09 November 2007

Game day preview, stuff from around the league

From the AJC:

"Yesterday I didn't feel good at all," Kovalchuck said. "It was a little bit scary actually; I couldn't even go in the bathroom. Those doctors and trainers are unbelievable. I think I'm going to be ready to go tomorrow."
Does it scare the crap out of anyone else that he'll be playing tonight? Back = core. If you fuck that up, you could prematurely end your season. We'd rather risk losing the games and let Kovy take the time to be absolutely certain he is at 100%, rather than saying "I can play" because we all know hockey players are like the dude in Monty Python who kept saying "It's just a flesh wound!" Even we have been guilty of saying, we need points in October and November so we don't have to fight in April. But you know what? We'd like Kovy to be active in April just in case we do have to fight for those points.

Pavelec will get the start tonight against the Kittens. Reading NHL.com's preview, they don't really know what to say about it, so someone slapped a whole bunch of stats together. Here's the thing. The Panthers suck. Sorry if you like them, but they're a joke of a team. The only things they've got going for them are Jay Bouwmeester on D, Vokoun in net, and Jokinen up front. (coincidentally, we just went to check something on their site and see that those three are also nominated for the All-Star balloting... coincidence?) Not even the great Roberto Luongo could make this team look good, and Todd Bertuzzi (who, we won't lie, we hoped would've gotten lost in Alligator Alley and eaten) opted to spend most of his season there injured/healing rather than put on that sweater. Vokoun is the only reason they've won any games at all. Against the Thrashers, he's 1-3-1-0 lifetime. He hasn't really seen this team much having just come over from the Western Conference.

We're sure some uppity Panthers fan (do the Panthers HAVE fans?) will find this and post some snotty comment, so go ahead. We throw down the gauntlet and welcome it. Prove to us how the Panthers are anything resembling competent without those three guys, and we'll show you a pee-wee team that'll hand them their asses after putting on a clinic.

If the boys bring their A-game, and play like they can, then we'll pick the Thrash by 2.

30 Games in 30 Nights. Go check him out. How jealous are you of this guy? Probably about as jealous as we are. This might be the coolest NHL journey in the history of evar. Steve will be in Atlanta on 19 December for the game against his beloved Bolts. Drop him a line to welcome him to A-town, and hey, if you've got an extra ticket, why not offer it up?

Love him or hate him, you have to give big ups to Eric "The Big E" Lindros. Yesterday during his retirement announcement, he made a $5m (what's that, like a buck eight-two American?) donation to the London Health Sciences Foundation. It is the largest single donation by any professional Canadian athlete in history. Big, big ups, Big E. We here at FWH followed your career from the beginning. We've always rooted for you, even if we were quietly laughing along with the jokes. We hope you are at least nominated for the Hall of Fame, if not inducted, but realise that chances are slim-to-none on you being awarded entry. Best of luck in all your future endeavors, Mr. Lindros.

Did you hear the one about the Caps beating the Sens 4-1?

No, that's it. It's not a joke. We're not sure what got into who, but wow. No really, wow. The Sens lost Anton "I stop pucks" Volchenkov early in the 1st, and perhaps that was as big a blow to the team's collective psyche as it was to Ray Emery. But the old adage that even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while still holds true. The Sens were due for their 2nd (!!!) loss of the season, and it was the Caps that handed it to them. Props to the Caps, hallelujah, holy shit, where's the Tylenol?

While we're on subject of the Caps, here's an english translation* of an interview Alexander Ovechkin gave to Sovetskiy Sport after the loss to the Thrasher on Tuesday:
What do you think of Kovalchuk's play in the last few games?
Yeah, I heard about his two hat tricks in a row.
Congratulations, Ilya, you're great. I never even doubted that he could score four [in a row].

Statistically, Ovechkin has scored more points against Atlanta, and Kovalchuk has the most points against Washington. Why? Do the Thrashers not cover you enough?
Come on, they don't give me that much space. But today Atlanta's goaltender, Pavelec, had a great game. He was stopping incredible shots.
If you ever, and we mean ever, have the opportunity to sit down and talk to this guy, take it. He is all around class, and one of the nicest athletes we've ever had the pleasure to meet.

* We did not do this translation ourselves, and can not be held responsible for its accuracy. Apologies in advance if the translation is incorrect, but we are currently unable to provide a translation of our own.

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