Saturday, December 17, 2005
Oilers 5, Canucks 4 (OT)
[posted in full Thu ~8:48p]
This team can't beat teams within its own division, for whatever reason. I have no idea what it is. In this one, they blew a two-goal lead they'd built up over the first 40 minutes of play. This was the first Vancouver start for backup goalie Maxime Ouellet. Vancouver's home record fell to 13-1-1.
Matt Cooke waited on a wrist shot from the high slot and beat Mike Morrison stick side for an early Vancouver lead. Ryan Kesler netted his first assist of the season, putting an end to the local Vancouver riddle, "which will come first, Christmas or a Ryan Kesler assist?"
»» 1, VANCOUVER, Matt Cooke 5 (Richard Park, Ryan Kesler) 3:44
»» CANUCKS 1, OILERS 0
Steve McCarthy followed his own rebound and passed to Todd Bertuzzi behind the net. Bertuzzi powered out quickly and stuck a backhanded wraparound past Morrison. Steve McCarthy snapped a 17-game pointless streak thanks to his pass to Bertuzzi before the goal. Edmonton coach Craig MacTavish pulled Morrison in favor of Jussi Markkanen. He wouldn't regret it.
»» 2, VANCOUVER, Todd Bertuzzi 10 (Steve McCarthy, Brendan Morrison) 7:03
»» CANUCKS 2, OILERS 0
The action was going so fast that the Canuck radio broadcast didn't take a station break until 8:01 had ticked off of the game clock. Ales Hemsky found Ryan Smyth wide open to Ouellet's right side with that whole side of the net uncovered. Coverage was shoddy on the play.
»» 3, EDMONTON, powerplay, Ryan Smyth 14 (Ales Hemsky, Jarret Stoll) 12:13
»» CANUCKS 2, OILERS 1
Shots were nine apiece in the period. Edmonton was 1-for-2 on the power play, while Vancouver was 0-for-1.
Hemsky camped out before unleashing a laser wrist shot from left of the slot to beat Ouellet low on the glove side.
»» 4, EDMONTON, powerplay, Hemsky 7 (Chris Pronger, Stoll) 7:57
»» OILERS 2, CANUCKS 2
Markus Naslund rushing down the right side passed to Bertuzzi at the right dot, where he bore down on Markkanen and went top shelf above the left shoulder to give Vancouver the lead back.
»» 5, VANCOUVER, Bertuzzi 11 (Markus Naslund, Ed Jovanovski) 8:23
»» CANUCKS 3, OILERS 2
A rebound of a Mattias Ohlund left-side slapshot got loose in front of the net for a few seconds before Anson Carter stuck it through.
»» 6, VANCOUVER, Anson Carter 11 (Mattias Ohlund, Nolan Baumgartner) 9:59
»» CANUCKS 4, OILERS 2
Shots were 12-6 for Edmonton in the period (21-15 overall). Edmonton was 1-for-3 on the power play (1-for-5) while Vancouver was 0-for-2 (0-for-3).
Fernando Pisani threaded the needle with a cross-ice pass in the Vancouver zone that found Marty Reasoner on Ouellet's glove side again with half the net uncovered.
»» 7, EDMONTON, powerplay, Marty Reasoner 7 (Fernando Pisani, Marc-Andre Bergeron) 3:14
»» CANUCKS 4, OILERS 3
On a shorthanded rush off a blocked Naslund shot, Shawn Horcoff blasted a slapshot that beat Ouellet stick side.
»» 8, EDMONTON, shorthanded, Shawn Horcoff 5 (Ethan Moreau, Igor Ulanov) 12:33
»» OILERS 4, CANUCKS 4
Shots were 11-6 for Edmonton (32-21 overall), who was 1-for-5 on the power play (3-for-10). Vancouver was 0-for-3 (0-for-6).
Michael Peca and Hemsky got onto a 2-on-1 with just under a minute remaining. Peca chipped a backhander over Ouellet, and that was your game.
»» 9, EDMONTON, Michael Peca 3 (Hemsky) 4:08
»» OILERS 5, CANUCKS 4
Shots were 5-1 for Edmonton in overtime (37-22 total). No penalties were called in the overtime.
Three stars -- (1) Bertuzzi, (2) Edmonton's Jarret Stoll, (3) Edmonton's Ales Hemsky
H Sedin 0-1-1
Well, that was disturbing. The Canucks blew two-goal leads twice and were badly outshot in both the second and especially third periods, along with overtime. However, in the third period, the Canucks were stuck killing penalties from the 2:44 mark until the 9:36 mark, for which all but 26 seconds of the 6:52 was spent on the kill. The Reasoner goal didn't take Vancouver off the power play, but rather it made a two-man advantage a simple power play for Edmonton. As for the new backup goalie in town, I'm not sure one can make a realistic assessment off of him in just one game, and the defense was crap and everything, but overall, the results weren't good.
In the faceoff circle, Vancouver was 26-for-64 (41%). Brendan Morrison was 8-for-17, Trevor Linden was 3-for-12 (ouch), Ryan Kesler was 6-for-11, Henrik Sedin was 7-for-18, and Todd Bertuzzi was 2-for-5.
Bertuzzi led the team with four shots, and Daniel Sedin had three. Matt Cooke led the team with six hits, while Mattias Ohlund delivered five and also blocked three shots. Plus skaters (all plus-1) included Ohlund, Nolan Baumgartner, Bryan Allen, Morrison, Richard Park, Markus Naslund, Kesler, Cooke, Steve McCarthy, Bertuzzi, and Anson Carter. All other Canuck skaters were even.
The game pushed the Canucks to a 20-9-3 record (1-1 in shootouts, two overtime losses), good for 43 points and a slim one-point Northwest Division lead over the Calgary Flames. Edmonton inches one point closer with their win and are now three points back of the Canucks in third place.
Friday, December 16, 2005
Bremerton High 2004 graduate Marvin Williams scored nine points and grabbed six rebounds (one offensive) in 27 minutes of play off the bench. He shot 2-for-6 from the field (0-for-2 from downtown) and hit five of six from the line. He also recorded a steal to help offset a turnover and was whistled for three fouls.
The Hawks host the Denver Nuggets on Sunday.
Thursday, December 15, 2005
Canucks 5, Flyers 4
[posted in full Fri ~9:28p]
The Vancouver Canucks had won three straight coming into the game, all against their first three Eastern Conference opponents on the schedule. They had beaten the Boston Bruins and Ottawa Senators at home and were only the third team this season to come out of Madison Square Garden with a win over the Rangers. It was the second game for Alex Auld as the #1 starting goalie for Vancouver, and it was Matt Cooke's second game back from his jaw injury.
Alex Auld made a huge save from his back on Peter Forsberg in front of the net at the 9:15 mark. Michal Handzus shot from the right-wing boards, and Alex Auld stopped it, but Handzus followed up the shot and easily put it past Auld glove side.
»» 1, PHILADELPHIA, Michal Handzus 7 (Branko Radivojevic, Derian Hatcher) 10:28
»» FLYERS 1, CANUCKS 0
Bryan Allen shot long from the left side, and it hit someone out in front and came out to the high slot, where Trevor Linden pushed it back to Allen, who had moved to the right side. Allen made a backhand pass back to Linden at the left faceoff dot, where the latter wristed a shot through traffic and past Robert Esche.
»» 2, VANCOUVER, Trevor Linden 4 (Bryan Allen, Richard Park) 13:40
»» FLYERS 1, CANUCKS 1
With 3:42 left in the period, Mike Richards broke in on Auld, but the goalie gave him nothing to work with. On the play, Wade Brookbank ended up smashing Richards into the boards, but paid a price for it, ramming himself into the boards as well. Neither player returneed to the game. The Canucks were outshot 12-7 in the period. No penalties were called on the Flyers, who were 0-for-2 on the power play.
The Flyers glided across center as Handzus made a cross-ice pass that Kim Johnsson controlled off his skate. Johnsson fired a quick wrister past Auld top corner glove side.
»» 3, PHILADELPHIA, Kim Johnsson 3 (Handzus) 5:52
»» FLYERS 2, CANUCKS 1
Noloan Baumgartner had a shot from the blue line deflect and get through on Esche five-hole to tie the game.
»» 4, VANCOUVER, powerplay, Nolan Baumgartner 2 (Anson Carter, Henrik Sedin) 14:35
»» FLYERS 2, CANUCKS 2
Mike Knuble and Peter Forsberg came across the right wing, and Knuble shot from the right-wing boards. It was a save you normally expect Auld to make, but somehow it got through him. Soft goal.
»» 5, PHILADELPHIA, Mike Knuble 14 (Sami Kapanen, Mike Rathje) 16:23
»» FLYERS 3, CANUCKS 2
Vancouver intercepted a clearing pass with about five seconds left, and Daniel Sedin fired a shot from just inside the blue line that got past Esche. It got through cleanly, but was a couple tenths of a second too late. The Canucks were outshot 11-10 in the period (23-17 overall), but were 1-for-3 on the power play in the period and had zero penalties called on them.
Markus Naslund along the end boards centered the puck and had it go in off of somebody in front. I had a reel that had a replay on it, and I've looked at it a billion times and couldn't tell who the puck bounced off of before going into the net.
»» 6, VANCOUVER, powerplay, Markus Naslund 17 (Todd Bertuzzi, Brendan Morrison) 3:29
»» FLYERS 3, CANUCKS 3
Daniel Sedin flung a puck on the net from the high slot, which was stopped, but Anson Carter was right there waiting for the rebound, and he easily put it past a sprawling Esche, who was yanked for Antero Niittymaki.
»» 7, VANCOUVER, Carter 9 (Daniel Sedin, H Sedin) 4:06
»» CANUCKS 4, FLYERS 3
Daniel Sedin and Anson Carter broke for a 2-on-1. Daniel made the perfect pass to the tape of Carter on the left side, who beat Niittymaki.
»» 8, VANCOUVER, Carter 10 (D Sedin, H Sedin) 9:23
»» CANUCKS 5, FLYERS 3
Just as the Flyers had pulled Niittymaki for the extra attacker, Rathje put the puck on the net, which was stopped, but Kapanen scooped up the rebound and put it through.
»» 9, PHILADELPHIA, powerplay, Kapanen 3 (RJ Umberger, Rathje) 18:34
»» CANUCKS 5, FLYERS 4
Auld atoned a bit for the previous soft goal(s) with a few huge stops in the last minute of play, not to mention stopping all but one of the many shots he faced in the period. The Canucks were badly outshot 20-9 in the period (43-26 total). They cashed in on their only power play of the period (2-for-4 overall), while Philadelphia was 1-for-3 (1-for-5). Auld stopped 39 shots.
Three stars -- (1) Carter, (2) D Sedin, (3) Philadelphia's Sami Kapanen
H Sedin 0-3-3
D Sedin 0-2-2
The win was Vancouver's first this season when they trailed after two periods of play. They are now 1-8-1 in that situation. It was coach Marc Crawford's 389th career win as a coach.
Vancouver was 37-for-64 (58%) in the faceoff circle. Brendan Morrison was 8-for-16, Trevor Linden was 9-for-18, Ryan Kesler was a stellar 7-for-8, Henrik Sedin was 11-for-19, and Todd Bertuzzi was 2-for-3.
Markus Naslund and Anson Carter led the team with four shots apiece. Matt Cooke dished out four hits. Sami Salo blocked six shots. The second line was great, as Carter, Henrik Sedin, and Daniel Sedin were all plus-2. Plus-1 Canucks were Salo and Steve McCarthy. Minus skaters (minus-1) were Mattias Ohlund, Morrison, Naslund, Kesler, Matt Cooke, and Ed Jovanovski. The lone minus-2 Canuck skater was Bertuzzi. All other Canuck skaters were even.
The win pushed the Canucks to a 20-9-2 record (1-1 in shootouts, one overtime loss), good for 42 points and a two-point Northwest Division lead over second-place Calgary. They led Edmonton by four points and Colorado by seven points. The Canucks host the Oilers on Saturday night to kick off a six-game homestand that includes two home games against Calgary that roughly sandwich Christmas.
If you're like me, you've read Sports Illustrated over the years and have always wondered what it would be like to have a Seahawks player on the cover of SI.
Well, wonder no more.
Shaun Alexander is the first Seahawks player to be featured prominently on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Just two weeks ago, Bobby Engram was on the cover of SI, but was placed with a group of wide receivers from the 1996 NFL Draft class.
The Seahawks have been featured on the cover of SI before. Of course, they were only featured when Marcus Allen and John Elway were on the cover. I know some of you remember last year's NFL preview issue, where the Seahawks were listed as one of the four teams to fear. Or how about last October, when the Patriots knocked off the Seahawks to enhance their winning streak to 20 games?
As you can see, the Seahawks don't have a glorious history with Sports Illustrated. With success, however, things are about to change. It's important to remember that we shouldn't be wishing for the Seahawks to not be on the cover of SI. Don't worry about the SI jinx. It doesn't always come to fruition. Surely the SI jinx hasn't hurt the Patriots the last couple of seasons.
I do know who Shaun Alexander is, though.
He's the best running back in football. Better than LaDainian Tomlinson. Better than Tiki Barber. Better than Edgerrin James. Alexander is playing in Egypt, so the rest of the country doesn't recognize how good he really is, hence the headline "DO YOU KNOW HIS NAME?"
Don't blame SI writer Nunyo Demasio for the headline. Writers don't make the headlines, folks. Trust me on this one, I should know. I'm a writer myself. Yes, this is the same Nunyo Demasio who wrote for the Seattle Times. I haven't had a chance to read this issue yet, because I'm back in southeast Arkansas for the next couple of weeks. So, for the next couple of weeks, there will be a bundle of Sports Illustrateds sitting in my mailbox up at Arkansas State University. Go figure, the week I leave ASU for the break, a Seahawk is on the cover.
America will find out who Shaun Alexander is in the next two months.
Fortunately, we already know who he is.
The best running back in football.
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Bremerton High 2004 graduate and North Carolina alum Marvin Williams scored three points on 1-for-2 shooting (hit a three-pointer) in 17 minutes off the bench. He also grabbed three rebounds and recorded a steal to offset two turnovers and two fouls.
Atlanta was to host the New York Knickerbockers on Friday night.
...it came from this post by Jeremy back on June the 13th of 2004.
Also feel free to look back on the week that was in Sports and B's history. It's mostly bad, since the Mariners were 2.5 months into their crappiest post-1995 season. It also doesn't have a lot of me after the 13th since I was busy driving seven hours to Mitchell, Oregon, to partake in six weeks of geologic hell. Seismologic or geophysical hell I would have been fine with, but geologic hell wasn't so kind to me. Crappy exposures suck. So does putting your field camp on a flood plain, but did it surprise me that it was some Beavers from Corvallis that came up with the idea to put a cinderblock shack next to a creek off the side of US-26, tell the students to pitch the tents out back in Mosquitoville, and call it a geology camp? Not really.
But enough about that. Here's how the final math on how the issue at hand really works...
...and that's the way the cookie crumbles. I don't think I'll have lived through these type of leftfield shenanigans (well, when he's not DHing anyway) since...Al Martin? You know, he played college football against Leroy Hoard. ...Or did he? Actual minutes of sports radio airtime were spent discussing that back when Martin was in Seattle.
Hey, I've gotten that feeling I haven't gotten in forever -- the one where I have to stop myself from making too long of a post. It's a good feeling, but I probably should be studying for an upcoming test or two.
[none of the good citizens of Everett were harmed in the making of this post. At least I hope nobody was.]
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Bremerton High 2004 graduate Marvin Williams scored 4 points in 21 minutes off the bench on 2-for-4 shooting from the floor. He also grabbed 3 rebounds, dished out an assist, and recorded two steals to offset a turnover and four fouls.
The Hawks were to travel to face Philadelphia the next night (Wednesday).
Canucks 3, Rangers 2
[posted in full Sat ~1:11a]
Matt Cooke returned to the ice for the Canucks, coming back from a broken jaw after missing 17 games. Dan Cloutier, however, is out for the remainder of the season and will undergo surgery for ACL damage. In the game itself, Todd Bertuzzi rushed to the defense of Markus Naslund taking a hit by whaling on Ryan Hogwell, then getting sent to the box for two (instigator), five (fighting), and ten (misconduct), taking a key offensive player for the Canucks off the ice for a big chunk of the game. Add to this that Dominic Moore, brother of Steve Moore, was active and playing for the Rangers. There was a collision between Moore and Bertuzzi, in fact.
Nonetheless, it's still a great road win for Vancouver. It's their third straight, and all against Eastern Conference opponents.
As for Dan Cloutier, he'll have to wait until next year, or possibly this year's playoffs to prove himself once and for all to the Vancouver faithful.
In odd news, they had the radio crew sitting five rows up from the ice for the game.
No goals, but lots of end-to-end action and solid goaltending. With the Rangers on a power play late (4:11 left), Alex Auld made a nice save on a deflected shot off the stick of Michael Rozsival. Vancouver outshot the Rangers 17-12 in the period and they were 0-for-3 on the power play while New York was 0-for-2.
Ed Jovanovski was able to take full advantage of the abolition of the two-line pass by finding Todd Bertuzzi past the blue line in the Ranger zone. Bertuzzi, who had just come off of denying in the media that he wanted to be traded, beat Henrik Lundqvist glove side on a very quick play.
»» 1, VANCOUVER, Todd Bertuzzi 9 (Ed Jovanovski, Mattias Ohlund) 1:01
»» CANUCKS 1, RANGERS 0
Tom Poti's shot from behind the right circle was stopped by Auld, but Petr Prucha was right there for the rebound, stuffing it top corner, glove side. Sadly, there was only one second left in Sami Salo's tripping penalty.
»» 2, NEW YORK, powerplay, Petr Prucha 14 (Tom Poti, Martin Straka) 8:28
»» RANGERS 1, CANUCKS 1
With about 3:50 left in the period, the Canucks were moving to the New York zone from center, and Bertuzzi had the puck. Ryan Hollweg was draped onto him, and Bertuzzi just sort of shoved him onto the ice with one arm. Right after that, Hollweg made a run at Naslund. Bryan Allen and Bertuzzi came in to answer the bell, but it was Bertuzzi who came in and rained right hands on Hollweg. Though the response of team toughness was good to see, it was Todd Bertuzzi doing this, which may have been part of the reason that he got two for instigating, five for fighting, and ten for misconduct, putting him out of the game until the last 13 minutes or so of the game. Shots were eight apiece in the period (Canucks 25-20 overall). Vancouver was 0-for-2 on the power play in the period (0-for-5 overall) while the Rangers were 1-for-2 (1-for-4).
After taking a pass from his brother, Daniel Sedin circled from behind the net to the right faceoff dot before uncorking a wrister that got past Lundqvist top corner, short side.
»» 3, VANCOUVER, Daniel Sedin 9 (Henrik Sedin, Ohlund) 6:35
»» CANUCKS 2, RANGERS 1
Prucha blasted a big slapshot from just past the right hash to beat Auld cleanly on the far side.
»» 4, NEW YORK, Prucha 15 (Michael Nylander, Jason Ward) 7:41
»» RANGERS 2, CANUCKS 2
Ryan Kesler and Richard Park rushed down the left side of the ice, and Park got a shot onto Lundqvist, who stopped it. As Michael Nylander tried to clear the rebound away, Matt Cooke took the puck off his stick and put it past Lundqvist for what ended up being the winner. This was against the run of play since the Rangers had been piling on their scoring chances but never getting through on Auld.
»» 5, VANCOUVER, Matt Cooke 4 (unassisted) 15:29
»» CANUCKS 3, RANGERS 2
Auld made a final save off Nylander in the final five seconds. The Rangers piled on with their shots, outshooting the Canucks 16-6 in the period (36-31 overall). The Rangers had no penalties called on them in the period. Vancouver finished 0-for-5 on the power play. The Rangers were 0-for-1 in the final period on the power play, ending 1-for-5.
Three stars -- (1) New York's Petr Prucha, (2) Ohlund, (3) Auld
[the TV chose D Sedin, Prucha, Cooke]
D Sedin 1-0-1
H Sedin 0-1-1
Matt Cooke made his presence known right away with a hit in the first minute of the game, and he showed up in the right place at the right time, as he has a knack of doing, and scored the winner. His speed brings the total speed back to the Park/Kesler/Cooke line, and the Canucks need to get their third and fourth lines onto the scoreboard to take a little of the burden off the top lines. They can't always depend on scoring from the defensemen either, though it's nice to have.
The Canucks were 32-for-61 (52%) in the faceoff circle. Brendan Morrison was 7-for-17, Trevor Linden was 7-for-12, Ryan Kesler was 7-for-13, and Henrik Sedin was 9-for-15.
Daniel Sedin, Matt Cooke, and Todd Bertuzzi led the team with four shots apiece. Cooke delivered four hits. Ed Jovanovski blocked three shots. Mattias Ohlund was an incredible plus-3. Plus-1 Canucks included Nolan Baumgartner, Sami Salo, Richard Park, Kesler, Cooke, Henrik Sedin, Jarkko Ruutu, Bertuzzi, and Anson Carter. Minus-1 skaters were Steve McCarthy and Lee Goren. All other Canuck skaters were even.
The Canucks are now 19-9-2 (1-1 in shootouts, one overtime loss), good for 40 points in the standings, moving them into a first-place tie with Calgary for the Northwest Division lead with a game in hand. They are now 6-8-2 on the road to go with their sparkling 13-1 home record.
Sunday, December 11, 2005
You know, if you used flawed logic, you could say that since the Seahawks beat the 49ers by 38 points and beat the Eagles by 42 points, that the 49ers are better than the Eagles. Yes, such a thought is hilarious.
But when you have wins like these, you just hope that everyone stays healthy and maybe you get some reps in for your younger guys. For the second straight week, there was some extended time for the likes of Seneca Wallace, Leonard Weaver, and Mo Morris, as well as some snaps for Peter Warrick.
With the health though, it was good that Matt Hasselbeck didn't get too shaken up when he got plowed into for the roughing-the-passer penalty, and it was also good that Mack Strong was able to walk off the field under his own power after he took a pretty good lick.
Seriously, it's been a long time since I was able to sit through two games like this with any of my teams, let alone the Seahawks. By this I mean that, since I listen to the games over here, my attention wavers a bit midway through the third quarter. With the way this week's and last Monday's game went, surely you can sympathize.
Yes, this team that 49er coach Mike Nolan said is "above average" is now 11-2 after beating the tar out of his team today. The Seahawks have swept division play for the season and are 7-0 at home. There's one home game left in the season, and it's in two weeks against those Colts. To any fans going to that game, I want it to be so loud in there that I can't hear the announcers on television.
In other news, Matt Hasselbeck is solid, Shaun Alexander is awesome, Josh Brown is nuts, Joe Jurevicius rules, Bobby Engram is dependable, Walter Jones is a rock, Lofa Tatupu is everywhere, and I may refer to a certain former Colorado receiver for the rest of the year as Big Play DJ Hackett.
Folks, this team has more wins than the team from two years ago that should have won the playoff game in Green Bay except Randall Godfrey couldn't wrap up Ahman Green in the backfield on 4th-and-goal. Anyway, it's a trip to Nashville next Sunday to face a team with Steve McNair and PacMan Jones, whose name can't leave me with a straight face anymore thanks to Tom Jackson's sound effects.
San Francisco 49ERS at Seattle SEAHAWKS, 1:05p
Let's keep the train rolling.
Let's keep the Q deafening.
And let's please have a Seahawk win that is a lot less closer than the game in San Francisco last time.
2004 Bremerton High graduate Marvin Williams got 17 minutes of play off the bench, scoring four points on 2-for-5 shooting from the field (one three-point attempt). He also grabbed seven rebounds and recorded an assist. He also turned the ball over once and was whistled for two fouls.
The Hawks travel to Cleveland on Tuesday.