Monday, December 28, 2009
Yes the holidays have been wonderful, thank you very much. Much eating and drinking and merrymaking have ensued. My only complaint thus far? There's no goddamned snow. This appears to be getting rectified right now.
We've spent the last few days pretty well hunkered down but in a couple of days we're heading up to see the folks for a few days. Plenty of snow up there.
And New Years' Eve? We're spending it at the Sudbury Curling Club. Oh, you bet. I've only curled once, when I was around twenty one. There was an annual event on Labour Day Weekend up by our camp, called the Iron Broom. A bonspiel and a golf tournament. My folks and my dad's sister and her husband and two of dad's brothers and their wives would put in a couple of rinks and a couple of foursomes for years. One year my uncle and aunt were a little late coming in from Wawa and my Dad recruited me to curl a game. Match? Whatever they call them.
So I step in and take my first shot and it, well its not as easy as it looks, right, so my rock flies right through the house. Dad comes over and tells me, ok, ok, just let up a little, no worries.
So buddy takes his shot and lays it in there and I step up and let it rip (obviously I'm not in the moment) and it zips down the ice, through the house, past the opponent's rock and into the scoreboard, which crashes to the ice. Remember I'm twenty one, so I'm kind of borderline retarded.
Dad comes over, looks at me and tells me to head up to the lounge for a beer, they'll do just fine without me.
That's the depth of my curling experience. Which is two shots more than my wife.
My old man hits the ice three or four times a week and has been curling for almost sixty years.
You know where this is going, don't you?
Anyways it should be a riot, after curling we will have a dinner and then they have a "Buddy Holly guy" to entertain. Good times coming.
Mocking the Oilers is far too easy these days, they really are becoming a laughing stock. The excuses for another terrible team centre around the injuries to Khabibulin and Hemsky. What if the Flames lost Kiprusoff or the Canucks lost Luongo, the apologists say, lets see how they would do. With a fourth straight year out of the playoffs looming I find it hard to believe how anyone anywhere can support the management of this club, you can tell when they arrive at the GMs meetings when the clown car pulls up. In any case its pretty clear based on the work of Sutter and Gillis that if their first string goalie went down for any length of time they would likely, oh I don't know, go out and do something about it.
I know I know, its hard to make trades.
Oilers' management have nobody but themselves to blame for signing a goaltender with a history of injury problems, including a bad back. A four year contract.
Stupid. There's no other word for it.
So don't give me the Khabibulin excuse.
And the usual issues up front. The difference between a good team and a bad team is that when injuries strike a good team they hand in there and survive. Detroit lost Franzen, Filppula and now Cleary and Zetterberg and still they have been hanging in there. Chicago was in first place despite not even having Hossa in the lineup, never mind the very useful Dave Bolland. Boston lost Savard and Lucic and Buffalo was without Vanek and the list goes on and on.
Losing Hemsky was a death knell for this season but it didn't have to be. Unfortunately its the same story for the Oilers as its been for the past few years. With Hemsky and Pisani out the Oilers are down to Penner and Horcoff as actual quality veteran forwards and even poor Fernando may not be part of that group any more. Luckily for them Sam Gagner seems to be taking a step forward but this has been offset by the disaster that is Patrick O'Sullivan.
Check out the lines. Horcoff playing with two kids, Stone and Brule. Jacques and Potulny and O'Sullivan. Moreau, completely done, playing with Cogliano and Stortini. Penner and Gagner, a twenty year old, playing with Robert Nilsson.
On a quality club you might have three of Brule, O'Sullivan, Cogliano, Gagner and Nilsson in your top nine. Guys like Stone, Potulny, Jacques and Stortini might fill out a fourth line with Moreau.
Instead we have this mess.
We're going to have fun on New Year's but no matter how good Dad plays we aren't going to win. Any dummy can see that. I would think so anyways.
But apparently the dummies in charge of the Oilers don't get that simple concept.
Posted by Black Dog at 3:30 PM