Thoughts from Section 209: Devils vs Penguins: 12/30/2009

Wow…. the last recap of 2009….(and sadly the end of the “REALLY??? …. in 2009???” comeback…. *sigh* we’ll miss you, but not the jean shorts that inspired them…..)….and what better way to end a decade, then a game like THIS??? Playoff crowd, semi-playoff atmosphere….playoff intensity on the ice… damn it gets ya excited for April doesn’t it??? And oh yeah.. ANOTHER SHUTOUT for those smug douche Pitt announcers to call right… ahhh it’s all good!!!!!

the Good:
— Before I start here (and yes this counts as good)… my friend Rob runs a charity hockey tournament in Woodbridge, NJ.. usually about every six months… and game 1 was today (my team won, and yes this is half the reason I am mentioning it)… and it is a good cause… so if you’re not doing anything tomorrow about 12:30… stop by… heckle… boo… cheer… just DONATE and do whatever the hell ya want… there’s a chance our little Winter Classic, may have some SNOW late in the 3rd Period http://www.fordscup.com/ has all the information…. come see me chase the all-time wins record (and try to lower the lowest GAA in the event’s history.. and pad my goalie scoring stats!)
— NO ANDREW PETERS!!! Instead of skating laps he should be made to tie jerseys down until his hands bleed!!!!! At least he admitted his own idiocy tonight!!!
— it’s funny, Jacques Lemaire bags on Nick Bergfors… and when he does, the fan base FREAKS OUT in fear that Lemaire is gonna “Brent Sutter” the kid… and well NO… there’s no exercise bikes involved, and Lemaire has the faith in his teachings to LET his rookies get REAL ICE TIME… and you know.. he like does that thing called COACHING and GETS THE MOST FROM HIS PLAYERS… and every time he bags on Bergofrs, the kid ANSWERS AND PERFORMS… so again, get off Jacques’ nuts… he shits more about hockey then you know in your little life!! (and 20 minutes of ice time, and he was awesome with Zajac and Parise)
— mb30.. holy shit were you GOOD tonight…. as the game got going more… SO DID YOU… and I bag on you… but this one was most credit worthy (and so was the slash at Rupp’s ankles!!), I just hope this playoff-like effort shows up for a long playoff run, one more time… (please… I might even use your name again!)
— ONE minor penalty taken and it was at the end of the game… that’s a good thing and discipline is HUGE when you play a team that can kill you on the pp like they can (I don’t care what their stats are I do NOT want to be the team that wakes them up and fixes them!)
— Oh Roderick Pelley… how we have a love/hate with you (and ok it’s hilarious to bag on Rob who hates him because he has Sesitito-envy)…. I was going to comment on him tonight… but our Lordship of Krang NAILED this one… so I let her speak:
Poor Pelley… i know he sucks, but he tries so hard and his heart is in the right place. AND he know how to dress himself! Zharky and Clarky have to go SOMEWHERE, and do you want Pelley and Pandolfo on the ice at the same time? hey, i say just enjoy the amusement from the line. Pelley gets a little more practice at center (and with some good players to support him), and it’s not like that’ll be a line for very long anyway! we may never see it again, in fact! (we kinda put this in the GOOD section so he doesn’t GET PIST at us and board us!)

the Bad:
— well I gotta say it… no matter how retarded good Brent Johnson was (and he WAS tonight)…. you HAVE to get more then one fluke goal past him in the game… that’s a kinda worrisome sight….
— Patrik Elias… is he hurt??? He seems slow out there…. is something else wrong?? He DID get 17 minutes tonight… but no shots and he just looked slow and kinda dead out there… something to be worried about… Elias and Rolston are gonna be needed to take the scoring pressure off the top line when the big Silver Cup Tournament begins in April….
— the power play stunk and ANOTHER 5 on 3 was wasted (you know the league knows your pp sucks when they put Cyndy Crosby in the damn box to put you up 5 on 3 and let the Golden Brat cry in the box for 2:00)
— *sigh* Clarkson got hurt again dammit…..Devils right wing David Clarkson reinjured his fractured right leg in tonight’s 2-0 over Pittsburgh and did not accompany the team to Chicago for Thursday’s game, a source said. Instead, Clarkson is to have his leg examined again by team doctors Thursday in New Jersey. Tonight’s game was just his second game back after missing 13 contests with a fractured right fibula. He was injured initially when he blocked a shot by Boston’s Zdeno Chara on Nov. 27.

the Funny:
— Well I had a unique group with me tonight… her Lordship as she does for all Wednesday Games….. Returning again “cover your eyes so Bergfors and Parise can score” aka Tasha (and man it was fun to yell all game long… GO TO THE BATHROOM, we need a Bergfors goal… yes I know he scored tonight… but someone was stuck on the escalator and never saw the puck hit the net… hell I had the row behind her cheering for it :)… and my 3rd… one of the people who’s known me the longest…holy shit was there in 1995 when the old CRASHER Line took off…. yeup… ex-fiancee #2 (and to be honest each and every one of you over her a debt of gratitude for getting me the HELL away from the first one :p)… and again she deserves credit…for an opposing team fan she got NO SHIT from the section….I guess a little coach purse incident kinda squashed that…..but still it’s kinda odd to hear the Beyonce song “single girls”… when you’re sitting with a girl you DID put a ring on it with :p
— Now for a little facebook, stream of conscious conversation……
** Me: Clarkaround sighting!!!
** Kristyn Holleran: how many times has the Clarkaround actually worked lol
** Me: How many goals does Clarkson have? Divide by two for toe-drags!
** Kristyn Holleran: i really dislike mike rupp
** Me: I like rupp, now that he’s in the other jersey!
** Chris McCabe: I like Rupp simply because he can score a hat trick against the Rangers….
** Kristyn Holleran: i’m just bitter than he was useless with us and is now 4th in the NHLfor shot % lol
** Me: Playing with 87 and 71 will do that :p
** Barry Meikle: Of course by useless you mean, scored the 2003 Cup winning goal. Good enough for me.
** Me: Dude if ya wanna be a one game wonder
THAT was the game of choice!
— and I’d be a fool to leave out Pete serenading Clutch to some creepy kinda love song (and even his voice failed him in the try), and not to mention the near-riot cause Pete stepped on a $900 coach-bag (allegedly)… one thing I learned this year… if you’re dumb and whipped enough to buy a girl THAT kinda stupid expensive gift… well then you better be all ready to pump yer fist and go all Guido Beach to defend that bag (really, you coulda had season tickets for THAT much)… but really… treat it like an autographed jersey of your favorite player… DON’T bring it to the hockey game… really, you’re just asking for some idiot to spill beer on it (and then you get stuck in the middle of the fight… and oi vey… whatta mess!!)

Man it was a good, but scattered night… and one more time… CLOSE YOUR EYES TASHA WE NEED A GOAL!!! (some people are just NOT team players I tell ya :p)… fun times… fun times… Everyone have a GREAT and smart New Year!! Back at you with a month in Review probably on Saturday!!!!

YES! THERE’S ONE LEFT IN US AFTER ALL!

Ladies and gentlemen, the final goal of the Devils 2008-09 regular season was scored by none other than Mr. Dainius Zubrus.  You know what that means.

We’re up to 28 now.  Get your 28th Goal As A Devil ZubbieCounterContest Zubmissions in now!  zubbiecounter at gmail dot com will be the e-mail address; you have until the very second the puck drops for game 1 of the playoffs, either Wednesday or Thursday.  Let’s end this contest with a bang, shall we?

Devils @ Atlanta LIVECAP

9:44 PM: Brent Sutter: “Ankle sprain. He’ll be fine.” Uhhhhhh…yeah. Kay. Thanks, Brent, you’ve been quite informative.

9:41 PM: Alright, so no word on Rolston yet. If they say anything that actually means anything, I’ll post it up here. I’m expecting “lower body injury” (or possibly “head cold”) with no actual idea as to how long he’ll be out. If it’s different, I’ll let you know. If not, goodnight all!

9:24 PM: And, like the game itself, the first LiveCap of the season is in the books, it wasn’t pretty, but it happened. I’ll stick around a bit longer to see if we get an update on Rolston’s condition, but I’m not holding my breath…

9:22 PM: GAME! 1-0 Devils. It wasn’t pretty, the offensive production still sucks, the power play still sucks, but it’s a win nonetheless. Marty’s now 10 wins from tying Patrick Roy for most all-time by a goalie (11 from breaking the record), and six shutouts away from tying Terry Sawchuk for most shutouts of all-time., seven from breaking the record.

9:22 PM: BEAUTIFUL defensive play by Martin to prevent a shot on goal on the rush. Twenty seconds to go.

9:21 PM: Empty Thrasher net.

9:17 PM: Ice is tilting Atlanta’s way with two minutes to go. Meep.

9:15 PM: ANOTHER two-on-one featuring Jay Pandolfo, another non-shot-on-goal. At least no one crashed in a heap into the boards this time, though, so, y’know, take what we can get, yes?

9:13 PM: No updates on Rolston (what, you expected the Devils would reveal anything ever at any time?), but the replay reminds me a little Sidney Crosby’s crash into the boards last year that resulted in his high ankle sprain. Let’s hope that’s not the case here…

9:12 PM: Still 1-0, seven minutes to go in the game. Zubrus is now centering Elias and Gionta, so I guess the great line shake-up of the second period has ended. The 32 fans in attendance are chanting! It sounds impressive for 32 people.

9:09 PM: Rolston hit the boards after losing an edge, Chico says he needed help getting into the locker room because he couldn’t put much weight on his foot. Me no likey.

9:07 PM:Elias and Rolston two-on-one gets broken up, and after the play, Rolston is down and looks to be hurting…crap. Just…crap.

9:05 PM: Shorthanded two-on-one for Madden and Pando, Madden passes, and Pando fires it directly into Lehtonen’s pads. Another two-on-one, Elias and Pando, again nothing doing. But it’s chances, at least! …right?

9:04 PM: Atlanta’s on a power play and I have no idea why. Either I wasn’t paying attention or MSG didn’t think it was important to tell me. Neither would be surprising. Atlanta hits the pipe on the power play.

9:01 PM:Penalty kill’t. Big save by Marty (and then again possibly by Salvador’s backside) at the end of the Thrasher power play. Our power play may be awful, but at least the penalty kill’s holding up it’s end of the bargain…

8:58 PM: Paul Martin going off for a holding-the-stick penalty, Thrashers to the PP again.

8:55 PM: Marty with a save on Bogosian. Come to think of it, has Bogo scored yet in his pro career? Marty seems to like giving up first career goals…

8:52 PM: Third period’s on, goal credited to Rolston after all. Zubrus and Gionta on the assists.

8:35 PM: And that’s the end of period #2, 1-0 Devils. 20 shots on goal (I still refuse to believe that). Third period coming up soonish.

8:33 PM: The official announcement at the arena is giving the goal to Langenbrunner from Rolston and Zubrus. Lehtonen with a huge glove save on Elias keeps it a one-goal game.

8:31 PM: FINALLY! Rolston, let off the point at the power play, forces his way in front of the net and jams home his own rebound. Devils lead 1-0, Rolston notches his first of his second Devils go-round, and the Devils power play finally picks up another goal. Alllll right.

8:30 PM: Exelby takes the roughing penalty for his tackle of Langenbrunner, the ever-dangerous Devil power play takes the ice.

8:27 PM: Now it’s Rolston, Langenbrunner, and Zubrus. And hey, even a little scrummy-ness involving the Cap’n and Garnet Excelby. The most life I’ve seen tonight. The 32 fans in attendance even seemed to wake up.

8:26 PM: Rupp/Zajac/Parise? Really?

8:24 PM: Cangelosi just said the shots for the second are 13-5 Devils. I refuse to believe this. There is no way I’ve seen thirteen Devil shots on the night, let alone this period.

8:19 PM: Clarkson wraparound try! Gasp and shock, it’s not even close.

8:15 PM: Zubrus charging in on a three-on-one, opts to shoot…and misses the net entirely. Blast.

8:13 PM: I wonder how we managed to win two games so far this year considering I can’t recall ever actually scoring any goals…

8:06 PM: Hey hey, something interesting! Brodeur with a stop on the big blast by White (not Colin, Todd), leaves a huge rebound and manages to get in front of the follow-up shot as well. Stellar stop by Marty. The 32 fans in the building agree.

8:04 PM: I think Sutter’s futzing with the lines again. Clarkson was just out there with Holik and Rupp. Zubrus is centering Rolston and Elias at the moment as well.

8:01 PM: God, Lehtonen is leaving some juicy rebounds. However, in shades of last year, the Devils can’t do a damn thing about it. Penalty’s over, though. Devils have killed three of three of ’em tonight now.

8:00 PM: Okay, second period on, Devils still on the PK. A little bit more…something, this period? Anything? Please?

7:42 PM: Aaaaand that be the end of a very boring first period, scoreless after one. See you in seventeen for what can only be a more interesting second. I hope.

7:39 PM: Welp, least they killed that one. Holik gets booed by the 32 Atlanta fans in attendance tonight. Yet another Devils penalty coming up, Zajac for hooking. Less than a minute to go in the period.

7:36 PM: See, this is why I miss Doc. Cangelosi lied to me, it’s actually Atlanta on the power play, not so much the Devils.

7:34 PM: And just as one penalty expires, and new one commences. The Devils get their turn on the power play, again. So in two minutes, the score will still be zero-zero, again.

7:31 PM: And so Colin White goes off for interference. This game is rather boring. Sorry. Last year’s early-season game in Atlanta was all kinds of crazy. I miss that game. A little.

7:26 PM: Even Chico’s mentioning how few fans are in the building. And is also touting the Thrashers “Buy a ticket, eat all you want for free” sections deal. Chico Eats: HOTlanta Edition!

7:23 PM: How they managed to not get it in, I don’t have the slightest. Good pressure again, but once again, nothing doing as far as scoring. Devils PP is now 0-for-2 on the evening, and 1-for-13 on the year. Ouch.

7:22 PM: I say it every time the Devils play Atlanta, but DAMN the Thrashers have ugly jerseys.

7:20 PM: ‘nother penalty on the Thrashers, this one interference on David Clarkson. Don’t the Thrashers know they don’t have to interfere with David Clarkson, that he’s perfectly capable of stopping his own progress? Regardless, Devils PP again.

7:17 PM: You know, as a Devils fan, I should be used to empty arenas…and yet, I keep finding myself strangely drawn to the swaths of empty seats whenever the camera catches the stands. It’s almost hypnotizing.

7:15 PM: A nice chance in front for Pandolfo, who sends a backhander at the Atlanta goal with the speed of a honey-soaked tortoise. Sigh.

7:13 PM: Surprisingly strong on the puck deep in the zone, but Atlanta manages to clear each time. We’re not looking stellar tonight boys.

7:11 PM: Schneider with a puck-over-the-glass deal and the vaunted (ha!) Devils power play hits the ice. Oh boy oh boy.

7:09 PM: Puck’s on the ice in Atlanta. You wouldn’t know it from the crowd though. My goodness, and they say we don’t draw in Jersey. Hot damn.

7:01 PM: Oh dammit. First LiveCap of the year, and Doc’s sick. Sigh. Get well Doc. Other Devils news for tonight: Salmela’s hanging out in the press box tonight, and Andy Greene gets into his first game of the year. He’ll be paired with Johnny Oduya.

6:45 PM: What’s that coming over the hill? It it a LiveCap? It it a LiveCap? Ahhh musical references no one will get…see you in 15!

Game 1? Awesome

Before I begin, I’d like to apologize for the lack of pictures in this post. I have them up and ready to go, but I seem to be having a problem with getting them posted. I’ll try to have this problem rectified as soon as possible. – Josh
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So it’s in the books, the Devils open the 2008-09 season with a 2-1 victory over the Islanders. It wasn’t all pretty, but it wasn’t all bad either. So, I present to you, loyal 2MA reader…THE AWESOME, THE NOT-SO-AWESOME, AND THE DOWNRIGHT RIDICULOUS of the Devils’ season opener as I saw from my perch in 114:

THE AWESOME – No more Zombie Nation!

I’m not going to lie – I’m conflicted with this awesomeness. After Gary Glitter’s arrest and persecution, I was perfectly fine with the Devils’ choice to stop using Rock And Roll Pt 2 as their goal song. When they used Ole! by Bouncing Souls two years ago, even better – awesome band, awesome song. But last year’s song, Kernkraft 440 by Zombie Nation, just sucked.

So, I guess the annoyance with last year’s song trumps the distaste of the performer of the new/old song. And in the end, Glitter’s paid his debt to society, so maybe it is alright after all to be using his song again.

It’s still better than Zombie Nation.


THE NOT-SO-AWESOME – HE’S NOT WEARING A MASK!

I was in the middle of a conversation with a friend about hockey rules when Marty was run into by Paul Martin and lost his mask. I know hockey’s a fast sport, and sometimes things happen faster on the ice than we notice them on television or in the stands, but can someone please explain to me why someone was allowed to fire a shot even in the general direction of a mask-less goalie before a whistle was blown? Pucks have been frozen by overzealous referees in less time than it took for play to be blown dead after Marty lost his mask.

Brodeur is on track to shatter records left and right. This should be a huge deal for the NHL. A slow whistle by the referee could have easily ended any chance Brodeur has at taking his place in the record book – and ultimately raising the NHL’s profile on non-hockey friendly outlets such as ESPN. There are some things that are just too dangerous to mess around with, and a mask-less goalie is one of them. Any time a goalie loses his mask, play needs to be whistled dead immediately. Period.


THE DOWNRIGHT RIDICULOUS – Green men and dancing guy strippers…wait, I’m at a Devils game?

Look, I know the Devils get a bad rap over their marketing and fan relations and in-game entertainment. Usually I’m one of the ones complaining the most. But if this is what’s in store for this year, I recant all of my prior complaints. Just don’t make me watch these people anymore.

First is the guy with the multiple shirts. He does some kind of strange dancing stripping routine that was funny at first – especially when he stopped a guy who clearly didn’t want to have anything to do with him. But the next five or six times? Not so much. The enthusiasm is nice. The shirt-removing routine grows old really fast.

The green guy was less obnoxious, but far more difficult to understand. My friend tells me it’s a reference to It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, which is probably more correct than my guess – an overzealous fan of Andy Greene. Whatever it is, I’m reasonably certain green guy was not wearing underwear beneath his frighteningly form-fitting costume. And I really didn’t need to see that.