Puck Podcast – April 4th, 2009

This week on the Puck Podcast we talk about another eventful week of games that completely changed the playoff picture in both the Eastern & Western Conference, we discuss Sean Avery getting back to his old tricks in Boston, we talk with Blues play-by-play voice John Kelly about St. Louis’ amazing season and their playoff chances, a tragedy that effects the Canucks and a whole lot more.

MP3 File

Here’s some video to go along with the topics we discuss on the show this week:

– Perhaps Craig MacTavish should have watched this before he decided to call for a measurement of Teemu Selanne’s stick:

– David Backes had four goals in one game against the Red Wings this week to keep the Blues playoff hopes alive:

– Sean Avery was back up to his old tricks as he hit Tim Thomas in the back of the head during a stoppage in play on Saturday:

– Christian Hanson, son of Dave Hanson of the famous Hanson brothers, has signed a contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs:

About Doug Stolhand 27106 Articles
Doug Stolhand is one of the co-founders and co-hosts of the Puck Podcast and has been a member of the NHL media since the show's inception in 2006.


  1. Gotta correct you guys, I think I’ve heard twice now (including in this week’s show) you guys say that the Penguins fired Therrien despite him “getting them to Game 7.” The Wings/Penguins Final went 6 games, not 7.

  2. Dustin – you are correct. Thanks for the correction and I will make a note of it in the show next week.

    No wonder Therrien got fired!

  3. Seriously, NBC? Can you give us ONE nationally televised game that DOESN’T feature the Red Wings or the Rangers? Just $&@#%ing ONE? Last week? Rangers. The week before? Golf. Thanks. This week? Wings. Next week? Wings. The week after? I don’t know, but I’m putting even money on it being a Wings or Rangers game! I know they sprinkled in Crosby or Ovechkin game earlier, but come on. And I won’t say those were Pens or Caps games, because it wasn’t like the NBC brass could give a crap about either of those teams beyond those players. This reminds me of VS dogmatic approach of giving us continuous Monday night coverage of the historically horrible Flyers. I know these teams are popular, but can we not even attempt- ATTEMPT- to grow the game by exposing at least mid-level teams to nationally audiences?

    Guess I’ll have to be happy with ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball coverage. The variety there is refreshing. Let’s take a look: Yanks. Red Sox. Red Sox. Yanks. Yanks. Sox…

  4. Seriously, NBC, thanks for showing the Red Wings again! It’s obvious why they are always on national television on the weekends, think about it a bit more pal. NBC is not interested in growing the game, that’s where you fall down…they’re interested in ratings. You know you’re a Wings fan, let it out. By the way, I believe Ozzy was in the net for the win today, again–that makes 50 wins in a season, again.

  5. Mark- I wear my Avs allegiance with pride. I will respect the Wing’s success, but I will always hate them. Never accuse me of being a Wings fan again. I am dead serious.

    I am not falling down. I understand NBC’s interest in ratings. I also understand that NBC will probably run away from our favorite sport when their contract expires because only two cities regularly watch their Sunday broadcasts. If NBC and the NHL want to get to a point somewhere down the line where a national hockey conciousness exists south of the Canadian border, they have to give cities a reason to tune in. I’m lucky enough that my NHL obsession allows me- forces me- to purchase Center Ice. I have been able to follow the NHL stories of St. Louis, Montreal and Boston all season. As well as watching my favorite team absolutely TANK an entire season. With such a small cable presence, the non-local NHL exposure to a large portion of this country is limited to New York and Detroit. And, ultimately, that is not healthy for the league. The NHL must think long term in order to survive.

    And, I’m sorry, Osgrip’s stats for this season do not lie. The Wings are winning despite his netminding by pummelling opponent’s with their offense. That is a scary prospect going into the playoffs.

    But at least they’ll be there…

  6. Oh wow, 50 wins for Ozzy…must be hard when he only gets 15 shots a game. And, the games when he gets 16 or more he tends to fall on his face.

  7. Now Doug is even thrashing Ozzy. Dave in Wichita, help me out.

    Doug: You know full well I meant 50 wins for the Wings, not Ozzy, but thanks for stirring the soup. You are of no help at all.

    Pat: Him facing few shots and that being the reason he wins? A straw man argument yet again. It’s amazing how that happens when you run out of facts. Maybe they should put you in net. My guess would be if you faced 15 shots, 15 would go in, understand?

    Kris: Didn’t know you were an Avs guy. Like you and the Wings, I loathe the Avalanche going back to the Patty Roy days. I will never forget the statue of liberty save he attempted in Detroit when the Wings finished him off with a McCarty hat trick. I respect your seriousness for the sport, we just see things differently.

  8. Doug: Then thanks for straining. I see I blew it in post #4 when I intimated that Ozzy was getting 50 wins.

    On another note, go MSU tonight!

  9. Mark- Be sure I avoided VS tonite… And I have fun with the old rivalry, I hate the Wings with the passion of a thousand exploding suns, but I respect their winning ways. And that McCarty hat trick still kills me… Dammit. Hey, have you ever read “Blood Feud: Detroit Red Wings v. Colorado Avalanche” by Adrian Dater? Great blow by blow account of the late 90’s- early 00’s rivalry. Highly recommended for anyone interested…

  10. Kris: I have not read that but appreciate the tip, I will get it. It must be interesting for you watching Claude play for the Sharks now.

  11. Here’s the schedule for the USHL Division Semifinals are now out and the last 8 will get the playoffs get underway on Thrusday night.

    East Division
    #1 Green Bay Gamblers VS. #4 Waterloo Blackhawks
    #2 Cedar Rapids Roughriders VS. #3 Indiana Ice

    West Division
    #1 Lincoln Stars VS. #4 Sioux Falls Stampade
    #2 Omaha Lancers VS. #3 Fargo Force

  12. Kris, Osgood is now 10th all time among goaltenders in wins (with less games played than Hasek), and that includes seasons where the Wings did not finish first overall and time playing in New York (49 wins) and St. Louis (35 wins). I’m tired of the Osgood bashers finding the one thing they can focus on, be it a goal from center ice or a sub-par season. It’s like me saying Patrick Roy sucked because Colorado was so good and because McCarty could put the puck past him at will. I’m not saying Osgood is as good as Roy, but be realistic – over the past 15 years he’s been better than anyone ever gives him credit for. And on any other team, you might expect a goalie making under $1 million to have low numbers.

  13. Sorry, Osgood is making $1.7 million apparently. But I believe he signed for $900,000 when he came back to Detroit, before getting an extension.

  14. Wow – sorry I missed the fun, guys! I am so busy lately, I have still not gotten to listen to the Podcast this week.

    Kris – I was SO pulling for the Avs tonight against the Sharks (don’t tell Mark in Hockeytown, or my sister) – that was my kind of hockey on VS! The goalies are getting most of the credit (and Budaj is earning it as I watch). I am glad to see the Sharks getting humbled like the Wings have lately at home.

    Okay… so the Sharks just won the shootout, but that was a fun game to watch.

    As much as I have been worried about Osgood, I am convinced this team will pull it off in the playoffs. You have all sipped the kool-aid and think the Wings will do the first-round-dive. Now it’s time for you to see how a well-coached, talented team gets the job done. The reason ‘Osgrip’ is not facing so many shots is because of the defense (and puck-control offense) in front of him. Don’t forget that. And that same defense is also the offense that scores the winning goals. I am still a relatively ‘new’ hockey fan, but I am learning that even having a great goalie, like Ward (or Ozzie) is not enough, by himself, to take you all the way to the Cup. This will be a fun playoffs to watch….

  15. This is fun… I see that Doug is Lurker!

    Oh, and if (WHEN) Darrin McCarty scores a goal in this year’s playoffs, I think that I (and a million other fans) deserve a Kris-purchased beer at Cheli’s Chili Bar!

  16. I just want to voice my two cents on Ozzie:

    I am a Blues fan. While in St. Louis, I loved the guy. For whatever reason, he got a bad rap here. We wanted to blame him for every goal and the fans were done with him before he even got traded here. He supplied a year and a half of above-average goaltending, yet how did we treat him? We only hated him because he gave us so many years of trouble in Detroit IMO.

    I will say now though that the guy is horrid. Come on Dave and Mark, you watch every game! I have Center Ice and I pay attention to the Wings, as a Blues fan, and watch all of the mistakes he makes! Its not just the goals; how many times have we seen him fumble the puck or leave a fat juicy rebound right in front of the crease? I agree, the money he is making now doesn’t mean he should be elite, but how do you expect to make it through the playoffs if he can’t make 16 saves a game?

    Don’t worry, you guys will probably sign back Legace next year and he will be lights out in every game against the Blues. We deserve it after the way he was treated here.

  17. It isn’t like I am an Osgood basher. I don’t look for bad things to say about the Yugo but if someone comes around and says it is a good car I am going to say otherwise.

  18. Also Mark in Hockeytown you are using the logical Fallacy “straw man” wrong. I think what you are looking for is “cum hoc ergo propter hoc”. Incidentally you are guilty of the logical fallacy of “affirming the consequent”. Good goalies have good win percentages but that doesn’t mean that all goalies with good win percentages are good.

  19. Mathew: Have a lot of time on your hands, eh?

    If you’re going to use a Latin phrase, better to use it on someone that doesn’t understand Latin. This “fallacy” has to do with the order of events, more than anything else, causes more specifically. What I’m trying to convey, unsuccessfully, is that one person (Ozzy) is not alone responsible for success or failure, in any sport, on any team. Ozzy is not succeding only due to his talent, or failing only due to his talent—so in the end, it does not matter, the team matters. If you don’t understand that, you’re hopeless.

    Kris: Just noticed that you might want to avoid Versus again this weekend…

  20. I HAVE TO keep telling myself Osgood is a great goalie… it’s how I can sleep at night.

    Even the biggest Wings fan can’t argue that Osgood’s numbers don’t suck (a double ‘negativus’ to add to the mix).
    3.11 GAA
    .887 save % (only SLIGHTLY ahead of last place Legace)

    But he’s gotten 26 wins on a 2-goalie team. That’s the number that counts for more. A win’s a win.

    In the spirit of ‘cum hoc, ergo propter hoc,’ maybe all you Wings fans can chip in and get me tickets for all the playoff games… they have won every game I’ve been to this season… all one of them… (and Conklin was in goal, come to think of it).

  21. And, speaking of numbers, I just noticed an interesting fact. The Flames are 1st in their division locked into the playoffs, and their goalie is 1st in wins with 45. But they also gave up 242 goals in the process… the most of any team with a shot at the playoffs right now. I’m just sayin…

  22. Let me clear up something regarding Osgood. I am talking about this season ONLY. His career numbers are not up in the stratosphere, and I never think he’ll have that sexy “it” that goalies like Hasek had, but Cups is Cups. I will give the man his due, he’s backstopped great teams and he SAVED the Wings playoff run last year.

    But, for whatever reason, I do not think he has it this year. And I believe he will be exposed in the playoffs, just like Hasek, Theodore and Price were last year. I will allow that maybe his experience will pull him through and he’ll put I together, but I’m not going out and putting $$ on it…

  23. That’s some major backtracking Kris. Now all we need is old Nick in Kingston and Mat to do the same and the Wings fate will be complete. Knew you guys would come around.

  24. Mark what I am saying is that the Wings talent makes up for Osgood’s poor performance.

  25. Kris: I get it, just messing with you.

    The Wings’ collective talent makes up for a lot of things, like on any deep team. It makes up for defensive and offensive gaffs all the time. What I’ve been trying to convey is that no matter how many shots the guy faces, in the end, he still has to stand on his head some time, some way nearly every game. To minimize him due to being on a good team is wrong.

  26. Oops, I meant to address the last one-liner to Mat, not Kris. The rest of it, is to you both.

  27. I finally got to listen to another fine addition of the Puck Podcast. Thanks guys. And looking forward to the Day In The Life video…

    Doug, in regards to your response to Mark in Hockeytown about Coach of the Year… while I have enjoyed watching the Blues’ much-earned success and am hoping to see them make the playoffs, i feel the need to take umbrage with one coaching comment. You said something about, “…replace Babcock with someone else and they would still win.” Babcock is not any less of a great coach because of the talent that his GM has provided. Just look at the years when Dave Lewis was there – he stepped in after the great Scotty Bowman and proceeded to plunge the Wings into mediocrity.

    That said, I hope Mike B. can prove what a great coach he really is and overcome this lack of goaltending at the worst time, and how they seem to give up may 19th-minute goals. If he pulls that off, the debate is back on for sure.

  28. Dave in Wichita said: “Babcock is not any less of a great coach because of the talent that his GM has provided. Just look at the years when Dave Lewis was there – he stepped in after the great Scotty Bowman and proceeded to plunge the Wings into mediocrity.”

    Dave Lewis proceeded to plunge the Wings into mediocrity? Really? They won the Central Division both years he coached them and the Wings earned 219 points in those two seasons. If that’s mediocrity than may the Ducks be mediocre for the rest of my life.

    If anything that proves my point. Even a coach like Dave Lewis can get 110 points and a Central Division championship out of the roster Ken Holland puts together so why would I be impressed that Mike Babcock accomplished it?

  29. Dave: Doug is hopeless on this topic. He’s never gotten over Babs leaving the Ducks. It’s that simple.

  30. Yes – I’m hopeless. I continue to evaluate all of the head coaches each season and don’t simply hand the award over to the coach of the Red Wings if/when they win the Central Division. Again, if Dave Lewis can coach this team to back-to-back Division titles how hard can it be?

    Answer me this, Babcock believers – If Babcock is to be applauded for coaxing a good season out of the Red Wings roster why would he deserve the Jack Adams over Todd McLellan – the rookie head coach whose team earned more points than the Red Wings? Or Claude Julien, who also coached a team to more points than Detroit?

  31. And thanks for refreshing my memory, Doug, about the Lewis years (which I tried to forget). I only remember them tanking early in the playoffs and, after the standard that had been set, that was mediocrity for the Wings. My memory sucks, but that’s how I remember it. If i am wrong, then touche.

    To try and answer your question Doug, I think that the arguement for Babcock will be if he can pull this thing off without the top-notch goal-tending that seems to be a key in the playoffs. I am not an expert on how the Jack Adams is awarded but, if it includes contributing to greatness in the playoffs as well as during the regular season, then I think there’s a case for it. Maybe Mark can make a better case than I can, though.

  32. I have no issue with McLellan winning it in San Jose, after all, he’s from Hockeytown and I was sorry to see him leave us. I also have no issue with potato head winning it in Boston either. Both teams have talent, which has been my point from the beginning. The award should be considered for coaches handling a team with great talent too, not just fired coaches landing somewhere to get scrubs to play up to their innate level.

    How hard can it be? Try it sometime. Dave Lewis got a bad rap from national media. You don’t work with Scotty Bowman that long without learning something.

    I can’t wait for the Wings to pick apart the Ducks in the playoffs while they constantly waddle in and out of the penalty box.

  33. Doug- As the Florida Panthers have become the team of choice to someone I love, today is tough. She has followed the Kings and now the Panthers, so she has not experienced the emotional mayhem of playoff hockey. But she was invested in Fla’s run with her heart and soul, so she has to be crushed tonight. Just ONE more win! They were, what, fifth at one point? Argh…

  34. I would rather not see a coach that runs a modified trap win the coach of the year award. I just do not want to see that style of play encouraged.

  35. OK so there is a very good chance that AO gets MVP this year. While he is a spectacular player I do not think that he deserves the MVP. To be quite honest I think this is a rare year where the rookie of the year should get the MVP award. When AO did the antic where he pretended that his stick was on fire I had to laugh. Yes, he has a ton of goals but I wouldn’t say that anyone with a 10.5% shot percentage has a hot stick. He has proven the old adage, “if you put the puck on net good things happen.”

    Looking at the top 35 goal scorers
    32 of them have a better shot percentage
    Only one other person has more average TOI than AO and he is a defenseman
    He is tied for last for the worst goals per TOI.
    He has lobbed 184 more shots on goal than the next closest person.

    To put this into perspective if Crosby had taken 522 shots on goal this season.
    With Crosby’s 14.04 shot percentage he would have 40 more goals this season for a total of 73.

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