Saturday’s Alright For Fighting

According to Erin Valois of the National Post, Dany Heatley’s McDonald’s trading cards feature Dany not in a Sharks uniform, but a Senators one. By buggering up Heatley’s photos, it’s a nice homage to ruin his trade card value man when his trade value was reduced to nothing this past summer. I can only imagine the disappointment of some fat, disillusioned San Jose fan who spends his allowance buying 15 Big Macs a week only to find out that his favorite player isn’t featured in a Sharks jersey.

“Chris Neil Isn’t the Cleanest Player.”

“He’s not the cleanest player,” said Downie (who admitted he didn’t see the hit), “and he’s always preaching about dirtiness every time we play them, calling players gutless. Then he does something like that. He’s got to look in the mirror.”

“I’m not even going to take that on,” said Neil. “Every time we drop the gloves, he says ‘I don’t want to fight.’ At least he showed up (Thursday night).”

Of the hit, Neil said: “I was coming in to take the boards away and had some good jump. He bobbled the puck at the last second and I don’t think he saw me coming at all. It was a shoulder right in his chest. He’s eight feet tall, so it’s not like you could hit him in the head.” ~ Chris Stevenson, The Ottawa Sun

Good on Chris Neil for not taking his miscommunication with Steve Downie to the next level. This is reason #201 why I could never be a professional hockey player. Emotions would get the better of me. If I were Neil and had to respond to that question, I would have been too tempted to respond with the use of flash cards, or sign language. (For the record, Downie’s partially deaf in his right ear.)

Winchester In, Shannon and Donovan Out

It will be interesting to see how Winchester is utilized by Clouston tonight. There’s no question that Ottawa needs to be more successful on faceoffs and the return of Winchester and Spezza should help. With Shannon and Donovan back out of the lineup, it may be time to put Jonathan Cheechoo on healthy scratch notice.

Conveniently, I was listen to Over the Edge yesterday for the first time in weeks and Glenn Kulka was mentioning how when Cheechoo was in his prime, he was doing more than just scoring, he had a good work ethic and prided himself on being a bit of a physical presence. It’s a fair point, however, it’s worth considering that Cheechoo’s injuries have hampered his skating ability to the point wherein he makes Shaun Van Allen look like Scott Niedermayer.

It’s too bad, Cheechoo is a person and story that I want to root for. There’s no question he could be an effective player but his skating ability is so debilitating that he can no longer keep up with the play or be effective in his puck pursuit.

Game Prediction

I was out and away from the computer yesterday and was unable to get my game prediction in to James Gordon of the Ottawa Citizen in time for today’s prediction panel. Regardless, here’s what I’m feeling…

3-2 Ottawa

When’s the last time the Senators played a team that wasn’t from the Southeast Division? Between days off and numerous games against the Tampa Lightning, the thought of playing a new opponent is refreshing. (Even if it is the Devils.) Speaking of the Devils, they played and beat the Isles last night 2-1. Even though Brodeur will likely play, the Devils aren’t a high scoring team and I like how the Senators are anxious to play more and get on a bit of a roll. Brodeur keeps it close but Ottawa should win this one.


Bruce Garrioch Slings Mud At Someone


Volchenkov’s agent says reports of contract talks are “a total frabication.” ~ SunGarrioch


You mean these reports?