Dobber - Thanks Chris! Hope to see you back next year. For now, Sundays will bounce around between writers, including myself and Angus, but Ryan Ma will take a stab at a couple as well.
This week, I hope to relaunch the Dobber sites and introduce to you a new website. While that is being done, I am addressing some security issues (just some idiots planting harmless but annoying spam on some pages). I’ll also be addressing recent issues that have come up with regards to accessing the site via mobile phone. For what I figure has been about 10 days now, some of you have been unable to access DobberHockey. For now, give DobberHockey.mobi a try.
Regardless if the Caps get eliminated, I’m adamant in my belief that Braden Holtby should battle Michal Neuvirth for the starting job next year. Goaltending is not the problem with this team – and Holtby is their best goaltender.
Alex Semin led the Caps with five shots, Thornton led the Bruins with five shots. Semin played 29 minutes, Thornton played eight.
A couple of quick thoughts on the games overall – I thought the Matt Carkner thing (clip added to bottom) spurred the Sens. Boyle punched Karlsson, so Carkner punched Boyle. I also thought the Shaw hit on Mike Smith rattled the goaltender enough to make a difference. Dirty plays that got the players into hot water – but won the game and in the case of Chicago may eventually win the series. This is looking as though teams need to do this… or have this done to them. Let’s say Phoenix sends out a non-star to take liberties on Jonathan Toews and that non-star gets suspended – if Phoenix gets momentum back if Toews is put out of the lineup, it will have been worth it, no? My point – teams may be starting to think that way. Vigilante justice. Unless the league and the refs seize control back. Brandon Dubinsky was kicked out for being the third man in on that Boyle fight.
The Rangers could be in trouble is Ryan McDonagh is out. He blocked a wicked shot from the point off the inside of his ankle.
Carl Hagelin also hit Daniel Alfredsson with an oustretched elbow to the side of his head. Guaranteed suspension there, and Hagelin out of the lineup could mean Chris Kreider – in.
Alfredsson left the game. No word on the severity.
Jaroslav Halak also left the game with a lower body injury, and Brian Elliott came in and shut the door. I’d have to think that they ride Elliott until he falters, whether Halak is healthy or not.
Do yourself a favor, if you missed the Sharks/Blues game. Scroll through the scoring summary – penalty section. It’ll take awhile. After the buzzer there were five misconduct penalties handed out. Fifteen players in that game had four minutes in penalties or more.
Yes, the theme of my little ramble today is – vigilante justice. Let’s see if that continues throughout the first round. It hid some of the exciting things, such as all the OT games, or the Patrick Sharp tying goal with six seconds left, etc.
Antoine Vermette scored twice – but was a minus-3!
Youtube clips added to the bottom here.
A week from now, you’ll be able to find me (although not if I can help it) near Pebble Beach on a weeklong working vacation. Ocean view. Room service. Can. Not. Wait.
But, this will be my last Ramblings here at DH... at least for awhile. The invite has been extended to return and chances are excellent that will happen in October for next season, unless the NHL and its players are incomprehensibly embroiled in a lockout/strike.
I actually could have stayed on now for the normal Sunday Ramblings schedule through next season, but if you know me then you know once the regular season is over those weekends sans work are like gold. Can’t put a price on that.
The past six months or so have been quite a lot of fun here. I was fairly apprehensive about taking on Ramblings in the first place when Darryl made contact last fall - strictly due to concerns about fitting it in on top of the normal Saturday night gong show writing schedule - but he and everyone here at DH have been incredibly friendly and it turns out I actually CAN do 12 things at once.
Don’t let my wife know. The summer chore schedule will be hell if she finds out.
The whole DH community, starting with Darryl (class act, intelligent businessman and a nice guy to boot) and flowing through the entire staff here and out to the readership, have helped to create a tremendously positive experience. That includes those of you from my following who have been closet DH patrons. I know who you are now. Cyber Scarlett Letter applied. ;)
But seriously, if I could leave you with one thought it’d be this:
Your backing makes a tangible difference in the lives of those of the few of us who are fortunate enough to do this sort of thing – and this alone - for a living. Truly.
If you enjoy my Sportsnet.ca blogs, be it Hockey Hearsay (every weekday, 12 months of the year) or the Live NHL Recaps (regular season)... or if you peruse ANY of the vast array of columns from the numerous authors here at DH... then support the content so it continues to stay around year after year.
For my subject matter, it’s virtually 100 percent about the page views, whether via the web or smartphone. Positive comments under the blogs are always encouraged and Twitter followers serve a purpose too, but hits are the prime currency.
Read HH in the playoffs. And the summer. Visit often during the season.
Buy the guides when they come out here at DH. They’re only a few bucks here and there and it’s one way you can show your encouragement for the work that goes on at this site. Read the articles. Come back for fresh Ramblings updates. Hits are extremely important at DH as well, as with any internet-based content.
You don’t have to agree with everything that’s ever written here. That’s not the point. It’s about supporting the concept of having a poolie-friendly haven where we of the fantasy brethren can gather.
Thank-you – sincerely – for your support of my work both here and at SN. It means a lot.
Enjoy the playoffs.
Should you be so inclined, follow me on Twitter for NHL and fantasy info as a safe mobile notifications options with minimal self-involved dreck in 140-character spurts.
Ross... FYI & FWIW, here's the deal so you and anyone else who was thinking the same thing knows:
Per my initial agreement with the site, last Sunday was going to be my finale Ramblings to coincide with the end of the regular season. I had planned to tack this "farewell" sentiment onto the end of that evening's work.
Sometime during the week before that finale Sunday, Darryl asked if I could do one extra week. With some of the things he alluded to off the top of his Ramblings today, he's been really busy of late and needed a little extra time so he and I could talk about our possibilities going forward.
I said sure, for him I'd be happy to do an extra week. Then, early this week, it turned out that he caught up with everything. We had a chance to map out what we might do together for the fall. He also said he'd be able to have this Sunday covered, so I didn't need to worry about it anymore.
So I made other plans. Then Thursday, he let me know it turned out he couldn't get coverage for today's Ramblings after all. I told him I knew at that point I wouldn't be watching any of Saturday's games (although I caught overtime of the BOS/WAS game, hence my tweet wondering why Caps players would be jumping into Nicklas Backstrom in the boards after he scoring the winner when the guy is coming off half-a-season of lost games from a concussion) and also wouldn't have time to write something... but said I could pen the farewell tidbit I had initially planned to do last weekend, if that would help.
Perfect, he said. Then people won't wonder where you went. He would then tack on some game notes on Sunday when he had a chance, but wouldn't have to worry about writing anything Saturday night. Win-win.
So... that's the scoop, as it unfolded. Hence the "improper ramblin'". I thought about mentioning the highlights of this when I wrote this Ramblings message out Friday in the first place, but didn't figure it was necessary. Apparently it was.
Matt Carkner jumps Brian Boyle and gives him a message – “no punching Karlsson”. Later in the clip, Dubinsky makes his entry into the Gatorade bucket toss contest:
Shaw hammering Mike Smith, who was down and out – but returned.