Sunday, November 27, 2011

Oh hey there...

Played against Scott TFCG Monday night and he said he still reads the blog. If you're in his boat, sorry I've been so absentee. (Again.)

Things look to settle down pretty soon, so hopefully I'll be back here more.

Monday's game was kinda messed up though. My ankle has been hurting when I play, so that's been bugging me pretty much since I got back from vacation. It's making some of my movements a little tentative, but bothers me less each week. Fortunately it's been a VERY light month for ice time.

Then I got beamed in the head twice. Once with a point blank wrister. It startled me and kinda pissed me off that he put it on my melon from so close in (I forget these guys don't necessarily have control of their shots). So I shrieked "BITCH!" and then we all started laughing.

It's horrible the stuff that just flies out of my mouth sometimes when I'm playing. Jesus. No filter.

Then I took a snap shot from the circle in the head. That one I felt, in that sort of vague way that a really good helmet still lets you feel a shot to the noggin. Just a dull pressure in the forehead and my jaw hurt, probably from the way the mask distributes the force throughout the whole mask.

It was weird.

Anyway, didn't play great, but salvaged my fragile ego with a couple of sexy glove saves right as they opened the zam door. I made the first one and was thinking, "Dammit, open the zam door so I can finish on a high note!" and then here they came again, with numbers, and I snag it again. Boom. THEN they open the zam door. Sometimes the goalie gods throw me a bone.

Goaltending just hasn't been a high priority lately and I'm probably not preparing or playing with the gusto that I probably should. The writing side of my hockey life is taking a lot of energy. As is work and selling our house and so forth.

I'm also reading this really great hockey porn novella that has me a little distracted. I'm sure you understand, right?

Speaking of hockey porn, I did a little thanksgiving for goalie thighs and other delicious things over at Backhand Shelf today. Check it out.

In other news: I'm developing a soft spot for Tyler Cuma. He's lovely on Twitter. Amazing how 140 characters here and there can really make me like or dislike someone.

Also, had a shutout week before last at women's league. Saw 4 shots, per the score keeper, but I think that was high. Happy for finally getting a win but weird to get one where I feel like we totally could have won if I hadn't even been there.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Check yourself, Ryan Miller

So I've watched Lucic's hit on Miller a few times now and, while I may be angering the goalie gods to say it, I think Miller has as much responsibility here as Lucic. Maybe more. 

Looch has said he was barreling in, looked down at the puck, then looked up and Miller was just RIGHT THERE all of a sudden. His instinct was to put an arm up and protect himself. Watching the video, I sorta believe that.

But for Miller, he saw the whole thing unfold. He saw Lucic on a breakaway, saw him with his head down controlling the puck, saw they were going to collide, and did nothing about it.

Now, I know if I'm aggressively challenging a player who may not see me coming, my instinct is to get low and try to poke check the puck away from them. This generally just sends the other player flying while you, the goalie, are just a ball of well-protected hate there on the ice. Unless they kick you in the head or cut you with a skate blade, you're pretty safe.

But at the very least, you have to brace yourself for impact and Miller had plenty of time to do that, unlike Lucic who had the puck to worry about.

Instead, Miller just stood there like he was in some kind of protective bubble, and then got thrown like a rag doll when the freight train hit. Like Lucic, of all people, was going to say, "Oh, I'm sorry sir, I'm not the type to knock guys ass over tea kettle, so I'll just go around you."

Even if Looch had time to change course, that's not his game. But I don't think he did, so it's a mostly moot point. (And just to be clear, I'm not pro-Lucic here. I don't 100% believe he couldn't have let up and avoided or minimized the collision, but I think as Miller was the one who unequivocally saw this hit coming, he had a responsibility to react intelligently.)

Now, here's the part where I disclaim some bias: I've been pretty irritated with Crunchy lately and feel like he's been acting like a bit of a baby. He seems sorta sour and crankier than usual. Maybe marriage doesn't suit him.

The bottom line is that I think some of the onus is on the goalies to protect themselves. The scenario as I saw it seemed pretty logical and predictable, other than the part where Miller just stood there like a sacred cow and got slaughtered.

Anyway, I hope the goalie gods don't smite me tonight in my women's league game. Also, apologies for not writing here in a long while. My weekly posts at TheScore and SBNation pretty much drain all the writing I have time for right out of me.

If you haven't been keeping up with my Backhand Shelf stuff, here's an archive of all of them so far: Thanks for reading!


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