Wednesday, April 23, 2008

CSI: eriksson

i can't give up the anger and dismay on the eriksson issue, so i thought i'd open up the game summaries, event summaries, & shift charts of the last two games, to examine (in microscopic detail) what exactly went wrong to make this trainwreck of a defenseman commit an NHL murder-suicide last night.

i'm still angry that keenan started the game with #8 paired with dion, knowing what an absolute liability he is, but i am forced to concede that bubba had a pretty decent game 6. in the flames' 2-0 win on sunday, he played 21:46 ---largely with phaneuf---, including minimal time on each the PK and PP. he ended up a +2, with an assist on the insurance marker, and clearly contributed in kipper pitching a shutout. without knowing his playoff history, it would have been impossible for anyone to predict such an utterly complete meltdown in game 7.

part of me wants to be medically thorough in this dissection, but that would require watching last night's match again in its entirety... and i'm a coroner, here, not a masochist. my first query would be "why, on his FIRST SHIFT, did phaneuf, nolan, conroy AND tanguay get a change, while eriksson played on an additional 40-or-so seconds ??" if the answer is (and i presume it to be) due to the dozens of calgary icings in the early-going (bubba being on the far point), then i blame keenan for not noticing his (presumed) fatigue. eriksson's first shift clocks in at approximately two minutes. reason enough to be one step behind your opponent five shifts later, thereby taking a hooking penalty ? i'd say yes..... SJ leads by one and the flames get jittery.

phaneuf comes out with regehr on the first shift post-goal and it's clear keenan's not impressed with bubba's play/infraction as he benches him for three full minutes; nearly two of those after calgary ties it up at ones. two shifts after that (both times paired with dion) owen nolan and ryane clowe get offsetting minors and eriksson doesn't see the ice again until after calgary scores, 3 1/2 minutes into the second period. that's almost five full minutes of riding pine, with three of those minutes at 5 on 5. phaneuf, during this period, spends time with regehr, aucoin, and vandermeer (who, by returning to the defensive corps, makes it impossible for keenan to continue rolling 4 complete lines like he did in game 6).

on eriksson's next shift, now 5-or-so minutes into the 2nd period, SJ ties it up. keenan obviously realizes that eriksson is a detriment to the success of the team and, presumeably, only puts him back out on the ice reluctantly (but with few other choices) with regehr in the box, seven minutes later. on this shift, even though he's clearly rested, eriksson is no longer paired with phaneuf. can he be hidden better on the PK if he's playing with sarich ?? the answer is, apparently, yes.... at first... but as reggie's infraction expires, and before the penaltykillers (read: eriksson) can get a change: SJ goal #4.
hello, nail ? meet coffin....

buh bye momentum
buh bye kipper.
buy bye eriksson for the rest of the night (save for a couple of useless short shifts towards the end of the third).

to sum up anders eriksson's game 7:
2 penalty minutes (= SJ goal)
13 shifts
1 hit
2 blocked shots (i chalk this up to luck more than anything)
and all this in a STUNNING 9:26 TOI. think about it. that's INCREDIBLY brutal....

if sutter can't deal him this summer, he'd better buy him out. this goes for rhetto as well (sorry buddy, but the dream is over). if eriksson turns back up in a flaming C come training camp, i'll be out for sutter's head. remember, this useless blueliner is largely the reason that sutter couldn't commit to giordano....

worse than zyuzin.
fo' reals.


awildermode said...

about that assist in game 6. it looked to me that iginla passed the puck to tanguay...but it bounced off eriksson's leg...tanguay to langkow, goal. iginla had the assist, but stolen by a stinky sock (or eriksson, whatever you want to call it). he may have been skating at the bench at the time, so totally not his doing at all.

just more fuel to your fire.

Kent W. said...

Eriksson's relative "success" at home can be explained by last change and Keenan's penchant for running Dion+partner behind Jarome Iginla. His +2 has everything to do with his linemates and nothing to do with his ability.

Just a terrible hockey player. Worse than Zyuzin? It's a tight race, that's for sure.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, worse than Zyuzin (that was my text, right?) Agree with Metrognome's assessment on the "success" and wondering why Sutter hasn't had to answer seriously to the Eriksson question in the media. (Or has he and I haven't noticed?)

walkinvisible said...

D: your text was "he's worse than zyuzin. fuck. can regehr play the full 60 minutes ?" which goes down as one of the best hockey related texts of all time.

i maintain #8 was directly responsible for two SJ goals in G7 (lost his man on the 2nd & 4th SJ goals), & indirectly responsible for another two:
- stupid penalty (SJ goal #1)
- cold goaltender (SJ goal #5), which was a result of the 4th SJ goal (where eriksson lost his man)....

i'm SO not over this yet.

too bad hockey players can't get fired.

RobWoolley said...

We may not be able to fire him but I suggest we look to our friends in the south They seem to have an solution.

Granted there were other issues besides Anders but damn he was so glaringly bad the other problems just seem trivial.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps Chicago will take Eriksson for the Robert Lang contract? WE LOVE $4M Blackhawks!

walkinvisible said...

rob: ironic first name, hunh ?