Will resistance be futile as Big Red Borg invade Thrasherville?

As the residence of Thrasherville awake this morning and make their way out of their homes into the streets, they’ll look up and gasp in horor. Greeting them will be a massive mechanical cube hovering overhead. It is the vessel carrying the Big Red Borg, which has made its way here from the Detroit Quadrant if the NHL galaxy and tonight they will invade Philips Arena to battle our Atlanta Thrashers.

The Big Red Borg conduct their activities around one common purpose…to expand their ever-increasing dominance in the NHL, overtake ever NHL opponent they come across and to add the biological and technological distinctiveness of those other opponents into their own in pursuit of hockey perfection.

Or in other words…they’ve come looking to kick our collective butts, much as they have done to others all season long.

The Red Wings bring with them an awe-inspiring 13-3-2 record and lead the Western Conference with 28 points. Their offensive weaponry has scorched opposing goal netting to the tune of 3.67 goals per game, which leads the NHL, and they launch an average of 33.5 shots per game. Defensively they permit the opposition but 27.7 shots per game and have a 2.61 GAA.

They are led into battle by Pavel Datsyuk’s 22 overall points, (7 goals, 15 assists) as well as Henrik Zetterberg’s 7 goals and 13 assists, Danny Cleary’s 9 goals and 5 assists, Johan Franzen’s 9 goals and 4 assists and Todd Bertuzzi’s 3 goals and 12 assists. Bertuzzi is also +11 so far this season.

Balanced scoring, this Red Wing squad has.

Then there is Detroit’s own human cyborg, Nicklas Lidstrom. At the age of 40 he seems to never wear down…if anything he just gets better as he advances throughout the years. He’s dished out 17 assists so far to go along with 3 goals and is a +3 during this 2010-11 NHL campaign. He career +434 is, dare I say, almost superhuman.

In goal they have Jimmy Howard, who is a very impressive 11-1-2 with a 2.46 GAA, .911 SV% with one shutout. The lone team to beat him in regulation was the Vancouver Canuck back on November 6. He has, however, surrendered 11 goals on 90 shots in his last three games, (.878 SV%).

The last time Ondrej Pavelec faced the Detroit Red Wings he and the Thrashers put up a great resistance and his 40 saves were key in the 2-0 win over Detroit. He may need a similar performance tonight (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

The last time Ondrej Pavelec faced the Detroit Red Wings he and the Thrashers put up a great resistance. His 40 saves were key in the 2-0 win over Detroit. He may need a similar performance tonight (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

But will any and all Thrashers resistance be futile in the face of the Big Red Borg’s onslaught tonight?

If Atlanta is to overcome this machine-like enemy, they themselves will have to take on some of the characteristics of the foe they face this Thanksgiving-eve. They must continue their recent trend of eliminating unforced, sloppy errors in the end of the ice, they must find away to match the Wings speed and physicality…and must skate each and every shift as if the Stanley Cup Championship hung in the balance.

Seems simple enough, but this Red Wing team will make you pay dearly for any mistake made and will devour any unit not playing to their full potential. The Thrashers could play a near perfect game and still find themselves on the wrong end of a 3-2 score due to one misplay.

Key to tonight’s game, in my opinion, will be the man between the pipes for the Thrashers, Ondrej Pavelec. The young Czech is sporting a stellar 1.93 GAA and .939 SV% despite a 3-4-2 overall record. Since he relieved Chris Mason in Washington ten days ago, he has turned aside 104 of the 108 shots he’s faced in almost 11 periods of play…a .963 SV% in that time.

Last year just prior to Thanksgiving, Opie kicked out 40 Red Wing shots to help the Thrashers take a 2-0 win in Detroit. If he’s got another one of those performances tucked away in his duffle bag, tonight would be a pretty good time to bring it out.

This is a good a test as the Thrashers will face this season…just as much, if not more, than last Friday when the powerful Washington Capitals paid Thrasherville a visit. Atlanta came a way with a 5-0 decision that night, which was initiated by three early goals on a rookie goalie, but I have a feeling this Red Wing team isn’t going to go quietly into the autumn night if they fall behind early.

And finally…tonight there will no doubt be many in our midst that have already voluntarily submitted and have been assimilated into the Big Red Borg collective. They can easily be spotted wearing their winged-wheeled red and white uniforms and screaming in one loud, unified voice.

Resist, if you can, their attempts to lure you into their hives and hook you into their interconnected electronic tentacles. I’ve seen many of our own fall prey to this monstrous machine already … cough … Sara … cough … Alan R…and it’s quite disturbing seeing friends transformed, even if for just one night, into such an unholy, inhuman form after being caught in the spokes of the Big Red Borg.

85 comments Add your comment

Putting On The Foil

November 24th, 2010
8:13 am

Hopefully Pavs stellar stats will equate into more W’s.

Mr. Heat Miser

November 24th, 2010
8:14 am

Yes those red jerseys will be brought out of mothballs for their once-a-year airing…….

Mr. Heat Miser

November 24th, 2010
8:17 am

“We’ve made too many compromises already; too many retreats. They invade our space and we fall back. They assimilate entire worlds and we fall back. Not again. The line must be drawn here!”

HookyBob

November 24th, 2010
8:18 am

I hope our forwards watch out for Kromwall.

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
8:18 am

Well written, Bill! I’ll be there tonight in red… my red #39 Enström sweater, that is. Lets get the two points!

Rawhide

November 24th, 2010
8:21 am

Mr. Heat Miser – Well played, sir!

Alan R. – That’ll be good to see indeed! Hope to catch up with ya down there tonight.

DWTOO

November 24th, 2010
8:21 am

We’re proud of you Alan R. ! And let’s take the points!

Hoof Arted

November 24th, 2010
8:41 am

Lidstrom is playing in his 19th season and how many times has he finished with a negative +/- rating?

Not once.

Amazing.

World Be Free

November 24th, 2010
8:48 am

Hoof-Lidstrom is the man, he is this generation’s best defenseman. No argument.

Sara

November 24th, 2010
8:53 am

Awww the dark side’s not so bad … in fact the view from the top is quite impressive. :p

I’ve been geeked up for days waiting on this game to get here – my own little hockey nirvana. Love these games, especially when both teams play so well. 7-6 SO thriller is all I ask … such a small thing really.

Uncle Mikey’s post-practice presser from yesterday … fellow Thrashers fans should find things after the 1:00 mark of interest. http://video.redwings.nhl.com/videocenter/

Game on!

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
9:21 am

Blog post from The Chief from Able to Yzerman:

http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.php/a2y/comments/finallysomeone_who_gets_it/

Enjoy the read, Bill. I do believe Chief referred to this blog post as genius. ;)

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
9:23 am

Er… spelling correction. Abel. This time, with autocorrect turned off.

Monkey

November 24th, 2010
9:24 am

WHITE CUPS!!!

Flames

November 24th, 2010
9:27 am

I’ll be there as well. I can’t wait!!! I will be heading over to the Bulb at 11:30 a.m to watch the Red Wings morning Skate. I will give you an update…

Mr. Heat Miser

November 24th, 2010
9:56 am

White Cups – when 32 oz. just isn’t enough.

jen

November 24th, 2010
9:58 am

So back to last blog for a minute….anyone else see the Puck Daddy post on the all star voting and see Kovy below Sean Avery and Paul Bissonette write in campaigns? Even Toby is only 400 votes behind him and no one outside of Atlanta has ever heard of him. Oh how the mighty have fallen

Back to business….always looking forward to my house divided night (hubby from Michigan), Hopefully the Borg calls in sick and the good Thrashers show up. Messy Thrashers will get absorbed and spat out by the collective

Joe McGrath

November 24th, 2010
10:06 am

Interesting to see if our young Burmistrov will get to shadow his idol Pavel Datsyuk.

SomaAtl95

November 24th, 2010
10:13 am

Not much of a Star Trek fan (have seen the movies though) – Didn’t Data sacrifice himself to kill the Borg once and for all? Maybe with the correct face makeup (since we know he has a mirror around already) we can see Hainsey make a sacrifice in order to show the Borg that we will not be part of their evil red machine. Its time to bleed the red shirts out of BLUEland once and for all.
I dream of a day when the majority of Jerseys in our house are Thrashers jerseys. We keep winning and the fairweather fans will support the Thrash – just like all the fairweather fans who love the Falcons – those of us that have lived in Atlanta for decades remember just how bad it would be to be a fan of any of our teams when they were at their worst.

mikey da mug

November 24th, 2010
10:25 am

Nice write-up…
Big Buff makes big impact on Thrashers’ blue line
http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=544416

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
10:30 am

If you’re the Thrashers, this here is a scary statistic for tonight:

DET are 91-0 all time in game 19 of the schedule. They never, ever, lose game 19.

World Be Free

November 24th, 2010
10:33 am

We need some original Star Trek references circa 1966. Good ones like, “I’m a doctor, not a bricklayer!”

Joe Friday

November 24th, 2010
10:48 am

“in fact the view from the top is quite impressive”

Really, De-toilet is at the top? The Blackhawks can’t hear you well enough with all those Stanley Cup rings sticking in their ears, mabye you should yell louder who’s really on top? Pick a club and stick to it, enough of these shallow fairweather “Atlanta fans” who run back to mommy the first time their club comes back into town. I cheered for one club when the Hawks came in week before last, and it wasn’t the defending Cup champs. Go Thrash.

“DET are 91-0 all time in game 19 of the schedule. They never, ever, lose game 19.”

Love seeing stats like this, hopefully you just jinxed your boys. It’s like when during an NFL game they show the stat on screen, “Roethlisberger hasn’t thrown an interception in 278 attempts” . . . you just know what’s coming next, giddyup!

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
11:00 am

Which boys would those be that I jinxed, Joe? Atlanta or Detroit? Just because you’re not a believer of embracing more than one team doesn’t mean I or anyone else can’t be. It also does not make me any less of a fan of either franchise.

I understand you’re just trying to stir up trouble. You look rather petty, though. Especially since you didn’t read anything except my latest comment.

I’m not too flexible, so I can’t exactly tell anyone what foot tastes like. If you’d like to share, I’m all ears :P

Phil Foley - Atlanta Thrashers Examiner

November 24th, 2010
11:49 am

Great work as always Rawhide.

That stat about Detroit being 91-0 in Game 19 isn’t right.

They’ve lost Game No. 19 in three of their last four years, including last year according to hockey-reference.com.

The borg is not invincible. They can be destroyed. It’s a great fable though.

Smoothie

November 24th, 2010
11:53 am

Beat the Borg.

That is all.

Spud Webb

November 24th, 2010
11:54 am

Alan R, that is a CRAZY stat. good work!
Not sure if I’ll be on the next few days but wanted to wish everyone here a safe and happy Thanksgiving!

John

November 24th, 2010
11:57 am

Nice :-)

Kronwall and Bergfors play together this summer in Jarfalla, Sweden. Kronwall and friends was the name of the team.

Niklas Kronwall, Niclas Bergfors, Patric Hornqvist, Douglas Murray, Mattias Norström and Johan Franzén. Kronwall and friends win this game against jarfalla. 6-1 and Bergie scores twice :-)

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
11:59 am

The borg is not invincible. They can be destroyed. It’s a great fable though.

I know. I got Joe, though. Hook, line, and sinker.

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
11:59 am

Apparently, I also got Spud. ;)

Christian Klar

November 24th, 2010
12:00 pm

You will fear The Red Army tonight!!!!

Flagstaff

November 24th, 2010
12:04 pm

Klar: No, we won’t. Kozlov left this past summer.

Thrashers27

November 24th, 2010
12:55 pm

Who in the H-E-double hockey sticks pays attention to stuff like “Game 19″? Not bustin’ your chops, Alan. I’m just curious to find out who has that much time on their hands to keep tabs on stuff like that. That’s a total coincidence, but strange nonetheless. The kind of statistic I would love to see our boys put an end to and I think they can do it. We’ve always played well…okay almost always played well against the Wings. I remember a real barnburner of a game on New Year’s Eve a few years ago.

Kick some red winged butt tonight, boys!

Sara

November 24th, 2010
12:58 pm

Joe Bob Friday, that was *really* the best you could come up with?? A “De-toilet” reference and an assinine comment about Cup rings for the ‘Hawks (cause I’m sure Lidstrom looks at that one Cup ring with such envy since he only has four himself)?? Why don’t you just toss out a “dead things” while you’re recycling the usual tired cliches. And “fairweather ‘Atlanta fans’,”?? *snort* Yeah – cause there’s been sooo much “fair weather” here in Atlanta over the past 11 seasons. Geez, what a maroon.

I have not, do not, and will not apologize for the fact I love two NHL hockey clubs. I had no intention of ditching the Wings once the Thrashers came to be any more than I would ditch the Thrashers should I ever move to some other hockey market in my life. My only regret is that I can’t clone Mike Ilitch and Kenny Holland so they can come down here and run the Thrashers with the same excellent standards they adhere to in Detroit.

Joe Friday

November 24th, 2010
12:58 pm

“I understand you’re just trying to stir up trouble. You look rather petty, though.”

Come on, Motown, git with “The Program”. Does Yzerman still suck? Is Claude Lemieux is the greatest hockey player of all time? Where’s Scotty Bowman working these days?

I know, tough questions, Sally. In case you’re a product of the public school system up there, I’ll lob an easy one for ya: What’s the best thing to come out of De-toilet?

Flames

November 24th, 2010
12:59 pm

I just got finish watching the great Red Wings skate. Burmy stayed after and worked one on one with Coach Torch… This would be a huge win for us…

Joe Friday

November 24th, 2010
1:01 pm

“My only regret is that I can’t clone Mike Ilitch and Kenny Holland so they can come down here and run the Thrashers with the same excellent standards they adhere to in Detroit.”

Too bad you couldn’t clone Scotty! You might have a chance to win another in your lifetime . . . I can’t hear about about Lidstrom’s ancient history, still have that scoreboard! from this year fresh in my mind . . .

Joe Friday

November 24th, 2010
1:07 pm

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
1:15 pm

In case you’re a product of the public school system up there

When I graduated high school, the public education system in Michigan was ranked tenth in the nation. The public education system in Georgia was ranked 48th.

Crow: It’s what’s on Joe’s table this Thanksgiving.

Streethockey Oldtimer

November 24th, 2010
1:16 pm

Alan R.- Until they play for two Cups each season, you can’t really be a 100% fan to two teams. It’s kind of like saying you are 100% committed to both you wife and your girlfriend.

We certainly appreciate your support during the rest of the Thrashers schedule, though. That’s a lot better than the puck fans who only come out when their team comes to town.

World Be Free

November 24th, 2010
1:50 pm

Scotty from “Star Trek”?

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
1:53 pm

Looks like Oldtimer also failed to read my first comment. Oops?

I’m now out of work, and on my way to the CNN Center. Along with the Enström sweater, I’m also in a blue Thrashers hat. Come by and say hi!

jen

November 24th, 2010
2:08 pm

Had to share this…from a while ago, but still one of the best pieces of hockey advertising I’ve ever seen.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fjeeavlf4n4

Streethockey Oldtimer

November 24th, 2010
2:29 pm

No Alan, I read all of your comments here, AND on the Redwings site you linked. That’s why I said what I said.
No big deal, we must just have a different definition of “fan”. Within mine, I could never be happy if the Thrashers lost. You can, if it’s to a certain other team. That’s the difference.
Well, at least we’re all hockey fans. I’d say “enjoy the game”, but how could you not?

Smoothie

November 24th, 2010
2:30 pm

Alan – great choice of jersey! I’ve been thinking about making Enstrom my next jersey but the whites are out of stock on icejerseys.com. I may just need to go with another blue jersey and put “Laddy” on the back with the #16 since a) I wore #16 playing HS baseball and 2) my g/father’s nickname was Laddy. I’d prefer they extend Ladd first tho! I’ve already jinxed Marty Reasoner by putting an ‘A’ on the front of my #19 jersey!! Sorry Marty! But he’s having a good year in FLA so I’m happy for that.

Monkey

November 24th, 2010
2:31 pm

WHITE CUPS.
Bigger than St Louis!

Streethockey Oldtimer

November 24th, 2010
2:41 pm

And Alan, I’m already regretting this conversation. There are enough people in this town that don’t recognize my favorite hat as a Thrashers hat. I shouldn’t be arguing with someone else that wears one. Here’s hoping you enjoy the game for a reason we can both agree on.

Joe Friday

November 24th, 2010
2:41 pm

“The public education system in Georgia was ranked 48th.”

Come on now, Booger , since you’re not catching on too quick, let me help you again on my origins:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1BFfTf8MNE&feature=related

I’m reminded at this time of year how grateful I am for great hockey rivalries like Hawks-Dead Things that bring spectacle and joy to fans everywhere, Happy Thanksgiving (even to you Borgsters)

Don Waddell

November 24th, 2010
2:42 pm

“I’ll lob an easy one for ya: What’s the best thing to come out of De-toilet?”

*sheepishly raises hand*…ahem, er…um. Mind if I take a stab at that one, sparky?

glovesave29

November 24th, 2010
2:50 pm

Fail to see how anyone could spend any amount of cash at all on that hideous red Thrasher jersey.

Alan R.

November 24th, 2010
2:58 pm

Oldtimer – Amen to that!

Bob – Don’t you have a bridge to crawl back under? Seriously. I’m not going to even entertain the idea of tapping your link. (I’m mobile). I wouldn’t click it anyway. The hurr durr trolling is strong, but will be overlooked from now on.

Glovesave – I actually like it. By no means is it the best, but I think it beats out baby blue :P

I’m at the arena, across from Roman Delight.