Wow, what a difference a month makes. Who in God's green earth would have thought that the Canes would be fighting for home ice in the postseason, much less clinching a playoff birth with several games remaining in the reggie season? What a ride it has been for this team and the fans. Together, they've been through a river of doodie and came out somehow smelling like roses.
- I've been to the majority of the home games over this stretch and it has been some of the most fun I've ever had. The Rangers game from Thursday 4/2 during the third period in particular was an extremely memorable occasion. The 3rd period as Brindy and LaRose scored seconds apart was extreme elation and it gave me the shivers as the entire building was shaking from crowd response alone. My ears were ringing all night after the game and a little still the following morning. It would have been interesting to see the 'ol decibel meter during that ruckus. That's what its all about, dude.
- Months ago, I was at a game - maybe it was the Maple Leafs, can't really remember. But I was wearing one of my Brind'amour jerseys as he was still in his sucktastic slump. Some fans of the visiting team who were enjoying their adult beverages perhaps a bit too much were having fun yelling at me that it's time for Rod to hang up the skates and retire. I just laughed it off, did the 'ol cheers to them and carried on. I had the same thoughts of course and others probably shared the sentiment. But all along, I kept saying this:
"I don't care if he does have the worst +/- in the NHL, if your team is in the playoffs - you want a Rod Brind'amour on the team, warts and all."
Halle-lu-jah that he turned it around as he couldn't have picked a better time. As soon as he kicked his game back in gear, the team followed suit and every team they played - they ripped them a new one. Welcome back Roddy. Glad you're along for the ride and knowing your style - you'll sign a contract extension to play well into your late 40's.
- Chad LaRose is all that is man. Loved his "Day In The Life" that aired on the NHL Network too. He could have his own reality show and it would blow American Idol and Dancing With the Stars ratings away. Because many of you already know this, but when Chad LaRose is on a breakaway - he doesn't have to deke, the ice just shifts accordingly out of fear alone. Oh yeah, and he's about to get PAID this summer, son.
- OK - time to stop blowing sunshine up your butts for a minute. Lost amidst all the happy winning good times here lately - Sergei Samsonov has been stinking it up. We know enough based on his history that he's going to have hot and cold spells. He's only got two points in his past five games with an even +/- when the majority of the team has benefited from the beatdowns of other teams. Beyond the stats - if you just watch him he appears to have no confidence, turns the puck over and looks real loose trying to connect on passes. At what point do we worry about this? I know he can be as flaky as all hell, but damn. When Cullen returns to the line-up - do you keep Sammy in the line-up?
- Back to the sunshiney thoughts. I have no problem with admitting when I'm wrong about something. Though I never really came out and said that the Paul Maurice hiring was a terrible idea, a certain other writer for this blog did in more ways than one. I was certainly skeptical of Mo - but he has earned a new contract and proved many of the doubters wrong. East of Here - got anything to say in response?
- In regards to playoffs tickets, I'm thrilled that they are selling out so quickly. I decided in March to re-up for next year's season ticket package (and "iced my price" for the following two seasons). With that happening, the budget isn't ready to allow playoff ticket purchases. While I shall do my best to attend one game in the 1st round, I have no problem with enjoying the games on the home TV with good friends and good beverages.
- For those who may have missed it: I had the pleasure of interviewing the lovely Carrie Milbank over at Barry Melrose Rocks. Do check it out please.
I leave you today with a NSFW, yet side-splittingly funny Billy Mays "KABOOM!" re-dub. I've already shown it to many of my friends but I just can't get enough of it. Enjoy: