Archive for February, 2011

Trade deadline comes day after Thrashers finally find a way to win

Today the news wires and twitter feeds will be buzzing throughout the NHL world as yet another trade deadline day is upon us. And with that, just as I do every trade deadline day, I will turn the blog over to you the cyber-reporters of the hockey blogosphere to report and discuss in the comments section below the deals from around the NHL as they happen.

As always, AJC Thrashers beat writer Chris Vivlamore will be on the job bringing us any news of trades involving the home team. You can follow him on twitter –>HERE<–.

Today’s player swap- meet comes just a day after our Thrashers managed to pull off only their second win in the month of February. Trailing 2-0 entering into the third period, Captain Andrew Ladd injected life into the team with a power play goal just 53 seconds in. Then, the Thrashers unleashed their secret offensive weapons on the Leafs…Tim Stapleton and Ron Hainsey.

Ron Hainsey and celebrates his game-winning overtime goal Sunday evening with his teammates. The win was only the second this month for the Thrashers (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Ron Hainsey celebrates his game-winning overtime goal Sunday evening with his teammates. The …

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Looks like a beautiful weekend for hockey in Atlanta

Another busy weekend of Thrashers hockey is upon us gang, and a quick look at the weather reports shows we’ll be greeted with some decent weather in which to enjoy it. The cold front has passed through and temps will be in the mid 60s today and tomorrow, 70 with some clouds Sunday. That should make for a very pleasant environment for all who are gathering in front of Taco Mac prior to tonight’s and Sunday’s game.

Also helping to make this a nice weekend is the story Chris Vivlamore has been working on. If you haven’t already seen this, our fine Thrashers beat writer is informing us that there “are two investment groups that are progressing in an effort to buy the Hawks, Thrashers and Philips Arena and will keep the Thrashers in Atlanta”. That would be great news indeed.

I have little more information on this situation than what you know, so keep an eye on C-Viv as he’ll keep us up to date.

Hopefully we’ll also be able to talk about a couple of wins as the weekend progresses. …

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Fair or not, Craig Ramsay should be held accountable and shown the door

Three and a half years ago, early into the 2007-08 season, the Atlanta Thrashers traveled home from Philadelphia after losing to the Flyers 4-0. The loss was the sixth straight to start off the new campaign and it was also the second time they had been held without a goal that fall.

But before they dropped the puck on game number seven two nights later when the New York Rangers were in town, the organization had made one major change…firing head coach Bob Hartley.

The move came the very next morning after that loss in Philly and to little surprise to many. “He simply had lost the locker room”, many insisted, while some said he was simply a pre-lockout coach trapped in a post-lockout world. Others, myself included, just simply disagreed with the move.

Whatever the case, coach Bob became the second Thrashers coach to be shown the door, following Curt Fraser four years before.

In the wake of Hartley’s dismissal, I opined here the final judgment of whether or not the move was the …

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Thrashers shuffle off to Buffalo in desperate need of a win

Tonight the Thrashers will take on the Sabres up in Buffalo and are in desperate need of coming out western New York with a pair of points. Break it down however you like, tonight’s matchup is just the latest verse in this seasons, “Thrashers Need A Win Real Bad” song.

To illustrate this point let’s turn our attention to the Eastern Conference standings, shall we…

Atlanta and Buffalo both find themselves sitting in the ninth and tenth position in the Eastern Conference. Each has 60 points but the Sabres have two games in hand. Right above them are Carolina and the New York Rangers with 65 and 68 points respectively. The Rangers are coming off a shootout win against the Canes last night. And after their 3-2 win in Vancouver last night, Montreal sits in sixth place with 71 points.

Lurking just below is Toronto, Florida and New Jersey. Thanks to a 2-1 win over the Islanders, the Leafs are but a single point behind the Thrashers while the Panthers have 57 points. The Devils are …

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Could it be Thrashers are going nowhere soon?

According to this tweet by John Kincade, it would seem that there is possibly an ownership group interested in the Atlanta Thrashers…one that would be interested in not only taking the NHL team off the hands of the Atlanta Spirit, but keep them in Atlanta as well. Not only that, but this group is also interested in the Hawks and Philips Arena too.

I spoke with Kincade earlier this morning and he told me, “All I can say is I can confirm that there is legitimate interest in someone buying control of the Hawks, Thrashers and Philips”.

“Serious candidate”, the co-host of 680 AM The Fan’s Buck and Kincade Show went on to add. “Not like a guy like Rollins”.

When I pressed a little more for additional information, Kincade only said, “There are reasons of confidences shared as to why I am not naming names. I will let this scenario play out”.

OK John, you have our attention. Hopefully this story has some wings to it.


Also on the topic of the Thrashers …

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Friday night February 25, 2011 at Philips Arena – Be there Thrasherville

On Friday night February 25th, 2011 the Atlanta Thrashers will host the Florida Panthers in a Southeast Conference showdown. The scheduled start time for the game is the same as it is for all Friday home games in Atlanta and exactly one week from the posting of this blog, 7:30pm.

If you are a fan of the Thrashers…if you’re a fan of NHL hockey and support the league remaining in this city…. if you have been sickened by what the team’s current ownership has allowed this franchise to become…if you are mad as hell about what you’ve learned recently… then you need to be there.

In saying that, I’m looking at all of you out there in the blogosphere…all of you who frequent this online hockey forum as well as the one hosted by AJC Thrashers beat writer Chris Vivlamore. And that’s quite a lot of individuals, so I’m told.

I’m looking at those fans who normally make it to just a handful of games each season. I’m even looking at those who may make it to but one. If that’s the case…make …

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Thrashers take on Coyotes as fans deal with ‘The Morning After’

The collective moaning and groaning heard throughout town this morning was the sound of Thrashers fans rolling out of bed still feeling the effects of being kicked in the gut yesterday. It’s the feeling you might experience after a long night of consuming hot wings and washing it all down with vast quantities of adult beverages…only without the benefit of actually enjoying the wings and drinks the night before.

Yes…it’s the morning after in Thrasherville.

In case you were away from your internet-fed computer or not tuned in to AM sports talk radio, here is the story in a nutshell:

Atlanta Spirit co-owner Michael Gearon let it be know via the AJC that there was a “sense of urgency” to find additional investor or an outright buyer for the Thrashers who would be willing to keep the team in Atlanta. He stated that they were faced with that as a serious alternative if no one steps forward and indicated that it would be tough to stomach any more $20 million losses.

Later in the …

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Atlanta Spirit, LLC slaps Thrashers fans in the face again

Ya know…it is seriously tough being a Thrashers fan. I mean, here we are celebrating the great news that Dustin Byfuglien has just signed a contract extension to remain with the team for five additional years and then…this info-bomb.

Seriously, couldn’t the Spirit Clowns at least have given us a full 24 hours before dropping this on us?

I guess the mighty revelation last month that he and his fellow partners had lied to us for years wasn’t enough of a slap to our collective faces, eh?

Like so many of you out there, what really frustrates me to no end is that the fans here in Atlanta are not to blame. Contrary to popular belief outside of Thrasherville, Atlanta is home to a great number of die-hard hockey fans and sports fans in general. However, given what this franchise has become since The Great Octocluster purchased them seven years ago…many of those fans have chosen to spend their sports entertainment dollars elsewhere.

So when someone like Michael Gearon makes the comment …

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Thrashers fans want answers from team owners

If you take a look outside, you’ll see the sun shining and the sky a brilliant shade of blue. We here in north Georgia and in other areas of the south are enjoying some very fine weather, even though it’s just a tease of what awaits us this spring.

However, there is also a dark, menacing cloud that remains camped above Thrasherville. It’s been there since the turn of the New Years and has cast a shadow of misery over hockey fans throughout the city.

Obviously, some of this stems from the current slide that the Thrashers have been on for the better part of a month and a half now…one that has seen them play to a 6-12-5 record since the 20th of December last year. However, Thrashers fans are quite used to the feeling that normally accompanies watching the team fall off the edge of the playoff table ‘round about this time of year. It’s almost a routine in these parts…a time honored ritual that serves as a rite of passage. You can’t really be a Thrashers fan, it seems, unless …

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Hard to get happy after Thrashers loss to Canes

After Sunday night’s loss to Carolina, the family and I made our way back home where we watched a little TV before the wife and boys made their way to bed. I stayed up to try and pound out some words about the Thrashers’ latest setback. Honestly though, given the state of mind I was in following such a heartbreaking loss…I just wasn’t feeling it. So I went to bed in hopes I’d feel a little better in the morning.

Morning came, but I really felt no better.

See…after the Thrashers “Kaned” the New York Rangers Friday night, I really thought that win had the ability to finally snap this team awake from it’s mid-winter’s nightmare. It was the kind of victory that…if indeed they used it as a springboard to a successful playoff drive…the fans of Thrasherville could point back to and say that “this” was where it all began to turnaround for the team.

Ondrej Pavelec turns away Marian Gaborik's penalty shot Friday night (Michelle Rivers)

Ondrej Pavelec turns away Marian Gaborik's penalty shot Friday night. While the Thrashers were able to take advantage of this great play …

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