Thursday, June 1, 2006

Canes it be

So, let's see what we have here: a plucky Canadian team lead by some great goaltending and defence faces the third highest scoring team in the NHL from a newish Southern market known for their fairweather fans. Nope, the year isn't 2004 and this isn't Calgary versus Tampa Bay, but it's pretty damn close (both Finals even featured the flaming, overachieving Q-tip known as Mike Commodore, for good measure). To pull this off would also be the ultimate pressed hams to our lovable losers down in Calgary, making a Cup win in 2006 sweeter than all that came before it.

As for the new opponent, I'm not sure what to think. The Sabres have been my analagous Eastern version of the Oilers for years, and in the fall my fandom was rewarded with the bonus pleasure of watching them outclass Toronto at the HSBC Arena, in front of the blinking incomprehension of Leafs fans who thought they had a team good enough to cross the border for. That and its easier to deal with the contingency of losing the final round against a team whose city probably needs it more, and would appreciate it more, than any other city full of hard luck dwellers that I can think of. Open a bottle of wine, rent Vincent Gallo's tragic Buffalo 66 and have good cry for the poor city, if you have the time.

Alas, Buffalo ran out of defenceman, almost all six of them, and it finally caught up to them at the worst time (for Oilers fans, anyway) , late in the last period of the seventh game. In place of a decimated Sabres club, Sacamano at BoA thinks that the Hurricanes will make for a better series. Being an Oilers fan who doesn't suffer other good teams very well, I will always take the easiest route to a Stanley Cup, be it a straight boring line of a four game sweep against a hobbled team, just as long as Edmonton wins. I have no interest in whether that blowhard sunglasses guy on Toronto's THE FAN 590 thinks the NHL's final four has been "bad for hockey," as if the league's survival depended on a Rangers/Kings final. Truth is, the league's already kind of in the toilet, my team's in the final and quite likely won't be for another 20 years, so I want to make this being drunk-for-a-week thing as smooth as possible.

As for Carolina, I think I should do some more homework. What I do know thus far, possibly outdated: they have some real offence spread over three lines; a bunch of guys named Adams just to keep the Oilers guessing; some possibly good, inconsistent goaltending in Sherwood Parkian, Cam Ward; and most importantly, a mediocre defence that can give up chances. If defence wins the Cup, and the Oilers play like they did for 3/4 of the season, I cautiously like our chances. If we sit on our asses all series and let Carolina's forwards do a better job of getting shots on net, something a much less-potent Ducks were unable to, we may be screwed. It's only now that I wish I'd watched more Canes games on Centre Ice!

Av
é Canes fans, and good luck to all 200 of you (of which 50 are apparently hardcore bloggers)!

18 comments:

DrFrankLives said...

Fairweather, my ass.

Bring it on, Edmonton.

mike w said...

He he. The Gauntlet has been dropped.

But will the rest of Carolina hear it drop amongst the shitty din of Nascar...er, cars? I doubt it.

I want to see Doug Weight and Glen Wesley cry like little babies after they lose!

Coluch said...

Good Seats at RBC: $280 USD
Beer & Food: $150 easy
Flight to Raleigh: $240 USD
Alternative 13hr drive X 2: $260 CDN
Hotel room: $100 USD

Approximate cost to see some Shiticanes fans experience some real playoff hockey: $800 CDN

I really wish Buffalo had won. It would've been many hundreds of dollars cheaper.

Coluch said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Coluch said...

Sorry for double posting, but this is like, my only outlet to share the Oil love. Check out this playoff comparison!

'06 Playoffs----EDM-----CAR
Goals For-------54------54
Goals Against---42------44
PPG-------------19------22
PP%-------------19.8----25.9
PPGA------------13------15
PK%-------------88.6----83.7
Avg PIM---------16.4----12.3

DrFrankLives said...

mike w - here's a hint, find new smack. the NASCAR stuff and the you don;t know hockey stuff? Played. Tired. Unoriginal. Jim Rome would hang up on you.

Anonymous said...

I didn't realize you had to find new, groundbreaking ways to thrash talk other teams' fans. It did, however, goad you into a stinging reactionary comment... about Jim Rome?

I believe that makes it Oilers 1 - Whalers 0.

Randy in the Med Hizzo said...

Fellas, fellas, fellas, you both live of the hockey map, so just be happy.
You were both going broke before the lockout. Cam Ward, Commodore are from from Edmonton. Chris Pronger was a Whaler for about five minutes way back.
Also, this is possibly in bad taste... but the 'Canes-Oil matchup also sounds very Gulf of Mexico - esque, circa 2005.

mike w said...

Dr Frank,

Sports is the last refuge of bigotry, even for otherwise reasonable people. I had to mention NASCAR at least once, but you're right, it is tired and probably something unoriginal Red Wings fans jumped on four years ago.

My bias against southern/expansion teams is pretty much eroded away, anyway, and likely will go away completely if we win the Cup.

I still want to see Doug Weight cry.

DrFrankLives said...

Until last night, so did I. But all is now redeemed and forgiven.

Don;'t worry, y'all can come down and visit that big silver Iced Tea holder.

Also, Cam Ward will probably take it to his wedding this summer. You can visit it then.

I'll b there Monday night. Section 110, Row Z.

Here's to good hockey.

Zanstorm said...

I want to see Weight and Wesley cry too! Gad I hate Weight!
Wow. Still though, it should be a hell of a series. Nice stats, Coluch. So I guess the Oilers better stay out of the penalty box!
The Oils need to be ready. The Canes are so much better than the Ducks were in every area. I can see the Canes going in with more momentum early on, because damn, those Sabres were good!
I say Oilers take it in 7.

d-lee said...

Wow, Dr. Frank. You, too, sit near me. I'm in 112, row J. I missed the FedEx guy today, so I have to go later tonight to pick up my tickets.

I'm always hanging out at the Deck, or in the concourse outside 111 during intermissions.

Pleasure Motors said...

Discuss seating arrangments on your own damn blogs, usurpers.

GOILERS!!!!!

DowntownCowtown said...

Sweet Mother of Christ, my ever-lovin' Oilers are in the Stanley Cup Final. Just think about it: back in March every single one of us would have been happy to just see them ease out of the 1st round gracefully (give me a break - none of you, not a one, expected them to even get to the semis in your wildest dreams). And now this. Where in Mary's did this all come from? The last time this happened I still had hair. The next time it happens I could be using a walker...so I'm bound and determined to enjoy every damned minute of the wait between the two series.

Long layoffs and travel (just look at a map of NHL cities for Chrissakes!) have never, ever had a bearing on Oiler performance. So don't fret about the longish break. If a team ever needed a long break before the final battles it was our sick and thrashed ice soldiers.

Concerned about lucky beards, repetitive routines, emerging talismans and the order you put on your socks in the morning? Same thing. Don't worry about it. Wear a Flames jersey the next time you watch the game and it still won't matter a whit (OK, just to be safe though, I'll be wearing my '87 plain home logo t-shirt which has an 11-3 record during the post-season thus far).

Oilers playoffs impacting my professional life? Check.
Raising some troubling 'Jekyl & Hyde' questions from my wife and family? 'Fraid so.
Damaging my health (and especially) my liver? Yup. And I wouldn't have it any other way. Pathetic but true.

Wings? Sharks? Ducks? 'Canes?
Doesn't really matter who the club lines up against at this point. The only team that can beat Edmonchuk over 7 games is Edmonchuk.

The Oilers-'Canes match-upshould provide some great, fast shinny entertainment and there's some good Carolina/Edmonton connections. Weight was a stand-up loyal captain during the franchise's leanest years and I always liked the guy. Well, I always liked all of our el capitans, even back in the WHA.

Oilers in six, my faithful friends. It's been an agonizingly long wait and we have at least a 50% chance of sweet, sweet exctasy two weeks to come.

Ryan Smyth is the Second Coming of hockey, if not Jesus Christ himself.

Coluch said...

If THIS doesn't warrant a blog post, I don't know what does.

I applaud the ads, but find the "party with your pants ON" out of line. Nudity never hurt anyone.

Garnet said...

Whoever wins, the team's fans must break into the Hockey Hall of Fame and liberate the Avco Cup. Mike, Chris, you're already in Toronto; are you up for this mission?

mudcrutch79 said...

I'm actually thinking of making a run over to the HHOF and offering a steak to the Avco Cup.

bigleaguer said...

I thought the Avco Cup is sitting in Barry Shenkarow's garage in Winnipeg.