Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Hockey Thursday Night on ESPN News?

After my blustery, pro-fighting post yesterday, I did a little research on the fighting debates, and found an interesting tidbit that I'd missed in a John Buccigross column from a couple of weeks back- it has nothing to do with fighting, but for American hockey fans looking for some coverage, it's worth checking out:

NHL hockey is primarily what I watch at home and what I watch at work while preparing for "SportsCenter" or ESPNEWS on Thursday Nights from 10 p.m. to 12 a.m. ET when we talk lots of hockey.


Lots of hockey?

Anybody seen this?

I'm skeptical, but I'll tell ya, for people who have written off watching ESPN entirely, (read, me) Buccigross keeps the tiny light burning. I'll give him a chance this Thursday. If it pans out, it could be a good thing. Still, even if it turns out to be a bust, reading that collumn was worth it if only for the anecdote of hanging out with Tony Twist at a bar, and seeing him do a shot through his nose.

That's a tough guy right there.

For reminder of what kind of damage Tony Twist was capable of, check this out:

Whoop, my bad. Here he is-Tony Twist.


Alright, no foolin now- Tony doesn't win this one, per se, but it's worthwhile for that great old Penguins announcer and the Twister's effort. He may not win the fight but he pops right back up, and then tries to blast through two officials, dragging one of them across the ice by his leg.

It's funny, I'm not normally this bloodthirsty.

Let's bring it down a notch, shall we?

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Christ, Jesus.

I just read the box score of the Boston/Buffalo game, and at this point, I'm fairly convinced that if you put on a blindfold and whack the Boston Bruins with a stick, candy will come out.

They have given up 13 goals in two games and have exactly one fighting major.


I mean, good for you, Wayne Primeau- but as for the rest of you, I'm ashamed.

I have half a mind to pay the 80 bucks just to boo you in person.

There was an article in the Globe after yesterday's debacle against the Rangers that mentioned the Bruins were looking at videotape to correct the situation.

Well guess what, douchebags, it's not videotape you should be watching.

It's YouTube.

Watch and learn guys, and pay particular attention at the 1:31 remaining mark for the gloves flying off so fast that it looks like they're making popcorn out there.

The only silver lining about all this is that I didn't go and watch the game tonight with Jen, who is in training to become an American Hockey Fan, and has chosen the Sabres as her team. In a moment of weakness I almost certainly would have brought up Brett Hull's fate, uh- oh, I'm sorry, did I say fate? I meant "skate," which is out of line. Of course, maybe that wouldn't have been so bad. I'm not sure she knows about that yet.

Well, click that link, Jen, if you're gonna be a Sabres fan, these are things you'll need to learn.

The only silver lining to all this is that these teams meet again on Thursday night, this time on Boston ice. The great Dan Wetzel article that I linked to yesterday mentions that Bettman has arranged more home-and-home series this season, but adds the great point that with fighting and aggression systematically officiated out of the game, a home-and-home series is like drinking a non-alcoholic beer.

But fighting's not completely gone.

Add the fact that the Bruins have been embarrassed twice in a row now, once on home ice, and now again on the road. On Thursday night, they get to meet the team who handed them their most recent humiliation, this time in front of their own fans. Do they want to extend that streak of humiliation to three? Do they want to show what is arguably the best team in the East that they are willing to lie down twice in a row, this time in their own rink? Do they want to show the world that the Boston Bruins are most definitely not a playoff team?

Or do they want to throw a motherfucking punch?

They got a win against the Sabres not long ago, and they way they did it was by slowing them down. They hit them, and hit them, and hit them again. Add some good hustle, quality shots, and good goaltending and the Bruins can beat that team. I don't know if the Bruins (or for that matter, anybody) can beat them four times in April, but here's their shot at legitimacy.

I certainly am the furthest thing from a Bettman apologist, and I'm no fan of the altered schedule, but I gotta say this.

That schedule has set up a contest this Thursday that IS the Boston Bruins season.

They have been humiliated twice, they are on their home ice, and they are facing not only a leading contender to win the Stanley Cup this year, but the architects of their most recent disgrace.

You wanna prove you're a playoff team?

Beat a contender.

The Buffalo Sabres have one of the best road records in the league.

The Bruins are reeling.

You wanna stop the bleeding with an exclamation point, or get blown out again by a real hockey team and limp your way through the second half?

Put up or shut up.

Fuck, I wish I had the hockey package.

Monday, January 29, 2007

If I could write anything better than this I'd do it.

Kudos to Dan Wetzel, and this terrific column about Gary Bettman's 14th anniversary as NHL commissioner and the disasters he wrought.

The Birth of an American Hockey Fan- Chapter one.

Check out the next post for the debut of Jen Adams, as she begins her quest, from knowing nothing about the sport, to become an American Hockey Fan.

This is what she wrote about the All Star Game, and I think we have a chance with this girl- she, like any decent hockey fan, thought it was boring.

Read on!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Birth of an American Hockey Fan Week One: The All Star Game

I decided to partake of my first game from the confines of a sports bar, hoping the din of perpetually disappointed Knicks fans would drown out the constant string of Eastern European names that passes for hockey commentating. Possible interesting future experiment to try on drunken Canadiens fans: turn down the volume, read the Minsk phone book, and see how long until/if they notice.

For a group of guys named to be the best in the league, and for the wattage of the spotlights they were using, no one really looked all that psyched to be in Dallas. I’m sure Rory Fitzpatrick didn’t begrudge the opportunity to kick back and watch the game without being overwhelmed by the smell of barbecue. It’s not the sort of thing one can usually determine with the sound off, but the level of enthusiasm in the Center looked to be less “deafening roar,” and more “Peanuts, get your peanuts!”

I’d been warned that I should in no way judge all professional hockey based on the All-Star game, which was just as well, as right from the start, I found the night lacking in bloodthirstiness. Not knowing or really giving a shit about any of the players yet, I tried to acquire the basics of the game with the help of my resident expert, the Earl of Rochester. Still, without any sort of penalties, strategy, or any actual desire on the part of either team to win, there wasn’t a lot to work with. By the time the first period break came around, if there was any doubt into my mind that hockey was the red-headed stepchild of the sports world, the hiring of The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus (was the scraping of nails against a blackboard already taken as a band name?) as the headliners pretty much sewed it all up.

This isn’t to say the night was completely devoid of momentary delights; I believe I actually giggled like a schoolchild when the first mini digital hockey player was superimposed on the screen during play, even though the Earl immediately informed me that I would grow plenty distasteful of the “ghetto VS graphics used by Popup Video ten years ago.” I also recognized both the name and team of Martin Brodeur, whom Ben had described to me, wide-eyed, using the term “second coming” in entirely serious tones. After a couple of periods I decided to make a go of it at my own apartment, in part due to the bar’s decision to change the channel to what appeared to be an amateur cricket match, giving me a small glimpse into the kind of adversity I’m facing in the next few months if I don’t suck it up and get Time Warner’s Center Ice package.

Back at home, after a mere nine minutes of play time with sound, the name Shanahan was like a gentle lullaby to my Anglo ears. Not much more excitement was to be found, and when Dion Phaneuf—geseundheit—scored a goal the same way that one wins a stuffed Spongebob at the county fair quarter toss, I think we were all pretty well set to call it a night. All in all, some foundation was laid, but until I see blood on the ice, I’m not feeling quite born as a hockey fan yet. So for this week:

Birthing Status: Mild labor pains.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Tips of the hat:

1) To the Forechecker, who once again, played my request.
I'm more than a little proud, by the way, that my gut instinct ended up being justified by two spreadsheets. Seriously, if you serious hockey fans aren't checking out the Forechecker, you're missing some GREAT hockey number-crunching. In fact, I'm such a big fan- one day I vow to learn his real name.

2) To the recap program FSN's Final Score.
It's like Sportscenter, except- oh, I don't know- they show you the fucking clips! It's a wonderful, much needed, sports highlight show, with no catchphrases, no egos, and oh yeah- hockey highlights! Add a sweet "Pardon the Interuption" type ticker on the side that lets you know what game highlights are coming up, and you have a happy hockey fan.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

All Star Thoughts:

Well, despite my misgivings and bitching about the All Star game, I still watched it.

Or at least the intros, first period, part of the second and the final minutes.

Here's some thoughts:

The intros:

-Former Devil, Oiler, Bruin, and Dallas Star Bill Guerin gets a real nice ovation from the Dallas crowd. He didn't do so well in Dallas, or at least not as well as he did on a line with Joe Thornton in Boston, but the crowd really gave it up for him. I suspect this is becuase he was always the kind of player who'd skate hard, provide offense, throw a hit or two, drop the gloves if the time was right and provide leadership. It was a class act by the Dallas fans and the grin on Guerin's face showed he wasn't expecting it. I know Billy G won a cup with the Devils way back when, but I hope he can get out of St. Louis and get back into the playoffs one more time.

-During the National Anthem, the Dallas fans shout "STARS" really loud when the lyric "Stars" or "Star" is sung during the "Star Spangled Banner." I love this. Organic, fan based chants are one of the things that make this league great. The fact that they treated Billy Guerin the way they did, and really got into the singing of the national anthem that way is a pretty strong argument to the folks who say hockey will never work in non-conventional hockey cities.

-Wow, Ed Jovonoski is still in the league? I had no idea.

-I'll tell you, no offense to the guy, but it's really nice to hold an All Star game and not see Eric Lindros. After all the hype, after all the noise, that guy had exactly two good years, and was never dominant. Come to think of it, it was great to have an All Star game that doesn't end up with half the guys pulling on Rangers jerseys the next fall, and skating about as hard as they did at the All Star game.

-Ovechkin is introduced and we cut to the crowd. Two people are clapping, the rest look bored.

-Joe Thornton gives up #19 in deference to Joe Sakic. I'd like to say this is a class move by Joe, but I wonder if it was regulation, that the older player gets the number. Either way, the right decision was made. We all should be appreciating Joe Sakic these days. Also, I hear the announcers say that Joe doesn't take many warmup shots, but does take pictures with Bill Guerin and Brian Rolston. Jesus, that was a good Bruins team.

The game:

-Where the hell is Sidney Crosby? Seriously- what gives?

-A Deflection goal ties the score. Wow- so the NHL cooks the books to prevent Rory Fitzpatrick from taking a few shifts, but they're cool with their showcase of the elite featuring a puck bouncing in off fucking Yanic Perrault?

-Luongo gets his mask knocked off. This reminds me of the last fifteen minutes of the movie Predator "You are one ugly motherfucker."

-Wow- When is the last time you've watched 10 minutes of NHL hockey without a penalty? It takes you 15 games to see that these days.

-Looks like the officials are also being lax on offsides calls. If they aren't going to call it, why don't we just let a fan be the ref? Or fuck it, get Paul Newman. We know he can skate, and if you miked him up, it'd be awesome. Plus, you know Brendon Shanahan would skate up to him and tell him that he was "too fuckin' old to play this game." It'd be great.

-Great job by Emerick bringing up the Al Mcinnis quote on why he brought three sticks instead of five to the hardest shot contest back in the day: "You only bring three becuase the sticks might get jealous."

Where's Crosby? wow.

St Louis just scored on a pass from Lecavlier. So fast I couldn't see it. Jeez, you'd think that guys who've played together before are more fun to watch.

Justin Williams to Staal and another goal. What did I just say?

Again, they ignored an obviously offside play.

Brian Rolston just scored and it looked like he split the puck in half- it turned out he just broke Brodeur's microphone. That'd be great if the last thing they heard on the mike was Brodeur saying "Awww Fu-"

Well, I've lost interest. I kept an eye on the game throughout, but with apologies to Blues and Flyers fans, it ain't much fun to watch two hockey teams that aren't trying very hard. I was talking to my brother about this, and we came up with a neat idea.

Why not have the best Powerplay in the league face off against the best PK? Who would that be, I wonder? San Jose vs. Montreal, maybe? Perhaps the Forechecker will come to my aid again.

Anyway, there'll be some real hockey on Saturday.

See you then.

Jen Adams: in her own words.

Hi folks, Ritch here, giving the aforementioned Jen Adams
an opportunity to tell you what she's all about as we, (along with 14 other people in America) are busy taking in the NHL All Star Game.

Jen was chosen for this gig based on several important factors, mainly:

-Her interest in the game of hockey

-Her lack of experience with the game of hockey

-Her proven ability to write funny

-Her very common first and last name, which we figure will drive traffic to the site from the thousands of lonely drunks around the world who once had a crush on a girl named Jen Adams and decided to "just Google her name and see if I could find her." Oh, and if that's you, well- this is probaby a different Jen Adams. But just to honor that lost, unrequited love you had for that Jen Adams, howabout you read what this one has to say about the game of hockey?

I mean screw it, you obviously aren't that busy.

Give her a hearty welcome, will ya?

Here she is:

Hey all, I'm Jen-

Midtwenties, literate, and on the cusp of hockey fandom.

As if it's not hard enough to become a hockey fan within US borders, I have the added challenge of a full set of lady bits. Despite having never played the game and only even seen one professional hockey game in my life , I do hail from extremely northern New York (near the Canadian border), which imbues me with an innate knowledge of cold weather sport, survival tactics, and an abiding love for crappy beers.

I think I've got the basics of the game down- get the little black disc in the net more often than the other guys, throw a punch, repeat- but over the course of the rest of the season, I have several goals:

-learn enough to be able to use the term "five hole" without snickering

-convincingly utter the phrase "Bobby Orr is the greatest hockey playah of all TIME" at the appropriate juncture/bar.

After much forethought and some shameless anti-Rangers grovelling on Ben's part, I've chosen the Buffalo Sabres as my team. After a lifetime spent getting my heart broken by the Bills, I grew more than familiar with the tough love batterings that upstate sports offer and the accompanying "fell-into-a-doorknob" rationalizations that fans must ready themselves with, so imagine my surprise when Ritch informed me that the Sabres were not only not a shitty team, but possibly even a good one.

Though I have yet to see any proof of this non-suckitude, I look forward to chronicling the highs, lows, and confusions that come with the birthing of an American Hockey Fan.

See you Monday,


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Besides the fact that it's the only hockey on this week

Why are we watching the All Star Game?

  • It's our first chance to shit on the new uniforms

  • We'll get to see the skills competition, which only happens once a year (or when the score is tied at the end of overtime)

  • It's the only hockey on this week (crap, sorry!)

  • Debuting our new drinking game, where every time Gary Bettman insincerly praises the fans, we drink

  • The sublime assistant coaching of Barry Trotz

  • It's the only hockey on this week (OK, OK- Jesus!)

  • Where else are you going to see Thornton and Cheechoo on the same line?

  • To be able to witness, if only for one day, a hockey game that discourages hitting, fighting, incidental contact, hooking, holding, and gives Ovechkin and Crosby room to stand in front of the net unmolested

  • It's the only hockey on this week

What, do you have a better reason?

We're all ears.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Ladies and Gentlemen: The birth of an American Hockey Fan.

Ritch Duncan here, founder of American Hockey Fan, announcing the first of several new steps intended to expand and enhance the experience of reading this blog.

I am honored to introduce you to Jen Adams.

I'll give her the opportunity to speak for herself in a moment, but for now, it's enough to say that she is a tremendously talented and funny writer currently working in New York City.

Despite little to no prior knowledge of the game of hockey, she has been interested enough to adapt the Buffalo Sabres as her home team, follow them through the rest of the season and playoffs, and do her best to chronicle her emergence as an American Hockey Fan.

As evidence of her willingness to try new things- well, duck and cover motherfuckers, this chick has, with an open mind, eaten Pupperoni.

Under the tutilage of myself, AHF co-contributor Ben Zelevansky, and other friends of American Hockey Fan, she will be pointed towards great games, rituals, past video clips, movies, and events that we feel are integral parts of enjoying the game of hockey.

She will be posting new original material here every Monday through the cup finals, and God knows what she'll write.

People say that hockey is hard to follow, and new viewers need new uniforms, glowing pucks, a league free of fighting and a host of new rules and regulations that open the game up to a new audience.

We'll see if that's the case.

I mean sure, it's an angle, but you gotta admit, it's at least as entertaining as the All Star Game, right?

Stay tuned.

A couple of great goals for a Monday.

First off, from my pal Jack, here's a goal that Maxim Afinogenov pulled off a few years back that is kind of jaw dropping.

Up next, the Brian Rolston slap shot.

God, I love this goal.

Oh, and stay tuned over the next week.

AHF is going to be going through some changes....

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

24 degrees in New York tonight-

-and I'm off to play hockey on an outdoor rink.

If anyone has anything to say to my testicles, they'll be emerging again around March.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

The Nickname Conundrum

As fans of hockey on any level know, there is nothing so important to team chemistry as the nickname. I always imagine a sacred ritual in the dressing room like the scene from Animal House, where Belushi is randomly assigning noms de frat to the new pledges:

He's clearly wasted, so the nicknames don't make much sense. But in hockey, there is a system so simple that even a drunken former star of Saturday Night Live could master it. Consult the official AHF template provided below as a guide, and make hockey nicknames for you and all your friends:

Martin St. Louis = Marty
Rod Brind'Amour = Roddy
Patrick Marleau = Patty

Or, you can switch it up and use last names:

Brendan Shanahan = Shanny
Colin White = Whitey
Daniel Alfredsson = Alfie

The only known exception is Scott. No matter what your last name is, you're Scotty. End of discussion.

Anyway, this system is damn near foolproof, and has stood the test of time since the days of Gordon Howe (you probably know him as "Gordie"). There's just one problem...the Kings' new goalie.

Not a lot of great options there.

Martin Luther King Day.

Well, I don't know about the rest of you, but I spent my Martin Luther King day watching the Buffalo/Boston game this afternoon, judging the Buffalo Sabres not by the color of their jerseys, but the content of their character. Thanks to for the pic. The Sabres played a good game, but the Bruins edged them in the shootout, only after holding them at bay by hitting them CONSTANTLY.

I think that's the only way to beat the Sabres, just keep on forechecking and hitting them before they can get any speed going. Oh, and just to be safe, it can't hurt to score seven goals.

The fact that I still haven't been asked to become an NHL coach is amazing to me.

Oh, and if you haven't seen Ryan Miller's save on the 3 on 1 play yet- well, wait, because you're going to.

If you even think about watching the All Star Game, that save is going to be the headliner of his highlight reel.

Just to put it in perspective, it's better than this one:

Of course, the clip of the save he made this afternoon didn't include someone screaming "Holy Macinaw," which evens the scales a bit.

But even more miraculous than Miller's save?

The fact that the Bruins didn't blow it in the 3rd period.

Oh, and as a side note, I caught some of the Sharks dominating the Colorado Avs in the late game. With Stevie Y gone, all hockey fans should be doing their best to appreciate Joe Sakic, who won't be around forever, but ripped off a great goal with that classic wrist shot of his like it was 1993.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Kiefer Sutherland explains hockey

Well, in honor of the debut of 24 tonight, I give you:

"Kiefer Sutherland explains hockey"

Now, if someone could just explain 24 to me...

(Yes, that's a shamless plug)

Friday, January 12, 2007

Things could always be worse

Kids, always remember that no matter how bad things seem, there's always someone worse off than you. Take Patrick Stefan, for example.

After all, what could be more humiliating than flubbing your backhand attempt on an empty net, then watching in horror as the other team skates the puck up ice and ties the game with 2 seconds left to go:

Pretty bad, right? Hard to be more embarrassed than that, isn't it? I mean, there's no way to botch a play any worse, is there?

Well, as it turns out, yes there is:

The good news is, the kid's got a tryout with the Stars...they're looking for someone who can score on an empty net.

Another reason hockey is better than other sports:

The baseball hall of fame.

I mean, seriously- can we take it easy?


Ooooo- Mark McGuire didn't make it in?!

Let's wring our hands and have a debate!

Fuck you guys.

I'll make it simple for you- wanna be in the hall of fame?

Be famous.

That's it.

Be a drunk , be a gambler , be a cheater , be a racist, just be famous.

We'll write the flaws on your plaque.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

All Star Balloting is in-

And as much as I normally hate the All-Star game, I gotta say, the NHL did one thing right on their website, allowing you to click individual players and see examples of their recent goals and highlights.

Sidney Crosby's page is particularly great, as it really shows off his extraordinary ability to just not quit on a puck, and Alexander Ovechkin's is similarly amazing, especially in the way you really get to see, over and over again, how fluid and lightning quick his shot is.

But perhaps most extraordinary, is Daniel Briere's page, which is different from Crosby's and Ovechkin's in that his highlight reels, over and over again, feature at least 3 or four teammates touching the puck, moving it around and creating chances.

While Crosby and Ovechkin are world-class players, the Buffalo Sabres are a world-class team. That's not to say that Briere is going to do badly at the All Star game- I could skate on a line with Ovechkin and Crosby and finish with 4 points. But I do think it's interesting that the NHL still feels the need to promote itself on the single player NBA superstar model and not by promoting the electrifying lines, and most effective special teams units.

Also, it's sad that Rory Fitzpatrick didn't make it in. For those conspiracy theorists out there, who think that the NHL put in the fix, you think the fact that it might be difficult to put together a highlight page for Rory along the lines of Crosby's and Ovechkin's above?

I think they could have done it.

In fact, it's probably a matter of time before one of those nutty Vancouver hockey bloggers puts one together. Lemme know if you see one, I'll link it up.

Anyway, I'm off to play some real hockey tonight.

It's a chilly one tonight in Central Park- time to find the longjohns.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Wacey Rabbit is on the move

Jesus, I love this.

Here we go:

Former Boston Bruins prospect and perennial American Hockey Fan favorite Wacey Rabbit has been traded to the Vancouver Giants.

So heads up Vancouver- get ready for a giant wabbit.

Pictured here with his agent J.P. Barry, Wabbit appears ready to take Vancouver by storm.

I know I've shown this before, and it may be played out, but I laugh every time I watch this.

Godspeed, Wacey Rabbit.


Monday, January 08, 2007

Once again, I find myself upset with the St. Louis Blues.

One of the totally sweet "benefits" that is included with their partial season ticket plans:

~ Right to purchase Stanley Cup Playoff tickets packages before they go on sale to the public

Wow- Really!?

So when do you think that will that be?


Join the Revolution!

(Last updated October 6th, 2006)

In the Crease

Hey- any of you guys remember when I told you that the producers of the movie In the Crease were kind enough to send me a DVD screener copy?

UPDATE: They are promoting and distributing the movie themselves, so if you want to see it, buy it here.

Anyway, I watched it last week, and all I can say is this: if you love the game of hockey, you will love this documentary.

OK- I can say a little more.

I posted the trailer back on December 28th- a post that is also worth reading for the motivation it has obviously given to the Phoenix Coyotes since that date, but I digress.

The film follows a California Bantam AAA hockey team as it pushes towards the national championships, and while I won't give away what happens, I will tell you that this film is not about winning or losing. What makes this film matter is the fact that the producers of this film truly "get" hockey.

I'll put it this way- have you seen the movie "The Mighty Ducks?"

Yeah, that one. With Emilio Estevez.

That movie's flaw is, it's just a sports movie with kids in it. It could be about a baseball team, a basketball team, a soccer team or whatever, and the plot wouldn't really change. The Mighty Ducks is a kids movie that happens to be about hockey.

In the Crease is a hockey movie that happens to be about kids.

And it's hockey that permeates all the characters in the film, from the NHL stars that provide cameos, to the players obsessed with nationals, to the terrific coach, to the sets of parents who span the spectrum from cool to crazy- just like in real hockey. If there was one thing missing from the movie, it was portrayals of the goalies, who go through a completely different experience. It would have been nice to have seen a bit of how goaltenders this young shoulder some of the stress of the position. For whatever reason, that wasn't included, which was a shame.

But ultimately the greatness of this movie was its ability to take you back to the memories of youth hockey:

- the weird feeling of walking in your socks across the padded floor after taking off your skates

- that totally unique, semi-sweet, semi-funky smell of every hockey rink I've ever been in, and how having that smell around somehow makes hot chocolate taste better

- the twin booms of a stick slapping the puck and the puck hitting the boards as both sounds echo over each other and throughout the building

And while it might seem ridiculous that a movie could make you remember a smell, this movie does it. It takes you there, and if you've been there before, it takes you back.

So pick it up, buy it, rent it, and hope your asses off that these are the guys who get to make the ice hockey version of Friday Night Lights.

Oh, and if they are- I know a certain hockey blogger who would be interested in showing them a spec script.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

QUICK! Watching TV after midnight?

Catch Comedian Eddie Pepitone on Jimmy Kimmel Live RIGHT NOW!

He's a tremendously funny man, a lifelong Ranger fan, and here's his website

I'll make it short- tune in to ABC if you're online, before 1:30 AM eastern time!

Friday, January 05, 2007


OK- if you're like me, and maybe you watch other sports but you're a hockey fan above all else, I have some seriously big news for you.

Are you ready for this?

Check it out.

Herm Edwards and Tony Dungy are not, repeat NOT the same guy.


Check it out!

(Not a scene from Double Impact.)

I mean, Holy shit!

Whether they in fact, kissed after this photo was taken is unknown, but what is known is, they are not, as I had previously assumed, the same guy, who despite getting fired a lot, always seemed to have a job coaching someplace or another.

Oh, but you know who are the same guy?

These two.

I should write for Letterman.

And Now-Tonight's Top Ten List, from the home office at the TD Banknorth Garden in Boston Massachusetts:

Top Ten Reasons The Boston Bruins Sucked Ass Last Night

Number 10:

Johnny Pohl on the power play, with his 6th of the year - assists from Boyd Devereaux and Pavel Kubina

Number 9:

Bates Battaglia with his 5th of the year, with assists from Ian White and Johnny Pohl

Number 8:

Alexander Steen with his 5th of the year, with assists from Ian White, and Andrew Raycroft, (for the love of God)

Number 7:

Bates Battaglia with his second of the evening, with assists from Johnny Pohl and Boyd Devereaux

Number 6:

Alexander Steen with his second of the evening with assists from Jeff O'Neill and Mats Sundin

Number 5:

Kris Newbury with his 2nd of the year with assists from Alexander Steen and Matthew Stajan

Number 4:

Matthew Stajan with his 7th of the year with assists from Tomas Kaberle and Boyd Devereaux

Number 3:

Alexander Steen completing the hat trick with an assist from Hal Gill

Number 2:

Matthew Stajan with his 2nd of the night, this one shorthanded, with assists from Alexander Steen and Tomas Kaberle

And Number 1 :

It's Chad Kilger with his 7th of the year with assists from Kris Newbury and Matthew Stajan!

Thank you- thank you very much!
And standing right over there, is your musical director, Mr. Rene Rancourt!

(And, scene.)

Now can someone kill me?


Thursday, January 04, 2007

Funnier All Star campaigns than "Vote for Rory"

Well, even though I never officially weighed in on the whole Vote for Rory phenomenon, I will say that I'm disappointed that he probably won't be starting at the All Star Game.

I was proud as hell of the effort, and voted for him twice.

Many people have criticized it, Don Cherry among them, who said "the league is not a joke, and this is a joke." To that, I respectfully disagree, especially seeing as Grapes happens to be a personal hero of mine.

Look- while Vote for Rory might be funny, it's not JUST a joke. It's a legitimate effort to insert some new blood into the NHL All Star game, and reward a player who has worked his ass off to stay in this league. If some people want to laugh, fine. But has baseball, basketball or football ever suggested anything this cool? Still, as a comedy writer, I feel like if I am going on record that the Vote for Rory campaign is not a joke, it's my responsibility to put out some write in campaigns that clearly are. Therefore, I'm proud to present the following:

Write in Campaigns that are Funnier than "Vote for Rory."

1) Vote for Miroslav Satan, Wade Redden (#6) as a winger, and pull Mario Lemieux (#66) out of retirement for an all-star starting line up of jersey numbers reading: "Satan 666." That's funny.

2) Vote Cory Stillman, along with Rick Nash and Sidney Crosby for the "Crosby, Stillman and Nash" line. Even funnier? Substitute Tyson Nash.

3) Sending Islanders owner Charles Wang thousands of letters demanding not only that Rick DiPetro receive a 15 year contract extension but that his backup, Garth Snow, be given the GM job. That would be HILARIOUS. Oh, wait. Forget it.

4) Writing in Gilbert Brule and Steve Sullivan to form the Gilbert and Sullivan line, with the delicate, temperamental flower Jaromir Jagr playing alongside them as "My little buttercup."

You see?

Those are jokes.

Rory isn't.

And on a terribly serious note, does the NHL have any business ignoring the wishes of it's fans? Do I need to show the picture again?

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Stevie Y

Well, what a night.

Steve Yzerman, truly one of the NHL's greatest players, had his number retired last night at the Joe. I'm a little torn by Versus's (Versuses?) decision to show the ceremony then cut away to the Blackhawks/Blues game, but I suppose I'm glad that there was a media group out there who realized that to American hockey fans all over the country, Stevie Y was a big deal. Check out what I wrote about him on the eve of his last game in the NHL.

He was quiet, unassuming, reserved, and humble everywhere but on the ice, where he was quiet, unassuming, reserved and lethal.

For the best coverage of the night, go see Christy's photos (she took the one I have there) over at Behind The Jersey. Honorable mention goes to Abel to Yzerman, who I didn't even know was back (I've been a little AWOL for the past month) , who writes with tremendous eloquence about not only Yzerman, but the pain that all hockey fans feel when something HUGE happens in the world of hockey and the sports media ignores it. Oh, and he hipped me to Christy's great coverage too. She was all over this night, and she even got Don Cherry's autograph, which I must admit I'm a little pissed off about.

I mean, you don't get to have lower bowl seats to Steve Yzerman's retirement game AND get Don Cherry's autograph on the same day. It's just too much joy. It's like hearing that you'll get a chance to drink from the Stanley Cup, and when you get there, the liquid they're pouring into it is Johnny Walker Blue. I mean, for fuck's sake Christy, even if we keep it within the realm of the NHL, let's do a little comparison:

Christy: Hanging out at Stevie Y night and getting Don Cherry's autograph

Phil Kessel: At home with ball cancer.

See what I'm saying here?

Spread it around, doll.