Tag Archives: Bruins

TTMI~Radio, e.92, Sam Fels and Chris Block preview the 2011-12 Chicago Blackhawks

By Chris Block

With Opening Night of the 2011-12 NHL season now a mere days away, we called upon an old friend and colleague on tonight’s edition of TheThirdManIn~Radio to get down to some serious Blackhawk puck chatter.

Sam Fels, writer extraordinaire and editor of The Committed IndianSecondCityHockey.com and blogger at NBCChicago.com’s MadHouse Enforcer joins me to digest the off season and preview this year’s Chicago Blackhawks.

On the show, we discuss, but won’t limit ourselves to….

— Blackhawks’ Opening Night roster
— Updates and status of injured Hawks – Ben Smith, Patrick Sharp & Davey Bolland
— Brandon Saad signs entry-level. Begins season in NHL
— Saad vs Morin
— The mess at the center position
— Kane at Center, Sharp at Wing – For how long though?
— Grading Stan Bowman’s off season. Likes & Dislikes
— Can Dan Carcillo play?
— John Scott in the lineup Opening night?
— Ray Emery ‘wins’ the backup job
— The shake ups and makeup of the new defense corps
— Chris Campoli’s contract stand & new place in Montreal
— Biggest Hawks’ Storylines, Key Players for 2011-12
— Bolland again
— How much longer will Joel Quenneville remain Hawks’ head coach?
— Stan Bowman’s new 3-year contract extension in 2016
— 1st NHL head coach to be fired
— Western conference & Finals picks
— Predictions on Hart, Norris & Selke winners
— the Dallas Stars Ice Girls~!
— Drink beer – Get loaded – this Friday night at The Bottom Lounge with Sam and the boys over at SecondCityHockey.com at their big Opening Night viewing party.

And much… much… more

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Enjoy.  And thanks to everyone as always for listening.

Check out the archives – BlogTalkRadio.com/TheThirdManIn
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ChrisBlock@TheThirdManIn.com

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Monday night’s Hockeenight PuckCast

Gracious hosts as always, CT and the “Forklift” of Hockeenight.com welcomed me onto their PuckCast again last night.

Click the player below to listen here in your browser.  ITunes users can subscribe and download all of their shows in the podcast section of the ITunes store.

For others who prefer to download these audio programs, I uploaded it here.

We ran the gamut of Chicago Blackhawks topics on the show.  Here’s a list of just some of those:

-Blackhawks at this weekend’s NHL Entry Draft
-Who the Hawks are likely to pick
-Draft trades
-Which position the Hawks need to stock up on
-Making the right deal with Michael Frolik
-Bringing back former Hawks
-Two Hawks, aside from Marty Turco, definitely goners
-Niklas Hjalmarsson
-What Ben Smith won’t do next season
-The Kid Rock of hockey blogging
-Canucks injuries
-Twitter
-Joel Quenneville’s goalie gun
-Jeremy Morin
-Getting the best player in a deal
-Gargantuan hockey bloggers
-Blackhawks convention
-More on Duncan Keith’s comments
-Trying to make sense of why people dislike John McDonough so much
-Missing Tonkfest
-Thoughts on Canucks-Bruins
-Phil Collins in Concert
-Hockey Returns to Winnipeg
-Trying to watch baseball
-Raffi Torres, Aaron Rome, Hjalmarsson and hits that must be taken out of the game

And much, much more

Thanks as always to Fork and CT for having me on and to all those who take the time to listen to their show, as well as ours.

ChrisBlock@TheThirdManIn.com

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Bold, perhaps foolhardy 2011 NHL Playoff picks

There were some very long, tough deliberations going into a few of this year’s opening round matchups.  Its difficult to isolate a ‘Cinderella’ this year because every one of those teams have gaping holes; major issues.

If the Nashville Predators were facing almost any other team but the Ducks in the first round, I’d pick the Preds to finally solve the first-round victory equation.  The Preds must jump all over Anaheim at Honda Center in games one and two to have a chance.  Pekka Rinne is due for a coming out series and the Ducks will have to get by with Dan Ellis at least for the initial game or two.  It will be a long series though and the Ducks have too much firepower to bet against.  I’m already planning on regretting this, but…. Ducks in 7.

(1) Vancouver over (8) Chicago – 6 games

(2) San Jose over (7) Los Angeles – 5 games

(3) Detroit over (6) Phoenix – 7 games

(4) Anaheim over (5) Nashville – 7 games

The Canucks are deeper up front and their blue line will outperform the Blackhawks defensive six.  Corey Crawford had to start the Blackhawks’ final 27 consecutive games out of necessity and showed signs of wear in the last week.  If the Hawks do get under Roberto Luongo’s hair, the key to the series then becomes Alain Vigneault’s trigger finger.  In Corey Schneider, Vigneault has possibly an equally as good goaltender to Luongo in the back up position.  But if Vigneault waits too long to flip the card, the series’ tide could turn and it could be too late.  The Hawks are 18-10-1-3 versus Western playoff teams and five of those losses overall came to Vancouver and San Jose.  If they can somehow work their Van-magic again and pull past the Nucks, the Hawks could go on another run.  But the Canucks are too deep; special teams are too good and they’re primed to take this series.  In both previous Blackhawks’ postseasons, home ice in the first round was a pivotal factor and they don’t have it here.  Canucks in 6.

Phoenix gave the Red Wings all they could handle last season and now have another chance to pull off the upset.  The difference this year being Detroit has the home ice advantage.  Detroit struggled down the stretch and will start the series without Henrik Zetterberg (knee).  Jimmy Howard has been just ‘okay’ and he stares down the other end of the rink at Ilya Bryzgalov, who is capable of winning three or four games on his own.  Phoenix relies on him and a balanced scoring attack.  The Red Wings need Johan Franzen to get going again and guys like Lidstrom, Stuart, Rafalski and Kronwall must be better than they were in March and April.  Home ice will be a major factor.  Dave Tippett and Mike Babcock are two of the best coaches around.  Experience edge goes to eventual series winner… Red Wings in 7.

San Jose were the league’s best team during the second-half of the season.  Antti Niemi regained his 2010 playoff form and finds himself now behind another deep and top-end talent rich 2-seed.  Los Angeles will be without top center Anze Kopitar.  While Kopitar didn’t do much in the Kings’ opening-round loss to Vancouver last year, his absence is a stinger.  The season-series between these two teams did split 3-3, but the Sharks needed a shootout to win two of those games.  Jonathan Quick and Antti Niemi will wage an epic battle, so the games will be tight.  Which is where Kopitar’s loss looms bigger at a position the team isn’t strong at.  San Jose has two lines that can score every night and a third that will pitch in too.  The Kings secondary scoring line is now its first and thus draws the top checking assignment.  If LA is to win this series, they’ll have to do so with a string of 2-1, 1-0 type victories.  They can pull it off once or twice, but the Sharks are too explosive to shut down four over seven…. Sharks in 5.

(1) Washington Capitals over (8) New York Rangers – 7 games

(2) Philadelphia Flyers over (7) Buffalo Sabres – 6 games

(3) Boston Bruins over (6) Montreal Canadiens – 5 games

(5) Tampa Bay Lightning over (4) Pittsburgh Penguins – 6 games

ChrisBlock@TheThirdManIn.com

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TTMI~Radio e.69: Pucking Around the NHL with Breakout! Hockey

This week we’re joined by Adam Summers of the Breakout! Hockey Program, which you can find at BreakoutHockey.podomatic.com.

With Adam we touch on a ton of league-wide topics including the weekend’s All-Star festivities, highlights, the burden of being Phil Kessel and the man who wakes up every day knowing he traded for him.

We take advantage of Adam’s Montreal Canadiens expertise to delve into that team’s first half.  The P.K. Subban controversies, the decision to keep Carey Price and trade Jaroslav Halak – how that looks so far and if we can expect the preliminary results to continue.

With 28 days to go until the NHL trade deadline and 69 days left in the NHL 2010-11 regular season, we look at early favorites, and possible darkhorses, to come out of the Eastern and Western conferences.  Other topics include HBO’s 24/7 vs TSN’s Oil Change documentary series, the plight of one Ilya Kovalchuk and much more including Summer’s thoughts on the current state of the Blackhawks and who on the IceHogs has impressed him in his visits to the Rockford MetroCentre.

Later in the show we discuss the blatant and unethical salary cap circumvention motives involved in Nick Leddy’s All-Star break supposed “reassignment” to AHL-Rockford.  Hint: Leddy never went there.  We discuss the Blackhawks’ upcoming 5-game road trip; what looks good and what looks to be dodgy.  Some notes on the next CBA negotiations, if Patrick Sharp was the right choice as ASG MVP, upcoming podcasts and much, much more.

And in amongst all of that, on a hockey show, we made space to discuss Snowmageddon!!, Shinsuke Nakamura, Satoshi Kojima, the GHC Heavyweight Champion Takashi Sugiura and the G-1 Climax tournament~!  Awesome.  I challenge you to find another hockey radio show anywhere with that kind of versatility.  Well, aside from Adam’s show.

Anyhow, enjoy, and thanks to all for listening.

TheThirdManIn~Radio, e.69, Right-Click to Download Here
“Pucking Around the NHL with Breakout! Hockey”

Click the player below to listen here in your browser.

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BlogTalkRadio.com/TheThirdManIn – For our entire archive
SUBSCRIBE to TTMI~Radio on ITUNES – self-explanatory

You can also find Adam on Twitter @Adam_Summers
He is also the co-host of the Adam & Mike Big Audio Nightmare, talking hockey, mixed martial arts and mostly Japanese pro wrestling at WrestlingObserver.com

Thanks again to Adam for joining us.  We’ll be back at least once more this week.  Superstar and I will be recording an experimental show on Saturday night talking Blackhawks-Blue Jackets, Hawks-Canucks and UFC-126 “Silva vs Belfort”.  I should also mention we will be drinking (perhaps heavily) during that show.

And we’ll return in our weekly weeknight timeslot next Tuesday, February 8th at 8pm central with a guest who is To Be Determined.

Until then, enjoy the snow and your silly big weekend ball games.

ChrisBlock@TheThirdManIn.com
Twitter.com/ChrisBlock

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