Thrasherville troops preparing for another NHL campaign

In a hangar at Dobbins ARB the Thrasherville masses are assembled. Gen. Rawhide takes to the stage, moves to center-front and addresses the troops

At ease, men…ahem…and ladies.

For decades now, Stanley Cup winners returning from the playoffs enjoyed the honor of a triumph – a tumultuous parade. In the procession came trumpeters and musicians, together with carts laden with awarded treasure and captured hockey equipment. The head coach rode in a triumphal convertible, the dazed members of the press who wrote it would never happen walked before him. The players, robed in white jerseys, rode behind him in their convertibles, or rode in backs of flatbed trucks. The general manager stood behind the coach, holding the silver Cup, and whispering in his ear a warning: that all glory is fleeting.

Well, fleeting or not…I want to experience that glory!

Today, as we have at this time since 1999, we stand at the precipice of another Thrashers campaign. And tonight we’ll gather once more in the theater of operations known as Philips Arena to begin the eleventh season of battle for our home, Thrasherville.

Unfortunately, all previous endeavors have seen the fight come up short of total victory…only once advancing far enough as to claim a playoff birth. In the past, we have seen our troops go into battle with a porous defense, questionable goaltending and certain forwards that thought only of self-first, not team.

Thrashers defending their zone were attacked by legions of enemy skaters. The Thrashers were proud and brave but they couldn’t hold. They were massacred. Opposing forwards stripped them of their pucks and sticks…as well as various other athletic protective and supportive gear. The goalies lay naked, alone to face the assault. This has happened for the past ten seasons.  No glory…fleeting or otherwise.

I was there…as were many of you too.

But if there is one thing we’ve learned, it’s that no poor, dumb team has ever won a championship by constantly defending their goal. You win by making the other poor, dumb players defend theirs. Tonight, the Capitals are the enemy. Wade into them, pour into their end of the ice. Attack their zone. Shoot at their goal.

Now there’s one other thing I want you to remember. I don’t want any messages posted here this season saying that we are doing fine despite losses…that we are, in essence, “holding our positions” until wins finally come.

We’re not holding anything! Let the other team do that!

We are taking the puck and advancing constantly…we’re not interested in holding anything except the enemy. We are going to hold on to him by the nose and we’re going to kick him in the butt. We’re going to kick the snot out of him all the time and we’re going to go through him like a Varsity chilidog.

Remember, all real hockey players and fans love the sting of on-ice battle. When you were kids, you all admired the Stanley Cup Champion team, the fastest skater, the best NHL players, and the toughest enforcer. Hockey fans love a winner and will not tolerate a loser. You must play to win all the time. Losses are not acceptable…not even overtime losses that come with the consolation “loser” point.

It’s time for the Big, Bad, Blue Brigade to show up in force

With the beginning of another Thrashers season, it’s time for the Big, Bad, Blue Brigade to show up in force

Why, I wouldn’t give a bag of used, chipped pucks for a player or fan that lost and laughed.

As for those pundits up north whose preseason predictions have the Thrashers finishing low, even last, in the standings…why, the blow-hards who wrote that stuff in the on-line hockey blogosphere don’t know anything more about that than they do about forechecking. This week everyone started out 0-0-0 again, and anything…yes, anything…can happen.

Anything, that is, if this Thrashers’ squad play as a team. It must live, eat, sleep, skate, play and fight as a team. This individuality stuff is a bunch of male bovine excretion!

Some of you who are stationed in the stands, rooting for our on-ice combatants, are concerned that when the time comes you won’t know what to do. Well, let me tell you something. When you put your hand into a bunch of goo that just moments before was the clean, unsoiled crest of your brand new Thrashers jersey…and that goo is the remains of a hotdog smothered in ketchup, mustard and relish, spilled on you my some obnoxious, uncouth fan of the visiting team…well by God, you’ll know what to do.

Now, there’s one thing that you men…and ladies… will be able to say when this campaign is over, and you may thank the hockey gods for it. Thirty years from now when you’re sitting around your fireside with your grandson on your knee, and he asks you, “What did you do in the great Thrashers hockey campaign of 2010-11”, you won’t have to say, “Well, son… I shoveled snow in Buffalo”.

Alright now, you know how I feel. I will be proud to lead you wonderful men and women into battle anytime, anywhere. Or at least at Philips Arena…and TJ’s tomorrow night.

That is all.

166 comments Add your comment

Brendan

October 8th, 2010
8:22 pm

Peverley scores!!! No!!! It’s waived off. And now Erskine has gone after Peverley on a TEAR! There’s a scuffle now. The goal won’t count. Peverley jammed the crease, but the ref blew the whistle. Erskine took exception to the late tap-in by Peverley. Bogosian is breaking it up now.

swede

October 8th, 2010
8:23 pm

The question is why didnt dawes pass kane who was clean.?

Tom

October 8th, 2010
8:40 pm

Pavelec regained consciousness according to CViv’s tweet. Good news but what a strange and ominous start to the season.

Thrashers27

October 8th, 2010
9:04 pm

I haven’t seen Burmistrov lose a single faceoff. The kid’s looking good so far.

Joe now we're talkin' Friday

October 8th, 2010
9:27 pm

This is my kind o’ hockey. On Kane’s penalty shot that he converted, there were 3, count ‘em fellas, 3 Thrashers in the Caps’ goalies grill. 3. I have been watching this club for 10 years and I think I’ve seen three guys crashing their crease total in 10 years and 2 of ‘em were Ice Girls. . . woot. Now we’re talkin hockey, giddyup.

Joe this is why Mason is your #1 Friday

October 8th, 2010
9:28 pm

’cause he don’t faint . . .

Joe did I say that out loud Friday

October 8th, 2010
9:28 pm

Tom

October 8th, 2010
9:30 pm

Joe Friday. Amen brother. Resposible in our zone with the puck and in their grill on offense. If we start shooting more on the power play I will do a Pavelec…

Brendan

October 8th, 2010
9:32 pm

Thrashers 3, Capitals 1, after two periods. What a finish this could be!

Thrashers27

October 8th, 2010
10:15 pm

WOOOOHOOOOO!!!!!!!!

Great game boys! Speedy recovery, Pavs!

Tom

October 8th, 2010
10:19 pm

Wow, that was a great game by the boys. Big saves by Mason, solid go to the net by the offense, and solid if not great defense. Kane looks like he can be a real leader on the team. He almost short circuited the Hat Trick contest.

Putting On The Foil

October 8th, 2010
10:32 pm

What a solid performance by the Thrash. Great D, great puck movement and stick handling, good goaltending, and 4 is more than 2. All together great team effort. Also thought Burmy was solid and was playing to stick.

kracker

October 8th, 2010
10:39 pm

Thrash win!! I was on the glass forf 2 and 3!

Brendan

October 8th, 2010
10:56 pm

Craig Ramsay and John Torchetti are 1.000 pct as Thrashers, in the only games THAT COUNT. Hopefully, they dedicated this win, in the lockeroom, to Ondrej Pavelec.

Cornbread

October 8th, 2010
11:05 pm

This is a better hockey team than any time last season. Let’s hope it was nothing more than dehydration and overheating with Pavs.

Russ

October 8th, 2010
11:09 pm

Great win tonight. My thoughts are with Opie. I hope it’s nothing serious and he can come back and give the Thrashers 20-25 starts this season.

Obviously, nobody knows how the season is going to go based on one game, but at the very least this team isn’t going to be fun to play against, which is much more than could be said in the past. Great start, let’s keep it going tomorrow in Tampa.

Joe Friday

October 8th, 2010
11:20 pm

Fellas, that was one well coached hockey club…good things happen when u go to the net puck opponent….

R. Stroz

October 8th, 2010
11:31 pm

Well done troops!

Hockey Biltong

October 8th, 2010
11:42 pm

where was the radiio feed???
nice to meet you Diego!!!

R. Stroz

October 8th, 2010
11:42 pm

Brendan – Who came in second on the salary contest?

Hockey Biltong

October 8th, 2010
11:43 pm

“Don’t tread on me!!”

litz

October 8th, 2010
11:51 pm

For those who haven’t seen it : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ieqeCnA_TjM

utterly frightening

Great game (other than that), though – arena was full (or as full as blocking off the 400-level seats gets you), loud, and raucus. There was a noticable “Win it for Ondre” feel amongst the crowd, and obviously the team as well.

The guys went out there and played HOCKEY (something we haven’t seen much of in this town), and the crowd sure appreciated it.

162 more points for the perfect season!

stendek

October 9th, 2010
12:04 am

stendek

October 9th, 2010
12:10 am

Hello Mr Rawhide sir. I am tremendously distressed by what happen4ed to young Thrasher netminder. Proud of way team rallied to win one for youngster. Would be utterly joyful right now but thoughts are with ailing goaltender. Since SportSouth chose bot to air contest I was forced to view horrifying collapse on SportsCenter. Could tell something was terribly wrong. Have apprehension for young athlete. Please do me a favor Bill. Tell him Stendek wishes him well. Speediest of recoveries. Young man has worked hard. Hope to see him between the pipes soon. Real soon. Congratulations for a total team effort Thrashers. Under worst possible circumstances. STENDEK

Joe The Naked Truth Friday

October 9th, 2010
12:21 am

Fellas, he fainted. Stop and think about that. I’m not privy to his medical charts, EKG, blood pressure, or anything else, but the sweetheart flat out fainted. Mason is your #1, but the good news is Ramsay has a firm grasp on the rest of the club and that was one well coached hockey club out there tonight, this will be a good year to watch!

R. Stroz

October 9th, 2010
12:22 am

Stendek – Two of your least favorite players were on opposite teams tonight. The result: Kari Lehtonen’s team, the Dallas Stars, beat Ilya Kovalchuk’s team, the New Jersey Devils.

Your thoughts?

R. Stroz

October 9th, 2010
12:24 am

Joe Bob Friday – Lets just hope for Pavelec’s sake that he doesn’t have narcolepsy.

Alan R.

October 9th, 2010
12:30 am

Fellas, he fainted. Stop and think about that.

I’m not a doctor, but one doesn’t slip into and out of consciousness if it’s something as little as a faint.

We’re not privy to his medical condition at all. It could be anything from the flu, to a low blood sugar, or even as severe as a heart condition. We don’t know, and neither do you.

Now, I’m not disputing the fact that Mason isn’t the number one. At this point, he certainly has a firm grasp on that top goalie position. We are in agreement on that one.

Rawhide

October 9th, 2010
12:31 am

Can’t even tell you what a great game that was to be at. Awesome effort all around.

I was sitting with one of the doctors of the team in 104 when Pavelec went down. Aftr he came back to the seat he said he was trying to get off the ice, trying to get the bench’s attention…but went down backwards and hit his head on the ice.

Shortly before the first intermission, he got a call on his cell, nodded at me that it was about Pavs then took off.

As everyone has heard, he was awake and alert later at the hospital asking for score updates. Great news there.

Thoughts and prayers to Opie for a speedy recovery from whatever it was that ailed him tonight. I wanted to Mason in goal, but not that way.

Another reminder, some of us will be at TJ’s in Alpharetta tomorrrow night. Come join us if ya can.

Now, gonna see if the Braves can pull out this game in San Fran…

stendek

October 9th, 2010
12:36 am

Hi R Stroz. Like choosing Lucifer or deep blue sea. Hate both the heartless bestards! Choice goes to Kari by slimmest of margins. Have grown so sick over all hoopla and unnecessary drum beating over Iamill Kovalchoke contract. Always hated Devils anyway. Damn New Jersey Yankee bluebellies. Neither player is worth shet in my humble estimation. Thanks for asking though. My prayers are now with our young goalie. STENDEK PS – Was watching football. Gave up on Squaws, uh, Braves in playoffs.

Nate

October 9th, 2010
12:39 am

Fun game to be at night. Good atmosphere and a heckuva effort by the team tonight. Nice to hear Pavs is okay. Maybe Kane can replace Kovalchuk as the team’s 40 goal guy???

Brendan

October 9th, 2010
12:42 am

Here’s the boxscore: http://www.nhl.com/ice/boxscore.htm?id=2010020011

Kane had two tallies, for 2-pts, and was a +1, with 18:24 in ice time. Well done, young man.

At +1 were: Sopel, Hainsey, Kane, Little, Ladd, Bergfors, Thorburn.

At -1 was: Nigel Daees

Here’s how the D-minute broke down

1. Bogosian: 25:09
2. Oduya : 24:13
3. Enstrom: 21:19
4. Byfuglien: 19:05
5. Sopel: 16:44
6. Hainsey: 13:47

Goals came from Ladd (deflection), Modin (wicked shot – those who took “over” on ‘Modin Watch ‘10-11′ are smiling,), and two from Kane, one a twisted wrister and the other a Penalty Shot conversion.

Assists came from Bergfors, Oduya, and Antropov

stendek

October 9th, 2010
12:48 am

I rant and rave quite a bit. I understand that. Get angry at Thrashers because I want so desperately for them to succeed. Never want any of them permanently injured. When they go elsewhere that is different tale. Wanted broken neck for EAGLE Michael Sick. Since Makeuill Kovalchoke and Sori Letemin now in non Thrasher uniforms…a pox on both the hearttless untalented pieces of commode residue. That bestard Maryann Hosebag will get his sooner or later too. Hope it is damn sooner! Stanley Cup my a$$! STENDEK

Brendan

October 9th, 2010
12:53 am

Forgot to mention that Jeff Schultz, (not that one,) was the only “plus” player for the Capitals. Burmistrov played 12:09, in his Thrashers debut, with no goals, no assists, and no points, with an “even” plus/minus.

Ovechkin played 23:21. Mike Green logged a WHOPPING 27:38. Shots on goal were even at 31 apiece. Mason collects the win. Neuvirth gets tagged with the loss.

Joe Friday

October 9th, 2010
1:02 am

“I’m not a doctor, but one doesn’t slip into and out of consciousness if it’s something as little as a faint.”

Yeah, uh, I only play a doctor here on the blogs, Nurse Ratchet, but that’s kind of like the definition of fainting, Dr. Kildare.. Low blood sugar or low nutsack, the boy flat out fainted and NHL goalies don’t faint, Sally. . . only question left is who’s #2 now . . .

Brendan

October 9th, 2010
1:18 am

Joe Friday, now I wish Jose Theodore hadn’t been signed by the Wild for the paltry sum of $1.1 million. That’d be a “quick fix.” Cap room doesn’t appear to be an issue, per capgeek.com. Of course, we don’t really know how long Pavelec is out. If he did just “faint,” people recover from that, rather quickly. No need to go sign a new goaltender. Of course, I’m wondering why and what caused Pavelec’s misfortune, tonight. Are you thinking Mannino?

Brendan

October 9th, 2010
1:27 am

R.Stroz, re: 11:42PM post, the 2nd closest guess in the “Budget Contest” was … (drumroll, please) … Mikey.

Here’s the link to the $42,014,167 cap for the Atlanta Thrashers: http://www.capgeek.com/charts.php?Team=7. I still don’t see how it’s permissible to be UNDER the $43.4 million floor of the cap, without facing sanctions/penalties for violating the CBA.

Flames

October 9th, 2010
7:42 am

Awesome game!!! The arena was electric! That is how we needed to start the season. I thought Zach Bogosian played hid tail off.

waffleboy

October 9th, 2010
8:17 am

Can’t see how anyone would belittle an athlete who collapses during a game. I though Hank Geathers would’ve taught us an important lesson about that, Joe Friday. We have no idea what caused him to collapse, but to question his manhood makes me question yours.

Always Hoping

October 9th, 2010
8:20 am

I noticed at the end of the game Andrew Ladd made a point to go grab the puck from the ref. I’m not sure who he handed it to but I found it to be an outstanding move on his part.

waffleboy

October 9th, 2010
8:36 am

Pretty sure that puck will be going to Ramsay, though he may give it to Pavs.

Tom

October 9th, 2010
8:40 am

Ladd gave the puck to Mason during the handshakes. 1st win with the new team is my guess.

Zoomo

October 9th, 2010
8:53 am

Nice to see a number of the bloggers last night, and nice to meet Mr & Mrs H. Biltong.

Great start to the seasonn. Really thought the team moved the puck incredibily well in the first period. Lots of short crisp passing and no one keeping the puck on their stick for very long. Most of that period was spent in our offensive zone.

Kane’s first goal was a beauty. Nice pick off at the blue line, a few jukes, and a great shot. We couldn’t see what happened on the penalty shot, but saw on the reply this morning that Green or one of Caps put his hand on the puck in the crease.

Team looked focused and well coached. I saw things I’ve seen only rarely from other Thrashers’ teams. Lots of crease presence, good puck movement in our D zone – looks like Anderson’s “chip it up the boards” is a thing of the past- and a good number of short and on the tape passes.

I think that I noticed all of the players at various times, no one was invisible. Lots of contributions. That was my first real look at Burmy. The kid got pushed around a bit in the corners, but played a nice game. He’s going to be a very good player in the future and might not be too shabby now.

Let’s hope that Kaner’s showing is waht we’ll see all year. No sophmore slump last night!

Just a great, great night and a fun start to the season. I’d be nice to see a decent road trip and come back with some momentum.

LAC

October 9th, 2010
9:09 am

I was so IMPRESSED with the win last night, I am speechless. A complete team effort, everyone working toward the SAME goal and not revolving around one player.

I do hope & pray Pavs returns to good health… I know, I am still just getting back to a sense on normal.

I am also impressed beyond words with Craig Ramsey, He Get’s it, Knows it and Teaches it.
Did you see him on the bench right after Pav’s was wheeled off, Total Coach, something Fraiser & Anderson never were, and a better teacher than Hartley, and he could show up and do nothing and be a Hall of Fame coach compared to what that waddell ever did behind the bench.

Great game, loved watching the “so called” great 8, look like an Average player who had NO effect on the game whatsoever. Great again, now go whip TB.

OmniFan

October 9th, 2010
9:46 am

One of the best Atlanta Thrasher games ever, a throwback to Flames hockey. Team played a system-don’t recall ever seeing that in Blueland. Kane served notice that he has arrived as a true power forward. Burmi was impressive for his energy and hockey sense-was in the right places at the right times, covered for some linemates slip-ups. Buff was solid, forced some turnovers. Glad our new players got to hear a loud Bulb. Hope we have more of the same as the season goes on.
Kudos to the hockey community for its support for Pavs and doubly glad he’s feeling OK this AM. Please, though, make sure his ticker is OK before putting him back out there. We don’t need another Hank Gaithers (sp?).

waffleboy

October 9th, 2010
9:52 am

Great stats on last night’s game: Sopel with 8 blocked shots, Oduya and Bogo clearly the number one pair, perfect on the pk against last year’s number pp unit. And how about Chris Thorburn being 100% on the face-offs? If we can stay strong up the middle, we can be tough to beat.

HookyBob

October 9th, 2010
9:53 am

Great start to the season,..with one huge exception (or question mark now).

Here’s hoping Pav’s will be back on the ice soon. Seeing him lying,…absolutely motionless,…for so many minutes, really gives one pause. (I think you could have heard crickets in Philips Arena.) Relieved to hear he’s on the mend,..hope it is not a career threatening condition.

JF,…did you, by chance, sleep at a Holiday Inn Select last night?

Back to the game,…R Stroz,..can you confirm that was the Thrashers in blue last night? Could those aliens have returned? Our guys played the most team oriented game of any Thrasher’s game I have ever seen or heard. Multiple & crisp passing plays, fine positional play, cycling the puck, good work on the boards (even our little guys), effective clears / breakouts, back-checking, limiting time and space of the Caps, etc. All served up with to the Caps with some “grit” thrown in. Loved it when Buf forced Ovie to a wide angle shot, then knocked him to the ice.

Totally agree with JF on it being a well-coached team we witnessed. Seems like the players are not only picking up the new system quickly,..but it is a good, effective NHL system. The opposition will soon have film to review and could make things tougher.

Alas,..one good game does not a successful season make. Before I get too gushy,…the Boys in Blue have a tough task at hand tonight. We need a strong game in Tampa, a team we’ve had trouble with, and supposedly one of the NHL’s most improved teams this season (well, according to the pundits).

However, after witnessing a Thrashers team last night that totally unlike any previous team,..I am feeling confident going forward. IDWT.

Tip of the hat to Sage for correcting me last week. It is Stollberger on the post game show.

Also a tip of the hat to alll the fans of other teams who sent their prayers and best wishes for Pav’s recovery. Thanks to the Caps players for the stick taps too.

Stendek,…good to see you posting again.

Go Blue.

glovesave29

October 9th, 2010
10:06 am

“It’s something where you step up and play hard,” said Dustin Byfuglien, who spoke up in the dressing room to win the game for Pavelec. “He wouldn’t have quit working if it happened to someone else. We can’t do the same. We felt bad for him. As a team we had to come together and get the victory for him.”

THAT is how you earn a “C” on your jersey. Perhaps Mr. Byfuglien is the man to lead the troops.

See everyone at TJ’s tonight!

Mikey

October 9th, 2010
10:14 am

Brendan, I won? I won? Whoo-hoo!! This is great. What an honor. I am speechless.

Now, what did I win?

Red Light

October 9th, 2010
10:14 am

Great hockey. Caps got credited with 25 hits and few were at all effective. Not sure if many of you noticed Ladd’s hit on Ovechkin (nice!) in the 3rd. Particularly impressive was Atlanta’s defensive positioning – no Chinese fire drills last night as in year’s past – and the fact Ramsay used Burmistrov and Stewart on the penalty kill. I was very impressed with how well organized they looked on “d” in their first game. Things could be looking up around here. We’ll see.