James Day Preview PLAYOFF EDITION: James 2, Sens at Habs

Game 2

Where else can one start other than…

No Matter How You Look At it, Away From the Play, PK Subban Delivered a Malicious Two Handed Slash to Mark Stone’s Fucking Wrist
OR
GottaHearBothSidesGate

Whether you’re a man or a woman or who knows what spice, there comes a time in every man’s life when she/he/zhe has to man up and BE A MAN. Part of being a man, is shrugging off a two handed hack to your bare wrist like nothing happened. You do it every day at your job. I do it every day here at the body painting studio I intern at. In a man’s (man’s man’s) world, there’s no place for any of this writhing in pain, “waah, waah my wrist has been fractured I am going to miss a large portion of the game because I’m ACTING” type acting. Now, a key part of acting is voluntarily leaving one of the most important games of your career for extended periods of time to fool the referees and opposition into THINKING you’re hurt. Now that Mark Stone might miss time or the rest of this series? Well, from the mouth of an expert:

“The plan worked. We’ve got them right where we want them now that Mark Stone may not be able to play well or at all.”
                                                                   – James Lipton, Inside the Actor’s Studio

Look, this all boils down to one harsh reality: The HERstorical tradition that is Playoff Brand™ Hockey. Every spring when we don our visorless helmets and sit on our futons to eat chips and drink beer in front of a television, we bravely put ourselves at risk. We know what we’re getting into and the players do too. They should know that when you LACE “M” UP that you do so with the knowledge that your opponent can and will flagrantly break the rules of the game and maliciously try to injure you. IT’S CALLED THE PLAYOFFS. Why would we want to watch the sport at its best when we can see it at its ugliest? Let’s injure the best players out of the way so we can finally get more of that David Legwand vs. Brian Flynn battle that we the fans so crave.

So I’m with the HNIC garbage panel. Mark Stone shouldn’t have gotten his wrist in the way of that stick and let justice be done though the heavens fall in his upcoming disciplinary hearing for his FAKE CT scan at some EURO hospital. Stone’s shady history certainly will not do him any favours.

The fallout of this, of course, is that Chris Neil could draw into the line up should Stone be too high on painkillers to play. It’s no secret that many of our contributors at WTYKY don’t think Neil is the player he used to be. Frankly, he’s got his work cut out for him jumping back into the line up against a speedy team after missing about 8 weeks, and into playoff hockey no less. I will say this though, it’s not like I’m rooting against the guy. This is the kind of situation where Ottawa needs him to be the best damn Chris Neil he can be. Ye olde Chris Neil that actually drew penalties and chipped in the grimiest of goals. He needs to do the running around hitting and distracting so the rest of the team can focus. Playoffs are where he can be his best. With his future in Ottawa in question this could potentially be a bit of a swan song for him. Love him or hate him, he was built for playoff hockey.

Lazar-Pageau-Condra Line Continues To Buzz All Game Long…HEYYY You Know Who Else I’d Like to See Buzz All Game Long? THE OTHER LINES.

I mean, you gotta hear both sides when all three of Ottawa’s goals came from –Markov-  Michalek, Turris and Zibanejad but am I alone in thinking that if the top had 6 played near the level of 27-44-22 on Wednesday that the Sens would have totally smothered the Habs?
I love having enough depth at forward that our 3rd line is a secret weapon but ehhh, top six, not exactly a bunch of chuds either. It was encouraging to see the ALLEGEDLY perfectly healthy Bobby Ryan who cant seem to be able to shoot anymore because he’s ALLEGEDLY perfectly healthy, adjusting and using his size to get all up in Carey Prix’s world. In my opinion, despite finishing with no points, he was a huge part of both Turris’ and Zibanejad’s goals.

Speaking of Goals…There Were a Lot of Those Last Game
Glad to see the lack of hand wringing over Hammond finishing with an uncharacteristic loss in Game 1. He did not look tremendous on a couple of goals but overall didn’t really seem shaky considering he was playing in the fucking AHL a couple of months ago.
Behind the Scenes Story: On Wednesday after a nice save I looked over at Varada *holds for 10 minutes of applause* and said, “Can you believe we’re watching Andrew Hammond as the undisputed starter in a playoff series?…Also, are you going to finish the rest of that tall can?” What a wild ride this continues to be.
Epilogue: He indeed finished the tall can.
Truth be told, Carey Price let in the biggest stinker of the game and it’s not as if he suddenly stinks (though that would be incredibly handy like it was in 2013). I think Hammond will also be fine. If he can play even just a bit a bit better I’m confident the Sens can outscore these schlubs. It was a fucked up game and I expect game 2 to be a clean slate for both of these goalies.

Overall, I think Ottawa could have played quite a bit better against a Paccioretty and Subban-free Canadiens. I can remember about 5 incomplete passes that could have put the game away pretty early had they connected. Hopefully the jitters are out of the system because if that’s what Montreal looks like in a win, this could be an interesting series.

Let’s get the tinfoil on under the wrist guards and split this fucker.

GO SENS GO! 

Your Round 1 Playoff Preview: Being Concise is for Losers

"A burger appeared to me in a dream last night.", explains Carey Price as his teammates start to visibly lose interest.

“A burger appeared to me in a dream last night.”, explains Carey Price as his teammates start to visibly lose interest in the story.

There’s lots to say about what the Sens have achieved this season, and I plan on saying most of it later (hopefully much later), but if you will allow me a single moment of reflection, I’d like to start by talking about this:

At first glance, that stat might seem a little surprising. After all, the NHL has been around for quite a few years[citation needed] and 14 points is only 7 wins. #Actually, 14 points might as well be from here to Mars. 14 points was the difference between playoffs in the Western Conference and the 4th overall pick last year. 14 points is a +40 goal differential. 14 points isn’t what separates the contenders from the pretenders, it’s what separates the contenders from those who shouldn’t even bother. What’s really going to blow your mind is the fact that at the time the Senators were 14 points out of the playoffs, they were 19 points back of Pittsburgh WHO THEY EVENTUALLY PASSED. I could talk about this for hours, but I guess the takeaway is this: anything is possible when you don’t lose for two full months. Ask your doctor if winning is right for you.

By far the weirdest thing about this whole “improbable run to make the playoffs” thing is the knowledge that we’ve already seen the most absurd thing the Senators are going to do this year. Where can they possibly go from here? Come back from 0-3 down to win a series? Whatever, that’s already happened 4 times in NHL history. What if they win the Cup? No big deal, someone wins the Cup every year. It’s like opening a magic act by pulling a rabbit out of a hat you’ve sawed in half while unicycling across a tightrope blindfolded: no matter how impressive it is when you pull the seven of clubs out of a volunteer’s ear later in the show, its impact is going to be slightly reduced due to what preceded it. Like it or not, you’re being graded on a curve from the moment you stick that unicycle dismount as a flock of doves flies into the rafters.

With all that being said, I plan on enjoying the hell out of whatever’s next. The phrase “house money” gets thrown around a lot these days, but all that really means is that Sens fans no longer have any right to complain. And thank God for that! Frankly, complaining was the only thing we had going for us for a while.

So pour yourself a Talisker, put the needle on your favourite Steely Dan vinyl (It’s Aja. Self-explanatory.), and take a seat. I’m here to tell you everything you need to know. Some of what I’m about to tell you may veer dangerously close to “analysis”, but just hold my hand and we will get through this. Together.

In the (United in) Red Corner: The Ottawa Senators

It took about 60 games, two coaches, and some injuries that were not blessings in disguise so much as blessings in a broken pair of Groucho Marx novelty glasses, but the Ottawa Senators finally know who they are and what they are doing. To wit:

The Forwards

Clarke MacArthur and Kyle Turris have become such strong two-way 1st liners that it’s starting to raise serious questions about whether or not Randy Carlyle and Dave Tippet know what they’re talking about. But like I always say: one man’s entitled high draft pick is another man’s backbone of the team for years to come. (Related: I can haz Taylor Hall? Call me, Edmonton!) In other news, Mark Stone simply does whatever the hell he wants regardless of what the other team has to say about it.

It’s no secret that Mike Hoffman, Mika Zibanejad, Bobby Ryan, and Milan Michalek have been inconsistent this year. Lately Mike Hoffman’s been spending time exploring his dual nature as The Only Team-Leading Scorer Who Regularly Spends Time on the 4th Line™ and Emergency 2nd Line Nitrous Boost. Mika Zibanejad had two huge slumps at the beginning and the end of the year, but outside of the first and last 10 games of the season, Mika had 41 points in 61 games. Also he’s turning 22 on Saturday, so put down that mixing board and please buy DJ Z-BAD a goal for his birthday. If you can, also pick one up for Bobby Ryan who has scored on only 1 of his last 58 shots. This is a trend that I will generously describe as “outside Bobby’s established pattern of behaviour”. If he’d scored on a career average 12.9% of his shots this year instead of just 8.1%, he’d have 28 goals, 64 points, and we’d be talking about what a great Bobby Ryan Year Bobby Ryan just had instead of pondering how important having non-injured hands is to the act of shooting the puck. Sens fans to Bobby Ryan: There’s no “I” in “team”, but there’s a “U” in “slump”. Milan Michalek started slow but was really starting to cook before becoming the first player in NHL history to have an upper body injury in his knee. It looks like he’ll be back in time for Game 1, but who knows how long it will take him to get back to where he was. Basically as we go into this series, Ottawa’s second line is like a box of chocolates: they’re an unimaginative and lazy gift for people you don’t really care about that much. The good news is that even if the offense isn’t there, the 2nd line generally doesn’t get rolled possession-wise and can be trusted in all situations so it could be worse! *Hands out T-shirts with “The 2nd Line: Even when they’re bad they’re ok!” written on them*

Erik Condra, Jean-Gabriel Pageau, and Curtis Lazar have been the Sens’ best possession forwards for the past month. They are the greatest thing since cats’ pajamas made out of sliced bread. Fun bar game: between Condra, Pageau, and Lazar, which one do you want to adopt, which one do want your parents to adopt as your new brother, and which one do you want to time travel into the past to become your father while saving your mother from a homicidal robot? Discuss among yourselves. You’ll be there for hours. (Lazar son, Condra brother, Pageau dad btw.)

Zack Smith, David Legwand, and Alex Chiasson make up The All Disappointment Line. David Legwand wasn’t brought in to be a 4th liner, Alex Chiasson might not even be here after this summer, and Zack Smith’s new scruffy look can’t hold a candle to what Mike Hoffman’s got going on these days. However, if I may unsheathe this old #ACTUALLY that has been passed down in my family for generations, I’d like to make an observation: as much as Sens fans were expecting and hoping for more out of Legwand and Chiasson, 27 and 26 points is #ACTUALLY fairly decent production for a couple of 4th liners. Although Zack Smith may not have a long term spot on this team, he still looks like an NHL player, unlike some other Neils I could Greening. To recap: the Sens’ 4th line centre is the same guy who led the Red Wings in points last year, and not, for instance, Devante Smith-Pelly, Jacob De La Rose, or Brandon Prust. This ok with me. (More on that in a minute.)

The Defense

In terms of defense pairings Karlsson and Methot will drive the play, Gryba and Borowiecki will drive me to drink, and Ceci and Wiercioch will take care of the rest. Nothing new there. There have been rumblings on The Twitters that Erik Karlsson is playing hurt. Given that he hasn’t practiced in quite some time, I think it’s reasonable to assume that he’s a bit banged up, and by “banged up” I mean “still playing 30 minutes a night”. How hurt is he really? No idea1, but you gotta hear both sides. (Unlikely, given that playoff injury information is more closely guarded than nuclear launch codes.) On the other hand, the last time Ottawa played Montreal in the playoffs EK absolutely ran show against the Habs (5GP, 6P, +5) on one leg. This time around, I’m going to say Karlsson’s going to be in even better shape on account of not having had surgery in the past two months.

The Goaltending

Much could be made of Ottawa’s decision to continue to start rookie Andrew Hammond, but I can’t say I’m that worried about it. Hammond’s already been starting some big games over the past 2 months, and the pressure has formed him into a giant burger shaped diamond. Even if he finally crashes back to earth, the Sens will turn to Veteran Good Goaltender Craig Anderson, and that will be that. Also, Robin Lehner is a goaltending prospect with the Ottawa Senators organization.

Ok, enough about the Ottawa Senators. What about the team about which I don’t know what I’m talking?

Know Thine Enemy: The Montreal Canadiens

Hot take: Some of the players on the Montreal Canadiens are good. Max Pacioretty gets a lot of shots, a lot of goals, and a lot of points. P.K. Subban and Andrei Markov combined for 110 points this year. Brendan Gallagher put up 47 points this year, has been Montreal’s best possession forward since December, and he’s only 22. Tomas Plekanec looks like Bobby Bottleservice. Carey Price has been en fuego for the past two seasons, will certainly win the Vezina Trophy this year, and should probably win the Hart. I think Ottawa’s going to have their hands full with Montreal’s top 6 and the Subban-Markov pairing, just has been the case for everyone else all year.

Luckily, the rest of Montreal’s team borders on disappointing. Jeff Petry and Alexei Emelin have been getting crushed during 5-on-5 play. PA Parenteau and Devante Smith-Pelly were supposed to be the missing pieces that pushed the Habs over the top, but they can’t even touch David Legwand or Chris Neil numbers. Speaking of “David Legwand numbers”, guess what Lars Eller has! Dale Weise is tied for 4th on the team with a +/- of +21, but is rocking a cool 105.3% PDO and also looks like Ori from The Hobbit. Once you get past Montreal’s top 8 or 9 players, there’s a long list of guys that make you go “Oh, we can definitely beat THOSE guys”. Speaking of segues, did you know Sergei Gonchar is on Montreal now? If you hold your ear up to his contract, you can hear The Circle of Life playing.

In conclusion, the Habs, while not unformidable, are precisely two lines deep, and Max Pacioretty’s recent head injury will only further exacerbate that problem if he can’t fake a doctor’s note between now and puck drop. Division winner? More like DERISION winner!2

Pithy Observations of Questionable Importance

1. The Ottawa Senators have spent the 2nd least amount of time down 2 or more goals in this year.

2. Montreal’s had one of the better penalty kills since Paul Maclean was fired.

3. Brendan Gallagher and Dale Weise have the best penalty differential on the Montreal Canadiens which is SO ANNOYING BECAUSE I HATE THEM AND THEIR DUMB FACES.

4. Carey Price hasn’t been great against Ottawa recently.

5. Ottawa had 1093 PIMs in 2013-14, but only 841 PIMs in 2014-15. That’s four games worth of time Ottawa didn’t spend in the box this year.

The Wisdom

Ottawa’s depth is their biggest advantage in this series and there are lots of ways for Dave Cameron to exploit this fact. He could sacrifice Lazar-Condra-Pageau to the Habs’ top line to free up other matchups, or he could just roll 4 lines and dare Michel Therrien to try to keep up. Either way, I don’t expect Montreal to dominate play for long stretches of time.

The wild card here is, of course, Carey Price. Now I realize I just spent 1700 words to get to the revolutionary analysis of “goaltending is important”, but seriously: if Carey Price stands on his head, it won’t matter how bad Bryan Flynn is. In fact, that’s how we got here to begin with.

The good news is that even if Carey Price does Carey Price things, I don’t expect the Senators to panic. The one lesson they’ve learned over the past two months is that when they trust the system, good things happen. They’ve won every which way to get into the playoffs. They’ve won from 3 goals behind, they’ve won in a shootout from 4 goals ahead, they’ve gone on the road and played “perfect road games”, and they’ve blown out teams at home. They’ve seen it all, and I don’t expect them to panic just because someone tells them that now the games matter even more. Winning tends to instill confidence, and this is a good time of year to be confident.

And now A Serious Thing:

With the tragic passing of Mark Reeds today, life that happens off the ice (i.e. most of it) has been thrown into sharp relief. Over and over, Bryan Murray has talked about what a tight knit group of players the Senators are this year. It can’t be easy to process the loss of a person with whom you worked daily, a person who taught you to be better at your craft, a person who you’d seen and who’d encouraged you not 10 days ago, but goddamn if this doesn’t seem like the sort of group that’s just gonna go out there and play their hearts out for a guy that was clearly well-loved by everyone in the organization. I can’t emotionally handle more inspiring hashtags at this point, so just do the damn thing, Ottawa. #LetsWinItAll #DoItForBryan

Prediction: Sens in 6. Carey Price is a goalie, not a miracle worker. Get at me, haters!

1. Thx 4 reading.

2. If you would like to high five me, I will be posting up in the Rideau Centre from 1:30 to 3 PM this Saturday, April 18. Please contact the website for more details.

Totally surreal

Back when the season started, did anyone imagine in a million years the following image being something that appeared in reality?

Untitled

That’s the front page of the Ottawa Senators website. It features a picture of a 27 year old undrafted goaltender with terrible AHL numbers. That’s right: Andrew Hammond is now the central draw and face of a franchise for a team with a Norris winner and candidate again this year as its captain and a couple of Calder candidates tearing it up shift after shift.

It’s a surreal season, and not just for us. Ask LA Kings fans this morning how they feel. Ask Winnipeg fans, and Calgary fans, how they feel. Teams that aren’t supposed to win are winning, teams that are supposed to casually dominate are falling apart, and at the center of it all is a small market team with the lowest payroll in the league shutting out the Presidents Trophy winners to cap off one of the most unprecedented winning periods in decades.

For Boston, you have to wonder how widespread the changes will be if everything doesn’t go just their way over the next couple of days. It feels like Ottawa has been chasing them for months, winning and winning only to see Boston picking up just as many points. Finally, in the final days of the season, their time is running out. (Not to be morbid, but could we see the return of Peter Chiarelli to Ottawa?)

Seems like everything is coming together for Ottawa at just the right time, but it bears mentioning again that there are many factors to Ottawa’s success. Obviously there’s Hammond’s play, but also possession black holes Chris Phillips and Chris Neil haven’t played in weeks. Young players are being trusted with key minutes – how much money does that Lazar – Pageau – Condra line make compared to the Rangers line they matched up against last night? Patrick Wiercioch is finally out of the doghouse for being the kind of player everyone knows that he is.

And though it doesn’t seem to be talked about enough, Dave Cameron might be the second Jack Adams winning coach for Ottawa in the last two seasons. A team simply doesn’t turn around like this without at least a few votes going the coach’s way.

The incredible thing here is the real possibility that Ottawa could meet the Canadiens in the first round – a dream match up for this team. What seemed totally impossible only a couple of months ago – playoff success – is within reach.

Ottawa’s surreal, dreamlike season keeps getting dreamier.

Beat the fucking Flyers. Go Sens.

Ottawa Senators Off-Ice Power Rankings – April 2015

I’m not gonna lie to you, folks – the Senators’ social media was pretty thin gruel this month. Is it time to retire the power rankings? The paper-thin conceit upon which we’ve always relied is that when social media lets us observe our favorite Senators in their natural environments – the golf course, the boat show, the bottomless scampi basket – it lets us understand them more as hockey players, and maybe even understand ourselves in the process. But what happens when the players start turning the tap off? When tweets become less and less frequent, Instagram accounts go private, and the real action ends up being lost in the ether of Snapchat? Do I need to get a cellular telephone now?

I mean, are they on to us? On the ice, this past month was probably the most successful the Senators have ever had, and yet in the past, those sorts of good times usually translated into at least a few players tweeting blurry pictures involving a stretch Hummer, coconut Skyy, and a guy who looks suspiciously like Gordon Lightfoot. Not this month, though. Have we disrupted a delicate ecosystem by observing it too closely? Have we breached the Prime Directive? Does anyone remember laughter?

So is it time to shut this operation down? Convince me otherwise, guys. Convince me that there’s still some profligacy and a lack of self-awareness in the world, as long as we look closely enough. Convince me, one more time, that the only thing keeping us all from living our best lives . . . is us.

1) Erik Karlsson (last month: 1)

Why not enjoy the beautiful #lambo #huracan on this nice day.

A photo posted by Erik Karlsson (@erikkarlsson65) on



Whatever, that’s like, the cheap Lambo.

2) Partying with dogs (last month: NR)

Let’s dial down our expectations a little, maybe. We all have dogs. How have our favorite Senators recently been partying with dogs? Let’s find out.

8 great years with this hound, hopefully 8 more #apollo

A photo posted by Clarke (@cmacarthur16) on



Okay, this doesn’t look like much of a party, although in this guy’s defense, he does have a concussion (the man, not the dog). MacArthur is more excited than Apollo here, perhaps because he’s looking forward to his morning garbage can full of cereal in the background.

Also not much of a party, because it’s not clear Mike Hoffman’s bulldog is fully on-board with his particular brand of amorousness. It’s not exactly discomfort; it’s more of a perfunctory expression, like when you’re still mad about the fight over the credit card statement earlier but he’s making a big show of kissing you in front of everyone at the dinner party that you couldn’t cancel. Come on, Hoffman. Don’t put her on the spot like that, especially when you’re only moralizing about her Visa charges because you bought those new Callaways with cash. That’s right, she saw them, hidden in the garage behind the snow tires. So stop being such a jerk and just back off for a couple days.

Huge birthday shoutout goes out to Zeus. #TBT to DJing with your good friend @zibanejad93 last summer. #1

A video posted by Cody Ceci (@codyceci) on



Okay, it looks like this is as turnt as we’re going to get this month, and it still involves a large man tenderly kissing a small dog, in this case right after mastering the seamless “just turn everything off for three seconds” beatmatch. Forget it, let’s move on.

3) David Legwand (last month: NR)

Kickin it with Leggy on the bird. Thanks @monstercanada for the headphones! #dna

A photo posted by Mike Hoffman (@mhoffy68) on



Maybe we need to consider less usual suspects, so let’s consider David Legwand. David Legwand doesn’t participate in social media, probably because he’s old enough to remember polio. We can see how this decision sets him apart from Mike Hoffman, a man nine years his junior, in this Hoffman selfie – there’s no scarf, no product placement, no carefully styled hair . . . just a man, going about his business, probably reading Field and Stream.

It’s nice to find a throwback every now and then, isn’t it? To know that some people stay true to themselves rather than chase every little trend? Remember when K-cars were everywhere and ugly? The worst, right? But how awesome is it in 2015, the rare time you see a working K-car still on the road, its driver hanging a cigarette out the window in the middle of February? “I bet that guy parties,” you say. That K-car is David Legwand in this picture.

4) Andrew Hammond (last month: 6)

Hey, you can be 15-1-1, but that doesn’t mean the big sponsorships start rolling in right away. This tweet is great because it gives us an athlete who could not be more popular right now plugging a company that could not have less juice. It’s like seeing Harrison Ford shilling for invisible Japanese beer, or getting Erik Karlsson in your web commercial after you let him sit in your rented Lambo.

5) Bobby Ryan (last month: 5)

Yup, even the alleged swagger from our #1 this month turned out just to be product placement. Karlsson didn’t bother to hashtag the company, though. That’s juice. Less juice? When you make $7M a year but have to hang around an H&R Block in full gear hugging strangers, and Lazar still comes off more likeable than you, because of course he does. How many takes do you think they filmed for this commercial? Two?

6) Kyle Turris (last month: NR)

Karlsson and Ryan’s cheesy commercials remind us how low-budget, how milk-and-water, how ordinary the Senators were this month. So hang on, because now we’re entering the “Stars: They’re More or Less Similar to Us!” chunk of these rankings.

turrisHere’s the Senators’ #1 centre in his role as celebrity pitchman for his city’s fancy new department store. Pretty cool, right? Sure, until he starts making clarifying remarks about NCC road closures. How Ottawa is that?

7) Patrick Wiercioch (last month: NR)

Then there’s his buddy Patrick, making his first tweet in seven months, but only because he lost his wife in that same department store. Patrick! It happens! Maybe do some browsing while you’re there? Maybe buy some slim-leg trousers that don’t look like you could use the cuffs to sail a Bermuda-rigged sloop?

8) Cody Ceci (last month: NR)

hat

Okay, this guy wins.

9) Following the rules (last month: NR)

Fine, I can accept that the Senators clearly didn’t do anything exciting last month, but at least they won the games, right? And at least they didn’t lecture us about how we were celebrating those victories inappropriately, right? Wait, they did? Well that tears it.

Look, burger-throwing is silly, but it’s a relatively harmless and definitely short-term bit of fun, not to mention one of the only Senators fan rituals I can think of that actually developed organically following a variety of ham-fisted attempts by the team. The same team, by the way, that was more than happy to promote said burger-throwing by playing up some now-iconic moments. But then somebody pointed out that some moron also threw a Filet-O-Fish, and everyone agreed that was gross, so all the fun had to stop immediately. You know how the conversation went, too:

“The fans are going to think we’re typical, no-fun Ottawa if we tell them to stop throwing burgers. How do we sell this?”

“Get Karlsson to do a video. He’s cool.”

“You’re right, he took some pictures in a rented Lambo the other day. Good idea. But who does the French?”

“Chiasson?”

“Can’t, he’s serving a double-minor for high-sticking right now.”

” . . . it’s 10:15 in the morning.”

“Weird, right?”

“Okay, Pageau?”

“Who?”

“Ah, let’s just get Methot.”

“Perfect, those guys have great chemistry. I’m sure neither will look completely embarrassed telling fans how to celebrate responsibly now that the team’s finally put together a few wins after underachieving for most of the year. Alright, margaritas?”

“Again, 10:15 in the morning.”

10) Mark Stone (last month: NR)

Is Mark Stone in a state of urinary urgency the appropriate note to end on? Sure, what the hell – see you next month! Maybe.

NOT RANKED: Eugene Melnyk; when knitting looks more realistic than your bobblehead; #wood.