Well, it's official: we can stick a fork in the Minnesota Wild's playoff chances this year, because they're done. Sure, there are still a couple of dozen games left to be played, and sure, it's possible to go from 10th to 5th in one night and vice versa, but playoff bound teams don't go around blowing 3-0 leads at home to easy opponents. It's bad enough to lose a game and fail to gain two points (hey, it's no disgrace to get waxed by the Red Wings), but to have those points all but in hand and then choke 'em away -- especially to the Ottawa freaking Senators (a.k.a. this winning streak is hosing us out of the Tavares lottery) -- is the final straw. It's a good thing this was a three day weekend, otherwise warped minds would've been tempted to write this blog Saturday night after the game, and the language would've no doubt gotten me banned:) As it is, the Warpy Psychlotron has had some time to cool off, which is probably a good thing.
dangling sub-atomic participles:
Top Quark(s): No doubt about it: Owen Nolan was the player of the game Saturday night. Two goals and a sweet assist is not bad for a period's work. If Jacques Lemaire hadn't talked the team into playing "old time" defensive shell hockey between periods, Nolan might've given Kobe Bryant a run for the money for high scorer of the night. Warped minds were majorly down on Doug Risebrough's offseason move to sign Olden Nolan to a two year deal, but these days, it's looking like the smartest move he's made in the last two years.
Up Quark(s): After a brief "slump", Pierre-Marc Bouchard is back in scoring form. #96 and #11 are clicking together extremely well, with Antti Miettinen and Eric Belanger filling in admirably in the odd spot. All of which probably means that it's only a matter of shifts until Lemaire decides to put 'em on four separate lines.
Down Quark(s): Brent Burns gets a Down Quark for his continued putrid defensive play. If this sounds like a repeat of the previous blog entry or three, it is. #8 plays more and more like Kim Johnsson every game he's out there. His recent lack of physical defensive play wouldn't be so bad if his offense were effective, but lately, his offensive rushes have come at annoyingly wrong times, and more often than not, Burnsie hangs his partner out to dry. Jacques Lemaire was absolutely right to be livid at him for the tying Sens goal, but he should be twice as mad at Kim Johnsson, because:
Bottom Quark(s): In order to cut down on the amount of typing I'll need to do on further entries, I might as well put Kim Johnsson's name here on a permanent basis, and fill in the needed details later. The Swedish Salary Cap Boat Anchor plays "defense" as if he's afraid people will think he's gay if he's seen touching another guy. The closest thing Johnsson does to "checking" is the occasional sticking out of the arm or stick, which forwards easily skate through on their way to the net while #5 gets spun around like a five million dollar turnstile.
Johnsson was in Bottom Quark form Saturday, letting the Senators back into the game with his dildaphonic defense on the first two goals. I thought the ref might wave off the first Sens goal for goalie interference -- on Johnsson. After non-defending one player, Johnsson decided the smartest thing to do would be to park himself in the crease and get in Niklas Backstrom's way. On the second Sens tally, #5 decided to abandon the man with the puck behind the net, skate about halfway to the intended recipient of the pass (hey, we wouldn't wanna get too close to another guy, eh?) then position himself to set up a perfect screen. I swear, the Wild could easily gain a goal a game on offense by having Johnson pretend to defend the other net whenever we have the puck.
Strange Quark(s): In order to test a Warpy theory of CBS blog scoring logic, I'll make one small change (adding the extra "s" in Johnsson's name above to correct the spelling) after somebody has posted a comment to this blog, in order to see if the score suddenly drops into negative numbers. I don't think I pissed off that many Wings fans on my last blog; even though I tried to, I think they've wised up to the fact that I like to get their goats, 'cause they've been guarding their farm animals a lot better lately.
Charmed Quark(s): Yes, it's official! Against my better instincts, Martin Skoula is once again removed from the Permanent Bottom Quark kihntinuum. Last time I removed him from there, he started playing like his old self again and put together a forgettable string of brutal performances, but I've decided to tempt fate and try removing him again. Besides, Johnsson is so much worse than Skooly these days (not to mention about five times more expensive) that the time has come to christen the New Dildaphonic Duo: Kim Johnsson and Brent Burns.
The Invisible Higgs Boson Award(s): At the rate things are progressing, the Europeans will fire up their Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and disCERN the real Higgs particle before Marian Gaborik is seen in skates again. It's enough to make warped minds fire up their THC (that would be "titanic hadron collider", in case your twisted mind was thinking about chemistry instead of physics...)
post-dramatic sin drones:
And in Kihnclusion: Playoffs? Playoffs?! Are you kidding me? Playoffs?! Don't talk to me about playoffs! Next up is an expected home loss to the Calgary Flames. Naturally, I'll be cheering for a Wild win, but let's face it: the Flames own us. Maybe if I abstain from ending this blog entry with GO WILD!!! the luck will change. GO WILD!!! ...uhhhh... wait a minute...
...and now, a word from our spawn's heirs...
If my wife to be or not to be is watching, the butterfly position isn't just for goalies anymore, ya know. To the rest of you, thanx for tuning in, and remember: Confucius says men who study calculus find life full of limits.