This One’s For You

When I was young I thought Bobby Orr could fly. In fact, our television broke in spring 1970 and in listening to the SCF it happened: the CBC announcer said “and Orr flies through the air and scores!” and even that famous photo isn’t as good as the image in my brain.

Bobby Orr was my hero, so of course the Montreal Canadiens were Lex Luthor, Solomon Grundy and J. Wilbur Wolfingham all rolled into one.

I’ve never learned to love the Habs, they’ve always been the enemy. It makes little sense, since I could not love a team more than I did (do) the Expos and all I ever hear about Montreal is that it gushes beautiful women from every street corner.

And yet, all I see when Montreal plays hockey are that Sam Pollock arranged the 1967 expansion draft so he could screw the league, the Habs got every damn call they ever needed in my lifetime and at exactly the right time.

As a child I would worry over the Bruins, Superman had bad knees and you never knew when the other Bruins were going to go overboard with the brawling and cost a game. They didn’t have a Bernie Parent (although Cheevers and Johnston were very good) and they had a center who would often skate through all three sets of wingers before Hodge and Cashman returned for a second shift.

I dreamed of a 4-game sweep in the playoffs. It never came in my childhood and barely came in my adult life. But it’s here and it’s beautiful. So, in my own way I’d like to remember Bobby Orr tonight. He was a man touched by God, and the Bruins have done something that was impossible in his own time: beat the Habs in 4.

Best of luck to Carey Price, who is a good kid in a bad situation and to Bob Gainey who looks like a man on the way to Shawshank based on the television images. The fans? Stop booing the American anthem and stop blaming your goalie assclowns. You were never good enough this season and 100 too-many-men penalties couldn’t have saved you.

Own it. You’ve earned it.

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65 Responses to "This One’s For You"

  1. HBomb says:

    The Bruins are high on my list of teams I like (I may wear my Patrice Bergeron jersey tomorrow in celebration of this feat), and even though I’ve never had a reason to hate them besides arrogant fans with a sense of entitlement, I cannot cheer for the Canadiens.

    This sweep is somewhat similar to the Red Sox coming back from 3-0 down against the Yankees in 2004. It’s made sweeter by who it’s against.

    Damn, is there a better city to live in sports-wise than Boston? The Bruins look poised to go deep, the Celtics would be in the hunt for a repeat if not for the Garnett injury, the Patriots have won three Lombardi trophies since 2002, and the Red Sox are the model franchise in MLB.

    As for the whole booing the national anthem thing? It’s f’n karma for Habs fans to lose in this fashion. Assholes.

  2. knighttown says:

    In a market that will not tolerate anything but wholesale changes and with a roster ripe with free agents, the Habs carcass is about to be picked over.

    Here’s who IS signed (that matters):

    Markov, Hamrlik, Price, Halak, A. Kostitsyn

    That leaves an RFA group of:

    Higgins and Plekanec (plus some 4th liners)

    and a UFA group of:

    Koivu, Kovalev, Tanguay, Lang, Komisarek, Schneider, Bouillion, Dandenault

    If you believe in buying low, there are some interesting names there. I though Komi was a Top 5 defensive defenseman before Lucic beat the shit out of him. Is he prime for a rebound? Koivu ain’t no number one center but he’d solve our need for another vet down the middle. As would Lang. Tanguay at 1LW?

    If you had the guts to sign Komi for 10 years at a shockingly low cap hit it could work out…or it could be the worst contract in the league.

  3. Fake Craig McTavish says:

    LT.

    As a staunch Bruins fans myself, I used to daydream that every Montreal defenseman was mortally wounded at the same time and the Bruins could skate at will through the entire team and beat the bastards 19-0.

    But this will do just fine.

    I still hate Cournoyer to a degree that isn’t healthy for a grown man.

  4. Mike says:

    Wow, LT. A little vitriol tonight. I like it.

    Speaking of picking over the carcass – maybe Carey Price is suddenly available cheap? Would/could/should we take a swing?

  5. HBomb says:

    If I want a player out of that Montreal UFA class, it’s Komisarek.

    I’d bring him in and dangle Souray for an upgrade at forward without batting an eye. Probably wouldn’t cost a tremendous amount, say 4.5 million per season?

  6. HBomb says:

    Delicious justice – Kessel was CLEARLY offside on the 3rd Bruin goal.

    Habs fans will bitch about that non-call as if it cost them the damn series, but the simple fact is that the Bruins are just the flat-out better team this year (and it’s not even close).

  7. Lowetide says:

    Steve: You’re a gentleman. Thanks.

  8. Icecastles says:

    Excellent post, LT. Damn you’re old though! :)

    This one is dedicated to the Hawks and the Bruins, may they meet in the SCF. First time I’ve ever rooted for two American teams when the the Great White North was still in the mix.

  9. Dennis says:

    There was a time when a 4-0 sweep of the Habs would make my fucking month. But right now I’m apathetic towards that franny because the current team isn’t good enough to worry about.

    That’s the ultimate insult to any fan of any team. It’s like when you have your ladyfriend at the bar with you and someone else is hitting on her but you don’t even bother to interject. You’re basically telling the guy it’s not worth your time because he’s got no chance.

    The same goes for the Leaves, FTM, but it’s gonna be fun to root for their spring demises once Burke/Wilson gets them back into the playoffs.

    The Habs fans have a killer sense of entitlement and their treatment of Price is gonna put Gainey in a bind. But, give them some credit, they are still passionate and their lack of apathy keeps the coffers full and keeps any owner happy.

    I dare say the Oilers owner is one more year of missing the playoffs away from seeing what true apathy really is. The fans still care enough that right now passion’s just beginning to exhibit itself in the form of a little hate and that could continue though ’10 if the team doesn’t get more exciting or doesn’t nestle itself in the warming enclave of a playoff spot.

    But if we miss again predict you’ll see comparative tumbleweeds come 2011 and say what you like about Habs fans – and I have and will continue to do so – they are always gonna show up.

  10. Black Dog says:

    Nice.

  11. Black Dog says:

    Speaking of nice the Blackhawks have just scored three straight to tie the Flames.

    Ha.

  12. mattwatt says:

    Lowetide,

    I thought one of the greatest pieces of literature I have ever read was your take on the Oilers and how it related to Roger and Hammerstein. Beautiful writing.

    Although this latest post is not that, it is a really damn good one if you ask me. Thank you for making my day.

  13. Garnet says:

    I hadn’t expected a Solomon Grundy reference. Really, though, he’s more of a Flyer type.

  14. doritogrande says:

    Carey Price is one now trade demand away from making the Avalanche contenders for another decade again. Pray that Bob Gainey isn’t as much an idiot as the GM of the Habs circa 1995.

  15. Schitzo says:

    Woo, school done. Drunk now. Fucking blackhawks.

    that is all.

  16. Bohologo says:

    LT writes: “all I ever hear about Montreal is that it gushes beautiful women from every street corner.”

    Having lived in Montreal for two years, I can confirm this impression. However, it is also true that during my time in Montreal, only women from Toronto would agree to go out with me. Alas.

    Finally, having spent two years with Habs fans (who make Flames fans look civil and reasonable in comparison), I too am indulging in some schadenfreude. Plus ca change, plus la meme chose, mes amis…

  17. hunter1909 says:

    Orr wasn’t touched by God, he just used to run 5 miles a day when he was 12 years old.

    It’s called discipline.

    Too bad he was too good to play with anyone his own age, because all that getting knocked around by older kids took its toll on him.

    Even though I never was able to see him play, I always rated him higher than Gretzky. He could fight(rated by George Chuvalo as the 2nd toughest fighter in hockey), and how many defencemen ever seem to end up winning the scoring race?

    Oh yeah, he married a babe, who, knowing ths score, didn’t need to be put ahead of his(Oiler) fans.

  18. Phil says:

    I’ve been reading you for a long time LT, and I’ve rarely seen you talk what could be termed as ‘smack’.

    But when you do, it is beautiful.

  19. St George says:

    But if we miss again predict you’ll see comparative tumbleweeds come 2011 and say what you like about Habs fans – and I have and will continue to do so – they are always gonna show up.Not true. A few years ago, pre-Gainey, the Habs were rudderless and near the bottom of the standings. During the final pre-Gainey season, I remember the Habs playing in front of empty seats on HNIC more than once.

  20. Bruce says:

    how many defencemen ever seem to end up winning the scoring race?
    Hunter: How many forwards ever seem to end up winning the scoring race by over 60 points? Wayne Gretzky did that six years in a row.

    Even though I never was able to see him play, I always rated him higher than Gretzky.Agree Orr was awesome, but the Great One was pretty special too. Different positions, different eras, difficult choice. Who was “better”, Rembrandt or van Gogh? Bach or Mozart? Shakespeare or Neruda?

  21. Icecastles says:

    Bruce:

    van Gogh.

    Mozart.

    Neruda.

    Gretzky.

    I’m no fence-sitter. And Gretzky is like the Beatles… so far beyond comparison, that you can’t help but want to find ways to compare. But the sheer number of records, some of which may end up the only NHL records that will stand forever, speak for themselves.

    His hair is another story… though I suppose you’ve got to give the guy credit for keeping the same poofy quasi-Luke Skywalker hairstyle his entire life. I guess.

  22. HBomb says:

    Two guys from before my time that I wish I could have seen play were on opposite sides of the Habs/Bruins rivalry, albeit in different eras.

    One is Orr. The other is Jean Beliveau.

    Even though he was WELL past his prime, I saw Lafleur play in 1991 for the Nordiques as part of his farewell tour.

  23. hunter1909 says:

    Bruce: Of course you’re right.

    I used to prefer watching the Messier/Anderson line, since they were merely as good as any top line I’ve ever seen play in the NHL. The Gretzky/Kurri line were like angels sent by God to enlighten us, and therefore I never could get quite the same handle on them.

    To this day I’m still amazed at how bitter I remain after his leaving town. Still happy as anything he never won any more cups, and still blaming him for letting his name be prostituted to the point where now we’ve got all those absymal southern franchises, perpetually sucking up so many top draft picks, and of course the odd cup which goes with that territory.

  24. Dennis says:

    I read Brunt’s Orr book and I don’t remember there being a lot about his training and eating habits but I’d be willing to bet he was above the curve. The first thing I’d say is the guy was an other worldly talent and that’s why he could make other players look like comparative monkeys. The other thing is with players showing up to camp 15 and 20 pounds overweight and smoking and drinking and eating garbage, anyone that didn’t do those things would have an advantage.

    You see some of the goals he used to score and those absolutely wouldn’t happen these days. Same thing with 80′s Gretzky; all players are at least prepared these days if not skilled.

    Take Rick Nash for instance. I was reading through the Jackets coverage the other day and I came across a two day food journal he compiled for the paper. I once cut from being in the 260′s down to just over 200 and I thought that I was eating super clean; it was basically low carb and high protein and three meals and two snacks. And I also set an oppressive cardio schedule and I did my weight training at the start in density mode – that’s where you lower the number of pounds you lift but you only take 30 seconds between reps.

    Anyway, I ended up in pretty decent shape but what I did doesn’t even begin to compare to what Nash is doing and you have to think that like 90% of all NHL players are doing that these days. So, I’d say guys like Orr and Janet were fellows who were either prepared, once-in-a-lifetime talents and/or guys who practiced their craft obsessively.

    One last thing on training and discipline.

    Google Esquire and Todd Marionvich and settle in for a decent little read.

  25. Cornelius Hardenbergh says:

    Thank you for this, wonderful read.

  26. Smarmy Boss says:

    True enough Dennis.

    The greats of the game are always ahead of the curve.

    I read an interview of Ty Cobb and he talks obsessively of clean living, eating right, not drinking, and getting a good night’s rest. He often chastised teammates for not doing so.

    People marveled at Cobb’s leg strength he attributed it to the long hunting trips he went on in the offseason traipsing through snow. He also wore weights on his legs in spring training. Said it made him feel much faster when he took them off.

    As to the Bruins. One of my best memorabilia items is a leather bound book of the Boston Bruins that was autographed by several Bruin greats including my fave Wayne Cashman. Over the years, I have bought autos and pasted them. Phil Kessel being the latest.

  27. pboy says:

    I dare say the Oilers owner is one more year of missing the playoffs away from seeing what true apathy really is. The fans still care enough that right now passion’s just beginning to exhibit itself in the form of a little hate and that could continue though ’10 if the team doesn’t get more exciting or doesn’t nestle itself in the warming enclave of a playoff spot.

    But if we miss again predict you’ll see comparative tumbleweeds come 2011 and say what you like about Habs fans – and I have and will continue to do so – they are always gonna show up.Great point about the “coming apathy” unless they can show the fans that they are at least pointing this team in the right direction.

    I read that article on Marinovich last week and it’s so enlightening when it gets into his drug problems and how he’s been battling those demons for 20+ years.

  28. pboy says:

    I read an interview of Ty Cobb and he talks obsessively of clean living, eating right, not drinking, and getting a good night’s rest. He often chastised teammates for not doing so.

    People marveled at Cobb’s leg strength he attributed it to the long hunting trips he went on in the offseason traipsing through snow. He also wore weights on his legs in spring training. Said it made him feel much faster when he took them off.Smarmy Boss: Have you read Al Stump’s book on Ty Cobb? One of the best sports books ever written, IMO. The numbers that Cobb put up over his career were ridiculous and don’t seem real at all.

  29. dstaples says:

    At least former or simmering Bruins fans root for the Oilers.

    Habs fans who live in Edmonton, what is wrong with them?

  30. hunter1909 says:

    Funny how modern players train so hard, but in the end comparatively still often blow.

    How about if they hold an exhibition game, where the goalies get to play in 1965 goalie equipment(masks optional), and the skaters play with wooden sticks and no helmets?

    And 1965 rules enforced by the single ref.

    Their comments after the game would be astounding.

  31. Quinn says:

    This is an interesting read, both the article and the comments.

    I did not get into hockey until my late teens, and when I did start watching I quickly grew to despise the Leafs. As a corollary then, I began to cheer for the Habs as an alternative Canadian team (pre-Ottawa, post-Winnipeg) because there was a rivalry between the teams. The enemy of my enemy and all that.

    So, I am surprised at the vitriol coming out towards the Habs here, though I am definitely supportive of the reasons given. I know about how boorish fans of opposing teams are in other teams rinks, (I have actually stopped wearing my Oilers jersey to home Flames games, because I can’t stand the yobs walking drunk around the rink yelling like amphetamine-ladden baboons). Are Habs fans really much worse? And is that the source of the antipathy.

    Although, to the fans in Montreal proper booing anthems, rioting, etc., well, to them I say, NUTS, and good riddance too.

    (This was written in part to give Blackoil a chance to visit dictionary.com again!)

  32. eyebleaf says:

    *STANDING OVATION*

    Au revoir, les Glorieux…

  33. NBOilerFan says:

    I also grew up a huge habs hater.

    Here in New Brunswick at least 80% (if not higher) of the majority are either Leafs or Habs fans (my brother being a Habs fan also).

    My hate stems largely due to Claude Lemieux. My god I hated that man then (still do), and I swear he never took a penalty that he felt he deserved.

  34. PPP says:

    LT – Congratulations on getting to see your first rival swept by your first team.

    St. George – Not true. A few years ago, pre-Gainey, the Habs were rudderless and near the bottom of the standings. During the final pre-Gainey season, I remember the Habs playing in front of empty seats on HNIC more than once.
    Actually, they never stopped buying tickets
    . There is a myth that Habs fans had something to do with the franchise kind of turning things around but that had more to do with new ownership, a tough economy, and a better front office. The fans never left and they never will.

  35. Dennis says:

    NBOiler: I think in your description of Claude, you also nailed the entire Wings team from about 95-07.

    I swear to God that no one enjoyed driving Yzerman off the ice for his last game more than I did. The guy was a Selanne-type Oilers killer and guys like him and Shanahan never took a penalty they deserved. It took nearly 15 seasons for the guy to win a Cup and Federov was THE two-way player on that team and it always drove me nuts how everyone fawned over Yzerman.

    BTW, I hate the Habs because of the sense of entitlement that’s carried by the fans. It comes from the org and fans take it in stride and thus the hatefulness. I have always compared the Oil disfavourably with Cuntreal in terms how how fond they are of looking into the past; plus, the hubris in the face of something other than success syncs them up pretty well as well.

    Hunter: it was youthful pettiness that was funnily enough somewhat confirmed later on but right from that day in Aug I always had the feeling that Jayne had a lot much to do with his departure than anyone let on.

    The way Joe Murphy left town saw me quit on the club until they picked up Cujo ~40 months so it wasn’t like I didn’t think Puck was a knob. But, I always remembered something Slats said along the lines that he went to Puck and said he was walking if the deal was done and then he went and told Jayne he could make it stop if he wanted it to.

    Jayne said no and I have never forgiven him. Just like you I wished he would never get the fifth ring and the ’93 Finals is the only time in my life I watched a big event and didn’t root for anyone.

    I’m one of those guys that has to find a reason to root for someone in order to watch a game. most times it’s old hatred and now these days it’s more for betting purposes but in ’93 I hated both teams so fucking much that I was uncomfortable watching it.

    Finally, another plea for people to read that Marinovich piece.

    I just wish I was around for his draft party.

  36. Bruce says:

    //Who was “better”, Rembrandt or van Gogh? Bach or Mozart? Shakespeare or Neruda?
    //

    Bruce:

    van Gogh.

    Mozart.

    Neruda.

    Gretzky.

    Ice: Funny thing, I agree with you fairly unequivocally on the first three on the old theory that “I’m no art (music/poetry) critic but I know what I like”. But when it comes to the hockey greats I find it harder to choose. I’m biased towards Gretzky cuz I watched him live over 500 times and he took my breath away many more times than that, whereas I never had the good fortune to see Orr live even once. I did however follow his entire career on the small screen, and he was truly extraordinary.

    Ask me who was the greatest defenceman I’ve ever seen, and I will instantly answer Bobby Orr. The greatest centre, Wayne Gretzky. The greatest winger, Gordie Howe. But ask me who is the greatest hockey player of the nearly half-century (gasp) that I’ve followed the game, and I find myself equivocating.

    But the sheer number of records, some of which may end up the only NHL records that will stand forever, speak for themselves. When Gretzky retired he held 61 NHL records. Today (to the best of my knowledge) he holds 62, having added the career points-per-game mark thanks to Mario’s comeback and inevitable decline by this metric.

    However, when it comes to NHL records that will stand forever, Joe Malone’s 2.2 goals per game has stood from 1917-18 ’til now, and it’s hard to envision anybody beating Howe’s mark of playing NHL games at age 52. Goaltending records like George Hainsworth’s 22 shutouts and 0.98 GAA, Alex Connell’s 6 consecutive shutouts, and especially Glenn Hall’s 503 consecutive starts are sure to stand the test of time also. But in sheer volume of unassailable records the Great One stands alone.

  37. hunter1909 says:

    Hate the habs fans? Why, they’re some of the best in hockey, if not THE best. Ditto Leafs fans.

    Now Flames fans, them I hate. Not as much as the players, who I REALLY hate.

    As for Nucks fans, they sound like virgins talking about sex so nothing to even worry about.

  38. PunjabiOil says:

    Gregor thinks Roloson won’t be back:

    Gregor, what are the Oilers going to do with Roloson. Is he coming back?
    —Alan on the southside

    Right now I think it is doubtful. It sounds like Roloson wants a two-year deal, and there is NO chance the Oilers will sign him for two years. If he would agree to a one-year contract I could see them coming to an agreement, but right now Roloson and his agent are looking for a two-year pact.

    The risk, along with the inevitable decline in salary cap for the 2010/11 season, won’t allow the Oilers to sign him. I was told straight out by an agent that a two-year deal for Roloson in Edmonton WON’T happen .

  39. Smarmy Boss says:

    I did read Stump’s bio of Cobb and I didn’t really like it. He seemed to have an axe to grind with Cobb and created this embellished persona that Cobb was some sort of monster that everyone who ever knew him hated.

  40. Bruce says:

    re: Roli. Last time we signed him to a 3-year, 8-figure contract, during the life of which he delivered Zero playoff appearances.

    Yeah I know, I know, many mitigating factors, but it’s not like he’s carried our team anywhere since the Magic Spring. He’s turning 40 next year and we’re turning our eyes to the future, so let’s move on. But we better find a Good replacement.

  41. PunjabiOil says:

    I have no problem with a 2 year deal if it’s reasonable dollars.

    If we’re looking at external recruitment, obviously a guy like Kari Lehtonen should be considered. I’d go as high as Cogliano + 2nd + 5th for him.

    For short term solutions – Craig Anderson or Martin Biron should be considered.

    What’s clear is that JDD is not even an NHL backup – and DD doesn’t look like he’ll fare marginally better.

  42. PunjabiOil says:

    It’s also probably time to stop making excuses for Dubnyk. A .906 SV% is terrible for a 3rd year pro – especially given Leland Irving posted a .912 in his first year.

    They got a gem.

  43. Bruce says:

    … Cobb was some sort of monster that everyone who ever knew him hated.That’s pretty accurate. Haven’t read the bio, did watch the movie “Cobb” with Tommy Lee Jones, but mostly am basing my comment from first-hand anecdotal accounts of Cobb from the seminal book The Glory of Their Times: The Story Of The Early Days Of Baseball Told By The Men Who Played It by Lawrence Ritter. This wonderful read of early baseball and circa-1900 Americana is Highly recommended to anybody fortunate enough to find it. It consists of a series of biographical interviews with early ballplayers largely overlapping Cobb’s generation (1905-28); indeed it was apparently the death of Cobb himself that inspired Ritter to interview others of that era before they all passed. Every mention of Cobb in the book, from opponents and teammates alike, speaks to him being an incredible ballplayer and a despicable human being. Didn’t seem to be a whole lot of embellishment required, he really was a monster.

    (Didn’t stop Wayne Gretzky from naming his son after him …)

    Closest thing to Cobb in the annals of hockey would be Eddie Shore. Great players both, due largely to their indomitable will and drive, but by all accounts both were compleat pricks.

  44. Traktor says:

    “What’s clear is that JDD is not even an NHL backup”

    How so?

    He had a .901 SV% last year.

    To say he’s clearly not backup material is silly. He may or may not be but at this point you don’t know squat.

    “It’s also probably time to stop making excuses for Dubnyk. A .906 SV% is terrible for a 3rd year pro”

    A .906 SV% on the worst team in hockey is pretty damn impressive IMO.

  45. doritogrande says:

    Green, Chara and Lidstrom finalists for the Norris Trophy. As per TSN.ca

    I love reading through the comments of lesser boards. The fact that Lidstrom has already won 6 Norris’ should not be any reason to hand it out to someone else. Dude hasn’t won 6 trophies because he played on a stacked team. He made the team stacked, simple as that. Green had a fantastic year and that shouldn’t be taken away from him, but he doesn’t have the defensive acumen yet to be comparable to Lidstrom. Thanks for coming out Zdeno, pick up your parting gift at the door.

    On Oilers goaltending: Unless the deal is for two years loaded 2.5, 0.5 and we have the ability to LTIR his ass after the first season, there is no sense of a two year deal. This man is not Dominik Hasek, but he’s going to be a great goaltending coach one day.

    @ Punjabi: Don’t you think you’re being a little hard on Dubnyk? How does that .906 compare to Marek Schwartz? Al Montoya? Looks to me like they picked the second best goalie of round 1. Also, given that he played on the worst team in the AHL and still put up a sv% north of .900 I think he’s developing just fine. Yes, there are the likes of Steve Mason and Carey Price you can compare to, but how many goalies completely bypass/outperform the AHL within three years? I’d be comparing Dubnyk to someone more similar to the development path of someone like Chris Mason than a Leland Irving.

  46. Bruce says:

    PJO: Beware drinking the Koolaid of the Church of SavePercentology. It’s one of the better metrics of goaltenders, but it is FAR from comprehensive. The quality of those shots is very much a function of the team in front of him, and then there’s the whole grey area of shot prevention to which some goalies contribute in a positive way and others negatively. Haven’t seen enough of Dubnyk to judge yet.

  47. godot10 says:

    Roloson is fine as long as it it one year at a time. One moves on to another goaltender if he insists on a multiyear deal.

    Pay him $4 million on a one year deal if necessary, but NO two year deal.

  48. geowal says:

    While I don’t share the strong anti-Hab sentiment on show here, I was happy to see Price’s ‘gesture’ last night, even though I know it’s going to be talked about by the media for a month.

    And while Gainey wasn’t too happy about it, I loved his reference to the Montreal crowd as “bullies.” Ala: The goals weren’t soft goals, we’re soft defensively, so shut the hell up.

    If only the players had not bothered with the centre ice wave goodbye tribute thing. They booed them off the ice, why hang around and coax a cheer out of them?

  49. PunjabiOil says:

    @ Punjabi: Don’t you think you’re being a little hard on Dubnyk?

    Nope.

    How does that .906 compare to Marek Schwartz? Al Montoya? Looks to me like they picked the second best goalie of round 1While that may be true, on it’s own it doesn’t mean much.

    The only thing that matters is whether Dubnyk will be an NHL goaltender. With 3 seasons of pro experience, he should be doing better.

    Weak team? Sure.

    Progess? The numbers demonstrate negligible, if at all.

  50. knighttown says:

    re: Roli. Last time we signed him to a 3-year, 8-figure contract, during the life of which he delivered Zero playoff appearances.

    One theory I’ve been working on lately is that the Oilers didn’t have ENOUGH contracts expiring this year. Is it coincidence that Roloson and Grebeshkov had dynamite years while guys like Nilsson and Horcoff struggled? Sure, there were lots of other good years by people with contracts (Souray, Gilbert) but I would love to see one of you numbers guys compare a player’s performance in the year prior to, and following the signing of a new contract.

    We’ll call it “Project Kovalev”.

  51. hunter1909 says:

    Ever since Lowe started handing out monopoly money contracts, I’ve been aware that eventually this team would eventually run out of money to pay real top quality players.

    My question is: Assuming Katz thinks the same way as I do, who exactly do they buy out?

    Because unless something radical happens, it all might as well be 1997, for a very long time(although I have to admit don’t pay much attention to the length of some of these contracts).

  52. Bruce says:

    LT: Seems your post is getting play on Mirtle‘s blog.

    Saskhab over there points out that the Bruins also swept the Habs four straight back in 1992, so this isn’t a first.

  53. kris says:

    The oilers.nhl.com website has just posted the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen. Ever. I mean, they normally post inane stuff, but this is something different:

    “What if the Oilers -and Selanne, for some reason- owned a restaurant?”

    It’s like a Dali painting or something.

  54. spOILer says:

    Orr was my god too, growing up. I was always “Number Four, Bobby Orr” on the backyard rinks.

    Except I liked Kohos, and Orr was a Victoriaville fan with that signature black stripe of tape in the middle of the blade.

    At the beginning, I didn’t hate the Habs. I admired Cournoyer’s speed, Savard’s spinoramas, Robinson’s size, Lafleur’s panache…

    But by the end of the 70s, and after a few bucketfuls of tears, the Habs to me were worse than The Huns, The Nazis, The Japs, The Mongol Horde.

    But with regards to Mr. Orr himself, the worst moment was the minor penalty with a little more than 2 minutes to go against the Flyers, in I believe, the 1975 playoffs. My Dad’s favorite player was Bobby Clarke. We didn’t get a long very well that Spring.

    And that began a stretch of abysmal futility for my teams… Sox losing to the Reds in 7, Riders losing to the Roughies on the Gabriel catch, and the domination of the Habs over the Bruins during their dynasty. Heartbreak after heartbreak.

    I also remember Gilles Gilbert being a pretty decent Bruin goalie during the 70s too, LT — when he was healthy. My Mum thought he was better-looking than Orr, which is saying something.

  55. bookie says:

    Ok, I just went to look at “what if the Oilers owned a restaurant” because I was going to say that you were being a litte too harsh at an effort at light heartedness” BUT that is the stupidest thing I have ever seen.

    The idea doesn’t offend me, but the execution is pathetic. I mean, they think of three food names, have no details and then its like “hmmm what other Oiler name sounds good with food….Ah F#%k it, just put Temmu Selanne’s name in there and lets go home”

    The idea was silly, the execution pathetic. Here are my suggestions.

    Penner’s Phantastic Pizza – First we make a fantasic thick crust using real lard instead of oil, then we use a tangy sauce with tomatoes, olive oil, and bacon bits. Following that we run down to MacDonald’s and buy a bunch of Big Macs. We put the Big Macs i the sauce and then put a load of mozza and cheddar cheese on it. We top it all off with light spray of butter to make it glisten.

    Schremp’s Sizzling Shrimp – We take some Shrimp and cook it in whine…nuff said…

    MacT’s Blended Borsch – Sometimes we mix tomatoes with carrots and beets, other times we mix onions with Tabasco sauce and lemons, one time we mixed beer with ice cream and catsup….It doesn’t make F#$king sense, but What the hell am I supposed to do with this crap that Lowe brought home from the store!!! (no longer offered)…

  56. spOILer says:

    With Orr gracing LT’s front page, and the Norris candidates being announced, anyone else think that this year Lidstrom doesn’t win it?

  57. kris says:

    Bookie:

    My thoughts exactly. I thought for a second that a five year old might like it, but really even five year olds are too sophisticated for this.

    It’s weird to think someone in the oilers PR-website department thought, “Hey, isn’t it funny that some Oilers have Italian names. Those names sound like pasta dishes. Hahahaha. And Cammalleri sounds like Calamari. I bet our fans want to see a poster based on this.”

    This is clear evidence -clearer than the average draft record or poor special teams- that Oilers brass cannot hire competent or talented people. :)

  58. PunjabiOil says:

    just put Temmu Selanne’s name in there and lets go homeIt’s the Oilers vieled attempt to get Selanne to demand a trade request to Edmonton. Duh.

  59. PDO says:

    That’s a very, very, tough way for CBJ to lose. Ouch.

  60. Psyche says:

    LT, FYI the most recent post under ‘Ciphering’ is spam. Just giving you a heads up.

  61. Dennis says:

    After listening to Daniels and Redmond doing tonight’s Wings clincher, I am convinced they are as bad as Hughson and Garrett ever were.

    Also, let’s see if we can pry-ce Carey out of Mtl.

    Finally, I’m not sure if there’s a sister NHL study but BP did the requisite work mlb-wise and found there was no correlation between contract years and career years.

  62. Lowetide says:

    Psyche: Got it, thanks.

    Dennis: I’d love to see Price here.

  63. Bruce says:

    After listening to Daniels and Redmond doing tonight’s Wings clincher, I am convinced they are as bad as Hughson and Garrett ever were.Redmond: “They’ve lost the steam out of their energy.”

    There were a few more laugh out loud lines from both of them, a few of them even good ones but more malapropisms than not. Dizzy Dean and Pee Wee Reese they are not.

    That’s a very, very, tough way for CBJ to lose. Good to know the Detroit Rule is still in the books. Even the linesmen are in on it.

    Welcome to the playoffs, Columbus. Now bend over, you’re playing the Wings.

    Wonderful game in Jersey tonight. That series is a beaut.

  64. HBomb says:

    Favorable calls aside, I cannot bring myself to not cheer for the Wings (at least when they’re not playing the Oilers).

    Best damn coach in the business, some absolute beauty players (including three of my absolute favorites in Hossa, Zetterberg and Lidstrom, not to mention Franzen who is starting to grow on me as some super-Euro version of Smyth), great player procurement, history of success.

    They’re in a class by themselves, even if they employ a couple of absolute wastes of genetic material in the form of Kirk Maltby and Chris Chelios.

  65. Art Vandelay says:

    Excellent post, LT. I grew up a Bruins fan among a sea of Habs bandwagoners. It was awful. And the Too Many Men game was the awfullest.

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