posted by admin in Uncategorized
Keith Ballard, what can I say? To be honest a player that was drafted in the 1st round and 11th overall, I expected better. But apparently his previous success didn’t curb his anger enough to prevent him from two handing Tomas Vokoun over the head with his stick in the middle of a tamper tantrum. And it is not the first time either, I recall in recent memory when he was caught on camera having a rather heated argument with a Canucks fan. (To be completely fair, I understand the need to point out the stupidity of Canucks fans, but don’t forget Ballard, you play for the Panthers…)
The point is the NHL will not take action against this because it was his own teammate. How ridiculous is that? If it was a player on the other team then Ballard would have been called out and banned for the season! And now because he is wearing the same jersey, the NHL and the Panthers look the other way. To quote Colin Campbell of the NHL, “It will be on every sports highlight show for the next week, if that’s not enough of a punishment . . . ”
The point is Colin, that’s not enough of a punishment. And it never was. Lacerating the ear and hospitalizing ANY player on that ice is not what the game is about. If the NHL can’t show that to all of the players on the ice, then they need to seriously reconsider what hockey is about.
In short, Ballard control your damn temper and Campbell get your damn act together.
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More bad news for Oilers fans. It seems this season is a series of tears and injuries, and that play-off spot is moving from far away to impossible. Hemsky is out for the year, and it is looking more like Horcoff will be joining him. With a shoot differential of -5.5, a standing in the conference at last in points percentage, and tied for last in wins the outlook is anything but sunny. If they carry on this way and finish in the bottom 3 of the NHL it will be the first time in Oilers NHL history. At the beginning of the season all the fans knew that this one was going to be tough, but come on boys! They seem to be earmarked as a lottery club, but now at least we can hope for a top prospect to join the team in the spring…
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Why has California stolen all my favorite players? Seriously, it doesn’t even snow there yet Smyth and Koivu decide to move, and may I add get injured (karma for leaving far superior teams…) The real question is how are these players that were deeply rooted in a particular team coping with the change?
Well the Ducks are trying really hard to get themselves out of a rather ugly start of season but despite the glimmers of hope that Koivu’s lineup (Teemu, Selanne) are showing recently, they are just not translating into actual goals. Koivu is still proving his grit against the West with his physical game, but the line seems to hit a block when faced with a top of the league goaltender. Other then their notable effort in shutting out Chicago, they are letting a lot of their games slip away in late letdowns. Where the Ducks are lacking can be summed up in one simple word; offense. At least Koivu is back on the ice after his groin injury, and who knows they may pull through, it wouldn’t be the first time that the Ducks surprised.
Now on to Ryan Smyth, my lost Oiler. I think that the best way I could describe his contribution to this team is the disaster that ensued in his absence. With a power play at 0 for 13 over the last four games, they could really use him back. Smyth is not only a brilliant player but has proven himself to be exceptional at pushing entire teams. With the young players that are on the Kings, the fit has optimal. However, since Smyth’s injury on the 16th, Kopitar is shying from the net and hasn’t scored in nine games. Other teammates follow suit, and no one knows where Smyth stands with his mysterious upper or lower body (depending on what news article your reading) injury. Smyth’s hard working puck possession worked for the Oilers, and is proving to be a powerful asset for the Kings, one that they may not be able to survive without.
It’s Ducks vs. Kings tonight, and it is a critical game for both, I for one will be staying up to the early hours of the morning to watch it.
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I realize that I am being depressing, so on a lighter note… Happy 100 Montreal Canadians! (on December 4)