Please join us tonight as we enjoy an open thread and some woolgathering for the much-anticipated debut of IronBoarsylvania.
— Before this game starts, we have to ask — what is it with the Sabres always being the team the Devils play right after they lose a crucial player to an injury? Last year the Sabres were our first post-Marty opponent, and the Devils gave up 20 shots in the first period. We can only assume the Devils are giving up 40 shots in the first now that they’re reeling from losing Paulie. Because Paulie is twice as important to them as Marty, right? Right?
— The potential for Johnny Oduya to take over as the temporary emperor-god in place of Paulie suffers a serious blow when he stands around watching while some stupid Sabre scores a stupid goal to make it 1-0 Sabres. Sure, other Devils might also have been at fault, but we both had crappy days at work and are drinking wine with dinner. We’re blaming that on Oduya and moving on.
— Schnookie is extremely cranky tonight, and has also guzzled the aforementioned wine. In response to watching Boogerfors and Clarkson wheel around the Sabres zone with no purpose shortly after the early goal, she snaps, “Gah! I hate the Devils! Let’s watch the Blue Jackets instead. At least they’re in HD.”
— This game just keeps getting stupider. We have no idea how it happened, but suddenly it’s 2-0 Sabres. We were busy showing Boomer how to download a Battery Bar for her laptop, and missed the goal. From what we could glean from the surprisingly unillustrative replays, it was stupid. How long before Paulie comes back?
— Okay, so after the game got pretty far out of reach there in the first period (honestly, do the Devils look like they can overcome a two-goal deficit tonight?), we spent until intermission focusing our attentions on ordering an extremely exciting Devils-related holiday present for Boomer. Don’t tell her, though — it’s a surprise! Anyway, when we look up, Patty Elias is on our TV screen. Pookie squeals happily, “Patty! He is alive!”
— How far has Andy Greene come since losing Sutter as his coach? So far that when he scores on the PP to make the game 2-1 Sabres, Doc calls him Parise in his play-by-play. Then, when he realizes it wasn’t Parise, announces with complete disbelief that it was Greener of all people. Greene! Scoring on the power play! Who ever would have thunk it (other than us way back when Rafalski signed with the Wings, and we were all, “Pfft. Andy Greene is the younger, cheaper, BETTER Rafalski!”)?
— Late in the second period, Langer leads the Devils on a possible shorthanded odd-man chance, on which he is being defended by a guy with no stick. And when he goes to dish his telegraphed pass, he very carefully makes sure that it’s placed so that the defender can easily block it with his feet. Pookie wonders aloud, “Has Langer made a single good play yet this season?”
— Tonight’s “Chico Eats!” features Chico trying to defraud a local coffee establishment by using his comp tickets to get their Devils fan discount. Chico is such a rapscallion!
— SHOUT OUT! SHOUT OUT! Chico leads us in after a commercial in the third period with a little featurette about Crunchy’s mask. (Like we’ve never seen that before, just by the way. Find some new material, MSG+ 2.) And first he walks us through the “exploded Buffalo” on the front, then, when he gets to the back, he says, “‘Miller Time’. It’s a play on words.” (Okay, it probably doesn’t count as shout out when we’ve just been making fun of Crunchy all this time. Maybe it’s just hilarious that Crunchy is still, four years later, claiming that “Miller Time” is a “play on words”.) For the record, after the mask feature, Chico finds himself completely stymied trying to describe the hat Crunchy was wearing while showing off his mask. It wasn’t a fedora, but apparently had a “beak”. Chico, you can just leave it at “Crunchy was wearing a toolish/dumb hat”. We know what you mean.
— Also dumb? This game. Midway through the third, it’s 3-1 Sabres.
— When Goose tries to take Zach’s face off with his stick, Pookie realizes something we all should have known ages ago: Paul Gaustad can’t handle the Devils who are prettier than he is. That’s why he’s targeted Paulie and Zach. (That’s her theory and she’s sticking to it.)
— How many too many men penalties can one team take before someone on the coaching staff gets fired? (Pookie, ever single-minded, says when the Devils get called on the too many men during their power play, “When Lemaire was complaining about the too many men calls last time, I thought he was singling out Paulie for not paying attention. So at least this time I’m like, ‘It’s not Paulie’s fault!'”)
— The Devils take another penalty mere moments after killing the too many men one, and we finally decide life is too short to be watching bad hockey in standard def. We move on to find a different game in HD, ostensibly just during the commercial break. Not to watch for good, mind you. Just a nibble.
— We come back after the “commercial break”. It’s now 4-1 Sabres. Pookie, who mans the zapper at stately IPB Manor, says, “Whoops. Sorry we missed the goal. I’m going to assume it was Oduya’s fault.”
— Welp, that game was poopy. Thank heavens we’ve got Yodels and ANTM to fall back on.