It was a bad week. No one’s calendar week ends on a Friday, Saturday just had to be part of last week. Let it be a bygone.
The Giants won. That makes me regret not trying to offer up my hometown baseball team for a Flyers win. It occurs to me that my otherwise improbable affinity for orange and black might have something to do with early childhood visits to the ball park. I can see how that, plus Halloween candy, might have created an indelible connection between orange, black, and happy thoughts.
Could be. I still would have traded the Giants win for a Flyers win yesterday.
I didn’t consider trying to bargain for Sharks points, that has never worked out well. But I’m not sure how much worse it could have been for the Flyers, game-wise.
To give credit where credit is due: no dreadful injuries, unless you count emotional distress. That is good. I am grateful.
A loss for the Flyers last night was not the worst thing that could have happened in hockey. I’m trying to remember what good happened in that game. I will have to check with someone who remembers details better than I do under stress. At least my theory that Bob was playing with a better team than Boosh was has gained some credibility. Then again, it was not a good learning experience for him, not yet.
It did cross my mind a couple of times that I would like to see Leino playing more with Zherdev. For all I know, they were out there together, my memory is all hazy. At least twice Leino sent the puck to center and I thought, “Gee, that’s the sort of thing Zherdev likes to be there for.” Call me crazy or blind, but that’s what I thought. I do know that probably Leino’s linemates have something to do with him being effective as he is, I would not actually question Laviolette’s decisions.
I did notice some details. Fleury looked really and truly happy about the win, which is either a good piece of acting from him or else a genuine response to how his team has, at least for the moment, stopped doing very badly. I think the second, because I like him. It wasn’t his game to win, and I hope he gets to start again soon.
I also saw Matt Cooke ignore a little girl with her hand out as the team left the ice. I don’t know if he ignored her, but he did not touch her hand the way the players in front of him had done. He did have his stick in that hand but that hardly seems like an insurmountable handicap, not for a hockey player. Maybe he wasn’t the first to not acknowledge her (he wasn’t the last) but I pay more attention to what he does since he makes me nervous. I really don’t like that team.
And the Flyers? Argh. Their puck was in love…with the post. All kissy-kissy. More magnetism troubles?
And someone needs to coin a new term for bad turnovers. Something like suger-free rhubarb pie. Something to describe the sour pass the other team snatches up. I’m sure the Flyers didn’t mean to give it away, something evil was in their brains last night, clouding their vision. When that evil spirit finished in Philly, it came to San Jose.
One of the commentators, I forget which, said that the Sharks’ best game this season was the first against Columbus. I had to wonder if he watched that game. In neither Stockholm game did the Sharks come close to the level of play they displayed in the first period last night. I don’t know if one period can raise the grade on a whole game, especially if it precedes two terrible periods, but that’s how I see it. It was a flash of things to come I hope. Everything was rosy, the Sharks were moving well and with purpose (and with the puck) and the two goals were a natural product of that harmony, cadence, whatever you want to call good form.
I was very happy that they were Heatley’s and Clowe’s goals. They seemed overdue. The second goal was lovely. Mitchell shot so hard it looked a little fluky at first but on review it was a brilliantly executed plan. It could not get better than that. It didn’t.
Wallin looked good, I thought. He seemed to be very much in the right place most of the time. And Niemi did make some good saves, and did not slide so far so often.
Some argued that Nitty should have played last night. Something about a spotless record against the Thrashers. Against who? It is my understanding that the Thrashers and the Maple Leafs are in the running for Most Players Moved last Summer. Three of the four goals they scored were by newcomers. My sense is that the team is hardly recognizable, so whatever team Nitty faced before bears little resemblance to the Thrashers who showed up last night. I don’t know if Nitty could have stopped that bad goal. I don’t think there is much to choose between our Finns. I have a feeling this is how it will be. I hope they both play. I don’t see any reason to wear one out when you don’t have to.
At least I can once again blame Byfuglien. I believe his very presence on the ice is a bad omen. I am very happy he will go away and not come back soon.
Before the game, I checked in at the message board. The Game Day Thread was there and full of optimism and wild predictions. I thought that was strange. Mostly, such optimism is rarely seen on that board. Also, the people making those predictions must not have watched or even read about the Blue Jackets games. I was just hoping the team had pulled it together at least a little. Then again, maybe it was the bizarro hockey week from hell.
It just started to rain. It’s a new week now, the rains have come. All may be well.