Friday, January 04, 2008

You know, after the Ice Bowl-

-It's sort of weird that the season is still going on.

I watched the Ice Bowl on my DVR yesterday, you know, so I could actually SEE the game, and yeah it was scrappy, but I still thought it was great.

I mean, there is a lot of bitching about how the "game wasn't great" and the "conditions made it tough to stickhandle," but um- wasn't that the point? You want to hold a game outside to see how the world's greatest hockey players are going to deal with it. It's like watching that Patriots snow-game from a few years back and bitching that snow made the passing game tougher.

Here are some thoughts I had after watching the telecast:

-Sidney Crosby bouncing the puck on his stick a couple times while rushing up ice isn't "wizardry."

I mean, Christ. I get it that he's the guy you want to market, but ANYBODY in the NHL can do that, and to top it all off, it didn't really work. He slapped the puck a few times in an attempt to settle it down, and got checked off the puck.

- Sidney Crosby is not Bobby Orr. Not by a long shot.

Sidney Crosby is a gifted player, and the point that his tenacity and refusal to give up on a play even when putting his own body at risk is something that Orr did as well, (and was something that eventually led to a series of career-shortening injuries, which I worry Crosby may be subjecting himself to as well.) But what Bobby Orr could do, and did on a regular basis was that incredibly rare thing that Michael Jordan, or Dominick Hasek in his prime, or even maybe Tom Brady and Joe Montana could so, and that is to completely take over a game, and win it almost singlehandedly when the chips were down. Sid is a superstar, and almost every game will get his points, and probably do a trick. Like a flippy move, or a spin-o-rama, or a jump over the goalie and whack it in on a backhand. These are all cool tricks, but he ain't Bobby Orr.

-Can you imagine how completely awful a stickhandler Zdeno Chara would be if he played in that game?

I love Chara, but when he's handling the puck it's always a crap shoot. It's not really his fault, when the puck is on his stick, it's so far away from his head that he'd need to be a professional plate-spinner to be able to get a handle on it, but damn. He's a crappy stickhandler, is what I'm saying.

-I maintain that Ty Conklin is still a shitty goalie.

Some people are saying he's no longer a joke, and yes, he made some seemingly big saves on New Year's day, but while much was made of the snow buildup causing the puck to move more slowly on offense, the puck also moved much slower after a goalie gave up a rebound. Pucks that would have slid easily into the slot moved a lot slower, and allowed Conklin to cover up quicker. The fact that he was named a top three star was a joke.

-Brian Campbell should have been a top three star.

He opened the scoring, showed a physical presence, and adapted to the elements perhaps better than any player on the ice.

-On television or in person, the Ice Bowl was a great day for hockey.

You know, unless the Penguins make the playoffs by one point. Ben was right.


twoeightnine said...

Did you have the NBC feed? Supposedly we made an appearance a minute or two before they changed sides in the 3rd. I think it was the 10:39 mark or something like that.

WD to Evers to Chance said...

Damn jealous that you guys got to go to the game, but I'm happy that you had a western new yorker to show you around. I was up there the weekend before for the last Bills home game of the season -- and you totally lucked out on the weather. But regardless, tailgating outside the Ralph is always a great experience, and it sounds like you got to taste some quality Buffalo-style food.

From home, all the play stoppages were a bit of a drag, especially in the fourth, but what the hell -- at least people were watching hockey on a Saturday afternoon!

Now, if only the freakin' Sabres can figure out how to slam Sid the Kid's face into the boards next time, maybe we can get some decent hockey going.