i gotta say that when kelly hrudey started on hockey night in canada (back when the theme song was right and proper), he was terrible. like, TERRRRIBLE.... well, the dude's settled in nicely and offers some solid analysis week after week. oh, and he's apparently got dion phaneuf totally figured out.
early in the season, hrudey discussed how lazy phaneuf was on the ice, chalking it up to the long shifts that dion played under keenan's rule, and his warranted habit of "resting" on-ice. well, here he points out what we've all been seeing for months now: that he "makes so many silly mistakes and it's as though he doesn't think hockey very well." it's clear to hrudey, as it's clear to me, that dion often challenges neither the man nor the puck, and spends a freakish amount of time infront of the goaltender doing a whole lotta nothin' [a tendency that i poked fun at during the new years' eve game, telling my section-mates that i'd like to make Tshirts that read "what is dion doing ?" and on the back they would say "ohyeah... nothing" ... btw: i may have had a few heroin beers in me by then but i still maintain that the concept is sound].
the HILARIOUS part in this clip is that ron mclean (bless'im) tries to argue that phaneuf is like scott stevens, who didn't start his career with the greatest "hockey sense" but was still one of the best hitters in the game. milbury and hrudey immediately shoot that idea down by, essentially, pointing out that dion is not aggressive in his style like hall-of-famer stevens was... mclean, dejected and exposed, responds "nooo, i know... worth a try on my part." [just before the 2:00 mark]:
the REAL kick in the nuts, here, is hrudey suggesting that "maybe he's not a top 20 defenseman in the league, maybe he's a top 100."
mathematically (and remember that i'm not so good at maths), that breaks down to kelly hrudey suggesting that dion might be in the lower half of NHL-calibre blueliners (30 teams x 6 defensemen = 180 total bigleague level Dmen). i might remind you all that we're talking about a 6.5 million dollar defender with four years remaining on his current deal.... and that top 100 would put him in montador territory. hrudey does a good job of addressing how disappointing dion's contract v. gameplay is....
anyhow, there is some really good defensive analysis in this segment, some good commentary on regehr and bouwmeester (in addition to phaneuf), and i can only hope ryan mcgill ---the flames D specialist--- is telling the boys some of the same stuff....
in other flames' coaching news, shootout hero and call-up jamie lundmark thanks the team's other jamie (goaltending coach and former luongo backup, mclennan) for tips on how to get one past the 'nucks captain. he also credits being a couch potato and sportscentre junkie in the greater vancouver area, during his time with the HEAT in abbotsford, and being innundated with highlights of bobbylu on the telly. yeah, i might be making assumptions here, but the point stands: jamie lundmark doesn't just watch teevee, he STUDIES it. also ? there's clearly fuckall to do in abbotsford aside from practise, gametime, and sleep. ;)
good win by the boys last night, way to define the term "dig deep." hopefully they can pull out the same kind of effort against the avs tomorrow, and that kippy's eyes are a-okay. i'd like to point fingers at canucks fans for proving why everyone detests them, but realistically it was just one total douchebag with a super high powered nerd-device and a vengeance. i hope he/she had money riding on the game and lost big.
ps: this is how you deliver (and dodge !!!) hits like scott stevens for a measley cap hit of 892K :