From the NYRangers Blog in the beginning of the season:
Scotty Hockey adds…
“How do you bury the obit for Boogaard, the lives lost in the Lokomotiv crash and other summer casualties in a bad montage during a tv timeout? People are talking, getting up, walking around … And then, on the big screen, to wipe away from the cheesy ‘we will never forget’ frame to a bunch of people waiting to cheer for their Chase-sponsored free tee shirt? Disgusts me. The team smartly skipped the pregame talent – no Blue Man Group, no Ace Frehley – and wonderfully had FDNY and NYPD hockey players as an honour guard during the player introductions but all of the goodwill earned from that was wasted away by the obit. They could have included #94 when individually naming the players and have a moment of silence then. But instead it was shoehorned in while MSG ran some commercials for crap you won’t buy. Original Six teams are supposed to be classy.”
…couldn’t agree more.
And from today (really, now yesterday) the only ESPN reporter who matters, Katie Strang (@KatieStrangESPN): One Year After His Death, Boogards Memory Lives On.
So, there was an article on ESPN (if you want to give them hits, give them hits and go search yourself) where they looked at the matchup of NJ Devils v NY Rangers annnnd. Well, most of it was incorrect and/or you can tell that someone doesn’t watch (either) team that often. I might do one for the Rangers, but probably not only because a) it would be a zillion pictures of Henrik Lundquivst (as it should) and b) I have my own superstitions.
Top 5 Devils You Should Know:
1) Marty Brodeur (or Broduer if you talk to me on the internet because I will forever spell it the French-sounding way). I don’t know if you’ve heard of him or anything. He’s only some 40 year old goalie who is the NHL’s all-time leader in regular season wins, losses (shhhh!), shutouts, and games played, and holds a zillion and a half other league and franchise records. Every time he surpasses Patrick Roy in an award, a French whore gets her wings.
While I wait for you to get over the grossed out feeling you get figuring out that joke…. He’s also the reason the the NHL changed up the rules for goalies being allowed to handle the puck outside the goalie crease thanks to the fun he has in attempting to be his own d-man and points leader.
He and Cam Janssen had a bet going on this season that Marty would get more points then Cam (our right handed “4-minute” man (still better then being a 1-minute man)). And then there’s the whole “David Clarkson and Marty Brodeur bro-mance” thing.
Needless to say, he’s not the old grumpy bastard he was when he was younger….
2) Patrik Elias. I’m pretty sure if you follow this blog semi-regulary with posts such as “THE PATRIK ELIAS SHOW” or any of my Elias tags, you know how I feeeeeel about my Czech. He had his 1,000th game this season (that I practically had to sell a kidney to afford to go to the 1,000th & the “Game That They Hand Out The Award” game), he was reunited with his Czech twin Petr Sykora. He’s been quiet so far in the post-season but we’ll see what happens against one of his favorite teams to play against.
3 & 4) Captain Zach Parise and Co-Captain Travis Zajac. Am I the only one who calls him that? Probably. But, I know the team is at it’s best when they are both healthy and for awhile (originally it was Parise’s arm and then it was Zajac’s ACL) the Devils weren’t as good as they should’ve been with both of them hurting. While I’m still not entirely on board with Parise being the captain (if we want to be techinical, Elias is still my cap’n but seriously Scott Stevens is the only captain). But, yes. Both have gotten game winning goals in the post season and both during the year were muy caliente (I approve of any and all “THE DEVILS = FIRE-LIKE” references) during the year once Zajac came back from his terrible injury
5) some dude named Ilya. So, as we all know I go through love/hate/hate moods with Kovalchuk and have seen I saw his first Devils “hat trick” (people threw hats in Newark the first time he scored as a New Jersey Devil) and his actual hat trick in person. Somedays he’s just so frustrating on the ice and other days he’s fucking flawless. It’s maddening. Lately though (possibly because of French Grandpa’s work with him last season during our “lost” season, possibly because he’s maturing out of the Thrashers system and is more “Devils-like” (whatever that even means nowdays when the Rangers are the one more likely to scream ITS A TRAP now) or just because he wants to be better then the rest of the Russians in these playoffs) he’s been Good Kovie. Let’s hope it keeps up (note for all you fans who are not from the area – he gets super fiesty playing the Rangers so we might get KOVIE ANGRY, KOVIE FIGHT or two! hoorah!)
He had known and played with almost every player on the plane and was particularly close with former Devils teammate Alexander Vasyunov, a 23-year-old who had just returned to his hometown to skate for the Lokomotiv after three years in North America.
Yaroslavl head coach Brad McCrimmon had also been an assistant coach in Atlanta during Kovalchuk’s time with the Thrashers.
“He knew virtually every guy on that team,” Grossman said. “He was still there and went to the memorial that they had in the arena before coming over for training camp. It was a tough way to start the season for sure.
“He expressed to me early on he wanted to try to do something.”
The crash came so close to when NHL training camps opened that it affected many players deeply early in the year, something Grossman saw in several of his Russian clients.
Two young players, in particular, were affected. Vasyunov’s former roommate Vladimir Zharkov, who plays in the Devils system, and Florida Panthers prospect Evgeny Dadonov, who was his best friend (and also lost close friend Alexei Cherepanov to a heart ailment in 2008), both had difficult seasons on and off the ice.
Grossman even advised the NHLPA that they should keep an eye on those dealing with the tragedy.
“My point to the union was just you don’t know how it affects people,” Grossman said. “I made that statement to them because I could see [evidence of posttraumatic stress disorder] in some of them. As I spoke to players, there was hardly a guy that in some way didn’t know somebody on that team.”
Even now as the playoffs are ongoing, Kovalchuk’s fundraising continues. Autographed photos are available for a $17 donation and T-shirts for $71 by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. — Globe&Mail.com: The Yaroslavl Tragedy: Ilya Kovalchuk and the road to healingAdvertisements