Saturday, December 10, 2005


digital photo -- me in front of the TV
digital photo -- me in front of the TV

No, this isn't the game thread. It's just something to juice everybody up for tomorrow's game.

Enjoy your Saturday.

Everyone going to the Q, keep yourselves sharp. Don't let up. Surely you recall how close the game in San Francisco was?

Hoarse throats tomorrow. Hoarse throats.

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Friday, December 09, 2005


Canucks 3, Senators 2 (SO)
AP photo -- Richard Lam

[posted in full Sat ~9:51p]

By most accounts, it was a great game marred only by the referees trying to take its reins. The talent on the ice was plentiful and the goaltending was incredible. With all the penalties, the goaltending had to be incredible to keep the game down to a final score as indicated.

The Vancouver area had a long time to build this one up since the Canucks hadn't played since Sunday night. The game marked the 100th straight sellout at GM Place (counting playoffs), and this had been billed as a measuring stick game. It would be against a team of Ottawa Senators who weren't just good, they were 21-4 good. What would hold up? Would the balance swing in the favor of a 21-4 team or a team that was 12-1 on home ice at GM Place?

1st period
Markus Naslund drifted from the right-wing boards and moved next to the faceoff dot, where he wristed a bullet past Dominik Hasek stick side with a couple of skaters in front to help screen. Coming into the game, the Canucks had a record of 11-1 when scoring the first goal of the game.
»» 1, VANCOUVER, powerplay, Markus Naslund 16 (Todd Bertuzzi, Ed Jovanovski) 1:07
On a 2-on-1 shorthanded break with Bryan Smolinski on his left, former Canuck Peter Schaefer wristed the puck five-hole past Alex Auld from the back of the right circle.
»» 2, OTTAWA, shorthanded, Peter Schaefer 5 (unassisted) 3:14
In a four-on-four situation, Daniel Sedin got into the Ottawa zone on a breakaway and had to evade two of the Sens' defenders trying to hook him from behind. Hasek came way out of the net and halfway up the slot to try and kick the puck away, but he whiffed on the kick attempt. Henrik Sedin came to pick up the scraps with only defenseman Chris Phillips to beat in front of the net. Phillips is not Hasek.
»» 3, VANCOUVER, Henrik Sedin 8 (Daniel Sedin) 17:58
Ottawa was hit with three penalties in the final 2:24 of the period and over a span of 88 seconds. Naslund was hit with a tripping minor eight seconds before the 2-1 goal as well. Shots were 13-9 for Vancouver in the period. The Canucks were 1-for-5 on the power play, whereas Ottawa was 0-for-2.

2nd period
Though no goals were scored, possibly the biggest save of the game was recorded when Hasek threw up the pads on a Brendan Morrison shot. Nearly as absurd as the first period, Ottawa was hit with penalties at the 15:21, 17:21, and 19:54 marks. The period was scoreless, but Hasek had a lot to do with that. Vancouver outshot the Senators 15-6 in the period (28-15 overall) and was 0-for-4 on the power play (1-for-9). Ottawa was 0-for-3 on the power play (0-for-5).

3rd period
Vancouver hockey fans had their hockey fix during the lockout by way of the WHL's Vancouver Giants. Andrej Meszaros was a member of the Giants last year and also represented the Czechs at the World Junior Championships last winter. Coincidentally, the World Juniors this year will be held in Vancouver. Anyway, Meszaros fluttered a puck from the point that went off Bryan Allen (and possibly Mattias Ohlund before that) and past Auld to tie the game. It was the first NHL goal for Meszaros. There's never a good time for a fluky goal, and with a one-goal lead against Ottawa, it really wasn't good.
»» 4, OTTAWA, Andrej Meszaros 1 (unassisted) 5:01
The Canucks weren't able to get the lead back, and their best chances was on a two-man advantage with just over five minutes left when Naslund tried to jab in a rebound, but Hasek was on it. The Canucks failed to take advantage of a power play over the final 53 seconds of regulation. Vancouver outshot Ottawa 9-6 in the period (37-21 regulation) and was 0-for-4 on the power play (1-for-13 regulation). Ottawa was 0-for-2 on power play in the period (0-for-7).

Ottawa outshot Vancouver 2-1 in the overtime period and didn't capitalize on 17 seconds of a power play to end the overtime. Vancouver outshot the Senators 38-23 in the game. Ottawa finished 0-for-8 on the power play while Vancouver was 1-for-13.

Dany Heatley -- NO (missed net high)
Naslund -- NO (backhand five-hole stuffed by Hasek)
Daniel Alfredsson -- YES
Bertuzzi -- YES (backhand, Hasek stops but it slips through)
Jason Spezza -- NO (backhand fake to forehand, stopped)
Ryan Kesler -- NO (rolls off stick)
Mike Fisher -- NO (gloved by Auld)
»» D Sedin -- YES (hard forehand wrister)

Three stars -- (1) Morrison, (2) Ottawa's Andrej Meszaros, (3) Jovanovski
[Kevin Kinghorn's recap (top link in every one of these posts) eschewed the in-arena three stars, as did many after the game. He went with (1) D Sedin, (2) Auld, and (3) Detroit's Dominik Hasek. Much safer picks.]

skater, goals-assists-points
Naslund 1-0-1
H Sedin 1-0-1
Bertuzzi 0-1-1
Jovanvoski 0-1-1
D Sedin 0-1-1

Todd Bertuzzi was the first player to score against Dominik Hasek in a shootout this season.

In the faceoff circle, the Canucks were 32-for-68 (47%). Brendan Morrison was 13-for-28 in his 500th career NHL game, Trevor Linden was 5-for-8, Ryan Kesler was 4-for-8, Henrik Sedin was 7-for-16, and Todd Bertuzzi was 3-for-6.

Morrison led the Canucks in shots with seven. Sami Salo got off six shots. Bertuzzi dished out six hits. Bryan Allen blocked three shots. The only plus-playing Canuck on the night was Salo, who was plus-1. Minus-playing Canucks were Mattias Ohlund, Nolan Baumgartner, Allen, Richard Park, Kesler, Jarkko Ruutu, and Anson Carter. All other Canuck skaters were even.

The Canucks are now 18-9-2 (1-1 on shootouts, one overtime loss), good for 38 points and a lead in the Northwest Division due to their game in hand over the Calgary Flames, who also have 38 points. They also are now 13-1 on home ice.

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Wednesday, December 07, 2005


[posted Sat ~4:01a]

The Hawks were only one night departed from arriving at the Pepsi Center in Denver 90 minutes before tipoff, which may not be such a big deal if they hadn't come straight from the airport. That's what a snowstorm does. Nonetheless, the Hawks finished the Rocky Mountain doubleheader by traveling to Salt Lake City the next night for a match against the Utah Jazz. The Hawks were down only 49-48 at half before scoring only 35 points in the second half en route to a 95-83 loss.

Bremerton High 2004 graduate Marvin Williams scored three points on 1-for-6 shooting from the field (0-for-1 from downtown) and 1-for-2 shooting from the line. He also collected four rebounds and an assist, but turned the ball over three times and was whistled for four fouls in his 29 minutes of play off the bench.

SportsLine image

The Hawks return to Atlanta for a Saturday night game, but it's against the Spurs. Anything can happen though -- after all, one of the two Atlanta wins is a road win at Indiana.

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Now that the Seahawks have won the NFC West, that's one goal down, three more to go.

1) Earn homefield advantage throughout the playoffs
2) Win the NFC
3) Win the Super Bowl

Right now, the Seahawks sit at 10-2, sporting the best record in the NFC. Behind the Seahawks at 9-3 are the Chicago Bears and the Carolina Panthers. The Bears, however, hold the tiebreaker over the Panthers head-to-head (13-3 Bears win on Nov. 20).

So let's just say that the Seahawks and Bears are in the discussion for the #1 seed in the NFC come January.

Two Clubs
1. Head-to-head, if applicable.
2. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the conference.
3. Best won-lost-tied percentage in common games, minimum of four.
4. Strength of victory.
5. Strength of schedule.
6. Best combined ranking among conference teams in points scored and points allowed.
7. Best combined ranking among all teams in points scored and points allowed.
8. Best net points in conference games.
9. Best net points in all games.
10. Best net touchdowns in all games.
11. Coin toss.

The second item is the most important one, folks.

The Seahawks are 9-1 in the NFC this season, while the Bears are 8-1.


SEATTLE (10-2, 9-1 NFC)
Sunday vs San Francisco (2-10)
Dec. 18 at Tennessee (3-9)
Dec. 24 vs Indianapolis (12-0)
Jan. 1 at Green Bay (2-10)
(2 remaining games vs the NFC)

CHICAGO (9-3, 8-1 NFC)
Sunday at Pittsburgh (7-5)
Dec. 18 vs Atlanta (7-5)
Dec. 25 at Green Bay (2-10)
Jan. 1 at Minnesota (7-5)
(3 remaining games vs the NFC)

Seattle's common opponent record with Chicago: 2-1 (W Atlanta, at San Francisco; L at Washington)
Chicago's common opponent record with Seattle: 2-1 (W San Francisco, Green Bay; L at Washington)

Seattle has a better strength of victory (.400 to .398) than Chicago and has a better strength of schedule (.438 to .431)

The Seahawks have a 1-game lead over the Bears in the NFC standings. If the Bears lose to Pittsburgh on Sunday, which I think will happen, the Bears will fall to 9-4. Of course, I see the Seahawks beating the 49ers on Sunday, so that will put them at 11-2. Even though the Steelers are an AFC team, it is vital for the Bears to win at Heinz Field on Sunday.

For all intents and purposes, though, I hope the Seahawks win out to finish 14-2. Why can't they finish 14-2? There isn't a game on their remaining schedule that this team can't win. Yes, they can beat Indianapolis on Christmas Eve, regardless of who's playing that day for the Colts.

It's a great time to be a Seahawks fan, folks. At least these playoff scenarios don't involve the Seahawks just trying to earn a playoff berth. I'll take these scenarios anyday of the week.

Get loud, 12th Man. I want to hear you on Sunday when I'm eating a plate full of wings at Wings To Go here in lovely Jonesboro, Arkansas. It's more lovely considering that it's the home of the 2005 Sun Belt Champions.

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Tuesday, December 06, 2005


[posted late Fri pm]

A Rocky Mountain snowstorm was to blame for the Atlanta Hawks showing up 90 minutes before tipoff for a game against the Denver Nuggets. However, the Hawks were able to put up 116 points against a decent team, losing 125-116.

2004 Bremerton High graduate Marvin Williams shot 2-for-5 from the field and hit both shots from the line for 6 points in 22 minutes off the bench. He also grabbed four rebounds (three offensive), dished out two assists, and recorded a steal to offset a turnover. He was also whistled for five fouls.

SportsLine image

Even with the snowstorm and showing up 90 minutes before tipoff, the Hawks were to travel to Salt Lake City for a game the next night against the Jazz.

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Monday, December 05, 2005


Who knew that the Seahawks would have the better record than the Eagles at this point? The Seahawks are 9-2 while the Eagles are in the cellar of the NFC East at 5-6. Who knew?

Yup, this is an all-day thread. I think the fact that this is the Seahawks' only appearance on Monday Night Football warrants such a deal. Besides, they are the NFC West Champs! In early December.

It's all about securing homefield advantage from now until the end of the regular season. If the Seahawks get homefield advantage, look out. We all know how valuable the 12th Man is.

The New York Football Giants do.

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Sunday, December 04, 2005


Canucks 5, Bruins 2
Reuters photo -- Andy Clark

[initial partial post Mon ~12:12a]

1st period
»» 1, VANCOUVER, Trevor Linden 3 (Lee Goren, Bryan Allen) 4:06

»» 2, VANCOUVER, Daniel Sedin 7 (Henrik Sedin) 14:03

2nd period
»» 3, BOSTON, Brad Isbister 5 (Brian Leetch, Glen Murray) 8:07

»» 4, BOSTON, powerplay, Marco Sturm 8 (Brad Boyes, Leetch) 14:57

3rd period
»» 5, VANCOUVER, powerplay, Brendan Morrison 6 (Markus Naslund, Ed Jovanovski) 4:33

»» 6, VANCOUVER, Ryan Kesler 4 (Jozef Balej, Sami Salo) 5:05

»» 7, VANCOUVER, powerplay, D Sedin 8 (Nolan Baumgartner, H Sedin) 18:13

Three stars -- (1) Linden, (2) D Sedin, (3) Boston's Brian Leetch

skater, goals-assists-points
D Sedin 2-0-2
H Sedin 0-2-2
Kesler 1-0-1
Linden 1-0-1
Morrison 1-0-1
Allen 0-1-1
Balej 0-1-1
Baumgartner 0-1-1
Goren 0-1-1
Jovanovski 0-1-1
Naslund 0-1-1
Salo 0-1-1

The Canucks are now 17-9-2, good for 36 points and a one-point Northwest Division lead over the Calgary Flames, a four-point lead over the Edmonton Oilers, and a five-point lead over the Colorado Avalanche.

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[actual post Mon ~12:35a]

The Atlanta Hawks rolled into Phoenix and former Sun Joe Johnson got booed to high heaven.

The Hawks lost again, 112-94 in the desert, and Johnson sat the final 15 minutes of the game since it was pretty much going to be a loss (it was 89-51 after three quarters). Johnson sitting freed up more minutes for people like Marvin Williams, who statistically had his best game of the season. In 31 minutes off the bench, the 2004 Bremerton grad put up 17 points on 7-for-11 shooting from the floor, 2-for-3 shooting from the line, and he hit his only three-point attempt. He also grabbed 11 rebounds (5 offensive) and racked up three steals to offset four turnovers and three fouls.

Congrats to Marvin on his first career double-double.

These shot charts are getting a bit crazy. Marvin had 11 shots from the field, and lately I haven't been seeing amounts of x's and o's that match up with the boxscores, but I'm still pasting these things into the posts.

SportsLine image

The Hawks travel to Denver for a Tuesday game.

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With the Rams' loss to the Redskins earlier today, the Seahawks are your 2005 NFC West Champions.

Remember, this team wasn't expected to be division champs. The Arizona Cardinals were. You know, the team that was expected to bury their loser's image this season.

So much for that nonsense.

We'll have a game thread up for the Eagles game in a few hours.

Fire it up, Seahawks fans.

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Incredibly busy on my end, so that'll explain the lack of posts from me since last Sunday.

Anyway, I posted all the Canuck posts and Marvin Williams Watches left over since then.

The tweak in the look of the website is left over from Thanksgiving. Hope you like it.

In the meantime, gear up for the E-A-G-L-E-S Eagles and do play this if you haven't already. It's jolly good fun.

Christmastime cannot come soon enough. I just want my posting habits to return to normal, that's all.

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