Wednesday, March 12, 2008

All Downhill From Here

March 12, 2007

In early March of 2007, the Penguins future was so much up in the air
that we had even registed a new address on blogspot that we were gonna use to cover the entire NHL.

But on March 12, our lives changed forever.
[ News Story ]

However, that was nothing compared to what was coming on March 13.


:: Congrats to [ ]
#1 in traffic among NHL sites for January.

:: Ross McKeon at Yahoo has the Pens at #8. [ Yahoo ]

Ranked #0 in life

:: Eaton is out. Scuderi is out.
Brooks Orpik gets some love for filling the gap. [ PG ]

Crosby's gonna be on one of 10 covers
commemorating ESPN Magazine's 10-year anniversary. [ PG ]

:: Crosby-esque money awaits Malkin in his new contract. [ The Hockey News ]
:: Someone finally says Malkin is a candidate for MVP. [ Burnside ESPN ]

:: Do you know who Jason Botterill is? We didn't either.
He watches the bottom line of the Pens salary cap.

Apparently, he's been dodging the issue of signing Hossa. [ National Post ]

Speaking of Hossa...

Sunday looks like a return. []

Good read.
Especially this part:

"I don’t like to guess because then you put dates in people’s heads, especially my own. I don’t want there to be a date,” he said. “I just want to know that I am 100 percent. To play my game, I can’t go out there at 80 percent and think I am going to be effective. I am just going to hurt them team if I go out there and am anything less than 100 percent. Especially with an injury like this, it’s one where you tend to avoid contact. And that’s something I am not going to be able to do.”

-Gary Roberts


It seems like yesterday it was just January.
It was colder than balls.

Now it's starting to feel like playoff hockey.

We are starting to see our last snowfalls.
The sun is creeping through your bedroom window a little earlier.
Before you know it, you'll be wondering the streets in shorts after a devastating playoff loss.

Right now, the Pens are sitting comfortably.
But there are fanbases who can't sleep at night during these times.

Two huge games last night in the East:

At one end of the Conference standings...


[ TSN ]

The Maple Leafs have their backs to the wall.
Going into a home-and-home series with Philly, they had to take both.

1:12 into the third period, Daniel Briere put the Flyers up 3-0.
The Leafs were done.

But without warning, the Leafs came back and tied it,
which set up a crazy ending.

On a powerplay late and not wanting the Flyers to get a point, as the Leafs are trying to catch them, Toronto pulls their goalie in a tied game, and they almost put one home.

They eventually won it in OT.
Huge game in Philly tonight.


In a battle on the other end of the spectrum,
Montreal and New Jersey played on Versus.

4 - 0
[ TSN ]

If you were told the final score of this game was 4-0, you'd think of a Devils victory.

Consisting of nothing out of the ordinary,
the Habs reclaim #1 in the East with a huge win on home ice.

Saku Koivu before training camp, thoughts?
“We’ll make the playoffs this season, but don’t expect us to win the Stanley Cup.”

Jaroslav Spacek and Dmitri Kalinin are out. [ TSN ]

The Lightning tell Andre Roy to take a week off
as a result of that crap with Philly's Riley Cote. [ TSN ]


Rumors were circulating after the Winter Classic
that the Pens and Flyers would rumble at Penn State.

If the NHL would give Crosby two outdoor games in a row, Pittsburgh might be bombed.

So, thankfully, the NHL is leaning towards a game in Yankee Stadium on January 1, 2009.
Some people don't want a hockey game to be the last sporting event there.

-- Some guy doesn't like it. [ North ]
-- Sean at [ Going Five Hole ] isn't one of those people.


:: The NHL will be part of a new on-demand video service online.
Regular-season games, classic games, and highlights for free. [ ]
-- Thanks to [ Kukla's Korner ] with the link.

:: [ Windor Star ] finds who is overpaid in the NHL.

:: David Amber at [ ESPN ] looks at the best 10 NHLers under 6'0", 200 pounds.


The hardest working man in blogging, Seth at [Empty Netters] found this:

:: [Mirtle M.D] with the playoff push

:: Eric McErlain at [Fanhouse] has Backstrom's reaction to the own goal.
As he notes the goal reminded a lot of people of this:


We're glad to have Charlie back.

When Hossa came over at the trading deadline,
we informed Charlie in a text message that he was gonna be taken out of Flashblog.

Charlie burst into our offices the next day and was irate.
We suggested that he take some time off.

He took our suggestion grudgingly and went on a trip around the world.


Wikipedia Editing Is Running Wild

Fedko's page was on lockdown after we made this edit to it on September 1, 2007.

But someone out there is at it again. [ Fedko Wiki ]

*For some reason, Blogspot wasn't letting us upload the picture that was sent in.


Hey we make mistaykes all the time.
We're morons who happen to own computers.

We're not part of one of the biggest websites on the planet, so we get away with it...
Unless commentor Cripplr44 stops banging his mom and reads a post.

But Yahoo? They are a mess.

How does that even get past the editor?

Many people sent that one in.



If anyone lives in the Washington Plaza Apartments building
and has a window facing Mellon Arena, shoot us an e-mail.


A possible 4-point change looms tonight.


Stoosh said...

Among my favorite days as a Pens fans:

Third: Lemieux announces he's unretiring.

Second: Winning the Crosby lottery.

FIRST: March 12, 2007.


dave said...

Haha, check Fedko's wikipedia today

sfc72388 said...

stoosh - you couldn't have summed it up any better.

and fedko's wiki page is so funny.. "He is currently linked to Pensblog Charlie and has five children. All of which are named Al which is short for Alfredsson."

haha priceless. GO PENS!

stokes said...

I'll second the "priceless" tag on the Fedko wiki. He's a complete toolbag.

Last year, i skipped a critical class to go to the game against the Sabres on the day the deal was officially announced. what an atmosphere. i got a little teary eyed when Mario came out and said his piece, i'm not gonna lie about it.


Grégoire said...

Nice info about the new online video service. Unfortunately, it seems that once again, this won't be available for those outside the USA. The nhl should really begin to think about the fans from Europe and elsewhere. I live in France. Currently, my only chance to watch games is to use sopcast in the middle of the night. This is ridiculous...

Ashley said...

hahahahahaha that Fedko page was hilarious.

Lemon party...hahahaha

Spencemo said...

March 12, 2007 changed my life...what a great day to be a Pens fan.

I love Gary Roberts...that could be the most solid statement ever made. I can't wait until he comes back.

dying alive said...

Strange that we'd be playing the Sabres again one year later. Hopefully they'll do something at the arena tonight to recognize the anniversary of the arena deal.

PO said...


all solid moments... where do the back-to-back cups rank in there? those were pretty memorable days... memorable moments for me are ones where you remember exactly where you were and what you were doing when that event happened

(3) - I am sitting in my living room watching a Pens-Isles playoff series when my alltime favorite hockey player Kevin Stevens has his face broken. (more devistating to me personally than sid bream beating out barry's weak throw)

(2) - I am sitting in my car for over an hour in front of my house listening to the radio in disbelief with tears in my eyes as Mario comes out of retirement

(1) - I spend over $80 on calling cards to call my dad and my buddies back in pittsburgh while i am in Rome to find out what is happening with my Pens.. after finding out the Pens are staying in Pittsburgh my group and I go on a three day Italian party binge in Rome

J.S. said...

I found that the key to keeping entries like Fedko's up for a long time is to only occassionally update them. If an admin notices constant updates, they usually whack the latest updates and bring the article back to original form.

And why isn't Sid listed in the ESPN article? He's 5' 11 and not over 200 lbs, isn't he?

Brett said...

if Buffalo actually had a legit shot at knocking Phili out of 8th, and if we didn't have a legit shot at home ice, I'd let the Slugs win tonight. The only thing better than Pens in the playoffs is Phili out of the playoffs.

lis said...

Bucci's article on ESPN is a good read....lots of Penguins references throughout!

Ashley said...

j.s. - Sid is listed at 5'11" and exactly 200 lbs, so I guess he would've been on the list if he weighed in at 199 lbs.

Ashley said...

Pens playing an exhibition game in Finland next season before heading to Sweden to play the Sens. Finland = too far.
Come to the Maritimes instead! Moncton would love to have them back...

Ashley said...

wow, badgrammarblog...that should've been "Pens are playing..."

Stoosh said...

PO - I wasn't a diehard Pens fan during the Cup years. They were one of the teams I followed more than others and I always liked them (mostly because I was a big fan of Ron Francis). But my favorite team growing up was Vancouver. The Pens didn't supplant the Canucks on my list until around the 1995-96 season.

canaanregulatesblog said...

no sid tonight

Steve In Denver said...

This injury b.s. is beyond ridiculous. Back to the Malkamania show...I'd imagine he'll catapult into 1st in scoring tonite.

The religion edits on Fedko's page have been up for a very long time. Can't believe they never changed them.

Last, too bad the Leafs spent the first 2/3 of the season being desperate rather than playing desperate.

J.S. said...

The religion edit has been changed on and off.

I....err, somebody always changes it back to Fedko "turning to Gary" and Gary "always being the most important thing in his life". The other stuff, like his photography interests, I can't take credit for.

BlacknGold66 said...

If anyone is going to take a night off to heal up I'd rather they did it tonight against the Slugs than any other time this late in the season.

That's basically giving Max, Sid, Hossa, Sycko (if he sits) and Roberts another FULL week to recover.

Also, at this point last season we had 86 points with I believe 14 games remaining.

Now we have 85 pts. with 12 games remaining.

At the "Season Ticket Holder Town Hall Meeting" earlier this season Stiegy (or someone, maybe one of the players) said that reaching 105 points again this season was highly unlikely.

We can do it. It'll be VERY tough... but it can be done.

Let's Go Pens!!!

Mike Costa said...

Sid's Out Tonight -_-

LargeFarva said...


Pensgirl said...

PO - Artie's my all-time favorite too. That moment plays over in my head like a nightmare. "Stunned" doesn't even begin to cover it.

And yeah, rest 'em up now before they lose the chance. But still...yeesh.

Katie said...

I remember when Fedko started. Can't say much else. Mom always said if you can't say something nice....

The Lemieux charging out of the box at Fraser brought back memories. I was at that game with my aunt and we were sitting right behind the goal. It's a memory that is still clear in my mind. One minute we're sitting complaining something and the next it's, like, Oh. My. God. What is Mario doing storming out of the box?!

fakepaulsteigerwald said...

Hey folks!

Steigy checking in here. As you all have heard by now, no Sidney Crosby, Max Talbot, or Marian Hossa for tonight's game. Therefore, my player to watch is Jarkko Ruutu. Ruutu will have his hands full trying to get under the skin of Kaleta and Peters, and we all know Georges Laraque has resigned from fighting in hockey games due to his desire to be a better role model for kids, so it's all up to the Ruuuu.

Bobby will be between the benches tonight, so I'm hoping to be joined in the box by my good friend Andre Roy who has been suspended by the Lighting for a week. What an exceptional hockey player.

Gary Roberts and Rob Scuderi skated with the team this morning, both expecting to return to the lineup near the end of March.

Well, that's all for now, Danny Potash and I are taking some peanut butter sandwiches down to the student rushers, so we'll see you tonight. Let's Go Penguins!

Christine said...

Nathan said...

Let's not forget that the 105 points last season was the Pens' second-best regular season ever. Only the 1992-93 President's Trophy team (119 points) had a better regular season than last year's team. And the Pens got really lucky last year in not losing their key players to long stretches of time.

The fact that we saw the true emergence of Evgeni Malkin as a franchise player on a team that already has a franchise player in Crosby is much more important to the success of the franchise's on-ice product than matching their regular season from last year. The goal for any team during the regular season should be making the playoffs; once a team's made it to the postseason, then it's time to assess how long a playoff run is realistic for a team at its present stage of development. Merely getting to the playoffs, even though they bowed out quickly to Ottawa, made last season a successful one for the Penguins. With their current roster, the Pens should be able to at least win one round, if not get to the Eastern Conference Finals or beyond. But worrying about playoff seeding is a pointless exercise before a playoff berth is clinched. Even though the Pens finished with 105 points last year, they didn't clinch their playoff berth until March 27 (Game 77) last year. We're actually closer to clinching this year than we were on March 12 last season; our magic number on this date last year was 18, and it's 14 going into tonight's game, and with a regulation win, it drops to 10. However, this is Game 71 for us this year, and after 71 games last season (a 6-3 win over Montreal on March 16), the magic number was 9. So by date, we're closer to clinching, but by games played, we're going to need a regulation win to get within 1 point of where we were last season.

Ramblingblog. That's why I love this place.

BlacknGold66 said...

Well put Nathan. Very Stoosh-esque in length.

But could you pull off a ramble like that "Mike Costa Style"?

Now THAT is a challange!!

haha... I keed I keed.


Flyer Hater said...


All you need, Malkinmania runs wild on the Slugs tonight.

PensKitty said...

um flyer hater,
no Syko tonight either.
Malkin will still dominate though.

Maybe even more than ever!


Zarley Zalapski Blues Explosion said...

We had a lot of points last year, but how many late leads did we blow?

Sure we got points out of going to OT and then another one in the shootout most times, but you can't depend on crap like that in the playoffs. But those things did run up our point total.

This year's team is better equipped to handle playoff hockey, and that's all that matters.

Flyer Hater said...

Penskitty, Sykora is playing tonight.

Syko playing

Per the PG: Meanwhile, Penguins winger Petr Sykora, who had been doubtful because of a sore back, participated in the morning skate and said afterward he expects to play tonight.

The Seeker said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Seeker said...

You can almost expect Yahoo to screw up it's NHL reporting.

But what's even more sad & amazing is when a Pittsburgh radio station (104.7 FM) does it's hourly news, sport, and weather updates on Wednesday - March 12th they are STILL saying the Pens lost to the Florida Panthers 5-2 LAST NIGHT!!

Stoosh said...

NATHAN - Completely agree with everything you had there.

I'll add two things.

First, even with the injuries, the one thing I love going into the playoffs is this...I don't get the impression that any team in the East is an odds-on favorite to beat this Penguins team in a seven-game series. I couldn't say that last year, when Ottawa was CLEARLY a deeper team.

That's not to say that teams aren't capable of beating the Pens in a seven-game series. There's just no opposing team that I can look at and say with any sort of confidence that they could definitely beat the Pens in four out of seven games.

Second, it might be foolish for me to speculate on that anyway, because we have yet to see this team with its full complement of post-deadline firepower in the lineup. At the very earliest, we may see it Sunday. But with Roberts and Scuds on the shelf until the end of the month, we may not really get an accurate idea of what this team is capable of until the post-season.

We have no idea how teams would handle the possibility of killing a two-minute penalty in which Sid and Malkin are each on their own power play units. We have no idea how teams will attempt to check something like Talbot-Sid-Hossa and then find an answer for Malone-Malkin-Sykora. And we have no idea what kind of damage a third line of Dupuis-Staal-Kennedy/Roberts could do (Roberts and Staal played very well off each other last year).

At the very least, this could be a hell of a lot of fun.

Sid just needs to get healthy.

PensKitty said...

HELL YEAH!! thanks flyer hater!
Good to know. anyhow, that's why I read c-blog rather than post in c-blog. well that and the old "register" thing.


Flyer Hater said...

I just wish people can stop with this "SEE SID CAME BACK TOO EARLY OMGZZZ!!!111ONE!!!!" talk, it just doesn't make sense. When Sid went down, the timetable for his return was 6-8 weeks, he came back right in the middle of that period. Everyone knew that he wasn't going to be 100% this season no matter how long he sat out. Taking a game off here or there doesn't hurt. Sid's fine.

Dani said...

Sidney: Hi, I’m Sidney Crosby. When I walk into a room doves are released. I got into my first NHL fight this season and, it was so beautiful, I made my announcer cry.

J Poms: Hi, I’m Captain March, Jason Pominville. I made Ray Emery cry when I was a rookie. I don’t fight, but I pulled this guy’s hair once. I like your doves.

Goose: honkHoOoo0onK! (All our defensemen are broken!)
J Poms: Lindy says I’m on Defense today.
Connolly: He… said… what? SPACEK! Stop eating panini’s and get you butt to Pittsburgh.
[Note: Spacek was seen at Panera today.]
Sidney: I have sars.
Geno & Afinogenov: RussianRussian [Max violently twitches] Russian.
Miller: [Death glare].

See you around the building.

BlacknGold66 said...

Another thing to add to what Nathan and Stoosh were talking about...

Therrien (as much as I've called for his head last season and earlier this season) is starting to show late this season an ability to put the right line out there at the right time.

Granted he is being helped by Yeo with that in some respects.

Also, his mentality of changing lines very quickly during a game will probably lesson (hopefully) as everyone returns healthy.

I can't complain too much about how often he changes the lines like I did a few months ago. We're still in good shape to make the playoffs and he's had Baby Pens filling in much of the season.

That said, I was worried that he'd be out-coached this year in the playoffs. I'm not sure that will happen now... but we can only wait and see.

Aside from him though... it's all about the players coming to play every night. They know that so I'm not jobbing... just saying that they will be better prepared this post-season than last.

As far as what I was saying about the pts. this season compared to last season: Mainly I was just surprised to hear doubt in voices at the Ticket-Holder meeting. I know you don't go out saying "Oh, we'll surpass that!" but with the talent we have + maturity, I certainly expected a better season this year than last. Although, I'll be the first to admit that I didn't expect them to be as potentially scary as they are becomming. Who say Malkin doing what he is doin? Christ!

stokes said...

@ Pensgirl and PO: When i'm watching highlights( or lowlights, whichever you prefer) of that game, you know when that hit is coming and i always look away. i can't watch it. its completely unsettling watching a guy land on his face, knowing that hit ruined his career...

well, that, and lots of blow and hookers in hotel rooms. but maybe it was too late by then....

Nathan said...

Now's the time to rest guys since making the playoffs this season is more a question of when the Pens are going to clinch rather than if they're going to make it at all. Better to have Sid miss a game or three now than in the postseason.

I know the whole "on pace for X points" is bullshit, but right now in the Eastern Conference, only Montreal and New Jersey are on pace to get 100 points this season. Least year, four teams finished with at least 105, and the cutoff was 92 points. This year, 100 points could well grab the top seed in the East, and we could see a team make the playoffs with fewer than 90 points for the first time since the B's and Islanders made it with 87 and 83 points respectively in 2003. The East is a tighter conference top to bottom this season; it'll be interesting to see if that makes a difference in the Cup Finals, regardless of who makes it.

stokes said...

i LOVE when dani comments because i usually have NO FREAKING CLUE on what the hell they are talking about...

Dani said...

LOL!!! Thank you. Let me explain my post...

1. Sidney is out=unknown injuries, we usually refer to as sars.
2. Goose=Paul Gaustad
3. We refer to Jason Pomiville as Pommerdoodle. His nickname is Pommers+his hair looks like a Labradoodle=Pommerdoodle (explains picture of dog, plus he's almost TOO cute). He's also our leading winger/scorer, not defensemen.
4. Max Afinogenov has a twitch. Watch him during the game. You'll laugh.
5. Here's Spacek link if it helps...

coffeytalk said...


Check your e-mail. I can help with The Washington Plaza stuff.

bluzdude said...

On the day they announced the Pens were staying, I wrote a short essay on my feelings, to share with assorted family and friends. (some of whom didn't know beans about hockey, hence some stating of the obvious. Here is part of what I wrote:

I couldn’t even fathom what I would do if the Pens left Pittsburgh. It was something that when I tried to think about it, I’d just have to make myself stop because it was too painful. I honestly had no idea what I would do. My options were limited, and none were attractive:
· Continue to root for the team. How can I not root for these kids I’ve come to enjoy so much this season? There’s Sid the Kid, current NHL scoring leader in his 2nd season, at a ripe old age of 19… Geeno Malkin, our escapee from the Russian Super League, leading candidate for Rookie of the Year at 20… Jordan Staal, the “Gronk”, 18-year old rookie expected to be playing in Juniors this year, but whose performance demanded that he stay in the Bigs, scoring 28 goals so far this year, with a league-leading 7 of them coming while short-handed… Marc-Andre Fleury, the “Little Flower”, our acrobatic 23-year old goalie… Does a true fan follow the players, or are we, as Jerry Seinfeld once said, “Just cheering for laundry?”
· NOT root for the team. The KC Penguins?? How could I root for the team that just abandoned my hometown, a place that packs that aging arena every game night and rocks it? They wouldn’t deserve my allegiance. Good luck finding such a profitable atmosphere in KC. (Would the new KC arena have to feature “spit-cup” holders?)
· Root for another team. Ho-hum… I just don’t give a hang about anyone else. While I once had a certain respect for the New Jersey Devils, they’re about as exciting to watch as Jello hardening. The rest of the Eastern Conference, I’ve been too busy hating to pay attention to their merits. Any team from the Western Conference is automatically disqualified… teams with such a lack of sense as to be starting their games at 10:00 at night* is obviously too poorly run to have my loyalty.
· Stop following hockey. And deprive myself of the most exciting spectator sport there is? Imaging football with a wall around the sidelines, played without huddles, or even distinct plays. Just a lot of very fast running and passing and huge violent collisions. Then every so often, two people pair off and try to beat the shit out of each other. How can you pass that up? (OK, I know about the miniscule TV ratings, but I’m just sayin’…)

Like I said, none of the choices were very appealing. I was beginning to truly understand, for the first time, what it must have been like to be a Colts or Browns fan, and have your team ripped out from under you, albeit not under the cover of darkness. Helpless… hopeless… betrayed…devastated...

Then sitting on the train on the way to work, I spot a tiny paragraph at the bottom of what passes for hockey coverage on our local sports page, and there it is. A giant weight has been lifted from my chest, and I can breathe again. I practically sprint from the subway station to my office, so I can look up the details in a real newspaper. I want to tell all my friends that care about hockey about it, but unfortunately, I have no friends that care about hockey, so I had to be content with sitting in my chair and quietly vibrating.

My team is safe, I still have my NHL Center Ice package, and now I can finally go buy some fresh Penguins team apparel. The playoffs beckon for the first time since 2001. Life is good. Let’s go Pens…

*Note: Yes I know that Detroit, Nashville, Chicago, St Louis, etc. all play home games in eastern or central time, but why let facts ruin a perfectly good joke?

sfc72388 said...

what are some of the other wiki pages that pensblog faithful have altered??

Nick Saia (usa) said...

I went ahead and made some high quality WWGRD vinyl stickers. Grab 'em here if you want one...

Stoosh said...

BLUZDUDE - It goes without saying that your post was awesome.


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