James Day Preview: Ottawa Vs. The Ned Flanders of Hockey

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“…hey y’all”

Yo. There must be a lot of new Sens fans out there.

Hold on a sec, everyone. Take a knee there, new fish. I got something I gotta explain to you:

The first two home games of the season coming against the leafs and habs is Gary HUSSEIN Bettman trying to break our collective spirit. With the unprecedented amount of old dudes who like these old man teams, general dumbasses and young guys with suuuper aggressive dad issues out there, it is basically impossible to have a respectable showing at these games (HAVE U HEARD?). Further, given how distant and withholding so many people’s fathers apparently are, these fans really come out to try to impress them with intensity. Spoiler 2 them: It will never work. Your dad hates you and your new, more realistic real doll. Your dad AND the doll wish you were never born but, anyway, congratulations for hating the city you live in with ferocity.
Anyway, fish, the point I’m trying to get through to you is this: The more of these games are played, the more you will come to understand that winning despite a FOUR goal performance from a player that has received hype for the last four months leading up to this game and followed by a game where Ottawa blew a two goal lead only to come back in exciting fashion are NOT regular things. Try. To. Enjoy. Them. For. A. Minute. Trust me, it’s a long season and there will be successful embarrassments from crazy individual efforts of unlikable players on shit teams and blown leads followed by shootout losses to come.
Where I’m at: Those wins are enough for me to accept a few L’s in a row tbh. If you don’t think the Sens are good enough to compete or whatever I suggest you cherish the little victories along the way then. I mean, do your thing but I will live longer than you. Be safe, beloved.

On to the game!

The Detroit Red Wings: Whose Mans Are These?
Yo when did the Red Wings turn into the New York Knicks assembling the wild 2008 All Star team?

Did this team just quietly fall in the organizational power rankings from “Smartest team in the NHL” to “This year’s team with those ‘Thomas Vanek gooooooot thiiiiiis thoooo’” cokedreams? Honestly, the guy couldn’t hang with the Minnesota Wild.
Serious Q: Is Vanek the first player to ever be bought out by the Wild? This is the team that drafted Matt Kassian in the second round. Also, not for nothing, Minnesota replaced Vanek with the swaggarlessness gawd, Eric Staal. Haven’t the Twin Cities suffered enough with the passing of Prince?

Let’s see who else is on Detroit’s 2008 All Star squad. Ah, Mike Green (35 pts last year) is their answer to Erik Karlsson…so…wow. Let’s just move forward.

There are some bright spots for the perennially haven’t done shit in the playoffs since Lidstrom retired dangerous Wings.

Dylan Larkin for one. He had a very successful season for a rookie. No shade, but if Ottawa was pinning its future to a kid for having a 45 point rookie season people would be making fun of us. But look I’m classier than that and I will make fun of them for more legit reasons: STEVE OTT IS ON THIS TEAM.

K, there’s also star goaltender, former Ottawa 67 (gang gang) Petr (sic) Mrazek in net (0-2). He’s looking to bounce back from that wild early season 4.06 GAA. I’m sure Hoffman, Stone, Ryan, Brassard, Turris and Karlsson will go easy on him. Especially Hoffman who I’m sure is feeling super chill about not having a goal yet.

Alright we’ve had lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of fun making fun Flanders. What, we don’t have no flies on us? Well, with a 2-0 record not yet really. Just kidding. Listen, this is the year I officially lose it on this issue:

The ‘Be Safe Tho’ Heard ‘Round the World
Borowiecki in, Chabot (still) out. I meaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan…LOOK, it’s only been two games (2-0-0) and Boucher has been pretty up front about Chabot getting his first action against either Detroit or Phoenix but it’s more stuff like this that frightens me:

K, is that the real competition?  Why does it have to be Chabot Vs. Guy who is way better than Borowiecki again? Seriously, we’ve got this apparent X’s and O’s detail based, strategic mastermind in Boucher, a former head coach with a Cup and 15 seasons experience in Crawford and some big timey eye in the sky video coach now. I’m hoping at some point they at least N O T I C E that Borowiecki is a hot mess. I’m sure deciding when a first round pick’s first game comes is a tricky decision (right Ozton Mayhews?) and perhaps Boucher feels his game would be best suited against the hung and youngry™ Coytoes on Tuesday. I  just thought I would be angry about that for a minute…let’s see anything else? Oh, Matt Puempel is in and Phil Varone is out. I have very little to say about this. I’m not saying I’m ready to throw in the towel on Puempel but it’s gonna be tough for a player like him on the 4th line. I suppose Kelly makes for a bit more of a chance for Pumps to do something on the bottom line than last year but I don’t expect much. Life is about lowered sexpectations for late first round picks.

And the Rest:
The Sens top six has been doing top sixie thangz in the first two games of this yung c-son but in the last game we got a treat: A beautiful trying goal from the third line. Great to see new guy Tom Pyatt bury one after a nice give and go between perfect hockey player JG Pageau and Ryan Dzingel to enter the zone. I’ve liked Pyatt so far. Something tells me a “Guy Boucher player” is of a more useful ilk than a “Dave Cameron player” or “infinity other coaches we’ve had the past near-decade type player.”

Andrew “The Handmurderer” Hammond gets the start in net. The OTHER Andy™ had a bit of an up and down season last year (read: bad) but the worst of it came after coming back from a concussion he suffered off the rip. Hopefully his dome is clear and he can go back to his winning like 20 games in a row self. R E A S O N A B L E.

BOLD Predictions:

  • Justin Abdelkader will score because that name is REALLY annoying and he always finds a way for me to hear it. You know, I actually kind of respect that brand of hater shit.
  • Sens power play starts clicking. Have you seen that thing? It’s only a matter of time. Speaking of which, Hoffman def gets one tonight.

Enjoy the game, drink your Steelback Beer responsibly.

James Day Preview: Sens-leafs. Catch the Taste or Whatever

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See me at the spot with that vanity tag featuring the 2016-17 motto.

 

It’s time. I’m pulling up to the 2016-17 Ottawa Senators season. Hair lookin DEEC(ish), smellin’ more or less right, hands moisturized and packing an extremely healthy relationship with the sport of hockey. Look, as an adult person who’s definitely not a virgin (check out sex tape and past), I absolutely didn’t change my computer password today because it’s always the name of a Sens player and I have never believed in the past that my password choice may have played a part in bringing the player bad luck. As such, NO I didn’t feel compelled to switch it from a roster player to a retired player for cosmic alignment purposes and things of that nature. I just did regular normal things. I should also mention that I did not decide to watch the game from my mobile command centre beneath the Earth’s crust instead of a bar or the CTC because when Ottawa plays Toronto I get too mean if the Sens are winning and I drink too heavily and get too aggressive if Toronto is winning. Just a day filled with a bunch of healthy things about a thing I believe I enjoy over here. Good. Now that we’ve clarified that:

 

Hi.

 

So, listen, maybe I spend far too much on the ol’ Sensphere (RIP the word ‘maybe’) but things seem almost stunningly grim out there going into this season. It’s pretty much been a rough ride since beating Montreal in the playoffs a few years back. The team never seemed to round that corner that many of us thought they’d reached. In the piss stream media, I read over and over that the Sens have done nothing to improve. I’ve seen many predictions for bottom 5 finishes. That last year’s poor result is this year’s poor result. Thanks, why even watch! While there is still a Clarke MacArthur shaped hole in our hearts, I have to say the Sens are still not world beaters but are better than last year’s and will be better. I’ma break this hater shit down one time:

– Kyle Turris bent his leg at an angle not in accordance with God’s Plan and kept playing for some reason and went from being on pace for a career best year to finishing with a career low in points. He was basically the Montreal canadiens of players last year.
CONTROVERSIAL TAKE: I believe, a healthy Kyle Turris is better than a very much injured Kyle Turris. I’m sorry I just do. A top line centre that improves on better than career worst numbers and doesn’t make you feel sympathy pangs when you watch him skate? This MAY have an effect.

– Like it or not I need to write this message in the sky in gossamer teardrops: Dion Phaneuf IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSSSSSS a better option than Jared Cowen [currently fighting contract buy out] and Patrick Wiercioch (52 GP: 0G, 5A). Also speaking of God’s Plan, in Phaneuf, the team also finally has an option better than Mark Borowiecki to play with Karlsson if when Marc Methot goes down with an injury. Do not @ me.

– I do drink the Kool Aid that Derick Brassard will be a more consistent player than Mika Zibanejad. After a summer of projecting the future and blah blah blah I’m talking now. I think we’re going to love this guy.  If you are really in your feelings about losing Ziba still, I understand but hopefully you can eventually find solace in that Brassard will easily be as good as Zibanejad and might be a better fit for the line up (read: A centre who’s good at making plays).

– Dave Cameron is gone. You know, former British Prime Minister who played Mark Borowiecki as a forward? Yeah. More than once. More than once. More than once. More. Than. Once. He has been replaced by Guy Boucher. A coach with NHL experience who claims that he plans to play to the players’ respective strengths. I think if he just follows through on some of what he’s said in the off season, that will be an improvement over the shit like: Borowecki as a winger over ANY other forward, Boro-Karlsson instead of Anyone Else-Karlsson, Benching Hoffman, Hoffman NOT playing regularly on the power play, Hoffman on the 4th line, Hoffman on the bench, line juggling cokedreams, etc. Just don’t do those things and that’s an improvement. I should mention the biggest potential boost of all…

Hey, Come Here and Check this out:

I don’t know if Mike Babcock’s stratagem involves his dumb, shitty team never taking a penalty at any point during the game but should that not work out I would advise everyone to be safe. In a post-Dave Cameron paradigm, the thing I am most looking forward to seeing is the power play unit that that Guy Boucher has assembled:

Ryan – Brassard – Stone

Hoffman – Karlsson

See…it’s not that haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaard.

Yo, that crew is so obvious and good that if there even is a second unit I don’t care if it’s this:

Neil – Miniature Schnauzer – Konopka

Borowiecki – Frozen Dinner

3 forwards who can both score and set up goals and the team’s two best shooters up top? Just keep them out there the full two minutes. Honestly, all I  ask as a fan is if that formation doesn’t score the first WEEK of the season just keep them To-Geth-Er. They eventually will score a lot, I promise. If that power play can’t do better than 26th in the league well…I will continue to not know anything about the sport of iced hockey.

 

Oh Right the Fucking Game:

The rebuilding leafs are looking a lot like another exciting, up and coming franchise to the West, the Edmonton Oilers. Some exciting young forwards, a group slightly melted troll dolls dressed up in knockoff NHL uniforms on defense and this year’s model of starting goalie <insert name> who is either playing hurt or will look like they are playing hurt.

Seriously, that defense is a sight. Morgan Reilly and Jake Gardiner are deec but Roman Polak? Matt…Hunwick? Who the hell are these dudes? Martin Marincin? Did Toronto do a blockbuster swap with the Orlando Solar Bears that I didn’t know about? Wow, Morgan Reilly was second in leafs scoring with 36 points. SECOND. Mmm, cool, he managed 27 assists. That just edges Erik Karlsson’s 25 POWER PLAY assists. Did I mention that was on one of the worst power plays in the league? It’s almost like they are the reigning worst team in the entire league.
Anyway, I’m sure he, Mike Hoffman and Mark Stone will go easy on them out there.

Freddie Andersson (?) gets a rare start in net. Yet another product from the goaltending factory of Denmark. Note to the young netminder: If Hoffman or Karlsson looks like they might take a shot in your direction probably best to just get out of the way. Goalie equipment has come a long way but can only do so much. Be safe tho.

Anyway, whatever. Nothing gets Sens fans in their feelings more than a leafs game on home ice. Regardless of your overall outlook on this year’s model of the Senators, they are way fucking better than the leafs and need to win games like this.

 

Now go out there boys and HAVE FUN.

 

 

 

 

……..no, seriously, win the fucking game. Show a little respect for the community.

 

 

James Day Preview: Ottawa Visits Texa$ with a Dollar Sign (to borrow money)

 

Alert

Hey there hi there HO THERE. Whew, sorry, off to a bit of a rough start here. Let me regroup…Bob Cole style:

Hockey. Tonight. The Ottawa Sens. The Texas Stars. Captain Jaden Spenzza looks to get revenge on Captain Al Silfversson. OH! BABY!

Area Goaltender Proving Doubters Wrong Despite Years of Goodness:

Put your handerson in the handerson of the manderson who stopped the puck…derson.
Craig Anderson everybody! BAMBY! BAMBY! BAMBY! I don’t care who the opponents were, the bald headed beast has turned away the last 61 shots he’s faced and that’s the kind of momentum he needs going into a game against the high octane offense of 3 goal DYNAMO Ales Hemsky. Yo, shit is quiet for your man Hemsky.
Remember when letting him dip and keeping Michalek was a disaster? Heady days. I didn’t think I’d be saying “well at least Milo is a solid 3rd liner” when re-examining that turn of events. Yeah, we’re good for 4th liners who can put up a goal total that you can count on one hand here in Ottawa, thank you very much.
“I can’t really hurr…what Ales say because I have my 4 goals pluggings my ear” – Z. Smith, person who is currently outscoring Hemsky.

Heyyyyyyy, raise your hand if you would prefer Hemsky’s contract pushing fellow right winger Mark Stone down the lineup ‘til 2017? Me. Neither. Bullet dodged.

Gathered crowd in unison: “JAMES STOP HATING, STOP HATING…*sniffle* he’s already deaaaaaaad!”

(Exclusive Video: Me, hating)

BACK OFF, I still need to bring up when Alex Chiasson was a huge disappoint to us all last season and ended said season tied with Hemsky’s 11 goals. Imagine he made 4 million instead of  900K?  Or you can picture David Legwand but making an extra million bucks and signed for longer. Did we lose that Spezza trade? I don’t know, I guess but less we forget that Spezza put up fewer points than Turris last year…and currently does this year as well.  Don’t even get me started on how overlooked it is that Dallas somehow failed to make the playoffs. Must be nice playing in Texas where no one gives a shit about the quality of the team until further notice. Like Milli Vanilli said, “Blame it on the not having Patrick Sharp despite having the Art Ross winner last year” <– relatable problem.
I know, I know that was last year, this is this year and now they’re kicking everyone’s ass. *Slowest clap in human history*

EXTREE EXTREE Stacked Team Does Well.

The most heartwarming story since “LA Kings Overcome Adversity of Winning Cups and Find Way to Be Good Again”.
What was I saying? Oh yeah, fuck this stupid team. #Analysis

 *Looks up at heading* Whoa this started off being about Anderson? K. Tonight he will square of against Antti Niemi. Yes, the goaltender so good he wasn’t resigned by the team he just won the Cup with. Yeah, and if that’s not enough, SAN JOSE thought they were too good for him despite his getting a Vezina nod while playing for them. Round of applause for the Goalie Game Rodney Dangerfield. With only 4 regulation losses on the season, Niemi has been in net for 3 of them. That’s the start of the exact combination of Dallas playing down to the Sens and Ottawa being at their best that’s going to be needed for this thing to work.

 

Speaking of the Sens being at their best…

Please welcome back Colin Greening to the familiar confines of the healthy scratch ranks. We’re all still reeling trying to figure out what Matt Puempel did to deserve this demotion other than put up 1 goal in 17 games despite getting numerous chances to prove himself? I mean, Colin Greening got 26 games before being sent down to the AHL! *Rimshot*

If Prince and/or Puempel were making a strong case for themselves I’d be hot over this but in truth I can’t say that either player have done so. Maybe a bit more time in the AHL, where he recently scored 30 goals, can get Puemps going again.
In the meantime, hey,  Greening gets one game during this call up? I don’t know, I’d almost be curious to see if he was hungry enough to bite someone’s arm off to keep from riding the buses. If not. Well, business as usual. He goes back down to Binghamton until 2017 AKA Clarke Macarthur’s glorious return to the line up (Get well soon my sweet, sweet prince).

Do I have anything to say about the actual game? Hmmm.

With the majority of the high end players playing quite Zestily™ right now there’s not much to say in regards to them (thx 4 reading). Well, actually I should bring up Lindy Ruff’s pre-game comments where he said that you could swap Karlsson’s and John Klingberg’s jerseys and you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between them. *Needle skips off record, Internet goes DEAD silent, glass breaks in background* 
King Karl, you really gunna let this guy talk about you like that? You have two fucking Norris Trophies, my pal. You’re the current leader for a 3rd despite having to play with Mark Borowiecki when Marc Methot’s out of the line up. So some punk comes along and gets to make break out passes to Jamie Benn and failing that Tyler Seguin and failing that Patrick Sharp and failing that Jason Spezza? Go rip Antti Niemi’s still beating heart out of his chest protector. Klingberg wasn’t playing on a power play with CHRIS NEIL at the beginning of a Norris winning season. Fuck outta here. Go roof these guys in their own barn.

Wow, I just blacked out.

Since no one askesd, here are some of the lesser skaters I’d love to see have a good game:

Alex Chiasson – Boyo, you’re getting steady time on a good line. Quite literally could not pick a more perfect game for you to have a big night against the team who gave up on you…you know, so this team doesn’t give up on you.

Milan Michalek – You go out there and show em who the REAL overpaid bottom 6 Czech National with top 6 pedigree is!

Shane Prince – B, despite my tough talk earlier, don’t think I’m rootin’ against ya! I don’t ACTUALLY want to see Colin Greening get a chance. Now, go out there are HAVE SOME FUN! score a goal look like a much, much better option than Colin Greening.

Cowen-Ceci Pairing – Self-explanatory

ENJOY THE GAME…or else

 

James Day Preview: Ottawa Vs. I’m So Glad I Don’t Cheer for a Team Called The Predators (Yuck!)

Forgive me, I'm....working some stuff out today.

Forgive me, I’m….working some stuff out today.

Sens Gotta Get the Bats Goin’

What better time to see the Hoffman – Turris – Stone re-united than following a game where the team tried to rely on a cushion of 2 goals to 1 for most of a game against a team they just cannot beat in the Carolina (not the exact name of place where team is based) Hurricanes (Do they get hurricanes in the Carolinas often? I can’t be bothered to research that, WHO HAS TIME?…also why would you name your sports team after something that could potentially destroy the homes of or take the lives of its fans? Wow, this is truly the most I’ve ever sat and thought about this team and they won a Cup – I think, I cant be bothered to confirm. WHO HAS TIME?) WOW, what was I talking about? OH, right, skoaring golez!

Remember back in the goode olde days of less than a month ago when there were complaints of the Sens forward corps being too “Top Heavy” with that 68-7-61 first line? Man, it was such a pain in the ass seeing those guys putting up multi-point games night in and night out. Glad we got a break from that. Today it’s time to put the work boots on and deal with it again.

Bobby Ryan has gradually emerged in hot from his LEGENDARY struggle of a handful of games at the beginning of the year and has settled ‘er down with 7 points in his last 7 games (HALF THE GAMES SO FAR BTW). His middle man Mika Zibanejad could be better but I suppose I’d rather a guy putting up points (2 in his last 2 games, 10 overall) while finding his game than doing sweet, succulent fuck all during that process. Shane Prince is expected to start the game on the line with 6 and 93. Though blessed is the prospect who does not look out of place doing spot duty on both the first and second line, I’m sure I’m not the only fan hoping the Prince of Tides gets a goal tonight. Not to be too tough on a guy who only has a total 12 NHL games to his career so far but a player like Prince has always been a scorer and even though he’s looked great so far you’d hate to see his play deteriorate because he’s feeling snake bitten. Remember Shane, just go out there and have FUN hahahahahaa…ha seriously score a goal tonight or I will eat your pet turtle.

With Zack Smith looking like the odd man of the lineup tonight, a Puempel – Lazar – Neil fourth line is something I can get behind.  While I am not necessarily against rookies being patiently integrated into an NHL roster (AKA EARNIN’ IT AND EVERYTHINK LIKE THAT (Thumbs Up) I really feel for Puempel having to play with Smith and Neil. I thought it was particularly rough to watch them in the game against Winnipeg. Smith and Neil are true fourth line players and Puempel seems destined for a higher slot in the line up eventually.Whatever gotta start somwhere but man it’s gotta be tough for him to any make noise paired with those two. Smith and Neil work hard as hell out there but goddamn neither of them can hang on to the puck for a New York minute. This really hurts a pure sniper like Puempel to be saddled with two guys who have next to no chance of setting him up to do what he’s best at, score goals. It was actually the more versatile Prince, a player with experience as a centre, who could make that line work for him by setting up his linemates, which he did a couple of times.
Long story short, I think Puempel will get a better look with Lazar while Neil waits in the car. Great to see the potential for some fire power on the 4th line because the Sens gotta get the bats goin’ because our defense fucking sucks.
UPDATE (1:07PM) NEVER MIND IT’S PUEMPEL SITTING OUT NOT SMITH DISREGARD ALL POSITIVITY FROM LAST PARAGRAPH

Do I Have to Talk About Defence? GREAT!

Notes from practice: Jared Cowen has strangled to death and eaten a baby dolphin. He has been named Assistant Captain as a result. Turris will be stripped of his letter as the coaching staff sites “inability to set and example and demonstrate Baby Dolphin Murder and Eatfullness to the younger players.” FAIR IS FAIR!
But you know what? You have to respect the kind of power that Jared Cowen wields. Not even a rookie making an impact in a rare shot at playing can unseat him.
Also, whatever pictures of Dave Cameron Borowiecki possesses must be scandalous as HELL. I know we’re all ragging on these guys but goddamn what do either of these dudes have to do to get benched for ONE game? They have been just awful. Tonight they get yet another chance to turn it around.

Look, for all you Nerdlingers out there, despite the offensive boost he provided (#blessed)  Wideman didn’t exactly have strongest game possession-wise against one of the shittiest teams in the league :

Take it from KING of the Nerds

Take it from KING of the Nerds

BUT YOU KNOW WHAT?! If he was bad in that respect I think we’re all ready for at least a different KIND OF BAD. Goal scoring and defensively bad? I will take that over “When he makes one solid play it seems like a big deal” bad. We fans are “United in being ready for a new type of bad™” *Timpani, Danger Flutes*   

Silverish linings: The return of Cody Ceci to the lineup means the end of our municipal daymare of Mark Borowiecki as a top 4 defender…and the return of him as bottom pairing defender…playing on his wrong side. LETS MOVE ON.

Do Unto Andy
Greg Anderton starts in net tonight. He’s been his excellent self this season and is looking to string together his 3rd straight win. Andy has had a sub 2.00GAA in those last two starts against the habs and the jorts and was first star of both of those games. You can’t expect your goalie to carry you to that degree every night. Tonight would be a great time to start helpin’ a baldie out. Putting some points on the board against the defensively excellent (read: boring AF) Predators (again, eww) is absolutely crucial to taking this road game.

Notes on Nashville
I don’t know they are a stupid boring team that I don’t care about and I don’t feel like writing about so I won’t because this ain’t my real job, lady.

Thx 4 reading enjoy the game

GO SENS!

James Day Preview: The Ottawa Senators host Los Diablos del Nueva Yersey

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3-2-1 Contact

Hi there. How are you feeling about YOUR Oddawa Sennerders? I have to say, personally, they’re about where I pegged them to be at 3-2-1. So far they’ve…

Won some winnable games: Heyyy turns out the Toronto Vape O’ Leafs are not that good!

Lost some v. losable games: Sorry but slow start or not a rested Penguins team desperate for their first win of the season playing Ottawa coming off a cozy victory on a road trip back to back has Sens loss written all over it.

Such and such: Outplaying a good team like Nashville at home, only ever leading for 5 minutes in the 2nd period, going down [again], then heroically tying the game late in the 3rd to ultimately lose in the shootout…basically sounds like 70% of the Sens games I’ve attended at the Tires.com arena.

Though the performances themselves have been all over the place so far in this Yung C-son, the Sens have shown the ability to win some of the games that were theirs to win. This is good. Sure blah dee dee blah parity and blah dee blah anything can happen but damn girl, 4 days off and a home game against Los Diablos del Nueva Yersey? You gotta hack that bone. Let’s have a brief look at the cavalcade of stars that will be rolling into Ottawa 2nite!

Press play on this before reading this next bit:

Jordin Tootoo (1pt, already been fined this season)

Mike Cammelleri (Congrats being a first line player on this team despite your washed AF status. Remember when this guy getting traded qualified as shocking news? What a world.)

Lee Stempniak (8th NHL team is a charm for this 32 year old who I definitely knew was still playing in North America! Heyyyyyy also a top 6 player here!)

Adam Larsson – Lottery pick well spent!

Kyle Palmieri – ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Tuomo Ruutu – Injured!

Corey Schneider – Is he good? I can’t care!

Aaaaand the rest…A guy named Schlemko, a guy named Severson…both sound made up to me. No time to research, the game needs me. Let’s get to our major story lines:

Does Andrew Hammond play for this team still?
It’s a question I would have asked in a much less joking, more honest way in 2014. Seriously, I never thought I’d be rubbing my hands together like Birdman wondering “When’s ole hickory Hammond going to get a chance to start?” But it’s 2015 and 7 games into the season here we are.
After coming in Icy Hot™ with a groin strain suffered in training camp, the Hamburglar’s bathing suit area is all loosened up and he’s ready to follow up on a brief 26 game call up that went largely unnoticed last season.
Just a regular backup getting a regular first start of the year. No pressure little buddy! Just go out there and have some fun! Hahahahahaha…heh-heh…hmmm heh heh *sigh* [Seriously don’t fuck this up].

What? One of our best forwards AND best defenders have already suffered concussions? But it’s not even my birthday!
K, I feel like any fan when the team is missing some key players and looks like it needs a little boost from someone Young n’ Hungry™ n’ lookin to make an impression with the big club™. But now that we live in a Post #FreePrince and #FreeWideman paradigm, I think it’s starting to show that we’ve been a bit spoiled by instant impact debuts of the past like those of Mark Stone or Cody Ceci. Wideman and Prince have looked totally fine so far but have also shown that most call ups are going to be eased into an extended stay in the NHL instead of being expected to come in and lead. Which is smart. I mean, hey, don’t get me wrong, I’m certainly not opposed to someone wrecking shop right away. Shane Prince if you want to come thru tonight and knock out a hattrick in the first period be my guest (I saw him do it with the 67s!). But Prince playing with Smith and Neil and Wideman being paired with Cowen t’aint the problem here.
What the Senators need to take it up a notch or two is for several players that we already know are good to start looking like themselves. Talking about Bobby Ryan, Mika Zibanejad, Milan Michalek and Patrick Wiercioch here people (I’m positive I’m the first person to bring this up). You know, the guys who’ve earned millions of space bux from proving they are good at the hockeys. Again, not even asking [is it asking or aksing?] for them to be their absolute best like Turris, Hoffman and Stone have been so far. No, I’m just asking for them to look like themselves. That’s how super #Chi11 I am.

Zero-Chill Korner: Ima get a little controversial considering he’s over a point per game right now but am I the only one who thinks aside from that Columbus game we’ve not yet seen close to the Erik Karlsson we’ve grown to know and love and name unpopular blogs after? Not saying he’s been bad or even mediocre…no, just waiting for him put on that extra “we are witnessing one of the best players of his generation” sauce. Yes, I know he’s had a 4 point game. Yes, I am aware I’m an asshole. Let’s move on…
So, what I’m saying here is with MacArthur and Methot out and the team with a DEEC but not sterling record, it’s not up Prince and Wideman to just slide in and be top six or top 4 players, it’s up to the guys who basically already are that to you know…BE that. So I propose THIS powerful hashtag that is bound to influence Dave Cameron’s decisions:

#FreeSeveralEstablishedPlayersGenerallyBeingBetter

Join the movement!

Ahh, it’s working already! Borowiecki will stay paired with Karlsson.
Update: Turns out crackpipe will be paired with my lips until Methot returns.

Gentle Advice for Borowiecki: Just fuckiiiiiiiiiiiiin hold it down, skate as fast as you caaaaan and pass to Karlsson and kill anyone who goes near Karlsson. Get well Marc Methot we want you to get weeeeeeeeeeeeeeell but also don’t ruuuuushhh back from your heaaaad injuryyyyy.

The Importance of Hearing Both Sides   

Ahem, (spotlight please):

Tonight marks Chris Neil’s 900th career game, each of them performed in front of a live studio audience in an Ottawa Senators uniform. We’ve seen Neil morph over the past few years from Fan Favourite to a Fan Favourite / Maybe Most Divisive Player on Entire Team (I’ve admittedly been part of that!). But for a moment I invite you to join me and put whatever bad feelings you may have for him aside and recognize that tonight’s milestone is quite the accomplishment.

A complete afterthought at the 1998 draft, taken in the 6th round at 161st overall, Neil made the Sens by turning heads at training camp in 2001 despite that his highest pro point total up to then was 36 in the IHL. Even if you are not a fan of his hard hitting, face punching, roof raising style consider the amount of high end prospects, 1st round picks, basically more talented players who had a better shot who have exited the NHL in a fraction of the time that Neil has managed to stay employed.

He’s an enforcer, sure, there’s no denying that but if I credit Neiler (nickname I just came up with) with one thing is that he is precursor to what will become Toughguy 2.0 in the Hover Hockey League of the fantastic year 25, 000, 000. Neil has been a guy who’s built his identity as someone who will drop the gloves but he has always been able to take a shift as well. He even put up 16 goals and 33 points in his best season. Pretty damn solid numbers for a fourth line goon. Long gone are the mostly healthy scratched, 1 lucky point a year Matt Kassian enforcers of the world. Chris Neil still has a job at 36 and don’t rule out one more short deal either whether in Ottawa or elsewhere. Coming into camp 12 pounds lighter with zero PIMs so far the man’s certainly gunning for it.
Toughness will always exist in hockey and if taking punches as well as shifts is the new wave, I like to think Neil was a bit ahead of his time in this respect.

Even though it has admittedly felt that it’s been time to pass the torch in Ottawa for a while now; and we’ve been a little bit thirsty to move on from some of our older legacy players…..named Christopher, congratulations to a guy who was never supposed to make it on his 900th game. He went from Flesherton, Ontario (?) to seeing his bulldog face on banners, wearing a letter and has been a community ambassador to the city of Ottawa. Not to mention being a h_ck of a pitchman for express motor oil changes as well as a host of other automotive services as well. Hats off to a guy who’s been around for more than half of the Senators modern history. That’s a lot of our Sens memories. Here a few of my favorite Chris Neil moments:

Ugly, grimy OT playoff goal against  handsome, sparkly goaltender:

Stoner takes a huge hit (I am so, so sorry)

Hands of…Neil:

I couldn’t find that awesome break away goal from 2005 where he hung onto the crossbar after so you’ll have to settle for this:

James Day Preview: James 4, Judgement Night™

Game 3

Hi,

So…welcome to this website.

First a song:

We’ve had lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of fun /
but now the time has come …to wiiiiiiiiin /
If this old clown is found dead in his bed tomorrow /
I’ll be in heaven… STILL WRITING THIS BLOOOOG.

It rhymes and everything!

Now a quote:

“This has been such an amazing ride to the playoffs, that no matter what happens I will be happy.” – Me, person, a couple of weeks ago.

Ah, I was so young and idealistic back then. Maybe it was the lost year away from post season play but I have been reminded how crushing post-season losses are. Uncle, you guys, uncle. I get it! I remember now. A li’l dose of vitamin W would be great…I don’t know…how about..sayyyyy 2NITE?

We’re getting Pageau’ed out there!

So that’s what it feels like to have some nobody coming out of the woodwork and lighting your team up. Worse when the MF looks like Terry from FUBAR.

Ugh.

We need to get some beauties on the score sheet and by beauties I mean beautiful young ladies comme ca:

Speaking of the Score Sheet, That last game tho: 

I’ma come CLEAN that last game is all on the forwards. Say what you will about Terry’s OT winner on Andy but a team that finished the season with five 20 goal scorers needs to put more than one biscuit on the board.
Sure, Carey Price is playing very well but he was not the difference that game. The difference was the Habs defenders keeping Ottawa’s attackers to the outside forcing them to the corner where they kept looking for the pass in front that simply was not there. Again and again. I don’t know about you, Eddie, but It was driving me bananas.

This rant brought to you by Uncle Clarkey’s Li’l Garbage Snipes. Li’l Garbage Snipes Official Goal of Game 3 and hopefully game 4, available at fine outlets like a foot in front of the net!:

http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/embed?playlist=2014030113-262-h&site=senators

Ottawa has everything to lose tonight. In the words of on again-off again WTYKY contributor Babycakes, “Be aggressive.”

Deathworld shit.

Speaking of being aggressive: The biggest piece of news for tonight is that Zack Smith will draw into the lineup in place of David Legwand. It’s hard to have much to say about this other than that I hope he can use his physicality to create some room for 27 goal scorer and fellow 4th liner Mike Hoffman to do his thing. After watching Ottawa lose 2-1 in overtime, I am among those puzzled as to why a player with as much scoring touch as The Hoff is not getting a few more looks on the line he excelled on with Ryan and Ziba. Good as he’s been, Michalek seems like he would be great in the bottom six considering how awesome he is defensively. Maybe a goal tonight could get Hoffman a promotion…………….?…………….I have no idea……………………………?????????????????????…thx 4 reading…………?

It’s just been confirmed, Andy is getting the start in net. Magical as Hammond’s run was, I think this is the right call. Anderson was unreal in Game 3 and the 2-1 score is very flattering when you take into account that 49 shots were surrendered … wow, does that sound like the beginning of the season or what?
Side Note: Time is a flat circle.

There’s so little info up for grabs during the playoffs that it makes writing game previews fun and easy.

Smooth Jimmy’s Lock of the Week: Feels like a Lazar goal night.

Please get this W boys, you deserve it.
Go Sens Go!

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!