Author Topic: Hockey Discussion: The Leafs Would Like To Borrow Taylor Hall's Horseshoe  (Read 148065 times)

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Offline apdude

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #50 on: March 24, 2011, 03:38:31 PM »
Because Calgary sucks!

Before the period starts the goalies typically scrape up the area infront of the goal to give them more grip to go side to side.  This leaves some ruts in the ice.  When the puck bounced on the ice it probably hit a rut that caught the edge of the puck and made it deflect like that.  Very unlikely to happen again.

Offline Stogi

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #51 on: March 24, 2011, 03:38:50 PM »
You can see the puck hit and flip on its side and then fly away.
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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #52 on: March 24, 2011, 09:26:06 PM »
If Bobrovsky played like this every night the President's Trophy race would still be interesting.
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Offline apdude

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #53 on: March 24, 2011, 09:31:13 PM »
Do you think they will go with him every game in the playoffs?

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #54 on: March 24, 2011, 09:35:44 PM »
Well, he doesn't always play this well. They'll probably stick with whoever's hot between him and Boucher, and maybe even call up Leighton from the AHL considering how fantastic he was in the playoffs last year.
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Offline apdude

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #55 on: March 25, 2011, 02:51:14 AM »
I told myself I wouldn't get too optimistic about the Sharks chances this year and after the slow start I would have been happy just to make the playoffs, but it's happening again.  I'm starting to think this team may do more than a first round win.  The mid season pickups has sparked some life into the team and the playmakers (Marleau, and Pavelski) are starting to make plays, and the young guys are really playing well.  I had my doubts but now I think this team is better than last years team and has there best opportunity to win it all.

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #56 on: April 01, 2011, 08:17:55 PM »
Goddammit, I don't know why Laviolette keeps giving Boucher starts. Bobrovsky's been really hot lately and should be getting prepped for the main role in the playoffs. Hell, at this point, the way Boosh has been playing lately, I'd consider calling up Leighton from the Phantoms. It's probably too late for that, though; he was great in the playoffs last year, but he's been playing against AHL players all year, and would need more time than we have left to get back up to speed.
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Offline apdude

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #57 on: April 01, 2011, 08:37:39 PM »
I just hope the Sharks keep their foot on the accelerator eventhough they clinched a playoff spot last night with the 6-0 beating they put on Dallas.

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #58 on: April 01, 2011, 09:15:25 PM »
I don't know what to make of the Flyers. They beat Pittsburgh 5-2 and then lose to Atlanta and are right now losing to New Jersey.
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Offline Armak88

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #59 on: April 02, 2011, 03:24:05 PM »
The flyers are just coasting to the playoffs. They will be fine once playoff hockey starts because they are a character team and know how to turn it up when it matters. The concerns about the san jose and vancouver doing the same are more well founded. The last few years I have pulled for the canucks because I want to see a canadian team win and I will probably pull for them this year as well. It bothers me, however, that even though they have now clinched the presidents trophy I still don't have very much confidence in their ability to pull off a stanley cup. Right now what I want to see happen is the canadiens lose the rest of their games and the leafs win the rest of their games so that the last game of the season between the two is for a playoff spot. It won't happen but I can dream.
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Offline Shaymin

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #60 on: April 02, 2011, 03:28:46 PM »
The thing is, no team in NHL history has been as dominant as the Canucks have this year.

In addition to clinching the President's Trophy, the Canucks currently lead the league in goals scored, fewest goals against, powerplay percentage and penalty killing percentage. The closest any team has come to doing that since these stats started being kept was the late 70s Canadiens (who won 60 and 58 games in the seasons where they were close).
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Offline Armak88

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #61 on: April 02, 2011, 03:39:27 PM »
The thing is, no team in NHL history has been as dominant as the Canucks have this year.

In addition to clinching the President's Trophy, the Canucks currently lead the league in goals scored, fewest goals against, powerplay percentage and penalty killing percentage. The closest any team has come to doing that since these stats started being kept was the late 70s Canadiens (who won 60 and 58 games in the seasons where they were close).


I know all of these things and they are very compelling on paper, but the playoffs are always another story. My two main concerns with vancouver are their goal tending and their grit. First, I personally think that Luongo is the most talented goalie in the league. Watching the way he moves and the angles he takes he is the best, yet it seems like he lets in soft goals in big games and goaltending is mostly mental. Second, vancouver doesn't have any real tough guys. Burrows and Lapiere are not real tough guys. The Canucks like to play a fast game in both skating and puck movement, and they do it better than anyone else, but you can't win a seven game series without getting your hands dirty. Again I would prefer the canucks to win it, but I have my doubts.
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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #62 on: April 02, 2011, 03:44:09 PM »
My issue with the Flyers is based on what happened last year. They barely made the playoffs, but got hot at the right time and went all the way to the finals. This year they dominated most of the year, but are getting cold going into the playoffs.
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Offline apdude

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #63 on: April 02, 2011, 05:27:35 PM »
Western Conference Outlook

Vancouver and SJ have been the hottest teams in the west for about the last 30 games.  The rest of the teams are good but have either health issues  to some of their top guys (Kopitar for LA and Hiller for Ana) or are just misfiring.  Detroit should be playing better, but they are struggling right now.  Chicago will have to play hard just to make it because they have a tough schedule at the end but are lucky that Dallas is struggling right now.  The grittiest team left will probably be Nashville, but I don't see them giving Vancouver or San Jose much of a threat.  Pheonix will be a bit of a challenge because they are one of those defensively minded teams that are allways tough in a playoff situation. 

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #64 on: April 03, 2011, 03:25:41 PM »
Man, the Flyers just aren't any good in shootouts this year. Luckily, we're almost to the point of the season where that becomes irrelevant.
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Offline Ian Sane

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #65 on: April 04, 2011, 12:26:14 PM »
Quote
The closest any team has come to doing that since these stats started being kept was the late 70s Canadiens

Comparisons to the 70's Habs dynasty.  Geez, no pressure or anything.
 
Despite the utter dominance the Canucks have shown this season the reason I don't have complete confidence in them winning it all is because this core group has yet to make it past the second round.  Some teams go to the conference finals or the finals before finally winning it all.  I can see how a Philly fan would have some confidence because the Flyers were in the finals last year and in the conference finals on 2008.  It's a core that has proven it can go deep in the playoffs.
 
I remember a spell last year where the Canucks could not kill a penalty to save their lives.  Every time they were short handed they got scored on.  That sort of ineptitude was never demonstrated in the regular season.  We've had times where Luongo is just a machine all year and then has his absolute worst performance in the deciding game of the playoffs where we get eliminated.  You can't block that out of your mind regardless of how well the team does in the regular season.  You don't forget the playoff failures until they've shown they can succeed.
 
I also remember years of the West Coast Express lighting up the league every year and then struggling to score in the playoffs.  We aren't San Jose but we have witnessed a team shrinking up in the playoffs before.
 
Of course if this level of play continues into the playoffs I will get more confident the further they go.  If they make it past the second round I'll truly believe that this is for real.

Offline apdude

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #66 on: April 11, 2011, 03:16:23 PM »
Well it's finally playoff time, how does everyone feel about their matchups? 

I think the sharks should have a pretty easy first round match up since travel won't be so far and there is allways extra jump for a NorCal vs SoCal match up.   I'm sure Jonathan Quick will probably steal a game or two for the kings but without Kopitar and Williams at less than 100 percent the Sharks should win this series in 5 or 6. 

Tough draw for Vancouver, granted Chicago is not as good a last year but still a tough team.  I hope Philly can pull it together because Miller is allways pretty good. 

I'm looking forward to the Boston/Montreal matchup I'm guessing it's going to be pretty physical after what happened durring the regular season. 

Good luck to everyone (except LA)!

Offline Ian Sane

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #67 on: April 11, 2011, 03:32:16 PM »
Well, might as well face our demons right off the bat, I guess.  Today at the office there is the usual excitement abou the playoffs but there is a slight hint of dread regarding the Chicago matchup.  Those guys have just had our number the last few years.  I'm picking Vancouver but I would not be surprised by an upset.  Hell, I wouldn't consider it an upset.  But then I could compare it to the Red Wings of the 90's who seemingly by fate had to conquer their arch-nemesis, the Avs, before they could win the cup.  If the Canucks are to win it all, overcoming Chicago would just seem like a requirement.

In my playoff pool at work I've got players from Vancouver, Detroit, Anaheim, Philly, Tampa Bay and Washington.  TB is my real wildcard but I picked them because I don't see Pitt going far without their stars.  Anaheim is against perennial playoff jobbers Nashville so I figured they were safe to get to the second round and will benefit from some momentum.

Unfortunately, apdude, I did not pick San Jose after getting burned in many previous pools by them.  But then years ago I said "to hell with Ottawa" for the same reason and then that year they made it to the finals.  So maybe that's your good luck charm.  Ian Sane finally decided not to pick them so they HAVE to go far.  If it can **** me over, then it will happen. ;)

Offline apdude

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #68 on: April 11, 2011, 03:54:37 PM »
I hear ya IanSane, the Sharks have fooled me plenty of times, but it just feels like they are clicking right now and their 4th line finally has some grit and is a scoring threat. 

Maybe we should have a playoff pool here just for fun.  Pick the series winners and how many games.  2 pts for a win and a bonus point for the correct number of games.

Here's my picks

Vancouver in 5 (but close games)
SJ in 5
Pheonix in 7 (Detroit just hasn't been playing well recently)
Anahiem in 6

Washington in 4 (I just don't like the rangers)
Philly in 6
TB in 5
Boston in 7

Offline Ceric

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #69 on: April 11, 2011, 05:08:08 PM »
No love for Nashville... But there on all the School milk here.
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Offline Ceric

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #70 on: April 14, 2011, 10:52:05 AM »
Predators beat Ducks first game 4 to 1 so, they have to do 2 more games to upset your picks Apdude if I'm reading it write.
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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #71 on: April 14, 2011, 11:26:03 AM »
I hope they do I hate the ducks.

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #72 on: April 15, 2011, 01:02:17 PM »
Sorry guys, but I gotta barge in here with today's stories of hockey greatness. I've mentioned the Uni Games once or twice briefly and I may've even mentioned I'm the captain of my university team.

Keep in mind as I tell this story that this is field hockey. Any league or level is welcome right?

So in 2009, after having the best week of my life on the Gold Coast for Uni Games 09 I made the decision to prolong my stay at university specifically for the 2011 Uni Games which would return to the Gold Coast, last year's event was held in my home city of Perth and while was still fun, there's nothing quite like venturing 3000kms to play sport and party and just leave it all there. Almost every day I fantasise about how awesome Uni Games 2011 will be. The girls, the parties, the drinking and even the pride of leading my team on the field, playing the game I love. October can't come fast enough.

Start of the year, O-Day at uni, we're signing up new players, get quite a roster, could be the most interest ever. But also at O-Day the sports officer threw me off, he told me that due to the popularity of hockey at uni games and the difficulty with scheduling due to the shortage of artificial turfs to play on we would have to qualify. Here's the thing, we're ****. Uni Games 09 we only won 1 game. Last year we won 2 despite playing short and managed to finish 5th in Division B. The rules were decided that all of Division A would automatically qualify for '11 so would the top 4 from Division B. The remaining spots in Division B would be allocated to the top ranked university of each state that didn't already meet automatic qualification at their state's regional championships.

At this point I need to mention that Perth, Western Australia is pretty much the field hockey capital of the world. Australia are the most dominant country in mens and women's competitions and the institute of sport for hockey is in Perth. Around half players in the national men and women's teams are from Western Australia. Certainly almost the whole team play and train in Perth. Perth's top club league is generally regarded as not only the most competitive regional hockey league in the world but the toughest non professional league of any sport in Australia. I do not play in it, last year I played 12 leagues below it (this year I'm playing 3rd league but that's another story.) Sporting Scholarships as you have in America do not exist in Australia due to subsidised public education, sporting drafts selecting players straight out of high school and numerous other reasons. However top level hockey players, identified by the academy as potential Australian U21 and Senior representatives are afforded many opportunities to relocate to Perth and study while they train. Those players usually goto Curtin University.

There are 5 universities in Perth and all five competed today. University of Western Australia (UWA) are the current nine time defending Division A Uni Games champions. Curtin University as I just mentioned have numerous players under pseudo sporting scholarships. Both played Division A last year and therefore automatically qualified. University of Notre Dame, the only private university in the state finished 3rd in Division B last year. So the final spot at Uni Games would be determined today by whoever finished higher between Murdoch University, where I attend, and Edith Cowan University. At last year's regionals UWA were first, Notre Dame second, Curtin third, ECU fourth and we were last. The reason's we're not very good are many, mostly the focus we place on the social aspect of the sport but also because we're the smallest University by population and least supported by our university in regards to everything. We do all the recruiting, the fundraising, book our own flights. Training and practice matches are almost soley organised by me and being me, this year we didn't even have any. ECU have extensive support and attract many athletes through their sports science courses, Curtin attract top players from across the country because this Australian Hockey Academy, where the national team trains, it's one their campus, i forgot to mention that. UWA are backed by the oldest, most successful club in the league, like a 100 year history sorta thing. Notre Dame are an interesting anomaly in that they're like us but much more focused, being a private uni means they're all a bit richer than us too but honestly I really admire the way they go about things.

So anyway, I wake up this morning, eat breakfast, throw it up. Do some other stuff like liaising with my new housemate and real estate agent, the I pickup my teammate from campus and head out to Curtin for the game. Get to the stadium, try to eat some more food while I introduce myself to some of the new players. We had a full squad of 18 due to good recruiting but I hadn't even met some of the guys let alone played together with them. First match, we're up against UWA. I sit myself on the bench first up and throw as many of the new guys on the field as I can just to make note of them. Surprisingly we came out of the blocks strongly and UWA were a shambles. They started with only 9 players including a kicking fullback due to their goalie running late. The kicking full back did manage to make a spectacular save in the opening two minutes and was given a reprieve by one of our new faces missing an unforgivable shot. By half time they've gotten their **** together, filled out the roster and put away two goals by the final whistle.

Hour break, I and most of the team go to check out the girls play, girls hockey is laughably slower than ours but whatever. A few stay back to spy on ECU and it didn't sound good. While they lost as expected they scored and overall looked a dangerous and cohesive unit. We head back over to play Notre Dame, I tried to sit this whole game out to rest myself up for ECU later but Sam pulled up sore and swapped for me in the second half. I immediately ran back and gave away a penalty stroke by dive tackling a player and preventing a certain goal. I wasn't carded because my action was almost the only one that could've been taken and they converted from the spot anyway. Notre Dame went on to beat us 4-0. ECU played them next and lost 2-1.

We were really worried, Sam confided in me that he had no confidence in us to beat ECU. Sam and I have been friends since I sat next to him in science on the first day of secondary school in 2000. We'd since lived together and led the team to the '09 Uni Games. Sam had graduated but had enrolled in a second degree partly just to go to Uni Games '11. As I said earlier I had intentionally prolonged my university career by picking up a double major. I've also failed some units and had to repeat but that isn't intentional. But yeah, we had both put a lot of emotional investment in this future weak. I gave him a false confidence captains kind of remark, stating we had a good gameplan in place for ECU and whatnot, just in case anyone else was overhearing. But I gave him a look to show I shared his sentiment. We actually did have a gameplan though, one of ECU's players was a Singaporean National representative, studying abroad in Perth. I was going to do my best to tag him out of the match, reducing us to 4 forwards playing modified roles, 2 high strikers and two attacking midfielders. Some of the more regular players we debating various lineups but I they all seemed to not include any of the news guys. With five minutes before the game I made a tough captains call and named the starting 11, including two new players in place of two close personal friends. We sorted out substitutions to give most everyone a run.

The game starts and for whatever reason the Singaporean National rep was nowhere to be seen. So tagging gameplan out the window but we did have our wings play more defensively and run our right inner as a loose striker. I reverted to a more default left inner role. Two minutes into the game they score. "Comon Murdoch, let's regroup and get one back!" I call out, typical captain rallying bullshit. I later heard that the mood on the bench turned to despair. but we did regroup, some good teamwork and running saw us work the ball up field. We were into attack for the first time, just 6 minutes into the game. (Might mention here that while traditionally hockey games are two 35 minute halves, this one off round robin style tournament had us playing only 10 minute halves with only a one minute break in between.) I had the ball about 30 yards out on the left and heard a cry for a pass. I backed off from the defender coming down on me and drag-pushed it towards the sound of the call, only looking up as to where I was passing to make any last, instinctive adjustments. One of our strikers Barney was inside the attacking D, just to the right of goal, the pass was perfect, directly to the hook of his fore stick. He picked it up, tapped himself further right to get some leverage on the goalie and slammed it in. Throughout the day Barney had always had our best chances to score and had made a mess of them up ill now. The goal was perfect and a huge boost to his confidence and team moral.

Two minutes later, our two most talented players make a brilliant break through the middle of the ground, Jayben and Andrew passed back and forth between themselves and 3 defenders. It was ridiculous and Andrew put it away to put us in the lead. A minute later and Jayben was at it again, this time with our fullback Cheyne who'd found himself up field. Cheyne ended up with just one defender to beat before the goals, he headed left to attempt a tomahawk shot but the defender was on him, flying in attacking the ball missing and hitting Cheyne's foot. Cheyne swore in agony as the final seconds ticked away. Incredibly no free, short corner or penalty stroke was awarded despite even the Curtin team, watching in the stands calling for it. 2-1 up at halftime, Cheyne made an unscheduled substitution along with the other ones. I kept myself on, we swapped one wing and the defenders reorganised themselves in Cheyne's absence. We turtled most of the second half, our goalie kept out some good balls and ECU wasted some real chances, we weren't going to secure this game without at least one more goal on the board, a draw would be no good due to ECU's superior goal difference. I dropped back deeper into defence and latched into a poorly directly ECU pass, with that time, i slowly shuffled forward, drawing ECU's defence out and letting our left wing to start moving up feild, I didn't use him though, option instead to release Andrew through the who ran with the ball and two ECU defenders into the attacking D. Things got a bit messy in there, I'm not even sure what happened but we were awarded a penalty stroke, wiping valuable time off the clock. Jayben stepped up and made no mistake. 3-1 and 40 seconds to go. It was over, we were through to the Uni Games.

We actually had one last game against Curtin straight afterward. Our whole game was really just a celebration, the whole team elated. Curtin didn't really seem to care either as they had won all their games and were saving themselves for the final against who would prove to be Notre Dame. A revelation that Cheyne had broken his toe and had to be driven to hospital put a little damper on things but after the game we stuck around to enjoy beers in the stands with the girls and watch the girl's final (Curtin vs UWA)

I just feel like a huge burden has been lifted from my shoulders. I always felt we'd step up but it was looking really dark today.

Geez I love sport.

Now in 12 hours I have to debut for my new club, against my old club playing in this third grade thing that I feel totally unprepared for. I hope my body doesn't fall apart.
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Offline Ceric

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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #73 on: April 15, 2011, 01:11:59 PM »
Lord Rabicle, thats a wall of text.  I'll read it tonight at home.
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Re: Hockey Discussion
« Reply #74 on: April 15, 2011, 09:31:22 PM »
Yeah **** it was over 2000 words. I wish I could type out uni assignments like that.
Summary would be: The odds were stacked against us, but we won the game.
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