We have some more new hockey blogs on the network.
First, it's an ex-Whaler, uh, Whale4Ever, running a Florida Panthers blog, Litter Box Cats. It's got pictures, and a pronouncement of Florida's signing of goaltender M. Brodeur! You can go there to ask why David Booth is who he is on the ice, how much it would take to get Jay Bouwmeester in a Devils uniform, and if he remembers how awesome it was when Scott Mellanby scored that the fans threw rats on the ice.
Second, there's Eyes on the Prize by Robert Lefebrve which is about the Montreal Canadiens. The team is enjoying their 100th season of existence as well as enjoying a return to the elite of the Eastern Conference. Anyway, Robert clearly has a passion for the franchise in ways I can't even manage. To say the content there is beefy isn't enough; it's like a 6 pound burger of hockey history, knowledge, and passion. I started reading some of what he has to say, and it's incredibly insightful - like his essay on the territorial right myth of the Canadiens.
There are additional plugs. Last night, Patrik Elias made all the difference against the Flyers. The game was sloppy with passing and puck possession being a challenge for both teams. Both teams adjusted and improved as the game went on. The Devils managed to stave off Jeff Carter and Mike Richards, limiting the two to a total of 5 shots and an assist (Richards). Gagne was kept quiet too; but according to the recap at NHL.com, Simon Gagne left the game early due to dehydration. He should be fine, the Flyers' PR Blog says he is OK and that he wants to play tomorrow. That's good to hear. Back to the game that's already old news. The downside of this game is that the Devils fell to two power play goals - the first being the result of a poor clearance by Jay Pandolfo right to the eventual goalscorer Kimmo Timonen and the other being an unfortunate deflection off Bryce Salvador's stick. I don't think the return of John Madden killed the penalty killers last night; the team just took too many dumb calls and the killers got beat on a bad fluke and a bad decision. Still, it's not easy to win hockey games when you're giving up goals on the man advantage.
However, a hard fought win was sought and earned. The Elias line was set up perfectly after Brian Gionta took a hooking call late in the third (and the Devils killed it!). Out of the box, Gionta was able to pounce on poorly played puck into the corner by Martin Biron, who did well overall last night. Gionta held it, tossed it to Elias who took a slapshot through Dainius Zubrus' hastily set-up screen and through Biron's legs and in with about 90 second left to play for the equalizer. Elias capped his brace with his fifteenth overtime goal of his career with an excellent finish. Colin White took an ill-advised shot from the point and missed; but the defensive defenseman decided to take a risk and follow that puck. He kept it in play, passed it up to Zach Parise on the sideboards and made a great pass to Elias. Elias beats one Flyer, goes to his backhand, slides it through Biron, and gets piled on by his teammates. A big road win and it's largely thanks to Elias. He had 7 shots on net, 3 that were blocked, 2 that missed, but was able to score 2 huge goals.
According Patrik Elias' Twitter, it was a big win. And, yes, Elias has a Twitter. OK, it's not going to reach the levels of Shaq's Twitter; but this is excellent that he's interacting like this. Also, he's giving away a signed puck - details at his Facebook here. So if you're into all that, give it a shot. Making a Fanpost is doable if you're a member here (and that's easy enough!), so if you want to give some props to Elias, that would be a good way to do it. I'll explain a little more tomorrow as to why I even have a big button for his fan page (a.k.a. his facebook profile).