Friday May 11 7:39 PM
Were the Buffalo Sabres really that bad on home ice last night? Were (are) the Ottawa Senators really that good? One of the reasons I picked Buffalo to win the series is because they have yet to perform they way they did during the regular season. Perhaps by the time it's over, we'll still be waiting.
Another reason I like the Sabres is Ryan Miller. I think he'll be better than Ray Emery. Emery is much improved from a year ago but I still can't root for a guy who idolizes Mike Tyson. A grown man who thinks so highly of Tyson that he'd put the fighter on his mask has issues.
Sabres in seven.
Something is definately wrong in San Jose. I say that not as someone who picked the Sharks to beat Detroit but someone who has seen a team quit on its coach. Ron Wilson literally has the NHL in his blood (father Larry and uncle Johnny both won Stanley Cups for Detroit) but his handling of Patrick Marleau and Joe Thornton tells me he's gone, or they are; and we know Thornton isn't going anywhere. I know the Sharks power play was pitiful in the playoffs but not starting Thornton to begin the third period while on the PP reminded me of Guy Carbonneau nailing Alex Kovalev to the bench in the dying minute of the regular season finale in Toronto. Pass the buck. Find the scapegoat. Call it whatever. It worked for Carbonneau. Most members of the local media took his cue and pounded Kovalev. It won't work for Wilson.
Anaheim vs Detroit feaures a first: All three nominees for the Norris Trophy in the same series.
It also features a 45 year old playing like a 25 year old. Two goaltenders who have already won a Cup(Hasek) and a Conn Smythe Trophy(Giguere); one of whom is 10-1 in 11 overtimes games (it's not Hasek).
The series also spotlights a team that fights the most vs a team that fights the least.
I think the injury to Mathieu Schneider is critical for the Wings. They're also missing Niklas Kromwell. I believe the well rested, disgustingly healthy Ducks will eventually wear down the Red Wings.
Anaheim in six
I'd like to see the Sabres win. Buffalo fans have waited 37 years. If not, I'd like to see Ottawa win. They've had to wait since 1992. Enough already. Fact is any of the four remaining teams would be a worthy Stanley Cup Champion. Hopefully the games will result in the kind of sustained action the "My New NHL" is all about. And at least silence the what-have-I-got-to-complain-about-next critics who want to see more goals.
Round Two Predictions: 3-1
Total Playoff Predictions: 11-1
I didn't like Ted Saskin from the moment I heard him on the air during the lockout at The Fan 590 in Toronto when he called in during a segment to belittle 70-something Stan Fischler. Saskin sounded like a smarmy, insecure little man. Good for Chris Chelios, Trent Klatt and Dwayne Roloson for sniffing out a rat.
The Calgary Flames looking to trade Matthew Lombardi? Bring him home:
Catching up on music: If you missed the Anjani show at Cabaret you missed a special treat. Leonard Cohen appeared on stage with her for three songs, including an encore. Magical.
Kings of Leon keep getting better. These sons (and one cousin) of a preacher play filthy guitar driven rock 'n roll with the best of them. "Black Thumbnail" is as good a rock song I've heard this year.
While I'm in a groove, here's more:
Arcade Fire: Neon Bible **** As good as advertised. Especially "Antichrist Televsion Blues"
Bright Eyes: Casadega *** Not the new Dylan. But better than the new Paul Simon
Solomon Burke: Nashville *** Soul great puts on a cowboy hat
JJ Cale & Eric Clapton: The Road To Escondido ***1/2 As familiar and smooth as your favorite single malt. And effective. Epitome of the term professional musicianship
Elvis Costello & Allen Toussaint: The River In Reverse **** Speaking of musicianship...
Jet: Shine On *** Not just rip 'n roll; melodies too
Norah Jones: Not Too Late ***1/2 Now she's writing too. I'm in love. Again
Jesse Malin: Glitter in the Gutter *** Paul Westerberg for the 21st century
Amos Lee: Supply and Demand *** James Taylor-with an edge-for the 21st century
Jerry Lee Lewis: Last Man Standing **** Rock 'n Roll party album of the year
Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard & Ray Price: Last of the Breed **** Classic country at it's finest
Aaron Neville: The Soul Classics **1/2 The big man never sounded sweeter
New York Dolls: One Day It Will Please Us To Remember Even This **** Comeback of the year
Graham Parker: Don't Tell Columbus *** Literate rock by born again American
Cat Power: The Greatest **** Yes, it is that good
Dan Reeder: Sweetheart *** John Prine discovery; modern Leon Redbone
Patti Smith: Twelve **1/2 Hit & miss covers
Todd Snider: The Devil You Know *** Perceptive, thoughtful, funny songwriter. One of my favorites
Mavis Staples: We'll Never Turn Back *** Mostly Civil Rights era Gospel classics; If you don't wake up sunday morning to The Velvet Underground, wake up to this
The Stooges: The Weirdness *** How about a Stooges/Dolls doubleheader?
Lucinda Williams: West *** The best female songwriter on the planet but something's missing on this one
Neil Young: Live at Massey Hall 1971 ****1/2 Long bootlegged masterpiece
Happy Birthday to Ryan Adams who was 34 today.
Favorite Ryan Adms songs:
1. New York, New York
2. Starting To Hurt
3. A Kiss Before I Go
4. Hotel Chelsea Nights
5. English Girls Approximately
6. Beautiful Sorta
7. To Be Young (is to be sad, is to be high)
8. Peaceful Valley
9. When Will You Come Back Home
10.Love Is Hell