Tag Archives: Anaheim Ducks

Round two: PITH predictions

We at Pucked in the Head don’t hang our heads in shame and tears just because the Vancouver Canucks had their behinds handed to them by the low-down, dirty, rotten, head-shottin’, potshottin’, ball-droppin’ Flames. Nay, we hold our heads high and own our team’s decades-long failure to bring a Cup to the west coast. At least we’re not the bloody Leafs, right?

And so, we put our heads together and prognosticate the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs for your scoffing pleasure.

New York Rangers vs Washington Capitals
Kudos to the Capitals for skirting past the New York Islanders, but even with Alex Ovechkin honouring defensive assignments they won’t have enough to get past the Vigneault-led Blueshirts. Lundqvist outsaves Braden Holtby in a series whose brevity belies hard-fought games. Rangers in five.

Chris: If there’s anything to indicate that Washington can take New York in a best-of-seven, I haven’t seen it. The Rangers steamrolled Pittsburgh and then took the weekend off while the Islanders gave the Caps all they could handle. (That’s right: Eleven shots on goal is about all the Capitals could handle.) Ovechkin may be the best player in this series, but New York is deeper, and Alain Vigneault shouldn’t even need a full pack of lozenges to out-coach Barry Trotz. Rangers in five.

Montreal Canadiens vs Tampa Bay Lightning
Should be a barn-burner. The Lightning netted a whopping 41 more goals than the Habs during the regular season, but Montreal’s defence was much stronger. On recent form, my money goes to Tampa. They dispatched Detroit without a single goal from Steven Stamkos, and you can only hold that man off the score sheet for so long. Meanwhile, the Canadiens were lucky to get past Ottawa in a game six where a referee’s untimely whistle cost the Sens a tying goal in a contest they dominated. Lightning in seven.

Jason: Kudos to the Bolts for getting past the ageing wreck of a Red Wings team that barely made the post-season. I mean, the Wings have only been mired in a Mike Babcock will-he-or-won’t-he story all year long, and got to Game Seven on the strength of a handful of nobodies ruddering a ship full of greybeards. The Habs, on the other hand, have been the class of the East for a couple of seasons, boast perennial candidates for the Norris and Vezina trophies, and ride the winds of the most powerfully emotional fan support in North American sport. Individually, what’s not to love about seeing PK Subban flatten Steven Stamkos? These guys have been playing hockey against each other for twenty years already, and damned if it ain’t more fun every year. Canadiens in six.

Anaheim Ducks vs Calgary Flames
Do we really have to talk about this? Where the Canucks and Flames both exceeded expectations by just making the dance in the first place, the Ducks have been promising a deep run for years. Getzlaf, Kesler, Perry, Beauchemin, Fowler… This roster is deeper than any of the wrinkles walking into Botox clinics around the Honda Center. The Flames are hard-working, sure, but they’re just a bunch of Grade Eight boys hanging about in the corner, ogling the good looking seniors across the gymnasium floor. Ducks in two and a half.

Chris: Seeing the Flames in the second round is enough to make me want to vomit like I’d just eaten undercooked fowl. Undercooked, by the way, is exactly what I expect these particular fowl to be at the end of the Pacific Division Final. The Flames are a terrible possession team, and their luck won’t get them close enough to roast the Ducks. The Saddledome crowd helps Hiller steal one from his old team, but Ducks in five.

Chicago Blackhawks vs Minnesota Wild
Devan Dubnyk has been outstanding, but I’m not convinced he can hold off the Hawks’ firepower. Both teams have high-end defencemen that can do a number on the opposition’s top line, but the Wild lack the offensive depth that Chicago has in spades. One ray of hope for Minnesota: Corey Crawford is in net, and Chicago conceded 21 goals to a similarly dubious offensive team in Nashville. The goaltending disparity will keep the series interesting, but Chicago outscores its problems. Hawks in six.

Jason: The Chicago Blackhawks have somehow flown under most people’s radars this season. Jeez Louise, people, this team is full of all-Stars, Olympians and beauties who fuckin’ work their nuts off, and has won two of the past five Stanley Cups. As for the Wild, Thomas Vanek has been promising to do something important in the playoffs for years, but hasn’t helped a team win anything since the 2003 Golden Gophers took the NCAA championship. Maybe it’s unfair to saddle the guy with his teams’ lack of success, but damnation, does this guy ever know how to pull a disappearing act in the post-season. Ryan Suter can’t do everything, man. Hawks in five.

Episode 61: Round One Chatter

After unanimously anointing the Vancouver Canucks as round two participants in the last podcast — thereby sending the Calgary Flames into the wasteland of central Alberta golf courses — Russell and Jason break down the seven remaining series.

• Shoddy math
• Next World by the Orchid Highway
• Arbuthnit? Arbuthnet? Arbuth… Russell, anyway
• The Seven Deadly Sins
• Montreal Canadiens versus Ottawa Senators
• A little playoff trivia fo’ ya
• New York Islanders vs Washington Capitals
• Tampa Bay Lightning vs Detroit Red Wings
• New York Rangers vs Pittsburgh Penguins
• Nashville Predators vs Chicago Blackhawks
• Jason & Russell make it interesting
• Anaheim Ducks vs Winnipeg Jets
• St Louis Blues vs Minnesota Wild
• Bonus fantasy Anaheim vs Minny, StL vs Jets content
• Russell stopped listening a while ago
• William Tell Overture by Russell ArbuthNOT
• William Tell Overture by random symphony orchestra
• Thanks for listening

Don't like our choices? Fill out this bad boy your bad self!
Don’t like our choices? Fill out this bad boy your bad self!

Playoff predictions – Western Conference

Fans in Vancouver are predictably blasé about the NHL playoffs; the Canucks have missed the post-season for the first time since 2008, and YVR hockey fans aren’t exactly renowned for loving the game so much as their team. (Case in point: the Abbotsford Heat are shutting up shop at the conclusion of their playoff run after years of decreasing returns in the Valley. People out thisaway are so scared of Calgary Flames cooties they’ve refused to see professional puck for $20.)

We at Pucked in the Head believe in celebrating the game, even when our local team comes up lame. Here are Jason’s picks for this year’s post-season. He’s so concussed by the ascension of Zack Kassian and the retirements of Teemu Selanne and Ryan Smythe — not to mention the bizarre first-round matchups determined by the NHL’s new wild card system — that he’s thumbing for Stanley Cup supremacy…  the San Jose Sharks (!?!?!?!)

Playoff bracket


Eastern Conferece – click here.

Continue reading Playoff predictions – Western Conference

Somebody Approved This: Mighty Ducks of Anaheim Retro Jersey

The hideous runs so wide and so deep in this maroon disaster, not even Teemu Selanne can cleanse my eye sockets. Photo stolen from ducks.nhl.com
The hideous runs so wide and so deep in this maroon disaster, not even Teemu Selanne can cleanse my eye sockets. Photo stolen from ducks.nhl.com

In an age of hyper marketing, intense competition and tightly controlled PR, it’s amazing that truly horrible ideas can still make it past the brainstorming stage. Whether it’s the nightmare of design by committee or just a conflagration of mediocre talents pulling the wool over the eyes of out of touch rich CEOs, we occasionally see awful designs rolled out in an underwhelming explosion of anticlimax. Today, we analyze the most recent NHL obscenity with the resurrection of Somebody Approved This.

One month ago today, the Anaheim Ducks warned the world that they hated us all. Instead of disconnecting our cable, building shelters and indiscriminately hooking up with old flames, it seems that hundreds of people instead lined up to purchase a retro maroon Mighty Ducks of Anaheim jersey. You say you don’t remember, but you do: it’s the one replete with angled grey stripes and Disney’s duck-faced Jason mask.

During tonight’s game against the Ottawa Senators, the Ducks will wear these abomaroonations, play early 90s music, and charge just 93 cents for popcorn, candy and soft drinks. That’s right, folks, today you can look bad, sound worse and develop type two diabetes — all for a single greenback!

More, including the always-entertaining Withers Haiku, after the break. Continue reading Somebody Approved This: Mighty Ducks of Anaheim Retro Jersey

Episode 51: Habs, Ducks & Lacklustre Canucks

Chris & Jason discuss the midseason surprises of the shortened 2013 NHL season, and wonder if the window has perhaps shut early on the Vancouver Canucks wündercore assembled by Mike Gillis & predecessors Brian Burke & Dave Nonis. They also wave buh-bye to the Vancouver Giants, whose season ends without playoffs for the first time in a decade.

Fifteen-year-old forward Jakob Stukel wears the full face shield against the Kelowna Rockets during one of his six trial games with the Vancouver Giants. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.
Fifteen-year-old forward Jakob Stukel wears the full face shield against the Kelowna Rockets during one of his six trial games with the Vancouver Giants. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.

• Introduction
• Sofa Surfer Girl by the Orchid Highway
• 30 seconds of soccer talk
• Vancouver Giants season is over
• Hybrid icing / a lack of brains
• Habs & Ducks
• Chicks dig stats
• Ducks & Habs
• The Canucks are whelming Chris Withers
• Columbus just might make the playoffs
• Time for a Change by the Orchid Highway
• Thanks for Listening

Goalie controversy in Vancouver? Nah.

Vancouver Canucks goaltender Cory Schneider leans against the wall post-practice at UBC's Thunderbird Arena. He's entitled, after a 20-hour commute, a morning workout and a full practice with his NHL teammates. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.
Canucks goaltender Cory Schneider let in 5 goals on 14 shots in his first game as the #1 goaltender in Vancouver. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.

Coming into the 2013 season, Cory Schneider looked forward to his first action as an NHL starter. Halfway through his first game as the #1 guy in Vancouver — a game that was essentially a pre-season game, just with points that count in the standings — he had let in five goals on 14 shots, and the guy wearing #1 on his back was taking over the crease.

Immediately, people all over Twitter, on radio call-in shows and even in the booth on CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada started talking about goaltending controversy in Vancouver. What they didn’t talk about was the invisibility of Alex Burrows, the ineffectiveness of the second and fourth lines, or the shakiness of the “deepest defensive corps in the NHL”.

But yeah, goalie controversy, right? We thought we’d look at each goal one at a time to determine just who the goat and/or goats were. Here it is, right after the jump.

Pucked in the Head is taking part in the 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer. You can help us reach our fundraising goal by throwing a few bucks at our campaign, at http://www.conquercancer.ca/goto/jasonkurylo2013.

Continue reading Goalie controversy in Vancouver? Nah.