Saturday, December 31, 2011

Dirty Dangle's Of The Year

After the voting process we took a picture together, but were photoshopped out.
2011 was a great year for the Dangle. We saw some great goals via toe drag, scoop, and between the legs - some a combination of both. Here are our Top 5 Dirty Dangle's of the Year and cheers to more to come in 2012.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Best Names From The 2012 World Juniors

"FEUK! Another goal against."
The World Junior Hockey Championships are where teenagers become household names, and we can't help but love some of the names we're hearing so far. Here are our favourite names from the 2012 World Juniors:

Zemgus Girgensons - Latvia
I have always dreamed of hooking up with an Eastern European woman and having her tell me I have a Zemgus Girgensons. Not just a cool name, the 17-year-old Girgensons is also a great player and he should be the first Latvian born player to be taken in the 1st round of the NHL Draft this June.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Brian Elliott: The Best Free Agent Signing?

After seeing how Brian Elliott played last season after being traded to the Colorado Avalanche I wondered if he was going to get another shot in the NHL. He looked horrible and reminded me of the Vesa Toskala days in Toronto. In the 12 games he played with the Avalanche he let in 44 goals with a GAA of 3.83 and an ugly save percentage of .891. So far this year in 18 games he has only allowed 30 goals and leads the league with a sparkling GAA of 1.63. He is also among the league leaders in save percentage with .940 which ranks him 2nd behind Tim Thomas and his 4 shutouts have him tied for the league lead.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

30 Teams: Players To Watch For In The World Juniors

Our buddy Ben who is living out in B.C these days chasing West Coast tail sent this our way. 
You might agree with Ben, but if not and you feel the urge to chirp him, shoot him an email
Anaheim Ducks: American Emerson Etem, almost reached his rookie totals (4 points away) in less than half the games. Drafted 29th overall in 2010, Emerson should be a force for Team USA. Will also be happy not to be staying in Buffalo these holidays.

Boston Bruins: It might be hard for Leafs fans to cheer for a Bruins player from the Phil Kessel trade. But look for Canadian D-man Dougie Hamiltion to be one of the top players at this tournament.

Buffalo Sabres: Finish player Joel Armia is a huge power forward that could potentially dominate this tournament. Taken 16th overall in 2011, the Sabres haven't had a player with this offensive upside since Tomas Vanek.

Calgary Flames: Bill Arnold was drafted in the 4th round in 2010. The American has 20 points (same total as last year) in 18 games (compared to 39 last year). Look for him to chip in some points for red, white and blue.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!

With the Christmas break currently on in the NHL and no hockey for two days, it's a good time to relax with family and step away from the computer. But while you're relaxing, you can always talk hockey, so here are some topics you could discuss while crushing that rum and eggnog.

  • The Leafs are in the playoffs at the Christmas break for the first time in 6 years. 
  • The Florida Panthers are leading the Southeast division, with a nice cushion over the Winnipeg Jets and the salary cap leading Washington Capitals.
  • Tim Thomas and Tuukka Rask are at it again, as the Boston Bruins have a league low 62 goals against in 33 games, while their offence ranks 2nd with 116 goals for. So much for a hangover. 
  • The Los Angeles Kings with their $63.5M salary cap have the lowest goals scored in the NHL. In 35 games, they've only scored 73 goals. 
  • Sidney Crosby's 12 points in 8 games still has him ranked 256th overall in scoring. 
  • Erik Karlsson is the new Mike Green, at age 21, he leads the NHL in defensive scoring with 4 goals and 29 assists. 
  • Tyler Seguin is a great prospect, but who would have predicted he'd be leading the league at this point in +/- with +26?
  • Alex Ovechkin is on pace for 27 goals and 59 points this year. I'm glad I took him 1st overall in my fantasy pool. 
  • You would think it's the playoffs the way Johan Franzen is playing. Not known for his huge regular seasons, he has 30 points and a league leading 6 game winning goals. 
  • Eric Staal, one of last year's NHL All-Star Captains, is a league worst -21 this season. 
  • Did anyone think Ryan Nugent-Hopkins was going to become a point-per-game player this season? Well he is... and he's only 18. 
Have a great Christmas and don't drink and drive. Cheers.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Dirty Dangle 2012 World Junior Hockey Pool

It's that time of year again! World Juniors are in full swing and the weight of a nation is put on teenagers! If that isn't exciting enough for you, we present you with the 2012 Dirty Dangle World Junior Hockey Pool!

This year we actually have prizes to give out and with the talent competing over the next 2 weeks it should be a great tournament to watch, so why not sign up a team to make it a little more interesting?

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Players You Won't Be Seeing At The World Juniors

Just like last year, 1 out of 3 ain't bad.
There will be a few players at the 2012 World Junior Hockey Championships with some NHL experience that you'll want to keep an eye on. Most notably, Brett Connolly and Devante Smith-Pelly who were loaned by their NHL clubs to join Team Canada. There are a few other players that got a taste of the NHL before being sent back to junior or their club team such as Mark Scheifele and Mika Zibanejad who will be representing their countries this holiday season as well. But as usual, it who's not at the tournament that receives the most talk from hockey fans. There are always standout under-20 players in the NHL who are just too valuable to their teams to be released for 3 weeks of play. Last year there were some notables staying in the big league, and surprisingly, some still remain on that list.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Predicting the Ron Wilson Firing Date

It's never a good sign when your head coach actually looks like a professional golfer.
The Maple Leafs started the season hot and as per usual many Leaf fans were getting excited and taking screen shots of the NHL standings when they sat at #1 in the league. But as many people predicted the Leafs and their brutal penalty killing would start slipping to the middle of the pack in the Eastern Conference.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Shanny Claus' Naughty And Nice Lists

It's been quite the season for Brendan Shanahan and we're not even at the halfway mark. He's brought accountability to the NHL's disciplinary decisions with his video explanations for suspensions and even for non-suspensions. Some have praised him for his Shanabans, while others remain confused and angered over his decisions (looking at you Montreal). Regardless, Sheriff Shanahan is bringing a fresh take on handling suspensions and while you may not agree with them, at least you know why a player was disciplined.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Sunday Recovery

After an eventful Saturday of hockey (and probably heavy drinking), it's time to relax and recover with some light reading and highlights from this past week in the hockey world.
Sadly, no Santa's Little Helpers for Max Talbot this HBO 24/7 
Really lazy Sunday on our end today. Here's a few links we enjoyed reading this week and some hilarity from Joffrey Lupul on tourism in Buffalo. Cheers. 

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Craziest Things We've Seen At Hockey Games

Yesterday, a stinky story emerged out of the New England Senior Hockey League. A man pooped in the hockey glove of an opponent and has subsequently been banned for life. This is probably the first instance of a hockey player taking a dump in a glove - an assumption we hope is true. The player is Zung Nguyen, which may or not be an alias Brad Marchand uses when he plays mens league hockey  (he is a shit disturber after all). While this is by far the craziest thing we've ever heard of happening at a hockey game, we've seen some pretty messed up stuff in our long, amateur careers.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas Trees Around The NHL

We pretended that we were with MTV Cribs and were able to get some tours of NHL players houses just before Christmas. It was what you expected, lots of water and fruit in the fridge, nice cars in the driveway, and massive TVs. One thing we did notice was just how different the Christmas trees in each home were. While expecting your traditional evergreen, we were surprised to see how the different NHLers celebrated this holiday tradition. Here's what we saw:

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Canada's World Junior Team Is Set

What do you think of this roster?

Wax Stain Rookie: One Year

Wax Stain Wednesday is a regular feature on Dirty Dangle. Our pal Dave at Wax Stain Rookie is an avid autograph and card collector and has some amazing experiences to share with us. WARNING: these posts may make you want to buy a Beckett and get those dusty hockey cards out from under your bed that you hide from your girlfriend like a secret porn collection.
Almost 17 years ago I wrote my first fan letter. It was to my favourite player at the time and probably one of my favourites of all-time, Bill Guerin. I mailed away my letter and his rookie card along with two dollars for return postage in the hopes he would sign it for me. I honestly don’t remember how long it took to get back to me, but after a few months it arrived and I couldn’t believe it. He held and signed that card which I still treasure to this day. His best years were still ahead of him at the time, and I predicted he would be a dominant force in the NHL. My only regret is his finest NHL seasons weren’t with NJ, but I can say his performance (3 points all assists) in the Cup clinching game in 95 will always be my favourite game of his.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Here Come The Sedin's

After a slowish start to the season in which we thought they might have switched jerseys, the Sedins are really picking it up now and could both be on top of the scoring race by this time next week. While among the favourites to lead the league, the Sedin's started the season at a point-per-game pace while others pulled ahead at Mario Lemieux-like numbers. But now, the Sedin's are rolling hot and the Canucks look to be the Western Conference juggernaut going 9-0-1 in their last 10.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Hoss Hall of Fame Induction: Gary Roberts

The Hoss Hall of Fame is an elite group of honoured Hosses who have powered their way through hockey with hard hits, thrilling fights, and offensive flair to be the complete package.
Gary Roberts is a scary, scary man and an easy selection for the Hoss Hall of Fame. Roberts was a tough kid who played hockey in the winter and lacrosse in the summer growing up in southern Ontario. Known for intensity, Roberts was a leader on any team he played for and could spark the team with a big hit, a clutch goal or a motivating fight. Some might say, he was too much man.

After a solid junior year with the Ottawa 67's in which he won the Memorial Cup, Roberts was drafted 12th overall by the Calgary Flames in the 1984 NHL Entry Draft. Roberts would play 2 more years in the OHL and win his 2nd Memorial Cup with the Guelph Platers in which he put up 31 points in 20 playoff games on their championship run. He would do his time in the AHL riding buses for half a year before becoming a full time player during the 1987-88 season. In his first full season, Roberts was a physical force on the ice hitting everything that moved and fighting anyone that stood in his way. He racked up what would be his career high penalty minutes in a season with 282 PIMs that year. The following year he would go on to win the Stanley Cup with the Flames and lift the Stanley Cup with a strong supporting cast of young players like Doug Gilmour, Joe Nieuwendyk, Al MacInnis and Theo Fleury.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sunday Recovery

After an eventful Saturday of hockey (and probably heavy drinking), it's time to relax and recover with some light reading and highlights from this past week in the hockey world.
Excellent work by theScore.
Thanks to a friendly phone call from Tyler Seguin last night, I remembered to set my alarm clock to roll out this post before dinnertime. Whether your hungover or exhausted from holiday shopping, take a break and catch up on some of our favourite reads from the past week. 

Friday, December 9, 2011

Tim Thomas Is A Well-Travelled Man

Tim Thomas has logged many miles throughout his career, more than any Vezina winning goalie should. Just look at the above map and you'll see he's a well-travelled man. By looking at him you might think he's trying to sell you a vacuum or car insurance, but he was touching down in all these cities to play hockey. His resume reads 4 countries, 8 leagues, 11 teams, and 1 amazing story.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Hockey Holiday Shopping Ideas

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins on Christmas morning last year
Not sure what to get that hockey fan in your life for the holidays? Can't afford tickets? Don't like when they wear hockey jerseys out to dinner? Sometimes you have to get a little creative with these gift ideas as hockey fans are a unique bunch. Here are some one of a kind ideas that will really bring some smiles this holiday season:

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Wax Stain Rookie: Jarome Iginla

Wax Stain Wednesday is a regular feature on Dirty Dangle. Our pal Dave at Wax Stain Rookie is an avid autograph and card collector and has some amazing experiences to share with us. WARNING: these posts may make you want to buy a Beckett and get those dusty hockey cards out from under your bed that you hide from your girlfriend like a secret porn collection.
Well the last post and this post are related in many ways even though the players are decades apart in age. Both were/are Right Wingers, both made the Hockey News top 20 at that position of all-time, and both signed their own “cards” rather than the one I sent.

Jason Bateman: 2-on-0 Specialist

Last night while watching the Blues/Wings game with a friend we got into a little debate after witnessing Jimmy Howard stop a 2-on-0 against T.J Oshie and Vladimir Sobotka. I had said how scary it would be for a goalie to face a 2-on-0. It's just really unfair as the two players could make you look silly. But he argued that the two players would be facing a lot of pressure and might overthink what they are doing. You're kind of expected to score on those right? Then it was brought up that Jason Bateman scored one of the dirtier 2-on-0 goals in hockey history thanks to the intro to Valerie's Family: The Hogan Family. Just take a look:

Monday, December 5, 2011

Was Alex Ovechkin on Steroids?

Like most Monday's at work I start my day reading hockey blogs and drinking lots of Pepsi (I'm just not a coffee guy). Today there was a post by the loveable Ryan Lambert of Puck Daddy squashing an Alex Ovechkin steroid accusation. A columnist named John Steigerwald, who writes for the Observer-Reporter thinks the main reason for Ovechkins lack of goal scoring is because of lack of PEDs.

NHL All-Star Campaigns You Probably Won't See

It's that time of year again when teams and players combine to make jerky All-Star Game campaigns in which they push for your vote to get them into the NHL All-Star Game. They range from hilarious attack ads to this recent video featuring Carey Price. The description of the video reads: "Carey Price draws inspiration from Jean Dujardin's classic French flick Brice de Nice for his 2012 All-Star campaign.", but we still have no idea what is going on.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Hey Mikhail Grabovski, It's O.K. To Have An Off Year

A few weeks ago, Mike Brophy wrote an article about Mikhail Grabovski and what sort of pay day he should be expecting this summer when he becomes a UFA. Yes, it seems the Leafs will try their best to lock him up as he could be considered the top centre on the team right now, but there will be some interest out there from other teams if he doesn't re-sign with the Maple Leafs before July 1st.

Friday, December 2, 2011


WTF will be a regular feature in which we vent our frustration or admiration on player and team performances during the season that leave us baffled and dropping Bruce Boudreau f-bombs.
Roberto leads the league in doors opened with 127
Everyone loves a good rant and we find ourselves freely talking about the play of certain players or teams in the NHL throughout the season on a daily basis. Here are a few common rants you might be hearing about at this point in the season:

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Mini Sticks At Maple Leaf Gardens Anyone?

Yesterday the old shrine of hockey opened up as a Loblaws and up to 300 people lined up get the first sneak peek inside. As a lifelong Maple Leaf fan I will probably go check it out and will also want to see what the third floor Ryerson University ice rink will look like when it opens up in the spring.

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