PACIFIC WAR ROOM – 2.1.16

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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 order of the Pacific Division standings… we present the Pacific War Room for the week of February 1st, 2016!!

 

LOS ANGELES KINGS
1st PLACE, 30-16-3, 63 POINTS
@TheRoyalHalf from The Royal Half

The LA Kings head into the All-Star Break with another victory as they were successfully able to hold onto their 3rd Period lead against the Colorado AvalaWHAAA

Who cares about a mid-week game against the Avalanche that was on national television (sigh). No, it’s time for the All-Star Game!

In serious news, on Tuesday,  we learned that our LA Kings Grandpa, Bob Miller, would be having heart bypass surgery this week. We love Bob and even some of us here at #TeamTRH learned to speak English from listening to Bob Miller call LA Kings games. His presence will be greatly missed but we wish him a speedy recovery as the LA Kings will try to #WinItForBob!

And finally, the All-Star Game will be played in Los Angeles next season, and fans everywhere are excited!

See you in 2017!

 

SAN JOSE SHARKS
2nd PLACE, 26-18-4, 56 POINTS
@sharkdressedmen

So the Sharks had one game earlier this week before the All Star break. They beat Colorado 6-1. The team looks good.

Whatever.
More important are 3 things:

1. The evolution of Brent Burns shootout.

2. Lil Pavs and Lil Burns shootout.

3. The People’s Champion Reigns.

We are all John Scott.

The Sharks play the Ducks, Blues, and Preds next week on the road.


 

ARIZONA COYOTES
3rd PLACE, 24-20-5, 53 POINTS

Honestly, the Coyotes don’t find an owner
and this could easily be their logo moving forward.

 

ANAHEIM DUCKS
4th PLACE, 22-18-7, 51 POINTS
@EarlSleek

Even before the Ducks played a game this week, there was big news when it was announced Shawn Horcoff was suspended 20 games for violating the terms of NHL/NHLPA performance enhancing substances program. While it appears this was an honest mistake – Horcoff took some treatment in recovering from an injury – I suppose there were some telltale signs that should have been noticed:

IncredibleHorc

In one sense, this isn’t that big an issue for the Ducks. In Nate Thompson, they more or less have another Shawn Horcoff they can substitute in, plus it means more time for Mike Santorelli, who’s also pretty serviceable. But still, one fewer useful player for a fairly critical stretch of games.

The first of these games was in Boston, and despite Anaheim allowing a goal on the game’s opening shift, the Ducks stormed back for a 6-2 win. Simon Despres rejoined the team after a half-season absence, and Anaheim’s continued separation of Getzlaf and Perry led to extra offense, as the Ducks scored six for the first time all year.

Afterwards, Corey Perry and John Gibson went to Nashville to join Team John Scott. I’ll admit I was skeptical about most parts of this weekend – the spirit in which John Scott was elected, the 3-on-3 shenanigan setup, the need for All Star Games at all – but I was dead wrong on pretty much all of that. What an event; well done, Nashville!

Though neither Duck did particularly well in the skills competition,…

…they more than made up for it in the 3-on-3 tournament itself. Gibson picked up both wins, including the split-shutout with Quick in the final game, and Perry potted the only goal in the deciding game, fully completing the Cinderella John Scott All Star Game saga. All in all, a pretty magical weekend.

 

VANCOUVER CANUCKS
5th PLACE, 20-19-11, 51 POINTS
@JDylanBurke from Canucks Army

This was a pretty quiet week in Vancouver – especially by Canucks standards. There was just the one game, a 2-1 loss at home to the Nashville Predators for an All-Star break which will last into this Thursday. The game was by all accounts a snooze-fest to boot, so the Canucks basically took a week and a half off.

Daniel Sedin was representing the Canucks at the All-Star Game. Contrary to the claims of one Denis Potvin, the Sedins are not low-lifes and there is absolutely nothing wrong with licking peanut butter with your fingers or something. Anyways, Daniel donated a bunch of cash again which is neat, but nothing new for the Sedins… They do that a lot!

I think I read somewhere that Daniel had the most points or goals or something in the 3-on-3 tournament, which is neat. Assuming it’s true anyways – don’t really care enough to check.

Yeah, I mean… other than that, there wasn’t a lot happening hockey-wise in this town. The Canucks were linked to Andrew Ladd, which is only a little crazy. Then I kicked around the idea of perhaps acquiring Brandon Pirri, which would be neat I guess.

Almost forgot to mention how salty this made me.

Oh, there’s a competition at Canucks Army for free Violent Gentlemen swag. Get in on that!
 

CALGARY FLAMES
6th PLACE, 21-24-3, 45 POINTS
@MikeFAIL from Flames Nation

Greetings sports fans, it me, John Scott super fan #1.

The Flames lost twice before going on break. I don’t really care though, I was more excited about the end of the week more than anything. Somehow they managed to only surrender two goals against the Stars which is impressive given Dallas wins most games 9-7 or something.

The Flames are literally nowhere different than they were a year ago. They were a turd floating around other turds last season. This season, the Pacific looks like a toilet in Flint Michigan. If the team decides to sell at the deadline (which is the smart thing to do), they’ll be in for a tank race with the rest of Canada. I’m sure at some point between Vancouver to Toronto we’ll see a hockey recreation of the Battle of Kursk. History nerds put down your spreadsheets and Corsi and go read a history book.

What will improbably but probably happen is this:

  • Flames go on amazing push down the stretch
  • They trade maybe one or two players a-la-Curtis Glencross of last season (LOOKIN’ AT YOU, KRIS RUSSELL)
  • Make the playoffs (barely) and crush some lowly group of idiots in the first round before losing in the second round again

But then, if matters couldn’t improve (it got worse), Dennis Wideman decided to Matt Cooke/Zac Remaldo a referee after a hit from Shea Weber. Oh, and they lost but no big deal.

So let’s talk about that friends because it sets the Flames up for a couple things. The main thing of course is hoping Don Henderson is okay. But hey, he didn’t see the ref until the last moment. Seriously, that’s the worst excuse ever. I had a better excuse when my parents found me without pants, passed out, and covered in my own urine once. Concussions aren’t fun, I myself have had six that I can count of. That said I initially defended ol’ Dennis Wideman because I figured:

Hey, he’s a reasonable adult, he might have been feeling the ill effects of a potential concussion (it’s likely one, Mike, stop being an idiot)!

But then I remembered the most basic tenant of assessing hockey players: They’ll probably do something dumb. Wideman did that and now we’re sitting back and waiting for the repercussions. It’ll either be 10 games, 20 games, or something far worse. It puts the team in an awful situation too, because now you’re going to have a little bit harder time of moving the guy who can barely skate or do anything correctly. He can barely skate as is, his defensive impact is like giving the opposing team an extra forward, and I wish I could ship him up north to live on a farm.

Oh well, I mean the week could get better right? RIGHT? Well first we had to deal with Tyler Seguin giving some awful dating tips/advice/things you should never think or do. Basically if we all followed Seguin’s way of life we’d all have syphilis. From there it was the ASG break, which gave us the joy we all wanted in life: John Scott. Everyone wrote their own poetic about John Scott, myself included via relentless tweeting, but Stace nails it very perfectly here.

In the end Gaudreau played well with Hall which begs the question: Just how can Brad Treliving fleece Peter Chiarelli out of Taylor. I mean Taylor barely knows boat safety or how to distinguish a mannequin from a human so his value is not that high. Mark Giordano was silent for much of the night because this wasn’t his stage, which is okay. He’ll just try and have a strong season and get more legitimate Norris attention than Drew Doughty.

And finally, in closing:

 

EDMONTON OILERS
7th PLACE, 19-26-5, 43 POINTS
@JSBMjeanshorts from Oilers Nation

The Oilers literally haven’t played a single game since the 23rd of January, so thankfully I don’t have to talk about them this week!

The Oilers DID, however, send a player to the All Star game, even though I thought they were banned from doing that until they find a way to not be in last place in the west at this same time every single year. But Taylor Hall went to Nashville and had himself a pretty great weekend! He was the only player for the western conference to win a heat in the fastest skater contest during the skills competition. And in the All Star game itself our boy notched a couple goals, despite the fact that he was saddled with two Calgary Flames as linemates! Turns out he actually IS a good player! Who knew?

And as for the All Star game, I mean, come on. I think we’re all on the same page here, yes? That was the most fun All Star game I can remember, and the only bad thing is that future versions are now going to seem THAT MUCH WORSE due to the lack of John Scott. I’m also slightly worried that this is going to start a stupid trend of picking the worst guy in the league every year to appear, so pre-congratulations to Zac Rinaldo on being selected to the 2017 NHL All Star game!

And credit to the NHL, that 3 on 3 format was pretty damn fun. Obviously putting $1 million on the line helped up the intensity, but it was cool to see players actually, like, almost HALF TRYING (Corey Perry aside). There were big saves, tons of breakaways, some bodychecks(!!!), and all in all it was a nice change of pace from the usual 17-14 games we’re used to ignoring and then complaining about until the next one comes around and is somehow even worse than the last. This being the NHL I guarantee they’ll find a way to ruin it somehow next year, because god forbid they ever do anything in favour of the fans. So let’s hold onto these memories forever, because this will probably be the only time in history we all enjoyed the All Star game. What a time to be alive!
 

TRH WILD CARD WATCH™

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Thanks to all the amazing Pacific Division Bloggers. Check back next week for another edition of Pacific War Room! You can check out past editions of Pacific War Room here!

The Royal Half has been a Los Angeles Kings fan since 1988 and a Half-Season Ticket Holder since 2002. He has seen the following goaltenders play in person for the Los Angeles Kings… Kelly Hrudey, Grant Fuhr, Byron Dafoe, Jamie Storr, Stephane Fiset, Felix Potvin, Cristobal Huet, Roman Cechmanek, Mathieu Garon, Adam Hauser, Jason LaBarbera, Barry Brust, Sean Burke, Dan Cloutier, Yutaka Fukufuji, Jean-Sebastien Aubin, Erik Ersberg, Jonathan Bernier, Jonathan Quick, Ben Scrivens and Martin Jones.You can follow The Royal Half on Twitter @TheRoyalHalf.