Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Remembering the 2015-2016 Dallas Stars

(As the Stanley Cup Playoffs continue, we're bound to lose some friends along the journey. We've asked for these losers, gone but not forgotten, to be eulogized by the people who knew the teams best: One of their own fans because he's tired of media pushed unfunny jokes.)
*Blows dust off blogging keyboard*

Forgive me, for it has been a while, but I couldn't help but come across the Stars eulogy yesterday via Puck Daddy. Here I sat patiently avoiding some important chicken related business while hoping to be slapped across the face by someone on par with Eulogy heavyweights The Royal Half, Stace of Base, or two of my personal favorites Felix Potvin and MLSE of PPP. I mean Dallas was the second best team in the NHL and the top team in the Western Conference so surely everyone's favorite hockey blogger not named Sean Mcindoe sought out only the top tier Twitter talent to take on this tantalizing task. Instead we got a guy who is as relevant to the blog-o-sphere as Scott Glennie was to hockey. I applaud his effort though, as someone who apparently doesn't ever watch hockey, he sure nailed the forcefed NBC script. Thus, it is my goal to truly mourn this great loss today giving you the insight that you so desperately deserve.

It shouldn't have ended this way. With such a promising start to the 2015-2016 season and tons of talent, this was set to be an amazing year.  Sure it didn't start on the happiest of notes in seeing Rich Peverley retire, thus officially allowing the Dallas Stars to change the "Number of full seasons completed without a player almost dying in the middle of a game" to "1" with a strong hope that "2" was attainable.  The post season was the goal with sights set so much higher. It's weird to think that in the blink of an eye on a play so routine, an injury can change the course of your entire season. We'll never know how this year would have ended up had Tony Romo not fractured his collarbone, but I can imagine him holding the Vince Lombardi trophy over his head and kissing it while running laps around the field. Texas is football country and we shouldn't forget it.  Even everyone's favorite Stars owner Tom Hicks went out and invested in not just one, but two futbol franchises.  If that doesn't tell you that we're relegated to the back burner, then I don't know what does.  Realistically we know football is all Dallas fans care about.  Remember, we're in the minority, but just think, if Tony hadn't gotten injured and had in fact won the Super Bowl, maybe he still would have been off celebrating instead of bringing his horrible, no good, rotten luck to Game 7.

Then again, this was a team that shouldn't be eulogized, because it was supposed to be euthanized before the playoffs began. We know they were going to score lots of goals. They've been there and done that, but to win you need defense. Apparently the fearless leader Jim Nill heard this as de-Finns and despite all the goaltending talent available on the market for next to nothing, traded for Stanley Cup winner Antti Niemi. A goalie so well renowned by the team that he won a Stanley Cup with, that they immediately decided to part ways with him. If that isn't a vote of confidence, I don't know what is. Oh wait, there's more? This is also the guy who single handedly led the San Jose Sharks to choke-fest after choke-fest in the playoffs include blowing a 3-0 series lead? Well I'm glad the Stars signed up for that. Not just signed up, but signed up to the tune of 3 years at roughly more money than your whole family will make in their entire life time. None of this is new to you, the people spoke earlier.

Ironically, the percentage that voted "Your goalies suck" is almost identical to Dallas' save percentage this season
Thankfully, despite this A++ signing, we still have Kari Lehtonen available...every two out of three games that is. I'd continue down this hole of deep dark regret, but thankfully there is hope Stars fans. Jack Campbell is just moments away from taking the reigns and saving this franchise from its goaltending woes. Just as soon as he's able to wrestle away the starting job in the ECHL that is. No rush. While I know this is a tribute to the 2015-16 team, I know deep down everyone is already burying these two "keepers" and finding other viable solutions. Thankfully I see that everyone has pencilled in Henrik Lundqvist and Marc-Andre Fleury as our new goaltending tandem for next year thus proving that if you thought $10.4 million was a lot for goaltending, $14.25 million should look way better. The team in front of these guys should look amazing given that after the trades there will be six forwards and Jordie Benn. In reality, it really does make sense that the Stars set a new NHL record for empty net goals this year, considering it wasn't really any different than a normal practice for them.

A new Stars tradition in the Damnitjason household
It truly is a sad world when the best defender on your entire team is actually a guy sitting in a booth watching video replays.  The Stars are probably better off cloning Kelly Forbes and paying him $4.5 million a year to do whatever video magic he does so that Dallas can shutout every team from now on.  I'd even be willing to sacrifice whatever budget was spent on confetti and streamers for each playoff win to add to his yearly salary.  Then again, maybe an easier idea would be to not purchase the entire Nickelback discography for Grubes.

No need to pick on the Stars staff though.  They were the ones who tirelessly had to watch hours of Game of Thrones footage to be able to run the same three clips with different scripts that were written to mimic that of a twelve year old girl.  Ur bumin' me out Jason Danby.  Then again, you don't mess with adults who are able to accurately portray themselves as an adolescent because those kinds of people, they work for Chris Hansen.  Really I shouldn't pick on the Stars staff, it was the players themselves who are truly the ones to blame, right?  It's not like Celina Rae announcing the "We're never going to give away any Dr Pepper during this promotion" minute was responsible for letting in goals.  The players are the ones that play the game.  We could easily pick on the likes of Jamie Oleksiak, who the only thing he hit harder and more often than Nicolas Deslaurier was the press box popcorn bucket.  We could also pick on that one fourth liner skater who wasn't really that good for most of the season and got scratched a few times.  Oh what's his name?  No, not Travis Moen.  Oh!  Val Nichushkin!  
The only thing I choose is that you start learning to play hockey
Ultimately, it really is the team as a whole that is at fault and not any individual I may or may not have mentioned *cough Jason Dumbers cough*.  During the 1999 Stanley Cup run, the Stars listened to bands that would pump them up for each game such as Pantera.  It would remain reasonable that this year's team did something similar to ensure that they were thoroughly pumped up before every game, so of course they turned to world renowned heavy metal artist Shania Twain.

Don't get me wrong, yeah I think you're alright...just not Western Conference Finals alright
We can just start going through players too.  Kris Russell?  Russellmania?  He was the only 'mania to cost more and be more of an overall disappointment to the Dallas area since Wrestlemania 32.  Speaking of defense, who can forget Norris candidate snub John Klingberg who continued served up assists all season long.  If he served up anymore from his failed power play entry zone drop passes to the opposition, I'd have hired him to wait tables a few years back.  There is always one half of the two Wild and Crazy Guys Ales Hemsky.  If I had a dime for every time Ales dazzled me with a play and scored on his subsequent shot, I'd have ZERO DIMES.  Cody Eakin?  Let's just say that "Cody Eakin: playoff first line center" should never be uttered by anyone unless they are making a horrible and hurtful joke.  Maybe next year after another one year deal for Patrick Eaves he can fully immerse himself in his protective cocoon of a beard so that he doesn't break himself in urgent times of need.  Let's not forget a bright spot on defense in the emergence of Stephen Johns.  Did you know that, to emulate the man he was traded for Trevor Daley, Johns led the team in plus/minus?  On the minus side that is, but you can tell him that, I'd prefer to stay in one piece.  Oh and the captain Jamie Benn, well...*Insert unoriginal oral sex joke here.*  Sure we could go through and name every single player, but we really just need to get to one:  Mr. Alexander Marcus Flint Goligoski.  I know many of you have been salivating for this moment, as well you should.  Mr. G. was AMAZING all post season and it is a shame that he, along with the rest of the team has died.  He did after all send his home state team packing with a series clinching goal and tried his damnedest to do it one game prior as well.  His play was just about the only inspirational thing to take away from this mess left by Lindy and friends.  The thankful news is that he played so well this post season, that he will most assuredly get re-signed to an insanely overpriced multi-year deal that will leave us all wanting to slice our own achilles or wrists and bleed out from it. 

How do you not give this man whatever the hell he asks for?

It also would be unfair of me to leave out the playoffs guests that we welcomed with open arms into the AAC.  The Mild came to town without half of their roster which was actually a smart idea because had they brought everyone, Norm Green would have likely appeared and tried to move them to Houston.  This series also taught us that the old cliche "the most dangerous lead in hockey is a two goal lead" is purely fiction because the real most dangerous lead in hockey is one that the Dallas Stars hold.  Alas, even with a series lead, the Wild were so pathetic that even the Stars could not lose to them.  Thankfully for the next round, Dallas had finally figured out the Stanley Cup powerhouse Chicago Blackhawks.  They pummeled them into submission all season, sans one Chicago home game at the American Airlines Center as a courtesy to those fans who paid quadruple and quintuple the actual price of their ticket, just waiting for the eventual playoff series between the two clubs...which never happened because in the playoffs the rest of the world learned what we already knew: Chicago just isn't very good this year.  Instead, Dallas got to play the Blues.  Two main issues with this series included Ruff's bold plan to try an upgrade of the neutral zone trap and play six players AND a goalie.  The results were less than desirable.  The second issue was the power play.  I'd bury the power play with the rest of this team, but it was obvious Kurt Fraser had already taken it out back and buried it behind the House of Blues after the first round.  Maybe it really is the Texas football ingrained in me that I discussed, but I've never wanted to decline penalties so much in my entire life.  And like all good things, the Stars playoff journey ended, but...

Maybe we are the ones that need to be analyzed.  Take a look at yourself in the mirror, ignore the glitter fragments left in your beard, those are never coming out.  Take a really good look because this is where a blogger from some God foresaken city that actually experiences four seasons can't comprehend that we are all dead now too.  Not from the stress of actually being in a game that has real implications or from one too many Segs & Bacon burgers, but the stress from wondering what will happen if Nick Moroch touched the glass again.  What did we expect from a fan base so entrenched and behind their team that the first comments of exuberation after the playoffs were set were "why do we have to play a game so late at night?"  Well thankfully, due to all the bitching, the NHL scheduled some afternoon games that really helped our team out, so thank you for voicing your opinions.  And best of all, now you don't have to complain about any start times since the Stars are dead.

So good riddance to the Dallas Stars of 2015-16.  Put them in the ground and bring on 2016-17.  And if you don't like what I wrote?


As always, feel free to leave your comments, hate mail, and new Stars player burger ideas, or just stalk me on Twitter , because what better things do you have to do while at work? 

Sunday, February 22, 2015

50 Shades of NBCSN: A Masochists Guide to Tonight

I know I know, you’re not ready.  You’re still reeling from last night’s venture to rock bottom.  No, you weren’t hit with sports entertainment’s most electrifying superstar’s finishing move, though it probably felt like it, and no you weren’t pounding down beer at a former local brewery/restaurant.  You’re still dealing with the proverbial punch to the balls/ovaries from the Stars/Red Wings game.  Only a Leafs fan could properly explain what it’s like to endure last night over and over again, but it’s hard to get one to mutter anything remotely coherent as they’re all too busy putting pots and pans on their heads and muttering stuff about tanks.  Probably not best to mix with that conference anyway.
You need more time to rest. You need to be able to recharge.  Hell, you need time for the hangover to go away, but no, the NHL doesn’t care.  They not only want to bring you another game today, but they want to broadcast it on NBC Sports Network.  Yes wonderful reader, the NHL does hate you and wants you to know it.
Which brings us to tonight.  You need to sit down and buckle up if you're looking to get through this game between the Dallas Stars and Minnesota Wild.  First thing's first, NBC may well just spend 3 hours trying to figure out why the same team is playing itself.  If that's the case, then there truly is no hope for any of us.

On the plus side, this is an excellent showcase for Jordie Benn or whatever the hell NBC wants to call him today to increase his trade value.  I know some of you enjoy the running jokes that he’s bad and needs to go, but look at these stats from a week ago.  With the trade deadline looming, I’m pretty sure we could easily fetch a Shea Weber or similar especially signed at the low low cap hit of $700,000 through next season.  It’s the biggest coup this side of Martin Erat and that one guy who does the thing on the skates for Filip Forsberg.  Surely this piece of carefully researched and approved hockey information will go far in aiding our attempt to get maximum trade value.
Sadly, that's about where the good news stops.  The reality is, we need to prepare for tonight.  I’m not saying you should turn on the Oscars were the acting will rival any hockey player not named Corey Perry or Dustin Brown.  I’m also not saying that you should watch three hours of wrestling that, even while scripted, probably provides more of a surprise ending than the Devan Dubnyk shutout that will occur.  What I'm saying is that you need to mentally and physically realize what is going to happen.  We know Antoine is going to be called Dominic.  We assume John Klingberg will get another Klingman reference.  We would hand over our life savings to Vegas that they screw up something else factual if we could, but we'd never get the money line that they'd need to accept the bet.  First and foremost, pick up a roll of duct tape.  Aside from being able to fix many household issues, this will be the single most important item for the evening.  Why?  Because you're going to have someone tape your hands to the point where you can't pick up any sharp objects that you may want to hurt yourself with.  Safety first!  It will also double as an excellent mouth gag for when you want to start yelling profanities at the TV whether as a result of game play or the announcing.  Best and most importantly of all, this mouth gag will double as an alcohol prevention device.
An alcohol prevention device?  Why on earth would I recommend watching this game stone cold sober?  I know many of you were driven to drink last night and I respect that, but at the same time, you really need to do it responsibly.  The last thing any of us wants is to know the Stars can’t trade for Shea Weber because they have $100 million tied up in litigation due to fans families suing for wrongful death on account of alcohol poisoning.  So in the name of all that is Jamie Benn, I'm asking you to take one for the team tonight and lay off.  If you can't, then maybe you should watch the Oscars after all.

As always, feel free to leave your comments, hate mail, and non-alcoholic beverage ideas, or just stalk me on Twitter , because what better things do you have to do while at work? 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Movember Rain

For those of you that took Guns 'N Roses as the first title pun I'd ever use, please collect your 45,000,000 to 1 winnings.  Anyway, if you can't tell yet, I am participating in Movember this year.  For those living under a Mexican work boot, Movember is where a bunch of dudes, and that one lady from the circus, get together, shave their faces, and then grow some really bitching upper lip fuzz for an entire month all in the name of prostate cancer awareness/research.  In joining this wonderful cause, I've banded together with some Dallas Stars fans in an effort to make sure everyone hear's our message (NOTE: It is unwise to treat this like the penis game.  Yelling "prostate awareness" louder and louder isn't nearly as amusing.).  That being said, here's a nifty link that I've been provided with so make sure you click on it and give me half of your life savings or something.  Worst case scenario just take your mom or dad's credit card and fork over what you can, I'm not greedy (I just want to beat everyone else).

However, if that wasn't a convincing enough reason to donate, then I guess I will be forced to give you the top ten-ish reasons that you should sponsor me for Movember:

10)  It's tax deductible and everyone likes paying less taxes.
9)  The more you give, the more it grows...that's what she said?
8)  There's a really good chance that despite Crosby's head start, I can still grow something better than him by the end of day 2.
7)  If someone donates an insane amount of money, I might let them pick out which type of mustache I grow
6)  It's better to spend your money on the sponsorship than on the December 1st "Movember Souvenoir Hairs" auction that will take place on eBay.
5)  By donating you can at least feel quasi better about using the joke "I mustache you a question" all month long.
4)  I'd donate to your cause if it involved public humilation.
3)  Despite the name, it really has nothing to do with a crazy month long Mike Modano orgy...swearsies!
2)  I am willing to send a special mystery thank you gift to the top donation under my name. It might be homemade edible goodies, it might be some autographed memorabilia, it might be the unclaimed eBay mustache trimmings, YOU NEVER KNOW WITH THE MYSTERY PRIZE!
1)  Seriously people, it's for cancer research, help fix the world.

Thanks again for all the support...and laughter.

As always, feel free to leave your comments, hate mail, and DONATIONS!, or just stalk me on Twitter , because what better things do you have to do while at work? 

Monday, September 5, 2011

You Know You're a Stars Fan If...

Well folks it's been a while.  You see, here at Discard What You Don't Need we (and by "we" I mean "me," but it sounds more impressive if I have staff) went out and found important things to do during the day instead of pretending to work all the while surfing Twitter on our phones and playing Words With Friends non-stop.  Yes sir, now there are important tasks at hand like peddling chicken and pork snouts.  Suck on that old job at the Coconut Tree.

Now this also means that I'm not around during the day anymore to enrich everyone's life with snarky comments about the NHL and specifically the Dallas Stars.  So I'm going to just spill my thoughts here now without a fear of 140 character restrictions.  And yes, it means I'm getting to this before the NHL does, feel free to launch your "premature" jokes all you want, but I'm having my lawyers come after you when you steal one of my jokes because no one should be subjected to this type of unfunny humor more than once.  So without further ado, you know you're a Stars fan if...

- ...you remember a time when Stars vs Oilers wasn't a lottery ball competition, but rather a playoff series given.
- ...the torturous death you have planned for Tom Hicks makes the revenge kill scene in Law Abiding Citizen look like a relaxing day in the spa in comparison.
- ...you've ever cracked a joke offering someone a billion dollars.
- ...you know what a Woywitka is, but wish you didn't.
- ...you're going to name all your children either Jamie or Benn regardless of their sex.
- ...Martin Skoula (no really, that's the entire joke).
- ...you can't hear all the crying regarding an alleged foot in a crease because it's being drowned out by Queen's "We Are The Champions." (Seriously though people, it was, but we don't care, and they sure as hell wouldn't have won the next game in Dallas is they won that OT game)
- ...you're glad football season goes on during hockey season since it not only takes traffic away from Dallas, but it also means Jean-Jacques Taylor isn't going to write a single column about them until at least January or February.
- ...you not only know there is a Fox Sports Plus, but have the channel number memorized for your cable provider.
- ...the only reason you can laugh at the Patrik Stefan gaff is because you remember that we actually won that game in the SO.
- ...you wish the Ambassador of Fun stuck to that job instead of signing douchebags to deals we may or may not still be paying for.
- ...you know his name is Brian, not Darren you moron.
- ...you're terrified of the Ribiero/Ryder reunion because you have Turgeon/Young flashbacks.
- ...you remember a time before Dan Ellis was a self absorbed money mongering ass and was just a back-up goalie.  Oh...well, at least if you can remember that first part.
- ...you celebrate Cinco de Morrow.
- ...you knew Sergei Zubov was an insanely talented hockey player not just because of what he did on the ice, but because he was a pack-a-day cigarette fiend.
- ...you received your complimentary Jeremy Roenick jaw fragment courtesy of Derian Hatcher.
- ...you know the most beautiful hip checks ever seen did not come from Rob Blake, but rather Craig Ludwig.
- ...you never cared if Darryl Sydor played decent hockey in his second and third stints with the team because you knew his level of dedication after the 2000 Stanley Cup Finals.
- ...you would have traded Matt Niskanen for the opportunity to be subjected to the ebola virus and still felt like you got the better end of the deal...by far.
- ...you wanted Marc Crawford fired...like 5 minutes after he was hired.
- ...you remember how amazing Reunion Arena was compared to the acoustical shit show that is the American Airlines Center.
- ...you would have gone on a murderous rampage had Johnathan Cheechoo actually made the team in 2010.
- ...you've ever had heart palpitations when Marty Turco went to play a puck.
- ...you still giggle that we once employed a guy named Tugnutt (perhaps my friends only).
- ...you're pissed that I haven't mentioned Richard Matvichuk, Neal Broten, Mark Tinordi, Andy Moog, Mike Keane, Jere Lehtinen, Joe Nieuwendyk, Bill Guerin, Kirk Muller, Brad Richards, Aaron Downey's fists of awesomeness, or Mike Modano among other former players, but truth is none of them did funny things.
- ...you DON'T own a Mooterus jersey.  Those things are just horrible and no real fan would have ever purchased one.

As always, feel free to leave your comments, hate mail, and cell phone reminders so I can start posting again, or just stalk me on Twitter , because what better things do you have to do while at work? 

Saturday, April 9, 2011

And This Is What It's Come To...

Dearest Red Wings,

Do you mind if I call you Wingies?  I want to ensure you're really comfy and satisfied with that.  What about Wings McKings?  That connotates royalty and thus rich and prosperous things.  Ok, Wingies it is.  Have I mentioned I've had a cocktail or two?  Ya.  Let's start this over fresh, since technically that's what this is all about: starting over.

Dearest Wingies,

Have I mentioned how handsome and amazing y'all are?  Cause it's true.

Let's start by just putting our past differences behind us.  Those "Die in a fire" threats and "Dead Things" comments, I didn't mean any of those.  I was just joshing!  You know, like how Dustin Brown pretends he gets shot by a bullet whenever someone skates near him, it was all acting.  But ya, I never meant a word of those things.  Swearsies.  I mean you do have Mike Modano playing for you.  That's like the most favoritest Dallas Star in the entire world, thus A+++++, would cheer for again.

Can I get y'all some slippers and a newspaper?  Just an idea.  I mean if you need anything you just let me know.

Speaking of anything: remember when everyone in the world hated Todd Bertuzzi and I was the only moron that was willing to defend him in the sense that while I did not condone what he did, it was irresponsibility on both team's coaches as well as the refs part for what happened?  Ya...you should probably reward me for that very high profile backing.  I'm pretty sure I got a +1 on some forum boards for one of the comments I made.  That's high quality praise right there Wingies.

Anyway, enough flattery from me, I'm sure you get that from all the beautiful women that flock to your games as well as adoring fans.  I thought that maybe, just maybe you might want to help out someone as wonderful and supportive of your organization as myself.  How can you do this?  It's really simple: rip the entrails from the lifeless bodies of the Blackhawks on Sunday...I mean, please beat them in regulation.

Huh?  You'd rather have them play the Canucks instead of us?  Well what if I gave you a cookie as an enticement?  It'll be a good one too, not something plain Jane like sugar.  Oh no, we're talking something super delicious and exotic that would match your history.  I'm thinking Chocolate octopus chunk cookies.  Doesn't that sound yummy?

Close enough, right?

Just in case that amazing concoction doesn't sound appealing, I have taken the liberty of making a list of reasons why you would, nay!, should want to beat the Blackhawks:
-  They just beat you 4-2.  How disrespectful!
-  Pretty sure the Bowman's hi-jacked my twitter account and said a lot of nasty things about you over the past year.  Those jerks.
-  Mike Modano secretly still loves us...right?  No?  Oh.
-  Mike Modano would prefer to go through us in the playoffs after we defeat the Canucks for you.  Isn't that better?
-  Do you really want that punk ass bitch Marian Hossa to have a chance at the playoffs again?  After the shaft he gave you?
-  Because I'm writing you the most terrifical awesomest love letter ever, duh.

I hope all these reasons were super compelling and that you will take my suggestion seriously.

Much love,
Seriously though kill the Blackhawks for me,

As always, feel free to leave your comments, hate mail, and disinfectant so that I may cleanse myself after this post, or just stalk me on Twitter , because what better things do you have to do while at work?