Somebody Approved This: EHC Wolfsburg Grizzly Adams

Jersey: The 2012 EHC Wolfsburg Grizzly Adams Hallowe’en jersey.

Years worn: 2012, one game only.

Reaction: “Ha! Look, the bear’s brains are showing!”

Most famous players to wear it: Niko Dimitrakos had a good run in the NHL. Kai Hospelt is the lone Wolfsburg player to have played in the Vancouver Olympics.

Why it’s great: Wearers of European hockey jerseys tend to resemble NASCAR vehicles more than hockey players. On this jersey, however, the advertising is pleasingly subdued. The jersey also has a huge zombie bear with a scythe. And more zombies in the background. And a font that drips blood! If you love Hallowe’en, it’s impossible to dislike this jersey.

Why it’s garbage: Less is supposed to be more, when it comes to design. The crew throwing this thing together leaped on the space freed up by the reduced advertising like an American on the local 7-11’s last remaining Twinkie and used it to cram in every piece of clichéd Hallowe’en imagery they could think of. “Hey Helmut, you forgot about the witch on the broomstick flying across the moon!” “Ah scheisse, sorry Jürgen! The right shoulder’s free, see if you can squeeze it in there!”

Haiku to describe Chris’s feelings whenever he sees this jersey:
Zombies suck at poetry.

Other jerseys we can’t believe somebody approved:
New York Islanders third jersey (rumoured), 2012
Seattle Sounders third jersey, 2012
Vancouver Canucks alternate jersey, 1995-1997




Payton Lee shines in back-to-back losses

Vancouver has struggled this season, but 16-year-old Payton Lee has kept them close the last couple of games. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.

For the second game in a row, Payton Lee was the best player in a Vancouver Giants uniform. And for the second game in a row, the 16-year-old goaltender from Cranbrook earned a big fat regulation loss for his efforts, as his teammates were unable to put together much of anything at the other end of the ice. Lee stopped 29 of 31 shots, but his Giants left Kamloops on the wrong end of a 2-1 scoreline.

Continue reading Payton Lee shines in back-to-back losses

Episode 48 – What Lockout?

Chris wears a shirt that is destined for ugly jersey greatness, offers to help cheer your opponents into oblivion, and makes an inappropriate comment about his ancestors. Jason is his usual smug, snickering self, but he scores a few points for adding some of Bruno Mars “Locked Out of Heaven” into the opening of the podcast.

  • Introduction
  • Locked Out of Heaven by Bruno Mars
  • Sofa Surfer Girl by the Orchid Highway
  • Somebody Approved This: Grizzly Adams Halloween Jersey
  • We don’t really miss NHL hockey all that much
  • Taylor Hall on AHL hockey
  • Abbotsford Heat still don’t get attendance love
  • Jason strokes his own photo ego
  • Time for a Change by the Orchid Highway

Things That Amuse Chris During the Lockout

With no NHL hockey in the foreseeable future, I’ve been finding other things to amuse me lately. Lamentation about the lack of NHL hockey is not one of those things, so do not look for an opinion on the lockout here. Instead, come with me as we journey through the wonderful world of Chris’s new sporting landscape! Continue reading Things That Amuse Chris During the Lockout

Maxim Shalunov – 1G, 1A in game 6

Chicago Blackhawks prospect Maxim Shalunov put in solid performances in the WHL leg of the Subway Super Series, including a goal and an assist in the final game in Victoria Thursday night. This guy is a dangerous skater, a real pleasure to watch. Here below be the pic I snapped of him at game 5 in Vancouver.

The Chicago Blackhawks picked Maxim Shalunov in the fourth round of last year’s NHL draft. If the Subway Super Series is any indication — and if the big league decides to play at some future point in time — they may have turned that 109th pick into a bit of larceny. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.

Brossoit outshines Makarov (or, “Nail who?”)

Everyone wanted to talk about Nail Yakupov. And don’t get me wrong, the #1 overall pick in the 2012 draft was every bit as dangerous as his billing. He’s explosive with the puck, and hungry for it, each and every single time he steps on the ice. There’s little doubt that if the NHL ever decides to play again, the Edmonton Oilers will cash in on this fellow, yet another young gun to add to their Halls and Eberles and Nugent-Hopkinseseses. Eses.

But the show on Wednesday didn’t belong to this superstar in waiting. It belonged to the goaltenders, who backstopped their teams to a scoreless draw after 60 minutes of fast, tough, hard-fought hockey in Vancouver.

So here’s to you, Laurent Brossoit and Andrei Makarov. You made great saves when you had to — Brossoit in the first 35 minutes, and Makarov in the final 25 — and you completely deserved the Player of the Game honours.

All photos are by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head. All rights reserved.

Laurent Brossoit makes a pad save on Mozer in the second period of Game 5 of the Russia-CHL Super Series in Vancouver. The goaltenders were perfect through 60 minutes, with the WHL stars winning in a shootout. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.

More pictures after the bump.

Continue reading Brossoit outshines Makarov (or, “Nail who?”)

Oklahoma City Barons earn split in Abbotsford

Look closely and you’ll see Justin Schultz’s November 10 winning puck frozen top shelf behind Danny Taylor, as Ryan Nugent-Hopkins looks on through his full face shield. For those of you who don’t know about these sorts of things, that’s some pretty fancy photographin’ right there. (Schultz may have done well on his end, as well…) Photo by Kenkoy for Pucked in the Head.

Coming into Saturday’s game, the Oklahoma City Barons hadn’t scored in nearly seven periods of hockey. The streak went back to a game last weekend against the Houston Aeros, and the Abbotsford Heat contributed another five and a half periods of frustration for the visitors from OC.

In between were a massive Aeros comeback to win that game, and consecutive shutout losses to the San Antonio Rampage and this very same Heat squad. As overheard in the media room before puck drop, “Will the young stars show up tonight? Probably, seeing as they’re going to be on TV.”

(Want more pictures, video highlights and warblings from yours truly? You got it. But first, buy this book. Or don’t. Your call.)

Continue reading Oklahoma City Barons earn split in Abbotsford

Winterhawks shred Giants

The good news: the offensively-challenged Vancouver Giants scored five times against the stingiest defense in the WHL. The bad news: the Portland Winterhawks scored nine goals themselves, catapulting Vancouver into the league’s worst goals-against position and embarrassing the G-men in front of 7,318 fans who packed the Pacific Coliseum on Friday night.

Portland Winterhawks captain Troy Rutkowski got an assist, but somehow managed to notch a -3 on the night, as his team trounced the Vancouver Giants 9-5 in WHL action November 9. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.
Portland Winterhawks captain Troy Rutkowski got an assist, but somehow managed to notch a -3 on the night, as his team trounced the Vancouver Giants 9-5 in WHL action November 9. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.

It’s not an altogether surprising result: the Winterhawks have lost just three games in regulation this year, and sit tied for second in the W with the Eastern Conference-leading Calgary Hitmen. They came into the game riding a nine-game win streak, where the Giants were considering a 3-3 split in their last six games a moral victory. On paper, then, Portland should win this game.

Continue reading Winterhawks shred Giants

Giants trade Musil to Edmonton

After more than three years in Vancouver, David Musil has celebrated his last goal in a Giants uniform. He was traded to the Edmonton Oil Kings on Hallowe’en day. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.

Hallowe’en brought tricks and treats to the Vancouver Giants this year. The treat: the G-men finally got some points on the road — a dramatic 4-3 shoot-out win over the Lethbridge Hurricanes. The two points came just days after beating the Victoria Royals for the first time in four tries this season.

The trick: the week also saw them move their top defenseman, David Musil, to the Edmonton Oil Kings for Mason Geertsen and a first-round pick in next year’s bantam draft. Musil has been one of the few consistent performers so far this year, collecting 8 points in 14 games and managing a respectable zero in the +/- department on a team that has far more players in the red than in the black.

Continue reading Giants trade Musil to Edmonton

Whitecaps vs. Galaxy Preview

These fans have more to cheer about than a longshot playoff game against the reigning league champs. They actually have evidence that Vancouver has some good soccer in their future. Photo stolen gratuitously from the web. Source: Jeff Vinnick/Getty Images North America

Well, it’s just about time. Tonight, at 7:30, every bloody reporter who’s ever heard of Major League Soccer can finally stop talking about how the Whitecaps ARE the first Canadian team in the MLS playoffs, and, in all likelihood, start talking about how the Whitecaps WERE the first Canadian team in the MLS playoffs. Continue reading Whitecaps vs. Galaxy Preview