PLAYOFF PREVIEW PARTY – MIDWEST ON MIDWEST CRIME
Last year, the Los Angeles Kings lost their final regular season game and it forced them to play the best team in hockey during the first round of the playoffs. This year, the Los Angeles Kings won their final regular season game and it has forced them to play the team they've beat 8 straight times, including a 4 game sweep during the second round of last year's playoffs. When a team has beat an opponent 8 straight times… it's hard to muster up some true hatred toward the opposition. Thankfully, Andrew Cieslak from the Chicago Blackhawks blog Hockeenight came to me and asked if he could write a guest post to show why even though the LA Kings have totally dominated the St. Louis Blues over the past season and a half… we LA Kings fans should still hate them. Take it away, Andrew!
*THE FOLLOWING BELOW IS NOT WRITTEN BY THE ROYAL HALF, BUT RATHER A GUEST WRITER*
So you’re going to play St. Louis in a playoff series. Lucky you! The most important thing to remember is that St. Louis is a blight on the map of the United States and that their “hockey” team is to be treated with nothing but outright contempt. We in Chicago know that bandwagons can fill up quickly (that's a good thing!) so I come to you from HOCKEENIGHT.COM with a crash course on how to properly revile the St. Louis Blues.
Last year, some of you might recall, the the Kings and Blues met in the 2nd round of the playoffs. You might also recall that the Kings swept the Blues in four straight games. I never got the chance to officially thank the people of Los Angeles for this so here it is: thank you!
You may also remember that for this season this Blues team was picked to win the Central division and the Western Conference by a host of pro hockey experts. Whoops! Turns out the Chicago Blackhawks are kind of good. It also turns out that the St. Louis Blues are an undisciplined team with terrible goaltending coached by seven-chinned Arby’s enthusiast Ken Hitchcock. The Blues are tied with the Toronto Maple Leafs as the team with the longest Stanley Cup drought. The Leafs however, actually have won it before. The Blues never have. The closest they ever came was *admires image of Bobby Orr flying horizontally through the air* sorry, I lost my train of thought.
The Blues’ shitbaggery starts from the top: Captain and Manly Man David Backes leads this team on and off the ice. Off the ice he loves dogs so much he ‘rescues’ as many as he can from animal shelters and makes coats out of them. That last part is one of his many dirty secrets. On the ice he will light up the hit tracker by chasing around his far superior opponents who will have the puck which is important for scoring. But he's tough! You may hear he's similar to Dustin Brown. That's true! Except Dustin Brown scores goals (Backes has six this season) and has a Cup ring. David Backes has a coat made of dogs and probably syphilis.
Photoshops via @monocleman1
The Blues shored up their defense at the trade deadline when they realized that human rat king Barrett Jackman was playing second pair minutes. So naturally they picked up guys from defensive juggernauts Buffalo (Jordan Leopold) and Calgary (Jabe O’Meester). Ok? Fear not: you'll still notice Jackman as the guy punching your favorite skill players in the back of the head well behind the play. He's the guy wearing number 5 and also the guy who has the green stink lines trailing behind him as he lumbers around the ice like a Cardinals relief pitcher after a night at Mike Shannon’s.
You may have been told that St. Louis has a wealth of talented forwards other than Captain Dog Slayer and that's sort of true. There's…well there's the exciting Vladimir Tarasenko who scored eight goals this year. Wow that's not that good. Their leading scorer is Chris Stewart who likes to fight so just send Jordan Nolan after him and that problem is all but solved.
What about their goalies? Ah yes Brian Elliott reeled off a tidy little hot streak to solidify himself as the Blues number one goalie ahead of permahurt Jaroslav Halak and AHL quality nobody Jake Allen (JAY GALLON). Elliott's hot streak propelled his save percentage to a Jackman I.Q. point over .900. In other words: he sucks.
Nobody wanted to play the Blues in the first round for one simple reason: they are going to injure your favorite players. I think most people have the Blackhawks or Kings coming out of the West but the Hawks have the distinct advantage of not playing the Blues, and boy are they excited to knock knees and crack skulls with reckless abandon. Just do a simple twitter search during any Blues game and alongside various tweets like “Watching the #Blues game at Applebee’s/Chili’s/Terrible Chain Restaurant” will be tweets like “#Blues need to #hit somebody in the mouth” with a bunch of casual racism/sexism thrown in for good measure.
As you cringe your way through another four game sweep watching David Backes chase Dustin Brown, Jeff Carter, Mike Richards, and Anze Kopitar all over the place racking up hits while the Dry Islanders & Co. rack up goals just remember: Ryan Reaves lives in a dumpster behind the Purina building.
Go Kings Go.