several years?

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Signs Point To Yes”

Can they improve on the 82.2% penalty kill efficiency from last year?

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Outlook Good”

Can this defense hold opponents to under 30 SA/G for the season?

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Cannot Predict Now”

I think the Magic-8 Ball would like to give a better answer to that last question, but given the team’s history I’m sure it wants to see it before it believes it.

OFFENSE

For the first time since 2001, the Thrashers go into a new season without the ability to pencil-in the 45-50 goals that come with having an Ilya Kovalchuk on in their lineup. Gone also is the concept of designing the entire game plan around that one player. In its place is a team that will rely on several 20-something and 30-something goal scorers.

Included in that number are returning players such as Nik Antropov, (24 g, 43 a last season)…Rich Peverley, (22 g, 33 a last season)…Bryan Little, (13 g, 21 a last season & 31 g, 20 assists two years ago)…Jim Slater, (11 g, 7 assists in 61 games last year)…Evander Kane, (14 g, 12 a in his rookie season)…and Nik Bergfors, (21 g, 23 assists in his rookie year between NJ and ATL).

Joining them will be former Blackhawk Andrew Ladd, who netted 21 goals and 38 assists last season as well as 3 goals and 3 assists in the playoffs. Then there’s Nigel Dawes, who accounted for 14 goals and 18 assists last year for the Calgary Flames.

Andrew Ladd is fresh off a Stanley Cup championship in Chicago, the second of his career (AP Photo/Frederick Breedon)

Andrew Ladd is fresh off a Stanley Cup championship in Chicago, the second of his career (AP Photo/Frederick Breedon)

Also in the mix is Freddy Modin, who will provide veteran leadership… Ben Eager, who’ll provide some pop on the lower lines… and first round draft pick Alex Burmistrov, who was just signed to a 3-year entry level deal.

Last season the Thrashers offense scored goals at a 2.80 per game clip. The season before that it was an impressive 3.05 G/G. This year, to be quite honest, we may be looking at an offensive production that nets something closer to 2.65 – 2.70 G/G in my estimation.

What could improve that outlook? Well, the power play could have a better showing than last year’s 16.1% efficiency, (25th in the NHL). That’s not an impossible scenario, though, given that opposing defenses will no longer be afforded the luxury of just waiting for the Thrashers to predictably circle the puck over for him to one-time it at the goal.

Another place the offensive could look for help is the blueline. Last year Thrashers defensemen chipped in with 32 goals. Zach Bogosian led the way with 10, but it isn’t a stretch to think he’s capable of 15-20. Having Byfuglien joining the rush from the back could also reap benefits. If he could muster 10 or 12 from the blueline, that would be nothing but a bonus for this team. Last year he netted 17 while playing up front for the Blackhawks.

Again, to the Magic-8 Ball…

Will this team be able to at least match last season’s 2.80 G/G production?

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Don’t Count On It”

What about the power play, will it be better than 16.1% form last year?

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Most Likely”

SEASON OUTLOOK & PREDICTIONS

The contrast between this year’s edition of the Atlanta Thrashers and previous ones could not be more distinct. Whereas we are used to going into a season confident the goal production would be there but worried about a porous defense…many now look at this defense as much improved but now wonder where will the goals come from.

What does your Magic-8 Ball say about the Thrashers playoff chances this year?

  • Don't Count On It: Under 76 points (4%, 8 Votes)
  • My Sources Say No: 76-81 points (13%, 23 Votes)
  • Very Doubtful: 82-88 points (38%, 69 Votes)
  • Most Likely: 89-94 points (39%, 71 Votes)
  • Yes, Definitely: Over 94 points (6%, 10 Votes)

Total Voters: 181

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As such, this Thrashers team is going to have to find a way to win 2-1, 3-2 type of games if it’s to make it to the playoff promise land. Last season they led the league with 28 one-goal losses…a stat that will have to be reversed.

Mason will be solid in goal I trust, and Pavelec will improve his play with the pressure removed to be the go-to guy between the pipes.

And finally, I think the new coaching staff will provide a measure of leadership and guidance that will prepare the players better than what was the case over the last few years. This will make a difference, I believe, in those tight, low-scoring games.

All that being said, I peg this team for 88 points…say 38-32-12. They’ll be in a dogfight with Tampa Bay and Carolina for second place in the Southeast Division, I believe. But I’ll put on my blue-tinted glasses and pick the home team to win the title of “Best Team in the Southeast Division Not Named Washington Capitals”.

I think they struggle somewhat at the beginning, but under the tutelage of Ramsay, Torchetti and Stothers, they get their act together quicker than some may think and make a hard run at postseason.

88 points was enough to qualify for the Great Hunt for Lord Stanley’s Cup last spring, but normally that total leaves you on the outside looking in. The big question is then…will it be enough this season to earn the Thrashers only their second-ever playoff birth?

Again, I turn to the Magic-8 Ball.

Will the Thrashers make the playoffs this season?

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Concentrate And Ask Again”

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Reply Hazy, Try Again”

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Ask Again Later”

…shaking, shaking, shaking…

“Cannot Predict Now”

…sigh…

How the heck did Schultz get anything from this gadget?

229 comments Add your comment

kracker

October 5th, 2010
7:21 pm

I just asked the on-line Magic 8 Ball if the Thrashers would make the playoffs this year.
Answer: My sources say no.

Well, it’s not the real Magic 8 Ball.

Sage of Bluesland

October 5th, 2010
7:30 pm

Thrashers make the playoffs? Oh, heavens no they won’t.

Not with this ownership or senior “leadership”….Not a chance.

Lee

October 5th, 2010
7:35 pm

Nice blog. I predict that the Thrashers will either make the playoffs BARELY or fall just short of the last spot. Looking for a better season, but I can’t expect too much…

Drop the puck.

kracker

October 5th, 2010
7:46 pm

Regarding goaltending the Opener:

dankamal Just watched Coach Ramsay on Comcast. He was very high on both goalies, but reading between the lines, my guess: Ondrej Pavelec starts Fri.

Wow! That would surprise everyone, including I expect, Ondrej Pavelec. Maybe Kamal’s own magic 8 ball needed another shake or two.

ex-ex-STH

October 5th, 2010
8:07 pm

DEFENSE

A-T-L-A-N-T-A T-H-R-A-S-H-E-R-S.

A-T-L-A-N-T-A T-H-R-A-S-H-E-R-S Do you see any “D” there? …No? Well, that’s not a coincidence as there hasn’t been much “D” involved with this organization over the first decade of its existence.

I fell off my chair with that line. Great post again, Mr Rawhide!! I bought season tickets again (how do you pass up $999 for lower bowl?) but not sure what is going to happen here. But….can’t wait for the Friday game to get this going!!!

BG33Brown

October 5th, 2010
8:46 pm

http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/news;_ylt=AtzHwl05kO1ptMkgXWOhXex7vLYF?slug=rm-nhlpower100510

Yahoo power rankings….thrasher #30. Ouch. Maybe some pointed this out earlier but now that there are 4 different blogs going on, I didn’t have time to read them all.

Nate

October 5th, 2010
8:50 pm

I can’t see it. NHL teams these days don’t make the playoffs without one or two stars unless they play sterling defense. And those two words have never been used to describe the Thrashers D. While I do see the defense being better this year, I don’t see it being “sterling” either (say top 10). I see more like 22nd in the league in goals allowed. Baby steps. An improvement, but not enough to compensate for the lack of goal scoring. Unfortunately, this team seems more like it was built with NEXT year in mind, not this year.

BG33Brown

October 5th, 2010
8:56 pm

It pains me to agree with Sage but I don’t have a good feeling about this team. I hope I am wrong….man-I want to be wrong.

mikey da mug

October 5th, 2010
9:08 pm

Well written analysis, and accurate prediction “Cannot Predict Now” – I think they’ll fall just short, but hoping we see live hockey here into May

ex-ex-STH

October 5th, 2010
9:24 pm

I bought my season tix again this year after a 2 year hiatus (who could pass the $999 lower bowl seats?) but I’m not too thrilled with the trade that didn’t happen for another top 6 forward. Something has to happen!

World Be Free

October 5th, 2010
9:32 pm

If Mason can play consistently then this team will be better than last season. Another improvement on last year at this time, is not having to deal with the “what will Kovy do?” garbage. we all seem to forget the soup opera that surrounded this team last year at this time. Beyond that, I have no prediction-ask me in 82 games.

Pavs stinks out loud-get a better backup

Brendan

October 5th, 2010
10:13 pm

Several regulars have YET to case a vote in the Thrashers Point Total Contest. Fear not! There’s still time. Precious time, that is now ticking. Tick, tock. Tick, tock. The carriage turns into a pumpkin at “puck drop” on Friday, October 8, 2010. After which time, all guesses will be IGNORED, LAUGHED AT, SCORNED, and RIDICULED for even ATTEMPTING to be entered. You can change your guess, by the way, all the way until puck drop. I’m estimating that will be sometime around 7:40-ish PM.

These posters, are currently without a guess in this contest.

Rawhide
Adam
Bob/Joe Friday
Brendan – I know. I’ll get one in. I swear. I’m waiting on that Zajac trade. You know, the one that isn’t happening.
Andrew
Buzilla in CT
Dandylions
Darren
Denny
Ex-STH
FIF
FrostyTheSnowMan
Get The Puck Out
h
JLH
Mehoff
mutton
R.Stroz
rightshot
Scotty
Sharon
Smitty
Thrasher Jim
Toby
Tony C.
Yung JB from MTL
12345

The range of guesses starts at East Point Bob, with 60-points, tied to 5th in the SE division, and 15th in the Conference, to “Mr. Willson,” at 100-points, tied to 2nd in the SE Division, and 4th in the Conference. James Brown changed his 103-point pick to 93-points, 2nd in SE, and 7th in the Conference. The first tie-breaker criteria is “rank within SE Division.” The SECOND tie-breaker criteria is “rank within the Eastern Conference.” Several posters do have absolutely identical guesses. That was bound to happen. We’ll crown multiple winners in that case, should they win. For example, “Derrick,” “Spud Webb,” and “Will L.” all have guesses of 96-points, 2nd in SE division, and 6th in the Conference. “Diego from Lilburn” has 95-points, 2nd, and 7th in the Conference. “Flames” also has 95-points and 2nd in SE division, but he has opted for 6th in the Conference, the “2nd set of tie-breaker” criteria. There have been sixty (60) entries already in this contest.

Who can enter the contest? Answer: Anyone makes a post at this website. What do I get if I win? The UNDYING admiration of your fellow posters. Maybe something else could be tossed in?? Maybe a free beer a TJ’s viewing party?? We’re not committing to anything, however.

Poster “Jimbo” still has not indicated a SE division rank with his guess of 85-points and 10th in the Conference.

Joe Friday

October 5th, 2010
10:15 pm

If no move is made to bring in a top line scorer, then this club’s potential is low 80s and very short of playoffs.

ex-ex-STH

October 5th, 2010
10:40 pm

Brendan, barring no trade before tomorrow’s deadline, I would have to say 80 pts, 4th in the SE and 12th in the East. This is subject to change when Duds trades for Langenbrunner – the next one to wear the “C”.

Rawhide

October 5th, 2010
10:40 pm

kracker – I hope my friend Dan Kamal is off on this one. Now, granted it is a back-to-back game situation and maybe both will play over the weekend. But I would start Mason opening night…he’s got to to be the starter unless otherwise proven differently, iMHO.

Also, look at the numbers the two have vs. Washington.

Mason: 3-0-0 w/ 1.84 GAA & .928 SV%

Pavelec: 1-7-0 w/ 4.10 GAA & .876 SV%

Start Mason.

Brendan – I believe I have entered my points projection. 88 and a second place finish in the SE. I have yet to predict their finish in the Eastern Conference, however.

Brendan

October 5th, 2010
10:44 pm

Ex-STH, you’re entered at 80-points, 4th in SE division, and 12th in the East.

Joe Friday, I’m right there with you. My guess is going to be right where you’re describing, unless a major move is made to increase goal production.

litz

October 5th, 2010
10:52 pm

Brendan – Rawhide’s guess is in his post at the top of this blog

- litz

Terry

October 5th, 2010
10:54 pm

I was all excited about Thrashers Opening Night this Friday until I found out about this weekend’s Dominatrix Convention in Vinings.

DomCon, here I come.

(No pun intended)

Thrashy Thrashy

October 5th, 2010
11:06 pm

Kane, Little, Bergfors, Antro, Pevs, Ladd, Buff, Bogo…

I’m expecting those eight guys to give us close to 180 goals.

Can the rest of the guys pot 40-50? We’ll see.

One thing I fully expect is for the GA/G to come down, and if that happens, the Thrashers will be in much better shape even with a slightly lower G/G total.

Brendan

October 5th, 2010
11:18 pm

Terry, that got cancelled and replaced by the “Bi-Mon Sci-Fi Con.” But the good news there is … girls put out just to get OUT of that place. So, it still could turn out well.

Rawhide, you are entered at 88-points, 2nd in SE division, and NO GUESS for Conference rank.

Litz: Thanks!

Brendan

October 5th, 2010
11:36 pm

Okay, I have the right to change this pick, if a move is made, but as is, I’m going with the same pick as “Polskidawg.” 81-points, 4th in SE Division, and 11th in the Conference. Dwayne is thinking, “Hey, that was my pick, too.” No, you had 3rd in the SE division, with 81-points and 11th in the Conference.

They way I figure conference rank, Atlanta has to finish ahead of the Panthers, Islanders, and Maple Leafs. That would make them 12th. But, I think the NY Rangers will find a way to finish below us, for 12th. So, we’ll be 11th, just behind Montreal, in 10th.

Red Light, I’m going to go with Buffalo to repeat in the Northeast, edging out Boston. I do have the Bruins in the playoff field, at # 7.

All this, of course, pending changes … if trades are suddenly made in Boston and NJ, etc. In the crazy NE division, I have Buffalo, Boston, Ottawa, Montreal, then Toronto. Habs, from Conference Finalists to outside the playoffs?? Sorry, I just don’t think Carey Price is the answer. They should have kept Halak. Is Auld the backup?

Derrick

October 6th, 2010
12:18 am

According to C-Viv the lines that were together today are likely going to be the lines that open the season together. Is anyone else as worried by this as I am? I really hoped that all the stupid line combinations we saw in the preseason were going to stop before the regular season started but I guess that was just wishful thinking are my part. Putting Stewart on a line with Kane and Peverley? I mean seriously? Not only that but also putting Hainsey with Sopel. We all saw how well that worked when they were paired together in the preseason. I really hope that Chris was wrong and we see some changed before we play the Caps.

Thrashers27

October 6th, 2010
12:41 am

Rawhide, I had no idea that Mason had such a stellar record vs. “Le capitales.”

Wouldn’t it be nifty if Mason was our “Nittymonkey” to the Caps.

World Be Free

October 6th, 2010
6:52 am

Pav’s record against the Caps is yet another reason to send him packing to CHI town and get a real backup goaltender in here. 1-7 vs a top flight team shows that he does not have the ability to raise his game.

hockeymom92

October 6th, 2010
7:06 am

Believing that my 2011 has to be better than my totally disastrous 2010 thus far, I am going to optimistically predict 92 points, 2nd in division and 5th in conference. I know I am probably dreaming, but that definitely beats reality – don’t ya think???

Budder

October 6th, 2010
7:27 am

World Be Free said (re: Pavs)…1-7 vs a top flight team shows that he does not have the ability to raise his game.

How many of those 8 games did The Cherry Picker , a.k.a Kovalchump, stand around the O-Zone Blue Line looking to one-up Alex O (which he could NEVER accomplish)? Forget goaltending – Valabik and Kulda for Langenbrunner TODAY! Yeah, I know, NTC for Jamie, but I still hope!

R. Stroz

October 6th, 2010
7:42 am

If Pavs is starting against the Caps, I’m warming up THE BULLHORN. Yes, Pavs the goalie who gave up a goal from the other end of the ice against the Caps last season.

Since Charmin was traded, I guess the Thrashers decided I needed someone else to yell at other than Hainsey the metrosexual.

The Real Thrash

October 6th, 2010
8:10 am

No mention of face-off percentage. That’s also another way to get extra chances.

Spud Webb

October 6th, 2010
8:23 am

Red Light….so the devils release Danius, soft as charmin, zubrus. Anyone know if that puts them under the cap??
And I’ll say it now………..DONT SIGN that guy, don’t be fooled by his size or skills. The guy plays like Max, a TON of talent, zero heart.

Buzzeng

October 6th, 2010
8:23 am

Brendan – I didn’t make your list of regulars, but I’m a daily follower in NC of the Thrasher blogs. I haven’t posted a prediction before, but will today. Put me down for 83 points, 4th in the SE and winning the tie-breaker with the Rangers to land 10th in the division. Looking at that, it looks a LOT like last year, with a minor improvement in that we finish ahead of the Ranjerks. I hope that we all lose to Mr Willson, though! Go Thrashers!

GaVaHokie

October 6th, 2010
8:26 am

I wonder if players will complaint, in the next CBA, that their over-inflated contracted cause them to be stashed in the minors or “loaned” overseas?

Brendan… dragging this over from the last blog.

You’d have to think so… Huet, Redden, White, Souray… all these guys are still capable of playing in the NHL. Their salaries made them problems for their teams. I don’t think White was even a problem. The Rangers needed to cut $3.1 million and cutting him made the most sense… you can’t cut Drury, Dubinsky or Anisimov. Christensen isn’t making enough money to free up space. It had to be White.

five hole

October 6th, 2010
8:34 am

Why would we sign a true #1 goalie, and then not start him in the first game (also a home game)? Am I missing something?

GaVaHokie

October 6th, 2010
8:41 am

Rawhide… not sure I trust that 8-ball. Did you give it any baseline testing, like…

Will Kovalchuk ever wear a Thrasher jersey again?
Will Stefan be an elite Center?
Does Sage of Bluesland like Don Waddell?

ChippersLoveChild

October 6th, 2010
8:57 am

I’m going 32-39-11 for a total of 75 points…. Sorry guys, just don’t see a good first year with this group. Hope I’m wrong.

GaVaHokie

October 6th, 2010
8:58 am

five hole… the only sense I can make of it is by schedule.

Pavalec has more experience with playing against WSH and TB. Next week, we have a West Coast road trip that Mason will be better suited for.

ChippersLoveChild

October 6th, 2010
8:59 am

Ah for 4th in the division and 14th in the East. I’ve changed from my original projection.

frenchy

October 6th, 2010
9:06 am

Who can explain why Valabik was chosen over Kulda? Kulda has nothing to prove in the AHL; Wasn’t he +30 something last season down there? We saw Valabik play one exhibition game and was that a nice game played… Bring Kulda back here…

World Be Free

October 6th, 2010
9:07 am

Budder-a goalie’s job is to stop the puck on a regular basis. The job of an NHL goaltender is one of the harst, if not the hardest position to play in all of team sports. You are either up for the task of not and Pavs has yet to show he’s the man. Kovy wasn’t here the last 2 mos of the season and Pavs was no better. He was beat out by a 36-year old
career backup last season.

Clarke MacArthur and Tim Kennedy are the poster boys for why you don’t ask for too much from your employer. Calculate your true worth and ask for the money fairly. I know, I know it’s pro sports. Think they would both do it different next time?

GaVaHokie

October 6th, 2010
9:21 am

frenchy… several reasons.

1) Valabik would have to pass waivers. Kulda does not.
2) Kulda would not be a starter… he’d be a healthy scratch most games.
3) Kulda is better off getting a lot of minutes in Chicago and continue developing than sitting in a press box watching.

J-man

October 6th, 2010
9:40 am

Brendan – My predictions
80 points – 4th in SE division, 13th in conference

GaVaHokie – I am pretty sure that Valabik does not have to pass through waivers because he does not have enough games played in the NHL based on his age at signing.

GaVaHokie

October 6th, 2010
9:57 am

J-man… that’s already been confirmed. Valabik and Meyer would BOTH have to clear waivers. Viv even mentioned it in his article yesterday.

Under “Roster news”

http://www.ajc.com/sports/atlanta-thrashers/thrashers-sign-first-round-661936.html

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
10:02 am

Rawhide, I had no idea that Mason had such a stellar record vs. “Le capitales.”

Thrashers27 – Me either ’til I looked it up. Obviously he did that while playing with other teams, but the bottom line…as it was pointed out by WBF….is that a goalie is paid to stop pucks. You either do or don’t. Against the Caps, Mason has…Opie hasn’t. Mason should be the starter until proven otherwise.

But that’s just me… shrugs

According to C-Viv the lines that were together today are likely going to be the lines that open the season together. Is anyone else as worried by this as I am?

Derrick – Yeah…me. My lines would look something like:

Kane-Antropov-Bergfors
Ladd-Little-Peverley (or switch Pevs and Little)
Modin-Burmistrov-Dawes
Eager-Thorns-Stewie

Bolts mans the press box w/ Jimmy on IR

Defensively I’d skate Hainsey with Oduya, Enstrom with Byfuglien and Bogosian with Sopel.

Meyer sits with Valabik serving him, Bolts and Slater snacks and beverages.

One more thing, gang…per Ben Wright tweet, “Alex Burmistrov will switch from his training camp number of 49 to #8 to start the season”.

glovesave29

October 6th, 2010
10:28 am

Opie was the beneficiary of a terrible d and no support from the forwards in the defensive zone – that cannot be argued. But his inability to get square to the shooter and his terrible rebound control also led to led to many second chance goals. Pavalec is the king of knocking rebounds straight into the slot and giving opponents easy chances for rebound shots against an out of position goalie.

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
10:30 am

For those who’ve been asking…and I include myself in that number…C-Viv says the Thrashers TV schedule will finally be released later this morning.

Joe Friday

October 6th, 2010
10:35 am

Modin-Antropov-Dawes

Ladd-Little-Bergfors

Kane/Boulton-Peverley-Stewart

Eager-Burmistrov-Thorburn

The defensive pairings were:

Byfuglien-Enstrom

Bogosian-Oduya

Hainsey-Sopel

Holy crap, those are the lines and pairings that coach is going with? I may have to revisit my thought process, low 80s may be a pipedream. Modin and Dawes on the top line, are you kiddin’ me?

cousin Eddie

October 6th, 2010
10:36 am

I like Bill’s line predictions.
I would like to enter contest with 102 pts. 2nd in division and 4th in conference. I’m usually dissappointed every year, so I am going to aim high with the hope of the same dissappointing results so they hopefully still make playoffs.

Jeff97

October 6th, 2010
10:40 am

Buff is supposed to be on 790 the zone in studio tommorrow morning. Do you think any of those guys even knows what kind of questions to ask him? They hardly ever talk about hockey. The only sports talk guy down here that has any sort of hockey insight or interest is Kincaid. pretty sad.

Rhytnmpenguin

October 6th, 2010
10:58 am

Kane and Mason on air this morning was kind of funny. The hosts didn’t know much about hockey…one of them didn’t even know about Kane’s KO. In general I would like interviewers to be knowledgeable about hockey but, in this case it was nice to hear Kane and Mason answer questions not related to hockey (like about the women in ATL).

Mikey

October 6th, 2010
11:03 am

Brendan, please put me down for 85 points, 3rd in division and 10th in the conference.

Please coach Ramsay, don’t start Pavelec Friday. We have to get off to a good start.

Smoothie

October 6th, 2010
11:05 am

Jeff – they’ll probably ask him what it feels like to be black in a white man’s game. Actually, I’ll give 790 credit as they seem to include Thrashers’ news nuggets in their hourly updates, but I haven’t heard much of anything coming out of our flagship station. But then again, I usually have to change over to Neal Boortz in the morning because they start talking about college football for the 27th consecutive minute. They really are useless. Aren’t they supposed to be able to converse about all sports?

Derrick

October 6th, 2010
11:06 am

Rawhide Those are the exact same lines I would go with. I even posted it on Ben Wright’s blog yesterday. It’s just too bad Coach Ramsay and the rest of the coaching staff isn’t as smart as we are. :P

R. Stroz

October 6th, 2010
11:06 am

At first, I was positive about the new coaches and players. However, after watching some of the boneheaded choices lately, I have extreme reservations.

Here are a few examples:

1) Modin and Antrpov on the same line.

2) Pavs starting on opening night.

3) Buff, not only moved to defense, but NOT parked in front of the opposing net for even one power play during preseason.

Plain and simple, these are just dumb decisions.

If Pavs is starting, I have reservations as to who the “real” GM of this team is.

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
11:09 am

Derrick – Well, great minds do think alike…and apparently, so to do ours :lol:

ChippersLoveChild

October 6th, 2010
11:10 am

I did my best to sneak in a hockey question with Dan Reeves on 680 yesterday… sadly they were having none of that.

ChippersLoveChild

October 6th, 2010
11:11 am

And I’m with Rawhide on the lines… they look much better to me that way and Stroz on the decision we have been making… it’s like we are trying to lose games, I just don’t get it… hopefully they prove me wrong.

R. Stroz

October 6th, 2010
11:15 am

If Pavelec was a baseball player, he’d get tagged out for sliding past the base.

Smoothie

October 6th, 2010
11:19 am

I will be, as well as many other paying customers, very pissed if I look down during the national anthem and see #31 standing in the blue paint. No offense to Ondrej, but you brought Mason in to stabilize the back-end and he should start the opener, period. Let Pavs play in TB on the back side of the B2B and then go from there. But chances are we’re gonna lose to WSH anyway and I’d at least like to have a fighting chance. Pavelec’s numbers against WSH are not just terrible, they are down right frightening!!

rob

October 6th, 2010
11:24 am

Anyone else think the radio commercial and slogan sucks? People who don’t know the sport will listen to that and go HUH? Bunch of uninformed unknowledgable uninspiring people running the advertising department. Must be the same people who redesigned the AJC Thrashers page.

Thrashers27

October 6th, 2010
11:25 am

Joe Friday,

My initial reaction is the same as yours to the lines, but after some thought, I’ll give it a chance before passing judgement. I mean, think about it. We’ve never had a defensively responsible scheme here. Maybe that’s what one looks like. There is defensive responsibility and a potential scorer on every line.

the closer we get to opening night the more skeptical I get, but all we can do is trust that coach konws what he is doing. I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt until he proves otherwise with the teams performance in the regular season.

I give it five games if we do poorly to start off and Buff is back on the RW.

Smoothie

October 6th, 2010
11:29 am

rob – yeah, I am totally underwhelmed by the slogan and so far, the campaign, but I am happy about the fact they seem to be using SS as more of a platform for original programming. And the fact that Coach Ramsay appeared on CSS for a chat with the press is refreshing as well. Not that anyone really watches CSS! ;-)

Rhytnmpenguin

October 6th, 2010
11:30 am

Buff has not been playing much in the preseason because he has some kind of injury. That’s probably he hasn’t been on the power play (hopefully).

Joe Friday

October 6th, 2010
11:37 am

“Plain and simple, these are just dumb decisions.”

It kind of sucks to watch, doesn’t it? I’m still perplexed by the move with Buff and no move to bring it scoring. It’s making me wonder if Waddell and Dudley were banking on some cap strapped team being forced to make a trade and Waddell with his poker playing ways being caught with his pants down again.

“If Pavs is starting, I have reservations as to who the “real” GM of this team is.”

I would hope that neither Waddell nor Dudley has input on that and it’s a coaches decision, but if you don’t realize Waddell is still the guy in charge here, I need to get me my own bullhorn . . .

kracker

October 6th, 2010
11:38 am

WHOA folks! Pavelec starting Friday against the Caps was merely a regurgitated (by me) tweet from Dan Kamal. It was his reading-between-the-lines guess as to who might start. Now it seems to have morphed into a fact that Pavs is the starter…as evidenced above by being included in a list of supposed bone-headed decisions by the coaching staff. –[Have I missed that Pavs has been announced as starting?]–

Blogs can be fun, but c’mon folks, this is the internet where a whole heck of a lot of the information is bogus. Excepting Rawhide and C Viv of course :)

Rhytnmpenguin

October 6th, 2010
11:45 am

Right on kracker! =)

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
11:46 am

kracker… – But you see…since you are a highly-regarded regular on this and C-Viv’s blog, your input carries more weight than others. You add in the fact that you were commenting on something that was tweeted by The Grand Kamalian and…well…I’m surprised this hasn’t been picked up by The NHL Channel yet.

Really, you have to consider these things before you toss something like that up on this blog…you could cause a riot! :cool:

Spud Webb

October 6th, 2010
11:55 am

I dont care who starts in goal. They both HAVE to perform. Let’s get to it, if its pavs, then lets do it. It’s go time…for sure.

As far as our “sports talk radio”…it makes me throwup. We (us bloggers) can do a much better job and 97% of the A clowns that are on 690 or 780. Not knowledgable & not funny.

Zombie Steve

October 6th, 2010
11:58 am

Have they brought back “The Fly” yet?

TrueBlue

October 6th, 2010
11:58 am

Riot Causer (Red Light)

October 6th, 2010
12:23 pm

Assumptions without factual basis often leads to errors. May I?

• Ramsay has never said that Mason was his No. 1 goalie. If so, show me where?

• Which defensive pair is more capable of shutting down an opponents’ top line than Hainsey and Sopel? Bogo and Oduya? Maybe! Byfuglien and Enstrom? Hah!

• Burmistrov’s signing doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll be here all year. He can still be sent to Barrie.

• Kulda is the odd man out because of Meyer and Byfuglien’s move to “D”, not because of Boris. If a young d-man isn’t in your top four, he’s better off playing 20-plus minutes in the A, rather than 10-12 here, or winding up in the press box. Those issues aren’t the same with Meyer (he’s used to stale pretzels and flat Coke) and Boris may need additional time to feel 100 percent. Knowing what you know about Boris, would you claim him off the waiver wire? (He looks good getting off the bus!).

• 92 points hasn’t been good enough for 5th place in the Eastern Conference since the 1997-98 season (no shoot-out bonus point)

• Waiving Zubrus does get the Devils under the cap presuming that Salvador goes to Long Term IR along with Salmela, but outside of the Devils top 6, things are looking pretty weak unless the youngsters step up. Two rookies on D, too.

And finally, after so much unbridled glee after the acquisitions of the Chicago 4, the Thrashers enter the 2010-11 season with more questions than answers on the ice, more answers than questions behind the bench, a budget mandate that leaves them last in the conference and the division, and 29th in the league, and the same three people involved in personnel decisions that were here last season. So, the hearty Thrashers fans are left to endure almost as much uncertainty to begin this season as they have in year’s past.

That same scenario exists in many NHL cities, Toronto, Manhattan, Dallas and Calgary to name a few. The main difference being that this team is attempting to change its style of play, which makes it even more implausible that “something neat is going to happen” this year. Improvement along the way is the hope. An injury to a key player can derail that hope unless young players can step in and perform better than expectations. Many here have said clearly that Mason, Ramsay, the Chicago 4, the style of play and the turnaround in one-goal games can make a difference in adding the 10 points required to make the playoffs from last year’s total.

If all 83 points had nothing to do with the presence of those who have departed from last year’s squad, then improvement in the standings could happen. I’m just not convinced that this team has the make-up for a 90+ points season. It’s like I am a Missouri resident…Show Me!

Smoothie

October 6th, 2010
12:37 pm

And I suppose everyone saw Colorado’s resurgence coming a mile away?

Red Light – anything is possible in this new era of salary cap-strapped franchises, thin bluelines and big goalie equipment, although it has been reduced a bit recently. If Mason or Pavs can get hot out of the gate and the T-birds get off to a good start, anything is possible in a conference that gave us the Montreal Smurfs ousting the defending Stanley Cup champions. In all likelihood, we’ll end up in the low 80’s in points, but this team has the *potential* to do better. We’ll see.

Russ

October 6th, 2010
12:41 pm

“Plain and simple, these are just dumb decisions.”

It kind of sucks to watch, doesn’t it? I’m still perplexed by the move with Buff and no move to bring it scoring.

R. Stroz/Joe Friday – This franchise was starting to look like a legitimate organization this off-season(although I was never crazy about the Byfuglien trade), but ever since the failaure to re-sign Kubina things have gone back downhill. Admittedly, maybe Pavel was set on going back to Tampa, but I find it hard to believe a 3 yr/$12mil. deal wouldn’t have convinced him to stay. And before you say that is overpaying please keep in mind this team is usually hard pressed to meet the salary floor. Now, management/coaching seems to be kissing Buff’s a$$ by letting him play defense because that is where he wants to play even though he would be infinitely more helpful up front. How far did the a$$-kissing get us with Kovalchuk? I made my prediction of 90 points with the assumption/hope that they would come to their senses quickly and move Buff up front, but if he stays on the blueline long, you are looking at about an 84 pt. season and another top five draft pick. Also, Mason should start about 60 games this season. That is what he was brought here for, period. At one point I was feeling very optimistic about this season, but it’s starting to feel more and more like the same ol’ crap. Hopefully, they come out flying on Friday and instill a little confidence in everyone.

TrueBlue

October 6th, 2010
12:43 pm

Saying that not resigning Kubina was a huge mistake is a joke. He was slow and made stupid plays most of the time. He has lost his step over the years. He is easily replaceable.

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
12:49 pm

Ramsay has never said that Mason was his No. 1 goalie. If so, show me where?

Red Light - To my knowledge he hasn’t. Mason as the number one netminder is my opinion. But I base that opinion on what I have observed and what the two have done in their careers.

Your comments regarding Kulda is spot on. I would have like to have seen him here, but when Buff went to the blueline that sealed his fate. He is better playing everyday in Chicago.

Red Light

October 6th, 2010
12:55 pm

That comment was not directed at you Bill.

Here is the list of games with no local TV broadcast scheduled!

Tues. Oct. 12 @ Los Angeles 10:30 p.m. No TV
Fri. Oct. 15 @ Anaheim 10 p.m. No TV
Sat. Oct. 16 @ San Jose 10:30 p.m. No TV
Sat. Oct. 23 @ Washington 7 p.m. No TV
Sat. Oct. 30 @ St. Louis 8 p.m. No TV
Tues. Nov. 9 @ Ottawa 7:30 p.m. No TV
Sun. Nov. 21 NY ISLANDERS 5 p.m. No TV
Sun. Nov. 28 BOSTON 5 p.m. No TV
Sat. Dec. 11 @ NY Islanders 7 p.m. No TV
Mon. Dec. 20 @ Toronto 7 p.m. No TV
Tues. Dec. 21 ST. LOUIS 7 p.m. No TV
Fri. Jan. 7 TORONTO 7:30 p.m. No TV
Sat. Jan. 22 NY RANGERS 7 p.m. No TV
Mon. Feb. 7 @ Toronto 7 p.m. No TV
Sat. Mar. 5 FLORIDA 7 p.m. No TV
Thurs. Apr. 7 @ NY Rangers 7 p.m. No TV
Sun. Apr. 10 PITTSBURGH 3 p.m. No TV

Joe The Joker Friday

October 6th, 2010
12:55 pm

“Saying that not resigning Kubina was a huge mistake is a joke.”

Not re-signing Kubina was a huge mistake.

Kubina in, Buff to forward, this team looks much better right there.

Joe Nielsen Ratings Friday

October 6th, 2010
12:56 pm

Red Light, is that no TV at all (meaning no opposing team’s feed off CenterIce) or no local TV?

Red Light

October 6th, 2010
1:01 pm

no local TV broadcast

Red Light

October 6th, 2010
1:02 pm

By an Atlanta based station! A day off for Matt McConnell!

Red Light

October 6th, 2010
1:03 pm

Or, 4,000 viewers in limbo for 17 nights!

Red Light

October 6th, 2010
1:03 pm

JF: Coming Friday night?

Smoothie

October 6th, 2010
1:08 pm

Thanks Red Light, for ruining my day. How does SportSouth not piggy-back on the FSN-West (or whatever Fox station it is) broadcast to bring us at least 1 game from the 3 game west coast roadie? I guess I’ll be looking into Center Ice. Interesting that our last two games are not televised, guess they don’t think we’ll be playing for the playoffs!

Brendan – is Comcast doing their free-trial again for Center Ice during the first two weeks of the season?

Red Light

October 6th, 2010
1:13 pm

Smoothie: I posed that very question to Matt and Darren last year. Why wouldn’t all of the Fox Networks provide the home team broadcast and pipe into the away team’s station, with the ability to sell regional TV ad spots? Frankly, I don’t give a hoot who the announcers are as long as I can watch the game. It makes no sense to pay travel expenses for crews, etc. when all fans really just want to watch the game. Has to be an NHL thing.

kracker

October 6th, 2010
1:21 pm

Most games have at least one team’s broadcast on CI.

Smoothie

October 6th, 2010
1:22 pm

Probably so, another bad marketing strategy from Bettman and Co. But then again, there could be some legal issues and I’m sure the NHL pockets their share of revenue for the Center Ice packages sold t/out the USofA.

Thrashers27

October 6th, 2010
1:28 pm

How do you not air the team’s last game of the season. If there are playoff implications involved that will be a giant mistake. I am continuously disappointed by Fox Sports South’s coverage of the Thrashers. Don’t want to cover every game, fine, but at least figure out what the key games to your viewers are. It’s not that hard. First game of the season: Important! Last ten games of the season: Hugely important if the team’s still has a shot at the post season. I think Carlos Mencea put it best when he said “Dee da Dee!”

Alan R.

October 6th, 2010
1:31 pm

But, I think the NY Rangers will find a way to finish below us, for 12th.

They’re already on to a good start: Erik Christensen is their top line center, at least to start the season.

Derrick

October 6th, 2010
1:33 pm

Smoothie Well Directv’s Center Ice free preview is until Oct. 24th. Not sure about Comcast.

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
1:39 pm

How do you not air the team’s last game of the season. If there are playoff implications involved that will be a giant mistake

Thrashers27 – I think it’s because NBC owns the rights to air games on Sunday afternoons for certain select games. They would pick it up if that game meant something to the playoff race I’m sure.

Russ

October 6th, 2010
1:45 pm

“Kubina in, Buff to forward, this team looks much better right there.”

At the time I thought this was going to happen I thought this team would be very capable of not only reaching the playoffs, but winning a series once there. Unfortunately, the decisions that have been made since then leave me thinking we will be on the outside looking in once again. Let’s go Thrashers!!! Please prove me wrong starting Friday night.

ChippersLoveChild

October 6th, 2010
1:52 pm

Hawks must be facing the Clippers at the same time as our last game of the season..

ChippersLoveChild

October 6th, 2010
1:52 pm

That or there is a popular demand for the Pat Summitt show that day.

Thrashers27

October 6th, 2010
2:03 pm

Good point about NBC, there, Bill. I’m still annoyed at the fact that it took so long for them to get the sched out and that there is still no indication of whether, or not there will be an HD signal.

Brendan

October 6th, 2010
2:09 pm

Smoothie, it’s been my experience with Center Ice that they always run the FREE preview. I doubt it will be different this year. The price, on Comcast, is $171.99. Give or take a buck.

Hockeymom92: Welcome back. You’re entered at 92-points, 2nd, and 5th.

BuzzEng: Sorry for the omission, you’re in at 83-points, 4th, and 10th.

ChippersLoveChild: (Conceived from a Hooter’s waitress??) You’re in at 75-point, 4th, and 14th.

J-Man: You’re in at 80-points, 4th, and 13th.

Cousin Eddie: You’re in at a WHOPPING 102-points, the new leader atop the poster guesses, tied to 2nd in SE Division, and 4th in the Conference. I must say, I wish you the MOST amount of luck in this contest, sir.

R. Stroz

October 6th, 2010
2:10 pm

No trades today to unload salary. One hour left.

kracker

October 6th, 2010
2:14 pm

Thrashers27, I think Ben said all 66 games are to be in HD.

Brendan

October 6th, 2010
2:15 pm

It’ll bother me, if I don’t say it. I was “concerned” about re-signing Kubina, due to his advancing age. You know how I feel about having players under contract in their mid-30’s. But, for the reduced price tag of $3.85 million-per-annum, instead of $5.0 million, over 2-3 years, I do think I would have done it, if Kubina had been amenable to playing in Atlanta. Remember, he got TRADED here. He never signed to play here.

I would have pushed hard, on the day after New Year’s, to re-sign him. If he refused, I would have been forced to make a calculated decision about a playoff-run with him, as opposed to what I could salvage for him, at the trade deadline. Ultimately, as I tend to have more doubts than certainties about this club, I would have traded him, and Hedberg, and Colby Armstrong, etc., for what I could get. But, that’s just mee. And no fan should like what I would do, for it means we “quit” on the rest of the season, in favor of a more favorable draft pick. Fans don’t like that. Fans want to win every game, no matter WHEN the games are played.

We will miss Kubina this season. I wish Pavel the best, as he rejoins the Tampa Bay Lightning. A class act. And a good defender. Nothing we can do about it, now. Bygones.

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
2:15 pm

Thrashers27 – And just as I post that comment, I read the press release that was sent to me. Here are the first couple of paragraphs which address the 4-10 game and HD.

“The Atlanta Thrashers will have 65 games televised on FOX Sports South or SportSouth and one game on VERSUS during the 2010-11 NHL regular season. FOX Sports South and SportSouth will combine to televise more games than ever before, and, for the first time ever, all games are scheduled to be televised in high definition.

Coverage begins on Friday, Oct. 8 when the 2009-10 President’s Trophy-winning Washington Capitals visit Philips Arena at 7:30 p.m ET in the first of 32 games scheduled to be televised on SportSouth. FOX Sports South will televise 33 games beginning on Saturday, Oct. 9 at 7 p.m. ET when the Thrashers visit the Tampa Bay Lightning. As previously announced, the April 7 contest at the New York Rangers can be seen on VERSUS, the NHL’s national cable partner. Additionally, the April 10 game vs. the Pittsburgh Penguins will potentially be featured as NBC’s Game of the Week.”

Dandylions

October 6th, 2010
2:16 pm

Brendan – can you put me in for 93pts, 2nd SE and 7th. It’s kinda like the Braves – you gotta believe!

Brendan

October 6th, 2010
2:16 pm

R.Stroz: You’re watching the clock, like me? C’mon Lou! Trade us Travis Zajac!!

Jeff97

October 6th, 2010
2:18 pm

If you are able to get the Centre Ice Preview, that gives you 4 extra games at the start of the year that are not on Fox as the preview is from 10/7-10/24 (at least on direct tv). If you are a season tix holder, at my count, there are only 5 games not avail to us either by local tv or going to the game. Oct 30th STL, Nov 9th at Ottawa, Dec 11th at NYI, Dec 20th at Tor., and Feb 7th at Tor. The 4/7 game will be on Versus

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
2:23 pm

Jeff97 – Also keep in mind that last season NHL Center Ice sometimes aired games that were not on either team’s TV networks. They aired the stadium feed for the video and dubbed the home team’s radio play-by-play over top of it. I’m sure they’ll do the same for some of the games…if not all…of the one’s you listed.

Joe Friday

October 6th, 2010
2:33 pm

“JF: Coming Friday night?”

As of right now, that’s a negative. Have to talk to the wifey but the boy has his leg in a cast and I don’t think we need to drag him down there quite yet . . .

SomaAtl95

October 6th, 2010
2:39 pm

Rawhide, thanks for this most excellent blog. It has helped while my wife and I are up in New York. Off the blog topic but a point of interest – I’m at a Wal-Mart up here and wearing the White Thrashers Away Jersey – the greeter says “Atlanta Thrashers! Nice Jersey!!” and then a line of Rangers Fans all gave me quite the stink-eye. I knew they were rangers fans because they had jerseys, hoodies and hats on all decked out for the Rangers. I guess they were upset about Todd White as well – however I think I saw earlier that they put him on waivers? Thats just too funny! The funniest part was that the Rangers fans were (and I swear this is no joke) buying Milk and TP.

Fun times!

Jeff97

October 6th, 2010
2:41 pm

for me at least, there is only a handful of games that cant be watched one way or the other as I dont normally purchase the Centre Ice Package.

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
2:45 pm

SomaAtl95 – HA! :lol: Did the milk cartons have White’s image on it??

Yes, he was waived a few days ago. No word on if a team has swooped in and snatched him up yet.

Best to Mrs. SomaAtl95.

Adam

October 6th, 2010
2:46 pm

Brendan – I, like you & Stroz, am keeping 1 eye on the clock. 15 minutes to go…

GaVaHokie

October 6th, 2010
2:48 pm

Kozek on IR, Thrashers need to make one more decision… most likely Slater goes to IR and they’re done.

Still, it’s awfully quiet this afternoon with so many teams needing cap space… 10 minutes!

SomaAtl95

October 6th, 2010
2:51 pm

I think the cartons had a pic of the Ranges in the playoffs saying “Have you seen me?”
Almsot made me want to see if they had a half priced buffet up here called “Sean Avery’s sloppy seconds”
Thanks for the messages, nothing is consoling my wife but as much as she hears me talk about this blog it made her feel good that you passed on your condolences the other day. Quite the very nice thing and we really appreciate it :)

Jeff97

October 6th, 2010
3:00 pm

Looks like an old friend is back in our division.

CANUCKS TRADE HORDICHUK TO PANTHERS FOR PETERS

Spud Webb

October 6th, 2010
3:01 pm

The Hawks are the Clippers…

Tom

October 6th, 2010
3:05 pm

CViv is reporting that Pavs is most likely in goal. WTF

A new coach, a newish GM, and a new highly respected goalie, Mason, was brought in.

So what do the powers that be do to reinvigorate the fans for opening night???

They bring in a young, inconsistent goalie who could blow up against the best offensive team in the NHL.

Not very bright for getting the fans re-invigorated…

kracker

October 6th, 2010
3:06 pm

Pavelec in goal: Let the second-guessing begin!! err…continue

GaVaHokie

October 6th, 2010
3:07 pm

Looking at the TV schedule… 10 Away games not televised, wtf?

If there is any reason to show a game on TV, it’s an away game.

R. Stroz

October 6th, 2010
3:07 pm

No Trades? Nothing? Whiskey Tango Foxtrot!

R. Stroz

October 6th, 2010
3:10 pm

The Thrashers should change their new slogan from “A Brutally Good Time” to “You Can’t Fix Stupid.”

Pavelec in for opening night, now that’s BEYOND STUPID.

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
3:12 pm

Let me go on record right now as saying I hope…pray…that Opie has a strong showing Friday night if indeed he is the one in goal. regardless of what I may opine or say, as long as he’s got a Thrashers jersey on I want him to do well.

That being said….

:eek: Whisky – Tango – Foxtrot!?!?!

jen

October 6th, 2010
3:16 pm

over under on the season:
I think that this team will be frustrating. They’ll be right there every night, but i just don’t see the offense as it is currently being enough to avg. 2.8 goals or higher per night. Prove me wrong Kane, Bergie and Little – because if those three can step up and pot 30 each, its another story, I just don’t think its a realistic expectation for this season. Defense should be better and I’ve seen good promise of that during the pre-season. I just don’t think the entire team is going to gel before nov. They need time to build chemistry and find each other on the ice. That anticipation of where a teammate was going to be was completely missing during the one preseason game i saw, and the hole might be too big to dig out of by then.
86 points, 3rd in the SE, 10th in the conference

And I want the over on Modin. I think he’s got something left in the tank

kracker

October 6th, 2010
3:17 pm

Hey!!! You guys stop swearing at World! Wait, in this case he will be leading the swearing.

GaVaHokie

October 6th, 2010
3:27 pm

All teams were compliant after waivers yesterday.

Chicago was safe after moving Huet
Rangers were safe after waiving White and Kennedy.
Vancouver was safe after trading Hordichuk and O’Brien
NJD was compliant after Salvador and Salmela on IR
CGY… ?… not sure. So close it’s hard to say what they did.
Boston safe after Paille on waivers.

ChippersLoveChild

October 6th, 2010
3:29 pm

Any predictions for Friday? I say 6-2 Caps…. Pavs will let in three goals in the first 12 minutes… goals coming from Kane and Hainsey for us… shots are 49-27 in favor of the Caps. It will get better, but I don’t think it starts off well for us this year.

Joe The Greek Friday

October 6th, 2010
3:37 pm

Ok Brendan, no trade was made. Anyone else think Wadudley played a little poker here and lost (thinking they’d be able to leave themselves some cap room to swoop in and pick off a player from a cap strapped club)?

79 pts, 4th in the SouthLeast, 12th in the Conference.

Buff at D, no top line scoring, moving forwards out of position, questionable line makeups, starting Pavs off at #1? The more things change, the more they stay the same . . .

Russ

October 6th, 2010
3:49 pm

CViv is reporting that Pavs is most likely in goal.

This, along with Buff on D is making me realize I was giving this “organization” way too much credit. I’m sure there are more horrifically stupid decisions to come.

Brendan, please change my predictions to 84/4th/13th. Thanks.

FormerIslesFan

October 6th, 2010
3:50 pm

Brendan: Okay…I finally have a moment to give you my vote (especially since you called me out earlier in the blog!). Since there is so much money riding on this one, I’m going to go out on an optimistic limb: 89 Points, 3rd in Division, 8th in Conference.

Red Light: Is the Hat Trick contest still open?

RH: I have no problem with Opie starting in goal on Friday night. As much as I hate to say it, I just don’t think we’re going to pull that one off. So, why tarnish Mason’s debut as the Thrashers’ goaltender for the next two years?

Jeff97

October 6th, 2010
3:56 pm

Per ESPN – Semyon Varlamov on injured reserve list.
so we will see Neuvirth in goal on Friday night. I dont know if that is a good thing or not. But it appears that we will see two young goalies on Friday.

goose

October 6th, 2010
4:22 pm

Saw a tweet from NHL Sources that said the devils waved Zuberus, does anybody know if this is true?

89 points third in the conference ninth in the East

glovesave29

October 6th, 2010
4:48 pm

So Edmonton send Souray down to the AHL – that was expected. But they shipped him to the Hershey Bears, the affiliate of the Capitals, not their farm team in Oklahoma City.

Hmmmmmmmm…..

This ability for GM’s to bury their mistakes in Europe or the AHL is pure BS. I hope the next CBA addresses this.

Rightshot

October 6th, 2010
5:56 pm

Brendan – 90 pts, 3rd in SE and 10th in confrence (however you spell it)

Thrashers27

October 6th, 2010
6:09 pm

It’s along the same lines as waht Rawhide threw out earlier, but I’m hoping for something that looks like this once Cormier and Slates are back in the mix. Burmi goes back to Barrie after nine.

Thrashers27

October 6th, 2010
6:10 pm

Guess it would help if I put my lines in the post.

Ladd Antro Berg
Kane Little Peaver
Modin Slater Dawes
Eager Cormier Thorb/Stewart

Fan from Flames Days

October 6th, 2010
6:38 pm

Brendan, put me down for the following: 96pts/2nd Div/5th Conference

Adam

October 6th, 2010
9:17 pm

Well Brendan, Stroz & anyone else sitting around waiting for a trade to go down today. You’ve got to wonder if Dud’s is sitting on his couch tonight thinking “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot just happened today”

It looks like all of the teams over the cap are either sending players down or listing them on IR to get under the cap, pure circumvention.

As long as the AS clowns own this team there is no hope because we all know what their bird sings.

So this year again we will be told a 2pt gain in the standings is improvement. The only problem is we’ll fall two spots back in the conference standings.

Put me down for 85pts, 4th in the Division and 12th in the conference

Curly

October 6th, 2010
9:46 pm

Rawhide – I have to agree with your line-up. I hope Ramsey knows what he is doing. Unfortunately I don’t see it. I predict an opening night result of 4-1 Caps. Ugh!

Rammer

October 6th, 2010
10:30 pm

Mr. Rawhides: If I start him Friday, Pavs has a chance to set the tone for the year against the Craps. If the Craps lay another snowman on us then ole Pavs will need a Magic-8 puck to get back in the line-up.

Rawhide

October 6th, 2010
10:32 pm

I had a good time tonight at the Face Off Event at Philips Arena. It was really nice to chat w/ coach Ramsay for several minutes. He spent some time with World Be Free, myself and my oldest tax exemption chatting about his days in Buffalo.

Now…for those of you who have asked, there have been some modification to the widgets on the ajc.com sports page. There are a number of places where this blog can be found. First, on the main sports page you’ll notice that it’s found down on the left side under “Thrashers and NHL”.

Additionally, they have a new “Your View: AJC Sports Fan Blogs” section located down in the center column. Anytime I, or other fan bloggers, post a new blog it goes the top of that section then cascades down as the others post theirs.

Also, there is a link on the Thrashers page. Currently it’s located at the bottom of the center column labled “Latest Trashers/NHL News”. But I’ve been told it’ll also return to the left side section where Schultz and Bradley have there’s linked when it contains Thrashers related topics.

And lastly, you could always just put this link in your favorites that takes you straight to my home page at the ajc.com. The most recent post will always be right at the top.

I hope this helps.

Rammer

October 6th, 2010
10:39 pm

If you guys are wondering why I’m keeping Boris around……..well let’s just call it the 800 pound gorilla in the clubhouse for now.

Brendan

October 6th, 2010
10:43 pm

Jeff97, I definitely prefer Nieuverth over Varlie! But, isn’t that even MORE reason, in a month with SO FEW HOME GAMES … to start Chris Mason? I cannot understand the thinking here. Unless the thinking is … “Pavelec, don’t cry me a river … we GAVE you the opportunity, from Game # 1 … to be the # 1 goalie here … you played yourself out of a job.” And if that’s the thinking here … that’s not exactly a positive vibe. The good news is … absolutely nobody has SAID that. Or implied it. If it’s true … (if being the operative word,) that the Thrashers INTEND to compete for the Southeast Division Championship this year … then they surely, surely must have sized up the division, identifying WASHINGTON as the front-runner they have to beat this year. And if (there’s that word again) that’s true, then EVERY GAME vs. the Capitals is “essential.” Well, why wouldn’t the Thrashers, facing Nieuvert over Varlie, start Mason?? I hate to harken back to the words of former Head Coach Bob Hartley, but I will. “As dah Coach, it’s my job to field dah team dat BEST give us duh chance to win.” Welllllll. Are these the line combinations (Modin and Dawes on the top line, with Kane REDUCED to a “bottom six” forward!!!) and netminding choices that “best give us duh chance to win?” Holy Schlamoly, Batman! Okay. Okay. Look. It’s one (1) game out of 82. I get it. We have to play Ondrej Pavelec sporadically throughout the season. What’s the big hangup over Game # 1? Well, it is “Opening Night.” Meaning??? Here’s the organization’s BIG CHANCE … to put its BEST FOOT FORWARD … in an attempt to WIN BACK FANS … and show that IT’S A NEW DAY in Thrasherville. Still with me? Well, Chris Mason was, technically, one of the organization’s biggest offseason moves, being an early July FREE AGENT contract signing. Why not “show him off?” UNLESS, GASP, the thinking is … “Who Boy! That’s Ovechkin, Semin, Backstrom, and Green … we don’t want THEM giving Chris Mason a sun tan on the back of his neck … in the 1st game of the season. Better start Pavelec. So, if we lose … we can offer him up as the sacrificial goat of the “new” Atlanta Thrashers? And, gee, that’s not a very positive vibe, either.

Truthfully, I don’t think the statistical importance of 1/82nd of the season matters all that much. It terms of the final standings. It doesn’t. But, in the court “public perception,” … I would hope … and I would pray … and I would have to believe … that the Thrashers organization would understand the significance of starting off WELL. Maybe, I give them too much credit.

Segue, Mr. Burns turns to Smithers and says, “Smithers, perhaps Homer Simpson was NOT the brilliant tactician that I took him for.”

Phil Foley - Atlanta Thrashers Examiner

October 6th, 2010
10:49 pm

Brendan – 85 points, 4th in the Southeast, 10th in the East

http://exm.nr/axDAsh

Tom

October 6th, 2010
10:54 pm

Brendan, amen brother. We are the diehard fans. We know the difference. But the casual fan which the Thrasher’s need to lure into the Bulb to make a go of it will be wondering why all this talk about this Mason guy went on when he does not even start the first game? And their next reactions is, guess they did not improve all that much…

Not a brilliant marketing strategy.

Brendan

October 6th, 2010
11:07 pm

Adam: You’re in at 85-points, 4th and 12th in the conference.

Mikey: You’re in at 85-points, 3rd in SE Division, and 10th in the Conference.

Dandylions: No offense was meant! You’re in at 93-points, 2nd and 7th in the Conference. Good luck.

Joe “The Greek” Friday: Your pick of 79-points, 4th in the SE division and 12th in the conference is registered.

Jen (are you also JLH?): You’re in at 86-points, 3rd in SE division, and 10th in the conference, with “over” on “Modin Watch ‘10-11.”

Russ: Your REVISED guess of 84-points, 4th, and 13th in the conference is duly noted.

FIF: You’re in like Flynn at 89-points, 3rd in SE, and 8th in the conference.

goose: You’re in at 89-points, 3rd in SE division, and 9th in the Conference.

rightshot: You’re in at 90-points, 3rd in SE, and 10th in the conference.

Fan from Flames Days: You’re registered at 96-points, 2nd in SE, and 5th in the Conference.

Statebird: You’re in at 86-points, 4th in SE, and 11th in the Conference.

bigharybeast: You’re in at 93-points, 2nd in SE, and 8th in the Conference.

Badger Bob: You’ve got “Under” in Modin Watch ‘10-11.

Chipper’sLoveChild: Your REVISED guess is duly noted at 75-points, 4th in SE, and 14th in the Conference, with a record of 32-39-11.

HockeyMom92: Please post again, as often as you are able. I hope it’ll be a GOOD YEAR for you.

We’re still MISSING some regulars:

Scotty
Sharon
Smitty
Thrasher Jim
Toby
Tony C.
Yung JB from MTL
FrostyTheSnowMan
Get The Puck Out
h
JLH
Mehoff
mutton
R.Stroz
Darren
Denny
Andrew
Buzilla in CT
Ranallo in AT
Sara
Sean Grace
Christy
Thrashdawg74
Nathan
Sage of Bluesland
Stendec
NASCAR Dave
Michael B. Shapiro

In “Modin Watch ‘10-11″ … we’ve had 23 votes cast. 15 for “over” and 8 for “under.” The benchmarks are 14 goals and 56 games played. All goals and games played MUST be done as a Thrasher. Any games in the minors or while playing for another team … do NOT count in the contest. If Modin is moved at the trade deadline, and hits those numbers, they do NOT count. I repeat, they do NOT count.

kracker

October 6th, 2010
11:09 pm

Mason vs Pavs: Has anyone considered that Mason may have tweeked something?? Needs an extra day off? With back-to-back games, who knows. And they are back-to-back games. Assuming Mason tends a win and Pavs either wins or loses his, does it really matter crap which guy went first?

However, what I really think is that Rammer is playing his cards to go for the best chance for a .500 record after two games. Mason vs Caps looks daunting. Mason vs Bolts looks a lot more doable. Clawing at least a 1-1 record from the first two games will look a lot better than 0-2.

Rammer

October 6th, 2010
11:13 pm

Lets set the record straight – I am the brilliant tactician. Donny is the brilliant marketing whatcha ma callit. Pavs is the abonimable snowman and Duds is the Wizard of OZ…..and Boris is Dorothy who’s better known as Doris.

Red Light

October 6th, 2010
11:26 pm

Former Isles Fan: Yes, the Hat Trick contest is still open through tomorrow, 10/7/10.

Brendan

October 6th, 2010
11:28 pm

Phil Foley: You’re in, sir, at 85-points, 4th and 10th.

Tom: Marketing isn’t the Thrashers forte.

Jimbo: Can you please step forward with a SE Division guess for your entry? You have until “puck drop” to do so.

Rawhide: Unless I missed it, you never made a Conference rank pick with your entry of 88-points and 2nd in SE division. You have until, roughly 7:40-ish PM on Friday to make that selection. So, still plenty of time.

Heavy sigh … I really shouldn’t have gotten my expectations up … for a big move with some cap-strapped club. The salary cap circumvention is out of control. Why bother having rules? For “Fairness?” Well, we’ve seen that ship sail. It left port in 2007-08, when the cap exploded, effectively widening the gap between the “haves” and the “have nots.” I suppose, and Ranallo10 would agree with me, without the CBA … the Atlanta Thrashers wouldn’t spend to the FLOOR of the cap. We’d be looking at $22-$28 million budgets, while the big markets spend $75-$88 million. At least this way, Atlanta is FORCED to spend $43.4 million and the most the big markets can have is $59.4 million, in terms of the players that actually take to the ice. And that doesn’t count the Millions of dollars they pay players to be in the AHL or who they “loan” overseas. When the Lockout happened, this was the phrase that pays: “Gone are the days of the $10 million players.” Aren’t we close to 15 players who make that, in terms of ACTUAL SALARY paid out, today? It’s a CBA that seriously needs revision, not just tweaking. And it should revisit contracts “over 40″ again, to get rid of that dollar cost averaging non-sense. If you’re going to allow that, at least cut the age off at 34 or 35, instead of 40. Sheesh! What does that really accomplish? When a star like Tavares hits RFA status, at age 21 or 22, he can get an 18-year deal, with dollar-cost averaging that turns his contract into utter FRAUD.

Red Light

October 6th, 2010
11:47 pm

A Capital’s Contrast – Assuming Valabik and Slater don’t play, the Thrashers will have four (three first rounders) of their own draft picks on the ice Friday night. Caps lead the league with 11.

“We’re in a lot of ways lucky, I guess,” GM George McPhee said. “We came up with this plan years ago, and fortunately ownership stood by it. In a lot of cities, a lot of teams, ownership does not have the patience. We’re starting Friday night with 11 of our own first-round picks in the lineup. The league average is four. The closest team to us has seven.

“We put this plan together and we’re in pretty good shape. It’s a good team, they’re our guys, and hopefully it leads to a Cup one of these days.”

Burmistrov will be the other Russian wearing No. 8 Friday night.

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
12:30 am

McPhee deserves credit for the roster he’s assembled. He took heat for the 1st round exit, last year. But the Capitals were hardly the 1st President’s trophy winner to be bounced in the opening round. I think it happened to San Jose the year before. And it’s bound to have happened to the Red Wings, at some point, since they win the President’s Trophy a lot.

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
12:31 am

Red Light, are you going to post your #1 to #15 in each conference, this year?

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
12:50 am

Here’s my East, for spits and grins.

1. Pittsburgh (Atlantic Champs)
2. Washington (Southeast Champs)
3. Buffalo (Northeast Champs)
4. New Jersey (Still good enough to be here)
5. Philadelphia (Why not? This is as good a place as any for the Flyers.)
6. Carolina (Healthy Cam Ward would have made a big difference last year. After Staal was made Captain, the ‘Canes ripped it up.)
7. Boston (could also win the NE Division. Savard gonna play???)
8. Tampa Bay (Stamkos, Hedman, Lecavalier, St. Louis, Simon Gagne, that’s enough to get in, and possibly overcome their goaltending tandem.)
9. Ottawa (Don’t hate me, Sens fans. I like the Senators. I just don’t get a warm, fuzzy feeling about a return to the playoffs.)
10. Montreal (Halak should have been paid and kept, while trading Price away.)
11. Atlanta (Bias, showing now.)
12. NY Rangers (Two words: Glen Sather.)
13. Toronto (Gotta think the buds will climb somewhat this year.)
14. NY Islanders (Maybe I have ranked them too low. Josh Bailey, John Tavares, Mark Streit … this team could surprise people by playing meaningful games in early March.)
15. Florida (In a nutshell, who wants to be here? The GM asked if anyone wanted to be released or traded. Nathan Horton didn’t waste time stepping forward. I can only hope David Booth makes a successful return, this season, for the sake of the Panthers.)

Red Light, how’d I do, compared to your list?

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
1:08 am

I couldn’t make sense of the West this year. I’m going on hunches, mostly.

1. Vancouver (Northwest Champs)
2. San Jose (Pacific Champs)
3. Detroit (Central Champs)
4. Chicago (loss of players must be felt somehow this season)
5. Los Angeles (up, slightly, from last year.)
6. Phoenix (who knows???)
7. Colorado (Craig Anderson has to deliver, and high-end draft pick must shine.)
8. Nashville (flipped a coin over Minnesota)
9. Minnesota (could be a playoff team)
10. Anaheim (better than people think.)
11. Calgary
12. St. Louis (maybe too low??)
13. Columbus (Sigh. They need to win.)
14. Edmonton (Another long year.)

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
1:12 am

I forgot Dallas. Put ‘em at #13, push Columbus & Edmonton down.

Tony C

October 7th, 2010
3:17 am

I have been avoiding putting in my prediction because…well, I was hoping the whole appeasement of fat@ss thing would be done by now. But it looks like it’s not… and wow! Things have gone soswimmingly for this club and the whole appeasement of star players tactic… Tell ya what, Brendan-howabout I give you two predictions; one with fat@ss on the blueline, and one where he is the guy we traded for.

Seriously, how many 6′4″ 250+ forwards with nice hands are there in the league? How many big punishing D-men with hard shots?

Jethro

October 7th, 2010
3:35 am

Well, its about time fur my guess. Aftur talkin with tha playurs last nite, they aint too happie about there pay. Come to think of it, some overage fellur named Brashear is gettin paid more do to nuthin than half the playurs on tha team that are actullie workin fur a livin.

Ima guess thats tha Thrasher stimulus plan at wurk.

Underpade playurs just don’t give a boneefide effurt every nite.

So, put me down fur 78 points, 4th in tha confurance, and 13th fur the deveshun.

World Be Free

October 7th, 2010
7:49 am

Great meeting Rammer last night and talking old times. They guy is class all the way, highest character as a player, fine leader as a coach.

Dwayne

October 7th, 2010
8:08 am

What’s the over under on goals scored for Caps Friday nite, and at what minute mark of what period is OP pulled. Why we are at it, How many WTF’s does Rammer spew on camera??????

Rhythmpenguin

October 7th, 2010
8:12 am

My entry for the Hat Trick contest: Nik Antropov vs the Florida Panthers on November 17th (in the locker room with a wooden stick =).

Smoothie

October 7th, 2010
8:13 am

We’ll have 6 draft picks take to the ice Friday nite: Kane, Burmistrov, Little, Bogosian, Enstrom and Pavelec. It would be 8 with Slates and Boris.

Putting On The Foil

October 7th, 2010
8:16 am

Well, today is the day. My annual tradition of watching “Slap Shot” before the season starts. I only tell you guys this because it helps me prepare mentally for an upcoming Thrasher’s season. You all should try it. Go Thrashers!

Rhythmpenguin

October 7th, 2010
8:19 am

Interesting…thanks Smoothie.

rob

October 7th, 2010
8:28 am

Opie starts the season opener, I am a disappointed fan in attendance. I want to see us with the best chance possible to beat the Craps after the hosing they gave us at home last season. Opie does not give us that chance. As a fan, I have zero faith in him yet. His flashes of brilliance are overshadowed by his horrible mistakes, and I have to think the guys playing in front of him aren’t confident in his abilities yet either. I am going to stay postive about the team, Duds has said from the beginning he is satisfied with who he has, but I feel Pavs is our weak link here, until/if he settles his game down and learns how to control his positioning and rebounds consistantly. The season opener with a (hopefully) large crowd isn’t what I would say is good timing for him or the fans who are expecting good things from the Mason signing.

rob

October 7th, 2010
8:32 am

Foil,
With all the superstitions around the game, and all the disappointing seasons we have suffered through, maybe a different movie is in order for this, the eve of our season. Maybe waiting until after the season opener to watch it will change our seasonal frustration! Nothing else seems to be working. :)

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
8:48 am

Tony C., if I allowed two (2) guesses per poster, it would sort of defeat the purpose of the contest. But there’s still time to get yours in. Whatever it might be, Tony C.

Jethro … welcome back, son. Haven’t seen ya in these parts in a while! (Still got my moonshine, boy? Shhh.) You’re entered at 78-points, 4th, and 13th. Jethro, did you want to go over or under on “Modin Watch ‘10-11?’”

five hole

October 7th, 2010
8:53 am

Spud Webb

October 7th, 2010
9:01 am

Have to vent & I’m way off the subject here. There had been some posts about the AM sports down here in Atlanta!! UGH…what a mess.
Buff was on 790 this morning, Steak asks, not kidding, “you play forward, right?”….Buff uh, I’m D now. WOW, Steak says….then he says…you’re from Minnesota, play hockey all your life??? GOOD GRIEF, really Steak?? What a moron, DO SOME HOMEWORK you lazy &ss clown. Thank god dimino was on from SF to ask some good questions. Buff sounded excited for sure. Love it.
Next story, listening on the way home from teh office yesterday, 5 ish, Pollack and the other guy (forgot his name), Pollack RIPS the thrashers with a I wouldnt know if they moved comment. WOW….here we are in the midst of one of the most wonderful sports months of the year & that’s pollacks comment???? Instead of topics such as the NFL, MLB, NHL, & the NBA we get to hear about their golf game today?? WOW…no wonder your show and station s&ck. Sooooooooooo many sports topics that these stations never touch, MMA, Boxing, golf, much less the 4 major sports, but I get to hear all about their personal lifes. I COULDNT CARE LESS.
Flip stations this morning, get to here the rude guy, WOW…he’s soooooooooo bad, they’re doing radio highlights of the Braves season?? WHAT???????? We KNOW WHAT HAPPENED DURING THE SEASON…can you bafoons talk about last nights games, tonights games, anything??????????? Again, they start talking about of the mark subjects, personal lifes and such. WE DONT CARE. What we have on the radio here is guys who want to be cool or in a click, they have no life, including sports. They think thier stories are funny or cute & none of them are. I’ve never seen such a collection of “sports” talk radio folks, who DONT KNOW SPORTS…………sorry………now I feel better!!!!
When I become wealthy (never), I’m creating my own AM radio sports talk…one that takes calls, hits on every sports subject & is knowledgable!
See you guys & girls tomorrow night, I’m JACKED UP!!!!!!!!!!!
Wait & is it possible NOT TO HAVE any MLB playoffs on the radio? How does that happen in this market????
Redlight, time for you to take over a station down here.

Rawhide

October 7th, 2010
9:17 am

What’s the over under on goals scored for Caps Friday nite, and at what minute mark of what period is OP pulled. Why we are at it, How many WTF’s does Rammer spew on camera??????

Dwayne – OK, since you asked….

Over/under for goals scored on Opie Friday night is 3.5. I’ll take the “over”…hope I’m wrong.

Over/under for when he’s pulled is right at the 40 minute mark, meaning he’s pulled in place of Mason during second intermission. I will take the “over”as well, thinking he at least plays into the third if not the whole game given Mason would need to start the next night.

Over/under on Ramsay Whisky-Tango-Foxtrot moments on camera…I’ll set it low, say 1.5. I’ll take the “under” here because he doesn’t strike me as the kinda guy who will resort to too many emotional outbursts from the bench

kracker

October 7th, 2010
9:28 am

I have come around to Coaches way of reasoning about starting Pavelec. What I’m thinking is that Rammer is playing his goalie cards to allow for the best chance for a .500 record after two games. These new Thrashers with Mason vs the President’s Cup winning Caps looks certain to be a regulaion loss. Mason vs the rebuilt Bolts looks a lot more likely for getting a win. Earning at least a 1-1 record and two points from the first two games will look a thousand times better than going 0-2 with zero points.

I want to start the west coast trip with points in the bank and Rammer’s goalie call is giving the team a chance to do that.

TableHockey

October 7th, 2010
9:31 am

I want to believe in this team but the skeptic in me just keeps winning over. I really think we end this season with a lottery pick.

Brendan – please put me down for 88pts, 3th in the Division and 11th in the conference

rob

October 7th, 2010
9:34 am

I am going with over on goals against, under on time Pavs is pulled (REALLY hoping he doesn’t get the start), and under on the WTF cause Ramsey isn’t that kind of guy IMO either.

Adam

October 7th, 2010
9:38 am

I’ll take the under on “Modin Watch ‘10-11″

I’m not feeling any love for this season. I really hope I’m wrong but I just don’t see it atm.

Unless something miraculous happens between now and 7:40pm tomorrow it looks like the opening night salary that counts towards the cap will be $45,999,166.00. There are 5,100,00.00 in bonus dollars counted in there, if half of those bonuses aren’t met we would be $49,166.00 over the floor. Granted Slates coming back will add part of his million to that number but who believes we won’t have anyone else hit the IR this year.

What is it that AS song bird sings again????

Thrashers27

October 7th, 2010
10:22 am

I know we’ve all taken notice of the changes in personell and the unexpected line combos, but for some reason this season’s beginning seems very different than those of the past. I guess it’s just uncertainty. In the past, I’ve at least felt optimistic and confident about new coaches and players.

I’m not saying I know any better than Ramsay, or even Waddell for that matter, but the more I hear about these personnel decisions, the more concerned I become. It seems almost like they’re doing everything opposite of what makes sense at first blush.

I would be extremely impressed if everything comes together for a successfull 2010 campaign, but I’m not feeling very confident in that right now. I guess I’m just feeling anxious for the puck to drop and I’m tired of loving a losing team. I wanna love a winner!

ThrashDawg

October 7th, 2010
10:49 am

I wish that I was more optimistic but I really thought Dudley would pull a trade for a top line scorer and keep Buff as a forward instead of moving him back to defense. Oh well, 87 points, 3rd in the division and 9th in the conference. Tampa is going to be better and Carolina is always a dog fight; I believe we can over come one but not both. I hope I am wrong!

kracker

October 7th, 2010
11:06 am

The lines aren’t set yet except this one looks to be good as our big line.
Eager-Thorburn-Stewart
How about the ‘Beat Down’ line name for it?

thebigharybeast

October 7th, 2010
11:26 am

A-T-L-A-N-T-A T-H-R-A-S-H-E-R-S.

Do you see any “D” there? …No? Well, that’s not a coincidence as there hasn’t been much “D” involved with this organization over the first decade of its existence.

Just want to say. Classic!

Denny

October 7th, 2010
11:35 am

KNACKER – Your 9:28 AM POST is RIGHT ON!. I was scanning all the “negative dribble” about Pav starting in goal on this blog while thinking it was the best strategic move Coach Ramsey could do to finish with 2 points after 2 games. Just ready to POST myelf and WAM – there you said it. RIGHT ON MAN!

Denny

October 7th, 2010
11:42 am

BRENDAN – Last year I could not get past 88 points in my prediction due to poor G and D. BUT I am feeling better this year about G and D. AND I actually like our F better too because they will now play both ends of the ice. SO – put me down for 90 points, (40 in the first half season and 50 in the second); 2nd in the SE and 7th in the East.

GO THRASHERS

Dwayne

October 7th, 2010
11:50 am

OP pulled at the 12:34 mark of the 1st period having allowed 4 goals on 11 shots. Mason gives up 2 more and Thrash lose 6-1. Rammer has 0 WTF’s because he is speechless at the futility he sees. However, we outhit the Caps 2 to 1 and send 2 of their players to IR.

FormerIslesFan

October 7th, 2010
11:53 am

Okay, here are two other picks with no sound logic behind them.

“Over” on Modin.

First Thrasher Hat-Trick: Kane against the Blackhawks on 11.6. (Does it count if it’s a Gordie Howe hat-trick?)

Putting On The Foil

October 7th, 2010
11:53 am

Rob, It’s already a done deal. Just finished. I did pick Bergy for the hat trick against Miller. That’s some positive thinking voodoo, ain’t it?

kracker

October 7th, 2010
11:58 am

You bet I would love to win or get points in both games, Denny. But since we will probably lose to the Caps (I hate to say that) the next game is really more important. One, for the two points obviously. And two, to establish that the Thrashers have enough game to best another key division rival, one that they can concieveably beat in the season series (even if all the pundits favor the Lightning because they love Yzerman.) And three, get points before the early road trip.

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
12:00 pm

Rhythmpenguin: You’re in for the Hat trick contest with Antro on Nov. 17. Four others selected the same game, but all have someone different. Against Vokoun no less.

Concerning hockey talk on AM radio…the only way around it is to keep calling the station and asking to talk hockey. The powers at both stations repeatedly say that no one wants to talk hockey in this town. You have to make a point to call and harass them about it. All that being said, there isn’t one guy that knows anything about here, so why would they talk about it? Kincade knows the game but even though he would love to talk about it, the higher ups discourage it. On that station, college sports reign and that’s why most tune in.

The only time we hear solid hockey talk is from Kamal and Eliot, but they espouse the company line too frequently, and no one discusses the rest of the league at all.

When I think of hockey talk in this town, all I can think of is this line by Tommy Devito (Joe Pesci) of Goodfellas!

“You know Spider, you’re a f—– mumbling, stuttering little f—. You know that?”

Smoothie

It wasn’t “all” draft picks McPhee was referring to, it was first-round draft picks. Varlamov is hurt, so it’s now 10.
2009 Johansson
2008 Carlson
2007 Alzner
2006 Backstrom and Varlamov
2004 Ovechkin, Green and Schultz
2003 Fehr
2002 Gordon and Semin

There are several other former Caps first-round picks playing with other teams too.
1992 Gonchar
1997 Boynton
2000 Sutherby
2002 Eminger

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
12:01 pm

Former Isles Fan: Your Hat Trick selection has been duly noted

Jeff97

October 7th, 2010
12:35 pm

Spud Webb – could not agree with you more on the sports talk down here. Very few of them actually give any real insight as to what is really going on. Steakie is terrible and his knowledge is just horrible on 790.
You would hardly even know that the season is about to begin if you listened to sports talk radio down here.

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
12:41 pm

Adam: Totally agree with your whole post. I have you down as “under” for “Modin Watch ‘10-11.”

Tablehockey: 88-points, 3rd in SE, and 11th in the conference is noted and logged.

Thrashdawg: You’re in at 87-points, 3rd in SE division, and 9th in the conference.

Denny: You’re locked in at 90-points, 2nd, and 7th in the Conference. Good luck, sir.

FIF: You’re registered with “over” for the “Modin Watch ‘10-11.”

Hopefully, I didn’t miss anyone.

Jimbo: You still haven’t made a SE division prediction for your guess. Rank in SE division is the “1st set” of tie-breaker criteria.

Rawhide: I still don’t have a conference rank, unless you posted it above, and I missed it, for your Thrashers guess.

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
12:48 pm

The last guess in the point totals contest is going to be roughly 7:40PM, Friday night, October 7th. If you want to revise your guess, or make one, that’s the deadline. It must be posted under your screen name, at this site, to count.

R.Stroztradamus will, at about that time, post the winning guess in the Thrashers budget contest, which closed back on September 20th, at 11PM. It’s gonna be a tight one on the budget contest! Many, many good guesses. We’re using capgeek.com to determine the winner. Thanks, to all those who participated in that fun, little exercise in ownership confidence.

I have to say it … I’m entering this season with yawn. Normally, at this time, I’m really looking forward to getting back in the swing of daily boxscores, etc. But I’m not feeling it this year. Even with the “new” GM, and new Head Coach, and Associate Head Coach, and assistant Head Coaches, and new strength/conditioning trainer, and new goaltender consultant. All these “new” things, but NO new “intermission babe.” That’s right, folks. There’s no Natalie Taylor this year. No Erin Andrews. No Amanda Jahn. Yawn.

So, it’ll just have to be the hockey that titillates us. Hope it delivers!!

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
12:55 pm

Folks, despite my previous post, the season isn’t over if we lose on “Opening Night.” Or even if we lose the 2nd game. For if we win game # 3, we’re 1-2, with 79 more to play. So, I’ll caution you from calling the “time of death” sometime in October, for our playoff berth. But really, I’m not even thinking about the playoffs this year. I just want this team to develop an IDENTITY, and have a “team concept.” If those things happen, this year, at long last, but there’s no playoffs, I’ll still consider it to be somewhat of a successful season.

To be honest, the players I most want to watch this year are Zach Bogosian and Evander Kane. I can only hope Rich Peverley can return to form, and that Bergfors, despite the contract he eventually was forced to sign, will enjoy playing here this season.

I haven’t checked this yet, but our 4th line of Thorburn, Slater, and Boulton might have the most longevity as a unit … for a 4th line … since coming out of the lockout, back in 2005. At least we have that kinda consistency going on, from year to year.

Trixie (Rawhide's Secretary)

October 7th, 2010
1:03 pm

May I have your attention please. May I have your attention please.

Gen. Rawhide will be addressing the Thrasherville troops at 0700 tomorrow as the 2010-11 Thrashers campaign sets to get under way.

Thank you, carry on…

kracker

October 7th, 2010
1:21 pm

Perhaps Gen. Rawhide can work in this Braveheart line: “They may take our lives, but they’ll never take our freedom!!” It would be quite rousing for the Great General (in Thrasher Blue face paint) to stand before the troops in the food court and so loudly proclaim.

(The “they” must be referring to the Caps or the Pens or maybe the concession vendors)

Alan R.

October 7th, 2010
1:38 pm

Brendan, I still don’t see my “contest entry” there.

Ray

October 7th, 2010
1:39 pm

Trixie,

0700, or 1900? Rawhide, nice meeting you and your oldest tax exemption last night. Best of luck to your youngest getting in to one of the Sevice Academies!

Ray

Trixie (Rawhide's Secretary)

October 7th, 2010
1:45 pm

Mr. Ray – That would be 7:00 am tomorrow morning. That’s when the next blog entry will post.

Mr. Brendan – Mr. Rawhide wanted me to inform you that his official prediction for conference finish is 8th.

sisu

October 7th, 2010
2:04 pm

Over on Modin

Nice to see everyone last night at the faceoff event!

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
2:07 pm

Canes up 4-2 after 2nd in Helsinki. Sutter has two goals. He’s a special player.

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
2:10 pm

Trixie: Please tell Bill that we expect the same colorful language tomorrow morning that Gen. Patton used with the Third Army. There is a general malaise with the group these days!

five hole

October 7th, 2010
2:12 pm

glovesave29 You were wondering about why Souray was sent to Hershey instead of Oklahama City (where I am). I was reading today in the local paper that Souray had a fight with the Oilers mgmt at the end of last year (didn’t say what it was about). The inference was that they sent Souray to Hershey to keep him away from the Oilers minor league talent.

five hole

October 7th, 2010
2:14 pm

Trixie I’ll listen to the address, but (a) not at 7AM and (b) he can post in military time, but I don’t salute anyone.

Joe The Greek Friday

October 7th, 2010
2:18 pm

“I was scanning all the “negative dribble” about Pav starting in goal on this blog while thinking it was the best strategic move Coach Ramsey could do to finish with 2 points after 2 games.”

You want to read negative dribble, just take a look at what you just wrote. That is complete utter loser mentality. I guarantee you that Coach is not thinking like that, and in case he is, then he’s a loser. You don’t plan to lose. You don’t throw your first game at home in the hope to try to win Game 2. If that’s his plan, the club is doomed to finish 15th in the East.

No, you try to win every game, period. You put your best goalie out against the top competition and put him out again the next night in Tampa. You don’t “rest him” in the first game of the season after having a week or more off? It’s the first game, what, is he tired already? Goodness gracious, the loser mentality has set in with the fans of this club so deep that we’re accepting a loss in Game 1 before they even drop the puck to try our best to get 2 pts on the road in Game 2?

R. Stroztradamus

October 7th, 2010
2:20 pm

I predict Rawhide will post a new blog tomorrow morning at 7:00 AM.

rob

October 7th, 2010
2:21 pm

Is it tomorrow yet?
LET’S GO THRASHERS!!!!!! clap clap clap clap clap

Joe General Patton Friday

October 7th, 2010
2:22 pm

Americans play to win at all times. I wouldn’t give a hoot and hell for a man who lost and laughed. That’s why Americans have never lost nor ever lose a war.

Zoomo

October 7th, 2010
2:23 pm

the 1900 address will take place in front of Gorins

rob

October 7th, 2010
2:24 pm

tell ‘em JF!

R. Stroz

October 7th, 2010
2:24 pm

Joe The Greek Friday – Sometimes the only thing you can do is laugh and shake your head.

Does Ron White get new material from this blog?

Smitty

October 7th, 2010
2:29 pm

I will go with 94 points, 2nd in division and 7th in conference. The first hat trick will be had by Andropov against the Blue Jackets on 11/4

Rodney Dangerfield

October 7th, 2010
2:30 pm

I’ll say it. Truman was too big a pu$$y to let McArthur drop the bomb on the North Koreans.

Puckhead

October 7th, 2010
3:10 pm

I take Pavs and the under only 2 get by him.

Spud Webb

October 7th, 2010
3:11 pm

Going to bed now…tomorrow will get here sooner.

SaM Kinison

October 7th, 2010
3:26 pm

Well, Thank You Mr. Helper.

SaM Kinison

October 7th, 2010
3:29 pm

You remember that thing we had about 30 years ago called the Korean conflict? And how we failed to achieve victory? How come we didn’t cross the 38th parallel and push those rice-eaters back to the Great Wall of China?

Thrashers27

October 7th, 2010
3:31 pm

“THERE’S A SALE AT PENNY’S!!!”

BG33Brown

October 7th, 2010
3:55 pm

As of now, I’m very pesimistic about this season. But if I look at the team, I think we have the parts to be successful-they r just in the wrong places.

I’m hopeful that Rammer will figure this out sooner than later.

Prediction; 94 pts, 2nd divsion, and 7th in the conference.

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
4:51 pm

Smitty: I added your choice to the Hat Trick contest.

Alan R.

October 7th, 2010
5:02 pm

Hat trick contest? I’ll bite.

E. Kane. 23 December 2010 in Boston.

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
6:03 pm

You’re in too Alan R.

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
6:09 pm

So as not to screw up General Rawhide’s speech tomorrow morning, here is the list of (25) Thrashers hat trick predictions for the 2010-11 season and beyond. If I missed you, please let me know.

Hat trick by Thrashers predictions

Cornbread
Kane Washington 10/8/10

Kracker
Bergfors Tampa Bay 10/09/10

Putting On The Foil
Bergfors Buffalo 10/20/10

hip czech
Little Tampa Bay 10/22/10

Derrick
Kane Tampa Bay 10/22/10

Brendan
Thorburn NY Rangers 10/27/10

Rawhide
Kane Columbus 11/4/10

Smitty
Antropov Columbus 11/4/10

FormerIslesFan
Kane Chicago 11/6/10

Tony C
Peverley Ottawa 11/9/10

Rob
Bogosian Ottawa 11/09/10

five hole
Bergfors, Minnesota 11/11/10

Joe Friday
Ladd Florida 11/17/10

Spud Webb
Little Florida 11/17/10

Diego from Lilburn
Kane Florida 11/17/10

Rhythmpenguin
Antropov Florida 11/17/10

JB
Dawes NY Islanders 11/21/10

Hooky Bob
Bergfors NY Islanders 11/21/10

Badger Bob
Antropov Toronto 12/20/10

Alan R.
Kane Boston 12/23/10

Zoomo
Antropov Dallas 1/5/11

Red Light
Little Edmonton 2/19/11 *In his hometown!

Dwayne
None this year

R Stroztradmus
None this season

J(Z)
Burmistrov New Jersey 2013

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
6:10 pm

Because I like bold!

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
6:43 pm

Alan R., I’ve already posted your guess twice. It’s not “the comprehensive list,” of ALL guesses, just the most recent guesses being recognized as recorded. Once I post your guess, it’s in. Have you made a revised guess, that I missed? If so, post your revised guess, again, so that I may update your original. With that in mind, here are some more “recent” guesses, “newly added” to the contest.

Tablehockey: 88points, 3rd, and 11th

Adam: “Under” on Modin Watch

Thrashdawg: 87-pts, 3rd, and 9th

Denny: 90-points, 2nd, and 7th

FIF: “over” on Modin Watch

Sisu: Over on “Modin Watch.”

Rawhide: 8th in the Conference, to complete your entry.

Smitty: 94-pts, 2nd, and 7th

BG33Brown: 94-pts, 2nd, and 7th

Good luck to the contestants.

Red Light

October 7th, 2010
6:46 pm

Brendan: Drop the Thrashers to 4th in the division for me.

kracker

October 7th, 2010
8:24 pm

Good luck to all participants in all the contests. Except for a couple of guessers at the end of Red Light’s hat trick contest that said “none”.

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
8:50 pm

Red Light, I have revised your guess from 80 pts, 3rd, and 11th, to 80-pts, 4th, and 11th. You also have “under” in the Modin Watch.

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
8:59 pm

There have been 81 guesses, thus far, in the contest. However, these Regulars are still missing, with less than 24 hours to go, for a point totals pick:

Andrew
Buzilla in CT
Christy
Darren
FrostyTheSnowMan
Get The Puck Out
h
JLH
matt
Mehoff
mike
mutton
NASCARDave
Nathan
Ranallo10 in AT
R.Stroz
Sage of Bluesland
Sara
Scotty
Sharon
Stendec
Thrasher Jim
Thrashdawg74
Toby
Tony C.
Yung JB from MTL
12345

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
9:04 pm

Red Light, are you going to do an East and West Conference rank? I put mine up, with a wing-n-prayer. I flipped a coin between Nashville and Minnesota for the 8th and final playoff spot, in the West.

Rawhide

October 7th, 2010
9:09 pm

Clark MacArthur is off to a good start for the season. He just scored a goal for Toronto in the early moments of the 3rd period to put Leafs up 3-1.

rob

October 7th, 2010
10:28 pm

Did it go in off his head? Maybe knock some sense into him….bum.
No one else wants to go out on a limb for the hat trick guess with a Dman? I can see Bogo or maybe even Buff with a PP, even, and empty netter for the hat trick…..

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
10:55 pm

What?, I’m not out far enough out on a limb with my pick of Chris Thorburn, Rob?

So, in the post-Halak era, Montreal has ALREADY LOST to the projected 15th-place club in the East, their arch rivals, the Toronto Maple Leafs. Sure, fine. What’s one measely game? Answer: Nothing. Let’s talk after 20, and see if Montreal is even in Top 10 in the Eastern Conference.

Brendan

October 7th, 2010
11:31 pm

So, everyone enjoying their FREE Center Ice preview, on Comcast? I’ve actually been flipping between Versus, with the Blackhawks vs. the Avalanche, and the Oilers vs. the Flames. 1-0, Edmonton, after two periods. Carolina won, over in Europe, over Minnesota. Pre-game in Toronto TOOK FOREVER vs. Montreal tonight.

Hockey Biltong

October 7th, 2010
11:38 pm

Hat Trick -Dawes – TB Dolts , this saturday.

Dwayne

October 8th, 2010
6:01 am

…If the Great Stroztradamus predicts no hat trick….I’m just saying….

Spud Webb

October 8th, 2010
8:47 am

Wow, I see RedLight isn’t very optomistic, 80 points??? Come on!!!! Tell you what, I’ll bet you a steak dinner they get more than 80 Redlight, what do you say????????

Tony C

October 8th, 2010
2:27 pm

OK-point prediction…

Put me in for 92 pts, 3rd in SE 8th in EC.

R. Stroz

October 10th, 2010
9:24 pm

Rawhide

October 11th, 2010
4:00 pm

R. Stroz – Nope.