Live From The Dumpster Behind This Domino’s Pizza Where I Just Relieved Myself In A Very Serious Way…THIS…Is Your (well technically “My” no, that seems selfish…how about, “Our”…yeah we’ll settle for “Our”, yes, I like Our) OUR James Day Preview!
Okay, so, recapping Tuesday’s game preview, I believe I said something along the lines of “the Senators really fucking need to win this game.” Hey, weird news everyone, they did not win at all. Nope, not at all. The Sens will be, I think its safe to say, desperately looking for a very important and elusive non-loss for the home crowd.
So a pretty uneventful game tonight, just trudging along that mid-season grind… *Takes huge pull off of a plastic bag half full of furniture polish* Ahhhhh. Okay, back on track! THIIIIIIIINGS AAAARE HAPPENNNNNINNNNG!!!! Big Gaaaame tonight!!!
Oh you didn’t think I was going to talk about Chris Phillips 1,000th game? Well you’re WRO-OOONG! I am briefly going to discuss it.
It was a heady day that June 22, 1996. All kinds of stuff was going on… President Bill Clinton called for a National Sex Offender Registry, Egyptian director Salah Abou Seif died, Saurav Ganguly scored 131 at Lord’s on his Test cricket debut (though I don’t think I need to remind you of THAT for the millionth time) and Christopher Dartelvin Phillips was taken #1 overall in the NHL entry draft. Twas a draft class that reminds me that the Senators should not invest tooooo deeply in building through the draft. There were some real collar tuggers in that first round including Alexandre Volchov (the ORIGINAL Nikita Filatov), best known for 1.Demanding his COACH call him “The Volchinator” 2.Having such a bad attitude that he played 3 games in his entire NHL career despite having the talent to be taken fourth overall 3.Walking out on his AHL Portland teammates in the middle of a playoff game. That’s not to say Phillips wasn’t a great choice at number one. Very good choice. Just saying, it’s a little more consistent these days but that draft, man…some years it’s the Jeff Skinner of times and other years it’s the Magnus Paajarvi-Svenson of times.
Either way, Big Rig has been there for the Sens as resident team dad and hangdog expression-haver for well over a decade now. As a defensive defenseman, Phillips has been a bit of an unsung guy over the years. I have always said that Chris Phillips must be watched in person to be truly appreciated. His skill set does not often make the sports centre roundup (if he wanted that he should have specialized in ‘being speculation about Toronto’s trade deadline plans’) but any longtime Sens fan knows Big Game Chris has been a strong steadying presence on the back end for what is starting to feel like a generation. Of course, I think it’s fair to admit that I don’t think Phillips has been the same since Anton Volchenkov (THE OTHER VOLCHINATOR) set sail for New Jersey and that there is a looot of term that I’m not crazy about on that new contract of his..but…you know what? Tonight’s Phillips big night and I think he was Ottawa’s best player against St. Louis and here’s hoping he has a similar hop tonight…his special night!
Yep Philips’ special night…except of course for…
Mike Fisher’s heroic jaw making its return to Scotiabank Place for the first time since his trade last February. Crowd’s going to be standing ovationed out! I for one, am pretty happy for Fish AND the Sens at this point. He was the type of heart and soul player that I will always love for Ottawa but in the rebuild process, he was also the perfect type of player for the organization to part ways with if they wanted to move forward. He proved the change was really happening.
We had some funlarious times with Mike didn’t we? Sharing the laughter and love. A great community guy, and life is precious, and God, and the bible. He also ended up getting a $5MM paycheck after the Sens went to the Cup finals. Which is awesome for him. Being rich looks really awesome. I should know, I watch Cribs sometimes. Did you know that Missy Elliot hollowed out a perfectly good Lamborghini to put a bed inside? You cant teach that in How To Be A Rich Adult Baby School.
After many years with the organization we knew what we were getting with The Fish Monger and it was about 40 points with the dangling potential of 50+. Did we year in, year out expect too much of him? Probably. Was the belief that he was a 3rd line centre with 2nd line expectations accurate? Depends on who you ask but at his price tag we were basically never going to be happy with him. Especially so when you consider his yearly wearing of the “Mrs. High & Wide” sash (see what I did there?). But for his drawbacks guy was a goddamn gladiator for the Sens and left the organization as, deservedly, one of the most beloved players in the team’s history. He’s been given added responsibility in Nashville and I think he’s thriving under it.
What else is going on? Oh yeah, goaltending ALWAYS a thing.
Not sarcastically speaking, in a very surprising turn of events, Alexander Auld will get his first start of 2012 tonight. It’s weird because as much as I was talking about Craig Anderson getting way too many starts in a row, he ended up getting so many that now that Auld is actually starting I don’t think I feel great about it. What’s a girl to do? Watch hockey? Watch hockey. Okay, Auld is in tough as, I’m saying it, Vezina candidate and Olive Garden Pasta dish, Pekka Rinne is in for Nashville. Yeah, he’s enjoying a half decent run…you know, just your average 10-0-1, with a 1.62GAA and .948 save percentage in his last 11 games…so…get well soon Senators scoring ability! We hope you do get well.
Anything else? Something I was supposed to tiptoe around…
Oh yeah, right, Sens are doing really, really poorly right now and Nashville is doing LESS THAN POORLY. So that’s a thing. Me being the kind of guy that I am, I still believe this game is winnable as any game is. No teams go 82-0 or 0-82. That said, a lot is going to have to go right for the boys to take this one. Jason Spezza who has reportedly been battling the flu this past while, has hopefully had some time at home to recover and it will be great timing if he can look like his regular self tonight. Speaking of looking like yourself again, remember when Milan Michalek was a guy who scored all the time? Yeah, would be awesome to see that happen again. Kyle Turris has been making good things happen but tonight’s the night to bury his chances. AAAAAAnd on the subject of burying your chances, Bobby Butler will START the game on the top line with Spezza and 9MM. If he cant get something going quick expect to see his chances get buried in the bottom six. I am hoping to see beloved munchkin and new holder of the “Mrs. High & Wide” title Erik Karlsson put some points on the board after an uncharacteristic cold streak. Brian Lee draws into the line up while Zenon sits…so that’s a thing I guess .
With Rinne in net and Trotz’ disciplined defensive system at full buy in, the Sens are going to need points points points. That’s how this one will be won or lost. Cant be giving up goals early. Also of note: Shea Weber once shot a puck through the fucking net. Through. The. Fuck.ing. net.
Enjoy the game everybody!