PACIFIC WAR ROOM – 10.10.14

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In an effort to keep Los Angeles Kings fans aware of the comings and goings of the other teams in the Smythe Pacific Division… we here at The Royal Half have created the Pacific War Room… a wrap-up of the past week in the Pacific from some of the best and brightest bloggers who cover Pacific Division teams. In alphabetical order of the teams in the Pacific Division… we present the second installment of Pacific War Room for the 2014-15 NHL Season!

 

ANAHEIM DUCKS
@EarlSleek

 Well, only one game to report on this week for the Ducks. They were in Pittsburgh yesterday for the league’s Aquatic Bird Rivalry Night, where two new NHL seasons were hatched!

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The Ducks went with Pittsburgh-born John Gibson in net, but he might not have been able to focus very well with so many family and friends in attendance. He allowed more goals yesterday than he did over his 3 games started last regular season. Penguins swarmed the Ducks 6-4, even with Corey Perry netting a hat trick and Ryan Kesler scoring three points in his Anaheim debut.

But hey, I guess it’s better than last year’s season opener, where the Ducks lost 6-1 and Patrick Roy lost his mind.

Other than that, the only noteworthy news from Anaheim this past week was that Sochi phenom Hilary Knight practiced with the Ducks. Yeah, that Hilary Knight! I’m not going to say that it was a distraction, but Bryan Allen and Dany Heatley immediately picked up day-to-day lower body injuries.

Oh well. Ducks continue their east coast swing next week. Yay meaningful hockey!

 

ARIZONA COYOTES
@BrendanPorter from Five For Howling

Wha? Huh? Sorry, just nodded off there. Is the Kings banner raising ceremony over yet?

Anyways, the Coyotes.

The team has low expectations. Fans are discontent with the team’s on-ice moves. Ownership is (yet again) in flux, with relatively little information. But there is one thing that I will always turn to in times of strife.

At least we’re not Winnipeg.

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Pictured: The Biggest Tourist Attraction in Winnipeg.

I think that’s destined to be the mantra of this season for the Arizona Coyotes. So it’s only fitting that the Coyotes get pulverized by Winnipeg’s finest by a final of 6-2 in their first game of the season.

Mike Smith was awful. The defense was awful. The scoring was…wait for it… okay because they got goals from players who need to contribute this season if the team is going to have success. What? Were you expecting me to say something else?

Even still, it’s not like the Winnipeg Jets had to rub it in or anything by running up the score, though I don’t think Mark Scheifele and Evander Kane fully understood what the phrase “take a knee” actually means…

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You’re doing it wrong.

Although I’m sure that Coyotes fans, always pantheons of grace and class, are taking the decisive loss in stride:

You’re also doing it wrong.

So the Coyotes open the season looking like they’re still in the preseason. But that’s okay, because I’m sure they’ll take out their anger on whatever lowly suckers the NHL scheduled them to play next…

*Sees Los Angeles on the schedule for Saturday night*

So, 0-2-0?

 

CALGARY FLAMES
@BookOfLoob from Flames Nation

It was a big week for the Flames. They were the hot topic all week. Everyone had some burning questions they needed answered, and the Flames delivered, although they were not particularly incendiary about it. But when there’s that much heat, someone wants to douse your fire, and tragically that’s what happened.

Ah, Scorch. Only the greatest thing to be loosely affiliated with the Calgary Flames, and by extension, hockey, ever. There actually was a lot to talk about in Flamesville this week, but man, Scorch melted our hearts instead. Scorch, as I’m sure you’re aware by now, is the AHL Adirondack Flames new mascot, unveiled this past week in the most uninspired and unintentionally brilliant PR ploy we’ve ever seen. He even has an origin story that’s got X-Men written all over it. Peep this, Marvel:

He is the lone surviving flame from the fire that destroyed much of Glens Falls in 1864. Scorch was supposedly a smoldering ember in Bride and Gown, which was originally Calvin Robbin’s blacksmith shop (one of the few buildings in the Glens Falls business district to survive the fire). Scorch the Flame then overpowered a firefighter, showing his strength.

Never has one town been so proud of an act of arson that nearly obliterated their entire existence. When will we finally let poor Calvin Robbin forget about crippling lack of business acumen that caused him to lose his business to Bride and Gown? Anyway, you read that right: Overpowered a firefighter. Afterall, overpowering firefighters was what made 9/11 so popular, so you could see why the Baby Flames would want to jump in on this. Reaction to the “smoldering ember” was, as you’d imagine, white hot:

The team, like a bunch of cowards, issued an apology, but it’s too late. Scorch has been burning bright since the 1800s, lives on in our hearts and our collective nightmares, and he’s never going away. Especially because he’s effective!

Sure, maybe the Flames beat the Oilers because they’re the Oilers and it’s hilarious, but maybe the Flames were #Ignited by Scorch, leading them to victory. It’s probably still the Oilers thing, but let’s not spoil a perfect narrative.

Other things that happened this week: Sven got cut (boo!), Krys Barch likes the Flames and punching, Tim Peel is a moron, and the Flames played a game without Brian McGrattan in the lineup, which blew my mind, and I hope is a lasting thing.

No one murdered Gaudreau. Ern can go on waivers. Bollig too. Bollig played the least amount of time against Edmonton and was MILES below everyone on possession anyway. Facepunchers are a dying breed. Viva La Sven As for what’s ahead, well it’s better days for the Adirondack Flames:

And for Scorch, well, he’d better watch it around all those firefighters, or else he’s going to be replaced by the next big thing in AHL mascots, which I like to call Toast McGrattan.

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EDMONTON OILERS
@JSBMjeanshorts

I only watched about 1/4 of the game last night, and I’m literally in the middle of finishing up packing before the movers show up to finally free me from this horrible hellscape but from what I did see last night the Oilers somehow looked pretty okay and also terrible at the same time. My friend Curt summed it up pretty succulently “Those fucking Oilers show so much signs of being a great hockey team and then 2 defensive zone breakdowns later and they’re out of a hockey game”.

Needless to say a loss to Calgary at home on opening night REALLY set the tone for the season that the fans wanted…

Our friend Lowetide has a great write up about last night so just go read that instead.

LOS ANGELES KINGS
@PumperNicholl from The Royal Half

It was another ho-hum Stanley Cup banner raising ceremony kind of week for the LA Kings.

Now, save for Earl, I know that my fellow Pacific War Room blogging buddies are confused by what a Stanley Cup banner raising is. (That is unless JSBM and Loob are in their late 50s. And based on their tweets, I can’t rule that out completely.)

The ceremony took place because the Kings won a bunch of playoff games and I guess beat Anaheim and San Jose along the way.

So it was only fitting that the Kings opened their season against the #ItWas3to0 Sharks. And since the Sharks didn’t get a chance to see the pregame festivities, I figured I’d share them with all of you!

Best captain in hockey in the best hockey city in the world.

Now, about that banner…

*faints*

The game was cancelled immediately following the ceremony because the Kings left the arena and forfeited the game to give the Sharks their first win of the season.

 

SAN JOSE SHARKS
@Stace_ofBase from Battle of California

Happy Opening Week, Everyone!

Going into this season, there were a lot of questions raised about how the Sharks would do after their collapse and the series of oddities that followed in the offseason. A lot of people believed that this was the end for these misfits in teal… but alas, these fools were wrong.

Before the game, the Sharks announced that they will not have a captain, but four alternates! Those alternate captains are Vlasic, Pavelski, Mar–wait a second..MARLEAU? And THORNTON? NOT COUTURE? hahahaha. What a big bunch of drama for nothing. Fuck this team.

Anyway, there were a few pregame quotes leaked about how the Kings felt about raising their second banner in three years. I’m not going to share them all because the Battle of California legal team told me it wasn’t a good idea, but here’s one of them:

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Kind of off-topic but what do I know? I’ve never Played The Game.

After the Kings raised their sixth (that’s cute) banner on Wednesday, there was hockey to be played and apparently nobody let the reigning Stanley Cup champions know this. The Sharks came out swinging, and by swinging I mean, actually playing hockey, because John Scott didn’t even play (seriously, fuck this team). Everyone freaked out because Niemi was in net, but he got a shutout because of course he did. The final result was 4-0 because of course it was. The Sharks continue to be the reigning champions of October because of course they are. Fuck this team.

Like my friends in A.A., I’m just gonna take it one day (or game) at a time, not live in the past, etc., and since I am living in the now, I’m gonna say….

SUCK IT JERKFACES WE WON !!!!

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yeeeeeeee

RAISE IT UP

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VANCOUVER CANUCKS
@PetBugs13 from Canucks Army

Undefeated baby! Woooooooo.

This better be at the very top this week. Don’t give my any of that alphabetical crap, either.

But either way, it does seem kind of crowded way up here. In fact, it feels a little bit like this:

But hey, after a few too many pointless “moral victories” last year, I’ll take a real victory any day. Even if it was against the Flames. Speaking of which, any chance the Canucks can play those guys 81 more times this year?

Yes, that’s a dumb question, but stupid extrapolations are what the first game of the season is all about. Heck, on the early news last night, the anchor turned to the sports guy and asked, “Ok, based on one game, do you think the Canucks will win the Stanley Cup?”

But then, what should I expect from a profession that makes a living scaring the hell out of us with exaggerated threats about Ebola and ISIS?

Speaking of which, you know what else is an exaggerated threat? The Flames’ fourth line.

For the most part, the Canucks readily handled the big, scary Flames on opening night despite not dressing Tom Sestito. Go figure, eh, Torts? Anyway, for all the ink spilled this week about how important the tough guy role is to winning hockey games after the Leafs cut Colton Orr and Fraser McLaren, it’s clear that most NHL teams are finally realizing that it might actually be more important if they ice guys that can play more than 5 minutes a game. Or I suppose you can be Bob Hartley, who thinks he can have the best of both worlds by giving Deryk Engelland…let’s see here…16…ONE SIX minutes of ice time! I literally almost fell off my chair when I just looked that up. Wow. Keep on, keeping on, Bob.

But don’t tell Krys Barch any of this. He went on a bit of a twitter rant this week bemoaning the lack of jobs for enforcers, including this beauty:

Well, I suppose that if Krys doesn’t land a job in the NHL soon, maybe he’ll wind up on the evening news. No, not as a sports pundit, but as a fill-in for the scary story to lead off the broadcast:

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Finally, I want to finish off with an aside. Now, I’m sure @PumperNicholl, or whatever other minion @TheRoyalHalf has doing the Kings section this week, will cover this, but then you probably won’t read all the way down far enough to get to it, so I thought I’d say a word or two about Adrian Dater’s epic twitter meltdown last weekend.

Dater has had a real hate-on for the Kings’ Brayden McNabb, and appropriately enough, given that the game was in Vegas, he went all in on the hate during the Kings/Avs pre-season game on Saturday night, calling the Kings’ rookie a “pussy.” This, as you might imagine, started off quite the exchange of ideas on Twitter…yada yada yada…

Suffice it to say, the Denver Post was not impressed and Dater has been suspended for two weeks as a result.

Looks like he learned the hard way, that the only thing that stays in Vegas is your money:

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By the way, if you want to laugh at the Canucks all season but don’t want to have to read all the way to the bottom of the Pacific War Room every week, get yourself an authentic Graphic Comments 2014-15 calendar. And while you’re at it, buy the Leafs one too! It’s even more fun to laugh at them.

TRH PACIFIC DIVISION STANDINGS WATCH™

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Well, at least it’s better than last week. (Not really.)

Thanks to all the amazing Pacific Division Bloggers. Check back next Friday for another edition of Pacific War Room!

Also, be sure to check out the DemocraThree, the Central Division’s answer to the Pacific War Room.

You can check out past editions of Pacific War Room here!

PumperNicholl is a lifelong LA Kings fan and actually learned how to speak English from Bob Miller by watching LA Kings games… and the Police Academy movies.You should probably follow PumperNicholl on Twitter @pumpernicholl
  • Remington No.7

    HEY HEY MY SHITTY TWEET MADE IT ON A BIG TIME HACKEY BLOG!