Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Playoff Traditions

Clearly, there was no post yesterday if you tuned into Hockey Blog In Canada. This was due to my hard drive completely crapping out on me. Technology is wonderful when it works, but I felt seriously disconnected when I discovered that my hard drive decided that it wanted to quit the HBIC team. As the head of HBIC, I understand that Mr. Hard Drive may want to retire and ride off into the electronically-formatted sunset, but he's got a lot of my stuff with him, and I want it back. In other words, guess what I'll be doing while the NHL Playoffs are on TV in the background?

I did have some fun yesterday, though. I was interviewed by Shannon Proudfoot of the Ottawa Citizen regarding playoff rituals and traditions. There are a pile of playoff rituals that hockey fans and players get to experience - the playoff beard, the Detroit octopi, and the "Sea of Red" in Calgary, for example.

I'm curious to see what other playoff traditions may be out there. I'm aware of Vancouver's Towel Power, Winnipeg's White-Out (now Phoenix's White-Out), and Philly's Orange Crush, but there have to be others. Let me know in the comment section, and I'll check them out!

Playoff Pool: The PLAYOFF LINE POOL is shaping up to be a solid contest. If you're still interested in getting in on it, you have until 6PM CST today. The rules are as follows:

1. Select three forwards, two defencemen, and one goaltender from any of the playoff teams. They may all be from different teams, or any combination of players from one team.
2. Goals and assists are worth one point each. Goaltender wins are worth two points. Goaltender shutouts are worth five points.
3. Players will be "removed" from your line as they are eliminated from the playoffs.
4. The entrant with the highest point total at the end of the playoffs will win SCHWAG!
5. Send your picks into

Get your picks in for a chance to win free hockey-related merchandise!

International News: The Canadian women defeated Finland 4-2 on Wednesday to guarantee themselves a spot in the gold medal game on Saturday. Sarah Vaillancourt potted a couple of goals while Jayna Hefford and Katie Weatherston each had singles. Hayley Wickenheiser had three assists in the game.

With Finland having defeated the Americans 1-0 in overtime earlier this week, the Americans need to win against Canada in order to push the Finns into the bronze medal game. If the Americans lose, they will play for the bronze while the Finns will play Canada for the gold medal.

Canada brought home another gold medal on Saturday, April 5 thanks to the National Sledge Hockey team! Canada defeated Norway in the gold medal game by a 3-2 score to claim its first World Championship since 2000, and the win came in dramatic fashion as the Canadians scored with nine seconds left to secure the victory!

Billy Bridges opened the scoring in the championship game by scoring his seventh goal of the tournament at the 7:52 mark of the first period. However, Bridges was ejected from the game at the end of the first period for spearing Norway's Rolf Einar Pedersen - a huge blow to the Canadian offensive game.

Kjell Vidar Royne beat Canadian goaltender Paul Rosen just 24 seconds into the second period on the powerplay to even the game at one goal apiece. The teams battled through the second period deadlocked at a 1-1 score.

Eskil Hagen beat Rosen 41 seconds into the third period, giving the Norwegians the lead for the first time in the game. The Canadians turned the pressure up on the Norwegians, though, and were rewarded as Adam Dixon scored his fifth goal of the tournament on the powerplay at 6:38.

As time wound down, Greg Westlake rattled a shot of the post. As it appeared that overtime would be necessary, Westlake scored just seconds after ringing the puck off the bar at the 14:51 mark, sealing the win for the Canadians.

The win gave Canada ownership of sledge hockey’s trifecta of the three biggest prizes in the sport: a gold medal at the Paralympic Winter Games (2006), at the World Sledge Hockey Challenge (2007), and now the IPC Sledge Hockey World Championship (2008).

Congratulations to the Canadian Sledge Hockey team! This writer is certainly proud of your achievements! And GO CANADA GO for the women!

Jersey News: Huge thanks goes out to Paul Lukas and his Uni Watch blog for this tidbit.

Advance word from an anonymous source regarding the new Team Canada hockey jerseys that will be released later this month for the World Championships: "Basically, it’s a ‘vintage’-style jersey that looks like something you’d buy a four-year-old. The white jerseys have red shoulders, which would look nice if it was done traditionally, but it comes off looking cheap. Same Canada crest as usual on the front, but cheapo little crests NOT on the shoulders but the elbow-area. Bad striping (you’ll see). Oh, and like all Nike stuff, it’s got the swoosh on the upper right chest. Overall it’s plain, in a bad way. The red jerseys are a little better, but it’s like comparing a pound of crap to a spoonful. In the end, they both stink."

I'll investigate this a little more to see what I can find. Keep your eyes here for more info on this new Canadian hockey jersey.

Ok, I have a pile of work to do, so I'm out. Remember that you need to have your pool picks in by 6PM CST if you haven't already entered!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!


Sage Confucius said...

The question is, are YOU going to grow a playoff beard. I'd personally love to see it. I can only let the hair on my legs grow, and I won't subject the residents of Nashville to that horror.

I will be at game 3 here on Monday night. I have no idea if the Preds have some kind of playoff tradition or whatnot, but I'll see what I can find out. I am quite certain that an octopus or two will make an appearance though.

Anonymous said...

Back in the old Cap Center Days, the Capitals would have white-outs in the playoffs.

With the last 3 regular season games this year, the Caps went to a Red Out...and it looks like the "Rock the Red" campaign has carried over into the playoffs.

I think the Caps fans' biggest playoff traditions are (1) praying that they don't go up 3-1 in a series and (2) praying that they stay out of the third 3 OT (losses to Isles, Pens and Lightning in 3 or 4 OT)

Anonymous said...

Mike Green wore the 'Hawk (mohawk) in the Hershey Bears Calder Cup the Caps and DC101 are having a "Rock the Hawk" playoff promotion, for those willing to get chopped at hair Cuttery

Jean Labonté said...

Kudos to you for keeping such a great blog on the great sport of hockey.

And many thanks for keeping people up-to-date on the sledge hockey results at the World Championships. Sledge hockey needs all the coverage it can get (it is a great sport) and you are helping make this sport more known, as it should be. And Sledhead will be coming out next fall, something to look for.

As the captain of the Canadian Sledge Hockey Team, I'd like to thank you on behalf of our team.