Sunday, March 05, 2006

For Want of a Hammer

Brooks Orpik in the Uniform He Should Still Be Wearing


It seemed like minutes after I watched the Thrash's uber-goon, Eric Boulton, run the Craps Jamie Heward face first into the boards. I flipped back to the 'Canes game, and I'll be damned if the Pens Brooks Orpik doesn't take the same angle to ram Erik Cole head and neck first into the sideboards.

WHERE'S THE OUTRAGE? Hello Lavvy? Hello Roddy?

Yeah, Bret Hedican dove in to rabbit punch Orpik in the pile up that followed, but the 'Canes went right back to protecting the lead and looking for the breakout pass. You're up a couple of goals, what better time to lay-out one of these last place, dead-enders? Didn't Ryan Malone earn a "Thwack?" When crap like this happens, the "first responder" has always been Erik Cole. It's Cole who retaliates with vicious, but legal hitting immediately after. Who will now stand up in Colesy's place?

While this team continues to excel, I still see a profound weakness in the area of physicality. This will present a huge problem come playoff time. The teams that have beaten the 'Canes have brought the lumber and knocked the boys off stride. Early season losses to the Thrash and San Jose, and the January debacle in Washington are cases in point. Come playoff time, you think the Sens might turn Chris Neil, Brian Mcgratten, and Zdeno Chara loose on the 'Canes when they get a goal or two ahead?

I'm not talking about another Jesse Boulerice. I'm talking about somebody on the blueline, or maybe at wing, with better-than-AHL-skills who can dominate in the corners and intimidate in the open ice. It isn't gonna be Matt Cullen, Corey Stillman, or Ray Whitney. Waterbugs with skills we got. It might end up being Andrew Ladd. He'll probably take Cole's place if the injury is as bad as it looked last night. Sometimes it's better to be lucky than good. Ladd hasn't been very lucky in the health department.

I know Keith Tkachuk has recently said he won't waive his no trade clause. But what if he had the chance of joining Dougie Weight for one last playoff run? Salary wouldn't be a problem. Problem is, we've already given them our deadwood and draft pick. Might they be interested in Joe Vasicek and a goalie prospect?

On second thought, would JR really want to insert the Tkachuck/Weight dynamic to an already solid team chemistry? Nope. On second thought, belay my last.



d-lee said...

Shame on you! Shame on you for even suggesting that we deal the Condor. We will need him badly as soon as he's ready to return.

CasonBlog said...

Once you blog it, you can't take it back. You are a very loyal guy David. I'm a bit more Machiavellian. I hope they've included some Incredible Hulk level gamma radiation in Big Joe's rehab. I want him back big, fast and mean.

The Acid Queen said...

Hail Joe, Lord of Evil!

May he commence to laying the smack down as soon as superhumanly possible!

CasonBlog said...

It's the last two minutes of the Blues/Canucks game last night. Bertuzzi lays a flagrant elbow to the head of Dallas Drake. Who's sitting in the locker room a minute later icing the knuckles that connected with various parts of Bert's equipment and anatomy? It's Tkachuk.