Coyotes at Oilers, G45/08-09

This is Roberto Clemente. He played right field like a prison break. Vin Scully once said that “Clemente could field the ball in New York and throw out a guy in Pennsylvania” and he was only lying a little.

Bill James, the great baseball writer, gave a wonderful description of Clemente years ago: “I’ve been trying a little experiment, asking baseball fans that I meet who had the best throwing arm they ever saw. It’s very rare that anybody who is old enough to remember seeing him play doesn’t immediately say “Clemente.” For younger fans, you just can’t believe what it was like; I hope we see another one like it, or you’ll never believe that it was possible. His throws combined strength, accuracy and speed of release in whatever proportions were necessary to get the job done, Freddie Patek once told me he saw Clemente throw people out at the plate from the warning track at Forbes Field, over 350 feet away. I never saw him do that but I saw him grab a double in the gap and fire it to second base to make it an oops/single, when the entire transaction was so lightning fast that even having seen him do it four or five times, you still couldn’t believe it was possible.”

Glenn Anderson treated hockey’s neutral zone like Roberto Clemente played right field. To the point of pure physical violence, Glenn Anderson mashed everything in sight–defensemen, linesmen, sticks, pucks, goalies, nets and if the boards hadn’t been there he would probably have killed the zamboni. When Glenn Anderson was in full flight with the puck on his stick, you didn’t need to see the defenseman say “oh shit” to know he was in fact saying it.

Defend it? Hell, surviving it was the goal.

From the group who made up the Boys on the Bus, he’s the strange one, the personality who never really spent the time across the table so the folks could get to know him. Gretzky the nice guy, Messier the bull in a china shop, Kurri the thinking man’s player. Anderson? His personality on the ice was as colorful and electrifying as any other, but his off-ice indifference and wooden answers and live hits with television left fans with the feeling that Anderson never really bought in, never helped with the chores. That was a long time ago, and as with all families it doesn’t matter now what’s done is done. The important thing is that he’s back for a reunion and perhaps one final chance to bond in a real way with the people who watched him fly through the neutral zone like a hurricane.

They’re honoring Glenn Anderson tonight. Let’s all enjoy it.

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454 Responses to "Coyotes at Oilers, G45/08-09"

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  1. Loxy says:

    bah-zing!

    Actually, the appropriate response is now “clap clap”.

  2. bookie says:

    Maybe its not the best song, but the best song that never made it….

    Here is a better link, actual video
    People who died

    To be honest, there are loads of great 80′s (and near 80′s) punk songs and even some good metal songs, and as I get older I have even learned to appreciate some of the crap music from that era…

    Outside of Grunge, the 90′s were pretty barron of anything good because it basically people singing about bitches and ho’s

    On that note, here is the best 90′s song! give it a few seconds…

    The gourds

  3. Chris says:

    Well if we're going to discuss the best songs of the 80s my obvious bias is towards the great 80s hard rock/metal standars..but the best 80s pop rock song is obviously

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=adaYUM5wl7c&feature=related

  4. Chris says:

    Well my take on the last stretch of games has been rather cynically that the Oilers were a one line team whose one line was missing its best player. The Oilers just don’t have the secondary scoring right now to miss the straw that stirs the drink on the top line and forge ahead. Hence recent experience has been mixed at best.

    As for Reddox, haven’t we learned a long time ago that coachable pluggers are MacT’s cowbell?

  5. Chris says:

    Oh and Tyler that Toto song is "Africa" but as far as 80s songs about continents I'm more partial to

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNT7uZf7lew&feature=related

  6. danny says:

    FCM,

    Ferverent aspirations aside, you missed the entire gist of my point. Horcoffs been very consistent. He puts up great numbers when he plays 2nd or 3rd toughs. When he’s the toughs guy, he’s a consistent 50-60 point player.

    In fairness, you probably didn’t read the other thread.

  7. Doogie2K says:

    If we want to talk about 80s metal, might I submit Metallica’s first music video? Apparently they only discovered the parallels between “One” and Johnny Got His Gun after the fact, and went out and bought the rights so they could make the video the way they did (and also, I would guess, to not get sued).

  8. LittleFury says:

    No discussion about ’80s pop can be complete without a mention of The Romantics.

  9. Black Dog says:

    Damn, I can’t believe I missed this thread!

    Africa is the first song I ever kissed a girl to. I wrote a post about it last month.

    And I was raised on 80s music – the best, my friends, the best. One of my all time faves is Come On Eileen.

    And Bananarama!

  10. heed says:

    Joy Division

    I pretty mcuh listen to a Joy Division song almost every day. If I can’t manage to put it into the rotation, New Order definitely does.

    You can’t write off entire eras or genres of music. As a young’en, I always believed that country sucked. Now I can’t imagine not listening to Cash, Hank Williams Sr, Loretta Lynne, et al. The wife and I are music fanatics which definitely helps since she forces me to listen to music I might otherwise dismiss before taking a listen.

  11. Kristopher Milligan says:

    Im not sure if anyone mentioned yet, but i just noticed that Brodziak went 12-2 in the dot last night… that bodes well.

  12. Ribs says:

    Phoenix is the worst faceoff squad in the league so it’s nothing to get too excited about.

  13. Schitzo says:

    So I meant to ask this earlier – if Cole had a mean streak, how close would he be to Anderson?

  14. bookie says:

    You can’t write off entire eras or genres of music. As a young’en, I always believed that country sucked.

    To be fair, that is ‘classic country’ or even folk music really… the country of the 80′s up until present has totally sucked. Folk and Classic Country are awesome.

  15. hunter1909 says:

    “So I meant to ask this earlier – if Cole had a mean streak, how close would he be to Anderson?”

    Anderson was incredibly deadly anywhere near the net. Cole is…um… there’s no real comparison really.

    I’d still say Smyth with about 300% more skill would be a better compare to Anderson. Or 3,000%, depending on your grading preferences.

  16. Schitzo says:

    Anderson was incredibly deadly anywhere near the net. Cole is…um… there’s no real comparison really.

    Really? Everyone seems to describe Anderson as a great skater who was a bull on the puck. That sounds more like Cole than wobbly-ankles Smyth.

    I dunno, I assumed the man who broke his neck driving for the net was a reasonable comparison :)

  17. Bruce says:

    Wow, what a thread. I left it around 4 or 5 o’clock, paid $15.95 to watch the pregame ceremonies but headed immediately out to a 7 o’clock shift at the observatory and missed both game and thread. A few random comments, preceded by an important question: Is the post-game locker room scene mandatory viewing or must-miss TV? My PVR awaits the verdict.

    If you think Ales Hemsky has a good contract, consider the long-term deal Glenn Anderson signed in 1984. 8 years, $3.2 MM. As in, $3.2 MM TOTAL. $400 grand a year. At the time Anderson was a 23-year-old speedster still reaching his prime, coming off a 50-goal, Stanley Cup-winning season. Andy delivered 8 seasons of 72+ GP, scoring 267 regular season goals and another 58 in the playoffs. Less than $10,000 per goal. Less than $1 MM per Stanley Cup. Even in 1984 dollars that’s one hell of a contract.

    Not coincidentally, that deal was done within a week of the NHL announcing the new Megg-Nets instead of the old spikes-in-the-ice goalposts. The durable Anderson, who creashed the net fearlessly with or without the spikes, missed just 22 games to injury (and 8 to suspension)through those 8 years which included many deep runs into the playoffs; and he never missed a single playoff game in a 225-game career. He was one tough hombre.

    (Aside to nobody in particular: Stick that in your innuendo and smoke it.)

    Loved the music thread. When I have a little time I’ll go listen to some of those youtube videos up above.

    Forget Anaheim in 2006, they were playing “Driver’s Seat” the day of Game 5 against the Islanders! A tremendous song, an earworm which I will actually welcome. Somebody mentioned the Payola$ classic “Eyes of a Stranger”, a song that really worked for me. Talking Heads and David Bowie were churning out great stuff, and a fine Canadian band that hasn’t been mentioned yet was Martha and the Muffins. I wasn’t too much into the singles scene (take that either way) in the ’80s, but the best album of 1982 was Peter Gabriel’s Security.

    These days I’m a CKUA man, which gives me a chance to listen to pretty much anything and everything. I agree with the sentiment expressed by LT and others that there is good stuff to be found in all eras and all genres of music.

    Worst idea of the thread was the suggestion that we pressbox our captain. That’s really not something you do at anytime, but it would be an unimaginable insult to do so during a Franchise Game like this one. And of all of us in the Ethan Fan Club knew Our Captain would rise to the occasion with a hat trick. Rod Phillips described Steve Staios threading a cross-ice pass through three Phoenix guys to set up the open-netter and I just giggled at the very concept, but later I saw the replay and damned if that didn’t actually happen. The puck bounced crazily and died on Ethan’s stick and somehow he made the shot in the dying second. You know it’s your night when …

  18. shepso says:

    wow…was not expecting a music thread today. Figured more then a few people would just be wondering how the hell Chopper turned a trick after many of us (myself included, both here at on my home base blog) had left him for dead. It was a great game.
    @Godot and Loxy. I am also an 81 baby, but damn Gang of Four kicks ass. Entertainment was easily one of the best no-wave records of all time. I’m more of a Mission of Burma and Sonic Youth guy, but these things happen… Best thread in a while

  19. quain says:

    Just in case you were all curious: there was a scientific study, and yes, every single player and dynasty in the past was a lot better than they are in this age, and yes, the sport is getting worse and worse.

    In 2045, if you brought vintage Gretzky to the NHL, he would score 47,219 goals. Of course, you’d have to normalize those numbers to before the ‘multi-puck’ era, but even then it would still be slightly above 8,000.

    They just won’t play hockey like they used to *shakes head sadly*

  20. Alice says:

    //Anderson was incredibly deadly anywhere near the net. Cole is…um… there’s no real comparison really.//

    that’s kinda funny, I always remember Anderson having a great release, but only guy who could get 9′ wide AND 3′ high of the mark while standing in the crease – was always, ‘holy fuck, how did he miss That??’ Clutch games brought out an extra gear, a real competitor.

  21. Alice says:

    So to put that in perspective, he put up those beauty counting stats Bruce put up while missing the net about 50% of the time from inside 15′ – had an absolute boatload of great chances. Anyone else share my recollection of his abysmal aim?

  22. Ribs says:

    Schitzo- Cole and Anderson both like to take the puck for roller coaster rides down the side boards and cutting to the net for a shot.

    Anderson didn’t have Cole’s speed but I don’t know if there’s just more hooking, guys are stronger, or if Anderson was just so tough that you couldn’t contain him very long, but he seemed to always get by the checkers or else keep going after the puck when it was knocked away.

    Glenn wasn’t the prettiest player to watch but he was pretty damn effective.

  23. hunter1909 says:

    Okay to put everything in perspective, Cole is better than Anderson, because hockey players today are bigger faster and better in every way.

    Rocket Richard would be in the ECHL these days, along with Jean Beliveau, while Gordie Howe would be a plugger on the Florida Panthers.

  24. Bruce says:

    Let’s just say Andy’s shot weren’t intended to hit the goalie. By the time he was near the net he was frequently on or beyond the edhge of control. I do, however, remember many times when he would hold the puck and extra second, go wide, and hit the roof from an acute angle (like Gilbert did in Colorado).

    The one measurement of shooting accuracy from the era is Sh%,
    where Anderson had a career mark of 16%, better than that in the playoffs, and posted north of 20% in each of the Oilers last 4 Cup runs. So to characterize him as an inaccurate shooter is, uh, off the mark.

  25. Bruce says:

    Hunter: … and Babe Ruth would be in the Carolina League.

    As for Anderson not having Cole’s speed, say whaaaaa….? I would say the reverse.

  26. Black Dog says:

    brings to mind the old joke where they ask Howe how many goals he would score today and he answers 20

    but of course he is 70 years old

    ba dum ba

    Of course though comparing across eras – Howe would still be a superstar, as would Richard etc because they would be bigger and faster and work out year around – they would have the same body types as everyone else in this era

    isn’t there a year where Ruth had more home runs then the remainder of the American league combined or some ridiculous thing like that?

    could you imagine?

  27. Alice says:

    Bruce, If they’re wide tho, do they count as shots? His Sh% would only count the on-target stuff.

    He was, electrifying? Not dazzling, not sniper, but when he was taking a run the bldg held its breath. Edge of control, no Bruce he certainly wasn’t always on the near side of that line! You forget how much fun it was to watch those guys. I’m telling ya, he could miss the net like crazy though.

  28. Ribs says:

    As for Anderson not having Cole’s speed, say whaaaaa….? I would say the reverse.

    I’m sure you’ve seen him play more than I got a chance to, so I’ll take your word for it. Cole’s pretty damn fast though.

  29. Alice says:

    OT: How many SOFOLT (South Ontario Friends of LoweTide) are intending to take in the March 7 tilt at the ACC? A friend just gave a pair of tix to my girls, so I’m thinking to see what’s available for walk-up that day. Might be fun to see some of you crackers.

  30. hunter1909 says:

    No offence to the Cole fans out there, but Anderson was the type of player you KNEW would get your team the big goal.

    Anderson replacing Smyth lol, for the third period seventh game against the Canes? The thing is, he just was going to score you a goal, no ifs, ands or buts.

  31. hunter1909 says:

    Now that I’m in the mood to wax poetic, imagine the 2007-08 Red Wings, but about 3x more likely to win the cup – that’s how cocky Oilers fans felt back during those long gone years.

    The rest of the league was there just to find a way to stop them, but they usually couldn’t.

  32. Schitzo says:

    Hunter – I didn’t mean to ask if they were equally good, just if the playing style was similar. Some of us don’t remember much about him.

  33. Dennis says:

    Nothing to add except this was an Outstanding thread.

    I’m about to watch the game on tape and I’ll post the chances later.

  34. hunter1909 says:

    Schitzo – Anderson was stylistically a cross between Cole and Ryan Smyth – in that he crashed along the boards, but once in front of the net he became a lumberjack with his stick.

    Come to think of it, his stick was always flying around. Make no mistake – Anderson was fucking HATED by the rest of the league. Which is probably why he had to wait so much longer to get in the HOF etc.

  35. Bruce says:

    Cole is fast. It takes him longer to get up a head of steam, but when he gets going, wow.

    To compare Cole and Anderson, there were some simlarities but Anderson was the better player. He was both a better passer and finisher. He could go deeper into the corner before making his cut to the net. He was way better on the backhand, and had better awareness of his teammates. Erik is the more physical of the two, whereas Glenn had, uh, the more active stick. Both are/were wizards at drawing penalties.

    The Big Five of the Oilers were all phenomenal skaters. If you were to ask me which guy was the fastest from centre ice to the net, I would pick Anderson. Then again, if you were to ask me who would win a race goal line to goal line, I might pick Messier. For the fastest to his own goal line, Kurri. For one lap of the rink, Coffey. And for the race to the loose puck, Gretzky, without any doubt. Collectively, they skated circles around the league, playing keepaway while they were at it. So to try and compare any one modern player in a different team context is unfair.

  36. Bruce says:

    Bruce, If they’re wide tho, do they count as shots? His Sh% would only count the on-target stuff.

    Alice: Yes of course. Like I said, he instinctively shot to miss the goalie, and if the goalie leaves you no net to shoot at, such a shot just misses everything.

    He was, electrifying?

    Mercurial.

    Not dazzling, not sniper, but when he was taking a run the bldg held its breath. Edge of control, no Bruce he certainly wasn’t always on the near side of that line!

    Definitely not. As I wrote on my blog in a tribute post yesterday:
    “Like Tim Burke I saw quite a bit of the Rocket in Anderson, from his blazing speed to his ability to rise to the occasion. On the attack he would cut hard to the net from either wing, most often the right side, protecting the puck with an out-thrust leg and shoulder, often handling the puck with one hand on the stick or even just one skate on the ice, driving straight at the goaltender, daring the defenceman to pull him down so he, puck and all, could crash right into the goalie and on into the net if need be. He drew a metric tonne of penalties — only Gretzky was close — as he drove through checks, kept his legs moving, didn’t do the swan drive but crashed hard (and convincingly) to the ice, occasionally with his own stick flying up and ‘accidentally’ clipping the defender. More than once a bewildered opponent needed a towel in the penalty box. Again like the Rocket, he was a hard, occasionally vicious competitor.”

    You forget how much fun it was to watch those guys.

    I haven’t forgotten. One of the funnest parts was seeing how mcuh fun they themselves had. Glenn Anderson took a back seat to nobody in that department.

  37. knighttown says:

    A couple of irrelevant comments:

    1. Kind of lost in the shuffle of the “clap, clap” stuff in this thread, was just how dominant Ales Hemsky was last night. Lots of comments about “glad to have him back” and the like, but that guy was not the Ales Hemsky of November. It’s possible Tootoo knocked the Joe Thornton out of him because all of a sudden he’s become an unconsiouable gunner, ala Kovalchuck. He gave the puck away a few times early and the PP never really got set up but from where I was standing, his performance was one of the best an Oiler has had since #44 left town. I especially loved the circling give-and-go with Staois of all people in the 3rd. If that one-timer gets past Fatty, Fatty Two-By-Four, it goes through the mesh.

    2. Anyone else bothered/confused by the celebration at the end of the Cardinals win? I don’t know why it bothers me but watching Eagles bouncing around chest-bumping with Cards after LOSING turns my stomach. It would be like Filatov coming down and jumping on the Team Canada pile after the Eberle goal.

    3. You must watch this video and tell me it doesn’t belong in the Oiler dressing room after having a peek in on last nights sausage fest,

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FUDrE2Ye2M

  38. Hot Tea says:

    Clap, clap.

    (Hemsky was the man, even if Moreau got the trick)

  39. hunter1909 says:

    “If you were to ask me which guy was the fastest from centre ice to the net, I would pick Anderson. Then again, if you were to ask me who would win a race goal line to goal line, I might pick Messier. For the fastest to his own goal line, Kurri. For one lap of the rink, Coffey. And for the race to the loose puck, Gretzky, without any doubt.”

    Haha brilliant analysis.

    Add: Semenko was a vicious version of Laraque, Messier was every bit as mean as Lindros, McSorely was like Jethro from the Beverly Hillbillies on PCP, and Anderson might as well have been trying to injure anyone who came within 3 feet of him. That team was able to play as tough as anyone.

  40. doritogrande says:

    Ryan Stone’s having a pretty positive impact on the Falcons. Another goal today with Dubnyk turning aside 34 of 35 shots.

    Sugartits? goal, assist, -1 on a SH marker. Um, what?

  41. doritogrande says:

    Also to add, Potulny back to Springfield.

    http://www.falconsahl.com/index.php?id=956

  42. PunjabiOil says:

    Interesting Garon interview today on Team 1260.

    Sheds some light on how MacT mismanaged assets.

  43. Lord Bob says:

    The optimist in me says that Potulny’s going down because the AHL All-Star Game’s in a week, Potulny’s been named to Team PlanetUSA, and the Oilers want to give him a reward for all the good work.

    And that they’re working like hell to get both him and Brule a long-term ride on this team.

  44. Doogie2K says:

    isn’t there a year where Ruth had more home runs then the remainder of the American league combined or some ridiculous thing like that?

    Yeah, but from what I’ve read of his era (admittedly very little), they didn’t really hit for power back then; Ruth was the exception

    @PJO: Do tell.

  45. oilerdago says:

    Lord Bob, doesn’t Potulny have to clear waivers to get through or is there some kind of emergency call up that he’s going to allow us to get him through without the risk?

  46. PunjabiOil says:

    “Two bad games and it was pretty much over.”

    “Practice time was a problem. On and off all the time.”

    Thinks that the whole Pete Peters saying he wasn’t ready to play was really more about MacT and just an excuse.

    No truth at all to all of the goalie coach stories that he “read on the internet.”

    Not offered a contract at all this past summer.

    Credit: Nanook from HF

    http://hfboards.com/showthread.php?t=597174

  47. Schitzo says:

    Lord Bob, doesn’t Potulny have to clear waivers to get through or is there some kind of emergency call up that he’s going to allow us to get him through without the risk?

    If you clear waivers once in a season, you get 10 NHL games or 30 days before you have to clear a second time.

    And re: Garon – WTF was Gregor posting over at ON? He was the one with the “inside info” about a contract extension offer.

  48. bookie says:

    Just in case you were all curious: there was a scientific study, and yes, every single player and dynasty in the past was a lot better than they are in this age, and yes, the sport is getting worse and worse.

    Ok, this is stupid. The best of every era are the best of every era and would likely be as dominant in any other era unless the game changes in some way that biases against their size/physique.

    The game is faster today due to better equipment and more training. Maybe slackers like Fuhr would not make it in the 2008/9 NHL (or Penner), but Gretzky was one of the hardest working hockey players who was dedicated to the sport since childhood.

    You can presume that there has been some change in the Genetic Makeup of humans, but there is no evidence for that. You could (accurately) say that the pool of players is bigger by 35% due to Euro’s, but the league is also bigger.

    If the 1980′s Oiler’s were all reared in today’s hockey environment (training, equipment, etc.) and they all ended up on the same team in 2009, they would be an awesome force to contend with.

    In fact, if you plucked a 1984 greztky out of his time and dropped him on a team today, I bet he would be up to speed in a week or two and be fairly dominant.

    Perhaps the only difference might be that some of the really hard working, scientific managmeent type guys who just barely made it in the league in the 80′s would not make it now because they would no longer have a training edge.

    The natural talent though, that’s genetics…and that has not changed in the last century.

  49. bookie says:

    Looks like Garon felt that same as many Oilers fans, that this team plays favourites. It also looks like MacT felt that Garon was not a number 1 Goalie.

    Why do so many teams feel that way about Garon? Maybe MacT is correct?

  50. Bank Shot says:

    “The natural talent though, that’s genetics…and that has not changed in the last century.”

    I think alot of it comes down to kids just playing way more hockey today. 9-10 year olds are playing year round, and going to things like the BRICK Super Novice tournament. You’ll see one or two names a year from the Edmonton team that turn into NHLers.

    I think players today are just more talented due to more practice in youth in addition to having superior physical training.

  51. PunjabiOil says:

    And re: Garon – WTF was Gregor posting over at ON? He was the one with the “inside info” about a contract extension offer.

    It’s typical of the Edmonton media. Try to leave a bad impression of a player that signs or gets traded elsewhere.

  52. hunter1909 says:

    “I think players today are just more talented due to more practice in youth in addition to having superior physical training.”

    Talent you’re born with.

    “In fact, if you plucked a 1984 greztky out of his time and dropped him on a team today, I bet he would be up to speed in a week or two and be fairly dominant”

    Fairly dominant? By that logic, you could stick Ethan Moreau in 1984 and he’d win the Hart.

  53. Doogie2K says:

    You can presume that there has been some change in the Genetic Makeup of humans, but there is no evidence for that.

    Nor could there be, because it’s scientifically impossible for that to happen over, at most, one full generation. Maybe 500-1000 years from now.

    I think players today are just more talented due to more practice in youth in addition to having superior physical training.

    And better practice, too. Coaching methods have come along quite a bit in 30 years.

  54. Bruce says:

    Put Gretzky in today’s NHL and he would win the Art Ross Trophy. Given the improvements in goaltending and defensive systems he would likely only win by 25 or 35 points instead of 75, but his genetic type has not been seen in the NHL since the day he retired.

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