April 12, 2007

Sens Game From Portland

Posted in hockey at 10:28 pm by Mike Milinkovich

I’ve been traveling this week and was in Portland for the first Sens playoff game. It really sucked to be away, but I ended up getting very lucky. My colleague Anne recommended Claudia’s as a good bar to go to watch the game, and she was very right. I had a great time!

As it turned out, there was a small but feisty contingent of ex-Ottawans who now live in Portland who use Claudia’s as their Sens-watching HQ. So thanks to Tom, Jeremy, and Kelly for helping me cheer on the Sens to a kick-ass series opener.

The Sens played a very convincing game. They took aways the Penguins time and space through their trademark combination of a super-strong forecheck (Schubert!) and a steady, physical defence (Phillips, Volchenkov). I wonder why the two Penguins fans in the bar left early? 🙂

April 9, 2007

Playoff Angst

Posted in hockey at 10:29 am by Mike Milinkovich

So the Desperadoes survived the round-robin playoffs undefeated. Generally speaking that would be a cause for celebration. However, two wins and three ties in five games is not what I would call convincing.

The bad news is that the team has just not been playing all that well. The other teams in the league have stepped up their play while we’ve been coming out pretty flat. I guess the one consolation is that despite not playing our best, no one managed to beat us.

The good news is that we finished on a bit of a high note. I thought that our game on Saturday was a much-improved effort over our game on Wednesday. The team was looser, skating harder and just generally playing much better. And that was with a very juggled line-up. Not one of our regular forward lines or defensive pairing were together that game.

This weekend is the finals, and I am pretty optimistic that we have a good shot at winning it all. The best news is that we have everyone back from vacation — including Brandon, our #2 goal scorer who has missed the past three games — and all of our regular lines back together again. If we play the way we did in the Almonte tournament, we should have a great weekend.

Go Desperadoes!