Friday, February 15, 2013

2013 Season: I'm still not happy

I have refrained from writing so far this season because the NHL Lockout completey sapped my enthusiasm for The Cup victory (and subsequent celebrations), the LA Kings, and hockey in general. Of course, I will always LOVE hockey and my Kings, but I was and still am so pissed off at the NHL Commissioner, owners, and players. I have no idea who to hate more or who to blame for half a season of hockey, so instead my disgust is dispersed evenly among everyone. In the end, I have to remember the NHL is a business and the owners need to be able to at least try and turn a profit and the players have their right to be paid what they are worth (or what they think they are worth; hey, I'm sure all of us at one point bitched about our salary and benefits). However, I am most upset that a new agreement took as long as it did. I think it is incredibly inexcusable that all involved parties could not come to an agreement before the season should have started. It makes me wonder: why the heck do I love a business this much?

As much as I love hockey and the LA Kings, I have decided not to buy any tickets to games this season. That Drew Doughty jersey I've been pining over for the past several seasons? It can wait. In fact, I was going to put a moratorium on all spending this season, but I couldn't pass up the chance to purchase this gaudy bastard:

awwwwww shhhiiiiiiiiiiiittttttt! That ring looks DAMN FINE on my hand!
The Cup ring is so awesome it ate my wedding ring AND engagement ring.
Well worth the $25.

I wouldn't have gotten it at all if it hadn't been for my hermano's burning desire to have one himself. I didn't even know such an item existed until he texted me one day asking if I could stop by the Team LA Store to get him one (and he even offered to pay for mine). Unfortunately, I was out of town for the next few days and, of course, all things Stanley quickly sold out. Thankfully the Kings re-stocked their store and my hermano was heading to the next game so he bought four.  FOUR! Seriously, after the initial text conversation I was beginning to worry he was going to turn into the Hulk and race up the 110 in a fit of rage determined to get his hands on a replica Cup ring, which actually looks nothing like the actual LA Kings Stanley Cup ring (am I the only one bothered by this??? I'm not even talking about the diamonds.  Where is the huge Kings logo?). Anyway, I'm still happy with the ring and my hermano is definitely happy. He doesn't have to troll ebay. He doesn't have to fret over buying a counterfeit. Yes, these were all concerns he had.

And about that half season of hockey? Yeah, it sure does look like the season started haphazardly. Glad to see most of the Kings kept their Cup celebrations going during the lockout as opposed to training for the eventual start to the season. A lot of the games have been a wee bit painful to watch. The Kings will be lucky to make it into the playoffs this year......wait, I seem to recall saying that last year.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Kings v. Ducks (Third Period) - Live Blogging!

(Second Intermission)

Stoll’s grandmom is awesome – she reminds me of Happy Gilmore’s grandma.  “You didn’t pay your taxes, grandma?!”

These “Secondhand smoke is a killer” commercials are awesome – I wish my secondhand smoke morphed into a hot chick with jugs who immediately performs a striptease.  Too much to ask?  

(Third Period)

Okay, that’s better – I’ve got my replica Stanley Cup Champions ring on, which means it’s time to win.

Bob talking about Teemu being 42 and still rocking.  Wife asked if he’s the one Duck I actually like.  Yes, it’s really difficult not to like Teemu, especially if you were collecting hockey cards back in the day and was stoked to get a Teemu Upper Deck rookie card.

Sweet giveaway by Nolan on the 2 on 1.  Come on, Nolan, just rip it, like your fists.

I’d like to modify Bob Miller’s pronunciation of Jonathan Bernier to “Beyrn-neeyay.”

Hiller giving up the juiciest rebound off Kopitar’s shot – and just stays in the butterfly, waiting for Brown to shoot it.  Jim Fox calls Hiller’s movement “calm and relaxed” – I call it “Derrrrrrrpppp…”
Penner has been absolutely invisible since drawing that penalty in the first period.  So has Lewis, Clifford, Carter, and Fraser (not surprising). 

Kopitar with a rare two-penalty game.  Not his finest effort to say the least.  I think he’s just pissed that Bobby Ryan hasn’t said Hello since the puck dropped in the first period. 

Sutter with a classic open-mouthed blank stare from the bench – I think he’s wondering who’s that guy with the white mask in the Kings’ net.

[resisting all urges to comment on Anaheim’s power play…]

My buddy’s girlfriend was a Ducks fan.  I’m so glad they broke up.

And there it is – what a joke.  Bernier stopping the first shot and our defense completely unaware that it’s their job to clear the rebound.

Sweet, the Kings have called a “hat trick timeout” to find out what the fuck is going on.

My god, those are some BOOTY SHORTS on that Ice Girl!  Might have to take a bathroom break right now.  
Bernier Analysis – When our defense lets quick forwards blow by them on the wing, Bernier challenges that forward by coming out of his crease, moving laterally.  The problem is that he’s not quick enough to recover should the forward slide the pass back to the slot.  We haven’t been burned yet, but this might come back to burn us.

Penner with a shitty penalty.  Sutter should just tell him to go straight to the locker room.  The Tale of Two Penners continues.  Can someone tell him that the playoffs start next week?  While you’re at it, can someone tell Brown that there are trade rumors floating around?  Thanks.

Bobby Ryan really selling that slewfoot.

Patrick O’Neal with the NHL injury report.  Michael Chiklis and some skinny Asian dude in the background.

Scuderi with a monster block that probably would’ve shattered a normal person’s leg into a billion shards.

Do you want to know why our penalty kill is sucking balls?  The penalty kill is all about putting pressure on the puckholder – which requires the killers to skate hard and force bad passes.  “Active sticks” is what Jim Fox likes to call it.  Unfortunately, the Kings look like they ran marathons right before the game. 

Drewiske, after taking a puck to the face, shaking it off like a man.  

Bernier almost getting schooled by Selanne while holding the V-H position. 

And just like that, there’s six minutes left.  Hiller doesn’t really deserve this win – instead of a “W” the statistician should give Hiller a “PiN” – Participated in Net.

Ducks are playing “prevent D” right now.

Doughty with a monster shot, blocked by Allen (in the back!) – were it anyone else, they’d be paralyzed.

Upcoming schedule – meh, whatever.  Not looking forward to the Detroit-St. Louis back-to-back.  Can’t wait to see some JMFJ jerseys.

Wow, pulling Bernier with 2:50 left?  In the words of Teddy KGB: “Veeeeeeeeeery aggyresssssive.”

Selanne with an empty netter.  Game.  Blouses.

Well, unless Nolan unleashes some more NOLANFISTS, that’s it for tonight.

Final thoughts:
Kings looked winded and, at times, drunk.  The first period was a joke and we were flat-out lucky to keep it respectable throughout the entire game (until Bonino’s hat trick).  Our defense is atrocious and we were completely exposed by forwards taking it behind the net with speed and finding the creeping forward at the top of the crease.  Hiller sucks, so that’s a relief, but he was better than Quick/Bernier.  This is another one of those “sleep it off and skate hard in practice tomorrow morning” type of games.  What a joke – these are the Stanley Cup Champions?  I keep having to remind myself that we’re fielding essentially the same fucking team (minus Greene and Mitchell – HUGE losses at the blue line) as we did last June.  It’s not like Chicago, who had to blow up their team after they won.  It’s the same guys sucking wind, failing to clear pucks, failing to block shots (except for Doughty and Drewiske’s face), failing to pick up the crashing forward, taking stupid offensive penalties, and just quitting.

We’ll see what kind of team shows up on Tuesday in Columbus. 

Things I’m thankful for: Not having to listen to Brian Hayward for 3 hours.

Much love till my next post.

Kings v. Ducks (Second Period) - Live Blogging!

(First Intermission)
Oh man, Bobby Ryan and Kopitar “texting every day since they’ve been back [from Sweden]” – awwww, that’s sooooo sweet.  I’m thinking they should buy each other those awesome 2” x 3” Valentine’s Day cards and include some “Be Mine” sweethearts candy.  Shit, Valentine’s Day is approaching – time to get serious.

Damn, it’s the “DAVE” commercial.  I never saw that ginger-Dave on “These are the Daves I know” from Kids and the Hall, so I refuse to acknowledge ginger-Dave’s existence.

I don’t get it – Jim Fox and Bob Miller CONSTANTLY flash their Stanley Cup Champions ring (as they should!), but Daryl Evans keeping it bare. 

(Second Period Starts)
Allll right, time to start the second period.  Kings with the 5 on 3 advantage for the next 50 seconds.  In other words, time for the Kings to shoot the puck wide for the next 50 seconds. 

What a beauty.  Brown untouched in front and calmly collects the rebound.

Boudreau has to pull Hiller – he looks awful.  On second thought, just kidding – don’t listen!!!

Wow, Hiller still in net.  Thanks!!!

Woah, Bob dropping the old-school “Mighty Ducks” line! I like how he chuckled after that gaffe.

Jesus, when was the last time Hiller collected a rebound?  Did someone tell Hiller during warmups to cross his eyes, and then smacked Hiller in the back of the head?

Man, left-handed goalies freak me the fuck out.  That’s mostly why I absolutely HATED the Mathieu Garon era – well, also because he sucked. 

Holy shit, Nolan is REPPING INDIAN LAND!!! What a badass – Nolan throwing some serious haymakers, but Allen on his knees still throwing back.  Great fight.  Westgarth-WHO?

Fowler doing his “stand up quick after soaking in the hot tub for 30 minutes and pass out” impression.

I’m convinced someone told Doughty that the voters for the Norris Trophy are in attendance today.  He is playing like a man possessed.  Like Forrest Whitaker in Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

Bernier calmly stoning that breakaway attempt.  No rebound.  Hiller is jelly, brah!

I can’t tell if our defense is simply terrible today, or if our forwards aren’t backchecking worth shit.  I think it’s the latter.

I really think Bob Miller is LOVING the fact that Jon Bernier is in net – mostly so he can use that faux French-Canadian accent in pronouncing it “Ber-neeyay”…

Drewiske almost getting burned on a through-pass, but saved by the linesman. 

This game is getting dull – is Nolan out of the box yet?

Sloppy play by the Kings leading to a near scoring chance on the wraparound and a terrible penalty by Kopitar. 

Good to see Anaheim’s power play is worse than ours.

Man, I forgot how awesome Ber-neeyay is.  Well, maybe it’s not so much him but his white mask. 

Fuck, shame on me for talking trash about Anaheim’s power play.  That one barely trickled in.  My worst nightmare has come true – there has been wayyyyy too much Bro Hymn lately.  Seriously, how did that one trickle in?  Tuck that armpit in, bro!

Well, if I’m Dean Lombardi, I’m keeping Bernier and letting him go for nothing – Sutter isn’t going to start Bernier enough for interested suitors to get a good idea of what they’re getting and, therefore, won’t pay the price we’d want.  So, F it – let Bernier back up Quick the rest of the season and then set him free into the wild.

Is it just me or is Carter just going through the motions? 

Doughty slamming his butt end into the floor – I’m loving the intensity.  Then again, it’s the only display of intensity (other than NOLANFISTS) from this pathetic Kings team.  What a joke of a second period. 

Time to start knocking on Hiller again – although, before I start, I think I’ll give him credit for being the first(?) goalie to rock the gold cage. 

Carter getting his helmet knocked off and then sweeping it into Hiller’s net – that was awesome.  Almost as awesome as the Kings giving up another gimme to Souray right out of the box.  Tie up that fucking trailing forward, for fucks sake.

Wow, I haven’t seen a Kings goalie stickhandle with ease since…

And just like that, Williams goes top cheese and we’re tied!!!

My god, what a bounce – but it’s still Hiller’s fault for not sealing the top shelf (or even the top HALF of the goal) off the post.

Annnnnnddddd, there’s the usual display of stickhandling by a Kings goalie!  Here’s hoping our penalty kill unit blocks some shots this time around – rather, someone other than Norris-contending Doughty.

Hey kids who are budding goaltenders: DO NOT pay attention to anything Jonas Hiller is doing right now.

[resisting urge to talk shit about Anaheim’s power play…]
My god, I can’t believe I just did that – what a monster shot by Palmieri (WHO? That’s definitely a deli meat).  Shame on us for not clearing the puck when we had the chance, again. 

Well, if there’s one thing we’re really good at, it’s making Hiller give up awful rebounds for goals…

I think someone switched Hiller’s contacts with contacts to use at 3D movies. 

Speaking of jinxing things, 2:26 to go in the second and no requests to stop watching TV.  This is awesome.

Listen, if the Kings were coming off an OT thriller from Friday night, I wouldn’t feel too bad about the way we’re skating.  But we look slow, out of sync, and pathetic.  Only Hiller is saving us from ourselves.

And that’s it for the second. 

More to follow…

Kings v. Ducks - Live Blogging!

Hermano here.
We’re live from the Hermano Spreewell household.  The beauty of being married is that you live with someone who has a much better memory.  The over/under for when I’ll be drawn away from the game to complete some long-forgotten chore is probably 6 minutes into the second period.

Thankfully, I don’t have to do the “pause the game, turn on IHeartRadio, and attempt to sync the game with Nick Nickson and Daryl Evans” veteran move, on account of Fox Sports showing the game on two channels.  I’d like to thank everyone for petitioning their Congressman for convincing Fox Sports that Kings fans would rather “watch” the game on AM 1150 than listen to Bryan Hayward.  Now I know how Lakers-haters feel about Mychal Thompson.

We’re under way!

Woah, Penner with an early shot attempt (that went wide), trying to show everyone he hasn’t lost any steam after sitting in the nose bleeds for three straight games.

I see Sutter has rewarded Mike Richards for his beautiful shootout goal by starting his line.

I’d better not hear Bro Hymn in the next three hours.  Seriously, Warchild.  Isn’t Pennywise from Hermosa?  Shame on you, Orange County.

I hate the Ducks, but mostly for two reasons: (1) Brian Hayward is the worst color commentator in the history of sports and (2) the Ducks won the Cup before we did.  That last one really bugged me prior to June.

Hiller looks rusty – that’s a good sign.


Well, enjoy that assist, kid from the LBC.  My god, Bonino (is that a type of salami?) just smoked both Muzzin and Quick.  I think he just earned a shit-load more respect from everyone in the league.

Did our team just come from Happy Hour?  I feel like everyone on the Kings just chugged a stein of beer before warmups.

Williams – great move, great non-finish.  Kinda like his shootout attempt.

Did everyone on the Kings ingest valium?  This is ridiculous.  I’m launching an investigation – I think someone bribed the Kings equipment manager and poured liquid lead into everyone’s skates.


Speaking of ears bleeding.

I’d like to welcome Jon Bernier to the 2013 season!!!! UP THAT TRADE VALUE!!!

In all honesty, I love Bernier.  I still remember his first start in London and the sick side-to-side save he had against [insert dude from Anaheim].

Woah, since when did Bernier ditch the Reebok pads?  Let’s hope CCM is the real deal.

Are the Kings able to call a 20 minute time-out?  No?  I’d like to phone a friend, then.

Has a team ever just skated off the rink and into the locker room?  I feel like the Kings might not return to the ice after this TV time out.

Some part of me wishes Jon Quick was wearing a hat that had a photo of the Conn Smythe.  Then again, 2 goals on 3 shots ain’t exactly Conn Smythe numbers. 

Wow, we’ve got possession inside Anaheim’s zone for more than 10 seconds!

Hiller rocking a Koho stick – do they still make those?  Sick.  My first (legit) stick was a Koho.  My first non-legit stick was a Mylec, obviously.  #CaliforniaKid

Jim Fox says “People are buying in to Bruce Boudreau.”  I think that translates to: “People are learning to tune out Bruce Boudreau’s mouth-diarrhea.”

What are the odds that, after drawing that penalty, Penner goes to the bench and asks Sutter “Did you see that?”

I feel like Hiller’s eyes are seeing everything inverted.  Now, if we can only get a shot on goal…

Yup, that was pretty.  Brown with the Kings second straight goal – in two games.

I’m not sure if our power play is rocking, or if the Ducks are just atrocious on the penalty kill.  I have a feeling that question won’t be answered for another six months.

Kings tie it up.  I’m actually positive the Kings scored 5 seconds before that, so we’ll see who they credit with the goal.

See, I told you Hiller is seeing everything inverted.

Do you think Stoll wishes his hair wasn’t so curly?  Or, ladies, does that add to his appeal? 

Patrick O’Neal talking about Mike Richards and his $700 belt.  I guess you have that kind of money lying around for a belt if you wear the same Redneck Rebellion t-shirt 7 days a week.

Whenever I hear $700 belt, I immediately think about Charlie Murphy and his $500 sweater.  “I WANT MOOOOOOORE!!!”  (If you don’t know where that’s from, you’d better youtube the deleted scenes from Charlie Murphy’s True Hollywood Stories.

Sick save by Bernier, thanks to a sweet turnover by Penner.  I’ve got a man-boner for Bernier’s white mask – reminds me so much of the old school “Jason” style masks.

I’m loving the tips we’re getting in front of the net – if the Ducks allow us to stand untouched at the top of the crease, we’re gonna get a few more… unless they block 200 shots like Nashville on Thursday.

Jesus, we are getting dominated down below.  Fraser and Clifford, failing to pick up Getzlaf at the top of the crease.  Man, he skated in UNTOUCHED.  My guess is that Fraser and Clifford didn’t want to get Getzlaf’s Hair-AIDS.

[takes break to spend another $200 for tickets to win an authentic LA Kings Stanley Cup Championship ring]

This is officially the worst I’ve seen the Kings play since going up by 4 goals against San Jose in the playoffs two years ago. 

Jim Fox breaking down the Doughty-Selanne “game within the game.”  My guess is that Selanne told Doughty to stay away from his daughter.  [Checks Wikipedia – Selanne’s daughter is 6 years old… Whatever.]

Hiller looks awful.  Did everyone notice that Dan Ellis (the world’s greatest fake Twitter account) got a shutout the other day?  What a pro.  #PayThatManHisMoney

Drewiskie drawing a sweet interference penalty.  I’m guessing Beauchemin told the ref “That guy can’t even skate!”  Interestingly, that’s what the guys who play against my beer league hockey team say when we draw penalties.

End of the first.  Looking forward to 5:59 into the second period.  More to follow…