Hump-day Hater Report 3-4-09
Toews hates Staal
Not only was Jordan Staal picked ahead of Jonathon Toews in their respective draft year, but now Staal is also finishing ahead of him head to head. When I say that, I mean with his team as the Pens defeated the Hawks last weekend. Maybe it was the match-up with Toews that got Staal revved up, since then he has been playing great hockey and has seemed reignited with the addition of Chris Kunitz.
Staal contributed (wow, thatâ€™s a phrase Iâ€™ve not said in a long time) with a goal and an assist in the 5-4 overtime victory in Chicago.
Danny Briere hates coming back
In his long-anticipated return to the Philadelphia Flyers, Danny Briere was silenced. The star forward showed great hope in his three game stint with the AHL Philadelphia Phantoms, with whom he scored one goal and four assists. His return to the NHL, however, was not so successful.
Briere had no points, one shot, one penalty served (for holding the stick), recorded a -1 on the nightâ€¦all within 15 minutes of ice time in Sundayâ€™s 3-0 loss to New Jersey.
Kunitz = love
Iâ€™m sorry, I just had to get that in somewhere. Five points in three gamesâ€¦gottaâ€™ love it.
Crosby hates his groin
Four straight gamesâ€¦will he ever come back? Look on the bright side folks, heâ€™s not rushing it so he doesnâ€™t hurt it anymore. Besides, they seem to be doing pretty well without him for the time being. Not to say they donâ€™t need him.
The groin injury that has sidelined Sid was reportedly suffered during the Feb. 22 match-up with the Washington Capitals.
FSN: first period, Pens/Stars
No, thatâ€™s not a mistake, itâ€™s a simulation. That was FSN during the majority of the first period of play for Sundayâ€™s game between the Pens and Stars in Dallas. Due to the outage that occurred at the Fox Sports headquarters, which was reportedly felt nation-wide, those of us who watched (or technically didnâ€™t) missed Letangâ€™s beautiful goal. Thanks again FSN, stay sharp!
Steve Ott hates his teammates
As reported during the above mentioned Pens/Stars game, Dallas forward Steve Ott was suspended for one game, pending hearing, for intent to injure after the final buzzer of the Starsâ€™ game with Anaheim last Saturday. But this piece is about those teammates of Ottâ€™s who stood up to defend him and protect him in his â€œaltercationâ€ at the end of the game:
â€¦all zero of them. When Iâ€™m forced to use bad numerical grammar, you know somethingâ€™s going down. Now I understand the risk one takes if they involve themselves in an after-the-horn skirmish, but does that mean no one can stand up for the one guy who was willing to stand up for his whole team? (Let that sink in, it will make sense in a few seconds.)
Shame on you Dallas Stars, shame on you.
Malkin hates the three stars of the week
Usually, Iâ€™m upset with NHL.com for snubbing the Penguins on their three stars of the night, but this time they got it rightâ€¦even if itâ€™s not what Pensâ€™ fans want to see.
Evgeni Malkin came off a three point performance with one goal and two assists in Dallas on Sunday. Two timely assists and a game-winning goal are hard to topâ€¦but not on Sunday:
1. Jerome Iginla â€“ 2G, 3A in loss to Tampa Bay
2. Mark Recchi â€“ 5A in win over Calgary
3. Marty Brodeur â€“ second straight shutout since coming off his lengthy injury.
Good job NHL.comâ€¦for once. This doesnâ€™t mean you get off easy, Iâ€™ll still be watching.
I did get some good news recently when I learned that Sean Avery is going to be, once again, wearing a Broadway blue shirt. Why is this good you may ask? Sean Avery makes my job a lot easier. And if heâ€™s not going to get kicked out of the game, then I sincerely hope he continues to contribute to my little humble column in the near future.
The Rangers claimed Avery from Dallas on his re-entry waivers.
I know it sounds crazy, but the broadcast by Versus last night was actually a very good one. Though I almost fell asleep between periods since intermissions were so long, I did thoroughly enjoy the play-by-play and color commentary. Why arenâ€™t those guys on more often?
The Caps must really hate the Pens
â€¦if theyâ€™re willing to get embarrassed by the Carolina Hurricanes at home just to keep the pressure on Pittsburgh. In case you missed it, Washington lost 5-1 on their home ice last night with their lone goal coming from Alexander Semin on his kneesâ€¦which begs the question: does anyone on that team know how to score standing upright? Unfortunately, I think I know the answer.