Monday, October 3, 2011

lets play hockey! 2011-12 season preview..

peter puck welcomes you..
dude.. 

its that time... hockey season has arrived..
so, in no particular order, heres what i have to say about the teams going into the 2011-2012 season..

shea webber
nashville predators..
by taking weber to arbitration this summer and getting their asses handed to them, the preds have a difficult season ahead... a small market team with very little cash, its not likely nashville hangs onto weber after july 1, 2012... i suspect that if lidstrom retires and weber walks away from nashville, the mighty red wings will sign the veteran defenseman to a multi-year deal worth at least $7.5 mil a year with a no movement clause.. 

philadelphia flyers..
jaromir jarg
paul holmgren may very well be the smartest gm in all of hockey... and i may very well be the queen of denmark... after exploding his offense over the summer, by handing a huge contract to a has been net minder -  bryzgalov - he had to sign someone, (anyone really) with some name recognition and a reputation for scoring clutch goals and being a monster scorer in the playoffs... too bad that same guy also has a reputation for checking out on his team and not playing up to his potential when that team isnt the pittsburgh penguins.. jaromir is not gonna be the jagr of the nineties when he and super mario dominated their division, conference, and league.. its a long season.  hes done by the all-star break..
and whats poor paul holmgren gonna do in january after bryzgalov has crashed and burned in december? ride bobrovsky and a backup-to-be-named-later to another early flame out in april or may?  fail..

drew doughnuts
los angeles kings..
barring any season ending injuries, and with doughty signed and penner tanned, rested, and ready, the kings are primed to go deep in the playoffs.. their solid in net.. quick is a beast between the pipes and bernier will be a number one goalie sooner rather than later.. i was surprised the flyers didnt try harder to wedge him outta los angeles in the richards deal.. he could sill end up there if either gm panics at the trade deadline..
the kings have improved with the addition of richards and gagne.. although i think they will regret letting wayne simmonds go.. hes gonna tear it up in philly and have a bigger impact going fwd than richards will have in los angeles..
this is by far and away the best team los angeles has iced since the great one played here in 90s.. the pieces are in place, the opportunity presents itself.. now lets see if the kings have what it takes to boat this bass and win the stanley cup... prolly not..
damn you marty mcsorley.. or is it barry melrose... 


the dynamic duo malkin & crosby
pittsburgh penguins.. 
evgeni malkin.. jordan staal.. marc-andre fleury.. sydney crosby (eventually).. paul martin.. james neal.. kris letting... tyler kennedy, chris kunitz.. depth everywhere - god bless wilkes-barre scranton, ray shero, and mario lemieux.. watch out world.. here come the pittsburgh penguins.. if sid-the-kid returns and is as good as ever the penguins really could go. all. the. way.. if sidney crosby never plays another game in the nhl for as long as he lives - hockey gods forbid - our lives will be somehow less meaningful and a bright light will have been extinguished too soon..  even so, the penguins will still  be in the eastern conference finals.. they really are that good.. they are the team to beat in the east.. le coupe stanley is theirs.. if they want it bad enough..  the worst thing that could happen would be for a career minor-leaguer goon on temporary call up for some dead-in-the-water-team to deliberately take crosbys head off because hes jealous or smitten or because the douche-bag coach told him to go out there and hurt someone.. im looking at you islanders.. <-- gives them the stink eye.. speaking of the..


sid the kid
new york islanders..  
the possible move to brooklyn looks promising.. if not, you better learn to parle vous some français mother fuckers... quebec city is calling.. will you accept the charges?

detroit red wings.. 
never count these guys out of anything.. they could easily win another stanley cup.. what a nice gift for nicholas lidstrom that would be, especially if this season is his farewell tour.. the winged wheel will acquire shea weber from nashville either via free agency or will trade with whomever for his negotiating rights... count on it..

alex ovechkin - look mom, no fat..
the washington capitals.. 
bad news boyz.. your team isnt really any better than last year... at least not in goal.. we all know great goal-tending is crucial to win championships..  ch.. ch.. ch.. chokes outta the playoffs.. prolly in the first round... sigh.. fail..

new york rangers..
brad richards is gonna lead this team to the promised land.. eventually... with marc staal on the shelf for now, sean avery on waivers, and marian gáborík still made outta spun glass and pixie dust or is it balsa wood and elmers glue, richards has his work cut out for him.. hes reunited with his old buddy and former coach john tortorella from their years together with the lightning, and will be counted on to be the same kinda suck-up leader for torts in nyc that he was in tampa bay.. look for the rangers to make the playoffs and be marginally better than last season.. prolly..
will they win the stanley cup? maybe if mark messier guarantees a cup for the big apple itll happen.. or not..
will sean avery ever come out as the first openly gay man to play in the nhl..? the soap opera continues..


honorable mention..

dont they look sharp.. go jets!
winnipeg jets.. 
with the nhl returning to winnipeg (awesomesause) after 16 15* long jetsless years, it really doesnt matter if they do well or not.. theyve guaranteed sell-outs for the next 5 seasons... playing in the southeast division is gonna take a huge toll on this young franchise as the travel schedule is gonna leave the pegger boys strung-out and jet-lagged as all hell.. with everyone in manitoba so beyond ready for a real nhl franchise, it not about results this season.. just happy to be invited to the party..
lets  go jets!

and most or some of the rest...


chicago blackhawks... idk.. captain serious is always clutch and they did improve over last year.. corey crawford is gonna have to stand on his head this season for the men of the four feathers to see the second round of the playoffs..


anaheim ducks... teemu selanne for president!  they will compete with los angeles and san jose for the pacific division crown..
teemu selanne


vancouver.. is still vancouver.. same issues.. different season... coughrobertluongocough..  no cup yet again.. just as there is no crying in baseball, there is no biting in hockey.. alexandre burrows <-- im looking at you...


san jose... a different team..  new and improved? meh..  joe thornton isnt getting any younger.. will prolly win their division again, but look out for the kings to de-throne them as it were.. 


columbus upgraded over the summer... will miss the playoffs again.. or still.. whos idea was it to put a team there again? oh right... this guy... 


boston will defend the cup well, will win their division but have fewer points than the number 4 & 5 finishing teams, and not repeat as cup champions..



is this the year that toronto finally makes the playoffs? no.



so there it is.. if i didnt mention your team, sorry but theyre just not on my radar.. 

lets.play.hockey!

~ cheers.. david

* k, i know i know, i suck at math... stick tap to jb for pointing that out..


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