Saturday, November 9, 2013

LA Kings v. Vancouver Canucks - New Coach, Same Gingers

Hermano here.

Game 16 and I think it's time for a (semi) live blog.  Check back here after each period for my thoughts about the game.  As for my pre-game thoughts?  Jim Fox's tie is STELLAR.  I'd have more pre-game thoughts, but the wife is pestering me for fantasy football advice in setting her lineup.  THIS SHIT DOESN'T COME FOR FREE.

See you all after the first period.


First period:

Julie Stewart-Binks with SeanOD.  Is Julie a poor-woman’s Brooklyn Decker?  (That’s supposed to be a compliment.) 

It’s weird – this afternoon, I was looking at my collection of signed pucks and, naturally, focused solely on the puck signed by Sean Avery.  And all I could think about was how big his smile must have been when he heard the news that Torts got fired from the Rangers.  I’d show you his tweet but that would involve extra work that my body is not ready for at this moment.

The only way I could hate the new LA Kings pump-up song is if you told me it was composed by The Bouncing Souls.

Doughty with a golden opportunity, and somehow it stays out. Sweet no-replay, Fox Sports West.

Jim Fox commenting about how dynamic the defensive pairing of Muzzin and Doughty are – they’re definitely dynamic at giving me heart attacks when they both jump in below the hash marks and/or shooting the puck into a foward's legs.

Luongo sporting the new mask which, I believe, mimics a fucking beanie.  A blue fucking beanie.  Whatever, it’s for charity.  

First break in the action – dare I say, Darryl Sutter looks… dapper?!

Yikes, first monster save by Quick.  I’d prefer not to see too many of those tonight, since that generally means our defense is atrocious.

Look at Luongo maintaining his perfect butterfly stance while the Canucks break it out behind his net. #Dedication

Canucks are putting tons of bodies in the crease.  Smart, that’s how you throw goalies off their game.  It also means our defense is not making the Canucks pay the price for parking in the crease.  This is going to hurt us if this continues.   

Barf, this is sloppy.  Quick robs Kesler with a Timmy Thomas-esque save to keep this at zeros.  Since when did our defense look like the Oilers’?

Jim Fox with a “Sutterella” gaff – and suddenly creates the most perfect name for a rock band.  Or 80’s tribute band. 

Not gonna lie, Luongo’s mask is “so Monet” – you know, good from afar but far from good. 

Someone plows into Quick but Williams with a break and sends it to Kopitar for the easy go….oh man, HOW did Kopitar miss that open net… It literally does not get easier than that.  I love Bob Miller calling himself out for prematurely saying he scored.  

Wow, Linden Vey displays shocking skill to set up the most beautiful assist I’ve seen in a very long time.  And a sick finish by Nolan  - that wasn’t a gimmie.  But seriously, did Vey just promote himself to the first line?  “Move down the line, MiniMe.” 

You know, I’ve been considering it for almost two years, but I’m about one more Nolan goal/assist/fight away from buying his jersey.  Thoughts?

I simply don’t understand why Martinez was scratched the first 1,308,492 games of this season.  Does he do a killer Darryl Sutter impersonation?  Did Sutter find out?

Does Vey play roller hockey during the offseason?  He’s sporting some sick dangles.  Maybe he just crushes film of Datsyuk?  Speaking of grinding film, does anyone know who’s the “Gruden Grinder” of the NHL?  Bylsma?

In video game lingo, the second half of this game has just been PURE OWNAGE.  Sorry, PURE PWNAGE.  Richards is the king of stop/start.  Remember that “distinct kicking motion” goal that fucked us at the beginning of the season?  Well, here’s the Toronto War Room litmus test – because this is absolutely a good game.  But seriously, Toffoli, you gotta bury that gift.

Is it too soon to pick up Vey on my fantasy team?

The Kings got bailed out by Quick in the first half of the period and then suddenly realized they're Cup contenders by turning it on for the last half.  I'm predicting the usual Kings strategy of dogging it in the second period, only to finish strong in the third.  The Gingers have been awfully quiet, but that won't last.  Speaking of quiet, where the hell has Dustin Brown been?  No hits, barely any touches... if they air his #FOMOH commercial, he'll have more commercial air time than actual ice time.  Our Captain, ladies and gentlemen. 

Stay tuned for the second period commentary! 


Second Period:

So, I was watching NHL Network this afternoon and turned on to the Bruins v. Leafs game.  The announcer was talking about the Leafs and how Frattin was looking good.  I was like “Yo, you got the wrong guy, Frattin doesn’t play for the Leafs anymore.”  But then I realized it was a replay of last year’s Game 7.  The lesson?  Fuck the East. 

Quick being Quick.  Burrows being Burrows.  Can we stop this bullshit about how Howard or Miller is gonna start for Team America next year?  It’s Quick’s net, end of story.  Howard is soft and Miller is mind-fucked.  And Timmy Thomas is…. hahahahaha, sorry, I just can’t.

Okay, that’s the second time Quick has failed to secure the rebound, with the puck hovering dangerously in the crease.  I know this because I do this ALL the time.  Maybe it’s time to get a new mitt?  Oh, and Jim Fox just mentioned it, too. 

You gotta love Doughty and how aggressive he is.  He dangles from the point, takes two steps, fires off a great shot, but keeps skating to the net in case the rebound comes his way.  Most defensemen would snap the shot and then immediately peel off back to the blue line.

I haven’t watched the Swedish version of The Girl Who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, but I imagine the villains are played by the Sedin brothers.

Kings fail to clear the zone and pay the price.  Look at that, all five players are behind the hash marks.  What a joke.  To Quick’s credit, that was a laser.  Canucks on the board, Kings still up 2-1. 

Can we please give Toffoli an 8-year max contract already?  What hustle to set up the beauty by Mike Richards.  Oh, and Dwight Kings… just when I thought I was out, he pullllllllls me back in.  And I really hope Luongo is not injured – that would cheapen this victory by the Kings.  [looks around to make sure I didn’t just jinx us… cause jinxes are totally visible…]

Too late to pick up Mike Richards for my fantasy team?  It’s pretty sad, really.  I don’t have ANY Kings on my fantasy team.  Seriously, one

Okay, that’s it – I’m getting a Nolan jersey.  Way to step up.  And that’s why fighting is and should remain in the game.  You can’t change my opinion about fighting in the game – I’ve witnessed too many cheap shots to my teammates go unpunished due to strong penalties for fighting.

Oh, and great call, KC.  Only one more Nolan assist for a Gordie Howe Hat Trick.  OH PLEASE!!!  [queues up credit card, opens]

Voynov with the grind and possession, Kopitar with the unreal fake and sick pass, and Williams with the top-shelf finish.  Just pure beauty.  And I love that little fake by Kopitar to draw Luongo down and open up the upper corner. 

OH NO!!! If you recall, the Kings DO NOT do well against mid-game backup goalie changes.   

Oh my god, this is seriously unbelievable.  Who knew the Kings possessed this kind of skill.  At least three times on that 2 on 1, I was like “Oh, you fucked this up.”  First, when Toffoli rocked too many dangles; second, when Toffoli air mails his pass to Richards; and third, when Richards decides to pass the puck out of mid-air back to Toffoli.  And somehow, it all worked out and will be Number 1 on the NHL Network.  You know, assuming it’s not past their bedtime.

If Torts didn’t show up on the Canucks’ bench for the start of the third period, would ANYONE be surprised? 

Lewis with a golden opportunity to display those dangles (and get that first goal)… but runs out of real estate.  So, does anyone on the bench want to teach Lewis how to shoot a puck higher than 11 inches?

Dustin Brown… he’s alive!!! and…… that’s the end of the second.  Nice try, Dustin, way to make yourself relevant.

Stay tuned for more third period action… unless the score holds and I switch over to the UCLA game. 


Third Period:

Hmmmmm, wasn’t Kings Assistant Coach John Stevens in The Sopranos, Season 5?

I’m pretty sure that was the third time Dustin Brown’s name was called.  And of course, he’s down on the ice, grabbing his knee.  MILK THAT PENALTY!!!  It goes without saying that if that happened to any one of us, our leg would have been completely severed.

First power play for the Kings.  Does Stevens draw up a formation to play keep-away for 19 minutes?  Well, keep-away for 2 minutes will do just fine.  You Los Angeles Kings Assistant Coaches, ladies and gentlemen!

By the way, UCLA up 24-10 against Arizona.  Wildcats with the ball, 1st and goal.  Handoff to the running back who tries to jump in the end zone, gets stuffed, ball comes out, hits the running back’s foot, UCLA recovers, touchback.   Back to the Kings game.

The Kings with another successful keep-away drill for 2 minutes on the Sestito penalty.  Burn that clock, Stevens!!!

Bieksa and Brown going at it in Luongo’s Lack’s crease.  Without a doubt the most significant thing our captain has done all game.  Drawing the Kings’ first penalty was the second.  #FOMOH was the third.

You know, I always find it funny that goalies, when they’re on the bench, wear only a hat or nothing at all.  Whenever a puck comes up or near the bench, they simply flash the glove to cover their face.  I guess it would look pretty ridiculous for a goalie on the bench to wear a player’s helmet, maybe one with a half-shield or even a cage.  I know I wouldn’t wear one.  But what I WOULD wear is something like this: 

Sestito with the hat trick!!! (Bob Probert Hat Trick)

(too soon? sorry.)

Yikes, Muzzin’s shot blasts Toffoli’s leg.  After Martinez almost got run, I was thinking “All we gotta do is not get injured” and then Toffoli goes down.  I’m holding my breath until I see him on the ice again.  [Sees Toffoli on ice, unclenches butt]

So, the game was essentially over after the second period.  But you know what?  It ALWAYS feels good to beat the Canucks, whether by a small or “humongous big” margin.  I’m not like some of my friends, who place the Canucks as their most hated team in the NHL.  (For me, that’s the Sharks.  Without a doubt.)  But I still haven’t forgotten the Canucks dominating the Kings in the playoffs back in 2010.  And so there’ll be an extra bounce in my step tomorrow morning as I get obliterated watching football in Culver City, thanks to tonight’s win. 

Lots of positives: Vey and Toffoli cementing their spots on the roster.  You know, until Carter comes back.  But what scares me is whether Vey just upped his trade value to a very attractive level.  NHL teams would be stupid to trade with the Kings and not ask for a prospect like Toffoli, Vey, Pearson, or even Andreoff.  Maybe Jones, too.  Meh, I’m not totally sold on Jones, especially after last year’s step back. 

The other positive is that I’m going to ask Santa for a Jordan Nolan jersey.  Well, maybe just a shirsey.  There can only be one named jersey for me (and it rhymes with “Belly Foody”). 

What does Vigo Sutter think about today’s performance?

Much love till my next post.