Pookie predicts Tampa 3, Devils 1. Schnookie goes with Tampa 5, Devils 3. Boomer, Interchangeable Parts resident den mother shows her eternal optimism in suggesting the final will be Devils 2, Tampa 1.
At the game’s outset Chico tells us ZZ Pops is carrying the team on their shoulders. The following letter is composed: “Dear Batman, Robin and Langer, You are not the A-Line. Love, Schnookie.”
Pookie spaces out while Chico is talking and hears “Vinny’s hoping to get 50 tonight”. She immediately amends her prediction to 53-1 before realizing what he meant.
On his first shift, Paulie has a turnover. That answers the question that faces all Paulie Martin fans at the top of each game: will he be Paulie Perfect or Paulie Putrid?
12:01 Doc uses the euphemism for ugly babies, “alert”, to describe both teams’ play. Never a good sign.
11:29 Chico all but says Vinny will score 50 tonight. Does he know something we don’t? Hey wait, we all know what the Devils are like. Of course Vinny’s scoring tonight. (Chico on Vinny’s near miss: “He didn’t get 50. At least not yet!”)
8:53 Whitey for Hart! Replay shows he stopped Vinny’s first best crack at 50.
8:25-ish 1-0 Tampa. VIMOM (Vomiting in my own mouth).
8:04 PandoNation rejoices as Pando draws a penalty. Seriously, though, who feels the need to trip Pando? It’s not like he’s going to score…
7:12 “Clarkson is subtly brilliant!” Our PP? Subtly awful.
5:05 Why are the Devils not shooting the puck?!? The Bolts have a team save percentage of .880
4:45 Larry Robinson is in the building — the team is losing. Chico: “Larry always has a great spirit.” Schnookie: “Except when the Devils are breaking it.”
4:24 After Rupp makes a defensive play, Chico says he was trying to do “anything that disRUPPs” the offensive flow. HAHAHAHA!!!
1:10 It’s only for 10 seconds, but Batman and Robin are on the PK. It’s a miracle Tampa didn’t score.
0:13 Chico says Tampa was “reWARDed” by picking up Ward. He’s on fire tonight. If only he realized he was doing it.
No offense to Madden (oh, who am I kidding?), but since when is he one of our top three forwards?
Steve’s pant-jacket combo makes it look like his torso is sitting on top of someone else’s legs. This is incredibly disturbing. I can’t look away from it. He looks like a little-used Muppet getting a rare full-length shot.
19:14 Which Raffie will it be tonight? Putrid.
18:49 Schnookie: I don’t even have the will to be upset about Langer’s and Zach’s missed chance. This team is killing me.
17:15 Chico comments that not scoring for periods on end will eventually wear down even the strongest mental team or person. One can only imagine how wearing it is on the Devils.
15:05 Whitey turnover behind the net. The ensuing D is provided by the Keystone Kops. After a lengthy offensive flurry by the Lightning, Chico says, “that young man from Montreal is just keeping the devils in the game.” It takes Pookie an embarrassingly long time to realize he’s talking about Marty. Embarrassing for Marty, that is.
13:53 Paulie takes a minor for putridity.
12:27 Vinnie hits Prospal with a slapshot; is it too much to ask that he at least injure him?
Chico: “Not only is there a lot of talent on the Lightning power play…” Pookie: “But there’s not a lot of talent on the NJ penalty kill.”
Pando goes after a puck after the PK ends, and Doc says he “darts” for the puck. Boomer, remarking on Pando’s less-than-blinding speed: “A nerf dart.”
10:00 Oduya draws a penalty! Chico describes it as “an unusual play that works out well for the Devils”, and Pookie finishes for him, “unusual in that it worked out well for the Devils.”
9:14 Chico tries to say the Devs aren’t happy after a quick whistle and no-goal, but says more aptly, “they’re not happening.”
8:39 Zach puts it away emphatically. We were owed one. It’s his 29th. If he can’t get 30 he’s stupid, mark my words.
7:11 The love affair with Clarkson has ended. HOW DID HE NOT PUT THAT AWAY???? Pookie: “He’s a true Devil now.”
4:42 Lukowich puts TB back on the power play and Chico says the TB PP has done everything right but scoring. And therein lies the problem, Schnookie thinks. But she’s no expert.
FSNY show replays of the missed chances by St. Louis and Vinnie on the PP. Schnookie thinks Vinnie is toying with Doc, who really wants to call his 50th.
:30-ish: Marty lackadaisically lets a puck go behind the net to a Lightning. Schnookie: “I think he’s white-black colorblind and can’t tell the forwards from his D.” Pookie: “That would explain his trouble stopping the puck.”
More Chuck the Duck, including a seasick Chuck with a beached ship in the background. Seriously, Chuck the Duck may be the best (not neccessarily the most honest) man in the organization.
18:33 Schnookie: “It’s going to be a very short playoffs if we can’t figure out how to get the puck out of the zone on the first try.” Boomer: “Or the second.” Schnookie: “Or the fifth.”
15:00 Chico talks about Larry Robinson coaching players on how the stick can be an asset or a detriment. Schnookie: “More often than not? Detriment.”
13:43 Zach, in Doc’s description, “darts” and in the process looks slightly less nerfy than Pando. But only slightly.
13:26 Chico informs Doc that they’re a team when it comes to answering the trivia question. This sounds like news to Doc. But perhaps this speaks a bit to the reason why the Devils are more team oriented than the Rangers, whose announcers lie, cheat and steal to beat each other at trivia.
12:00 The Devils actually had a session of tic-tac-toe passing. Boomer: “They haven’t done that it months!” Schnookie: “Months? Years!”
10:10 Tampa 2 – Devils 1. Oduya sets a new standard for putridity in this game as his turnover leads to a Marty St. Louis goal.
The Devils didn’t used to ice the puck as much as they do now. They also used to be able to clear the zone. Maybe they should practice those things. Maybe they should practice. Anything.
8:16 Chico tells us Marty knows he can’t give up another goal. Boomer: “Marty should have come into this game knowing he couldn’t give up any!”
Several minutes later (we lost track of the clock) Chico starts some point, “All the Devils need is to connect two quick, good passes,” but we don’t hear how he finishes over our howls of laughter. And really, the point is moot because if there’s one thing this Devils team can be counted on for, it’s not being able to connect two quick, good passes.
Before too much longer: Tampa 3 – Devils 1. St. Louis again. We’re getting closer to Pookie’s call of 53-1.
A bit later: Vinny gets the puck right on Marty’s doorstep, all the Devils act as if Doc has paid them to let him call Vinny’s 50th, but somehow it is not to be.
This looks like Classic Devils Spring Swoon.
2:10 Schnookie: “This looks like a team that hasn’t practiced in weeks… OH! Right.”
0:42 Chico has promised us “drama” and “excitement” as the Devils are going on the PP with less than a minute in a game in which they’re down by 2. Has Chico never watched this team before?
0:00 And Pookie calls it! 3-1!
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