Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Strap In and Warm Up ...or Else

The game: Colorado vs. Anaheim, the former with newly acquired forward Peter Mueller in tow.

Why I chose it: Cutie pie goalie is back, all Olympians are present and accounted for, and Portland Winterhawk/Anaheim Ducks prospect Luca Sbisa was just recognized in the pre-game ceremony. Do I need another reason? I think not.

For Portland Winterhawks players: Ok, let's try this again. Saturday Night, Rose Garden, 7 pm: Tri-City Americans are toast. T-O-A-S-T. Toast. With extra crunchy peanut butter. Here's my theory: I don't know squat about defensive plays or overplaying goaltending or not creating scoring chances or whatever else is out there in bloggerville. They got inside the net because they got inside your heads. Figure out how to put a stop to that, and the rest will follow. And if you could put a stop to it before Saturday, that would be preferable.

The rule: Section 2, Teams, Players and Equipment. Rule 223, Player's Helmet.

I don't recall seeing this in the NHL Rulebook: 223.a) During the game and during the game warm-up, all players shall wear a hockey helmet with chin strap properly fastened. 223.b) Where a player(s) fail to wear a helmet during the pre-game warm-up in International competition, the standby Referee shall report to the Chairman who shall report to the Directorate or the IIHF Disciplinary Committee. In National competitions, the procedure shall follow the national association rules in this matter.

This is better than the imaginary line: 223.c. A helmet shall be worn so that the lower edge of the helmet is not more than one finger-width above the eyebrows, and there shall only be enough room between the strap and chin to insert one finger.

So, I guess Nino Niederreiter was in violation when he pulled off that one-handed goal sans mitt in the skills game at the CHL Top Prospects Game: Rule 225, Players' Gloves. The players' gloves shall cover hand and wrist and their palm shall not be removed to permit the use of bare hands. If you don't know what I'm talking about, Google Nino, Portland Winterhawks and CHL Top Prospects Game or do the same on YouTube. You'll see what I mean.

Final score: Anaheim 2, Avalanche 2 with 4:30 to go in the second period.

Morals of the story:

The game: So, whose finger did they use when deciding on the helmet measurement? The honkin' big Sasquatch whose mitts are the size of footballs or little bony skinny fingers from an anorexic vegan supermodel in training who needed some extra cash and saw an ad in the paper that said "skinny hands wanted?"

Life: I'm a terrible morning person, so I need the pre-game warm-up rule to keep my weenie ass in line. Only in my case it would go something like this: If a single professional who has no kids and no dog to walk and no friends to call at 7 am cannot get his or her crap together and out the door in one piece with hair blow dried and minty fresh breath and coffee already made to put in the little portable mug you bought to save $20 a week at Starbucks by 8 am each weekday morning, so you can walk to the bus stop that's a mere 2 minutes from your apartment, said offense shall be reported to the Directorate for immediate disciplinary action, which will consist of said individual being dragged each morning at O Dark Thirty to an hour long boot camp workout, followed by special forces training on how to make your bed, style your hair and turn the auto-drip coffee pot on -- unaided by self-medication -- before 7 am.

Next up on 3/4: Section 2, Teams, Players and Equipment. Rule 230, Goalkeeper's Equipment.

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