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Morning Java: On Panthers, Dukes, Hounds, 300 sellouts

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Morning, Lunatics …

>> The TribLIVE Radio show today — 2-3 p.m. — will feature live special guest Jim Ferry of Duquesne, whose team will tip off against Pitt in the City Game this weekend … and will be a robust underdog, if only because of what we’re seeing from the Panthers in the early going.

Call me at 412-320-7925 or email sportstalk@tribweb.com

To listen, just click on the link above. If you’re mobile, try the TribLIVE Radio app.

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>> Jamie Dixon’s Panthers look for real, don’t they? Kevin Gorman reports from Brooklyn on a stirring rout of Stanford to win the Progressive Classic.

All I’ll add is that, in a talk I had with Cam Wright last week, I asked where his team will find its offensive identity without a true go-to guy. His response: “Our defense.”

>> The Penguins and Leafs face off tonight in front of what will be the 300th consecutive sellout in Pittsburgh. Rob Rossi authors a commemorative page for that in today’s Trib.

Here’s our full Penguins coverage.

Here’s Leafs news from the Toronto Star.

Here are official game highlights from NHL.com.

>> The Steelers’ O-line is jellin’ like Magellan, by Alan Robinson.

>> Ben Roethlisberer was right about all those rookie QBs. A column by Joe Starkey.

>> Le’Veon Bell is revving it up, by Mark Kaboly.

Here’s our full Steelers coverage.

Here’s Ravens news from the Baltimore Sun.

Here are official game highlights from NFL.com.

The quarterback spoke to a dozen or so of us over there …

Random randomness from the scene: Really healthy feel to the locker room. If you want an example, here’s what a softly smiling Troy Polamalu told me as the locker room session closed: “Steelers and Ravens, brother. Everything is good. This is how it’s supposed to be.” … When I tweeted that, prominent NFL agent Ralph Cindrich replied with this: “Sounds like what you would hear from two old fighters getting ready to get it on again. Nothing slows it.” Awesome. … One of my favorite things about Jason Worilds: Anytime someone asks him a question about playing well, he opens his answer with, “Thank you. I appreciate that.” … Worilds knows he’s playing well, make no mistake about that. … I was most moved by Ben’s praise for Kelvin Beachum at left tackle, especially in the context that Beachum continues to learn the position on the job. “I’m not going to say I’m surprised by Kelvin because that would suggest I didn’t have high expectations for him. But he’s doing the job. Cleveland called a corner blitz Sunday, and he picked it up like it was nothing.” … Really looking forward to this game. Not going to lie.

>> The Riverhounds continued to make offseason splashes by announcing an eye-opening partnership with the MLS powerhouse Houston Dynamo. Matt Grubba reports.

Here’s some of my talk yesterday with Chris Canetti, the Dynamo’s president, discussing Pittsburgh’s possible MLS future …

Random randomness from the event: The thing I found out at this press conference that struck me the most was that the Dynamo approached MLS in search of an affiliate, and it was MLS’ first recommendation to approach the Riverhounds. Someone’s paying attention. … Expect to see upgrades to still-new Highmark Stadium in the very near future. Not an expansion, just some practical stuff but highly visible. … You know those black nets over by the train-track side? You won’t see those when the season starts. Tuffy Schallenberger, the owner, wants them down. … Justin Evans has to coach at least half of an entirely new starting lineup next season, what with two other major offseason additions plus the four MLS guys coming from Houston. But, as he put it, “That’s a nice problem to have.” … In addition to the Dynamo possibly coming to Pittsburgh for a friendly during the World Cup break, Riverhounds CEO Jason Kutney says don’t be surprised to see Highmark Stadium opened up for outdoor viewing parties for the U.S. matches. Here’s one small vote in favor. … Readers will ask on occasion why I cover the Riverhounds and not any other second-tier team in the area. Days like yesterday are why. These guys are serious.

>> Here are this week’s three write-your-own-column winners …

Dennis Hollibaugh writes: If the Steelers did not want LaMarr Woodley to be their starting left outside linebacker, they would not have restructured his contract before the season adding more dead weight to the remainder of his contract; but they can want someone else to play the position Thursday night against the Ravens. Woodley is dealing with an injury and was unable to play this past Sunday. Even if he can go four days later, Worilds was  ready to go on Sunday, and go he did. Worilds will not be limited in practice, and will not need to get back up to speed. If Woodley is healthy, let him dress while starting Worilds on a short leash. If he struggles, Woodley is still the next best option, not to mention the long-term plan. If Worilds does not struggle however, Woodley could find himself going the way of Willie Colon in 2014.

Ron Bilak writes: Kris Letang, eight years, $58 million, age 26. Much like the Penguins, the parts of the player do not match or exceed his current play. Letang has incredible skating ability and can play a physical game. However, he is not a power-play QB, like Gonchar before him. To pay what the Pens paid, he should be the best power-play QB. He is not. Paul Martin is. His passes sometimes make you scratch your head. He should be part of a shutdown pair. He is not. The solution is not a trade. It is finding the right assistant coach to use the extreme talent he possesses. The organization should find a former player who can reinvent Letang. Another coach doesn’t hurt the cap. A player not playing to abilities does.

JAL writes: Can anything realistically revive hoops on the Bluff? The answer is yes. College basketball is cluttered with teams that came from nowhere to become successful. Butler has half as many students as Duquesne but had a great run in basketball. In Duquesne’s own conference, George Mason and Old Dominion have had some excellent seasons. Reviving Duquesne requires a good coaching staff that recognizes the type of athletes that make a good team. Ron Everhart had them moving in the right direction with an NIT appearance, a couple of CBI appearances, and a career record of 99-89. He was the only coach with a winning record since Mike Rice back in 1978-1982. We will never know if Everhart could have taken them a step further but his term shows that the right coach can revive the program. It will take a couple of years to see if Jim Ferry can move the program up the ladder.

>> Hope you have a chance to check out the show. If not, as always, I’ll have the podcast posted here on the blog shortly afterward.

I’ll also be at Penguins-Leafs tonight, then it’s off to Baltimore first thing Thanksgiving morning.

Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and, recently, his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the country's top four columnists by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the country's top three columnists by the National Headliners. For 2013, he was named the state's top columnist by the Keystone Press Awards and top columnist in Western Pennsylvania by the Golden Quills.

Comments

  1. DJ says:

    Based upon stats alone, Le’Veon Bell has not been impressive.

    Based upon the eyeball test, I like what I’ve seen so far.

    Love his size, body lean after contact, hands and fluidity as a runner. And he’s getting better every week.

  2. Jerry says:

    Great news regarding the Riverhounds! Any chance we see the team get some exposure on television next year?

    DK: Don’t think it’ll be straight TV next season, but an upgraded brand of live streaming.

  3. Fred says:

    Have watched Duquesne play this season. They can put up buckets with Pitt, can’t defend to save their lives though, especially from 3 point range. If Pitt has an off night shooting, we could see an upset, but if not, the tradition of Pitt winning will continue.

    and how about some love for the Duquesne WBB? Under a first year head coach and they are looking like a serious tourney team. They play Norte Dame up in Toronto this weekend.

  4. kr70 says:

    The 82nd airborne had “IT”. The 60 pirates and Pop”s Pirates had “IT”. The 70′s Steelers had “IT”. The 1980 USA hockey team had “IT”. John Wooden’s basketball teams had “IT”. Seems like Cael Sanderson’s wrestlers have “IT” Mario’s teams had “IT” This years penguins don’t. You score with .03 seconds left and lose? You have 2 of the best players on the planet and repeatedly can’t score. Your good but no “IT”. No magic, no mojo, no chemistry, no whatever, No “IT”. Will they get “IT”? I hope so or we will be disappointed at the end of the year.

  5. Pucknutz says:

    Don’t really give a hoot about soccer, but homer that I am, it is nice to see that this group is apparently serious about putting a quality team here. It appears at this point that they have the patience to build this correctly. Affiliating with a MLS team is a great step. Viewing parties sounds like a great idea – it has been very popular with the Pens and Pirates – great way to build your fan base at minimal cost.
    Anything that adds “value” to the city and region has my vote – so – Go Hounds !

  6. Jandy says:

    Well said, Puckers! I don’t follow soccer either, but I am thrilled for the Hounds :)

  7. JAL says:

    Under the Milky Way The Church 1988

    JAL’s Under the Milky Way Morning Links

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6jhpaX7fNQ

    GENERAL DAILY UPDATED BASEBALL SITES

    1- MLB Transactions

    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/transactions

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/pittsburgh_pirates/

    3 MLB Important Dates

    http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/schedule/important_dates.jsp

    BLOGS and such

    4—Pirates Prospects

    First Pitch: Why I Trust Neal Huntington
    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/11/first-pitch-why-i-trust-neal-huntington.html

    Winter Leagues Notebook: Pirates Have Talented Outfielders in Winter Ball

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/11/winter-leagues-notebook-pirates-have-talented-outfielders-in-winter-ball.html

    Pirates Sign Two Minor League Free Agents

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/11/pirates-sign-two-minor-league-free-agents.html

    5 Bucs Dugout

    Pirates’ Zack Thornton could be a top Rule 5 Draft prospect

    http://www.bucsdugout.com/2013/11/27/5150464/pirates-zack-thornton-could-be-a-top-rule-5-draft-prospect

    6 Rumbunter

    VIDEO: Pirates Sign Sidewinder Cody Eppley and Catcher Nevin Ashley

    http://rumbunter.com/2013/11/26/pittsburgh-pirates-sign-nevin-ashley-cody-eppley/

    7 Green Weenie

    Miles Mikolas

    http://oldbucs.blogspot.com/2013/11/miles-mikolas.html

    8 Comcast Sports net

    Will Orioles pull deal off for Garrett Jones?

    http://www.csnbaltimore.com/blog/orioles-talk/will-orioles-pull-deal-garrett-jones

    9 Pirates Site

    Bonds hopes to see doors to Hall open on second try

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article/pit/barry-bonds-hopes-to-gain-entry-to-baseball-hall-of-fame-on-second-try?ymd=20131126&content_id=64075432&vkey=news_pit

    10 Bleacher Report

    2014 MLB Offseason: Every MLB Team’s Rumor That Will Actually Come True

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1864921-2014-mlb-offseason-every-mlb-teams-rumor-that-will-actually-come-true

  8. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    11 Denver Post

    Rockies turn eye to Justin Morneau after hiring E.Y. Sr., Doyle

    http://www.denverpost.com/rockies/ci_24609195/coaches-place-slugger-up-next

    12 Huffington Post

    Top 10 Celebs Who Bleed For Their Team

    http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/gals-got-game/celeb-sports-fans_b_4341317.html

    13 NY Post

    No Hall vote stirs passion quite like baseball does

    http://nypost.com/2013/11/26/no-hall-vote-stirs-passion-quite-like-baseball-does/

    14 Grantland

    Bargain Hunting: Baseball’s Five Best Free-Agent Values This Offseason

    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/83841/bargain-hunting-baseballs-five-best-free-agent-values-this-offseason

    15 Baseball Nation

    The Rays and the seemingly inevitable David Price trade

    http://www.baseballnation.com/2013/11/26/5146554/david-price-trade-rumors-rays

    16 CBS Sports

    Analyzing the crowded 2014 Hall of Fame ballot

    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/eye-on-baseball/24286683/analyzing-the-crowded-2014-hall-of-fame-ballot

    17 St. Louis Post Dispatch

    Mozeliak on PED question: Cards not ‘morality police’

    http://www.stltoday.com/sports/baseball/professional/cardinal-beat/mozeliak-on-ped-question-cards-not-morality-police/article_64ee3bb6-3d48-541e-beeb-3d4ebf4a3036.html

    18 Business Insider

    Another Huge Contract For An Accused Steroid User Shows Baseball’s Drug Program Is Not Working

    http://www.businessinsider.com/another-huge-contract-for-a-steroid-user-shows-baseballs-drug-program-is-not-working-2013-11

    SPORTS WEBSITES

    19 Baseball Prospectus

    8 Unfulfilled Rumors From Last Year’s Hot Stove

    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=22311

    20 Fangraphs

    An Early Look at the Price of a Win This Off-Season

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/an-early-look-at-the-price-of-a-win-this-off-season/

  9. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    21 Behind the Steel Curtain

    Does side matter for the Steelers?

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/11/26/5149040/steelers-outside-linebackers-pass-rush-statistics

    Steelers Film Room: Style points awarded in rout of Browns

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/steelers-film-room/2013/11/26/5146368/steelers-film-highlights-gifs-cleveland-browns-campbell-sack-week-12

    22 Steelers Gab

    CB Brown Placed On IR; Green Promoted From Practice Squad

    http://www.steelersgab.com/2013/11/26/cb-brown-placed-on-ir-green-promoted-from-practice-squad/

    Soccer(football)

    23 NY Times

    Messi or Ronaldo?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/27/sports/soccer/messi-or-ronaldo.html?_r=0

    24 World Soccer Daily

    the stories you need to read – November 26, 2013

    http://www.worldsoccer.com/247/world-soccer-daily-the-stories-you-need-to-read-november-26-2013

    PENGUIN BLOGS and NHL Links

    25 Pensburgh

    Pens Points Tuesday: Boston Aftermath

    http://www.pensburgh.com/2013/11/26/5147452/pens-points-tuesday-boston-aftermath

  10. George Labecki says:

    This is a day early, but we start the day tomorrow cooking breakfast for thirteen. I offer the following:

    “There is one day that is ours. There is one day when all we Americans who are not self-made go back to the old home to eat saleratus biscuits and marvel how much nearer to the porch the old pump looks than it used to. Thanksgiving Day is the one day that is purely American.”
    – O. Henry

    On this most American of holidays, the Labecki family wishes you the inner peace that can be found in gratitude, nourished through family, and expressed by sharing. Cherish old memories and make new ones. Love and be loved.

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

  11. NMR says:

    Tuffy Schallenberger.

  12. Jandy says:

    Awesome. George, may you and your family have the most special Thanksgiving ever. :)

  13. Jandy says:

    Highmark Stadium

  14. Michael Keaton aka 'Batman' says:

    Since the Penguins play tonight, I ask only one question: will Bortuzzo be released from the doghouse?

  15. hockeymonster says:

    Pens should play a scene from “300″ tonight. Plenty good scenes to choose from to get crowd going.

    So its sill, ebbett, borts and engo instead of megna, despres and borts with engo at wing? Always liked ebbett as a heady playmaker, especially when he was in vancouver and anaheim. Hope his speed and vision can help sutter out. Kobasew back? Ebbett-sutter-kobasew on 3rd line?

  16. Jandy says:

    Jayson Megna, Chris Connor, and Simon Depres recalled from WBS

  17. hockeymonster says:

    Thanks jandster…knew i can count on you :)

  18. Jandy says:

    hey, I’m good for sumpin’ ;)
    You gotta get on the schtick, Monster Mash!

  19. hockeymonster says:

    I’m not the burn specialist you are….or am i… :)

  20. hockeymonster says:

    I’m not the burn specialist you are….or am i? … :)

    disregard below not sure how it ended up there

  21. Jandy says:

    you’re the specialist, all right…I’m must humble Mother Theresa ;)

  22. Jandy says:

    and that should say Just humble Mother Theresa…Jandy typo disease strikes again…

  23. You workin to day, J-girl?

  24. hockeymonster says:

    Aww shucks…and the not so humble blogmother?!?! Why do i get the hebbyjebbies saying/typing the word blogmother? :)

  25. hockeymonster says:

    disregard this post…was reply to above

  26. Damon says:

    Wow…not sure about Conner, but glad to see Megna and Despres back. Thanks for the heads up!

  27. Jandy says:

    Sure am Spunkster, and Friay too. Only one day off for me…but I’m thankful I have a good job, and great blog friends to chat with :)

  28. Jandy says:

    MonsterMash, you with the Monster name, and you’re getting heebie jeebies? ;)
    C’mon…everyone loves a Mother figure…but Monsters? :P

  29. Jandy says:

    Damon, I hear you! I was never sold on Conner…but right now I’m thinking we just need boies….too many men down!

  30. Drew71 says:

    Why this season is the SEC’s Last Hurrah

    1. The SEC may do in the SEC. Alabama will have to get by two strong teams, Auburn and Missouri (or SC) to make the BCS Championship Game. I wouldn’t bet against them but an upset wouldn’t be a shock.

    2. If Alabama makes it through, Florida State will do them in.

    3. QBs are about done. The following SEC bowl eligible teams have starting QBs who are seniors or heading to the NFL: Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Missouri, Texas A&M. Only Auburn has a junior, a good one, Nick Marshall. But who’s to say he won’t declare for the draft? To be fair, Missouri has a highly touted red shirt freshman, Maty Mauk, who went 3-1 and played reasonably well in injury relief. But that’s a big class of good SEC QBs all leaving at once.

    4. Florida is done, period. The sudden, stunning demise of Florida clears the way for Florida State and Miami to catch a few more of the FL high school blue chippers who most often became Gators over the past decade.

    Why I May Be Wrong:

    I’ve been predicting the SEC’s Demise all season. And we all know how often EYE’ve been done in by Predictacevicitis.

    DK: Nicely done, Drew.

  31. Milo Hamilton says:

    Looking forward to this afternoon’s Rose Garden ceremony when the President pardons the traditional Thanksgiving health plan.

  32. Dom says:

    Happy premature birthday to Marc Andre Fleury. He turns 29 tomorrow.

  33. Jandy says:

    Happy birthday to Beau Bennett. He turns 22 today :)

  34. Jandy says:

    Predictacevicitis, is there meds for this????

  35. theplanisworking says:

    Here is a list of people born on this date.
    Interesting stuff.

  36. Milo Hamilton says:

    I feel terrible for Aaron Murray. I thought he was going to need therapy after the Auburn game, now I just can’t imagine.

  37. 78 DAYS UNTIL PIRATE PITCHERS & CATCHERS REPORT TO PIRATE CITY FOR SPRING TRAINING

  38. Jim S. says:

    Arriba:

    Got your message yesterday re: UVA. Many thanks!

  39. theplanisworking says:

    As JRay3 and I were posting in the Pitt thread last night, this Pitt team is a different animal from previous years. The transition D is really strong, they aren’t committing silly fouls, and they are making opponents really work for almost every point.

    On offense, I relly dont recognize this Pitt team. They are running up the floor like they did when Lavance Fields was running the point, Durand Johnson is providing clutch outside shooting, and the team is spacing the floor much better, resulting in better passing lanes, and better shot opportunities.

    And, Detrick Mostella, a 4-star recruit may be joining the team next month, if he gets clearance from the NCAA. And, Sheldon Jeter, a poor mans Brian Shorter, will be joining the team next year. Add in unreal FT shooting, and this Pitt team could do some great things this year. They definitely be a force in the ACC.

    Finally, I am happy for Coach Dixon. He gets an unfair rap in this town, so maybe this team will help quiet a few critics. Pitt absketball is looking good.

  40. JAL says:

    SEC doesn’t demise, they just reload.

  41. theplanisworking says:

    +++++++++++++

    Thanks, Groat!

  42. I have {and will always be} critical of Pitt’s JV-type early basketball schedule . . . .

    . . . . but their play against decent true Division 1 teams the last two nights really opened my eyes.

    ——Lamar Patterson has lost some weight, tightened up both his body and his game, and is not the same player
    ——who were those guys hitting foul shots?
    ——who were those guys taking the ball to the hoop rather than throwing it back and forth outside for 23 seconds?
    ——Cameron Wright is not the same player
    ——James Robinson is a heck of a ball distributor
    ——ZONE: that zone collapsing on the bigger players created NO space to pivot
    ——that kid from Duquesne is a heck of a frosh

    Jamie has a NEW team with some old players who remade themselves over the summer. Congrats!!
    Should soon appear in the Top 25 now that they are NOT playing Woodland Hills JV.

  43. theplanisworking says:

    The RiverHounds are now affiliated with Houston in MLS. This is a huge step forward for them. I dont know which is more impressive………….. the fact Houston and the Hounds signed the deal, or the fact that MLS recommended the RiverHounds for this opportunity.

    DK, I have to ask you…….. how much of a surprise is this to you? Was this something that was out of the blue? Or did you hear rumors about this before?

    All I can say is ………….. GO RIVERPUPPIES !!!!!!!!!!1

  44. Bizrow says:

    Is this Tuesday or Wednesday??

    I’m pretty sure its not Sunday, no NFL stuff on ESPN ….

  45. I don’t know: I hear there is a recession in the South . . . .

    . . . . . that might cut down on those bi-weekly envelopes

  46. Milo Hamilton says:

    Another nice job by the weather guessers. Done in by the dreadded dry slot.

  47. I cannot remember the last time I was so excited to be a Minor League affiliate:

    ——probably in 2007 and 2008 with the Pirates for the Yankees and Red Sox

  48. theplanisworking says:

    Groat, Duke does the same thing.
    Only difference is that schools like Duke, Kentucky, Michigan State, they do the tournaments with other strong schools in the preseason. But look at some of Duke’s opponents this year……….

    Davidson,
    Florida Atlantic,
    UNC Ashville,
    East Carolina,
    Vermont,
    Gardner-Webb,
    Elon.

    Not exactly strong teams.
    Almost every team does it. They do it for the $$$$$ of a home game.

    I guess I have to say to you what you said to JRay3 last night,
    Groat, be a fan, not a fanatic!!

  49. Scott says:

    Required reading for any Pens fan: Mark Madden analyzes what’s wrong with the Pens (a lot), and why.

    http://www.1059thex.com/pages/markmadden.html?article=11861880

  50. theplanisworking says:

    +1

  51. Drew71 says:

    You can’t fit Camaros in envelopes.

  52. Jandy says:

    haha go ahead, rub it in, Biz :P

  53. Milo Hamilton says:

    Thanks Scott. Required reading indeed. I’ll add just two words – Country Club.

  54. theplanisworking says:

    You ++++ me, even tough I had Jandy typos.
    Thanks. :)

  55. Jandy says:

    Milo, you said it all. Sound familiar?

  56. Jandy says:

    thanks for the link, Scott, good stuff, to be sure!

  57. Jandy says:

    haha I’ve been doing Jandy typos all morning.

  58. Milo Hamilton says:

    Yep. We talked about this very thing right here last summer. Let’s keep the same team that was clearly not good enough & go with that. And I include the coach in that statement.

  59. theplanisworking says:

    Ok, since we all know the coach and GM arent going to be fired, what should the team do?

    Shero must have confidence in the way things are going, or he would do something different.

    It should have been obvious that a shakeup was necessary after last years debacle in Boston……… but nothing happened. So what should be done, outside of firing the coach and GM?

    Pens are up against the cap, have many players hurt…… I dont see the needed fixes coming.
    Just my 1 cent……..

  60. Drewmeister,

    Made me laugh loudly!

  61. Pucknutz says:

    LOL Monster – re: Blogmother heebie jeebies – I posted this couple days ago – lol that someone else got the chills also !!!!

    BLOGMOTHER – Wow, gotta write that one down – sounds scary and cool at the same time!!!!
    I am flashing grade school pics in my head of the Mother Superior that even Sister Mary Mean chilled a bit when she entered the classroom. Scary and cool all at once!

    I got no idea where this one is going to end up on the page….

  62. Drew71 says:

    You may be right. History is on your side. But if you mean reload to their recent level of dominance, I don’t think so.

    I don’t suggest they are turning into the American. Just that Alabama’s recent excellence has masked that the SEC is about to drop down to the level of the other couple of very good but not dominant conferences.

    I think the SEC will be very good for years. But that is the only conference for which being very good for years is a solid step back.

  63. Rich Papp says:

    Very excited to be able to watch a world cup game down there that would be great. Good to see my sport catching on finally here.

  64. Jandy says:

    LOL Puckers! Actually Brandie started that nickname….it’s kinda cool! 8)

  65. Drew71 says:

    Though it is fair to acknowledge that the four team playoff could treat a very-good-but-not-dominant conference better than the current two team playoff.

    For instance. If:
    - the four team playoff began THIS year, and
    - Auburn or Missouri won out through the SEC championship game…in other words, one of these one loss teams beats Alabama and doesn’t lose somewhere else…

    …that team would make the four team playoff as the third seed.

    And a very-good-not-dominant conference with solid, top to bottom computer power rankings could place TWO different one loss teams in a four team playoff. No wonder the SEC was so over-the-top in favor of the new format.

    All that said. I think the days of the SEC having a top of the heap, absolute dominant team are over for now. I think the rising PAC-ACC and now equalized SEC will share the thrown.

    My point is not fading quality. Just fading dominance.

  66. Wild Bill says:

    Big predictions, Drew.

    Number three depends on Winston being there to play qb, doesn’t it? That’s not fully guaranteed at this moment.

  67. Dude,

    Davidson——picked to win the Southern Conference——played in March Madness last season
    UNC Asheville——picked to win their conference——played in March Madness 2 of last 3 years
    East Carolina——beat UNC already this year
    Vermont——picked to win their conference——played in March Madness 2 of last 4 years

    Elon and Gardner-Webb——local North Carolina schools like Duquesne and/or Robert Morris on schedule

    Oh Yeah, let’s not forget #2 Kansas in Chicago.
    Let’s not forget Alabama tonight in Madison Square
    Let’s not forget #3 Arizona Friday night in Madison Square
    Let’s not forget Top 10 Michigan next Tuesday
    Let’s not forget UCLA in Brooklyn later in December

    Comparing Pitt’s lollipop schedule to Duke’s is like comparing a peanut to the Great Pumpkin!!!!!!!
    You’re walking in a mine field here.

    DK: Groat rules.

  68. Wild Bill says:

    Sorry. that was the 2nd one.

  69. hockeymonster says:

    :)

  70. Drew71 says:

    Didn’t you see the Steriod Stewie episode, Jandy?

  71. Wild Bill says:

    That snuck up on me. He looks five years younger than that.

  72. Drew71 says:

    My dream had always been to be Charlie Harper.

    Alas, EYE am Stewie.

  73. hockeymonster says:

    I like how we’re playing now. Would just try to fix bottom 6. Patience…I’m sure shero is working the phones.

  74. Mike A. says:

    In general, I agree with your premise. This team is missing “something”. But, going against my pessimistic nature, I will remind everyone that it is still only November. However this team performs, for good or for bad, between now and April is generally irrelevant. Only the playoffs matter. I will caution, however, that in the playoffs, there will be no games against Columbus, Carolina or Buffalo to fatten up against.

  75. Jandy says:

    I musta missed that one, Drew….sorry :/

  76. Drew71 says:

    Right on both counts.

    I am predicting based on current circumstances.

  77. Jandy says:

    Playing better…but man, it’s still dysfunctional…

  78. Drew71 says:

    Thanks, Groat. I’ll start focusing after the BCS Championship Game.

    Or after the Pirates trade for Price or Scherzer.

    Whichever comes first.

  79. Milo Hamilton says:

    Problem is, when you continually sign guys in their mid 30′s to multi year no trade contracts it really limits your options.

  80. Wild Bill says:

    It’s an interesting argument from Madden. Here’s the thing: Mario is not an owner who doesn’t know hockey, and Shero doesn’t seem to me to be dumb. If the Pens continue to fail the eyeball test of those two, something will change, and it could be very big when it happens.

  81. hockeymonster says:

    Depth has always been my concern post staal, tk, and Cooke. Still is but they’re playing to their strengths now. Fix bottom 6 and our chances are as good as anyone’s. But who’s available? Wish i knew…

  82. Mike A. says:

    Hope he doesn’t get injured blowing out his candles. Beau is beginning to remind me of the leg lamp in “A Christmas Story”….Fra Geel Lay. And I don’t even think he’s Italian.

  83. 21sthebest says:

    Good post.

  84. Wild Bill says:

    This is a strange time. The Steelers have a huge game tomorrow night against their most hated rival, and unless I missed something, not one comment on the blog today about that game.

    The Steelers can win this one, imo. Be ready for the deep pass, and cover Rice out of the backfield.

    Anybody out there excited at all?? Or are we all hoping for draft picks still?

  85. hockeymonster says:

    Don’t disagree bout age situation but don’t think we’d trade kuni or duper or piece that easily anyway. And until we know who’s available kinda hard to gauge who’s expendable.

  86. Wild Bill says:

    My bad. The very first comment, by DJ, was Steelers related.

  87. 21sthebest says:

    I’ve hardly watched local news for several years. But I had to turn it on last night. I love the reporter on the scene in these weather events. “The precipitation is making the roads wet……here comes a salt truck…..”

  88. Thundercrack says:

    I am waiting for the bold-type response

  89. Milo Hamilton says:

    Everyone’s expendable except for Sid. But 10 guys on their roster have at least a limited no trade clause. Insane.

  90. Milo Hamilton says:

    I see where the Nationals asked the city of Washington to build & pay for a retractable roof over almost brand new Nationals Park. The Mayor said no. Better be careful, they might move to the suburbs of Atlanta.

  91. Drew71 says:

    Down here, they hire Weather Bimbettes.

    So I don’t really listen to what they say.

  92. theplanisworking says:

    Groat:

    if you would have read my post, which is obvious that you didnt, you would have seen the following statement in there……

    “schools like Duke, Kentucky, Michigan State, they do the tournaments with other strong schools in the preseason.”
    That would cover the Kansas, Alabama, Arizona, etc…….

    As for Davidson, UNC Asheville, Vermont, etc, so you are saying that just because a school is favored to win their conference, no matter how crappy the conference may be, they are a strong opponent?? Ok, so if Robert Morris is picked to win their conference, they become a strong opponent?

    Again, if you would have read my post, which you couldnt have, my point wasnt to excuse Pitt’s schedule. It was to show that all major D-1 schools pad their schedule. I am not walking in any minefield here. They have creme puffs also, but I know you dont want to admit that.

    Guess I am sorry to have engaged you in a conversation.

    Dude.

  93. Damon says:

    Paul Martin has a fractured leg, out 4-6 weeks…

  94. theplanisworking says:

    Will there be enough players left?

  95. Milo Hamilton says:

    Fibula ?

  96. Damon says:

    tibia I think

  97. Damon says:

    Guess that’s why they called up three more (Megna, Despres and Conner). Ebbett is still up too.

  98. Milo Hamilton says:

    I was trying to be “optimistic”. :)

  99. Jandy says:

    Oh. My. God

  100. Milo Hamilton says:

    Hey Biz, just got confirmation. It’s Wednesday.

  101. Jandy says:

    Mario was part of the receiving end of a huge Country Club Atmosphere himself. He helped to create it as a player.

  102. theplanisworking says:

    One man’s view of the AFC playoff picture amongst the teams trying to qualify…..

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/nfl/news/20131126/afc-wild-card-pittsburgh-steelers-san-diego-chargers/?eref=sihp

  103. Jandy says:

    yeah, but by now, it’s beginning to look like the whole friggin team is fragile.
    And they’re multi-national ;)

  104. Jandy says:

    LOL Wild One, Beau looks like he’s about 16

  105. JRay3 says:

    Groat,

    I respect that you do not care for Pitt’s OOC schedule, I however see no problem with it. Jamie Dixon schedules in the same manner MANY not all, power schools do. Look at Jim Boeheim of Syracuse, he never leaves upstate NY, but will play a neutral court tournament.

    Every year Pitt elects to play in a pre-season tournament this year the Legends next year it will be the Maui Invitational.

    Every Year Pitt plays in a Big East/SEC challenge or ACC/Big Ten Challenge type game.

    Every Year Pitt tries to play in NY at a Coaches vs Cancer, NIT or Jimmy V type arrangement. This year that game is versus Cincinnati.

    There alone is 4-5 games of the 13 OOC games Pitt plays each year against high level BCS type programs. So that leaves just 8-9 other games and 2-3 of those are Duquesne, Robert Morris and some local schools.

    Jamie Dixon has earned a #1 seed twice, has earned a Top 5 seed five times In Dixon’s tenure. He too tries to schedule teams that are predicted to finish near or at the top of their conference as he gets RPI and how to best accomodate that.

    Like I said the other day a few years ago, CBS tried to schedule a two year home and home series between Duke and Pitt and Duke would not play it. It takes two sides to tango.

    I agree that each year Pitt should look to add a home and home type opponent to its mix but does not have to do much more when you play in a power conference and are facing some of the top teams in the country all through January and February.

    Once again I respect that you may not like their OOC schedule, but to think Pitt is the only power team in this boat is inaccurate, and with as many Big East titles Dixon has captured in both the regular season and tournament to his resume, it does not appear his scheduling hurts his teams.

  106. Arriba Wilver says:

    +1

  107. Jandy says:

    it’s hard to say if he’ll play….but I for one sure hope so!

  108. Damon says:

    ESPN also ranks the Steelers as having the best odds to get the 6th spot…

    No. 6 – Pittsburgh Steelers

    Current record: 5-6 | Weighted DVOA: 3.4 percent
    Projected wins: 7.9
    Total playoff odds: 38.0 percent | Weekly change: +18.3 percent

    Thanks to a three-game winning streak, the Steelers have seen their playoff odds increase six-fold over the past two weeks (from 6.8 percent after Week 10), which is good enough to vault them into the final AFC playoff spot in our simulations. At 28.4 percent, however, it’s nowhere near a stranglehold. What gives Pittsburgh a slight edge right now is that it’s the only team with a positive weighted DVOA among the six vying for the No. 6 seed. What makes the Steelers’ edge tenuous is that, while our simulations view them as a projected favorite in three of their final five games, they view San Diego as a favorite in four games.

    All this optimism worries me for some reason…

  109. JRay3 says:

    Plan,

    You are correct a lot of power teams schedule the same way. Take a look at #8 Syracuse and historic non-scheduler Jim Boeheim.

    Outside of the Maui Invitational and the ACC/Big Ten challenge they play:

    Cornell, Fordham, Colgate, Binghamton, High Point, Eastern Michigan, and do throw in a game with Villanova.

    #4 Arizona led by Sean Miller play an OOC schedule that looks like this:

    Cal Poly, Long Beach, SD ST, Farleigh Dickinson, Rhode Island, Drexel, New Mexico St, UNLV, Southern and Northern Arizona. Their BEST game is against Michigan.

    Don’t see all that much difference in Pitt’s schedule against some Top 10 teams in the country.

  110. theplanisworking says:

    Good Post, JRay3.

    You added more depth than mine, but no one on here was ever defending Pitt’s OoC schedule, and very few teams schedule a murderer’s row of opponents. That is what the game in conference do.

    Oh, and I dont know if you saw this in last nights thread, but I enjoy your games recaps for PItt as much as you doing the game recaps for the Pirates.

  111. theplanisworking says:

    And, let us not forget the number of coahces that Mr. LeMieux helped get fired.
    Including the greatest hockey coach of all-time, Mr. Scotty Bowman.

  112. JRay3 says:

    Did not, thanks.

  113. JRay3 says:

    One correction Arizona does play in a pre-season tournament that was not on their schedule and will most likely get a game with Duke as well.

  114. Arriba Wilver says:

    +1

  115. theplanisworking says:

    Agreed.

    All you quoted there wont amount to a hill of beans if the Steelers dont win tomorrow night.

  116. Jandy says:

    did too :P

    ;)

  117. Arriba Wilver says:

    Huh?

  118. NMR says:

    +1

    It’s Washington. Make up some hooey about terrorism and get the Feds to cut the check.

  119. Arriba Wilver says:

    I noticed your recognition of Rohrssen last night. I saw him during the game, and thought “didn’t he leave? ”

    Thanks for the confirmation I wasn’t seeing things, and I agree, it’s good to see him back.

  120. theplanisworking says:

    Thanks, JRay.

    Good to see I am not losing ALL my marbles…..

  121. Arriba Wilver says:

    +1

  122. theplanisworking says:

    I believe Rohrssen coming back will help the recruiting so so much.
    ( If Duke doesnt get all the good ones). ;)

  123. theplanisworking says:

    Um, coaches.

    Too much tryptophan or something………

  124. Bizrow says:

    Thanks Milo, that used to be the third day of the work week?? ;-)

  125. Damon says:

    Pens lines at practice:

    Kunitz-Crosby-Dupuis
    Jokinen-Malkin-Neal
    Conner-Sutter-Ebbett
    Adams-Vitale-Megna

    Orpik-Letang
    Maatta-Engelland
    Despres-Niskanen-Bortuzzo

    I’m starting to feel bad for Sutter. I’d rather have Magna on the 3rd line, Engelland on the 4th, and Conner on the bench.

  126. Jandy says:

    or something ;)

  127. Jandy says:

    :thwap:

  128. Jandy says:

    LOL Damon, I was thinking the same thing.
    And what’s with Conner? Switching one hobbit for another…sheesh!

  129. toochca says:

    Maybe Montreal can take advantage of this, build a new stadium and get them to move there!! ;)

  130. Drew71 says:

    And yes, Milo. I sometimes dread my wife, too.

  131. hockeymonster says:

    Wow just checked in and seeing a lot of pessimism bout pens. I say sit back n enjoy the show cuz our offense is about to break out in a big way. Not sure if we’ll light it up tonight but I’m telling u guys that pretty soon the circus will be coming to town.

    And the way we’re playing now minding the neutral zone and moving puck as a unit I don’t think comparing this season to previous seasons is wise. Like I said sit back n enjoy cuz the monster mash is coming soon.

  132. Jandy says:

    Dejan, whatever do you mean by Groat rules?

    That’s puzzling.

  133. Jandy says:

    haha love that last line ;)

  134. hockeymonster says:

    Was just for you ;)

  135. Damon says:

    You have to see this picture on the Pens website – scroll down and see the picture of Conner next to Bortuzzo…funny…

    http://penguins.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=693259&navid=DL|PIT|home

  136. Jandy says:

    not that I expect an answer …

  137. Jandy says:

    I feel honored :D

  138. Jandy says:

    Really tho, I see what you’re saying about the puck movement…but man, those two bottom lines…YIKES! And there’s not bee much time for any “bonding”. I’m honestly expecting to lose tonight…Toronto’s been pretty good lately, though they did lose Lupul with groin injury…

  139. Bizrow says:

    I don’t know about the Pens, am getting a bit worried with all the injuries

  140. Jandy says:

    Haha, that’s why I said what’s with exchanging one hobbit for another!

  141. Damon says:

    You know, my initial thought when I saw this article was – Noooooo (see link below)…. BUT, if Fleury would get playoff-like experience playing for the gold medal at Sochi and possibly get the monkey off his back before the Pens get into the playoffs – awesome. If he screws up Team Canada’s chances by choking, OK…Team USA may benefit, and then you know you need to get a backup goalie for the run….

    http://thehockeywriters.com/marc-andre-fleury-team-canada/

  142. Jandy says:

    Biz, you said a mouth full there…its’ concerning.

  143. Bad kitty. Talking bad about soccer.

  144. Damon says:

    Toronto makes me nervous because they ALWAYS play well against the Pens…especially in Pittsburgh. MAF needs to be big….if not, maybe a 7-6 game is what they need like last year against the Canadians.

  145. Jandy says:

    Interesting, but I still don’t see him making it…

  146. hockeymonster says:

    Injuries are a concern but despres, megna and connor are good to go…add a lil adrenaline and they’ll be fine…for now.

  147. Jandy says:

    You have it pegged, Damon, the Leafs DO play hard against us, especially at our place. Here’s hopin we get a few lucky bounces.

  148. Jandy says:

    Connor doesn’t excite me…never did, never will lol. Megan, well, it will be good to have him back. I love his speed and his shot.

  149. Jandy says:

    UGH darn jandy Typos Megna…not Megan…he’d slap me lol

  150. Damon says:

    I don’t think so either – I think Canadians might revolt if they picked Fleury as the Team Canada goalie – but if somehow they did, I am becoming OK with the idea. If he isn’t on the team, OK he gets rest. If he is, see above….

  151. hockeymonster says:

    Connor for stretches of time is good. He just wears out a bit.

  152. Jandy says:

    Hopefully Kobasew is back soon. I thought he was about ready?

  153. Danimal says:

    These past 2 wins are not really as impressive as some are making them out to be. Texas Tech and Stanford were not even in the NCAA tournament last year, so lets not kid ourselves about the actual talent level of these teams. While I’ll admit they are better teams than the typical McNeese St.’s we are accustomed to them playing this time of year, they are far from elite status in the ACC as some would infer. I’ll wait until conference play to begin before making any conclusions about this team.

  154. Jandy says:

    I see D’Agostini was claimed off waivers by Buffalo…

  155. Seems like the same injury bughas bitten the Pens as the one that plagues the Steelers. Hope they can vaccinate against it before baseball season.

  156. theplanisworking says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Reverend.

  157. Dom says:

    I’m thinking it will be the Ravens.

  158. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    You’re exactly right, and unfortunately, I don’t see a win in Baltimore on Thursday eve.
    These two teams almost always split the season series unless one of them is a dominant team.
    That is not the case in 2013.
    I won’t say a win is completely out, but I count on it very little.

    It’s nice to see Tomlin and some of the players bounce back as the season has proceeded.
    However, I feel like this is still a sub .500 team.
    If they finish over .500, it’s probably going to create more problems for next year because of where they will draft.

  159. 21sthebest says:

    I expect a Steelers victory.

  160. Drew71 says:

    Walmart Holiday Spirit.

    Shopping cart aisle rage.

    Trust me.

  161. Jandy says:

    For those who may not be on later, have a happy, blessed Thanksgiving Day.

  162. JRay3 says:

    Agree that Stanford and Texas Tech may not be elite, although Stanford will be a fringe bubble team this year to make the NCAA’s.

    I think the impressive part is winning the games by 23 and 21 respectively, totally dominating performances from start to finish the whole 40 minutes.

    Can tell you this, the Sagarin Index now rates the Panthers #5, Pomeroy #2 as Pitt runs the 6th most efficient offense in the country to this point (no surprise they have always been very efficient but this year they have shooters) and the 13th most efficient defense.

    Pitt will have probably just one “true” test before conference play and that will be against Cincinnati, as the Panthers should dismantle Penn St.

    Pitt good be looking at 13-0 headed into league play and will be easily favored in their first 4 ACC games- NC St, Maryland, Georgia Tech and Wake Forest before a huge tilt Jan. 18th at Syracuse.

    The eye test shows quite a bit with this team, level of opponent or not.

  163. Bizrow says:

    Ditto from this neck of the woods

  164. Barb says:

    I will be on tonight’s Pens blog but wanted to say to all my friends here….Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

    DK: You, too, Barb. Looking forward to having you here tonight!

  165. Jandy says:

    Funny you say that, Drew. The Walmart I go to is usually a much better atmosphere than most of the Walmarts. it’s a super store, but it’s still a bit smaller than most. The people are also much more courteous and friendly.
    But…
    I wouldn’t dream of going there Black Friday. And honestly, I got all my food and stuff for Thanksgiving on Sunday. No way I wanna be in a grocery store or a Walmart tonight or Black Friday.

  166. Goodness!!! My post at 9:58 was extraordinarily complimentary of Pitt and its performance the last two games. And it’s turned into “My Dad can beat up your Dad!”

    I have in the past, and will continue to talk disparagingly of Pitt’s weak out of conference schedule. I don’t think it helps Pitt. On these pages in the past, I have also talked poorly of Boeheim’s early schedule, where he does not leave New York until January. I do not think his teams are prepared to face tournament-tested teams at the end of the year. I don’t think Pitt’s team is.

    I found it ironic that you cite Pitt’s #1 seeds, yet fail to mention their poor NCAA performances. How many straight years have they lost to lower seeds? In the NCAAs and in the Big East?

    Duke tries to schedule teams projected to win their conferences . . . . . the very same teams they will or might face in the first two rounds of the NCAAs.

    I’m not trying to bust on Pitt here. I lauded them above! I only got into specifics about scheduling when it was said above that the schedules were similar. They are NOT EVEN CLOSE TO BEING SIMILAR!

    Johnny Ray III, take another look at that Arizona schedule: San Diego State, UNLV, Long Beach State, Drexel, Rhode Island (with their new coach Danny Hurley), Michigan, DUKE———there’s no way you can compare that schedule to the one Pitt has!

    I like Pitt! I follow them closely! They are the home team I root for!

    Don’t be so rabbit-eared that all you hear is my justified criticism of their out of conference early schedule. Don’t be so rabbit-eared that you defend an obvious weakness in the Pitt program, that may keep it from being even better.

    I hope Pitt makes the National Championship Game, where it loses to DUKE!!!

  167. JAL says:

    Certainly not good two deaths, an injury and a stadium that needs rebuilt.

  168. Johnny Ray III,

    Just for your info, the North Carolina media reported that Duke wanted to play Pitt in New Jersey in Brynden Byrne Arena, but Pitt would not play in the week time frame (between Christmas and New Year) that Duke needed for the rest of its schedule.

    Duke wanted to play——Pitt wouldn’t. Pitt wanted to play——Duke couldn’t. Depends on who you talk to, I guess.

  169. theplanisworking says:

    JAL,

    there seems to be a correlation between these huge cranes, big stadiums, and people dying.

    Seattle, Milwaukee, Dallas, now Sao Paolo.
    When will people learn?

  170. theplanisworking says:

    ++++++++++++

    Happy Thanksgiving, JRay.

  171. hockeymonster says:

    So D’agastini got claimed i see…not sure if he got enough of a shot but he definitely didnt make it a hard enough decision. I think he would’ve been better with a center that could hold the puck and buy him some time but he’s still a good player. Too bad it didnt work out. Should be a good one tonight…

    Happy Thanksgiving to all!!!

  172. Pucknutz says:

    Hey DK, drop the puck- Pens thread ???????

  173. Bizrow says:

    Dejan is on a date

    Years and years ago, we would always go to the Night before Thanksgiving game.

    You could actually go down and get tickets right before game time

    Great memories, eat on Smithfield St, and walk up

  174. Jandy says:

    If barb would ask, we might get a thread ;)

  175. Jandy says:

    to you too, Monster Mash

  176. Milo Hamilton says:

    He’s at the game. Maybe someone could remind him on twitter. Man loves his twitter. :)

  177. Jandy says:

    Since I’m not a Twit, I can’t remind him lol

  178. Jandy says:

    Nice. I’m sitting here complaining about Conner and he scores lol

  179. Brandie says:

    Seems kind of strange without a hockey thread. The hamster who runs on the wheel to generate the threads must be on strike! :-)

  180. Jandy says:

    So now Dejan is a hampster? Lol. Hope he’s a cool one like the ones that drive the Kia Soul!

  181. Milo Hamilton says:

    Simon Despres stinks.

  182. theplanisworking says:

    Oh yeah? ;)

  183. Milo Hamilton says:

    The minor league soccer team gets a thread. (That should do it.)

  184. Brandie says:

    Way to expedite Milo…way to expedite!

  185. Jandy says:

    Ha! Half the Pens’ team is minor league tonight

  186. Jandy says:

    Ha! Half the Pens’ team is minor league tonight

  187. Jandy says:

    He’s doing well in WBS. That call was BS. That said, I’d love to know what Borts did to p*ss off Bylsma

  188. theplanisworking says:

    That was to Jandy.
    Twits and all………..

  189. Pucknutz says:

    LOL ;)

  190. Milo Hamilton says:

    Only 4 players out there for that goal. Someone remind Maata when it’s his turn he’s actually supposed to go out there.

  191. Jandy says:

    Haha Hipposter! I’m many things, but not a Twit.:P

  192. theplanisworking says:

    Mother Twit-resa? ;)

  193. Jandy says:

    Nope. Told ya, I don’t tweet so I’m not a twit

  194. theplanisworking says:

    Not enough StarYucks.

  195. Barb says:

    Okay I finally figured out that this is the Pens blog. DUH. So what the heck is happening?!?!?!?

  196. hockeymonster says:

    Just saw we outshot them 17-10 and we’re down a goal…Sun will probably rise tomorrow morning too…

  197. Jandy says:

    And it’s snowing here right now

  198. Barb says:

    Okay. Well I see we are already missing Paul Martin.

  199. Jandy says:

    Looks like SOS Barb lol (that’s not the call for help SOS)

  200. Bizrow says:

    And its only November

    Remember that with the snow

    And the Pens

    And the Buccos ;-)

  201. Bizrow says:

    I don’t remember a season where both the Pens and the Stillers have gone thru so much injuries.

    Of course, I don’t remember what day it is anymore

  202. Jandy says:

    Indeed

  203. Barb says:

    DANG IT! They need to WAKE UP!!!!! SHEESH!

  204. Jandy says:

    There you go rubbing it in again! :P

  205. hockeymonster says:

    1st goals softies too? Didn’t see them.

  206. Milo Hamilton says:

    Letang should buy a ticket.

  207. hockeymonster says:

    Ok letang is now on the list

  208. Barb says:

    4+1 bad guys. Way to take the crowd out of the game guys!

  209. Barb says:

    He’s been on the list. Just ask Sarah.

  210. DJ says:

    Quality play by Letang once again.

    I guess it trickled out today that some part of his body was ailing (knee?). Given his play, I was wondering when I was going to hear something like that.

  211. Bizrow says:

    Dejan should have gone to a movie

  212. Milo Hamilton says:

    I’m officially done defending this mess.

  213. Jandy says:

    This is getting beyond ridiculous.

  214. Barb says:

    Milo there is no defense for this. Blech.

  215. Jandy says:

    I HATE snow.

  216. Barb says:

    The NCIS marathon on USA is more entertaining than this hot mess.

  217. hockeymonster says:

    Oh I’m aware of Sarah’s position. Won’t be defending tanger that much anymore.

  218. theplanisworking says:

    I left for 8 minutes and Pens down 4-1.
    But all is well.
    This is what Shero and Bylsma want.
    No changes needed, stay the course.

    I feel bad for the players that ARE trying.

    Everyone have a great Thanksgiving. I hope all of you enjoy family, and remember those who dont get a Thanksgiving…… our troops. I aslo hope nobody patronizes stores who open tomorrow, depriving their employees Thanksgiving with their families.

    Biz, its the day before Thanksgiving, if that helps.
    Good Night.

  219. Barb says:

    Alright GENO. A PP goal to boot.

  220. Jandy says:

    well now.

  221. Milo Hamilton says:

    Randy Carlyle looks like he just swallowed rat poison. Of course, Randy Carlyle always looks like he swallowed rat poison.

  222. Jandy says:

    He looks better than bitter beer face Sutter ;)

  223. DJ says:

    Yeah, HM, time for you to jump on board.

  224. Jandy says:

    where the heck ya goin Hipposter???

  225. Jandy says:

    ok someone tell me how and why Phaneuf is allowed to do that to such an extent and get away with it??? friggin azzmunch refs!

  226. hockeymonster says:

    His mistakes are so obvious n fixable. Move your feet then move the puck quicker then move your feet again.

  227. Milo Hamilton says:

    Hope you all had the over.

  228. Barb says:

    Yes KUNIE….another PP goal.

  229. Jandy says:

    woop woop!

  230. DJ says:

    Letang actually puts a low puck on net and good things happen.

    Remember the date.

  231. hockeymonster says:

    Unreal…disco stretch costing us again.

  232. hockeymonster says:

    Just saw more useless stretch passes in 2nd then last few games combined. I think disco is addicted and was suffering from withdrawal. Time for intervention again…

  233. DJ says:

    Horrible pass by Orpik trying to squeeze it up the boards . . . turnover . . . goal.

  234. Milo Hamilton says:

    Here’s the official word on the disallowed goal.

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/blog.htm?id=2165

  235. DJ says:

    Horrible pass by Orpik trying to squeeze it up the boards . . . turnover . . . goal.

    Said it before so I’ll repeat. Time to move on this year when his contract ends. If Shero even thinks about a one year deal for him we’re doomed.

  236. DJ says:

    Orpik’s blunder, but yes, sanctioned by HCDB’s “system.”

  237. DJ says:

    Proper call.

  238. Milo Hamilton says:

    With Conner at 5-8 & Ebbett at 5-9, looks like Pens are making recalls from the Lullaby League.

  239. hockeymonster says:

    No puck support for orpik there.

  240. Jandy says:

    Hobbits

  241. Milo Hamilton says:

    “… and in the name of The Lullaby League, we wish to welcome you to Munchkin Land.”

    And they insist on playing Engelland on defense.

  242. DJ says:

    Lost in the horrible play by Fleury behind his own net, the failure of Letang to move toward Fleury’s pass instead of waiting for it, the fact Letang then got outmuscled by JVR to get the goal, is the fact Sid lost the center ice face-off to start the 2nd period.

    Missed the 1st period so I don’t have his stats, but Sid got his lunch eaten by Bergeron in Boston. For whatever reason, Sid has just not been Sid lately in that phase.

  243. DJ says:

    Orpik should have just held it, HM. No one was even close to him at the time.

    Rag the puck and then wait for an opening. That simple.

  244. Milo Hamilton says:

    Sid is 13 for 19 tonight. But you’re right about the other night.

  245. Jandy says:

    I love dirty goals

  246. Milo Hamilton says:

    Chances the Leafs are through scoring ?

  247. Jandy says:

    slim to none

  248. hockeymonster says:

    But disco is going north…

  249. Milo Hamilton says:

    OK, we need 2 !

  250. hockeymonster says:

    Can jandster get a woop woop?

  251. Jandy says:

    Jandster will give woop woops if Pens score!

  252. DJ says:

    So Malkin only has like 6 goals, right?

    Time to trade him.

  253. Jandy says:

    OK…how the he^^ did they NOT score smh

  254. Eric Bowser says:

    Since there’s no Penguins thread… this game doesn’t count…..

  255. DJ says:

    We’ve hijacked this one and made this the hockey thread.

    And we’re not moving for no one.

  256. Barb says:

    Wow I do a few things for dinner tomorrow and we have managed to tie the game.

  257. Jandy says:

    hahaha!

  258. Jandy says:

    I can’t believe they’ve blown all these chances…

  259. Eric Bowser says:

    If this was a Pirates game… there would be a thread…. (reversing the Pirates fan whining trend)…. LOL

  260. Milo Hamilton says:

    Leafs have no shots this period. Zatkoff looking strong. :)

  261. Milo Hamilton says:

    When we were in high school, we called Carlyle “Porky”.

  262. hockeymonster says:

    Don’t yell at me :)

    And at the time they did score.

  263. Jandy says:

    Believe me, if I had yelled, you’d know it ;)
    lol

  264. DJ says:

    For whatever the call-ups may lack in finishing skill they’re all working hard.

    Nice to see.

  265. hockeymonster says:

    He earn that nickname the hard way?

  266. DJ says:

    We cannot, simply CANNOT lose this one in regulation.

  267. DJ says:

    Who’s this new kid, Depres?

    He looks pretty good.

  268. Milo Hamilton says:

    No 3rd period shots for Toronto.

  269. Jandy says:

    attitude adjustments work wonders

  270. Thundercrack says:

    Sensitive hockey fan

    :-)

  271. Jandy says:

    Can someone please knock Phaneuf into next season?

  272. DJ says:

    Yes, I think this coaching staff forgot what a swift kick in the arse can do on the proper occasion.

  273. Milo Hamilton says:

    The Leafs registered their last shot at 19:55 of the 2nd period. Any way to hold them without a shot in the shootout ?

  274. Barb says:

    My sentiments exactly.

  275. Milo Hamilton says:

    I fear Zatkoff is rusty !

  276. hockeymonster says:

    Fewer stretches passes in 3rd led to more possession and no shots allowed. Coincidence? Definitely not. Definite pattern at this point.

    Disco stretch = fewer goals and more turnovers

  277. hockeymonster says:

    I sounded like a drunken sailor in the 3rd cuz of phaneuf

  278. Jandy says:

    well that’s 2

  279. Jandy says:

    Oh. My. God/ Zats beats Bernier in SO…wow…

  280. Milo Hamilton says:

    Well, there are 2 points they didn’t deserve. But hey, I was entertained.

  281. DJ says:

    AWESOME ! ! !

  282. Barb says:

    What a wild and woolly end to a wild and woolly game. Happy Thanksgiving all. Don’t eat too much turkey!

  283. Eric Bowser says:

    Welcome back Malkin

    3 Stars:
    3 – Malkin
    2 – Malkin
    1 – Malkin

    WOOOO

  284. DJ says:

    He never left, IMO.

    Awesome performance.

  285. Jandy says:

    Another … punishment for Letang…he didn’t get to shoot in the shootout…

  286. Eric Bowser says:

    The Malkin that was out there tonight hasn’t been seen since Carolina playoff series in 2009.

  287. Jandy says:

    Much more visible tonight.

  288. Jandy says:

    Maybe they didn’t deserve them after the first, Milo, but they sure did after the third…

    DK: Ugh! Why didn’t anyone TELL me I forgot to put the game post up?

  289. Jandy says:

    Indeed, Barb!

  290. DJ says:

    Good point, Jandy. I’m sure he was going to be 4th if it came to that.

    And speaking of Letang, on the Neal blast from the right dot, Malkin first went left to Letang on the left dot immediately before that goal. Letang’s one-timer missed the net by 8 feet . . . from the left dot for god’s sake. That result is why we always see Letang settling the puck. It’s a major deficiency in his game.

    He should sacrifice one month each summer from his renown conditioning training and have a coach feed him 100 cross-ice passes per day to practice that one particular skill.

  291. Jandy says:

    I totally agree. He’s gifted…but he still needs to work on his weaknesses.

  292. DJ says:

    Right, and we all saw what Neal did with an identical opportunity.

    You need to be humble enough to identify your own weaknesses before you can commit to improvement.

 
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