Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Canadiens Meltdown Continues!!

Could we see a Stanley Cup playoffs without the three Eastern Canadian teams? We know Ottawa and Toronto won’t be having players taken in a playoff draft and the way Montreal is playing they will be on the outside looking in as well.
The Habs looked absolutely brutal in losing 5-2 to Toronto. What has happened to this team that looks a lot like the team that brought so much excitement to Montreal last year and had so many thinking the 100th anniversary season might be special. This 100th anniversary season is starting to look like the team won’t even qualify for the playoffs. The only thing preventing Montreal from not being in a playoff spot this morning is the fact Florida let one get away against Columbus and lost 3-1.
Speaking of Canadian teams soiling the linen, the Canucks did that in Phoenix. With a chance to move within a point of Northwest leading Calgary, Vancouver didn’t look great in losing to Phoenix.
Sad news from the NHL on Saturday night. Walt Poddubny—remember him Leaf and Oiler fans??? He collapsed and died at his sisters home in Ontario at the age of 49.
Juha Metsola missed Game 1 of the Lethbridge-Saskatoon series as the Hurricanes goalie was still suffering effects from a concussion suffered last week. Metsola was back guarding the goal for Game 2 of the series and he left the Blades with a headache as the Canes even the series up with a 5-2 win. Zach Boychuk was the story in this one as he had the hat-trick along with setting up one other. Maybe that wasn’t the story. The story was the attendance or lack of it in my mind for the opening two games. A crowd of just over 5600 took in the contest. C’mon Saskatoon---what are you waiting for. You have wanted a winner and Lorne Molleken has provided it. Get out there for Game 5 and any other home games during this playoff run.
Matt Lowry and Andrew Clark each had a goal and an assist as Brandon beat Kootenay 4-1 to take a 2-0 lead in that best of 7 with the two teams heading all the way to Cranbrook now for Games 3 and 4. Medicine Hat evened up its best of 7 with Swift Current with a 6-2 win. Brennan Bosch had a pair for the Tigers.
In the West, can Prince George just run up the white flag. The Cougars were beaten 9-1 by Vancouver meaning they were outscored 17-3 in the first two games. Every Giant with the exception of defenceman Nolan Toigo got on the scoresheet. Kelowna beat Kamloops 5-1 to take a 2-0 lead in that series. The other series are even at 1 as Seattle edged Spokane 2-1 and Everett got by Tri-Cities 3-2.
The end of the Gonzaga-Western Kentucky game was a prime reason as to why I love the NC double A mens basketball tournament. Western Kentucky hung with the heavily favoured Zags throughout and with seven seconds left tied the game sending the team into a state of delirium. However Gonzaga freshman point guard Dmitri Goodson ran the length of the floor and laid one in with .9 seconds to play sending Gonzaga to the Sweet 16 with an 83-81 win in what arguably was the best game of the tournament.
Want to go to a game at the brand new Yankee Stadium this year and if the answer is yes, do you want great tickets. If you want to buy a front-row seat at the new Yankee Stadium for an individual game, the list price of a ticket is $2,625. Individual game sales for the first season of the $1.5 billion ballpark start Tuesday, and the Legends Seats that ring the infield start at $525 a game, according to the team's Web site. Those seats cost $500-$2,500 as part of full season tickets, and they include food and soft drinks. On the top deck, seats in the Jim Beam Suite go for $130-$150. Terrace seats are $50, $75 and $85, and grandstand tickets cost $23 and $30. Full view bleachers are $14. A trip to the old ballpark isn’t what it used to be. I remember back when the Pioneer League was in existence with teams in Medicine Hat, Lethbridge, Great Falls and Billings. My dad and I made a couple of trips to watch players as they started their quest towards the majors. We saw a few guys who ended up being major leaguers. Guys like Lloyd Moseby, Candy Maldonado, Darren Daulton, Sid Fernandez and Raul Mondesi.
I also used to love to head to John Ducey Park in Edmonton when I worked in Peace River to go watch the Trappers who at that time were the Triple A team for many different major league clubs. I remember when the California Angels came to the park for an exhibition game and I also remember Ron Kittle (remember him) hitting one that I swear was still going up in the air when it cleared the light standard in left field. He must have hit that ball 600 feet. It’s the longest homer I’ve ever seen hit. I also remember going to a game there one year and heading to my car which was parked in a lot what I thought was well behind the right field fence. A buddy and I got to my car to find the car beside us had a souvenir---a ball that had gone through the windshield and was sitting amongst the shards in glass in his passenger seat. Oops!!

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