It’s been months since the last drinking game here at PuckSage, I’m sure your liver transplant went well.
Disclaimer: Even if your participation in this game is limited to drinking water something stupid is likely to happen. No one actually cares what that stupid is since it will be your own damn fault, but if it should happen to get 500 or more votes on one of our favorite sites definitely send us a link, if it involves some hotties send pics too.
Take One Drink:
As soon as the season or all time record between the two is mentioned.
When Chara is mentioned as having captained an All Star Team.
When Alfredsson is mentioned as having captained an All Star Team.
If someone expresses amazement at Chara’s slapshot.
Take Two Drinks:
If Milan Michalek fails to be mentioned as an All Star.
When the word “Swede” is used in any form
When the word “Slovak” is used in any form.
If Naoko Funayama appears to be nearly as tall as any player other than Brad Marchand.
All the members of either the Bruins or the Senators landing on the same team is mentioned.
Take Three Drinks:
Whenever All Star footage is shown.
If it is noted Seguin had to wait longer than any other member of the Senators or Bruins to be drafted all star weekend.
If any NHL or NHL All Star record is mentioned.
When the division standings are mentioned.
Take Four Drinks:
If Erik Karlsson goes two shifts without someone mentioning he leads all NHL defensemen in scoring.
A coach is shown shaking his head after a blown call.
Someone asks someone not at the all star weekend about the break.
An interview occurs without a cliche.
Skip a drink:
If an incredibly stupid rumor is addressed.
You can’t tell which of the two glasses in front of you is yours.
You feel the urge to block a Zdeno Chara slapshot.
For variety we recommend having two drinks to participate with, if nothing else you’ll know it’s quitting time when you can’t tell the difference between your Patrone and Ketle One. No one is responsible for your idiotic actions under the influence of rum, vodka, tequila or your own genetic inferiority except you. Don’t blame me, don’t blame the NHL or the players, given the musical selections of most sporting events you won’t even be able to say gansta rap made me do it. However I’m sure both I and Tosh.O will greatly appreciate the opportunity to see your internet video on Youtube or elsewhere.
Tonight the Boston Bruins throwdown with the Ottawa Senators. Just days ago Tim Thomas, Tyler Seguin and Zdeno Chara faced Erik Karlsson, Milan Michalek, Jason Spezza and Ottawa Captain Daniel Alfredsson in the All Star game and skills competition. Tonight the goals count for more than bragging rights, the win will either provide separation or leave the division rivals in a points tie at the top of the Northeast division.
Tonight is the third of six games between the clubs this season. Thus far the magic number is “5′. The Bruins have scored five goals in each of the first two games. The Senators have scored a total of five goals in those two games. Boston Will be without Nathan Horton who continues to recover from his second concussion in a year, this suffered on an unpenalized hit against the Flyers. The Senators are missing Jesse Winchester and Peter Regin, both out indefinitely since December 21st.
Horton’s concussion, has fueled trade speculation with desired club acquisitions including the New York Islanders Kyle Okposo and the Phoenix Coyotes Ray Whitney. Zach Parise who can of course be had for a pair of 3rd year AHL nobody’s is also on the radar. Any of the three is as likely as the other at this point, but one name I think bears thinking about is one that was linked to the Bruins for three or four straight years. The biggest holdup on Carter escaping the host city for next years All Star extravaganza isn’t his desire to get out, unhappiness with the city or even his play. Players like Steve Montador, Joffery Lupul, Kris Versteeg and other frequent travelers not to mention every goalie who isn’t in the top five or six prove most organizations believe they can fix any problems with a player. Magical coaching is a belief held as commonly as not stepping on the logo on the locker room floors, even if no one is willing to admit it.
I think the tide has turned on the forever contracts. The ten years left on his contract will carry him past his 37th birthday. While he’s probably worth the slightly more than five million dollar cap hit he’s on the books for, it is hard to imagine dedicating that much cap space, regardless of actual salary to a 34 or 35 year old s fraught with tension for any general manager. A cap hit as high as Carter’s would make him the highest paid forward in a lot of cities, while unquestionably talented it remains to be seen if he has the ability to be the type of impact player generally associated with being the top paid player at a position.
Later this week, the Bruins will host the Carolina Hurricanes including much rumored blueline reinforcement Gleason has just signed a contract that should have Boychuk and Corvo’s agents laughing themselves silly. The Hurricanes sit 15th in the east and 27th overall, but have taken the previous meetings this season with the Bruins. Saturday the Pittsburgh Penguins skate in for a matinee. The potentially Crosbyfied Penguins will arrive in Boston with days rest off of a back to back home and home set against the Toronto Maple Leafs where Brian Burke (@LeafsBB20) will probably kvetch about Don Cherry some more.
Across the month of February the Bruins play 13 games in 28 days including three back to backs sets. Five of this months games are against teams not currently in playoff position. Six games are against teams currently in the top five in their conference including two games against the Senators, games against the Penguins and Rangers, and a tilt with the Predators.
The All Star break is over, real hockey is ready to return. Coming over the boards in the Second City will be some familiar faces. Jonathan Toews will be back from injury just in time to face the Vancouver Canucks. Patrick Kane (@88PKane) who has been a little distanced from his usual prowess look to have gotten his swagger back at over the All Star weekend. Patrick Sharp who has missed eight games this season is standing on the horizon poised to retake the ice, and help push the Blackhawks back to being the most prolific offense in the west. Worse still for the competition, is they have added a center that will free up Kane, Hossa and Sharp to stay at wing full time and chase after the dominance they had in the run up to the Stanley Cup two springs ago.
With their first game out of the break against perhaps their most bitter rivals the Vancouver Canuck it’s doubtful any of the BlackHawks will fail to check-in for the game. Many fans will feel cheated that team is deprived of Roberto Luongo, the NHL’s premier big game goalie who some in Chicago (and elsewhere) have come to regard as their lawful prey. Brendan Morrison (@7bmo) who played with the Canucks for seven seasons will have plenty of reasons to get excited for his first game in Chicago uniform, including renewing the chase for next years contract.
A look at the standings at the start of the playoff stretch shows the Blackhawks in sixth place in the west. Three of the teams ahead of them are also in the airtight Central Division. The Detroit Red Wings sit at the top of the food chain with an equal number of games played and a staggering home win streak to their credit. Chicago needs to gain four points on Detroit to win the division. Their remaining schedule of 32 games includes 11 games against teams not currently in playoff position. When it’s all said and done that could be the difference between first in the division, and possibly the conference and being forced to open the playoffs on the road.