h1

U-G-L-Y

October 23, 2006

3-0 Sharks, and it wasn’t even that close.  Incredibly difficult to watch.  To the point where I was having a hard time deciding whether to be disgusted, sad, or angry.

Yes, I’m the guy who picked Columbus to finish tenth in the West this year.  And you’ll remember I said my predictions were unfounded and most likely wrong.  Still, even if I admit we have a relatively young and inexperienced team, I should be able to expect effort, right?

Plus (this should be short)

  • Gilbert Brule puts forth another strong effort.  Jes Golbez (at Hockey Rants) need not worry, I don’t think this kid is going anywhere.  He got his first goal of the season the other night, and he’s looking better every shift.
  • OK Tollefson.  Yeah, he’s only making the plus list because he laid some good shots on Mark Smith in their fight midway through the third.  I’m stretching, here.

Minus

  • Blueliners and centers failing to close down passing lanes in the neutral zone.  How many times did I see a cross ice pass go from the Sharks defensive zone to the forward waiting to go into the Jackets’ zone?  Too freakin’ many!  Wouldn’t you eventually try and get a stick out to stop that pass?  I would think.  But I’m just an incredibly frustrated blog writer.
  • Adam Foote.  Adam, I stuck up for you in my friendly disagreement with Bob.  And you’re letting me down.  I don’t like being wrong, Adam!  The entire third period, you were making passes with one hand on your stick, either taking stupid penalties or trying, and in general not keeping in position so you could “deliver a hit and a message” in one nice package.  Well, Adam… I think both the hit and the message came across to your fans the same way: “I wish I had signed with [pick any other team in the NHL except Phoenix] instead of Columbus.”  You took the dollars, and for that I cannot fault you.  If I’m in my late 30’s in the NHL, I’d probably look for the most money I can get.  But I’d like to think I’d give a 100% effort for those tens of millions of pennies.  Maybe my skills would be eroding from five or ten years ago, but I’d go out every night to give my team the best chance to win.

Adam Foote, one hand on the stick… again!

Adam Foote, with one hand on his stick.  See, it is real!  AP Photo/Jay LaPrete

  • Jackets fans crying for Jody Shelley after winger Alexandre Picard was hip checked into the glass (it was clean, just ugly).  Hits are a part of hockey, and that was a particularly good one.  If we had done that to an opposing player, you can bet you’d be slapping your buddies on the back, putting your hand over your mouth because you don’t want to look like you’re enjoying the violence too much, while in the back of your mind hoping that the guy doesn’t stay out of the game(s) too long.  Four years ago, that’s what this team would have done.  Kudos to the coaching staff for instilling a bit of pride in the players, and to Shelley for not aggravating an already desparate/frustrating situation when he did get out on the ice.
  • Jackets head coach Gerard Gallant.  As you walked off the ice at the end of the game, the FSN cameras caught you jawing with a fan.  The camera didn’t show the fan, so we don’t know if it was a San Jose or Columbus fan asking you, “how do you like coaching in the AHL?” (I’m guessing it was something like that.)  What the camera did catch was you saying, “Why don’t you shut the f(amily blog censorship) up!”  I was going to post something on this in a few days, but I’ll ask the question now.  How much longer does Gallant continue to coach the Jackets?  I think he can do it, but after seeing his outburst at a fan and letting that frustration out to the public instead of directing it properly within the locker room walls, I have to wonder.

Overall, I have to come back to the word pathetic.  I watched the second and third periods, and the Jackets did not look in the game for one second.  Quite similar to how they’ve looked for much of their last four games.

Game recap

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