Tuesday, January 19, 2010

AHL All Star Wrap-up (Spoilers Ahead!)

Well, shit, that was actually the most fun ASG I've ever watched. If you're having to watch it on delay, stick with it. It gets really good at the end. I'll stick a photo here, but after that I'm talking about the game so don't read if you don't wanna know what happened yet.

That would be Alex Stalock, my new boyfriend, pictured there. Oh right, I promised Nicky I'd share. Okay, that's my new Half Boyfriend, Alex Stalock. I would like the bottom half please. Haha...

Anyway, so the skills competition was only so-so yesterday. It was complete retardation that Noreau wasn't in the hardest shot competition, unless he's hurt or something. And Anton went first in all the goalie-oriented events, which meant he was the guinea pig for the director figuring out the best cameras to use for the event. Never saw him very well.

But the game tonight really made up for it. It ended up tied and going to a shootout, with the Canadians pulling out a slim victory. And to get to the tie, it was a whole goalie-pulling situation and a near miss on an empty net and the whole shebang. Like real hockey!

Which is in stark contrast to earlier in the game where my inner goalie was screaming, "PLAYSOMEFUCKINGDEFENSE!" at all of them. I know that's just how all star games are, but you'd think if your being honored as one of the very best at what you do, you'd want to show why you're there. I guess they were saving it up for the end, eh? Like when Vishnevsky deflected the puck in on his own goalie. Dunderhead.

The most fun part of the night was, of course, watching goalies I don't get to see.

In the first period, I fell in temporary love with Alex Salak, the cocky little rookie up in Rochester, after he literally drop-kicked the puck halfway up the ice after making a stop. Who does that? But really neither he nor Bernier had a chance. Neither D was playing at all and all the forwards had fresh legs.

The second period, however, Justin Peters and Khudobin played and my goodness, Anton was terrific. The first period ended 5-2 for Planet USA, so obviously the Canadians were all in the room like, "You hosers need to get more pucks on the net, eh" and they came out firing on all cylinders.

They put 23 shots on Anton in that second period, at least half of them odd-man rushes, and he let in 3. It was looking a little dire at first because the first two goals came 13 seconds apart just 2 minutes in. The first one, however, wouldn't have counted in a real game as it was VERY clearly batted in with a high stick (McKenna agrees, thank you very much).

The second one was just brutal, but the rest of the time he was just stoning everybody. It was pretty phenomenal and he represented the Aeros and himself well.

And speaking of representing the team, I was pleased to see Max actually playing some real defense and still getting some shots on goal, though I think he hit the post about 5 times. I was hoping for a penalty so he could QB the PP and "work from home," but no dice. Silly ASG.

Anyway, Peters was in the other end and he stopped 9 of 11, and looked really impressive at times, but Anton just mopped the floor with those guys.

And then.... ahhh.... Stalock was in net for the third period. He started out the period by playing the puck a whole bunch. (Ka-ching!) and then made some huge glove saves (Ka-ching!) and then has that kind of upright stance and aggressive style like another goalie I adore (Kaaaa-ching!).

Oh mama, count me in on the Alex Stalock Bandwagon. And to think he wouldn't have been at the All Star Game at all if Neuvirth had been able to participate. Thank you for being hurt, Varly!

Anyway, it was an exciting finish so if you missed it, be sure and check for a replay of it somehwere (try 5 p.m. Friday on NHL Network). Pretty fun stuff, especially if you like to goalie-watch. It's like a buffet of the best goalies in the AHL. What could be better?

The end was great too, with the always-buzzing PK Subban (who made me a fan tonight as well by really embracing the experience and being a total attention whore for the cameras.... please don't squash the joy out of this guy, Montreal!) racing to his home goalie, Desjardins, to celebrate the win. *squee* Goalie nuzzle!

Alright, enough of that. Got a good Quick Hits post percolating in my head for tomorrow that will include a drawing. Aren't you intrigued? I might draw boobies or something. You just never know with me.

In honor of the Canadian All Stars win:


JSM  January 20, 2010 at 9:35 AM  

I couldn't agree more! What a great game.

A part of me feels sorry for the goalies in these games because of the lack of defense and some of the amazing offensive talent. But, it was so obvious that they were all having a blast, which makes it even more fun to watch.

I was sort of hoping that Anton would use this to help with his confidence, similar to Brusty kicking ass in the shootouts at last years ASG after struggling in them so badly. Anton was fantastic, and I was really excited for him.

And, PK Subban is just adorable!!

Ms. Conduct  January 20, 2010 at 9:41 AM  

I had that thought as well... this has to be a confidence boost for him. Hopefully KC will play him in the next game and keep the momentum of that going.

artandhockey  January 20, 2010 at 10:10 AM  

missed it all, noi recep here, but watched Rangers vs Lightning in prep for our Saturday game in Tampa, and of course the Everblades one on Friday.. BB in goal? What say you? So will have to miss replay as well..
but KHUDOS for Anton LOL..Tres bien for Noreau

Ms. Conduct  January 20, 2010 at 10:22 AM  

I'd be surprised if Barry wasn't in goal for your game as he's hot right now (well, always, but specifically in net) and clearly their best goalie. But who knows...

artandhockey  January 20, 2010 at 4:30 PM  

wilol go to morningskate and see.. also Bucky is back (I hear)..will the two melt all that ice ;-)

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