Tuesday, October 1, 2013

When the Shanahammer Falls

Now let me tell you of a man, one Shanahan by name
He metes out fines and punishments, no two judgments the same
Took up a shining hammer when he answered Bettman's call
Now brave men flee scared lest they be the anvil when it falls

It's a breakneck world of hitting in the good old hockey game
One hundred thousand eyes on you and plays shown frame-by-frame
So don't talk back and don't be smart when he got you by the balls
Just close your eyes and hold your wallet tight 'til the Shanahammer falls

He'll shame you public from his throne of the D.O.P.S.
But 'next suspension coming down could be any man's guess
So be warned, goons and thugs from Anaheim to Montreal
You best be scared, 'cause who knows where the next Shanahammer falls

A man may not be looking when you stand up in his way
But you can't be sure on which side Shanahan woke up today
So you better speak in whispers and you tip-toe through the halls
And beware the shadow of the Shanahammer if it falls

So if a game is rough and neither ref is making calls
And you want to smash Hank Zetterberg's damn head against a wall
Go ahead and take a chance! but if you touch Jarret Stoll
Well... you better not be Raffi fuckin' Torres when the Shanahammer falls


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Thinking of the Fans: Shootout Alternatives

Personally, I think the NHL shootout is stupid.  The shootout is necessary in tournaments that are being played on a single sheet of ice, where a winner needs to be determined but teams can't be allowed to play indefinitely because the next game needs to go on.  In the NHL, there is no such need.  The NHL instituted the shootout because fans don't like games that end in ties.  This, to me, is completely fucking dumb.  Fans don't like losing either, but that's the nature of sport.  I don't see anybody trying to eliminate losses from the NHL.

Oh wait--Teams get points for losing, now.  I forgot.

Okay so anyway losses are being marginalized a little bit and wins are being inflated and ties are a thing of the past.  Thanks, NHL!  You've made your league a happier place to be a fan.  Now will you please expand the playoffs to allow 30 teams?  Fans hate it when their teams miss the playoffs.

Despite the NHL's best efforts to make the fans happy by allowing more than half the league's teams to have winning records, there has been some push-back from people who don't like tie-breaking shootouts, but still don't like ties.  With these idiots in mind, I write an open letter to the NHL...

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


So this offseason is shit and we can't see the end of it. My sister's moving to new york and i've had a few drinks. deal with it. at a party, by the way, not like, by myself, like a loser or something. Anyway so hockey is cool. It's september 11, now, and I am seriously watching a BEST OF THOMAS GREISS video on the sharks' website right now. how sweet is that? fucking sweet. When he shut down the penguins in the shootout? that was cool. the shootout is cool, even though it's totally stupid. yeah, i said it. It's stupid. Thomas Greiss totally exceeded my expectations last season. The year we got Dany Heatley, I went to the Kings stadium and watched the Sharks Kings game. It was before the home opener. the sharks went down 4-0. my friends and i started talking shit with some kings fans and ended up buying rounds back and forth. This was before the kings were any good (like 2 years ago) and while we were out on a patio drinking crown and shitting on ducks fans (I shook a ducks fan's hand for the first time. it made my lip curl) the sharks came back to 4-3. my friend and I got back to our seats in time to see Heatley's first goal as a shark. that was cool. also those kings fans were cool. fuck the ducks. oh and I got to a railing in time to see brad staubitz pick a fight with ----- ivanans and have jody shelly step in for him to keep his face from being obliterated. jody shelley was a stand-up guy. Is a stand-up guy, for all I know. Anyway that was the night that thomas greiss came into the game at 4-0, had the sharks tie the game in the third period, and let a goal in from behind the goal line in the right corner. That was only the third game of the season, but I never fully trusted him again, until this past season. He wasn't flexible like Irbe. He didn't control the play like Nabby. He didn't make a solid wall like Niemi. He did win a bunch of games though. I noticed. He was good. Plus its cool that the sharks are the only team with German players. The entire starting line-up for the 2010 German Olympic team was sharks draftees and denis seidenberg. They got their asses kicked, but they were up against Sweden, Finland, and... uh...Belarus, but that was also cool, that they were a bunch of sharks draftees. Anyway, I believe in Thomas Greiss. Thank you.

(not seen: thomas greiss probably makes another save, but the shootout and its coverage are fucking stupid.)(yes, the video linked to the Best of Thomas Greiss promotion does not feature his game-winning save.)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Why Are People Mad at the Florida Panthers for Winning Their Division?

These rules have been in place for some time, now.  Every year, at least one team is elevated to a seed that is higher than their accumulated points rank in the conference (and definitely league) standings.  This year, the Phoenix Coyotes and the Florida Panthers have each won their respective division for the first time.  Two warm-weather teams are elevated to top-three seeds and all of a sudden this playoff-seeding format is a disgrace to the league?

Ostensibly, the argument that the come-lately detractors use is that these teams have even fewer points than usual, for a division-leader.  Oh no!  The system is broken!  It's a travesty that playoffs are seeded by geography, rather than merit (as determined by points).  But in all the bitching and moaning about geographical determination of seeds, how many calls have there been to move from the 8/8 Western/Eastern conference-aligned playoffs to a much more equitable 16-seed league format?  Last year, Dallas would have made the playoffs in such a format, bumping an East-Coast team from the post-season, and puting all 5 Pacific Division teams in the Top 16.  I didn't hear much complaining in the media about that!

All the Eastern Conference Fans That Think That the Southeast Division Is Weak, have some consideration for the fact that they are dealing with the incalculable hardship of having to leave their time-zone to play a divisional team for the first time!  They even have to do it after December!  It's so hard!

The schedules are made according to divisions and conferences.  It makes sense that the winners of the divisions should be awarded the top three seeds because, while there are times when a division-leader may be a weak team ahead of weaker teams, sometimes a division-leader is only a step ahead of the rest of their highly competitive division; sometimes, a strong team is vaulted to the top by the rest of their weak division (VANCOUVER).  It's impossible to gauge the fairness of a given team's competition.  Therefore, it is fairest to judge them first among the teams who have similar schedules and competition.  This is not a problem of division-leaders being the top three seeds in the Eastern Conference.  This is a problem of the Penguins and Flyers being bumped down the list behind the Panthers, a team for which nobody really gives a shit.

In conclusion:  Quit complaining, you lousy, coddled, whiny, East-Coast bitches!


Saturday, April 7, 2012

81 Games Later

This season hasn't been too up or down, really.  There was a bad losing stretch on the Tennis Road Trip; there was a nice win-streak when Marty Havlat first joined the line-up.  In fact, after 81 games, the Sharks have a regular season record of 33-33-15.  They are dead even!  This final game of the season will determine whether the Sharks end the season with a winning, losing, or even record!

I've had to remind myself the past week or so that this is how I wanted it.  After watching the Sharks coasting into the playoffs with a strong team, only to have weak starts to the post-season, I welcomed the opportunity to enter the playoffs, riding a hot streak.  I was going to be happy to be the underdog--to have a lesser burden of expectation.  Only, I had forgotten what it looks like to be the underdog.  It looks kinda like the other team is going to win.  The Sharks are very likely be playing a team that they have not been able to beat this year, either the Canucks or the Blues.  The Sharks, this year, are 0-3-1 against the Canucks and 0-4-0 against the Blues.

Normally, this is where it is said that regular season match-ups don't matter, once the playoffs start, but, the last two years, the Sharks have been eliminated in the Semi-Finals by teams against whom they had gone 1-3-0 and 0-3-1 (Blackhawks and Canucks, respectively, both from memory).  Lop-sided regular season records such as those give me pause.

But this year, I don't care.  This is what I wanted.  A tight race to the finish.  Something we can ride into the playoffs.  I really am not concerning myself about what the records say, because they're depressing.  Also, because this team is just now coming together; I can tell myself that this is not the same team that lost all those games earlier in the year.  They're hitting people.  They're fighting.  The deadline-acquired players are looking more and more at home.  Most importantly: they're winning games and, from here on out, that's pretty much all I ask of them.  Go, Sharks!