Puck Podcast – May 3rd, 2008

In this episode of the Puck Podcast we take a look back at an eventful week in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs with analysis, highlights and recaps of every game. We talk with our playoff correspondent L.A. Kings goalie Jason LaBarbera to get his perspective on the goaltending changes in Montreal and the rest of the series as well as discuss some controversial calls that involved video review, an amazing playoff run for a player called “The Mule”, an interesting poll involving the NHL, a player getting way too much hype and Eddie will tell you about a stereotype that he believes is right on the money. All that and a whole lot more in this episode of the Puck Podcast.

MP3 File

To see the Puck Podcast Play Of The Week click on “Doug” in the top right corner or click on the link listed under “Latest Posts” along the right hand side of this page.

Here’s a look at Doug, Jason LaBarbera and Eddie when the three of them got together to watch Game Four of the Canadiens/Flyers series.

About Doug Stolhand 27034 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. I couldn’t disagree more with the “hotline call of the week” and both hosts, you’re getting stale. It’s obvious to any hockey fan that the Wings rarely get the respect they deserve and it’s because of airing simpleton calls like that. I too love the guy’s passion, I just disagree with him. If the Wings under-perform and get knocked out of the playoffs early, critics say they are too old, or, break them up and start over. If they do well, critics say they should do well and it’s no surprise. None of you feel there’s any skill in managing the egos/skill on a team like the Wings? Last I checked, Osgood is a backup goalie, this year he’s an all-star and I guess he got that way all by himself. Hasek was one of the top 5 goalies ever, this year, insanely inconsistent which is why none of us here are surprised about the goalie situation. What the Hell does Babcock have apologize for having these two guys in net this year? This is a cap world, they aren’t buying their team like in a pre-cap world. Do a little homework and see what round Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Holmstrom, Franzen, Samuelson, Kronwall and Cleary were taken in, it’s surprising. When exactly did the definition of “coach of the year” become simply: the coach having the best record with the s***tiest bunch of bums in the league, with the lowest expectation of success?

  2. Great post, Mark. Don’t be surprised if that gets read on the show next week! I’ll save my comments until then.

    Niklas Lidstrom won’t tell us, but perhaps you will – which team are you hoping the Red Wings play in the Western Conference Finals?

  3. Mark:
    Very well said. I would have to agree with you on all points in this case. The Red Wings don’t buy their teams, they draft them. My favorite team is New Jersey and I believe that these two teams are the best at drafting players and finding unrecognized talent. That’s why these two teams have been so successful since the mid 90’s. I definitely know how it feels for your team not to get any credit. All you ever hear is that Brodeur is the team and no one else gets credit. In my opinion Brodeur clearly lost them the series to the Rangers, much in the same way that Price lost the series for Montreal. Montreal clearly was the superior team but bad goals can be quite deflating.

    Also, I think the league gives the Red Wings credit as Doug’s examples show but they definitely don’t get credit from the average hockey fan. Like most of the star players on Detroit, John Madden, Brian Rafalski (now a Wing!), Jay Pandolfo, Brian Gionta were all not drafted!! The Devils also seem to find guys like Johnny Oduya (who is very impressive) and Mike Mottau (who will be very good with time) as well as Zack Parise and Scott Gomez taken relatively late in the first round.

    With Regards to the Jack Adams Trophy, Babcock is the best coach in the league. I say this because he clearly knows the game, speaks extremely intelligent about it, and I love his style of coaching (based strongly on Ken Holland’s views and others). Puck possession teams thrive during the playoffs because they control the tempo and their opponents must adapt to their style. If they don’t like it I would like to see them take the puck away from Detroit which doesn’t seem possible right now!

  4. Doug: Thanks, look forward to your comments and sorry about the language, I get worked up on these things. With the cliche’ “be careful what you wish for” I am hoping for Dallas. Marty Turco has a horrible record playing in Detroit and I think we match up well with them. Additionally, the players always mention how the travel takes it’s toll. Chelios said the other day, losing or gaining an hour is tolerable, 3 hours is wearing at this time of the year. I guess in the end, it’s a decision I base on goalies and therefore, I’d rather face Turco.

  5. Mizunoman: You are obviously tuned into the Wings organization. Ken Holland sets the tone here, it took Babcock one season to figure that out and how to work it. Babcock plays no favorites and ice time is earned. Yzerman had a problem with it, Shanahan had a problem with it and Robert Lang had a problem with it. In the end, they all figured out that if they play well, they dress, if not, he won’t hesitate to yank anyone out of the lineup. You picked up on how deep the organization is here as well. Jim Nill, Mark Howe and all their European scouts pull these guys out of nowhere and the system here (Holland, Babcock, Yzerman, Bowman) make them great players. This is why I was incensed at the caller claiming that Babcock was not deserving. Let’s remember, in the end around here, they play for Babcock or they don’t play, he sets the tone and deserves the credit. Eddie Olczyk and Kevin Allen of USA Today were calling for him to win the Jack Adams over 2 months ago–well before they got into the playoffs. 3 (50) win seasons in a row for Babcock is impressive in and of itself, no matter where you get your talent. Lastly, we always felt that Rafalski was a good fit here, he and Lidstrom play like they have played together for years, it’s a testament to the Devil’s organization for all the same reasons. Lastly, I was crushed to see Montreal lose, they deserved to win last night but I think at times, Price was a boy among men out there. After watching this series with this rookie goalie, it’s obvious there’s a fine line between being calm and collected and a bit lazy. If my son stayed down on his pads when he played goalie as long as Price did, I’d of yanked him. At times, I got the impression Price didn’t quite understand the seriousness of what he was doing, he just looked TOO relaxed. He could easily become a Cam Ward where one year he’s talked about constantly and the very next, you never hear about him, hope I’m wrong.

  6. It bears pointing out that Jim Rutherford is an ex-goalie, while Doug Risebrough is a former checker for the Dynasty Habs in the ’70s and the Flames in the ’80s. So really, the skaters are outnumbered by the goalies, 5-4.

  7. mark, you are right that the wings don’t get the respect that they deserve but, then again, neither do the stars. we have been told by many “experts” that we will lose in every round of the playoffs and yet we just keep winning. yes, do be careful what you wish for. this is not the same dallas stars team that you saw during the regular season. i don’t know how many stars playoff games you have seen, but this team has definitely stepped up their play since the playoffs have began. turco has played out of his mind during the playoffs and there is no question who is the captain of this team. morrow has lead by example, not only offensively but with huge hits (just ask milan michalek).

    i will agree with you that the wings are definitely talented. players like franzen, zetterberg and datsyuk alone would be enough for most teams but they go even deeper than that. even with all of that talent, it took them six games to beat eight seed nashville and then sweeping an injury plagued avalanche team as they should have. i don’t believe that the wings have been really tested during the playoffs so it is difficult to say what they are truely capable of doing.

    sure, if you want to talk statistics, turco has not played well against the wings in the past but statistics also show that dallas has not been a good playoff team and turco not a good playoff goaltender in the past. i know i am a stars homer but i would take turco over osgood any day. the real question is how dallas will handle the wings forecheck and neutral zone pressure. if they do, it could be a long series for osgood and the wings. i still remember jamie langenbrunner scoring on osgood from center ice on osgood in the ’98 western conference finals ten years ago. yes, osgood’s numbers are impressive during the playoffs this year but he has not been tested nearly as much as turco (61 saves against the sharks in game 6). i believe if the stars can avoid the odd man rushes that killed the avs and cut down the dumb penalties, this could be one hell of a series.

  8. Barry: I can’t say I’m not worried. I watched all of the Star’s games and if we do it, it will be no cake walk. Good luck to both teams!

  9. Oh, and speaking of polls, have you guys checked out that SportsNation poll about overtime, in the wake of that marathon game between SJ and DAL? It’s almost like The Worldwide Leader in Poker hates hockey or something. 😉 Happily, about 3/4 of respondents like it just the way it is, thanks.

    Along a similar line to Mark’s points about managing egos and skill, there’s also the point of keeping players motivated. I read Ken Dryden’s The Game a little while ago, and there were a few insights into the nature of the dynasty Habs — and by extension other elite teams — especially as they were winding down in 1979. It takes a certain kind of motivation to keep a team that’s extremely good, and knows it, from phoning it in against an obviously inferior opponent, and I think Babcock’s done exactly that. They could’ve relaxed after the first intermission in Game 4 in Colorado, but they kept flying. He sounded apologetic for it, yet at the same time, I’m pretty sure someone would’ve gotten a talking-to if they’d become lazy and let a needless chance/goal occur. He also made the necessary adjustments during the Nashville series after Hasek wet the bed to keep things from spiralling out of control, which is another mark of a good coach.

    Of course, I’ll still favour Carbonneau, of my mom’s Canadiens, even though I think both Boudreau and Babcock are both more likely to win, but there you go.

Comments are closed.