So much has happened over the last two days that it feels like a week has gone by. As you know, because everyone who follows hockey knows, Greg Jamison was unable to meet the January 31st deadline of the lease agreement with the City of Glendale. It’s been reported that he called Shane Doan personally to let him know that he is still in the hunt, (get it? Join The Hunt?) and that he is still working to purchase the team. At this point, it means reworking a lease agreement with the current Mayor Jerry Weiers. Weiers, coming off as a bit of a media whore, made the rounds of our local shows. I heard a lot of harrumphing from him in each appearance as he tried to play both sides of the fence. Somehow he is both “confident that the team will stay” while also assuring that Glendale won’t have to spend any money. Huh? Okay Buds, good luck with that plan. So, we are all back in our familiar place, waiting, waiting, waiting for someone to step up and buy our beloved team. Oh and all that stuff about other interested groups? Like most of you, I’m holding my breath on that one. ‘Cause the Easter Bunny. And Santy Claus. The only reason I’m giving it even the tiniest mention here is because Craig Morgan reported it and he’s good people.
Now that I’ve covered that mess, let’s chat about the other mess; the game against the Stars in Dallas. Well, it wasn’t as much of a “mess” as a “meh.” A tie is like kissing your sister, and she’s no Megan Fox.
Some good things happened; Hanzal got his groove back and was playing real Coyotes hockey. He chipped in a pair of goals and finally used his big body to muscle his way around the ice. Vrbs, also got a goal which looked more like it should have been credited to Jamie Benn’s inner calf but hell, he’ll take it. Smitty was back too but not faring nearly as well as Hanzal. In the first period, he let in one out of only two shots for a pretty crappy save percentage. But as the game chugged along, he seemed to exhibit a bit more swagger and confidence. I think he just needs a few more games under his belt to get back into the swing of things. The off season is an awfully long time for a goalie to be off and playing mini sticks with his little man during the lock out didn’t exactly get him game ready.
So off we went to a shoot out where Vrbs scored for us with his trademark forehand-backhand-top shelf shot which is still fooling goalies league wide for some crazy reason. Really? Does no one watch tapes? Anyway, the goal proved too little against the Stars as Jamie Benn scored; with a little help from Smitty. And Jagr, who was pretty much contained and quiet in this game, scored too; again with a little help from Smitty.
Really Mikey? Close your legs. M’kay?
In a quick turnaround, we’ll see the Stars here tonight. The keys will be the same. Stupid flukey goals go in against Lehtonen so don’t wait for the perfect shot. Make it ugly, the uglier the better. Just get those pucks on net. Tonight marks the return of Raffi Torres and I’m really looking forward to seeing what kind of hockey he’ll play. Will he be tentative and hesitant? Will the refs, who’ve been so horribly unfair to us already this season, have him in their focus? My thought is this; he’ll come out quietly in the first handful of games until he’s confident that he can play his tough brand of hockey without costing the team.