At this point, most everyone in the hockey world knows who The Green Men are. And for whatever reason, they seem enjoy taunting the Nashville Predators slightly more often than the rest of the league. I ran across this earlier tonight, courtesy of @22Sedin33's twitter feed; a screen shot taken during a game against the Canucks in December.
I can't decide if I like their jabs at the interesting color choice of Nashville's home jerseys or the look on Jerred Smithson's face better.
Wait...what am I saying?! I definitely love the look on Jerred's face more. I think we can call that "emotion" disdain.
Last night's game between the Carolina Hurricanes and the Nashville Predators was not locally televised so I tried to catch some of the "action" by scrolling through some pictures this morning. I ran across this gem, that probably mostly features Jordin Tootoo, but I was drawn to Colin Wilson far more.
Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images
Look at that vertical leap! I know moves like this can happen quite often during a game but usually, it's not captured in a picture. The athleticism of NHL players continues to amaze.
Bonus points if you can spot Kristin Cavallari and fiancee, Chicago Bears (and former Vanderbilt) quarterback, Jay Cutler, in the crowd. Unfortunately, neither look like they could care one bit about what's going on in front of them.
I often hear the phrase "hockey is for everyone". While that is most likely true, some times the sport is better left to the professionals and/or the kids taking part in the game. This video highlights Prince William's efforts at taking penalty shots during a street hockey game; part of his Canadian tour with new wife Catherine Middleton, in the summer of 2011. Not that I can guarantee I'd do any better when faced with the same challenge, I'd say it's probably best that Prince William stick to something more in line with whatever it is the royals do.
This year I spent Christmas with family in the southwestern Michigan/Chicago area. It was definitely ripe with merchandise for both the Chicago Blackhawks and the Detroit Red Wings. I found myself gravitating towards the Blackhawks gear (I can't lie, it was pretty nice, but I promise I didn't buy anything!). The Red Wings stuff...well, as usual, I could barely look at it. However, while strolling through a store looking for after-Christmas sales, I ran across something I couldn't quite believe. There, in a giant bin, was a rather large pile of Red Wing-clad purple octopus pillows.
After the initial WTF moment, I knew I needed to share this strange find with the world. Obviously, someone felt like there was a market for something like this. Though, judging by the amount of pillows I saw in the store, maybe even Red Wings fans think this idea is a little ridiculous.
Okay, so I'm a little late to the New Year's party; two days to be exact. However, in the spirit of the occasion, I've decided to revive my blog and start a new daily feature I'm calling "The NHL in 366". Inspired by those daily photography projects that so many people start at the beginning of each new year, I will try each day to feature a new photograph, video, or some other media form that I'm feeling from around the NHL or hockey world in general.
Today's picture comes from yesterday's Winter Classic. Courtesy of Buzzfeed's "16 Beautiful Photos From The NHL Winter Classic", this picture makes me feel like I'm in the stands with everyone else at Citizens Bank Park. The black and white exposure (created through an infrared camera) adds a sense of immediate nostalgia, which is what the Winter Classic is all about.
Photo via Getty Images
Add it to the bucket list: See the Winter Classic live. That would be perfection.
The riots that broke out in Vancouver last night, more than anything, left me feeling sorry for Vancouverites (Vancouverians?). Yes, Canadians love their hockey just as much as rednecks love their NASCAR*. And I am sure there were a few Canucks fans who felt as though the Game 7, 4-0 loss to the Boston Bruins in their arena was a sure sign of the end of the world. However, there is never a good reason to head up a riot like it’s the Apocalypse. We Americans already have a tainted view of Canada and the events from last night just further fueled that fire. What happened after the buzzer sounded in Rogers Arena definitely made it a whole lot easier for people to generalize Canadians in the “crazy” category. That’s not fair for the thousands of Vancouver residents who had nothing to do with the actions of the ignorant few. Over the next few weeks, if Vancouver is brought up in conversation, the natural reaction for most will be to talk about how everyone in the city goes crazy if the hockey team doesn’t win. It’s like hearing someone is from Nashville and automatically assuming we all walk around barefoot, chewing on a piece of straw, while wearing a cowboy hat and overalls (BTW, we only do this on Saturdays…).
Vancouver is a gorgeous city and its hockey-loving citizens have a lot to be proud of. Their fateful “team of destiny” might not have brought home the ultimate prize but they sure did take everyone on a heck of a ride. I hope that most can take the time to see what an extraordinary year this was for the Vancouver Canucks, whether or not the outcome was favorable. The team, its fans, the city and the country deserves at least that.
And really, it’s just a few short months before the roller coaster begins again.
Hit reset and start over.
*I am fully aware that I generalized rednecks and their love of NASCAR, which might somehow negate the entire sentiment of this post. Just try not to think about it too much, okay?
I brought you my take on the Predators Western Conference Quarterfinal series match up against the Ducks last night. Today, I defer to my West Coast friend and Ducks enthusiast, Finny, to bring you her take on the first round showdown between Anaheim and Nashville, before the puck drops tomorrow night at 9:30pm CST. Enjoy!
Before I start crooning about how the Ducks will take the Preds in a hard-fought 6-game series, I wanted to thank my friend Rachel for letting me guestblog today! Of course, our friendship has limitations and playoffs fall within that region of “Um, we’ll be friends again when this is over – after one of us finishes licking our wounds.”
I have no particular reasons for disliking Nashville. Well, outside of Jordin Tootoo, but you know. That’s kind of a long-time brewing and he doesn’t quite register on my list of reasons why Anaheim should win this series in six.
Reasons Why Anaheim Ought to Win This:
1. Firepower. Yeah, I’m gonna say it: the RPG line! Corey Perry has blazed a trail up to this year’s Rocket Richard trophy. Don’t expect it to weigh him down in the playoffs. Known for his tenacity, Perry will still be sniffing around the net waiting for a feed from linemate/”twin” Ryan Getzlaf. But Coach Randy Carlyle isn’t one to stick with a one-trick pony. He’s done it in the past, and there’s no doubt he’ll do it again – Carlyle will mix up the lines to get the match-ups he wants. Don’t expect the Big Line to stick so closely together when there’s guys like Teemu Selanne rounding out the top three scorers for Anaheim.
2. Experience. It might be a weak one to tote, but let’s face it, Anaheim trumps Nashville in playoff experience and series wins. In their 5 post-season appearances, Nashville has yet to win a series. Don’t put it past them yet, however, since Nashville may be long-past due advancing to the second round. Anaheim is running a hot rush to the playoffs, winning 15 of their last 20 games. Trajectory like that often feeds into the players’ mentality and fuels the desire to keep the W’s coming!
1.Pekka Rinne, netminder. The point is to get the puck behind the man, but in order to do that, not only do the Ducks need to blow past the Preds defense, they’re going to need to net a few behind Rinne. The Nashville netminder has a 2.12 GAA and a .930 SV% -- and more consistent play between the pipes than the rotating door that has seemingly been installed in the Anaheim net.
2.The Shut Down Boys. If Shea Weber and Ryan Suter manage to keep the Big Line off the scoreboard, then Anaheim might be in trouble if they can’t cultivate secondary and tertiary scoring.During the season, the Nashville defense managed to keep Getzlaf and [Bobby] Ryan off the scoreboard and conceded only two measly goals to Perry.That being said,Saku Koivuand Selanne combined for a majority of the goals scored against Nashville (7 of a total of 9!).If the second and third lines step up to contribute, the Ducks may be able to circumvent the Shut Down Boys.
Overall, this series will be marked by a battle of styles: offensive vs. defensive.
May the best style… er, team, win!