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Morning Java: Neverending climb

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia — Доброе утро, Lunatiks …

>> The Wednesday column challenges Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin to do better.

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The news coverage up here in the mountains focuses on Lauryn Williams’ suddenly strong bid to become only the second Olympian with gold in the Summer and Winter Games.

The hockey notebook looks at Dan Bylsma’s steady hand and other Penguins-related stuff on quarterfinal day.

Here are all 10 videos for Channel 11 News so far, including yesterday’s on the incredible nerve center of the Olympics …

I’m also doing weekday reports for TribLIVE Radio, and here’s yesterday’s edition interviewing Olli Maatta and Blake Wheeler about instant team-building.

Here’s the Trib’s Olympics page.

Here’s the official Sochi 2014 page, with all the schedules and results.

Here’s the official U.S. Olympic team page.

Here’s the official NHL Olympics page.

And here’s NBC’s Olympics page with all the highlights.

>> The climb to Sanki Sliding Center, home of bobsled, feels like it never stops.

The phenomenal topographical distance between Sochi’s coastal cluster, home of the ice sports, and up here in Krasnaya Polyana, home of the snow sports, is a peak elevation of 7,610 feet. Or 1.44 miles.

Think about that: It’s like rising elevation-wise from Los Angeles to Denver, then adding on another half-mile. Oh, and in the span of less than an hour.

Know how your ears pop driving up Grandview Avenue to Mount Washington in a matter of seconds?

Well, imagine the ears popping every minute or so for an hour straight on the winding, swirling bus ride, and you’ve got this experience down.

>> Back in that other hemisphere, Tony Sanchez continues to earn the Pirates’ trust behind the plate. Rob Biertempfel reports from Bradenton, and he uploads this video, as well …

Here’s the Trib’s Pirates page, including more on Francisco Liriano being named opening day starter.

>> Six players the Steelers will watch closely at the NFL combine, by Alan Robinson.

Here’s the Trib’s Steelers page.

>> This one’s worth a repeat: We have tons of great blogs at TribLIVE, all specializing in their respective sports. Encourage you strongly to check them out and bookmark.

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. BillyBaduka says:

    First? Nah, blog must be broken.

  2. Thundercrack says:

    A year ago, Francisco Liriano was an enigmatic mystery man trying to get healthy. Now, amazingly, he’s about to become the Pirates’ Opening Day starter. {Jayson Stark}

    One of the reasons you gotta love baseball. ( I guess this type of thing happens in all sports)

  3. JAL says:

    JAL’s Sweet Home Alabama Morning Links

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ye5BuYf8q4o

    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 BFFL’s 2014 Pirates Stats Spreadsheet

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AsjN0zO-DxI0dDNkaWxFNWIwNDVUQzEwYXp5SlpGNkE&usp=drive_web#gid=0

    4 Pirates Prospects Spring Training Tracker

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/st2014

    BLOGS and such

    5—Pirates Prospects

    First Pitch: A Glimpse at the Future

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2014/02/first-pitch-a-glimpse-at-the-future.html

    Jason Grilli throws off the mound; Josh Harrison has a girl

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2014/02/jason-grilli-throws-off-the-mound-josh-harrison-has-a-girl.html

    Draft Prospect Watch: Top-Heavy Draft For College Pitchers

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2014/02/draft-prospect-watch-top-heavy-draft-for-college-pitchers.html

    6 Bucs Dugout

    Francisco Liriano to start Opening Day

    http://www.bucsdugout.com/2014/2/18/5422966/francisco-liriano-to-start-opening-day

    7 Rumbunter

    Travis Snider Finger Saving Kitchen Utencil Gift Ideas

    http://rumbunter.com/2014/02/18/travis-snider-finger-saving-kitchen-utencil-gift-ideas/

    The Andrew Lambo Project Begins

    http://rumbunter.com/2014/02/18/andrew-lambo-project/

    8 Green Weenie

    No Snow In Bradenton…

    http://oldbucs.blogspot.com/2014/02/no-snow-in-bradenton.html

    9 City of Champions

    Pittsburgh Pirates Rumors: Bucs All But Out On Kendrys Morales

    http://cityofchampionssports.com/2014/02/18/pittsburgh-pirates-rumors-bucs-kendrys-morales/

    10 Saber Bucs

    A.J. in PNC vs. A.J. in Philly

    http://saberbucs.com/blog/2014/02/17/a-j-in-pnc-vs-a-j-in-philly/

    11 KDKA

    Despite Losing Burnett, Coonelly Says Bucs Will Be Better In 2014

    http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2014/02/18/despite-losing-burnett-coonelly-says-bucs-will-be-better-in-2014/

  4. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    12 Bradenton Herald

    Full-squad workouts begin in Bradenton for Pittsburgh Pirates

    http://www.bradenton.com/2014/02/18/4999503/full-squad-workouts-begin-in-bradenton.html

    Pittsburgh Pirates | Grilli still making most of closing time

    http://www.bradenton.com/2014/02/19/5001516/pittsburgh-pirates-grilli-still.html

    13 Beaver County Times

    Sanchez prepared to forgo Pirates’ 1B platoon

    http://www.timesonline.com/sports/pirates/sanchez-prepared-to-forgo-pirates-b-platoon/article_22cf98f5-46ce-549f-b466-11a2f04855ce.html

    14 Pirates Site

    Pirates hope Alvarez continues strides from October

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article/mlb/pittsburgh-pirates-hope-pedro-alvarez-continues-strides-from-october?ymd=20140218&content_id=67892460&vkey=news_mlb

    15 Rant Sports

    Pittsburgh Pirates 2014 Spring Training Profile: Edinson Volquez

    http://www.rantsports.com/mlb/2014/02/18/pittsburgh-pirates-2014-spring-training-profile-edinson-volquez/

    16 Fangraphs

    The Orioles Bet on the New Ubaldo Jimenez

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/the-orioles-bet-on-the-new-ubaldo-jimenez/

    17 ESPN

    Clint Hurdle’s message: The time is now

    http://espn.go.com/blog/spring-training/post/_/id/1334/1334

    18 St. Louis Post Gazette

    Strauss: Now it’s Cards’ turn to be heavy favorites

    http://www.stltoday.com/sports/columns/joe-strauss/strauss-now-it-s-cards-turn-to-be-heavy-favorites/article_71a1424b-1ad7-5bb5-b114-e6be50b7e6b6.html

    19 Baseball Prospectus

    Top Tools Best Hit/Power

    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=22854

    20 Lindy’s Sports

    Pirates’ McCutchen vows to build on MVP year

    http://lindyssports.com/mlb/pittsburgh-pirates/column/fantasy-news/pirates-mccutchen-vows-to-build-on-mvp-year/186188

  5. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    21 Behind the Steel Curtain

    Steelers seeing Ben Roethlisberger lead by example

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2014/2/18/5422330/roethlisberger-leads-by-example

    Steelers trades: Jerome Bettis deal one of the most lopsided in franchise history

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2014/2/18/5421748/steelers-trades-list-jerome-bettis-rams

    22 Steelers Depot

    Will the Steelers Start Playing Some Moneyball in the Near Future?

    http://www.steelersdepot.com/2014/02/will-the-steelers-start-playing-some-moneyball-in-the-near-future/

    Soccer(football)

    23 Bloomberg Stats Insight

    Football Dynamics: Bayern, Arsenal, Man City & Barcelona

    http://www.bsports.com/statsinsights/football/football-dynamics-bayern-arsenal-man-city-barcelona

    24 BBC Football

    Rene Meulensteen, Ray Wilkins and Alan Curbishley exit Fulham

    http://www.bbc.com/sport/0/football/26251769

    PENGUIN BLOGS and NHL Links

    25 Pensburgh

    Dan Bylsma Has Been Here Before (Tuesday Slew)

    http://www.pensburgh.com/2014/2/18/5423484/dan-bylsma-has-been-here-before-tuesday-slew

  6. Jandy says:

    +++

    Look at Olli Maatta’s story :)
    It does happen in all sports.

  7. It’s just like the Russians anymore. They detain and rough up members of the Pussy Riot band protesting corruption and anti gay laws in Russia while allowing a demonstration outside the American embassy by youthful pro Putin party members protesting the ref’s disallowing the goal that might’ve allowed Russia to beat the US in that preliminary hockey game.

  8. Jandy says:

    They better be careful or they might find themselves protesting in Siberia ;)

  9. Report from Pirate City and Spring Training:

    1/ LOTS of fielding drills of first full day of workouts. Different from last year, when all infielders took grounders at same field on first full day, Pedro, Jordy & Barmes, Walker, Gaby & Lambo stayed at one field and Matt Hague, Chase D’Arnaud, Martinez, and Travis Ishikauwa were sent to another field. Gaby was obviously giving instructions to Lambo between grounders. Lambo fielded grounders fine, but his footwook around the bag was less than stellar. He looks like he is playing “connect the dots” defense. I was here when Bucs were converting Jeff Clement to 1st Base, and Clement was much more fluid. Much, much more!

    2/ After Starting Pitchers were all done throwing bullpens, they (and catchers) came to this field with the starting infielders for bunt defense practice. Pitcher took stretch, then threw either to 1st or home (to make sure 1st basemen did not leave too soon), then coach threw down bunt to charging Pedro, Lambo or Gaby, and pitcher, while catcher shouted out base to throw to. This went on quite a while. Some lollipop throws, but only throws into center field were by Wandy and Lambo. Very next bunt after throwing into center, Lambo threw a 2-hopper to 2nd. He has a way to go!

    3/ Travis Snyder already nursing an injury——Rob B says it’s a cut finger, but Snyder started out doing the basic stretching exercises and running with the outfielders, then came over to the trainers, spoke to them, then stood with them during rest of running and stretching. Don’t know why a cut finger would keep him from running and rolling his shoulders and stretching his quads and hammies.

    4/ For fielders, always two groups——infielders and outfielders. When sprints were run at end, Jordy Mercer usually finished first in each drill; sometimes Barmes, once Neil Walker. Surprised one of younger guys like D’Arnaud or Hague would not try to shine here. Pedro always last. For outfielders, Marte always first, McCutch always last.

    5/ Fun to watch batting practice groups. Preset by coaches, 4 to a group. Travis Snyder must have originally been with McCutch, Marte, and Polanco——only group of just 3. Pedro did not BOMB the ball like last year but it was just one day. I loved how McCutch handled his hitting: his first 20 swings he went exclusively to right and right center. When he had that zeroed in and put 3 straight over the right center wall, then he started pulling the ball. And pull it he did, off the roof of the batting cage building and the roof of the dorms. No cheapies.

    6/ Know how this works: each group hits for quite a long time, while other 3 groups shag. Each hitter gets 6 swings, then next hitter steps in, then next, then next, then back to 1st hitter. That’s what made the McCutch/Marte/Polanco group so much fun . . . only three and more rounds. McCutch was the Bombing star, while Marte was the hitting star, hitting line drive after line drive into the gaps. He was most consistent of all, with a roof shot thrown in every once in a while. Polanco start out slowly. After McCutch started fencing the balls, left and right, then Polanco started hitting moon shots over the rightfield fence into the swamp there. B-I-G shots——the kid has power——but I would like to see the high fly balls go away and line drives over the fence or to the gaps like Marte and Cutch. Fun to watch though. His power shots were bigger than Pedro’s on this day!

    7/ After batting practice there against coach, groups immediately to another field where they hit against a pitching machine throwing nothing but curves. Marte was the star not only of his group but of every group I watched all day. He still hit almost nothing but line drives against curves. Jordy Mercer was the 2nd star, and Barmes 3rd. McCutch hit about two medium fly balls against curves (out of 30 swings) with the rest grounders to short or up the middle, or foul backs. Polanco did not get it out of the infield and kept ‘reaching’. On this day he could not hit the curve. Remember: They know curve coming! Lambo had the worst 5-swing set: 2 swings and misses (the only ones I saw), 3 foul backs. On Lambo’s regular batting practice against coach, he hit a lot of Major League infield popups. UGH!!

    8/ I watched Taillon and others throw bullpens, but they each threw only 25 pitches so there wasn’t much to see. No one was popping the ball very much, and no “stuff.” Grilli threw the ball the hardest, at least by sound, but he warmed up behind screen in 2nd bullpen, so you could only see his outline. Sounded good though and his form is unmistakable.

    IT’S TIME FOR BASEBALL, FOLKS!

  10. Wild Bill says:

    Oh boy. Frank has pronounced that the Bucs will be better this year despite losing A.J. We’re doomed.

    Had been wondering about the elevation change near Sochi when looking at those vista shots. D.K. has made it clear how dramatic the change is. The weather there has been ridiculous.

    I’m very concerned for the Ukraine the minute the Olympics are over.

  11. Hopefully, Papa Francisco will be ready to start against the Cubs when opening day comes round on March 31 at PNC Park.

  12. Wild Bill says:

    Thanks for the review, Groat!

  13. Jandy says:

    Good stuff, Groat! I enjoyed this :)

  14. Thundercrack says:

    Great stuff Groat!

  15. Thundercrack says:

    ‘Pedro always last.’

    My nomination for ‘topic most likely to be blown out of proportion on a sports blog during the next slow news day’

    :-)

  16. Thundercrack says:

    Who is Olli Maatta?

  17. pattonbb says:

    Great stuff, Groat! Much appreciated, as always.

  18. Jandy says:

    LOL! The 19 year old defenseman for the Penguins, silly Cracker ;)

  19. pattonbb says:

    Wonder how his hat looked?

  20. Jandy says:

    Selanne!

  21. You have likely also heard about outfielder Travis Snyder cutting his finger while in the kitchen paring sweet potatoes not long ago.

  22. DJ says:

    Only small gripe I have about Sid is that I would like to see him take the puck in deeper on goalies when he has a clear path to the goal mouth, something that Patrick Kane often does.

    Sid has such unbelievable hands and stick-handling abilities that I think it would benefit him.

  23. Arriba Wilver says:

    Great stuff, Groat. Thanks.

  24. theplanisworking says:

    +++++++

  25. theplanisworking says:

    Frank should NEVER speak. Unless ordering another round for everyone.

    I also fear for the Ukraine. It already is a mess…….. sure to get worse. Nobody seems to want to negotiate.

  26. Wild Bill says:

    Finns go up 3 – 1 with a pp goal. Russians curiously passive on the kill.

  27. KHL should sign more finns…

  28. kr70 says:

    nice job…get on the payroll

  29. Jandy says:

    Fins now up 3-1

  30. Wow…finns are gonna start shooting from everywhere now.

  31. Jandy says:

    Varlamov out, Bob in.

  32. Dom says:

    Personally, I’m rooting for Russia.

  33. Jandy says:

    I’m rooting for Ollie Maatta :)

  34. Jandy says:

    That place is a disaster…makes me cringe…

  35. olli olli olli oy oy oy

  36. Jim S. says:

    Thanks for the info., Groat. I really wanted to hear about Lambo at 1b defensively, so thanks for that. We know that 1b is a position that one can transition to during his career, but we also know it is a position that touches the ball more than just about all the others. If a guy can’t make the routine plays, he can’t stick there. I’m not trying to say Lambo can’t cut it there, but it sounds as though he has a long way to go in getting acclimated at 1b well enough to be able to stick there this year.

    I read some comments from Huntington yesterday to the effect that they continue to explore possible 1b upgrades of the lefty-hitting variety. We shall see.

    Enjoy the break from winter, Groat!

  37. Jim S. says:

    I predicted they would win this one. Doesn’t surprise me at all.

  38. Jim S. says:

    Go, Lauryn Williams!! I can’t imagine learning a new sport and being an Olympics favorite several months later. That’s pretty special. She’s living the dream. I hope she captures Gold!

  39. Jandy says:

    Russia on the PP

  40. Jandy says:

    Finland kills it

  41. Jandy says:

    She’s amazing. Tiny but mighty :)

  42. Jandy says:

    We’ll I’ll be darned, the sun is shining in Duncansville :)

  43. Jandy says:

    End of 2nd period. Finland 3, Russia 1

  44. Wild Bill says:

    Still having an ice storm in Snyder Co.

  45. Jandy says:

    Ice started here at 6am.

  46. Damon says:

    Just got a chance to check in – from what I heard Suomi looks good as a team, Ovi is choking and Geno has looked better in this game. Is this about right so far? I may get a chance to see some of the 3rd….

  47. Lad 9 says:

    Thank you Groat. After reading that, I can now hear the crack of the bat, feel the sun on my shoulders, and smell the freshly shorn diamond. Can’t wait!

  48. Thundercrack says:

    ‘silly Cracker’

    That’s a lot nicer than what Drew usually calls me.

  49. The Finns are leading the Russians at second period’s end 3-1. It’s been said that if the Russians are eliminated, it’ll be the worst Olympic defeat in Russian history, especially since they’ll be going home for the third straight year without a medal. Too bad.

  50. Excellent, Groaty. Thanks!

  51. Did you go to work or still have a “headache”?

    ;)

  52. Jandy says:

    LOL! I meant it in a nice way, tho :)

  53. Jandy says:

    Hey now, Revvie, I HAD a headache…didn’t make that up.
    I’m at work today, playing catch-up like a good girl

  54. Jandy says:

    Russia on the PP

  55. Don’t look now, but Predictocevic might have nailed it or come close. He picked the U.S., Canada and Finland to medal. Can’t remember which order, but I know he didn’t pick a U.S. gold, but a Canada one.

  56. Jandy says:

    ;hiding my eyes:

  57. That headache comes in handy for a few “opt-outs”.

    Just kidding. I know you aren’t a fibber fox.

    :P

  58. Dom says:

    Did ya’ll hear that CBS replaced Dan Marino and Shannon Sharpe from their pregame show and added Tony Gonzalez?

    I don’t know why they wanted to tweak that lineup as those five guys had such great chemistry.

    Maybe Marino will work in the Dolphins front office.

  59. Jandy says:

    Oh I can use an excuse if I need to Revvie, I’m human, ya know…
    but I did have one pounding at my right temple…wasn’t very cool.
    Going back to bed was just what the doctor ordered :)

  60. Milo Hamilton says:

    I don’t know who the Finnish equivalent of Robert Bortuzzo is but he’d better get ready. I don’t know how you can trust Olli Maatta in the medal round. :)

  61. Wonder where Brandie and Sarah are with a hockey game in progress. They must have headaches.

    :o

  62. Jandy says:

    lol!!!!!!

  63. Jandy says:

    Finland now on the PP

  64. Jandy says:

    8 minutes left in the game.
    C’mon Ollie score a goal!

  65. I dunno milo…maatta’s looked pretty good so far. :)

  66. Jandy says:

    snark at it’s finest from Milo ;)

  67. Jandy says:

    Grandlund hits Malkin, he’s a bit shaken up.

  68. Jandy says:

    Kinda like they ran into each other…Malkin got the worst of it.

  69. theplanisworking says:

    2 minute penalty on the Reverend for instigating. :)

  70. So looks like the ruskies have been practicing the disco stretch….

  71. Pucknutz says:

    Rootin for the Finns – but feeling bad for Geno.
    Finns playing shutdown now ….

  72. theplanisworking says:

    Whoever this Russian coach is, I foresee a vacation to Siberia soon.

  73. DJ says:

    This is looking like the Pens-Bruins series.

    Russia’s finest talents getting stymied at the blue line, and then Rask at the back end to stop the few lesser quality chances that do get through.

  74. Jandy says:

    Desperation breeds mistakes…

  75. theplanisworking says:

    :D

  76. Jandy says:

    yeah but feelin’ happy for Ollie :)

  77. scapper says:

    Hey, this is a family blog, young lady.

  78. Jandy says:

    You getting ice there Oh Purple One?

  79. olli olli olli oy oy oy

  80. Jandy says:

    Bob just shut down Jussi on a 2 on 1

  81. scapper says:

    Yes. NFL Studio Chemistry = Nonstop guffawing, chortling, hooting and snorting at each other’s (and especially one’s own) uber-hilarious comments.

  82. I was wondering why i started to get twitchy…and not in a good way.

  83. Pucknutz says:

    I see where Olli gets his cool….. Finns very composed… no panic…

  84. Varlie may find himself on a train to siberia too

  85. theplanisworking says:

    Yes ma’am.
    Supposed to get for another 3-4 hours.
    On top of the multiple feet of snow piled up everywhere, it is amazing that traffic can go anywhere at anytime.

  86. Jandy says:

    Monster Mash, I hear they make medicine for that ;)

  87. Sarah says:

    Great saves. But it’s nearly over for the Russians…

  88. Jandy says:

    2 minutes left in the game :)

  89. Jandy says:

    hey hey it’s Sarah :)

  90. Sarah says:

    4 straight icings wow

  91. Jandy says:

    indeed!

  92. Milo Hamilton says:

    Am I the only one that finds this game amusing ?

  93. Jandy says:

    Well, you be careful not to ovrdo, my friend! Stay in and stay warm.

  94. 21sthebest says:

    ” Don’t know why a cut finger would keep him from running and rolling his shoulders and stretching his quads and hammies.”

    Snider had foot surgery in the offseason and was on crutches for a month. So it could be that.

  95. Jandy says:

    I find it great for the Fins. And I’m happy to see Putin unhappy lol

  96. Jandy says:

    FInal Finland 3 Russia 1

  97. DJ says:

    On the ice surface size, you certainly expose D-men who cannot skate, but there seems to a lot of downtime spent retrieving pucks along the boards and in the corners where it is difficult to immediately get a body on a D-man.

    Heard that Finland’s rinks are wider than the NHL but about 8′ less than a traditional international surface. That size might be ideal, giving the true skating talents more room to operate but eliminating some of the puck retrieval time.

    I love the goal further away from the end boards. Better chance of keeping it away from the goaltender. Fleury would certainly benefit.

  98. Sarah says:

    Sorry busy this AM

  99. theplanisworking says:

    Everyone may be going………

  100. Jandy says:

    Good point 21….a very good one.

  101. Milo Hamilton says:

    Shero needs to get Geno on a plane right away.

  102. Sarah says:

    Rats poor Geno.

  103. Looks like 8 days off to spend with the family for Geno. Probably needs that more than a gold medal at this point in his life. He’ll be back there in 4 years.

  104. Jandy says:

    Yeah, I do feel bad for Geno. But not bad enough to with the Fins had lost :)

  105. Pucknutz says:

    Ya …. he looked pretty dejected …..

  106. Damon says:

    Wow…..good for Finland, good for Jussi and Maatta. For all the talk from the Russians about making it their Olympics, they just didn’t seem to have the urgency and passion they claimed they’d have (except against the US). Hope the Finns meet the US in the gold medal round.

  107. Wild Bill says:

    Russians will regret not starting Bobrovsky for a long time.

  108. Finns performed surgery and geno played hard but absolutely no chemistry with ovie or really anyone. Russian breakouts were a mess and borderline amateurish.

  109. Karen22 says:

    AWESOME picture in my mind of the Bradenton festivities! Thanks…I needed that!!

  110. Jandy says:

    Damon, seems the Russians were out-coached…

  111. Jandy says:

    Yeah I agree Wild one.

  112. DJ says:

    I know that Russia’s forwards were underwhelming, but equally underwhelming were their D-men. They would benefit from a couple quality puck-moving D-men.

    Can we trade Letang to Russia?

  113. scapper says:

    Al Michaels redux: “Do you believe that Ovie is still medal-less? YESSSSS!!!”

  114. Damon says:

    Seems they were out-everythinged….surprising since they were missing several good players, and the Russians had their whole team. I feel bad for Geno, and Milo had an excellent post above – Geno needs to leave that mess ASAP and get back to Pens practice (which I think starts today?).

    Already getting pumped/nervous for noontime…

  115. DJ says:

    My theory is that he gets a little rest now and comes out smoking the rest of the way.

    When he’s comfortable, he plays his best and he’s comfortable with his Pens teammates and our fair city.

  116. Karen22 says:

    WOOHOO!! Sad for Geno…BUT…Putin poutin’ again – PRICELESS!!

  117. theplanisworking says:

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

  118. Sarah says:

    Well half the D are KHLers….same problem as in Vancouver. Imagine if Team USA was told to field 9 guys from WilkesBarre….

    Radulov, Ovie, Kovy, all selfish individuals on O.

    Only Datsyuk and Geno play the right away.

  119. Wild Bill says:

    Unpleasant thought: Tuukka Rask is out there waiting for the Pens once again come playoff time.

  120. theplanisworking says:

    :D

  121. Karen22 says:

    Plaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan!!+++++++++++++++++++++++++

    :)

  122. Sarah says:

    I sure he doesn’t go into a deep depression!!!

  123. theplanisworking says:

    Morning!

    Always have to give you many +’s when I see you pop in…….
    New ritual. :)

  124. Besides leaving KHL to play in dallas i’d love to hear what nichuskin did to be benched in favor of tikhanov and popov? Good thing they left volchenkov and gonchar at home.

  125. theplanisworking says:

    I hate to agree with you, but he makes the Bruins the favorite to win the East.
    Boston is built for playoff hockey.

    Pens need to step it up to go to the Cup Finals.

  126. Radulov might be only one who can be proud of effort. Besides 2 dumb penalties he was best and most consistent player.

  127. Milo Hamilton says:

    I think when you look up “class act” in the dictionary, there’s a picture of Teemu Selanne.

  128. Jim S. says:

    Would this be a good time to point out that there are all of 5.4 million people living in Finland? It is a decent sized country, geographically. But, the population density might be the lowest in Europe.

    For a small country, they sure do put out a large # of world-class hockey players.

    And, they also seem to have somewhat of an idea of how to form and coach a team as well.

  129. Anze Kopitar, too.

    DK: Yes and yes.

  130. Scott says:

    Ha, great description. I despise those shows because of that atmosphere. I’d give anything to see an NFL pre-game show that was no-nonsense analysis and information, like a news show.

  131. Karen22 says:

    Why, thank you! I LIKE the ritual!

    Carry on! :)

  132. You can almost see their military service and discipline showing thru.

  133. He’ll be fine…as soon as someone passes him the puck when he expects it.

  134. Sarah says:

    Good lord….I’m seeing on twitter that Malkin actually had to TELL Bil to pull the goalie. Malkin told the coach. Unbelievable.

  135. They say that for the older Russian hockey players, this loss will never be forgotten or forgiven, while for the younger ones, not so much so, although the Russians will be hanging their heads over this for some time to come.

  136. DJ says:

    Have always loved Finnish players, Jim.

    Call it an admitted bias, but if there are two players on the board rated equally or even close, if I’m the GM, I’m ALWAYS selecting the Finn.

  137. Jandy says:

    Oh. My. God. sad.

  138. Jim S. says:

    That will happen when the President (or whatever title Putin has now) picks the coach.

  139. Damon says:

    Wow….

  140. theplanisworking says:

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

  141. DJ says:

    Letang for Radulov, HM?

  142. Sarah says:

    Y’know Peeps that net being off its mooring an inch or so is lookin mighty large now!!

  143. Sarah says:

    I believe the coach was hand picked by Putin.
    Not a joke.

  144. theplanisworking says:

    Too bad he didn’t say I’M SCORE !

  145. Damon says:

    Not surprising either…

  146. Damon says:

    Good point. I’m sure the Russians will be hammering that home for ages…..kind of like Seattle and Super Bowl XL.

  147. Jandy says:

    No thank you.

  148. theplanisworking says:

    Nice.

  149. Jim S. says:

    We got cheated out of a basketball gold medal vs them a long time ago. Blatantly.

    I’m over their loss from Saturday when they weren’t good enough in shootout.

  150. Damon says:

    Also a good point….that was much worse….

  151. DJ says:

    Ha! There’s your gifted winger, as well as your enigma to boot.

  152. Jim S. says:

    They’re so solid. Smart and dependable.

    And, one of them just might be the best defenseman in the NHL over the next 15-20 years.

  153. Arriba Wilver says:

    I was thinking the same thing, Milo, before Putin puts him on a train.

  154. Milo Hamilton says:

    1988 – Mario had to tell Pierre Creamer to pull the goalie in Washington in OT. He didn’t know a tie would eliminate them.

  155. Jim S. says:

    This is what I want to hear from Malkin now: “I am fly.”

  156. I’ll pretend i didnt read that DJ :)

  157. Jandy says:

    Radulov is trouble. Not good trouble.

  158. theplanisworking says:

    I met Creamer and Tony Esposito in an elevator in Washington Plaza apartments once. Not impressed with him at all. Very pleasant ride, however………. and I was impressed with Esposito.

  159. DJ says:

    I’m with ya. And invaluable experience for him headed into the playoffs.

  160. theplanisworking says:

    He will head to Mom’s for some bortsch.
    Then he will come back. Wonder if the Russian players will stay for the closing ceremonies?

  161. DJ says:

    Ha! Just having some fun.

    Let’s see if we can get a Finland-USA final now.

  162. Milo Hamilton says:

    As a GM he made a great goalie.

  163. Milo Hamilton says:

    I’ve decided that for next Halloween I’m dressing as Johnny Weir.

  164. Dom says:

    That show Rules!

  165. Wild Bill says:

    But do you have the hair for it, Milo?

  166. Damon says:

    Just heard the Russian coach threw Ovi under the bus saying something like “I have no idea how Ovechkin couldn’t score in 4 games.” Guess he’s trying to avoid a trip to Siberia…

  167. Damon says:

    I’m sure a good bedazzled headband can fix any hair…

  168. Milo Hamilton says:

    I’ve got the hair. Do I have the guts ? That’s the question.

  169. theplanisworking says:

    +1

  170. Wild Bill says:

    I have an idea how it happened – he’s a one dimensional player, and teams now know how to take that dimension away.

  171. Wild Bill says:

    Sorry, thought I hit reply to Damon.

  172. DJ says:

    Yes, the proverbial one-trick pony.

    But his one trick is a good one.

  173. theplanisworking says:

    Maybe he cut his finger on a potato also?

  174. theplanisworking says:

    Last week, a high school senior from Bensalem Pa., scored 14 points in a game. He was the team manager for the past 4 years. The Sixers signed him to a ceremonial 2-day contract. Pretty neat, huh?

    He has Down Syndrome.
    Enjoy this article…………..

    http://abclocal.go.com/wpvi/story?section=news/sports&id=9434878

  175. Lad 9 says:

    Hey Planster. My son’s BB team will be playing your Hurricanes this Saturday in the WPIAL’s at a time and place TBD. How many points will you give me? :)

  176. Rob says:

    Wish they would have televised this game. Then again the network probably would have ruined it with a glowing ball and television timeouts. Cool stuff!

    http://grantland.com/the-triangle/hockeybest-before-usa-canada-usa-meets-canada-in-sochi-street-hockey/

  177. Milo Hamilton says:

    Wherever it is, get there early.

  178. theplanisworking says:

    I don’t know……….. maybe 20 or so?

    I looked at the bracket, and I don’t know where they will play the game. Could be North Allegheny, Ambridge, Chartiers Valley, or some other random spot. I hope you already have your tickets if you are going………… New Castle will buy every ticket available. Doesn’t matter how big the gym is.

    Good Luck to your team.

  179. Damon says:

    Rob Biertempfel tweeted:

    Will #Pirates extend Hurdle/GM? Nutting: “It’s early in ST. Not time to have that discussion.” Um … #Braves extended their GM/mgr today.

  180. theplanisworking says:

    Indeed Milo.

    I heard the gym was packed over an hour ahead of time last Saturday. I remember driving some older fans to games when I still lived there……….. we always got there first so they could pick a good seat, and the AD always got a chuckle hearing the times I got them there.

    Not saying I ever went fast, but once I got from NC to North Allegheny in 26 minutes. Everyone else got there 25 minutes after me. :)

  181. Milo Hamilton says:

    Ben O’Connor is a top notch coach.

  182. Jim S. says:

    We apparently only name Opening Day pitchers at this point.

  183. Jim S. says:

    +++, plan.

  184. DJ says:

    Checking in on another D-man in the 2012 NHL Draft:

    Derrick Pouliot — 47 GP, 17 G, 44 A, 61 PTS, +29

  185. theplanisworking says:

    Maybe they were secretly extended already.
    They will announce it sometime in the summer………

  186. He’s still a few seasons away…IMO

  187. Oh boy…cue the circular firing squad.

  188. Jim S. says:

    Travis Snider … Chef of the Future

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=WySVFjfHSqs

    I hope that copied.

  189. DJ says:

    They said that about Gregory Polanco last year too.

    Would like to see him start at WB and then up after an injury or two.

  190. Jandy says:

    Awesome!!!!

  191. Jim S. says:

    Nutting & Coonelly would never do anything like that. Never.

  192. theplanisworking says:

    Don’t know much about Bethel Park, or their coach. I do believe you when you praise him.

    The problem New Castle poses for any team is their speed and athleticism. If you try to run and gun with them, you will lose by 30. If you try to slow the ball down, they are aggressive with their D, and create many turnovers and get easy baskets, and you lose by 20.

    Best way to beat New Castle is to play tough, physical D, and pray they have an off-night shooting. That has only happened once in the past 3 years. Coach Blundo isn’t a slouch either………….. but I just don’t see how a team can beat NC.

  193. Jim S. says:

    Bet you didn’t realize there was actually footage of the Snider sweet potato incident.

  194. Milo Hamilton says:

    So how they do in spring training will help them decide if they like their manager & general manager ? I’m glad that their modest success hasn’t changed the way they do business.

  195. Jandy says:

    what’s that saying about never saying never….better buy some Kevlar undies, Jim ;)

  196. Oh ya he’ll be at WB for sure but defensively he’s no polanco. He’s more of a left handed Karlsson right now but might be even worse defensively.

  197. Sarah, i think we established before pre-lim’s that when russia doesn’t win gold they’ll blame refs 1st, goalie 2nd and coaches/selection committee 3rd.

    Sometimes its almost too easy…

  198. toochca says:

    Nice article!! Thanks Plan!! ++++++++++++++++++++++

  199. theplanisworking says:

    I was expecting Swedish Chef. :)

  200. 21sthebest says:

    I took that to mean that it’s early in spring training as in early in the year and he wants to see how the regular season progresses. But who knows.

  201. theplanisworking says:

    Nice to see ESPN isn’t slobbering all over Jeter for the whole year.
    Presser right now about Jeter retiring.
    Can’t wait til the real pressers start every day.

    Oh, wait……….

  202. theplanisworking says:

  203. Milo Hamilton says:

    If anyone deserves to be slobbered over …

  204. Jandy says:

    Yinz both kill me lol

  205. DJ says:

    I’m not a big plus-minus guy but +29 says a little differently.

    Plus, we’ve got enough defensive D-men in our system that our PP (and therefore our team) would benefit from an offensive D-man that knows a little about time and spacing, how to enter the O-zone efficiently and seamlessly, finding shooting lanes and consistently getting his shot on net.

  206. Jim S. says:

    Are you guys comparing a baseball player to a hockey player? Be very careful.

  207. Jandy says:

    hahahahaha!

  208. We need to find footage of brandie’s avatar…and why no cookiemonster footage?

  209. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    Hoka Hey!…..And then some.
    I had the pleasure of hearing that President Coonelly declared this Pirate team better than the one last year.
    A curious statement being that the team from October is minus Burnett, Byrd and Morneau….And added the well-traveled Edinson Volquez.
    Today…I hear Bob Nutting will speak.
    That is sure to be a snoozer.

    All this and more gives me “little to no” excitement about the upcoming season.
    Stay tuned for that trade that will be an exercise in “deletion by subtraction.”
    You can “bank” on it…..

  210. Jim S. says:

    Do firemen wear those?

  211. Just going by what i’ve seen. IMO he’s butter with the puck and toast without it. But i haven’t seen him since pre-season and memorial cup from last season so maybe he’s improved. Either way IMO he’ll need some seasoning in WB.

  212. Agreed…no comparison :)

  213. Jandy says:

    YOU need to GET an avatar ;)

  214. DJ says:

    Not at all. Just that when I see predictions that “so and so” will absolutely need “x” more years of seasoning in the minors, it’s often amusing . . . and frequently wrong.

  215. Jandy says:

    I dunno, but I will ask some and find out! lol

  216. Kinda depends on who’s doing the predicting eh? :)

  217. Jandy says:

    why not?

  218. theplanisworking says:

    He might deserve to be slobbered over a bit, but not 24/7 (sorry Travis)/365. The Stanley Cup Finals, NBA Finals, NFL Draft will all be pre-empted for footage of Jeter tying his shoes, or eating an ice cream cone, etc.

    Gone are the days of small retirement announcements like Dr. J.

  219. And now, Ted Ligety has become the first American to win the gold in the Men’s Giant Slolem in sledding. And the US will be competing in the hockey semifinals shortly.

  220. theplanisworking says:

    Doesn’t the Boss of this blog want everyone to have an avatar?

  221. DJ says:

    I gave no prediction, just that I’d like to see him given the opportunity after an injury or two next season.

  222. Milo Hamilton says:

    Derek Jeter has played in 2,602 games. In only 1 of them has his team been mathematically eliminated.

  223. Jandy says:

    I just think it would be very cool if our very own Hockey Monster (aka Monster Mash and Console Smash) would have one.

  224. Jandy says:

    Quick starting for US

  225. Jandy says:

    Pavelec in for Czech

  226. Wild Bill says:

    Here we go, USA hockey!

  227. You are more than welcome to swing by my office and hook it up but every time i’ve tried it didnt wanna cooperate.

  228. theplanisworking says:

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

  229. Wild Bill says:

    Yes, we did go!

  230. Rob says:

    That was quick. Keep your foot on the pedal!

  231. theplanisworking says:

    SCIRE !!!!!!!!!!!

  232. Jandy says:

    USA 1-0

  233. Jandy says:

    JVR with the opener goal :)

  234. Wild Bill says:

    Soffff goal, but we will take it.

  235. Rob says:

    I don’t care how old Jagr is whenever I see him with the puck down low I’m afraid what he is going to do.

  236. Jandy says:

    he’s still lethal, and will be for years to come…

  237. theplanisworking says:

    Was that an own goal?

  238. Jandy says:

    I don’t know I only have internet feed

  239. Jandy says:

    Said something about the puck going in off Suter

  240. DJ says:

    Crosby breakaway and shoots from 25 feet. No goal. What did I say above about wanting to see him take the puck deeper on goalies?

    Kunitz then follows off crossbar with wide open net.

  241. I hope our line changes dont get worse in 2nd period.

  242. Jandy says:

    Czechs dominating play…c’mon boys, put it in high gear!

  243. Rob says:

    Definitely taking to to them. Hopefully they will tire out.

  244. Jim S. says:

    (I am) scire!

  245. Lad 9 says:

    Yes he is. On a personal and professional level, i just love the guy. One of the finest men I have ever met. His game plan against Fox Chapel was brilliant and he had the guts to stick to it. My son, who is as deep on the bench as you can imagine, thinks the world of him.

  246. Rob says:

    Sharp 1-0 Canada

  247. theplanisworking says:

    Thank goodness there are coaches of good character like at BP and NC.

  248. Baywatch says:

    Hey, Milo!

  249. Jandy says:

    Hey hey it’s Bay :)

  250. theplanisworking says:

    SCIRE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  251. Thats more like it…

  252. Lad 9 says:

    Thanks Plan. I am figuring NA, Butler, or maybe even Westminster if they can get another high profile game there. Definitely getting there early.

  253. Rob says:

    USA USA USA!!! 2-1

  254. Jandy says:

    What can Brown do for you? :)

  255. Rob says:

    What a sneaky play by Latvia 1-1

  256. Rob says:

    Ease my heart palpitations.

  257. Milo Hamilton says:

    Hey Bay !

  258. Rob says:

    Changing the Crosby line again. I don’t get it.

  259. Jandy says:

    Neither does Babcock obviously…

  260. DJ says:

    Great pass by Backes. Blues Olympic contributors: Backes, Oshie & Pietrangelo.

    Backes another player from the incredible 2003 NHL Draft headed by Fleury. We got that pick right. Ryan Stone picked #32 before Patrice Bergeron (#45), Shea Weber (#49) and David Backes (#62)? Well, not so much.

  261. Get on backes back….the bingo game is ready to roll…

  262. Rob says:

    Get the puck on goal and good things happen. Imagine that! 3-1

  263. Jandy says:

    woop woop!!!!

  264. DJ says:

    Backes again!

  265. theplanisworking says:

    ANOTHER SCIRE !!!!!!!!!!!! 3-1 USA!

  266. Jim S. says:

    Are you bringing soccer into this, plan? That’ll get a rap on your knuckles.

  267. With a shot that would make mario smile.

  268. Jandy says:

    woop woop!!!!

  269. It’s looking good for the US at the end of the first period since they lead 3-1. Now all they have to likely do is not let their guard down like the Czechs did in the quarterfinals vs the Slovaks and they barely got by then.

  270. theplanisworking says:

    Hahahahaha!
    I do soccer once in a while……. just not today.

    I did ask about the RiverPuppies yesterday…..

  271. Sarah says:

    Jones ripping Babs a new one in between periods. ROFL!

  272. Jandy says:

    USA on PP, let’s get a goal!

  273. Rob says:

    Rollin Rollin Rollin! 4-1

  274. Rob says:

    Ask and ye shall receive!

  275. theplanisworking says:

    Well, the selection committee did a great job!

    4-1 USA!

    Tell DK they aren’t screwing up the Olympics…….

  276. theplanisworking says:

    DK tweets, Canada-1 takes gold, USA-1 and Lauryn Williams take silver.
    .01 seconds back.

    :(

  277. Milo Hamilton says:

    Elana Meyers chokes away gold in the bobsled. Lauryn Williams needs to find herself a driver.

  278. Jandy says:

    Parise!

  279. Baywatch says:

    “I’ll be YINZ … BAYBY tonight!”

  280. Jim S. says:

    Yes, you did.

  281. Rob says:

    Flipping back and forth and I must say the Canadians are playing some uninspiring hockey.

  282. Milo Hamilton says:

    That would be even more amusing than the Russians losing. Maybe if Crosby was playing ? Oh I’m sorry.

  283. DJ says:

    Nice to see USA forwards listening to Bylsma and going to the front of the net.

    Now if we could only get our Pens doing the same come playoff time.

  284. Rob says:

    Looking at the Russians and The Canadians I have seen very little team play or cohesiveness.

  285. Jandy says:

    :thwap:

  286. Jandy says:

    That was for Milo ;)

  287. Milo Hamilton says:

    Ouch !

  288. Jim S. says:

    I’m thinking there will be a large degree of celebration going on in Finland tonight. They have a political and military history with their neighbors to the East that has not always been pleasant.

    And, Russia is 25-30x the size of Finland, population-wise. And, this game took place on Russian soil. The Fins back home have to be loving this. David slew Goliath.

  289. Jim S. says:

    I demand a recount.

    :-(

  290. BillyBaduka says:

    LOL!

  291. DJ says:

    Nail-biter for Canada. Kunitz with the yawning net only minutes in now looking large. He’s usually money so may be gripping his stick too tightly.

  292. The US now leads decisively 4-1 at the end of the second period. Let’s hope they can wrap it up in the third period.

  293. BillyBaduka says:

    It’s Sophia Loren…

  294. Sarah says:

    Yeah DK mentioned Kuni is a bundle of nerves….

  295. Sarah says:

    Meanwhile C a nada thinks they’re playing Switzerland….

  296. Jandy says:

    USA 5-1 Phil Kessel didn’t want anyone forgetting about him :)

  297. theplanisworking says:

    SCIRE !!!!!!!! ;)

    Where is the Brandimal?

  298. Jim S. says:

    Why? Is the opponent remaining neutral?

    A little Switzerland humor there.

  299. Jandy says:

    I dunno…she was late to the party the other day…must be busy….

  300. DJ says:

    Message for Olympic hockey teams:

    Try not to have the entire weight of your country on your backs when you play.

  301. theplanisworking says:

    - – -
    Booooooooooo.

    That was a Swiss Miss. ;)

  302. Jandy says:

    WTH is going on?? The Canada game???

  303. Jandy says:

    Well, Canada got a PP out of it…

  304. Jim S. says:

    Somebody whispered in Bylsma’s ear right before the game, “Be sure to give them regular season advice.”

  305. DJ says:

    Yes, their neutral zone is the entire ice, Jim.

  306. Jandy says:

    Hemsky goal USA 5 -1

  307. Jim S. says:

    And, I’m just kidding. I like Bylsma, for the most part. The Pens just often seem like a team that doesn’t adapt in the playoffs.

  308. DJ says:

    Hilarious!

  309. Jandy says:

    Lost count…6-1

  310. theplanisworking says:

    Canada scores.
    If they lose, it will be an upset for the ages.

  311. Rob says:

    2-1 Canada. OH Canada . . .

  312. Jandy says:

    WEBER Goal Canada 2 Latvia 1

  313. Jim S. says:

    Well, they aren’t exactly prepared to do battle with those red multi-purpose gadgets they all carry around.

  314. Jandy says:

    ok I THINK it’s officially 5-2 USA

  315. DJ says:

    Talk about a heavy shot.

  316. Jim S. says:

    How did everything turn out for your daughter, Jandy? Hopefully, her soreness is going away and nothing else popped up, health-wise.

  317. theplanisworking says:

    Both Ovie and Jagr out of the Olympics.
    Great day to be a Pittsburgh hockey fan.

  318. Rob says:

    So let me get this straight. The winners of the next games play for gold/silver and the losers play for bronze?

  319. Jandy says:

    Thanks for asking, Jim. Her neck and shoulders were sore for a day or two, but she’s fine now. Praise the Lord.

  320. Milo Hamilton says:

    The decaying carcass of Sandis Ozolinsh !

  321. Milo Hamilton says:

    Yes and yes.

  322. Jim S. says:

    Truer words have never been spoken, DJ!

  323. Rob says:

    Thank you!

  324. Jandy says:

    Canada hung on to beat Latvia 2-1

  325. theplanisworking says:

    USA is doomed.
    Barry Melrose just said USA favored over CAN.

    On the plus side, he didn’t look like Don Cherry……..

  326. DJ says:

    Olympic hockey is the best. There’s always a player on another team where you focus on his play just a little more than during the regular season and think what the Pens might be if they had “that guy.”

    There’s probably six on the USA team alone where I’ve had that thought.

  327. Sarah says:

    They are playing like the Pens in playoffs…

  328. Rob says:

    Nicely done Latvia!

  329. It’ll be the US and Canada in the men’s finals, just as it should be, and, hopefully, the US wins the gold.

  330. DJ says:

    Having an absolute hammer at the blue line would do wonders for the Pens.

  331. Sarah says:

    Us Can is the semi unfortunately…..

  332. Pucknutz says:

    So…… its CAN/US – FINN/SWEDEN – semis ….. correct?

  333. Ok peeps…picks? Beat you to it sarah…ha.

  334. JohninOshkosh says:

    All Scandinavian semi vs all North American semi. The Swedes have a great deal of contempt for the Finns. And the USA wants payback from Vancouver.

    An outstanding final four.

  335. DJ says:

    USA — gold
    FIN — silver*
    CAN — bronze

    * wishful thinking

  336. Jim S. says:

    Fins 2, Swedes 1.

    US 3, Canada 2.

    Fins 2, US 1 in 2OT.

  337. Wow jim…finns with the gold…bold pick.

  338. JohninOshkosh says:

    Conan O’Brien:

    “Two members of Pussy Riot were arrested for protesting in Sochi. If found guilty, they could be sentenced to 6 months in a Sochi hotel room.”

  339. Pucknutz says:

    I am liken that pick DJ – USA – FINLAND – gold game ! Cool!
    Sorry Sid – US has to take yinz out. :)

  340. Dom says:

    Yeah, unfortunate for Canada! Oh!

  341. Jim S. says:

    Ok, now that we have resolved all of that for the day ….

    On to the news of the day.

    AJ Burnett. Love him or hate him?

    JK. :-)

  342. Jandy says:

    :snicker:

  343. Jim S. says:

    I figure why not? Trying to be the smartest guy in the room.

    Plus, even though I didn’t see the game, it sounds as though they may have played a better game vs. Russia than the US. I’m just going by my take on the comments here.

    Rooting hard for the US, of course.

  344. DJ says:

    Man, you really know how to ruin a great afternoon, Jim.

  345. Pucknutz says:

    LOL — DK would tellya to take to Travis Blog :)

  346. Ya the finns were solid today for sure. But i like where the US team is at now too. Canada hasn’t been tested yet but they still look shaky…but scary at the same time. Finns have work to do against the swedes who were only up 1-0 going into the 3rd against slovenia.

    I still need to think about my picks.

  347. Sarah says:

    Yah I honestly got nothin at the moment!
    Biggest surprises for me is how good FIN has looked, without all FOUR of their C’s.
    And how meh Sweden seems, though Lundquist is great. That is going to be a hell of a battle.

    Re US and CAN, I dunno. US looks like they have much more speed….Babcock definitely doing his best to ruin continuity, and needs to roll 3 lines giving more TOI to the best players.

    And Kunitiz couldn’t put a puck in the ocean at this point. Does he play?

  348. Sarah says:

    Tavares out w a knee. Wow.

  349. I didn’t see much of the canada game but looks like their fighting it pretty good. Think i’ll have some thoughts tomorrow. Finns are hot, swedes are the swedes and canada/usa is a toss up no matter how bad canada looks.

  350. DJ says:

    DK: After covering the bobsled, are you able to then watch replays of the hockey games today?

  351. Damon says:

    latest edition of In The Room….love these…

    http://penguins.nhl.com/club/page.htm?id=93328&navid=DL|PIT|home

  352. Or a dorm room at LaRoche College.

  353. Jandy says:

    +++ thanks for sharing, Damon.

  354. scapper says:

    Just think, one week from tonight…………and we STILL won’t have real hockey. Get these silly exhibitions over and let’s get back to hockey the way it should be played.

    Best part about this final four is that I’ll be happy regardless of the outcome. Four teams deserving of a medal. Well, except for the one that soils the metaphorical bed, that is.

  355. Milo Hamilton says:

    Tomas Vokoun has been medically cleared to play. I guess the Letang issue is sparing them some serious cap problems.

  356. Jim S. says:

    I know. I was just kidding. I am totally sick of that issue.

  357. Brandie says:

    Good to hear USA won, Canada squeaked on by, and Finland won. I feel bad for missing the party, but I had some adult issues to attend.

    One of which is securing a position as a Customer Account Advisor, full time, with benefits.

    Details to follow.

    BTW…Stu, if you got your ears on…thank you again.

  358. Woop woop…as someone would say.

  359. Brandie says:

    Channeling your inner Jandy, eh Consol Smash? :)

  360. Sarah says:

    Niiiice! Congrats!

  361. Its not hard to channel the jandster

  362. Brandie says:

    Thank you Sister Sarah.

    BTW…Excellent Puck analysis. With you and the Hockey Crew I got all the information I need with a sweet dose of sass!

  363. Sarah says:

    There’s been much to sass about!!!

  364. Jim S. says:

    Class act, that Ray Rice! I was listening to ESPN Radio on my drive home, and Dan Lebatard described a video that TMZ Sports has posted that apparently shows Rice dragging his fiance off an elevator in Atlantic City. You may have read that he had a blowup with her in a casino. Sounds as though it might be getting a lot worse now. There are reports that he also decked her with an upper cut. Oh my! The description I heard, which described witnesses to this, sounded chilling.

    Ray Lewis might need to be called in to intervene.

  365. Brandie says:

    Are you gonna start thwappin people with a size 9 wide can of whoop azz?

  366. Brandie says:

    You know it is a million degree mess when we have to call in Big Ray Ray to deal with thug in training Lil Ray Ray!

  367. Sarah says:

    Watch for MAF to implode….

  368. Catching up on canada game and i can most definitely get used to watching crosby setup weber for one timers.

  369. Brandie says:

    From your fingers / keyboard to Shero’s pocketbook? Let’s make this happen Ray!

  370. Jandy says:

    GREAT news, Sistah!

  371. Jandy says:

    Who is taking my name in vain???
    ;)

  372. Milo Hamilton says:

    Syracuse just lost their 1st game. To 6-19 Boston College at the Carrier Dome. OK, they’re 7-19 now.

  373. Syracuse just lost to 7-19 Boston College 62-59 in overtime! Their winning streak is over! Now only Wichita is undefeated!

  374. theplanisworking says:

    Now that Syracuse has lost, should I be expecting a hue and cry about their out of conference schedule? Or start the “fire Boeheim” movement?

  375. If Pitt only had any kind of scoring attack, then they could’ve beat Syracuse at home themselves instead of losing to the Orange the way they did.

  376. DJ says:

    He, in particular, prompted my “hammer at the blue line” comment above @ 2:36 p.m.

  377. Oh he knows where i stand on weber…i’d be willing to shake things up. Have been willing since before philly series.

  378. Upon further review Canada doesn’t look as horrible as some have suggested. Kuni hit the bar but all in all he and sid have been as consistent as anyone. Price still hasn’t been tested so i expect that to change but i dont think canada will have a hard time focusing for the game. Babcock holding them back a bit by rolling 4 lines but that will change. Still cant make a pick.

  379. JohninOshkosh says:

    NBC’ s Russian POLITICAL analyst calls out Alexander Ovechkin during in-studio interview with Dan Patrick. He slammed the Russians selfish play and lack of team effort.

    Remember, Pozner’ s job during the Cold War was to put good spins on Soviet Politburo and the Kremlin in the Western media!

  380. Stuart says:

    Nice, and good for you Brandie!

    Stu

  381. theplanisworking says:

    ++++++

 
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