40 Random Thoughts: Avalanche at Wild
Image courtesy of Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports1. Spontaneous Wild games are fun! Well, not that spontaneous, but 20 hours notice or so. Sometimes, you just have to say “F--- it, I’m going to a hockey game.”
2. Long story on getting the tickets, but they were from a friend through a previous employer. I get to the game, and who am I sitting next to? The only person to have ever fired me from a job in my life. A very part time, meaningless job in which I was handled very unprofessionally, but still. That’s a good way to kick off game night.
3. The Wild kicked off the game with a very…interesting remixed Christmas medley. It was very well done, but also probably not entirely safe for people epilepsy or small children.
4. I really have nothing against Skrillex/Dubstep/whatever that stuff is, but I totally get those who aren’t a fan. It’s probably an acquired taste, like absinthe or bath salts.
5. The Wild looked pretty solid to start off the game, which was nice, considering the sleepy starts they’ve had in some games this season/their existence. Helping that tremendously, was the fact that the Avalanche are not very good.
6. Turns out Patrick Roy wasn’t all bad, eh?
7. Just kidding, he totally was.
8. The Avs didn’t really test Dubnyk much, outside of a few close calls that helped him say he earned that 18 save shutout. Here’s a very PG tweet from an instance in the first period where Dumba snatched a puck that had dribbled behind Dubnyk.
9. After that, Charlie Coyle pots the first goal of the game! What fun. Here’s our friend Giles Ferrell’s reaction:
10. For those not in the know, the nickname of the ‘The Big Omelette’ for Charlie Coyle comes from a story when Giles was at Tom Reid’s Hockey City Pub a few seasons ago, and met a chef employed by the Wild, who only knew players/personalities by their breakfast of choice. Charlie Coyle, was adorably and awesomely ‘Big Omelette’. Fans of the Giles and The Goalie Podcast already know, and we’d much appreciate that nickname taking off. It’s just too much fun.
11. During intermission, a friend tagged in me in an Instagram post from an account claiming to be Helen Keller. It was just various black screens instead of pictures. God bless that brand of comedy.
12. Not long into the second, Eric Staal splits two defenders, which we’ve seen a few times, and got hauled down, which we’ve seen, and didn’t score, which we’re totally accustomed to at this point.
13. But oh snap, this time was different. Staal earned a penalty shot for his efforts, finally. The crowd roared when the referee gestured for it too, we all felt the same way.
14. He didn’t really try much of a move, went glove side and got stuffed. Poo.
15. So to recap, Staal split two defenders, got hauled down, drew a penalty shot, got another breakaway, and failed to score again. Sunrise, sunset.
16. Then Zucker scores! Or wait, was it Dumba? Oh, it was Koivu. That’s one of the many drawbacks to seeing a game live, there are several times where you legitimately have no idea what just happened, and in arena replays aren’t quite as prompt/detailed as on tv.
17. Zucker reaches out with his stick, goes barreling into the net, Dumba blows up like he scored, meanwhile, consummate captain/stereotypical scandanavian Koivu predictably stonefaces the entire sequence.
18. I’m part Scandanavian, so I can say that. There’s a clause for that, I’ve heard.
19. Then after the period, the assist gets changed to Granlund, so Zucker gets completely shut out of the deal. Well, at least he got to slide into the net. That’s fun sometimes.
20. Another game, another exploded Matt Dumba stick on a slapshot. I’m sure he’s the type that uses like a 125 flex or something absurd like that, but it too much to ask of $300 hockey sticks to not explode on a slapshot? These are shaft breaks too, not the blade of the stick whistling across the rink like those of us growing up in the 90’s were accustomed to.
21. I worked in a sporting good store in high school, and let me tell you, I was pro at putting in new blades into the graphite shafts popular at the time. Piss me off and I’d leave a little glue in your stick to give you that wonderful sliding rattle effect too.
22. Also, I was the best skate sharpener in the Northeast metro and I won’t hear anything to the contrary from anyone else, I don’t care what you think of the famed old guy at Strauss.
23. Old guy at Strauss was overrated, let’s be honest.
24. After that, a funny thing happened. Gabriel Landeskog took a run at someone, and got a roughing call. Inexplicably, the guy he ran (Zucker) got a call too. Not exactly a shining moment for the refs.
25. Landeskog wrote this summer in the Player’s Tribune about the dangers of playing hockey with relation to concussions. Plenty of people praised it, and I understand that, but I immediately scoffed, because I’ve seen Landeskog run people way too many times to buy his concern for other’s safety.
26. I mean, yeah, I bet he is concerned about his own head out there, but I’m not at all convinced that he’s concerned for anyone else, so his words ring incredibly hollow for me.
27. Luckily for us, the Avs managed to entertain us immediately afterwards with this little gem.
28. Obviously, you feel a little bad for both guys, but
29. Ok, yeah, no one feels bad for them. We all pointed and laughed.
30. After that, it was a whole lot of "Whoa! Close call! Damn, almost!" kinda stuff. Which is what we're used to as Wild fans, I suppose.
31. The nice things was, towards the end of the game, the Wild did an amazing thing, and possessed the puck through most of the final 3 minutes. The Avs couldn't even pull their goalie, and the Wild played keep away to wind down the game.
32. Is it just me, or have we never, ever seen that before from this team?
33. It really was a fun way to end the game. Not the usual pants-crapping affair we're used to, clinging to a small lead, hoping that our hearts aren't broken. It was fun, watching the Wild basically endlessly cycling the puck, probably pretending they were on the powerplay or something.
34. So 8 in a row, huh? That's fun. With two games back to back before the holiday, I'm not so sure we'll see ten, but that would be a lot of fun. Why, you ask?
35. Because the endless amount of Tye Dillinger gifs I could use, duh.
Basically, he's a wrestler whose gimmick revolves around calling himself "The Perfect Ten" It's fantastic.
36. See what I mean? Endless fun and laughs.
37. No? Just me and my friend Pete? Ok.That's fine.
38. Anyway, the Wild are on to the East Coast for two tough games. I'm not optimistic, but I think we should be very happy with a split.
39. However, it was nice to see the Wild clean up against a team that they should've cleaned up against. Holding the Avs to 18 shots, and only winning by two because of some unfortunate luck for Semyon Varlamov is a great sign. Maybe this team has turned a bit of a corner, and is earning victories again.
40. What's next month? January? Oh. Well, nevermind then.
- Monkeypaws likes this