The Night After The Night Before
Though there's no way to better describe last night's game than Killion's effort last night, we might as well try. From my seat that was just about the most entertaining game of hockey I've watched all season. As The Fifth Feather pointed out, the pace of the game was beyond sanity, and I can only imagine the 19k that walked out of there must have felt like they were just on a coke binge (though the come down for the Hosers would be much worse). In reality, only hockey and soccer can supply us with international competition with a pool of teams that can win any given tournament. And only international play can provide this sort of drama and energy. I'm still terrified of what might happen through injury to our players, and stopping the season for two weeks still seems a poor choice (much like milk, especially when you can't do better than MSNBC), but there can be no arguments against the hockey itself.
-I find this US team incredibly easy to like, and that's even aside from Patrick Kane. I know Ryan Kesler would have his picture in the Second City Hockey Post Office these days, but if he were wearing #17 for the Hawks you'd see plenty of other 17's in the stands. Bobby Ryan has been a stud for two years, I've had a man-crush on Dustin Brown for a long while now, I don't think the Sharks will ever win anything until they make Joe Pavelski captain, and Zach Parise is one of the more exciting players in the league. More importantly, they appear to be having a blast playing together, which is a great change from the 2006 squad that could hardly be bothered and played like it. Ryan Miller gives hope to any skinny guy, and his mask is kick-ass too.
-We all may owe an apology to Chris Drury, and not just for questioning his inclusion in this squad. It wasn't his fault the Rangers paid him top-line scorer money, and no one can fault him for taking it (especially considering he grew up a Rangers fan). He's always been a 2nd-3rd line guy, even with those 30+ goal seasons in Buffalo (on those teams filled with skill a lot of guys could score some goals). He's been a monster this week so far.
-Secondly, small to medium sized ups to Jeremy Roenick for admitting he was wrong about Drury's selection. I'll punch myself in the neck if Mike Milbury ever does something like that.
-Joe Thornton completely biffing it in a big game? Who had that one in the pool?
-Drew Doughty = A THING
That's it for now, I'll be back tomorrow to preview the second round games, where this should start to get real fun.