Posted on: February 13, 2009 2:11 pm
Edited on: February 13, 2009 6:13 pm

Hockeytown, USA Goes Octopus-Free

premature articulations:

Sheesh.  Some hockey town.  The Detroit Red Wings put a 4-2 wax job on the Minnesota Wild, and not one single suckered cephalopod hits the ice?!  Warped minds have suspected for a long time that most of the Red Wings bandwagon is made up of yuppie lawyers who don't watch hockey until March -- and probably think that octopus is for eating.  The ocean of empty seats at the Loo did little to alter that theory.  Hockeytown, my ass.  But enough talk about my good side, eh?  It's time to fire up the Warpy Psychlotron and hand out some quarks:

dangling sub-atomic participles:

Top Quark(s):  Nobody on the Wild is worthy of the Top Quark, so we'll give this one to last year's almost-a-wild-player Marian Hossa.  In a strange twist of irony, I mentioned to a certain Wings Diva yesterday that the defensive play of Martin Skoula, Brent Burns and Kim Johnsson might make Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk laugh too hard to get off a decent shot.  Sure enough, those two were kept off the scoreboard, but I forgot to mention Hosehead in yesterday's post -- and guess who pots two goals?  The Wild were one of several teams who offered Hoser more money last year, but it looks like he made a good call to go with the Wings if it's a Cup he wants before he retires.  Once he's got his ring, then he can spend the rest of his career playing in front of a live audience in real Hockeytown, USA.

Up Quark(s):  Despite the 4-2 final, both goalies played extremely well to keep the scoreboard looking more like hockey game than a football game.  Josh Harding gave up a goal on a rebound that he could've prevented, and gave up another softie on a wraparound, but he also made 39 saves -- many of them quality shots from Wings players who teed off on a Wild defensive corps that looked like it was on bad quaaludes.  Again.  Chris Osgood was also sharp, stopping the Wild cold on several good scoring chances when the outcome of the game was still undecided.

Brent Burns gets an Up Quark call for his nice goal.  Finally, Burnsie just took a nice, quick shot -- instead of hanging on to the puck in hopes that the other team might decide to pull the goalie while he's out there skating around and coughing up the puck.  Nick Schultz continues to pick his defensive game back up to where warped minds are used to seeing it: unspectacular, but rock solid.  Apparently, Schultzie has stopped relying on the Dildaphonic Duo for veteran leadership, because his play has improved markedly in the last few games.

Down Quark(s):  Burnsie also gets a Down Quark for his continued putrid defensive play.  Last night, it looked like #8 and #41 swapped jerseys before the game.  The Red Wings fans -- or at least the few dozen who showed up last night -- also get a downer call for the lack of octupus action.  All is not lost, though: I believe the Wings have one more tilt against the Wild later on at the X, so Detroiters are only one live octopus away from gaining another passionate fan for a Wings Cup.

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 Martin Skoula's name here on a permanent basis.

Once again, Skooly actually played a decent game.  #41 did make a handful of his usual bumbling plays, and also did quite a bit of his usual standing by the goalpost facing the wrong way routine, but he did made enough good plays to cancel out the bad plays and end up quarkless for the game.  Since he seems to play better when I leave him permanently in Bottom Quark Land, I'm not going to change the luck now.

The real Bottom Quark last night goes to Kim Johnsson, who continues to play "defense" as if he's afraid that people might think he's gay if he touches another guy.  The Five Million Dollar Swedish Turnstile was in typical form last night: non-defending players driving to the net, then abandoning them at the last second and hanging his partner out to dry.  Schultzie looked none too pleased after Detroit's wraparound goal, and #5 appeared to be the source of his disgust.  According to the Pioneer Press, several scouts were at the X for Wednesday night's game against the Avalanche, and Johnsson was one of the players supposedly drawing trade interest because of his minutes munching durability (heck, it's easy to stay healthy if ya never touch anyone, eh?)  If Doug Risebrough manages to unload the European Salary Cap Boat Anchor for anything more than a dozen used water bottles, he gets my vote for NHL executive of the year.

Strange Quark(s):  So what exactly is it with all of the empty seats in "Hockeytown"??  If I didn't know better, I'd swear it was Atlanta Thrashers Fan Night at the Loo.  Heck, I haven't seen that many empty seats in a loo since the Republikkkans got off (no pun intended:) at the Minneapolis-St.Paul airport before their kihnvention.

Charmed Quark(s):  Thankfully for the Detroit Red Wings organization, warped minds are never short on ideas to get more fans in the seats.  The obvious answer to making Joe Louis Arena look something like a hockey town again would be to work a trade for Claude Lemieux before the deadline.  If that doesn't get fans packing the seats, I dunno what will.  And as a free bonus, the Wings will have the final piece of the proverbial puzzle to cement another Stanley Cup championship this year.  You're welcome in advance for the free marketing information.Laughing

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 colliders", in case your twisted mind was thinking about chemistry instead of physics...)

post-dramatic sin drones:

And in Kihnclusion:  The Wild kihntinue to tease fans with the old "good game, bad game" routine.  Last night's game was basically an expected loss, but time is running out for the good guys to put some space between themselves and the edge of the playoff bubble.  With a brutal schedule that sees the Wild playing 12 of 16 games on the road in March, the good guys need to snatch up every point they can while the schedule is still in their favor this month.  A spanking wax job on the Senators tomorrow night would be a good start.  GO WILD!!!

...and now, a word from our spawn's heirs...

If my wife to be or not to be is watching, now that you're finally showing some interest in football, whaddya say we work on the spread formation a few times, eh?  To the rest of you, thanx for tuning in, and remember: If the women don't find ya handsome, they should at least find ya handy.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com