Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Minnesota Mullets: Nelson a Close Second

Brady Arneson is this year's winner of the 2008 Minnesota Mullet competition, however Diablo centreman Steve Nelson represented by narrowly missing out on the honor. The fact that Brady was wearing a North Dakota jersey did leave a bitter taste in Nelly's mouth, but fortunately Nelson averted a significant meltdown at the Hasting Eagle's Club and was escorted out peacefully. Read more from the Red Wing Republican Eagle. Great Job Brady!

Congrats Ovie! Moving up to the Big Time

NHL Star Called Up To Big Leagues To Play For NFL Team

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Playoff Preview - Detroit vs. Colorado

Update 4/24 @ 2:35 pm: Apparently I'm not the only person fired up for this series. Wings-Avs: Blood feud is getting renewal, by John Niyo from the Detroit News. Can't wait to read the Kizla rebuttal.

One of the best rivalries of the "new" NHL.

Some history: During the 96 Cup Playoffs, Claude Lemeiux from Colorado clobbered Kris Draper into the boards. Similar to Steph Veilleux's hit on Stastny during game four of the last series except Draper's head was crushed.

I couldn't find a video with only the hit - it's in the middle of this sequence - although you can see the style of Lemieux.

Colorado ended up winning the game and went on to win the Cup. After the series, Dino Ciccerelli (no stranger to thuggery) said "I can't believe I shook the guy's friggin' hand".

The next year they played four times. The first three were without incident, but the fourth and final game had a certain chippiness to it. When Peter Forsberg and Igor Larionov began a fight, Darren McCarty took the opportunity to settle the Draper score with Lemieux.

Here's the whole brawl.

McCarty ended up scoring the game winner in OT. Quite the night.

The Red Wings came together as a team and ended up winning the Cup in 1997. The next season, in their first regular season game, McCarty and Lemieux dropped the gloves on the first puck drop and settled the previous season's score. Lemieux didn't turtle this time.

The feud didn't die after that. Patrick Roy fought Chris Osgood on the following April 1st and almost fought Dominic Hasek five years later in 2002.

Disclaimer - used a lot of Wikipedia for this research.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

New Diablos Playoff Team Needed

Although this will always be a pro-Wild and pro-Devils blog they're both out of the playoffs. Therefore this blog needs a new team. Unfortunately, the Caps just lost in OT, otherwise, I think the Caps would have been a good fit. Why? Ovie is outstanding and just plain fun to watch, but I think the best reason to cheer for the Caps is the fact that they've got an owner who's a dead ringer for a cleaned up Ron Jeremy.

Ted Leonsis & The King of Porn

If you have a suggestion, try to use the comments to discuss. Apparently only Todd, Jarick, and some guy named Slag know how to use them (unless Slag is Todd's alias)

Happy Earth Day from the Diablos

Doesn't Helium make a hole in the ozone? Thank you, Lionel.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Wild Out in Six; Devils in Five

Well, another utterly disappointing playoff performance has been submitted by the Wild and the Devils. Here is some video.

Wild 1 - Avalanche 2

Too many questions... not enough answers.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Game 6 Preview - Schultz In

Here's a little email conversation I had with Michael Russo from the StarTribune today...

6:40 am


For the love of God and all that's holy...

Show Gabby the Ranger's video, or the Nashville OT winner, or Calgary's 3 goal game (with one waved off). If you're afraid of crossing the line, forward this email to Branko or Rammer or some one.

I'm desperate. Something's gotta be done.

Ted Reiff

11:40 am


I wrote about it today. Ironically, I have the room across the hall from gaborik...i jokingly told him he could borrow my laptop

Here's the write up. I hadn't read it until later today. I'm not sure if anyone remembers, but before the Rangers game, Gabby was watching Pavel Bure highlights and then before the Nashville game, Russo showed him his five goal performance against the Rangers.

Also, Russo's reporting (on the blog) that Nick Schultz is playing tonight.

Look for Nick “Willis Reed” Schultz to play tonight.

Are you playing? “I think so.”

Funny story, the second he said that, he was called into a one-minute meeting with GM Doug Risebrough, who clearly told him, “Don’t tell the media.”

Too late. It was on the blog by the time he got back. The rest of the interview Schultz, whose missed the series thus far following an appendectomy only 12 days ago, was throwing in caveats, like if I play, etc, but he’s in.

Devils 3 - Rangers 5

Friday, April 18, 2008

More Wild Bitching

Here are some Wild quotes to back up what I said in the previous post. If you're sitting within proximity of a little girl, let her read them to you so you can get the full context.

"We had energy, I would say, up until the point where they scored," center Eric Belanger said.

"We had played such a good game," center Pavol Demitra said. "We had so many shots. We just needed one goal, and it just wasn't there."

And this one sounds like its coming from a camp counselor. You know the hippy chick from Camp WannaHavaFunTime! who was always so cheerful that you wanted to strangle her by her hippy necklace?... Oh, that was just me? O.K.

"We've been coming from behind this whole series," Brian Rolston said. "It would be nice to get up, it would be nice to play with a lead. Our effort was awesome tonight. We feel very proud of our effort tonight. Nobody will be hanging their head here. We'll be ready in Colorado."

That quote screams Tuesday morning tee time.

I think I know the answer for the Wild.

They need Todd on the bench and a couple of videos of the Death Mutant Jesus Killers or whatever before the game. Sure Pierre-Marc Bouchard will be a quivering heap on the locker room floor, but if that's what it takes.

Wild 2 - Avalanche 3 (No OT)

The Wild outshot the Avalanche last night, but not enough of the pucks got behind Jose Theodore. 40-17 were the shots. Theodore was very good, but...

The Wild controlled every aspect for the game for the first two periods, but when it came down to it, they never really got a good shot off. Theodore was seeing the puck extremely well and the Wild never really got a shot off that had a chance of getting by him. Backstrom was good too - the three goals that were scored on him were on outstanding shots. The only way either team was going to score on either goalie was through the backdoor. So let's look at the first three goals.

(0 - 1) On the power play, Brunette parks his ass in front of Backstrom and when Foppa throws one out front, Bruno backhands the deflection past Backstrom who's ass over teakettle in the blue paint. Pretty much a carbon copy of his other two goals (both of which started the scoring in the previous two games).

(1 - 1) Wild power play and the boys are working it around the perimeter. Burns gets the puck on the left dot after a rebound (not many of those last night) off of a Rolston shot. He thought shot, but heard Butch who's on the opposite dot. The Av's are all collapsing on Burnsy's shot and leave a lane to Butch. Cross-ice pass, backdoor shot, goal.

(1 - 2) Colorado power play on a horrible penalty taken by Hill. Liles on the blueline cross-ice's a pass to Wolski on the top of the right dot who one-time's it for the goal. Backstrom almost got all the way across the crease, but Wolski put it in a tight hole. Can't really call it an aimed shot, but the fact that it was another backdoor shot gave it as good a chance to go in as anything else thrown towards the net.

Each one of these goals were not examples of the shooter beating the goalie, but the shooter getting open with some open net in front of him. Nothing surprising, but ask yourself..."How many more times did the Wild try to go backdoor?" There wasn't a lot of passes across the slot - many of them blocked by the Av's. Gaborik got a rebound that he juggled before backhanding it into Theodore's leg pads and Burns pinched to get a cross-ice pass, but Theodore was able to get in front and block it. I'm not sure whether the Av's Defense and Theodore were able to cut down on the opportunities or the Wild weren't either aggressive or creative enough around the net. Either way, Theodore saw 38 shots last night, missed one, and I'm not sure he cared enough on Rolston's goal.

My theory is this. All throughout this franchise's history, they've played the underdog. They've been the darlings of St. Paul with their moxie and grit and whatever. They came and replaced the beloved North Stars. Their hometown hero scored the first goal ever at the X. They made an improbable Cup run in '03. They went toe to toe with the eventual Cup Champs last year and took a chunk out of them in Game 4 before Brad May "disgracefully" punched out our "non-fighting" Kim Johnnson. The entire franchise history is filled with David vs. Goliath stories.

The only problem is Goliath always wins the Cup. Every team that wins the Stanley Cup plays the bully. Even the lower seeded teams (Edmonton in '06, Anaheim in '03) that make it to the Finals take control of the games with stifling defense and opportunistic offense. They win games by moxie, grit, and a spit in your face / piss on your grave attitude that is lacking in our boys.

It shows in how they play. Last year during game four against Anaheim, when the Wild absolutely needed a win, Mark Parrish played as if he had a nest of fire ants in his breezers. He didn't score any goals in that game, but was all over the frickin' place creating chaos in his wake. The third and fourth goals by Gaborik and Rolston were goals that were the result of chaos. They weren't pretty, but they were the result of relentless pressure and advantageous positioning. When was the last time this team was relentless in anything?

A good period of playoff hockey cannot be: "We got a lot of good looks and good shots". It has to be: "We put the puck in the net". This team needs to forget the underdog role and play the favorite, because they are the favorite. They need to be the bully, not the pipsqueek. This ain't the movies - they need to be the Biff and not the Marty McFly; the Galactic Empire and not the Rebel Alliance; the Jason Vorhees and not the six 105 pound teenage actresses with 42 inch chests. They need to be Exxon and not Joe Six Pack. They are the better team and everyone knows it. But the better team doesn't move on - the team that scores more goals does.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Devils 3 - Rangers 4

I believe it was the Red Hot Chili Peppers who so adequately said:


Zach Parise let the puck slip off his stick to Fedor Tyutin who's slapper was tipped in by Chris Drury for goal #3. Then with 3 minutes to play, Patty Elias was trying to clear and ran into Colin White (who also ran into Marty during game one leading to a goal). The puck slid over to Straka who passed it to Staal who slapped in the winner.


And then traitor Gomer knocks the faceoff into the Devils empty net for a pretty cool goal. I miss him so bad it hurts.

Back to the Prudential Center for Game 5 on Friday for a 7:30pm game.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Wild 1 - Avalanche 5

Holy Crap.

For the life of me, I don't know how to approach this one. First off, I slept through almost the entire game. My internet connection wasn't getting good coverage of the game and so I dozed off soon after the puck dropped - of course an aftereffect of watching all of Game 3. I woke up briefly after the first, checked the score on my phone, and when I saw 0-3 Av's, and knowing that the Wild are not capable as a Calgary-like comeback, I passed out for good.

After digesting highlights and various write-ups (Startribune, Russo's Blog, DenverPost (hacks), CBC, ESPN, TSN, Hockeyfights.com), I figured I would chime in with my own commentary with assistance from the late, great Herb Brooks.

Those guys looked like a bunch of monkeys humping a football.

Game 5 tomorrow night at the X. Let's hope that between now and 8:00pm tomorrow they each have a solid bowel movement and man up.

By the way, there are way too many videos on YouTube of monkey's humping all sorts of things, but I couldn't find one of a monkey and a football - not that I would have posted it, because this blog has certain lines it will not cross. So instead of a monkey, here's a turtle.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Wild 3 - Avalanche 2 (OT)

Dear Butch,

Hey Man, Nice Shot.


The Diablos

For some good and bad commentary of last night's game, read...

Tom Powers - Pioneer Press "A Little Less Respect..."

Mark Kizla - Denver Post "Ugly Betty Hockey..."

Kizla's email is mkizla@denverpost.com. Feel free to fill his inbox with spam.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Conn Smythe Frontrunners

1. Brian Rolston.
2. ??????

Why There's Hope

Here's why there is hope for the Devils. From the Newark Star-Ledger:

Why did the Rangers dominate the Devils during the regular season and in the first two games of this series?

According to Sutter, there wasn't enough hate from the Devils.

"I never really saw the rivalry with these two teams until Game 2 (of the playoffs)," Sutter said. "It's been a concern of mine. Let's just put it this way: Rivalries are supposed to be heated battles. They're like wars. We hadn't had a game like that until Game 2.

"Maybe some people disagree. That's the reason why we only won one game this year. It's not that they're so much better than we are."

Sutter said the change occurred because the Devils shifted into desperation mode.

"We always disliked the Rangers but we decided we were giving them a lot of respect. Too much. We have to start hating them more," Devils winger Zach Parise said.

"We know it's a rivalry. We weren't going out and dropping gloves every shift, by any means. But I think it really took a turn in the last game. It went to a new level, I thought. There was a sense of disliking your opponent."

A cross-check to the teeth from Rangers defenseman Christian Backman certainly helped raise the hate level for Parise.

"It makes you a little more ticked off. I wasn't happy about it," Parise said. "Whether or not you lose teeth, it was a cross-check in the face. It's going to be your nose or your teeth. Unfortunately it was my teeth."

Backman's Stick to Parise's Mouth

Last night, Mike Rupp showed some of that hate.

Devils 4 - Rangers 3 (OT)

Dear John Madden,

Thanks. You have shown us that sometimes you have to throw the puck on the goal & hope for the best.


The Diablos

Dear Devils Power Play,

Nine minutes twenty six of time, eight opportunities, three shots, two goals. Minor improvement, but still... it's improvement.


The Diablos

Dear Avery,

What's your fuckin' deal? Do you have any shame?

Screw off,

The Diablos

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Wild 3 - Avalanche 2 (OT)

Dear Mikko Koivu,

You are a Warrior.


The Diablos

Dear Martin Skoula,

You're alright. We like you.


The Diablos

Dear Keith Carney,

You Magnificent Bastard.


The Diablo Geezers (anyone older than 35)

Devils 1 - Rangers 2

Dear Sean Avery,

You're a bitch.

To the Devils: honestly, how the hell do you think you're going to score when you have five power plays and only four shots?


The Diablos

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Diablos Announce Free Agent Signing

ST. PAUL, MN - The Diablos Hockey Club, fresh off of qualifying for the USA Hockey Nationals in Blaine MN, has made a few roster additions to cover for roster vacancies over the weekend of May 16-18. In one of the more surprising moves of the season, the Diablos signed Otto the Hockey Playing Bear from the Finnish B League to a 21 day contract.

"We saw his stats and his tryout video and were impressed," said Pat Quinn, Diablos European Scouting Consultant from his winter home in the south of France. "I had heard of his talents, but after seeing his video, I knew he would be a good fit with the skaters on the Diablos".

Here is the video Quinn is referring to.

"I'm glad we were able to sign him first, because the Toronto Maple Leafs were about to present a serious offer", Quinn quipped.

Otto will be flown in via FedEx on April 26th and will reside at the Como Zoo when not training with the Diablos.

Devils 1 - Rangers 4

Dear Marty,

Next time, please cover it up.


The Diablos Plumbers
(and Justin Alderink)

Wild 2 - Avalanche 3 (OT)

Dear Slovakian Mafia,

It's called backchecking, boys. Sometimes you have to force yourselves to do some things that don't come naturally to you. That's why the Cup changes everything (or least it does for some guys).


The Diablos Plumbers
(and Stephane Veilleux)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Stanley Cup Playoffs: The Mullet Speaks

Here's hoping for a Wild / Devils Stanley Cup Finals. Barry, what do you think?

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

AHA D1 Championship: Diablos 0 - Nemesis 2

BLOOMINGTON, MN - Suddenly, the Diablo's unthinkable run to the D1 championship ran into a wall Sunday afternoon as the Diablos fell to the Nemesis 0-2. Under the leadership of Captain Todd Ewing and alternates, John Blasingame and John Driscoll, the Diablos Hockey Club posted an outstanding 18 win, 5 loss, 1 tie record, but the Nemesis threw the clamps on and kept the Diablos off the scoreboard for their last AHA game. Considering every obstacle that the Diablos overcame, the fact that they made the championship run was amazing. Killing penalties, and scoring a power play goal in the second period was the Nemesis secret to upending the 'Blos.

In the end, the Diablos only put 16 shots on the Nemesis goaltender, not enough to sustain a comeback. The Diablos put up a good fight, however were unable to put enough good plays together to defeat the Nemesis.

Official AHA Scoresheet
- TR

AHA Playoffs Recap - D1 Pool 2

Diablos 3 - Renegades 2

ST. LOUIS PARK, MN - The Diablos Hockey Club gutted out a 3-2 win against their first D1 East opponent of the season, the Renegades. The Diablos had faced the Renegades earlier in the season with a pre-season scrimmage and knew that there were some good skaters and tough hockey players wearing Renegade sweaters. With some solid defense and some opportunistic scoring plays, the Diablos were able to wear down the 'gades.

Ted Reiff provided the scoring with his first Diablo hat trick. John Blasingame set up Reiff on two of the tallys and Dean Groth helped on one. The game winner was an unassisted shorty at the end of the second period. The Diablos threw a vice around the neutral zone and their own defensive end during the third period and finished the game by stifling a 6 on 5 when the Renegades pulled their goalie. Goaltender Justin Alderink made 30 saves in the win.

Official AHA Scoresheet - TR

Diablos 7 - Fighting Piranha's 2

ST. LOUIS PARK, MN - The Diablo Hockey Club cinched a number one seed by completing their D1 Pool 2 schedule with a 7-2 win against the D1 East Piranha's. The Diablos fell behind early 2-1, but it was quickly remedied with some quick scoring in the second and relentless pressure during the third.

Dave Christenson, Jarick Losey, Dean Groth, Peter Sinesio, John Driscoll(2), and Ted Reiff had goals while Larry Eckman, Monique Lindquist, Andy Suerth(2), Reiff, John Blasingame, Christenson, and Groth recorded helpers.

Official AHA Scoresheet - TR

Diablos 7 - Renegades 0

BLOOMINGTON, MN - The Diablo Hockey Club has traveled a long way as a hockey team this season and now, not only do they have the hardware show for it, but they will need to travel a little further as they have secured a bid for the National Championships by winning the D1 Pool 2 Championship. In a rematch against the Renegades, the Diablo's struck early and often and defeated them 7-0.

Ted Reiff, Steve Nelson, Rocco Bonello, Andy Suerth, Jarick Losey, Dave Christenson, and Ryan Carroll each tallied a goal apiece and Bonello, John Driscoll(2), Nelson, Dean Groth, Todd Ewing(2) and Monique Lindquist each assisted. Justin Alderink was money with the shutout tossing away 18 shots.

Official AHA Scoresheet - TR

The Blaine, MN Chamber of Commerce's worst nightmares have come true. The Diablos have received a bid to play in the National Championships at the Schwan's Super Rink. Arrangements are being made at the Blaine Super 8 Motel to fill the outdoor pool with cow's blood. Let the mayhem continue!

Monday, April 7, 2008

One Set of Playoffs Done...

And another one begins.

AHA Playoff recaps are coming - your contributions are always welcome. In the meantime, LET'S GO WILD!!!

If you are interested in knowing the true recap message of the Diablo's loss to the Nemesis, combine the first letters of each sentence in each paragraph and add the last word in italics. Let me know if you figured out the code.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Diablos 3 - Renegades 2

Updated 4/7/08 - Different Video.


Eyes... are... murble... closing... skargle...

Recap... later...

Official AHA Scoresheet - TR

Best Playoff Beard

Vote for one on your right.

Bret Hedican

Mike Commodore

Scott Niedermayer

Danny Briere

Peter Sinesio

Hockey Night in St. Paul

Gabby scored #41 & #42 (and was robbed of #43), Jacques Lemaire won #500, and Jack Hillen played #1.

Marian Gaborik was an absolute animal last night scoring three, having one taken away, and had an assist to a deft looking Todd Fedoruk and the Minnesota Wild, for the first time in franchise history, has won the Northwest Conference. Congratulations to the hometown club!

Gotta love Fridge doing the toothless Hambone.

In addition to what was already a special night, head coach Jacques Lemaire won his 500th game, being the eleventh coach in the NHL to do so. Congratulations to the hometown coach!

"Urry up I gotta go pee."

Finally, Minnetonka native, Holy Angels alum and state championship winner, Jack Hillen laced them up for his first NHL game last night.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Diablo's - Ak Bars Metaphorical Highlight Video

Whether you're a Diablo or an Ak Bar, Ice Gator or Nemesis, F. Piranha or Renegade, watching this video will give you the same feelings you experienced last night. A little excitement and some marvel yet at the same time, disgust and a good amount of outrage.

Warning... just like a tie, you will feel the need to cleanse yourself after watching.

Diablo's 2 - Ak Bars 2

PLYMOUTH MN, The immortal Alabama football coach, Bear Bryant, once described playing to a tie like "kissing your sister". If that's true, there was a lot of sisterly love in the opening round of the D1 playoffs last night as three of the four matchups ended in ties. The Diablo's and Ak Bars did their part in skating to a hard fought 2 - 2 tie.

The Ak Bars came out and out-skated the Diablo's in the first period, but it was a Dean Groth wrist shot low and away that put the Diablos on the board first. Ted Reiff got credit for the assist. However, as quickly as the Diablos got on the board, the Ak Bars scored the equalizer and the go ahead goal on successive shifts. Both D. Bannister and K. Nelson scored from their blueline, :23 apart to take a lead that would hold through two periods.

The Diablo's seemed to be slow of foot in the first period, but picked up the pace in the second and the third. Jarrick Losey notched the pace up even further when he collected a puck in his own end and skated it up. With grace, poise, and the speed of a thoroughbred, he weaved his way past the Ak Bar blue line. He shoulder-shimmied the Ak Bar defender which provided just enough space to unleash his cobra-like wrist shot through the closing space between the defenders and over the glove of Ak Bar goaltender T. Cain. If a prettier goal was scored last night, this reporter did not see it. With that goal, Losey is one third of the way to riding the bull.

The score remained tied throughout the third. The Diablo's found their legs and buzzed the Ak Bar goal, but couldn't convert any chances. The Diablo's were able to shoot 22 pucks on Cain, while goaltender Justin Alderink saw 25 and discarded 23.

The Diablo's will continue their improbable playoff run with a Friday night game against the D1 East Renegades on the west sheet at St. Louis Park. The Puck Drops at 6:00. Official AHA Scoresheet - TR

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The One That Started The Mayhem

Generating Good Karma. The first Diablos Video.

Game Day

Tuesday, April 1, 2008