Better effort but same result for Thrashers

I wasn’t able to attend the game against the Calgary Flames Thursday night. There were some pre-planned events that the Divine Mrs. R had asked me to help with and…seeing she is always very understanding with my hockey schedule… when she does ask me to stay back and render assistance, I gladly oblige.

Because of that, I was able to listen a bit to Dan Kamal on my car radio as well as follow some of it on TV with Matt McConnell and Darren Eliot. As I switch from one media outlet to the other throughout the evening, all three were saying much the same thing regarding the Thrashers play…that the effort and work ethic on the ice was far better than what was on display during the 4-1 loss to the Islanders Tuesday.

Freddy Meyer fell to the ice late in the second period of Thursday game against Calgary. He was able to skate off the ice on his own power and is listed with an upper body injury (AP/John Bozeman)

Freddy Meyer fell to the ice late in the second period of Thursday game against Calgary. Team official say he suffered an upper body injury (AP/John Bozeman)

Indeed, they did perform much better than they have of late. They were fighting hard and doing a lot of things right on the ice. But until the NHL starts giving out points in the standing for playing respectably, none of that really matters…does it?

Sure, as Eliot said afterwards, sometimes you have to show yourself you can play well again before the results come. However, the current tailspin the Thrashers are in does not allow much time for that to eventually come around. The points have to start coming with the effort now.

Too many times since New Years, this team has found itself tied or within a goal during the latter stages of the game…only to find themselves on the wrong end of the score after 60 minutes have been played. This was true in the game against Toronto a few weeks back, against Philadelphia and in Dallas just after that and most recently this week against the Islanders when a 1-0 first period lead turned into a 2-1 deficit late in the second.

Those games resulted in 9-3, 5-2, 6-1 and 5-1 losses respectively.

Thursday night, Atlanta held took a 2-1 after Nik Antropov fed a nice pass over Anthony Stewart for his 13th goal of the season. It was a lead they held for all of 55 seconds before Brendan Morrison knocked home a pass from Mark Giordano. But regardless, it was a game they had within their reach going into the third and….and…and…

…sigh…

As has been the case all too many times, confusion in front of the net and the inability to clear the puck lead to what would be the game-losing goal. It came with just under six minutes to play and the Thrashers were unable to recover from it.

About the only thing to get even halfway happy about after this latest disappointment is that Carolina was beaten by Toronto 3-0 while the Flames were winning their first game in Atlanta since they called the city home. What it leaves us with is the Thrashers still up on the Canes by one point in the standings and one huge game in Raleigh on tap for Saturday night.

They’ll need another good effort in Carolina that night. Only this time, the effort better come with points…or this mid-winter tumble will roll them right out of the eighth and final playoff spot.

By: Bill Tiller – AJC.com Thrashers Fan Blog

198 comments Add your comment

World Be Free

February 5th, 2011
2:49 pm

Smoothie-please send me the link to your article.
Dudley will have a tough time making a trade because everyone in the league knows he needs to make one. Duds will not make a knee-jerk deal with the Coburn/Zhitnik fiasco.

Cliff Fletcher

February 5th, 2011
3:01 pm

Acer

February 5th, 2011
3:09 pm

A rumor with little substance.

Cliff Fletcher

February 5th, 2011
4:00 pm

acer-hope you are correct for sure

alex

February 5th, 2011
4:04 pm

very good news for gearon, levenson and remaining asg. finally they going to achieve there’s ultimate goal running nhl out from atlanta, getting 200 mil. for last litigation with king spalding group. live is good. only last wish, please let dw pitch the shovels in winnipeg locker as assistant of team mas sager. the resume with business degree and outstanding record in atlanta included.

Tom

February 5th, 2011
4:45 pm

Hey Mike, learn to spell and capitalize and then we can have a discussion. Grammar, not the old lady living in the guest room, is optional.

Tom

February 5th, 2011
4:57 pm

Reading the interview with Dudley they finish up with the Buffs/Ladd negotiations and how they are still talking.

Let’s be honest, getting guys to stick in Atlanta is hard right now with the moronic ownership and the fan base looking for reassurances.

The way to get the fans fired up is to over pay these 2 guys for a few years. Yep, spend too much on them. Offer Buff 5 years at 27.5 million and Laddy 5 at 22.5. Build on them. They both seem to enjoy being here and the young guys look up to them.

Then when we have to start negotiating with other guys they will be more willing to keep the locker room together and fight for each other.

We have to get rid of the cheapskate mentality. Guys will take a discount to play for the Red Wings, not the Thrashers….

Tom Lysiak

February 5th, 2011
5:11 pm

Tom, I believe mike may have been addressing me. No way to really know, but just in case…..

hey mike – sorry, but I didn’t get but about two things you said there. Let me make my position absolutely clear for ya here:

1) I can’t stand the owners and what they have done TO the team, as well as what they have not done FOR the team. Heck, everybody hates them. I also can’t stand liars.

2) I think Waddell’s record stands on it’s own, ready to be dissected. Look at the win/loss records. Look at the drafting history. Look at the farm team and the disconnect with the big club. Look at the players in the system or lack thereof. He would not have kept his job in most cities, with most owners, for this long. He served a purpose for these owners. On the other hand, what GM would have worked for these owners that long?

3) I am a fan of the Atlanta Thrashers. I’m not a fan of ASG. I’m not a fan of Don Waddell. I don’t own any jerseys or sweatshirts that say ASG or DW on them. Get it? I also am not obsessed with getting the owners and Waddell back in any way. That will take care of itself.

4) I was here when the Flames were sold and moved away. We got lucky when we got a second chance. There won’t be a third.

5) There are a couple of old women who post on here calling people names, being condescending, and trying to intimidate some regular bloggers. They want people to stop supporting the team in person, and denigrate anyone who dares not agree with their “plan”. They claim that their “plan” will force a sale and the new owners will keep the team here and we’ll all live happily ever after. They don’t know squat.

6) I have enough money to buy tickets, not the whole team. Just FYI.

7) Summing it up for you mike, I’m not happy with the owners, Waddell, or the product they have put on the ice. But, I am happy to be able to see NHL games live and in person within a 30 minute drive. I just want to be able to continue doing that. Clear enough for you?

Tom Lysiak

February 5th, 2011
5:20 pm

Tom, I’m with you on the Buff and Ladd signings. With all this turmoil and lawsuits though, it is hard to see that actually coming about. I know if I were Buff or Ladd, I would be hesitant to sign long term anyway, with the “storied” franchise history. Then, you add these less than truthful, clownish owners in the mix and it becomes a harder sell. Finally, when you add the uncertainty of the team being sold and possibly having to move again, just not real attractive all of a sudden. That is my fear of why the contracts haven’t been worked out. Hope I am wrong!!!

Cliff Fletcher

February 5th, 2011
5:25 pm

we all know where the problems lie with the team and what is needed to fix them. bettman has stepped in before to keep franchises from moving, find ways to fix problems that are no fault of the fans. lets hope he does the same here, the hockey fans of atlanta deserve a chance to repeat what they did the first few seasons the thrashers were here, supposrting a bad team with the hope they would get better. changes need to be made or this team won’t make it in any city.

Joe Friday

February 5th, 2011
6:26 pm

Bettman and Daly’s comments and lack of support are beginning to get some context

tonyb

February 5th, 2011
6:43 pm

Remember, this is the Canadian press, whose agenda it is to get a sunbelt team to move back to Winnipeg. This rumor goes directly against everything Bettman said last week at the all star game. He does not want to lose this city, and he will give the city every opportunity to keep the team.

People, you have to toughen up. Atlanta is the capital city of the south, Regardless of what you read in the Canadian press, the population trends are showing that northerners are relocating to his region in huge numbers. The NHL knows that. The NHL needs TV money. To be honest, the NHL needs Atlanta a hell of a lot more than Atlanta needs the NHL. If the NHL ushers out huge teams like Atlanta and Phoenix, for po dunk little places like Winnipeg or Quebec City, the league will again be viewed as a nice little regional sports league rather than a,major player with baseball, basketball and of course, football. Goodluck seeing that huge espn or fox deal when you just turned your back on the capital city of southern region of the US, and all of its millions of people and all of its billions of dollars.

mrfixit

February 5th, 2011
6:47 pm

We have no way of knowing what is going to happen. I have lost a lot of interest because of what has taken place. The team has proformed well the first half, the past month, well look at the record.
If they can right the ship with more solid zone play and shore up the porus defense, we just might make it. However, if not, that may well be it. We have to have a massive forecheck tonight
and no letting up. We have lit up Ward several times, and tonight needs to one of those nights.
A lot of fans are fed up with the owners, myself included, My attendence has tailed off for the past four years, not because of the team per say, but the continued empty promises of the ownership.
Now we find out through court papers, they have been dishonest to faithful fans ? That made me sick to my stomach. I bet, if Arthur Blank, with his creditability and commitment to Atlanta
were to buy this team, attendence would be near, if not, sold out every game… Why, Because we know he is a winner, honest and will do whatever it takes to win. Something these current owners will and can never never do. I have to laugh at several on the blog who attack others.
Sage, LAC, Stroz seems to have one point of view, most would not 100% agree with, but they are not close from wrong most cases. Then Cliff, Tom, Smoothie and others who post quality comments, but always bash the forementioned guys for no real reason, heck, they are fans too.
But calling people out as little old women, that was about as stupid as something the ASG would say. Show some respect guys, everyone has a point to make, get over it and focus on the task at hand. Lastly we have to have a win tonight, a tie, or loss does 8th place in, as Carolina ownes the series 2-0-0 over us as we are 0-0-2, plus they have two games in hand, let that be your topic.

Hokie P. Clisters

February 5th, 2011
6:52 pm

Optional headlines after tonight’s game:
Thrashers run into Hurricanes and leave as tropical depressions………………….
Thrashers take wind out of Hurricanes and leave as free birds…………
Thrashers washed out by Hurricanes and circle drain of discontent………….
Hurricanes are exposed in the “buff” by Thrashers…………..

tonyb

February 5th, 2011
7:03 pm

mrfixit, you are so right about Blank. If he buys, attendance would soar.

I tend to believe people until they are caught in a lie. Bettman said there are no relocation plans and that the league would take every step it could to help a team before relocation is considered.

People, think about that blog for just a moment. The league would offer the ASG 125 million for the team, Remember, the team has 9 years at 9 million left on the Phillips deal, Losing that 81 million, they would collect a check for 44 million for the team. The very worst NHL team goes for more than double that amount. And what about all the lost revenue from concessions. I mean, they own the lease rights to the building. And the building is very profitable. Thus, the ASG would be giving the team away.

What will happen is this summer the NHL, much like Phoenix, will help the ASG find a buyer. The ASG wants to keep the team in Atlanta because, well, they own the building. There are people willing to invest in the NHL, especially in an market the size of Atlanta.

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
7:17 pm

Great, our hockey game has been preempted b/c of a basketball game between Alabama and Tennessee. This should be illegal.

Rightshot

February 5th, 2011
7:19 pm

I am reminded why I really don’t like basketball.

Russian

February 5th, 2011
7:23 pm

Who cares about Basketball.

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
7:28 pm

Red Light, back when Atlanta hosted the All-Star game, Don Waddell confirmed something I’d long suspected, but never thought I could ever prove. He stated that, back in 2000, had he held the 1st overall pick that year … he would have selected Rick DiPietro (and not Dany Heatley) at the Draft. As much as we’ve all done our fair share of Kari Lehtonen-bashing, hasn’t Rick DiPietro been on the IR even more?!! I think, “yes.” Truthfully, imagine how angry we would have been, at THAT time, back in 2000, if Waddell had passed on Heatley!! Relax. DiPietro is under contract until he’s 40, as an Islander. So, we’re “safe.”

To the Winnipeg trolls … if our franchise were actually relocated there, I’d want a CONDITION on the relocation that the Heptacluster had to remain on as owners, for a DECADE, with Don Waddell as GM, CEO, and Team President. Enjoy watching the Heptacluster spend all their money not tied up in litigation go to the Atlanta Hawks. And when your attendance, in Year Three, in Winnipeg is 8,500 a night … that all AJC bloggers be ordered to reassemble on the Winnipeg hockey message boards to ask them “So, how do your like your NHL franchise? Was it worth it?”

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
7:31 pm

Nic Bergsfors!! 1-0, Thrashers!!! Bryan Little with a helper!

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
7:32 pm

There was a “delayed” penalty on the goal, so … does that count as a PP goal? We did have the extra man on the ice when the goal was scored.

Curly

February 5th, 2011
7:32 pm

I called DISH network about the game not being broadcast. Listen to this…. The response I got was the game is not on is because Georgia is in the Western time zone so the game will not come on until 9:00 pm. I’m serious.

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
7:35 pm

Curly, the game’s on FSSO. DISH Network doesn’t carry that channel?

Hockey Biltong

February 5th, 2011
8:02 pm

just as if the Thrash went into OT, the game would be played until termination. same for bball.you win some, you lose some.

Rawhide

February 5th, 2011
8:03 pm

There was a “delayed” penalty on the goal, so … does that count as a PP goal? We did have the extra man on the ice when the goal was scored.

Brendan – No. Technically it is still even strength, 6v6. We had 6 skaters and no goalie, the Canes had 5 skaters and the goalie.

Hockey Biltong

February 5th, 2011
8:05 pm

on the broadcast, that is….

Joe Friday

February 5th, 2011
8:42 pm

Great kill…so far. But why the heck is Modin even skating tonight? Awful penalty by him and bad call by coach to dress him.

Got to pull this one out, gonna call a game winner by Buf, we better come out strong all third period

ZAvalanche

February 5th, 2011
8:45 pm

Cornbread – agreed, that is exactly why D have square tips on their blades. Some of the more offensive D men will have a bit rounder toe and a bit of a curve, but a flatter – square blade does make it easier to dig in the corners. I prefer the Yzerman blade (doubt if it was the actual specs of his blade) as I played both ends depending on the players we had.

Rawhide

February 5th, 2011
8:50 pm

Since scoring two goals in the closing minutes of the January 17 game in Florida, the Thrashers have score one third period goal in the past six game. Andrew Ladd netted that one in Tampa Bay to pull Atlanta to within six of the Lightning. In that time, they’ve been outscored 7-1 in minutes 40 through 60.

In the last nine games, they’ve been outscored 15-3 in the third.

Tonight would be a pretty good time to turn that trend around, (DUH5)

Joe Friday

February 5th, 2011
8:55 pm

How much left on this 5 on 3? Win the draw, kill the rest off, and skate like your lives depend on it!

Hoof Arted

February 5th, 2011
9:26 pm

Note to Graig Ramsay: Whenever the Thrashers have just scored a huge game tying goal…

DO NOT PUT ZACH BOGOSIAN OUT ON THE ICE!!!!!

Good lord! Please bring up Postma and sit Bogsian’s ass in the press box until Toby’s finger is better!

Hoof Arted

February 5th, 2011
9:35 pm

I officially take back that last comment.

Great goal Zach!

Now, please play some defense.

LAC

February 5th, 2011
9:43 pm

Bad/Soft goal, NINTH place, another chock game, We are now offically Done !

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
10:00 pm

By the way, Congratulations to Carolina! They played a pretty decent game.

Ric Dudley told Jeff Schultz, during the offseason, “I think I’m pretty GOOD at what I do. I think I can do this job BETTER THAN ANYONE.” Okay. Prove it. If every game is a ‘playoff game,’ then Atlanta trails the series, 3-0, for they haven’t won since the All-Star break. In the last 20 games, straight-up, the Thrashers are 4-16, with one of those wins being the “miracle” comeback, in Sunrise, FL, vs. the Cats, another hapless organization without a playoff win in over a DECADE.

Dudley told Chris Vivlamore, “Ideally, we’d like to add two forwards and a defenseman.” Well, you do have $18 million in cap room. Since you do your job BETTER THAN ANYONE, I’m looking forward to watching you solve the problem not is now the Thrashers OUTSIDE the playoff field with teams beneath us holding games-in-hand.

Cornbread

February 5th, 2011
10:14 pm

I do believe Pavs would like to have all 4 of those goals back tonight. Some good shots but also stoppable.

LAC

February 5th, 2011
10:24 pm

I agree Brenden, I am starting to believe he DOES NOT know his job and is taking pointers from WORTHLESS, collect a paycheck only, waddell. Sad to see, but The National Hockey League needs to step and step in NOW ! Where are you GARY BETTMAN, Do something are you that BLIND !!!! As for dudley, either do something or RESIGN !

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
10:24 pm

Rawhide, it is true that the Thrashers are 4-16, including that “miracle” win vs. Florida, in Sunrise, in the past 20 games? If so, wouldn’t a hypothetical “Good GM” see a trend there, and act accordingly?

How much cap room do the Thrashers have, Rawhide? Is it $18 million? Dudley said he wanted to add two forwards and a defender, but wanted to wait-n-see if the team actually needed them. Is he still “evaluating?”

Curly

February 5th, 2011
10:29 pm

Cornbread – The third Hurricane goal (Jiri Tlusty) was deflected up and off the shaft of Bogosian’s stick. No way Pavs could have stopped that.

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
10:31 pm

Ranallo warning??

Joe Friday

February 5th, 2011
10:32 pm

simply brutal. Why did Coach sit Buf? Puts Sopel out on the point late in the 3rd on the PP?

I think Bogosian’s stick deflected Carolina’s 3rd one, at least he hit the net with the goalie pulled this time. Oduya made a couple nice backpedals out of the way oon two Carolina rushes that became goals.

Thrashy Thrashy

February 5th, 2011
10:32 pm

Rick Dudley is not a stupid man. Therefore, if he doesn’t make any significant moves soon, we’ll all know why.

On the bright side, a lack of personnel improvement via trade would give us all a good reason to b***h and moan. One can never discount the importance of that.

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
10:43 pm

Thrashy Thrashy has it right. “There’s nothing more AMERICAN than to complain about things.” That’s kinda how our whole country got started! We saw things we didn’t like, and decided to change them.

KLS1

February 5th, 2011
10:44 pm

I like Kulda…a couple hiccups but a lot of upside.

Gotta win though…we are so damn soft. We score to tie and they score seconds laters. Its exhausing to always play from behind…and it shows.

Brendan

February 5th, 2011
10:45 pm

Before we leave the topic of tonight’s game entirely, how about Kane laying down a fight challenge that the ‘Canes played wimped on?? I think it was in the 2nd period.

Rick Dudley

February 5th, 2011
11:06 pm

Don’t panic, by the time we are in 11th place I will trade for a soft winger who once scored 15 goals three seasons ago and call him a Top 6 F

Rawhide

February 5th, 2011
11:28 pm

That thump you heard from Raleigh, NC was the sound of the Thrashers falling out of their playoff birth.

Sage of Bluesland

February 5th, 2011
11:34 pm

Rawhide: berth…Berth…BERTH….

(Sorry about that–it’s one of those grammar things)

ZAvalanche

February 6th, 2011
12:49 pm

OK, OK, I know this is a Thrashers board and you all know I love Thrashy and, obviously, know who my number 1 team is. I have news to deliver; Peter Forsberg has officially joined the Avs. He won’t play tomorrow’s game, for all of you that have Center Ice, but the following game he is slated to be on a line with Duchene and Hejduk. To hell with the Super Bowl, I am going to watch Foppa highlights on Youtube all day.

Anyhow, as for Thrashy (who is performing but not producing), they aren’t out till the math says they are. Injuries have hurt the team, but that happens to every team. Time to stop making excuses and go out, put your head down, metaphorically, and buck up. Acquire a top “stay at home” D and a real power forward. I think that would solve many problems they have. I don’t know the name of any out there who are available but I am sure RL or Smoothie or Corn could provide some names.

On another note: Packers 27 Steelers 21