29 October 2007

If I Were A Check From Behind, And You Were A Referee...

...would you call me anyway?

We've got an off-weekend coming up, and that give me a whole stress-free week to just have some fun! Often times, when bloggers are totally out of ideas interested in a new perspective, they do a "roundtable" or "blogpoll." This is nothing like that.

I sent an email to certain members of the hockey community asking, "If you were a penalty, what would you be?" The result is a glimpse into the psyche of hockey fans, and it's a bit scary.

"Interference, because I don't see why I shouldn't be able to check anybody anytime I want, and I take those liberties in NHL 2003. Checking is fun. It should be encouraged, and not discouraged by having 'penalties' for checking someone away from the play." BadgerBacker, from The Wisconsin Hockey Blog

"I would be five for fighting and a game misconduct." Goon, from Goon's World

"A la the Boogeyman, I'd be a five minute major for fighting combined with a game misconduct for being the biggest bad-ass on the ice." Roy, from Wild Puck Banter

"I'd have to be boarding. After all, I've been told for years that I bore people to death." Bruce Ciskie, UMD play-by-play announcer and writer of The Ciskie Blog

"Checking from behind, and I think you know why..." HockeyMom, UND fan

"I would be Abuse of Officials because I'm convinced there are very few refs who know their asses from their elbows... and I often want to or in fact do abuse officials! Video evidence of my theory. That clip came from a junior game in Sweden in which the player was called for Abuse of Officials because the ref tripped over the player." Catie, from Hockey in Colorado

"My first thought is that I'd be a 5 minute major for slashing, mostly because I think it's something players get caught for after someone slashed them first. I'm a big believer in the old Cold-War doctrine of 'massive retaliation.' If I perceive you've dropped a bomb on me, then you better be prepared for a bigger bomb coming back atcha. My second choice would be a too many men on the ice, which would be an adequate metaphor of my tendency to use more words than necessary. My third choice would be unsportsmanlike conduct because if it comes down to it and I'm standing on the bench behind the team, I'll toss every stick I can reach onto the ice in order to make a point." Donald Dunlop from UAA Hockey Fan Blog

"I would want to say hooking because I've always aspired to be a hooker... but then tripping would be a good one too since I've never tripped off anything in my life... oh and then checking from behind is good too because taking anything from behind sounds SO dirty... Dang! How's a gal to choose?" Let's Go Mavs from Let's Go Mavs

"Holding the stick or roughing... because... well, I like it rough." MeanEgirl, from Michigan Tech Hockey Blog

"Hooking. It seems to me that this is the penalty of all those scrappy little guys who are just trying to even it up and slow someone down a little bit. I LOVE those scrappy little guys and I like to think I'm a little scrappy (I think I could take down someone bigger than me), so I'm going with HOOKING!" WinTwins57 from Win Twins

"Instigating. Because I am awesome at it." Dirty from Dirty's Diatribe

Hacks that didn't reply: DG, Swami, DA, WCH

And what would RWD be? I think it's obvious I'd be unsportsmanlike conduct, of the 10 minute variety, as I have a way with words.

28 October 2007

No Quarter

tUMD 3, Pioneers zippo

(The lateness of this post may or may not have something to do with the Ice Road Truckers marathon I may or may not have watched on the History Channel, to make sure my IRT BF Jay didn't get stuck or fall through the ice.)

I love my 'Dogs. They always know just what I want for my birthday. Did I, or did I not, go on USCHO and claim that tDogs were going to win yesterday? I did predict a 5-2 win, but a SHUTOUT is even better. As long as they don't think I'm 30, because seriously, then my life would be over.

I'm sad that I missed the game, but, as certain RWD Super Special Insiders were aware, I was busy terrorizing the galaxy as Darth Vader. I'm SO PROUD of the Dogs for recovering from Friday night's "difficulties" to play solid D and get a shutout. I'd still like to see us take fewer penalties, but the PK unit was up to the task, and Al was solid gold soul. Now that the freshmen have broken onto the scoreboard, they will be unstoppable. Bordson seems to be angling for a My Guys inclusion next year. We shall see...

tDogs are off next weekend, which makes me sad, since I'd be able to watch both games. CC had better be ready for us to kill them.

Wins Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 5!
Points Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 14!

My Guys:
MacGregor Sharp: 5!
Michael Gergen: 3 (INJ)
Matt McKnight: 2
Mike Curry: 1

Justin Fontaine: 2!
Cody Danberg: 1!
Rob Bordson: 1!
Everyone else: 0

On Notice:
Travis Gawryletz
Alex Stalock
Evan Oberg
Kyle Schmidt
Matt McKnight

Goals only
Drew Akins
Trent Palm
Cody Danberg
Justin Fontaine

26 October 2007

Defying Gravity

So you can't bring me down.

tUMD 1, Pioneers 5

Not so happy about tonight's game. It started out so well, DU scored but we answered less than a minute later! I was so pumped.

Something is wrong with my computer, and it keeps deleting what I write at random, so this is going to have to be short.

Wins Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 6
Points Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 16

My Guys:
MacGregor Sharp: 4
Michael Gergen: 3 (INJ)
Matt McKnight: 2
Mike Curry: 1

Justin Fontaine: 1!
Everyone else: sandbagging

On Notice:
Travis Gawryletz
Alex Stalock
Evan Oberg
Kyle Schmidt
Rob Bordson
Cody Danberg

Goals only
Matt McKnight
Drew Akins
Trent Palm

24 October 2007

Holy Diver

Ronnie James Dio wrote this song just for Rhett Rakhshani

Holy Diver
You've been down too long on the Magness ice
Oh what you did isn't nice

Fool the zebra
You can see his stripes but the hit was clean
Oh don't you see what I mean

Draw a penalty
Holy Diver

Shiny skate blades
Flail in the air to draw attention to you
Scared someone's coming for you

Race for your team's bench
You can hide and turtle 'till you see the light
Oh we will pray the call's right

Draw a penalty-penalty

Between the velvet lies
There's a truth that can't be mocked
The player who takes dives
In the pros will just get rocked.

Holy Diver
You're the star of the masquerade
No need to look so afraid

Fool the zebra
Out of position so you made your scene
Some light can never be seen

North Country Lampoon

I forgot to post this last weekend, but tPB has a new weekly feature, Maroon Lampoon, written by tPB poster SimmerDown. SimmerDown gives RWD a shout-out in this week's preview (and also a shout-out by calling himself Donna Summer on Sunday nights at the '90s), so here's my belated shout-out to him.

Read it.

And Calgary is straight up cheating right now. But they still suck, sorry Booster.

20 October 2007

Redemption Song

#1 tUMD = 4, St. Cloud sqrt "#1 tUMD"

A win? That's great.
A sweep? Even better.
A sweep over an opponent that has killed your team in the past and knocked you out of the WCHA playoffs in triple OT? lkzslxdhfgserukthieugsheroiutyw49r8awujI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I missed the game, as you know, which was very depressing for me, as it was the Mike Curry Season Debut. This is the very last first game that Mike Curry will play for tDogs.

Akins-Greer-Curry = excellent line. As I told Bruce they would be.

So, the PK streak ended. Fine. I think that's a good thing, as it will probably get us to play more disciplined. Maybe we were getting a little too comfortable in our mad PK skillz. It was still a great streak, while it lasted. Maybe Simon and Garfunkel can write a song and mention it. If they can stop hating each other. We did get a most excellent shorthanded goal, which makes me happy. Bryan McGregor's legacy will continue!

Seriously, has Marty Mjelleli been on the Huskies for 10 years? Geez, it feels like he's been around forever.

I am so tired. I don't think this recap is going to go on very much longer, esp. since The Numbers have gotten longer. People are going to be put On Notice. I feel bad, since a St. Cloud sweep deserves a much bigger recap, but it will have to wait til Sunday.

Wins Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 6!
Points Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 16!

My Guys:
MacGregor Sharp: 4!
Michael Gergen: 3 (not in lineup)
Matt McKnight: 2
Mike Curry: 1!

Freshmen: zzz

On Notice:
Travis Gawryletz
Alex Stalock
Evan Oberg
Kyle Schmidt
Rob Bordson
Cody Danberg
Justin Fontaine

Goals only
Matt McKnight
Drew Akins

19 October 2007

Absentee Recap

tUMD 2, SCCC almost-0

Okay, I missed the game. I had work/school, and then tomorrow I have school/work, so I'm going to miss tomorrow's, as well. Sadness. Weirdly, at school, there was a guy wearing a Huskies Hockey sweatshirt, so I mocked and taunted him as I knew we were up 1-0.

The Alleged Webmaster kindly watched the game and took notes for me, but his handwriting was just as terrible as always, so I don't know what he wrote. Gergzilla destroyed the Huskies like they were buildings in Tokyo. Other than that, I don't know what happened. I'm TIRED.

Wins Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 7!
Points Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 18!

My Guys:
MacGregor Sharp: 3
Michael Gergen: 3!
Matt McKnight: 2
Mike Curry: bench cowboy

Freshmen: slackin'

On Notice: still NO ONE!

16 October 2007

The Gauntlet: Duality of Man Edition

This week, RWD interviews SCSU blogger WinTwins, whose site discusses both Husky hockey and Twins baseball. So, don't let the name fool you, I am actually interviewing a hockey blogger.

Please forgive this Gauntlet. I am so, so, so tired. You don't even know the strangeness that I edited out of this edition. I was hallucinating.

RWD: Well, WinTwins, welcome to our show. Have I told you about the fabulous prizes you will win?

WT: No, there are prizes?? I just did this for the notoriety that I'll get from the tens of
people who read your blog!!

RWD: There are no prizes. [I'm broke as a joke.] I was just wondering if I'd accidentally said something like that.

WT: Darn, I was getting excited about the prizes...

RWD: But! We are up to elevens or even twelves of people.

WT: Alright, while that's PRIZE enough!!

RWD: Agreed. I think some of our readers might think I'm crazy (crazier) for interviewing a Twins blogger.

WT: WHY?? What's wrong with a Twins blogger??

RWD: Because this is a hockey blog...

WT: Oh, yeah, that makes sense!

RWD: Did you start the blog with its current dual purpose in mind, or did it sort of evolve because all the kids want to be like RWD? [My milkshake brings all the bloggers to the net.]

WT: Well, I started my blog last year when the Twins had their short-lived playoff hopes with the thought it would be about the Twins. After reading great "girl hockey bloggers", I took a stab at talking hockey too... Baseball will always be my first love, but the off-season is LONG!!

RWD: I think the two teams compliment each other well. It's like 365 days of futility.

WT: EXACTLY!! Hockey's a little easier though since they only play on the weekends. Baseball can get overwhelming.

[Extensive baseball discussion]

RWD: How long have you been a St. Cloud fan?

WT: Well, I grew up near St. Cloud and went to college at St. Ben's. I learned hockey by watching the St. John's team (D3) [coached by tUMD’s own Bah Harrington!] who played at the NHC, and I went to one SCSU game in college and I was hooked! They were so fast and aggressive! The hits and the fights and the great shots!! No comparison to D3 (though I enjoyed St. John's games a lot). My parents decided to get season tickets (SCSU has a big season ticket group of "locals") [I think she means “yokels” here.] and I started going to more and more games. I learned a hatred for the Gophers. [This should be taught starting at birth!] The rest is history. So, to answer your question, about 10 years or so. I'm more of a fan now then I was then, but I've kept up with them for about 10 years.

RWD: Did you get your first snowmobile before then, or after?

WT: Hey! I had my first snowmobile before I even took snowmobile safety class at age 12!!

RWD: LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, please take note of this FINE specimen of St. Cloud fans we have here. As far as fashion is concerned, what labels do you like? Polaris? Carhart?

WT: I KNEW that would be your next question. I'm sorry to say I don't own a single piece of snowmobile brand or Carhart gear. We're not that big of rednecks in my family.

RWD: Do you feel out of place at the NHC then? [The only girl without a big 3 decal on her vehicle!]

WT: Not anymore out of place then I do anywhere in St. Cloud! Most of the fans there just wear their SCSU stuff and leave their Polaris jackets in the car, I think...

RWD: Or rusted out pickup truck...

WT: With the gun in the back window...

RWD: And the confederate flag back window cling thing?

WT: Yeah! Oh, and very few RUSTED pickups. The people in St. Cloud treat their pickups better than their kids!! Shiny, jacked up on lifts, straight piped... [I didn’t know what that meant, until WT explained it to me. I thought "straight-piped" was... like... an alternative to Donald's spliffs that he twisted.]

RWD: Indeed. How do you feel about the rest of tWCHA's perception of St. Cloud's fanbase?

[Extremely long pause in which I had the time to start (and finish!) War and Peace.]

WT: Sorry, thinking about how best to phrase this...

RWD: Oh, bring it all out. The internet is a safe place to tell things you don't want others to know.

WT: I go to games and the student section is rowdy (but certainly not rowdier than other arenas), the season ticket holders are quiet (except me when I sit in my parents’ seats), and everyone's really into seeing their team win. Based solely on that, it seems that SCSU is judged very unfairly. However...

[I ran a marathon during this pause, busted lungs and all.]

WT: I've spent enough time on hockey sites, blogs, and message boards to know that this stuff isn't what we're judged on. Every team has those people that you'd rather NOT be associated with and the internet is where you find the really "great" SCSU fans. I've come to the conclusion that because these people are the loudest (or express themselves the most), these are the people that we are all judged by. That's unfortunate. My parents go to every game and they're not in any way disrespectful to the other teams’ fans or players. For god's sake, my mom claps for the other team sometimes because she feels bad for them if they're losing! The loudest people get heard, though and that's why we are seen in the light we are. Does that make sense?

RWD: Your mom is so cute, I love it.

WT: I know, I just laugh at her...

RWD: I hurt for losing goalies.

WT: I do too, because inevitably, it's all their fault. [Oh, that cheer. So accurate, so cruel.]

RWD: So you would say that "people" on CERTAIN MESSAGE BOARDS in the United States that are devoted to college hockey online are making a bad name for Husky fans?

WT: Um, yeah... I think I'll leave it at some "people" on "message boards in the United States" give Husky fans a bad name. That sounds about right.

RWD: It's my belief that some of this bad blood on that message board in the United States for college hockey online has actually intensified the rivalry between St. Cloud and tUMD, which is actually a good thing. Thoughts?

WT: I agree, I was reading... that message board in the US for college hockey online this week and there really is a good rivalry. Also, after the first round of the playoffs last year, I think it's apparent that these two teams are well-matched and exciting to watch. I'm really looking forward to this weekend. Unlike some "people" I'd never underestimate UMD and assume we were going to win. It's a fun series. I wish I could go up for it!

RWD: I think it is good for both schools, as there is nothing worse than a one-sided rivalry, as we know both schools consider UMTC to be a big rival, but they don't really care.

WT: I know! That drives me crazy. They're so great that they just don't have any rivals?? I still get excited to play UMTC because I love it when we win, but in-state rivals are fun and the schools in MN should get "up" to play each other. Fans are able to attend the away games and that always makes it more fun. I've gone to a lot of UMD/SCSU games at the NHC and they're SO fun! Lots of UMD fans...

RWD: The other reasons this rivalry has been intensified are the Bulldog Rejects that St. Cloud has welcomed onto their roster. Let's talk about The Kronick: ugly or… beyond ugly?

WT: BEYOND!! That chin was a nightmare. It also freaked me out the way his tongue was too big for his mouth and kind of rolled around in there when he was interviewed...

RWD: How could his tongue be too big for his mouth, with all that room?

WT: I don't know, but did you ever see him talk on TV? His tongue seemed to get all weird and rolly and then his speech got more and more garbled... Not pretty. But, he played well against his former team. That's his Husky Claim To Fame...

RWD: But, he's gone this year. Also gone: BOBBY!!!!!11!!!!!1!!!!

WT: Yep, we had some losses this year.

RWD: Is Jase really going to step up and replace him? Or are people in denial?

WT: I don't think anyone honestly thinks Jase can single-handedly replace BOBBY[!!!!!11!!!!!1!!!!]. I was getting annoyed with the "people" talking about how much we were going to suck this year with Jase, because I think he'll do well. (FYI, the "people" are all on the bandwagon now). [And when she says “people” in quotation marks, I think you know what she’s getting at.] Motzko has said he'll use the first weeks of the season to determine what combination of Jase, BJ O'Brien, and Dan Dunn will do the best job of replacing BOBBY[!!!!!11!!!!!1!!!!]. I'm excited to see Dunn this weekend [I am excited to “Sieve!” him this weekend!]; he's spoken of very highly. Jase had a good year last year with the exception of the disappointing loss to UND after not seeing game time for 2 months. Playing weekly, he should do okay...

RWD: I guess we will learn if Motz can recruit the goalies as well as the foreigners. The OBVIOUS formula here is, RECRUIT FOREIGN GOALIE. [I am a genius. I should be a recruiter. It’s so easy! But, I shouldn't be telling my plans to the enemy!]

WT: Yep, he seems to have a knack for those foreign kids!! Hey, that's a GREAT IDEA!! I'm also excited to see if Luca Cunti gets cleared this week. I was disappointed we didn't get to see him in the opening weekend.

RWD: Oh him. His name is bleeped out on the aforementioned message board. I find myself uninterested in making [jokes about his name]. I mean, it's really beneath me.

WT: How mature of you!!!

RWD: I once yelled "Hey Chucko, you sucko!" And I was like, "Did I just say that?" It was like the lowest common denominator. I'm not saying I'm better than that in the sense that I don't like to insult people. [Because I do!] But really, I could think of something more creative.

WT: I understand completely!

RWD: But the police were standing behind me.

WT: Good call on the "clean" insult in THAT case!!

RWD: The whole game.

WT: Darn, I hate it when that happens!

RWD: I was in Mariucci. I think they were shocked someone was cheering.

WT: Oh, that explains it. They'd never heard cheering before so they were entertained by you!

RWD: It was doubleplus ungood for them.

WT: They probably thought you were one of those fans they had to watch out for - didn't want you running out onto the ice or throwing anything onto the ice ... oh wait, that's St. Cloud fans!! [This is great, she’s doing all the work for me!]

RWD: Who from Da Huskies is going to light it up this year?

WT: I'm kind of excited by some of the freshman this year. Garrett Roe looked great this weekend, as did Tony Mosey. I thought Andreas Nodl looked slightly off, but he and Li'l Ryan Lasch should have good years as well, this year. Brent Borgen, our little transfer from UMTC looked like he had ADD, skating around in the pre-game, but got it together during the game. He might be a contributor. This will be a make or break year for St. Cloud boy John Swanson. He needs to get it together. So far, in two games, he's been really aggressive and has been great on the PK...

RWD: Tell me who the hottest Husky is. Other than Motz, who I know you love. [In his Guess? jeans!]

WT: Hmmm, I think Brett Barta is the closest to my type on the team. The pic on my freshman blog post is HOT!! Garrett Roe is a cute guy, but LITTLE! Of course, I found when I did my previews that both Ryan Peckskamp AND David Carlisle have been mentioned on RWD All-WCHA postings... Jase is cute too. But, HOT?? Tough sell!! [Well, they don't all have to be hott.]

RWD: I don't see the Motz Appeal.

WT: I don't think Motz is HOT, but for an older guy, he's good-looking. And, he just seems like an all-around good guy. Plus, he's done wonders for our team...

RWD: It's reverse-cougarism. [Just… you don’t want to know.]

WT: Hmmm, I guess it is!!

RWD: Is [Craig Dahl] better or worse than Juttz?

WT: Oooh, tough question! I've heard they are/were very similar. Jutting might be slightly uglier, but Dahl made a habit of belittling his players, much as Jutting is rumored to do. He had a "my way or the highway" mentality, also similar to Jutting. I think Jutting is worse because he's actually good (bad?) enough to have the AD on his side, making his firing/forced resignation much less likely. And, Dahl is gone and distance makes the heart grow fonder. [Or, you know, fond at all?] I haven't seen him at a game in a while... thank god. My dad always had to shush me when he'd be sitting behind us. [How cute that he still goes to the games!]

RWD: What do you expect to see this weekend?

WT: I think that the guys are going to come out fast and play aggressively. We have a couple new freshmen who are hard hitters! Fun! The Huskies will win Friday night with Jase in goal, in a close game, 3-2. Saturday night, I'm not sure, since I've never seen Dan Dunn play, but I'm hoping for a win, of course. It should be interesting. Going into this series, it would seem we have a defensive team against an offensive team. What does this mean? Either a 1-0 game or a blowout. We'll see. I think last Saturday was good for the Huskies. They now realize BOBBY[!!!!!11!!!!!1!!!!] is gone. They aren't at liberty to slack on the D with the confidence of having BOBBY[!!!!!11!!!!!1!!!!] stopping everything behind them. If they can step up the D, and the power play (obviously), this weekend should be the start of a very nice season! BUT, I like the Dogs, so a tie or ONE loss wouldn't kill me as much as if we were playing, say, the Gophers or Sioux!! Is that a stupid thing to say in the Gauntlet?? [Or in general? But no, it’s always easier to lose to a team that you otherwise like.] Oh well! Go Huskies!

RWD: We have a very strong defencive team this year. [Shout-out to my Canadian homies! I’m spelling in your language, eh?] And those defencemen are very capable of scoring.

WT: So, anything could happen. I'm not deluding myself that Jase can blank everyone since he had a shut out against Canisius [WE had a shut out, too, against Northern Michigan, a much stronger opponent!], but he's capable of stopping shots and our team is very capable of scoring some goals, so it should be interesting to see how it all pans out.

RWD: Do you have a prediction for this weekend, score-wise?

WT: Friday SCSU 3, UMD 2; Saturday SCSU 5, UMD 3. I type this hoping you realize that I SUCK at predictions!!! [I concur, this prediction does suck.]

RWD: I'm hoping that you just jinxed your team.

WT: I'm sure you are! I couldn't possible act like I thought they'd LOSE though. What kind of fan would I be??

RWD: Yeah, I mean, this isn't an NCAA playoff game or anything. Oooh! Got it in just under the wire!

WT: OUCH! How did you possible wait 2 hours and 9 minutes to throw that in?? [Little known fact: tGauntlet starts out three, four, maybe five times longer than the final product. I am chatty.]

RWD: One final question: what should I be for Halloween? I was thinking Don Cherry, but no one would get it.

WT: Oh, no idea on the Halloween thing. I'm still not sure what I'm going to be!! [Suggestions welcome, comrades!]

And, the Wild just lost in the shoot-out, so I think it's a good time to go to bed. Ugggggggggggh.

14 October 2007

Showcase Showdown

We won!

MEg will tell you that there is no real "winner" in the Superior Showcase, but I'm going to go ahead and declare that tDogs have won.

UMD 1-0-1
MTU 1-1-0
NMU 1-1-0
LSSU 0-1-1

This also means, of course, tWCHA remains superior on Superior!

And, because we all love it... that dumb chick from The Price is Right!

13 October 2007

The Big 4-0

Bulldogs 4, Wildcats 0.

Okay, so I didn't put up a game preview. I wasn't going to say much, except something about a vintage WCHA series, and how we beat them in both games last year, and how the Northern bloggers were afraid of The Gauntlet, even though one of them said last year that it was his dream to be interviewed by me. So, you didn't miss much, and you're not going to get much out of me tonight, either.

WE WON, which is TOTALLY SWEET, with Al getting the SHUTOUT! SO EXCITING!

PK was awesome! We have killed 42 straight penalties! There were some interesting choices out there on the PK tonight, but they clearly worked out.
PP was excellent! I felt like it was much improved over last night.

Also, please don't fan on clearing attempts in front of your own net.
And finally, Al should not be flopping out to the freaking hash marks to poke check the puck away.

Okay, that's about it. Rough day for poor old RWD.

Wins Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 8 (NC)
Points Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 20 (NC)

My Guys:
MacGregor Sharp: 3!
Matt McKnight: 2!
Michael Gergen: 1!
Mike Curry: poised for the kill

Freshmen: slackin'

On Notice: Nobody until after the SCCC series.

Next week, tUMD "welcomes" St. Cloud, according to Bruce. I laugh at that assessment.

And, a poem, just for Bruce (following some whitespace for Donald!):
Roses are red
Violets are blue
I am schizophrenic
and so am I.

12 October 2007

2-2, 2-2, 2-2

UMD Attack Dogs 2, Lake State Lakers 2.

Well, here we are folks, the long wait is over, the season is underway, and there's already controversy! Not in tDogs game, of course, but in the Gopher/RPI game, where the hometown call was in full effect. I don't want to get into it, as this is not a Gopher site, but I had the game on TV while I was watching tDogs, so I did see what went down. And it was UGLY.

Conversely, in the Bulldogs game, I wouldn't say the officiating was that poor. I mean, I may have raised my arm a few times when I felt the officials missed something, but I did appreciate the Bulldogs were allowed to play with a physicality unseen in the past few seasons. Kemper the Wrecker was breaking skulls all over the place, and overall the guys were playing the body a lot more. I can't wait to see what Mike Curry can do with the New Bulldogs. Elbows will be flying!

I was pretty disappointed with some of the first power plays, as I like to see a lot more shots on the power play, and for crying out loud, when you go into the corner with someone, YOU COME OUT WITH THE PUCK WHEN YOU HAVE THE MAN ADVANTAGE. You just do, okay? I don't care how you do it. But then I was placated with a power play goal, and our penalty kill kept the streak alive, so all in all, I'm pleased with the outcome. We did have some interesting PP units, as I saw Fontaine out there quite a bit (the B2 feed makes it hard to see 1. numbers on jerseys and 2. the puck, which is a bit challenging), but hey, we got a goal.

And the freshman. Oh mother, were they fun to watch! When I got the lineups for the game, I thought hmm... an all-freshman line... I don't know about that. Then I figured they'd just see limited ice time. And yet, they were out there regular-shifting (it seems... can't tell who was on the ice, remember?) and they seemed pretty good. We already know that I am a big fan of Rob Bordson (he is #15, and I tend to like players with #15!), but The Danberg is quickly becoming my favorite freshman. Those guys seemed to cycle fairly well and hustled. I felt they had a few pretty good scoring chances as well.

It was very, very wrong for there to be a player named Schwab (except, no e) from Saskatchewan playing, and have it not be the Almighty One.

Trent Palm = awesome. We are going to get so many freaking goals from the defencemen this year. Garrison was letting it rip, Chaser was letting it rip, Palm was letting it rip, Oberg is known to give some offensive production, Meyers has proven himself offensively already, and Gawryletz looks like a serial killer, so no one is going to score on him. We have not seen Chad Huttel yet, but I have heard he likes to bang around the body (The Hutt was also a halfback/middle linebacker for the Hawks), which I always appreciate.

Al made some crucial saves, but I could always, always, always use more rebound control and puck awareness. I'll never get tired of that, so don't stop, baby. I am overly critical of goalies, so I'm going to stop there, because seriously, what do I know?

My Guys played well, as they ALWAYS DO, for they are My Guys. MacGregor Sharp was a one-man playmaking machine, and he assisted on Trent Palm's goal, which was totally sweet and right off the face-off. I love goals like that, and I feel like we have the defencemen to score a lot of those. I love the element of surprise. Gergen created a scoring chance out of absolutely nowhere, and let me tell you, it is no surprise that Sharp and Gergzilla led the team with 5 shots apiece. Matt McKnight played to his usual Matt McKnight awesomeness, although he did not stand out as much as the other two. I probably should have taken notes on the game, as I'd have more to say. Mike Curry, as we all know, did not play. I can only assume that he would have had a hat trick and prevented both LSSU goals.

I am SO GLAD I am able to watch the games on TV now. Seriously, it has made recapping WAY more fun, and I can get a little more technical, although that is not my strong suit. $50 is SO worth it for the season pass!

Tomorrow's forecast will be a little late, as I have something going on all day, and then have to go in to work for an hour or so. I can't say that it will be all that exciting, excecpt that I'm not very happy Tech lost to Northern, as we don't need Northern to come in with any momentum. However, they do have to bus it over to Duluth, so that should wear them down a bit.

THE NUMBERS (back despite zero demand!)
Wins Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 8 (conference-only)
Points Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: 20 (ditto)

My Guys:
MacGregor Sharp: 1
Everyone Else: Zipparoo

Nobody scored... yet

On Notice (for those who don't know, people are On Notice when they go more than 4 games without a goal):
No one, obvs.

TOMORROW: Win! Win! Win! Let history repeat itself, copying last year's opening weekend! Then don't let history repeat itself ANYMORE, as the rest of the first half kind of sucked a lot.


So, a little over 3 hours to go.

I'm watching Boston College/Michigan on FSN right now, getting ready to WATCH some Bulldog hockey. I paid my $50 for the season pass, which is going to be so exciting. Unless there are many technical difficulties, in which case, this will occur:
Anyway, tonight we are playing Lake Superior State. tDogs have not played the Lakers since 1993's NCAA tournament, so I have no idea how the two squads will match up. Educated guess: tDogs will murder them.
This "Superior Showcase" business has been in the works for years. It is my understanding there is not a "winner" to this tournament (making me not want to call it a tournament), but rather conference bragging rights. It seems silly, since everyone already knows tWCHA reigns supreme in college hockey. I think the idea is fun, much more interesting than one of the many GICTSWDGEAOOTs that occur during the year (why do the Gophers have three? It seems so dumb. And yes, I realize the IceBreaker participants are not really cupcakes this year.) It's a fun regional thing. Next year, I would imagine tDogs will be travelling to the UP to take on their opponents at home, which would be an entertaining road trip for fans. We shall see what sort of position RWD is in next year, job-wise, before we make any of those decisions.
I'm having trouble concentrating, so I think it's time to wrap things up. I'll be around after the game with My Guys updates!

11 October 2007


Yeah, I'm ready.

Never mind that I am sitting here practically on my deathbed with bronchitis. I am freaking ready.

I haven't adjusted that ticker in months, and now it's reading zero days. ZERO DAYS.

I have some notes for tomorrow night:

ONE, Mike Curry is not playing due to a "violation of team rules." This is distressing, naturally, but like I told Bruce, he would be Mike Curry if he wasn't violating a rule or two now and then.

TWO, those of us unlucky enough to miss seeing this game in person will be able to watch the game over the internet on the B2 Network. I should be compensated for this advertisement. Due to the amazing timing of my illness, I will now be able to watch the game.

THREE, there is a hilarious picture of the seniors on the UMD hockey page. I love it, and would like a larger size of it to tack up on my ceiling above my bed.

FOUR, Jake Hendrickson, a prolific centerman out of Burnsville High School, committed to tDogs for 2009.

FIVE, DHG of tPenalty Box is looking for a columnist to write a weekly pregame article for his site. Great hockey minds with a knack for humor are encouraged to apply.


10 October 2007

Me Me Me-Me-Me

Did you know I was an expert? Because I was totally unaware.
WCH asked me some questions, and I attempted some answers.

07 October 2007

Friendly Reminder

RWD would just like everyone to know that the Gauntlet has been thrown down to the bloggers of Tech Still Sucks, and they as yet have not even acknowledged it. Will they give me satisfaction, or be branded cowards for the rest of their days?

05 October 2007

The Gauntlet: Multimedia Edition

That's right, baby. It's back. Sort of. For the first The Gauntlet of the season, RWD interviewed sometime Bulldog photographer, copy-editor, and mixmaster Larry R.

RWD: So, usually I am better prepared, with planned lines of questioning, but since I'm not out to trap you into admitting something or trying to make you look crazy, I'm not as organized.

Larry: Considering most of the tens [of people reading RWD…] already think I'm nuts, feel free to fire away.

RWD: Tens of people may be exaggerating.

Larry: Well I know I read it, not with any dedication, but I've been there multiple times. [Oooh! That means elevens of readers!]

RWD: Superb! That makes me very happy. Perhaps you could start out by informing my readers who don't know you exactly how you are involved with the UMD hockey program.

Larry: Now my involvement is as a volunteer. I'm available to them as needed for whatever type [of] help they need: stats, photography and operations director for game nights. Back in 1997, I was involved in setting up their music system, and brought full time planned music to games. I did that for 5 years, and now it’s more of a support role. [Isn't Larry the genius behind "Don't Stop Believin'," which has been ripped off by everyone from other sports teams to tSopranos?]

RWD: How long have you been a Bulldogs fan?

Larry: I'm really aging myself, but I've been a fan since 1983. I became a Dogs fan when Mom said I couldn't go to Madison to go to college because it was too big, so I traded Cardinal Red and White in for Maroon and Gold.

RWD: The best choice you've ever made.

Larry: Without a doubt, the friends I've made with my involvement at UMD are priceless. [For buying additional friends, there's MasterCard.]

RWD: Were you a college hockey fan in college?

Larry: I was a freshman in 1985. I waited outside (it was a true camp out back then) the Thursday night before the Monday tickets went on sale. I failed my first collegiate exam because I was out drinking when I should have been studying for a [microeconomics] exam. I was a season ticket holder for four years, and my last year, I worked for the Sports Info Office, so I didn't need a ticket.

RWD: So that's a yes.

Larry: Definitely. I think I missed a total of 6 home games in 5 years.

RWD: 5 years is a bit accelerated compared to some current tUMD fans. [RWD included!]

Larry: I was ready to go. 1987-1990 weren't the best hockey years. Seriously, I love Dale Jago, but top scorer?

RWD: I'll just note that here... *man-love for Dale Jago*

Larry: I'm sure his wife will appreciate that.

RWD: Are the college years a bit of a blur for you, or do you have some outstanding memories of Great Moments in Bulldog History?

Larry: I don't have my media guide within reach to cheat, so I'm all on my own. It started so strong with Hull. Just to watch him skate was amazing. I remember a shot that he took from the blue line that hit behind the top rows at the top of the DECC and bounced back to where the Zamboni comes out. It might have broken the safety net; it was that hard. After that, you know the team trended down, so it wasn't a great set of years to be there. We had some fun, I traveled a lot to the away games, but there were certainly more nights drinking over losses than partying over winning… It was different back then, the team had house parties and they lived at the Warehouse, so it was never a boring time.

RWD: Team house parties! Sounds exciting! [It must have been much easier to be a stalker back then.] Where was this "Warehouse" located?

Larry: One of the many Park Point Hotels is now occupying its place. It was right next to the Burger King that used to be on Park Point. It was "THE" college bar during the time I was in school. Grandma's was for the upscale kids and where girls went because they didn't want to get spilled on. Everyone else was at the Warehouse.

RWD: I would definitely be at the Warehouse. [Getting Old Milwaukee dumped on me and getting confused for a guy, obvs.]

Larry: You would have been right at home there. It was definitely a tPB type of place.

RWD: Would you say there was more interest in Bulldog hockey back then (both in the community and among students), or less?

Larry: I think it has followed the same course it does today. 1984-86 there would be people scalping tickets outside, much like the end of 2004 and to some extent 2005. But when the team isn't winning, the interest goes down. My first senior year, nobody waited in line for student season tickets.

RWD: It goes in cycles, I suppose. It would be nice if those winning cycles were longer.

Larry: I think that everyone wishes that. I'd be happy to finish in the top 5 every year. In this league that is all you can ask for.

RWD: So after college, did you stay in Duluth or double-cross it back to Wisconsin?

Larry: I left for 6 years, moved a lot working for a company in Wisconsin, but they opened an office in Duluth and I moved back [for awhile].

RWD: Do you still cheer for Bucky, or have you seen the light?

Larry: I [currently] live about 90 minutes from Madison, and so I still cheer for them when they don't play the Dogs, but you won't see me in any Wisconsin hockey gear anytime soon. I'm a huge Badger Football and Basketball fan. But part of that comes from the fact there is absolutely no way you will every see me with an M on shirt.

RWD: So you save your real hatred for UMTC.

Larry: I have absolutely no love for their program at all.

RWD: Back when you were in college, who were some of your favorites (other than your bf Dale)?

Larry: Hull, of course, but I was more a fan of the working class guys. Joe DeLisle will probably be one of my all time favorite players.

RWD: When did you start doing photography for the games?

Larry: I traveled with the team in 2004 to Boston, and I had my camera there. In 2005, I got a call from Jess Myers (who was working for Inside College Hockey) asking if I could shoot a game, and I've been covering for them ever since.

RWD: Who do/did you enjoy photographing the most?

Larry: I like shooting goaltenders [I agree, I sometimes feel like shooting goaltenders, too.]; they provide the best action shots. Alex is a lot of fun to shoot because he is so mobile. Elliott from Wisconsin always seemed to come up big, and Lamoureux from North Dakota provided a great shot that ended up being a save that was ESPN's play of the day during the Frozen Four. I have that as a poster that I'm waiting to get signed. [Larry = the ultimate Fan Boy.]

RWD: Are most of the photos from the Bulldogs' site your own?

Larry: The school has an official photographer, so most are his. I try to schedule my trips home when he isn't there so I can get something up on the web.

RWD: Do you ever do photos for the DNT?

Larry: I do some freelance for them; I do some work when they don't have coverage and I'm in town or if they are on the road, I'll send pictures up.

RWD: You would think they would have a staff photographer just for the Bulldogs.

Larry: Their sports department is pretty small and they have a huge area to cover. Budgets just don't allow them to keep someone like that on staff.

RWD: I just laughed. What exactly are they covering that's more important than the Bulldogs? Smelt fishing? [No offense, DA and Gramps.]

Larry: I'm sure they spend a great deal of time covering things like the DHW [Drunk Hockey Walk] [Brilliant! I couldn't think of a better use of resources. Except that nothing I do on the DHW is anything I'd want documented for the public domain]. That goes in cycles too. When they win, they get more coverage. When I was in Boston, they had 3 people out there, so keep winning is the rule to better coverage. That’s why the women’s team gets its fair share.

RWD: Oh man, you touched on the hot button issue. [Bracing for impact.]

Larry: I am usually on the wrong side of that issue.

RWD: I don't have an issue with women's hockey, other than no checking. Who would you say are some of your current favorite Bulldogs? Or are you going to Ciskie-out and say all of them?

Larry: Nah. I don't have to deal with them on a daily basis or need them to keep a talk show running. Do I get bonus points for Mr. Curry? Jason Garrison is one of them, I was a big Bryan McGregor fan (they'll miss him) and I like Alex because he is so unpredictable.

RWD: Well, don't lie. If you don't like Curry, don't say you do to suck up to me. Not that anyone could NOT like him.

Larry: Not knowing what you like about him aside, he is a great presence on the ice, and I like how he works. And if he ever gets paired up in the penalty box, you can learn a lot why he gets under peoples skin.

RWD: I'm a fan of that. Everything he does it seems is designed to irritate someone.

Larry: He’s a lot like Stauffacher, except bigger. [Um, like a whole freaking foot bigger.]

RWD: I'm surprised you would find "unpredictability" in a goaltender "likeable." [I'm sure Scott Sandelin thinks it's a laugh riot.]

Larry: That’s the photographer talking. My dad would like him to be more predictable.

RWD: How about your all-time Bulldog favorites?

Larry: Hull, Podein, DeLisle, Plante, Lessard (love the accent).

RWD: What do you think about Junior's professional situation?

Larry: He has enough talent to play in the league. I'm not an expert on NHL clubs and their needs, but he could be an every day player for someone.

RWD: Evidently no one felt that way, as he cleared waivers and will be in the AHL. [With the extremely sexy Chris Conner.]

Larry: Hopefully he'll end up in Milwaukee and I can go see him play. I'll drop $12 a night to go watch him skate.

RWD: If you were the coach of the Bulldogs, what would you do differently?

Larry: Not that Scott needs my help, but I'd really like to see two things: get someone who isn't afraid to crash the offensive zone with the puck, and I'd really like to see them try something different with the power play. [NO FREAKING KIDDING. Maybe they need to try a little more cowbell.]

RWD: That was a nice roundabout way of seeing where you stand on the coaching issue.

Larry: He has a tough job, and I imagine there is some real pressure on him to win. I think losing Nisky is the big loss, my understanding that while UMD may miss the scoring touch, they'll be better off as a team without Raymond.

RWD: Wow, can I print that without being sued for libel?

[some stuff]

RWD: Most Bulldogs fans have two outlooks to the season: what they hope will happen, and what they believe will happen. The two rarely align. What are your predictions and hopes?

Larry: As a lifelong Packer fan, I know how that goes. I think they finish 5th, and end up making it to the WCHAs. I always hope they make a run, because it makes the post season more fun when you have somebody to cheer for at the rink.

RWD: So you think, realistically, they are going to be 5th in tWCHA? [As you can probably tell, I'm still trying to wrap my mind around this.]

Larry: I think they have a shot at it. Alex is going to have to carry the team, and he does have the talent. If the team gets off to a good start, they have the ability to catch people. If the team comes out as a team, they'll be able to string some wins together, and that will give them the confidence they need to be successful. But then, I was always the [delusional] optimistic guy.

RWD: To wrap things up, as this could go on all night, I'll open it up to any comments you want to make about Bulldog hockey.

Larry: I think the Dogs will surprise some people this year. I'm excited for the year, The Superior Cup with some teams that used to be good rivals, and a league that is always stacked with talent. If they get some league wins early they can position themselves for a playoff run. Unfortunately, the schedule at the end of the year is a big test. But that’s when you'll see what character they have.

RWD: Any bold predictions, or "calls" as Bert Blyleven says?

Larry: Wisconsin wins the league in a runaway. The three first round picks that they have make them a force to be dealt with right away. That being said, they probably finish 4th.

RWD: Whoa, it's not a call unless you believe it's going to happen. No qualifiers. No reneging.

Larry: I believe they have the ability to run away with the league. But, if reality sets in...

RWD: Who's your breakout player of the year for tDogs?

Larry: Put your money on Michael Gergen. [I have none, thanks for reminding me.] I think he has the most to gain from Raymond leaving early. If he steps up and takes the offensive role that they brought him in with, watch out.

RWD: Ooh, he is My Guy, other than Curry. Most Impactful Freshman?

Larry: Evan Oberg. He'll step up and replace Nisky right away. Close second for Cody Danberg if he stays healthy.

RWD: Larry's Personal Player of the Year?

Larry: Andrew Carroll. He provides the leadership and will lead the team in points.

RWD: Well, that's the good word.

I can't believe I friggin' forgot to ask him who the hottest Bulldog was!

02 October 2007

My Super Ex-Bulldogs

Okay, this part may be total garbage, but exciting news!

Matt Niskanen made the lineup for the Dallas Stars and will be playing tomorrow night! YOU SEE, PEOPLE! This is what HAPPENS when you are My Guy of the Year. FAME AND GLORY. I know I'll be watching Vs tomorrow night.

Additionally, Mason Raymond is slated to play on a line with the Swedish Twins. All I can think of is that commercial where the Sedins were hired for that bachelor party and they brought a crappy boombox and tentatively started doing the cabbage patch.