Seems as though most are predicting at the very least a bloodbath in this one. To me, and perhaps it's nothing more than old habits dying hard, but this game scares me that the Canucks are going to mail it in and play down to their level. And that, my friends is one hell of a long way to stoop. The Flames showed sparks of life after GM Darryl Sutter resigned, only to have the team that wrote the book on lowly, the New York Islanders come in and hand them a loss on home ice the other night. My big concern is the Canucks not taking the Flames seriously. More after the jump...
Some may see teams like Chicago as our biggest rivals, but for those of us who remember the 80's, the Flames shall always occupy that special place in our hearts, along with other despicable things like Nazis, boy bands and Marshmallow Peeps. I don't like to see the Canucks beat the Flames, I like to see them pound them into dust. It really feels that any victory over Calgary of less than three goals is almost a disappointment. From kicked in goals to obnoxious fans and over-hyped players, they are the ones some of us love to hate.
The state the Flames are in now seems to be a surprise to some, yet since their appearance in the Cup finals in 2004, this team has slowly been eroding, and the blame lies at the hands of Darryl Sutter. His steadfast refusal to change the structure and style of hockey in Calgary has the team living in some kind of timewarp, living in a pre-lockout haze. Sure, they're playing hockey, but it's not really the same game everyone else is playing (save for New Jersey, our pal Lou also suffers from this affliction).
Kent Wilson over at Flames Nation seems to think the Flames 4th line of Tim Jackman, David Moss, and Tom Kostopoulous will fare well against Alex Bolduc, Tanner Glass and Mason Raymond. I would take that matchup any day but hey, this game isn't going to come down to the 4th lines, it's all about the first two lines. Can the Flames keep up with the Sedin line, and then there's Ryan Kesler and the 2nd line to worry about.
All in all, the Canucks should be able to handle the Flames with little difficulty. The problem I have with this is the Canucks have to turn in an absolute stinker one of these days. And of all the teams to do it to, this one would be the worst.
The Canucks might have to briefly share the NHL lead with another team besides the Detroit Red Wings tonight as Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh face each other. I sure hope TSN posts the score because I will be like most Canadians watching the gold medal game at the World Juniors as Team Canada takes on the Russians. This game will be an all-out war, with the Russians looking to redeem themselves after getting beaten handily by the Canadians in the tournament opener. The USA and Sweden will battle for bronze this afternoon, one team still fumbling over excuses for why they blew a late 3rd period lead, the other simply not living up to their pre-tournament hype. Expect the Americans to save face and win on home ice...
The backlash against the Kamloops Blazers over their shutting out of Kamloops Daily News sports editor Greg Drinnan due to his less than positive portrayals of the team was nice to see. I don't care how mean he was, Drinnan doesn't deserve this ridiculous treatment. As a long time fan of the Blazers, it's embarrassing and sad to see just how far this once proud franchise has fallen. The ownership group of Tom Gaglardi, Jarome Iginla, Darryl Sydor, Mark Recchi and Shane Doan should be ashamed. So here's what people should do: hit them back. To the people of Kamloops, stop going to the games if you support Drinnan. And for the rest of us, boycott Sandman Hotels and the Shark Club in all it's locations. Is it going to be an effective message? Perhaps not, but if it makes even the slightest dent in the pocket book to the man responsible for further dragging the organization that was once the model all junior teams aspired to be, it will be well worth it...
WAACH 'Cast's Band Of The Day- Korpiklaani
Off to Finland this time, as we get ready to drink with the leaders of the Hummpa-metal scene. Mixing thrash with traditional Finnish folk music, Korpiklaani have become one of my favorite bands. The use of instruments that you wouldn't expect to hear from a metal band, as well as a good portion of the lyrics sung in Finnish rather than English make this band a unique treat for those looking for something a little different. One of my favorites from them, 'Tervaskanto' and their latest video 'Tequila' from their upcoming album 'Ukon Wacka' on Nuclear Blast Records