Thursday, May 01, 2008

So Much to Say

Whew. And we're back. I'll tell you, there's nothing like a heartbreaking first round loss to the Flyers followed by a soon-to-be heartbreaking second round loss to the same damn team to almost make a girl lose her mojo, scrap it all and take up the NBA. 'bout those Wizards, huh? Huh?

Okay, no. I have no idea what's going on with the Wiz these days and honestly I couldn't care less, despite my desire to just turn the lights off on this hockey season and hide away until September. It hasn't gotten bad enough for me to turn to basketball, not yet at least; and I'm guessing since Dan Steinberg is still blogging furiously, the Wizards are still alive.

Bully for them.

Don't get me wrong - there is a lot to celebrate right now. Take the fact that the Caps weren't even supposed to make the postseason in the first place and yet ended up winning their division. Take the fact that they clawed their way back from a 3-1 series deficit and made it all the way to overtime in game 7 before succumbing to the Flyers. Take the fact that Ovechkin, Backstrom and Boudreau all find themselves up for major NHL awards - all of which are deserved.

Take the fact that waiting in the wings of an already young, talented club are young, talented prospects with names like Karl Alzner, Sami Lepisto, Andrew Gordon, Mathieu Perreault, and Semen Varlamov.

Yes, there is a lot of good in the world for Caps fans, and I, like all of you, would do well to remember that. Because as we sit on the verge of a potential Flyers-Penguins Conference's sometimes hard to believe there is any good in the world at all.

Despite the pain, there is still hockey going on - and some pretty exciting hockey for that matter. Sure, all four series are flying by and we could be seeing one of the shortest second rounds in recent memory. But don't let that fool you, none of these series (save for the Wings-Avs series, which admittedly I haven't watched much of) have been easy. There have been a lot of one-goal games, a lot of overtimes, a lot of clanking posts and reviewed goals and nail-biting final seconds. It's been a hard fought second round, as it should be.

Hey, if the Avs and Rangers remember how to play hockey for one night we've got ourselves a foursome of 3-1 series heading down the stretch. And doesn't the time seem ripe for a team to pull off the oh so rare feat of being down by that margin...and coming back to win it all? The way this postseason is going, it's not out of the realm of possibility.

Some thoughts so far:
- Montreal's problem isn't their goaltending or their lack of discipline at inopportune times or their inability to create traffic in front of's all three. If that sounds eerily familiar to you, you're not alone.

- Every time Daniel Briere sneaks in from behind the net to score a goal a baby cries. Would someone just put a big bell around his neck already?

- The Rangers with Sean Avery have proved to be a tough if not quite tough enough foe for the Penguins. Without him? Tee time's at 8:30 tomorrow morning, boys.

- Marty Turco has worn the "choker" moniker, rather unfairly, for years now. Guess what - he's mad as hell and he's not going to take it anymore. He's the Cheap Seats favorite among all goalies named Marty, that's for sure.

- Is Colorado still playing?

- Steve Begin blocked a shot with his midsection last night and when he got to his feet and hobbled to the dressing room., he was booed. You stay classy, Philadelphia.

- Two games in a row now Patrick Marleau has picked off a cross-ice pass from Sergei Zubov, taken it down ice and scored a shorthanded goal. The Stars may be an infinitely better team with Zubov in the lineup, but I think everyone would agree he needs to stop trying that pass.

- Say what you want, but no coach does the wry "are you kidding me??" smile better than Guy Carbonneau.

- Where have you gone, Joe...Thornton?

- The Pens have the potential to do something no team has done in almost twenty years, and that is sweep the first two rounds. My question for you is this - since they came against a weak Senators team and an elderly Rangers team, does that make them more or less ready to face whoever survives the Habs-Flyers series?

- Speaking of which - irony comes in many shapes and colors, but right now it's wearing a hideous black and orange jersey. You have to think that after essentially throwing the last game of the year to draw the Sens in the first round over Philly, the last thing the Pens want to do is face the juggernaut Flyers in the Conference Finals. Should that happen...I will laugh.

Through my tears, of course.


Chris & Sarah said...

From the few games that the league so graciously allowed the nation to watch during the Cindy love fest, several were Pens-Flyers match-ups. Each one showed a Philly team that dominated through the physical play, and caused the Pens to lose control, take stooooooopid penalties, and essentially hand wins to the MSM and the Flyers power play.

So to answer your question - Sure I think the first two rounds gave the Pens all of the prep they needed to meet Briere, and the Orange Crush face to waist.

Oh, and I still believe in the Easter Bunny and Sata Clause too.

Tyler said...

"Should that happen...I will laugh.

Through my tears, of course."

That makes 2 of us....

Teka said...

At least you'll be laughing. I'll probably be stretched out on my floor throwing the biggest damn tantrum I can.

It's not so much that I don't have faith in the Pens' ability to beat the Flyers, because I really REALLY do with the way they've been playing of late. No, my issue is that with the game the Flyers play, I'm worried the Pens might not be in any shape PHYSICALLY to go on and play the final. Sure, they're young and they heal fast, but there's only so much Steve Downie one person can take. If the Pens make it and then fall to some silly other team due to sheer number of injuries, I'm going to cry. I'm going to cry so hard I'll flood D.C. and get you out of work for a day.

Kim said...

The only thing that has been getting me through the Habs/Flyers series is that from what I see the Flyers have the better shot at beating the Pens. And, I think the fact that the Pens have not been seriously challenged will come back to bite them. Karma baby. You avoid the Flyers in the first round and what is your prize? A Flyers team in the Conference finals that had the nerve to beat both the Caps and the Habs. Do they really think the Flyers will not hesitate to pick on Mama's favorite?

My only worry is that there is this wildcard of the refs looming. Want to guess which team I think will benefit from the officiating in a Pens/Flyers series? Oh the tears are falling here too.

What is up with the Rangers? I am glad Jagr is making sure we do not have to pay him next year, but hello Mr. Drury Mr. Gomez, Mr. Shanahan anyone home????

I have no choice but to root for Detroit in the West. Just have to hope those guys have what it takes to beat either of the teams in the East that come from a state that begins with a P.

harrison said...

Agree all around with Kim.

CC your Habbies keep sucking me in and dashing my hopes. Tonight...I need to stick all of the pins in my Koharski voodoo doll. Jeez, he sucks!

usually frustrated caps fan said...

To Chris & Sarah: You apparently believe in a lot of things but not spell checking posts, eh?

To Tyler: The Pens and Sidney/Cindy need to get past the Rangers first though I expect that will happen today.

To teka: I usually agree with your posts but taking issue with the Flyers style of play at this point, I can't agree with. While I grew up in the City of Brotherly Love and a fan of the original Broad Street Bullies teams of the '70s and will acknowledge the 2007-2008 Flyers as a physical team, they aren't winning by any sort of dirty play - they are winning on balanced offense and relentless forechecking and backchecking. Also the big difference in the Flyers-Habs series was the contrast between Martin Biron and "that Price kid". Carey Price will lead the Canadeans to a Cup someday but I don't think it will be before he turns 23 or 24. Until then - LETS GO CAPS!!!!!

Chris & Sarah said...

Happy B-Day CC from both of us. Hope things go better today than watching the Habs take it on the chin.

John said...

Hey, don't forget a shout-out to the Stingrays! They're off to their ECHL Conference Finals. That's not too bad, right?