Back in the mid-seventies of my youth, I used to collect baseball cards. Across the street lived a nice kid who was kind of the neighborhood Gilligan. I got him into collecting baseball cards as well, largely so I could fleece him of any good ones he'd get in a pack. Hey Chris, how about Lerrin LaGrow for Rod Carew? It's a great deal for you Chris cause LaGrow is a pitcher and they're worth more than some old outfielder/first basemen. No, the only reason I want Carew is cause...my bat has his name on it, and I thought it might be cool to have the card of the guy who's (broken) bat is in my garage. I wasn't a total schmuck. I let him keep the gum. I hope JR is making sure Dale Tallon gets some gum.
I know it's a knee-jerk reaction after one game, but I already dig Tuomo Ruutu. Kid was a one-man wrecking crew in his debut. And he's got the Frankenstein stitches to prove it. Tuomo made every Devil on the ice nervous on every shift. He was in Elias' girlie little melon all night. In three years, I can't recall Andrew Ladd hitting anybody with the explosiveness Ruttu showed last night in the two colossal hits he laid on Colin White and Patrik Elias. Guy played like a hungry wolverine set free in a pasture full of sedated bunny rabbits. Ladd never seemed quite 6"1" 200+. Ruutu looked huge last night. He looked David Byrne in the big suit/roid-rage huge (see photo above).
That other escapee from the Indian, Sergei Samsonov, continues to thrive in the Canes up-tempo-always transitioning to the attack style of play. Have you noticed he's moving north and south with the puck much more lately? Much less of that cross the blueline and turn 270 degrees, and dump it to Wesley stuff.
Last night was the best game I've watched all season. Spectacular goal tending. Intense physical action. Venom was in the house from the cheap seats all the way down to down Staal's pointy shoulder. The first period was a demolition derby. The second was WWI in the trenches of the western front. In the third, the Canes took over.
So this is the crew JR and Lavvy will go to war with. I like this crew. All they have to do is play it physical and up-tempo and good things will happen. Last night was a good illustration of what speed, opportunism and a few human missile salvos can accomplish against arguably the best team in the east. Should be a fun stretch run.