Archive for the ‘Jochen Hecht’ Category

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It’s All Starting To Come Together

September 18, 2009

- Paul Hamilton is reporting that the Sabres lines appear to be coming together quite nicely. I’m happy that the “popular opinion” line of Gaustad, Hecht and Grier appears to be a reality. (Not that I think Lindy reads the blogs or other writings outside of the MSM, but hey, it’s all about me on this blog.) I hope that playing with Grier and Gaustad pulls Hecht out of the funk that he appeared to get into at several points last year.

And Lindy’s also altering The System. Oh, how I’ve missed hearing about The System. Then again, by mid-January, I’ll probably be so sick of hearing about The System, I’ll wish that we traded The System to Atlanta for Max Afinogenov.

- I wonder how much whining the trio of Miller, Gerbe and Kennedy threw at Lindy so that they all could play in Michigan tomorrow night? I mean, we know Miller probably did the least amount of whining, he was probably more of a demander than a whiner, but Kennedy and Gerbe are the youngins and don’t quite have the clout Miller does. I could imagine Lindy letting them play just to shut them up and get them out of his hair (what little he has left).

- Anne discusses the awesomeness that is the picture accompanying the Tim Kennedy article on Sabres.com, but I want to talk about how yet another one of the little kiddos is looking up to Gaustad as a role model. This time, Kennedy is analyzing Gaustad’s face off skills, trying to pick up any pointers and techniques to help him win more of them. I know Kennedy said that he wouldn’t dream of out-muscling Gaustad in a faceoff, but those two going up against each other in a drill could be fun to watch.

- The Sabres theme for the year appears to be “City Of Hockey.” I really like how the theme is carrying through the passport-like media guide and the season tickets. I’d like a t-shirt with the crossed swords/City of Hockey logo on it, but again, I need another Sabres shirt like I need a hole in the head. Heh.

- Where are Michael Kors and Nina Garcia? Project Runway just isn’t the same without them.

- How awesome are the Voltaggio brothers on Top Chef? Not only are they good cooks, but they also have some dry wit and intensity that’s a welcome break from the typical reality show crazy.

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Look! It’s Real Hockey(ish) Played By Real Hockey Players

September 12, 2009

I went to Puck Drop today, and this wordy, photo filled post summarizes my day. Carry on at your own risk.

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Sabres vs. Canadiens – 3.29.09

March 28, 2009

First Period

- Like the Sabres, I spent today in Canada. I went to Ikea in Burlington, and then on the way home, did the touristy thing and walked around Niagara Falls, ON. I’ve said it before, but the Canadian side of the Falls is so much cooler than the American side. It has the better view and the totally cheesy tourist attractions that make it so much fun. I walked up Clifton Hill (which, between the Hill and the 7 flights of stairs walk to my car, means that my legs are screaming at me now) and walked along the Falls. The weather is still cold enough that the water coming over the Falls has caused ginormous blocks of ice to form at the base of both the Horseshoe and American Falls. The ice formations were absolutely gorgeous, and the ones at the base of the Horseshoe Falls were home to a number of seagulls. Also, why are the Timbits so much better in Canada than they are here?

- I’m liking that the Sabres crease has again become a no-touch zone for the opposition. Gaustad and Kaleta prove on the first Montreal shift that they will not tolerate any liberties in or around the crease. What made the situation funnier was that Miller was trying to sneak out of the crease and away from the fists of fury.

- The two minute penalty on Lapierre was bullshit. That was a nasty hit that could have seriously injured Kaleta. Lapierre should have been given a minumum four minutes, if not thrown out of the game.

- Holy hell, the Rivet / Kostopolous fight was hot. Remind me to cross the street if I see an angry Craig Rivet heading my way.  Kevin Sylvester interrupts to tell us that Rivet was screaming at Kostopolous that ‘this was Round One.’ Oh lord, this game is going to get out of control quickly.

- There was a shot of three Sabres lined up in the penalty box after the Rivet fight. With Rivet, Kaleta and Moore in there, things were kind of tight. But we were at least treated to shirtless Rivet, so thank the broadcast gods for that.

- Hank takes a deflected shot off of his forehead, so while he’s off getting checked out and Rivet is in the box, the Sabres play with only four defensemen.

hanktoniryan

Ryan: “Oh shit, he’s bleeding. What do we do?”

Toni: “Usually with the kids, I kiss it and make it all better. I ain’t kissing Hank.”

Ryan: “Don’t look at me. I don’t do owies.”

- WHOOO! Mair tips a shot past Carey Price to make it 1-0, Buffalo. Someone forgot to cover Mair, as he was wide open to the left of Price. Memo to the Habs: just because he’s not a scorer doesn’t mean he should be ignored.

Second Period

- I often wonder if Harry Neale’s repeated use of “the Buffalo player” during a call is him honestly not knowing who is involved in the play or if he’s just trying to be generic and leave the details to RJ?

- WHOO! Timmy rips a bullet past Price for the Sabres second goal of the night. And a power play goal, no less.

- RJ: “These guys have got to get off, but they can’t do it.” I think they have medicine for that now.

- Harry Neale mentions that Timmy’s goal earlier tonight gives Timmy 17 for the season, which is a career high. It’s kind of sad that he’s such a talented player and has only ever had 16 goals in a season. I know the concussions and crap have hindered him in the production department, but I had no idea his numbers were that low. I want to see him get 20 by the end of the year.

- Higgins rips a shot from the dot past Miller to make it 2-1, Buffalo.

- Rivet somehow gets hurt during a flurry in the Buffalo zone. He skates off the ice, doubled over, and we’re treated to several shots of him on the bench shaking out his right hand and applying ice to it. In addition, RJ notes that Kaleta has not reappeared on the Buffalo bench for the second period. I wonder if he got his bell rung after that hit in the first and his better angels talked him out of returning for the rest of the game,.

- In the dirty play department, Butler was cross checked in the back of the head, and Roy got a stick tap in the face. It’s all fun and games until someone gets seriously hurt, boys.

- RJ tries to inject a little levity into the game, as the Sabres and Habs tussle after yet again another stop by Price leads to a tussle in front of the net. RJ wonders how many times he’s said “and here we go’ during the game. Not that the chippy is getting out of control or anything.

- The Bell Centre PA System is playing “99 Luftballoons” during a stoppage in play. Awesome.

- Shit. Montreal ties it at two on a wraparound by Koivu.

- Double shit, Montreal takes a lead on a Kovalev power play goal. Stupid fucking Hecht takes a retaliatory cross checking penalty as he was removed from the puck on a breakaway. Meanwhile, Derek Roy is off for repairs after taking a stick to someplace where sticks should not go.

- I knew I should have picked up some alcohol at the Duty Free on my way home from Canuckistan. I’m not liking where this game is headed.

- During the intermission, Timmy kind of gives Kevin Sylvester an “are you fucking kidding me” look during their intermission conversation. Kevin Sylvester brought up the fact that tonight Timmy scored his career high in goals, and will he think about that now or after the game. Timmy pissily (and rightly so) replies that all he’s thinking about is the next 20 minutes, and how it’s the most important 20 minutes of the season. I liked seeing the fire coming out of Timmy, but do want to point out that we wouldn’t be hinging an entire season on one fucking period if the earlier parts of the season hadn’t been such a hot mess.

Third Period

- “Ambition without determination has no destination.’ – Reportedly Lindy’s game quote for the day.I’m surprised that perspiration or some other -ation didn’t appear in the quote as well.

- WHOO! Clarke MacArthur scores his 15th goal of the season to tie the game at 3. If he would have missed the wide open net, I might have thrown my shoe at the TV.

- Sweet German on a bratwurst, Hecht continues his suckitude tonight by flipping the puck out of play. Real good, Jochen. Real good. Well, at least this penalty didn’t cost the Sabres as the PK performs admirably, including a nice shorthanded chance by Timmy.

- Whoever decided that the song with the annoying “put your hands up in the air” lyrics needed to be a part of any arena rotation should be taken out back and shot. Thank you.

- Harry reports that Sekera hasn’t played a shift in the third period, but doesn’t know if he’s hurt or just in the doghouse. My vote is for doghouse. Sekera was brutal earlier tonight.

Overtime/Skills Competition

- RJ shares the comforting stat that the home team has won every game in this series so far. Great, just great.

- Bob Gainey looks like he’s in need of an enema or something. Dude looks uptight.

- Four-on-four blahblahblah. The game will be decided in the skills competition.

- Timmy’s the first Buffalo shooter and there’s a brief delay while the refs sort out the paperwork. Timmy looks like his pissed at the delay. The mom unit cracks that every minute this game is delayed is one less minute the boys can spend at a bar when they get back to Buffalo.

- Miller stops Kovalev and Price stops Staffy.

- Next up Tanguay is biffed by Miller, who deflects it over top of the net. Pommers whiffs his shot off the fucking crossbar.

- Miller stops Koivu point blank on the final regulation shootout.

- And I beg to differ with Harry Neale. The shootout is not exciting. Hockey is a team sport and should not be decided on an individual effort.

- Price stops Roy and Miller stops Markov to complete Round 4.

- Price stops Vanek’s attempt for the top corner and Miller stops Plekanec to finalize Round 5.

- Holy flirkin schnitt. Toni Lydman scores in the shootout. Turns out its the game winner as Miller makes the save on the Montreal player. I was kind of having flashbacks to Hank scoring on Marty Brodeur last year. It’s amazing what happens when you put the less conventional players out in the shootout, eh?

- So, as it stands right now, the Sabres are four points behind Montreal for eighth. Things just got a heck of a lot more interesting. Never a dull moment in the Buff, right?

- Ooh, commercial for a free chicken wrap snacker at Timmy Ho’s on 4/1 between 1130-2. Sweet. And Wednesday is also free medium coffee day at Dunkin Donuts.

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Sabres v. Rangers – 2.21.09

February 21, 2009

Thoughts before, during and after tonight’s Rangers game.

- I didn’t see the Sabres Notebook on Friday morning due to the fact that I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off at the office. However, Mike Harrington mentioned the Notebook in his live blog of tonight’s game. And I have to say, the headline is a bit of an epic FAIL for the Buffalo News. I know the News has put up a clunker or two of a story or headline in the past, but this is a new low. (Sorry, Mike.)

On a lighter note, can anyone else see Marty tromping through the woods to pay a social call on Lindy (or borrow a cup of sugar)?

- I really liked the interview that Craig Rivet did for the Sabres Show. To me, that’s what a proper player interview should be. Roby allowed Rivet to expand upon his answers, and wasn’t in any hurry to get to the next question, unlike some interviews that Maria Genero has done. There was an easy rapport between the two gentlemen, as they both were drawing on the same experience of being professional hockey players.I liked that Rivet said that he’s not afraid to call a player out on the carpet if he thinks that they aren’t playing to their full potential, and that some other guys in the room have stepped up into that role as well. I’d really like to know who the players are that Rivet said hadn’t experienced a public call out before. I have my suspicions as to the guilty parties.

- I’m liking the Paille / Goose combination tonight. They were hitting anyone in a Rangers sweater that moved during their final shift in the first period. That’s the kind of spunk we need to see out of them night after night.

-  So that stupid slag faced whore Scott Gomez tangled with Miller, causing Miller to awkwardly fall and have to leave the game. I did, however, think that it was incredibly telling that Miller crawled back toward the crease, trying to keep up with the play, rather than flopping around behind the net like a dying trout. That tells me that the team and the game is more important to Miller than his own personal status.

I’m surprised that the team let Ryan speak to the media after the game. Usually injured players are squirreled away, never to be seen by the postgame media horde. Also, color me surprised that the team didn’t try to disguise the injury under the traditional lower-body injury classification. I wonder if the team figured that the shitstorm they would get from the media and the crazy internet people (this blogger included) outweighed the benefits of keeping the injury secret.

Miller reported he has a high ankle sprain, but a low one for that type of injury. (A low, high ankle sprain. Isn’t that some sort of oxymoron?) He looked shaken during the interview, but I don’t think it was so much that he was hurt, but more a reaction to the intensity of the media’s questions about the injury and Gomez’s intent. On a shallow side note, I did like the tweed overcoat that Miller was wearing. A peacoat in that fabric would be nice. Then again, I need another peacoat like I need a hole in the head.

If Miller is out for an extended period of time, this wouldn’t be the first time this season that an elite goalie has been injured. Both the Devils and Canucks lost their franchise goalies earlier this year.  Both teams have done reasonably well while Lui and Brodeur were relegated to the press box. The Devils are currently holding onto the number 3 spot in the Eastern Conference, and the Canucks maintained their playoff positioning. The Sabres need to follow these examples and unite behind the backup goalie if they hope to keep a spot in the top 8 in the conference. I may be overly optimistic, but if Scott Fucking Clemmensen of all people can lead a team to the Top 3 of the conference, then the Sabres should be just fine behind Patty Lalime.

- Why was Mr.Held-Together-With-Spit-Bubblegum-And-The-Grace-of-God Connolly the only one to go after Gomez? Why Timmy and not Goose or Mairsy or Kaleta? The fragile shall lead them I guess.

I was also really intrigued by Lalime’s thoughts on opponents running Miller these past couple of games. Lalime has one of the best seats in the house, and if he’s noticing it, you can’t help but wonder why the other 20-something guys on the bench haven’t noticed it and done something about it. Lalime made the point that you would think something would be done about it, since they’re all in this together. If one team notices that liberties can be taken with the goalies, you bet your ass that other teams are going to notice.

- After seeing Miller leave the game, I really want to know now who the team’s emergency goaltender would be. C’mon, you know someone has to be able to strap on the pads and go.

- On the positive side, Jochen Hecht proved tonight that he wasn’t dead, just resting these last couple of games. It’s about darn time he showed up on the scoresheet.

- Stay tuned for a post later this week detailing my experience at the Paul Gaustad signing at Dave and Adam’s. If you behave yourselves, I may even share a picture.

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Letters To The Crowd

November 5, 2008

Dear Timmy,

Is it going to be physically possible for you to do hockey player-type things for consecutive days in a row? You play in two games this weekend, and then sit out practice today with groin problems. I know Lindy’s cutting you a little bit of slack, but good god man, this hurt/sore/tired/sleepy/bitchy/horny/hurt cycle has got to stop. We need you healthy and in the lineup.

Please play Friday.

Regards,

Shots Off The Crossbar

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Dear Jochen,

Welcome back to the fold. We missed you. Hopefully, you’ll be back on your line with Pommers and get him working again at increasing the population of Pominville. We need your calm, stoic presence on the bench and on the penalty kill.

Just don’t break anything else.

Regards,

Shots Off the Crossbar

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Dear Patrick,

Patty, Pat, Pat. We need to talk. Come over here and sit next to me. Comfy? Good.

[smack upside the head]

I’m deeply distressed by your comments to Nick Mendola of WGR about your non-participation in this year’s election. You’re 22 years old. There’s absolutely no reason to plead ignorance about events in the political spectrum. Its really not that hard to stay in the loop these days. Talk to your parents and friends about their political leanings. Go online and check out the candidates’ positions. If you’re confused about democracy in general, have Adam Mair continue reading aloud from the pop-up version of Duck For President. I know that the pop-up duck may be a little scary for you and the rest of the youngins in the locker room, but keep listening to the story. You’ll learn a lot.

It’s your country too, sunshine. And with being from Buffalo originally, its not like voting is extra complicated for you. You have to go to your local polling place. Its not like you need to vote by absentee ballot. While you’re a good citizen (presumably) in every other aspect of your life, this is one area where you could improve.

Disappointed,

Shots Off the Crossbar

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Dear Ryan,

Thank you for cancelling out the sheer idiocy of Pat Kaleta by managing to sound like a reasonably well-informed intelligent voter. You also get bonus points for using multisyllabic words and formulating a clear analysis of the differences between President Bush, Senator McCain and President-elect Obama. I also liked your repeated mentions of not wanting to discuss who you voted for, though a careful reading between the lines could allow one to make an educated guess.

That sound you heard is my geeky little heart rejoicing in someone not being afraid to sound smart. Thank you.

Regards,

Shots Off the Crossbar

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Dear Sandra Lee,

Step away from the bronzer and the hair bleach. Your latest PSA for Share Our Strength shows you looking pretty rough. Your skin should not be the color of an Oompa Loompa, and your hair should not be bright blessed blond. In addition, your skin was looking a little leathery. Get thee some moisturizer.

“Keep it simple” just should be about the tablescape and menu, dear.

Regards,

Shots Off the Crossbar

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Semi-Live: Buffalo v. Dallas

January 25, 2008

I had no access to my computer last night, so my game notes were written the old-fashioned way: with a pen and paper. So please, keep that in mind as you read this. Now that I’m reading them over this morning, some of my spelling is atrocious. I’ve corrected my errors here, of course.

- Roby looked really uncomfortable during the pregame show with Paul Hamilton. I’m not sure if it was due to a lack of comfort factor with Paul, or just a lack of comfort with the hosting role in general. It make for some awkward moments, not including Paul’s Space Jame tie. Hee.

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Buffalo – Philly: Take 2

December 22, 2007

What an absolutely amazing hockey game. Both teams were not afraid to throw the body, both teams had multiple brain farts that resulted in the other team having scoring opportunities, both goalies played phenomenally, and the game went into a shootout. If more games were played with this level of intensity and drama, hockey would be a more popular sport in the USA.

- Hecht proved once again that he’s worth every penny of the contract extension he signed earlier this season. He scored the game winner last night and the game tying goal tonight. (I did catch that Lindy had four forwards and a Spacek on the ice for the game tying goal. Risky, but effective.)

- What was Marty yapping at Goose about? He went after Goose immediately in the second period. Kudos to Goose for not taking the Marty bait.

- Philly gets a round of applause for getting two shorthanded goals in 55 seconds. Two shorthanded goals in one game is a feat in itself, let alone two shorthanded goals that quickly. Richards’ shortie was an absolutely beautiful goal. He was the trailer on the play, and Miller made the save on the first shot, but the rebound went right to Richards, who half wristed-half slapped it past Miller.

- Miller’s third save in the shootout was the kind of save I love seeing goalies make and be successful at. The total body sprawling-limb-flailing save is one of the wildest out there, but when it works, its a good thing. Miller’s – and the team’s – dance of joy after the game was really cute to see. I don’t think I’ve seen Miller ever smile so wide before.

- Andrew Peters time on ice watch: tonight’s game showed a 300% increase over last night. Peters was on the ice for a whole 1:33. I would be willing to bet that some of his teammates had shifts that were longer than 1:33.

- The intermission feature about what to get Lindy for Christmas was pretty cute. As someone who loves to hear about the inner workings of the team, something like that did shed a little bit of light about Lindy and what his players think of him. They obviously think he has bad taste in ties, needs to lighten up (which was a little ironic coming from Crunchy of all people), likes dry erase markers (and throwing them apparently) and drawing on the dry erase board. Goose’s gift ideas of a mustache trimmer / comb, Patches thought about a car and Peters’ idea of his rookie card were just goofy enough to be the kind of thing you actually do give at a workplace gift exchange. Ok, maybe not so much the car.

- I have to go watch it later, but one of the Sabres message boards said that HNIC’s Satellite Hotstove mentioned that the NHL might be back on ESPN next year. ESPN’s realizing the upswing of the NHL in the USA. Apparently, the NHL section of ESPN.com gets more hits than other sections, including NASCAR. I know that stat doesn’t mean much, since a “hit” isn’t a clear term, and other things like unique visitors, time spent etc, determine popularity, but maybe the sport will finally get off the ultimate fighting-fishing-hunting channel.

Now we all settle into the Christmas break. I hope the Sabres relax, heal (Timmy and Staffy) and have a happy Christmas with their families and/or each other. They next play Ottawa on Boxing Day. Lets hope that holiday name is not oddly prophetic.

And finally…

You know Marty, that’s not a very nice thing to do to Pommerdoodle. Even if he did try to gnaw on your skates. Some pommerdoodles have been known to have a shoe fetish when left unsupervised.*

* I was reading dog ads at petfinder.com and the “shoe fetish when left unsupervised” came from the ad of a very young basset hound. I’ve fallen in love with the phrase.

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