Monday, January 21, 2008

Gameday Preview: Caps VS Pens

Who: Washington Capitals vs Pittsburgh Penguins
Where: Mellon Arena
When: Monday, January 21, 7:30 pm

Broadcast Info: Versus, TSN

Media Notes
Caps' Site
Pens' Site
Washington Post
Washington Times
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Going into tonight's game the Caps face a tough challenge - they are attempting to win four straight for the first time this season. Not a small task against a Penguins team that, despite being rattled by injuries, scrapped out a shutout win in Montreal two days ago. The Caps are playing their best hockey of the season, though, and will provide a tough challenge in their own right to the Crosby-less Pens.

Speaking of which...

Crosby is out with an ankle sprain. You may not have heard - it's not like it has gotten any press or coverage or anything lately, but yes, Captain Crosby is out for an unknown length of time with a high ankle sprain. It's a horrible blow for any team to have a player out with such an injury; it's even worse when that player is not only your leader and your best player but one of the best players in the league.

Fortunately there is a silver lining, albeit a small one. With Crosby out, the media focus now shifts to the rest of the team - the band of warriors who pull on the mighty Penguin crest night after night and toil in the shadow of Sidney Crosby.

The Merry Men to Crosby's Robin Hood, if you will.

And of course we here in the Cheap Seats would like nothing more than to introduce you to some of these hidden talents, diamonds in the rough - the unknown Penguins.

Tom Cruise - Every team needs a cheerleader. Every team needs a nut. When the Penguins acquired the rights to Tom earlier this year, though, little did they know they would be getting both. Known as much for his riveting locker room speeches as he is for sliding down the ice in his tighty whities, Cruise has brought a little spark to the franchise. And when he gets really excited, you can even see him jump up and down on the bench with unadulterated glee - truly a team player, that Tom.

Pam Anderson - After starting goaltender Fleury was taken out with an ankle sprain, the Pens needed someone to fill the void. They got their man, er, woman, in Pammy. Her strength lies in her buxom features, providing ample targets that players shoot at instead of the net behind her. Rumors that management fears an impending explosion one day have been consistently denied.

Fabio - Fabio was brought in to shore up the lackluster Pens' defense last year, giving them the size needed to keep the puck out of the net while helping them to fulfill their mullet quota. It's rumored that rushing forwards occasionally lose themselves in his eyes and simply fall down at his feet. The one problem? His tendency to become so mesmerized by his own visage on the Jumbotron, allowing opponents to merely skate around him and continue unharmed.

Verne Troyer - Someone with Troyer's size would seem an odd fit for a hockey team. Still, when the Flyers signed Briere, Pittsburgh faced the conundrum that any of their fully grown players attempting to check the tiny center would likely be whistled for elbowing. The solution? Sign someone tiny yet still bigger than Briere to keep him in check. So far Troyer has delivered - the occasional drunken bathroom incidents were just an extra unforeseen bonus.

Bubbles the Chimp - Signed as an unrestricted free agent this past July, Bubbles has proven to be an effective defenseman for the Penguins so far. With 20 goals on the year already there have been murmurs that he could unseat the former offensively minded defenseman, Gonchar, from his top defensive slot. The only thing holding Bubbles back now is a tendency to climb the netting around the rink and an inability to climb back down on his own. Still, the Pens have high hopes for their simian long as no one mentions his previous employer, that is.

Mario Lemieux - Oh, you thought he was retired? No, no, Mario is still kicking right along, albeit in a slightly more subdued role. His primary responsibilities these days include tying Sid's skates and making sure Sid's teeth are brushed properly, among other things. Still, with Crosby out of the spotlight the sky is the limit for Mario and some have said he's next in line for the role of Max Talbot's dogwalker. Good luck to Mario!

Special thanks to Elly, Steph and Teka for their assistance in this completely nonsensical post.


Tyler said...

Let's Go Pens!!

The Merry Men will bring it together and deny that 4th win in a row.

geekintehpink said...

That was the most brilliant thing I have ever seen in my life. XD

Elly said...

Hardy har har. You jest, but just wait, we'll see who's laughing when Mario scores on a breakaway in the second tonight.

(Also, I'm very sad that there was no geriatric beagle mention! Saving that for the Islanders, eh?)

Elly said...

Scratch that, did I say second? I meant first, first shift. Lemieux never waited to make his presence known.

Also, the 'impending explosion' part of Pam Anderson's one made me laugh enough to scare the pets. Nice. :)

Okay, I'm done with spamming your comments now.

Anonymous said...

I'm..... not saying anything.

Victor said...

Guess again, Tyler!

DS said...

I'll be the first to say congrats, CC. ;)

Are you packing for Disney World as we speak?