Wednesday, April 25, 2012

No Longer Champs

Tonight was the end of the reign for the Boston Bruins. The Washington Capitals ousted the defending Stanley Cup Champions with a game-winning OT winner from Joel Ward, who picked up right where he left off last year in terms of clutch goal scoring in the playoffs. A great play made by Ward after Mike Knuble started a 2 on 1 rush which Ward shoveled past a screened Thomas.

This was a tremendous game as any Stanley Cup Game 7 that goes to overtime will be. Two plays will be remembered most in my eyes, aside from the winner. First, the GIF of Braden Holtby shoving Rich Peverley was outstanding. The other is Dennis Seidenberg laying out with his leg to block a wide open net for Alex Ovechkin and help send this game to OT. Luckily, we won't remember Shane Furlatt getting influenced by 20,000 referees and calling a penalty on the Caps.

Now, Washington moves on and in a year which they struggled for most of the season to make the playoffs, they might finally have the team capable of going far. Braden Holtby is in the Ken Dryden/Steve  Penney zone (we'll know at the end of his career which one he emulates), the Caps defense is better now that Tom Poti isn't one of those top 6 and they no longer need Ovechkin, Backstrom and Semin to score to win games. They have secondary scoring galore now it seems. They will be a tough out in the Eastern Semifinals.

Of course, I couldn't wrap this up without mentioning the ugly that occurs after the winner. Now, if you're not a hockey fan, Joel Ward is black. And him scoring a goal to knock the Boston Bruins out of the playoffs brought out the ugly side that, unfortunately, doesn't shock me as Boston fans have taken to Twitter, using the n-word to describe Ward (this link is very NSFW). I'm just hoping that if Wayne Simmonds scores a series winning goal, we won't see such a sad display that ruins the reputation of another city's sports fans.

Worst. Fans. Ever.

This video comes courtesy of Jimmy Traina's Twitter page. It's the top of the 8th inning of the Yankees-Rangers game in Arlington and we see a little kid crying. My first thought is the kid is hurt from a foul ball or something. Instead, we see something worse as he has the ball STOLEN from him. That's right. Just watch.

These two people are what I call the ultimate dickhead sports fan. I can't believe a little kid who's balling his eyes out can be ignored unintentionally, so they just didn't care. They probably didn't know the Rangers existed in the Dallas-Fort Worth area until 2010. There was a happy ending for the kid as he ended up getting a ball from someone in the Rangers bullpen, according to the YES telecast. However, since those two didn't give him the ball, they have to pay.

My punishment: they will always have the proverbial foul ball taken away from them for the rest of their lives. If they find a parking spot, I want someone to steal it. If they're in line at the grocery store, I hope the clerk closes his/her register when it's their turn. If they are in line for a movie, I hope the movie they want to see gets sold out. Anything to make the rest of their lives inconvenient. All I can think of George Constanza yelling "you know, we're living in a SOCIETY". Someone tell those two that.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Playoff Time

Tonight is the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the best playoffs in sports BY FAR. This will be pretty short as there will be tons of reaction every night of the playoffs. There is plenty to look forward to for any puck head; Flyers-Pens, every game airing on TV (NBC, NBCSN, CNBC, NHL Network), the Bruins quest to repeat, playoff beards, the Rangers trying to grab the latest New York bandwagon, the Canucks to avenge last year (especially if it's against Boston), and plenty more to when that Cup is presented.

As for my series picks, I'm going with Rangers in 6, Bruins in 5, Panthers in 7 and Flyers in 7 for the East. In the West, I have Canucks in 6, Sharks in 6, Blackhawks in 7 and the Red Wings in 7. The puck drops tonight and I can't wait. Enjoy the hockey, everyone.