Thursday, March 10, 2011

Goalie: A Breed Apart

I was approached today by a fan of the site, one puck buddy Bob, and asked if I would do a post listing some crazy goalies. I have decided since no one has ever asked me specifically to do a post on something I better do it!

Here is some personal background. A couple Sundays ago I played a men's league game. I'm a goalie. The team I played for decided it might be fun to never take the man in front, and not play defence but just watch as the opposing team was given scoring chance after scoring chance. I knew the only way I was going to get any help that night was to help myself. So in the spirit of Billy Smith and Ron Hextall and other greats I played a chippy game. I was whacking guys, slashing guys, hell I even thought about hip checking a guy when he came in on a breakaway! I got a couple texts after the game from friends on the opposing team. I even ran into one at a gala event this past Sunday. "You slashed me pretty good there." he said, and my response "I sure did."

Now I'm riled up. Lets take a quick trip down memory lane. Aw hell, lets just make this story number 8 in my list of Crazy Goalies. Not really in a particular order. I tried not to include the cliches, hence the top 8 list. I don't need to tell you how insane Billy Smith and Ron Hextall are.

#10 Dan Moser

Never one to shy away from contact Dan Moser has always been a goalie who would much rather take things into his own hands than have a skater on his team intervene. In his first game playing roller hockey in Edmonton as a 17-year-old the first shot of the game was a routine glove save. As the player who shot the puck skated by Moser the player gave him a slash, not a hard one mind you, to his outstretched catching hand. A harmless play to most, but this rookie net-minder decided this was his time to set a precedent in the league, he was not a goalie to be messed with. Moser threw the puck from his catcher, followed the skater to the corner and gave him a nice two-hander to the back of the leg. A fracas broke out as players paired up and was the dust was settled offsetting penalties were announced and Moser received 2 minutes for slashing, and surprisingly was allowed to remain in the game, which his team went on to win. Needless to say, Moser's point had been made and his crease was avoided by opposing players for the rest of the season.

This particular slash has been named the Mos-Axe by Moser's teammates and to this day you can hear calls from his team's bench yelling: "Give him the Mos-Axe Mo!

#9 Jamie McLennen

After surrendering 5 goals in a playoff game against the Detroit Red Wings, Calgary Flames Goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff needed a break, enter backup goalie Jamie McLennen. His first touch of the puck was a wild attempt to play the puck behind his net and then for some reason he decided to give Johan Franzen a nice hard slash to the midsection, a place where padding can be limited. McLennen was ejected from the game and given a slashing penalty, and Kiprusoff was forced to reenter the game to clean up. A rather stupid gesture from a guy whose only job was to let Kipper rest every now and then. What was his intention? To hurt a Wing for the next game in the series? Perhaps he was just letting us know that his time in the NHL was up. I do not believe McLennen played another game.

#8 Mike Smith

Long before he was a Dan Ellis problem (from the famous twitter meme: #DanEllisProblems) Mike Smith was an Aaron Voros problem. In this clip Smith takes a hard whack to Voros' knee (a personal favorite of mine) before giving him two shots from behind with the blocker and then covering the puck. He then procedes to feed Voros a catcher shot and then drops the gloves and goes with him for a bit. A classic case of a goalie deciding he needed to stand up for himself because no one else was getting the job done. Neither one of these guys plays very much in the NHL anymore.

#7 Dwayne Roloson

A goaltender whose stick work is a little underrated, probably because this cagey veteran knows how to get away with a slash or two. In this clip with the play seemingly dead Columbus Blue Jacket tough guy Boll falls right on top of Roloson. He immediately lets Boll know he is in the wrong by jumping on him and exploding in a fury of punches, before doing the enforcer a favour by not finishing him off with his blocker. After the rough stuff passes Roloson decides to stay in Boll's face and let him know exactly what he did wrong, and what he should be ready to expect if he comes close again.

#6 Jack

Who Jack is, I don't know. What level he plays at, I have no clue. Where he is now, beats me. All I know is I like this kid's swagger. Remember kids, when the puck is covered, it's covered.

#5 Sean Burke/Garth Snow

This really has more to do with one Matthew Barnaby, who is a squid in his own right. Above he goes right after Sean Burke and proceeds to get his face punched in by the goaltender. Bellow Barnaby fakes an injury, has the training staff come out to the ice, and then jumps goalie Garth Snow, who is now the General Manager of the New York Islanders. On the plus side, Barnaby recently said he was going to donate his brain to science (a "no brainer" he said, I wonder if he got the word play?) so one day maybe we will know what exactly he was thinking then he jumped these to tendys who have never been shy to fight.

#4 Justin Pogge

Pogge, Pogge, ring any bells? He won the World Juniors for Canada, wore his hat sideways for the celebration. He was so good in fact that the Toronto Maple Leafs decided to trade Tuukka Rask to the Boston Bruins for a bag a pucks. Good move...... Anyway Pogge clearly did not like the goal that was scored on him. He pushes a player out of the way, screams at the ref, gets kicked out of the game, knocks the net over, and smashes his stick. Say what you want about Pogge's skill (he will never be an NHL goaltender) but the guy knows how to throw a tempter tantrum. That must be why the Leafs traded Rask, no way he can top that......right? Right?

#3 Tuukka Rask 

The shootout, in this case the goalie's nightmare. Rask, who currently plays for the Bruins, and quite well I might add did not like the calls made on the shootout goals he surrendered this night. Say what you will about the Leafs scouting/drafting, but man do they like some crazy when it comes to young goaltenders!

The first one should have been called dead, and the second one Rask believes went of the post. Rask screams at the ref, attempts to destroy his stick and trips before kicking in the doorway he enters. The piece de resistance comes when Rask leaves and then hurls a milk crate on the ice, which begs the question: what the hell is a milk crate doing in the pathway from the ice to the baby Bruins dressing room?

Just to clarify, the list stops at 3 because Billy Smith and Ron Hextall took crazy to a whole new level. I suggest checking out some of their clips if you have a chance. These guys were leg breakers!

So who did I miss? What events should I have included?

Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Official Oiler Spill Podcast: Episode Four: Enter Dickie "Dunn" Shilling

Here it is FINALLY Episode Four

My guest is the only Flames blogger worth reading, though it's ben a while since he blogged, Richard Shilling of PST Free Hockey fame. We talk about the Flames and some other stuff, it's a fun one. Parts are dated but whatever. Also the first edition of the Boston Pizza Finger Cooking Rant, give cooking the finger tonight.

Hopefully you enjoyed Edmonton's Ipod, if your Ipod only has my voice on it.

InB4 the music was the best part.