Day two of the National Hockey League’s post-season tournament is in the books and we it was another great one.
The biggest story of the evening was the Montreal Canadiens upset of the Washington Capitals and even more surprising than the upset was the fact that the Habs held Alex Ovechkin without a shot on goal in the game. The great Hal Gill was largely responsible for that feat and finished the evening with 9 blocked shots… (Almost one full Rink-o point If you are calculating at home).
We saw Tukka Rask come dangerously close to winning the first playoff start of his career, but in the end the Sabres bested the B’s 2-1.
Lastly, the Vancouver Canucks led by your Art Ross winner, Henrik Sedin, needed overtime to knock off the upstart Los Angeles Kings. The Kings got a great performance out of their goaltender Jonathan Quick, but it wasn’t enough to stop the Swedish Olympic Team Canucks from getting the winner in overtime.
Speaking of overtime, you love it if you are in the Rinkotology pool, because most likely there is a 6 point goal on the table…unless it is scored by a guy who would only be on his mother’s Rink-o team…but that is for later in the blog…
With that all out of the way, let’s get to the selections for Tax Day 2010.
Remember the All-Stars will be comprised of three forwards, two defensemen and one goaltender. We will also be selecting three unsung heroes and three boobs…
The All Stars for 04/15/2010
F- Mikael Samuelsson
Samuelsson, who was once traded by the Penguins for the right to select Marc Andre Fleury first overall back in 2003, has turned into a very productive player over the years. He spent several seasons as a contributing member of the Detroit Red Wings before becoming a cap casualty. He hooked on with the Vancouver Canucks and immediately found a spot alongside the Sedin twins and they have been making some sweet Swedish music ever since! Samuelsson was the performer of the night by posting an impressive 11.6 Rink-o-tology points! The Swede notched 2 goals, (1PP), (1 OTGW), 7 shots on goal, 3 hits, and 1 blocked shot.
F – Tomas Plekanec
Plekanec is in a contract year. He is also in a war of words with the Washington Capitals…specifically goaltender Jose Threeorfour Theodore. You might think that insulting the reigning President Trophy winners might not be the best thing to do before meeting them in a 1-8 match-up in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, well Plekanec wasn’t skeeerd and he backed up his words with a great night that included the overtime game winner. His final line: 1G, (1OTGW), +1, 5 shots on goal, 1 hit for a cool 7.1 Rink-o points.
F – Henrik Sedin
Sedin picked up where he left off in the regular season and was all over the place last night. The Art Ross Trophy winner created multiple scoring chances for his teammates and could have had more than the two assists he got, if not for the play of Jonathan Quick. Sedin single-handedly made the overtime play that set up Mikael Samuelsson’s game winning goal and finished the night with: 2 assists, (1OTA),+2, 4 SOG for a total of 6.4 Rink-o points.
D – Craig Rivet
The Sabres Rivet is not known for his offense. In fact, his goal last night was only the fourth playoff tally of his fifteen year NHL career. But getting a goal from a guy like Rivet is what it takes to get it done in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. He finished the evening with 1 goal, (1GWG), 1 shot on goal, 2 hits, and 2 blocked shots for 6 rink-o points.
D – Joe Corvo
Though you can usually hear the crowd shouting “OH, CORVO!” after some defensive gaffe, you can also hear them cheering him when he produces as he did last night. You see, Corvo isn’t the best defenseman in the league, but he has a knack for the offense, which is what made him attractive in Washington… Last night Corvo picked up 1 goal, 1 shot on goal, and 1 blocked shot, which gave him 3.2 Rink-o points on the night!
G – Jaroslav Halak
There were several tenders under consideration for this honor today, but in the end I had to give a Jacques Martin-esque nod to Jaroslav Halak. Halak didn’t single-handedly win the game for his team last night, but he contributed greatly to their success. He finished the evening with 39 saves, 6 OT saves, 2 goals against, and most importantly the win! His Rink-o total came in at 8.9.
Unsung Heroes – these guys wouldn’t be on any team but their mother’s, but they are making mom happy!
F – Fredrik Modin
Personally, I often forget that Freddy Modin is even still an active player. That pretty much comes from the fact that he is almost always injured and when he isn’t, he is doing nothing for his team. It pains me to say that, but he can’t hide the fact that health and production waved bye, bye long ago… until last night that is! I could almost hear “The Boss” singing Glory Days, as Modin scored a pretty power play goal the reminded me of his personal glory days with the Maple Leafs! (Have the Leafs or Modin had any recent glory days?) Modin finished with 1 goal, (1PPG), 3 shots on goal and a blocked shot which gave him 4.4 Rink-o points on the night!
D – Craig Rivet
I think that I said it above, but the mere fact that he has four career playoff goals in a fifteen year NHL career pretty much sums up why he is on this list. Rivet’s goal, not unlike Craig Adams’ the other night, was cause for many onlookers to check the horizon for the Horsemen of the Apocalypse, as it almost has to be one of the signs of Armageddon! It all forced John Cusak to begin readying his family for an escape from the Mayan prophesies… only to realize it was just the Rivet goal… Rivet finished the evening with 1 goal, (1GWG), 1 shot on goal, 2 hits, and 2 blocked shots for 6 rink-o points.
D – Jaroslav Spacek
I remember joining in with the rest of the league in mocking the fact that the Canadiens signed Spacek to fortify their blue-line. I just didn’t see it being a great fit…others didn’t either, but hey… What do we know? Apparently Bob Gainey did know a little sump’in, sump’in, as Spacek had a pretty decent night in his first playoff game with the Canadiens. Jaro notched 1 assist, (1 OTA), +1, 1 shot on goal, and 3 blocked shots for 3.9 Rink-o points.
The Three Boobs – these guys are probably key contributors to your Rink-O teams, maybe even captains, and they pulled an “el foldo.”
F – Alex Ovechkin
Ovechkin, who hasn’t looked like himself since the Olympic break, came out and laid a goose egg for his owners last night. Sure, he was on the ice… and skating around… and attempting to shoot, but there is no record of it. Hal Gill and company saw to the fact that he could have been just as productive had he not suited up. Does that mean that he is going to continue hurting your Rink-o entry? Probably not, but it does mean that he gets the honor of being one of today’s three boobs! Forget the line; Ovechkin’s Rink-o total was a hearty .3. An even heartier .9 if he is your captain!
F – Ryan Smyth
When Ryan Smyth was traded to the Los Angeles Kings this summer, everyone thought it would be a great feel good story of “old guy” helping “young kids” get to the next level. Expectations weren’t all that high… that is until he and Anze Kopitar began looking like “The Three Amigos!” Yep…they were producing enough as a duo that they qualify for “TTA” badge on 4square. The bottom fell out a bit when Smyth was injured earlier in the year, but when it was apparent that he would be healthy heading into the playoffs, some might have selected the elder statesman for their squads… right now those folks are coming for you, Smyth… all compliments of your -.1. Really? A negative total… hard to do brother…
F – Milan Lucic
That’s right… Milan Lucic, who is one of the most overrated players in the league if you ask me, is today’s third boob! Yes he has great size, yes he will fight until the cows come home, and yes he does have some skill, however, I really doubt that he is going to be the next Cam Neely as some have predicted. He is to injury prone, doesn’t finish enough and has not looked like the guy who had such an impressive rookie year a few seasons back. With that indictment out of the way, I present the numbers that earned him the dubious distinction of being one of the boobs… ZERO Rink-o points. At least he didn’t go negative…