Patrick of the U.S. celebrates after scoring the fourth goal against Finland during the first period of their men's ice hockey playoff semifinals game

The Residents Of Mt. Olympus

Well now we know the official numbers of Hawks and who’s going and who’s not. The Hawks will have 10 Olympians in Sochi, barring injury to either them or someone else causing yet another Hawk to fill in (Seabrook and Saad could both be first call-ups in that situation, as could Crawford I suppose but doubt). They are:

Slovakia – Hossa, Handzus

Czech Republic – Rozsival

Sweden – Hjalmarsson, Oduya, Kruger

USA – Kane

Canada – Keith, Sharp, Toews

WE DON’T HAVE ANY COMMIES CUZ WE DON’T NEEDS ‘EM TAKE DAT POO-TIN!

Anyway, some random thoughts:

-I love the furor you get with Team Canada snubs, as if they’re not always going to bring an obscenely talented roster even if you just used a dartboard to pick the team. Is there really a difference between bringing Taylor Hall or Sharp?

-While I agree with my colleague McClure’s points about why he doesn’t care about the Olympics, I guess the soccer fan in me still kind of enjoys the international game aspect of it. And hey, we don’t get to wave the flag much through sports. The three games the US will get in the World Cup in Brazil and this is basically it (though I really do think they can get out of the group of death but that’s a soccer discussion best left for the bar and not here). No one cares about Olympic basketball, even basketball fans find it a nuisance. And as Americans generally disappoint me, this is a time for me to feel patriotic I guess? It’s rarer than I’d like.

-Obviously, that is overshadowed by my worry for the Hawks. But if you look at it, really the max anyone can play is seven games, and to do that you have to not win the group and still progress to the Gold Medal Game, which was Canada’s path in Vancouver. I don’t know if that’s rare but it’s certainly not the prescribed method. Slovakia and the Czechs could easily end up playing five or even just four games, and Hossa and Rozie and Handzus still could get something close to a full week off before returning to NHL action. Hell, that fate could befall the US too if they don’t beat Russia in the group stage and then get clocked by Sweden (my pick) in the quarters or something. Seven games is nearly an added 10% onto the already laborious NHL season, but it’s not like every Olympian is going to go through that.

The travel is the big worry. 5,000 miles each way and then after the return journey there won’t be too much time for recovery before being thrown back into the NHL grinder. But it’s not like the Hawks are exclusive in this. The Blues also have 10 Olympians. The Ducks have five (I think). The Kings have six (I’m assuming Voynov goes but anything happens with Russia). The Sharks might have a real advantage with both Couture and Thornton staying home, as well as giving Boyle a rest. But those three Pacific teams have to all get through each other first.

-Basically, in March the Hawks are going to have to find a way to have those who didn’t go carry them for a bit. By then I’m sure the lines will have been reshuffled anyway, so we’ll see. I don’t think in March you can keep the Red Wedding Line together and hope they’re not exhausted and then pray your bottom six can carry you when it’s not already. More sprinkling will have to be done.

-The Hawks final game before the break is Feb. 7th, and the tournament doesn’t begin until the 12th. So that’s five days of something of a break, though it’s flight and practices and orientation and the like so it’s not exactly restful. If I recall in 2010 it was only about three days.

The Gold Medal game is the 23rd, and the Hawks are in New York on the 27th, four days between. Not enough to recover from that long of a flight, but more than nothing I suppose. The max amount of Hawks that could participate in the Gold Medal game is six in a Canada-Sweden final. However, whoever biffs it in the quarters will have a full week before the Hawks play again. So if you’re paranoid, root for that.

-It’s hard to project how this will go, but I’ll do my best here. Clearly, Sweden and Canada are going to waltz through their groups. Finland is about the only thing that might hint at a challenge for Canada, and Rask or Niemi is going to have to sacrifice a goat in the crease to make that happen. Sweden’s only tough game in the group will be the Czechs, and the Czechs just aren’t any good. So they will be 1 and 2 seeds, in some order. Probably Canada top overall.

Both the US and Russia could get the auto pass into the quarters (the second-best second place team gets one), but it’ll come down to goal-difference and such as the Finns should beat up on Norway and Austria. Smart money says the Swiss make it hard on the Czechs. That’s if everything goes as you think it should, but there will be slip-ups here and there.

So if I had to guess, either the Finns or the US will have to slide by Latvia or Slovenia in the elimination round before facing the other in the quarters. But we’ll do this more in depth before the tournament.

  • Fleshrifle

    Everyone must drink a bottle of slovenian wine for Anze Kipitar/dad coach story on NBC.

    • derlemke

      Is it yummy wine?

      • Fleshrifle

        Lots of sugar. Fortified for extra special hangovers.

        • mightymikeD

          it’s basically Tokaji, isn’t it?. oh the pain

          • Fleshrifle

            Per Wikileakpedia:

            Other uses of the Tokaji appellation..In Slovenia, in line with the EU prohibition the wine of Goriška Brda and Vipava regions are renamed Sauvignonasse.

          • mightymikeD

            man, that stuff is nice in one tiny glass with a meal.. drinking a bottle (as I have done) leads to rats trying to gnaw their way out of your skull

    • 10thMountainFire

      Share the story. I’ve been waiting.

      Gaad.

      • Fleshrifle

        Kopitar made the team, brothers on it. Dad is coach. And there are about only like 200 people in the country who play hockey. They are ranked 25th or so in the world but qualified for the Olypmics.

        • 10thMountainFire

          Awesome.

  • derlemke

    What would be the difference this year with the Hawks players in the Olympics versus 2010? Age, distance, terrorism? I don’t like the fact our guys have to play extra games. The thing that worries me is the recent terrorist attacks in Russia, which I believe were conducted by Chechen rebels.

    • mazer_rackham

      My concern is the extra wear-and-tear that the mileage and games will put on players at the end of the year, but pretty much any cup contender is going to have strong Olympic representation so it will probably be a wash.

      Worrying about terrorism is like worrying about your plane crashing or an earthquake making your hotel fall down. Let the people whose job it is to worry about terrorism do that, and just enjoy the games.

      • 10thMountainFire

        Without the Olympics, they’d still be playing in the NHL, though, right?

        • derlemke

          yeppers

          • 10thMountainFire

            LOGIC’D!

          • mazer_rackham

            well allow me to retort

        • High and Wide

          Actually, in a non-Olympic year, some of them would be off for the All-Star break, yeah? (Many of them, of course, would be playing/”playing,” but it’s not the same travel-wise etc.)

          • steeg of their own

            With the All-Star break, it’s the hangovers rather than the travel that take their toll.

          • Accipiter

            Most of the players do not go near alcohol during the season.

          • 1benmenno

            And they abstain from sexual congress.

          • Accipiter

            Not according to Collins.

          • 1benmenno

            Freudian slip on her part.

          • Z-man19

            what about copulation?

          • 1benmenno

            Also not allowed in congress.

          • 10thMountainFire

            What other kind of congress even works?

          • High and Wide

            What on earth are you talking about?
            *CAREYPRICEFLASK.GIF*

          • steeg of their own

            Iggy’s face in the background. He’s just /cracking up/.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I was laughing at it, too. He was roaring.

          • Guest

            THEY WOULD NEVER

          • High and Wide

            wow, my incredible overenthusiasm to correctly post this gif really paid off in the end. SORRY GUYS

          • steeg of their own

            Carey Price is a gift. That’s the same ASG where Duchene got caught on mic the next day telling someone that he was still hungover.

          • High and Wide

            “TOO MUCH VODKA”
            I love Carey Price so much. Also he was obviously at least a couple sheets to the wind during the skills competition while mic-ed up for CBC, slurring mightily, and it was the greatest. He decided to try to stop a breakaway while facing the boards and looking for the reflection.

          • lizmcneill

            “Someone” has curly blond hair. Oh Kaner.

          • lizmcneill

            Bless your everything, Carey Price (except your glove hand when you’re playing the Hawks, ofc).

          • 10thMountainFire

            Players chosen for the Olympics would likely be playing in an All-Star game. No numbers to substantiate that but… my guess.

          • 10thMountainFire

            And I mean Hawks players. Of course… not including Frogger, Oduya, and Hammer.

      • derlemke

        Oh I’ll enjoy the games. The recent attacks were a message.

      • thepuckstopshere

        Still concerned about the security, but then again I understand “The average Ruskie son don’t take a dump without a plan”

        Lets hope everyone enjoys the experience and the bling they will get!

        • Bannerman

          Custer had a plan

          • Z-man19

            a bad one

    • 10thMountainFire

      Dagestan and Chechnya were involved. I won’t go further because it’s not hockey related but don’t worry about it. Things will happen elsewhere more than likely… but not in Sochi. That’s my best guess.

  • 10thMountainFire

    I guess I’m one of the few that really loves international hockey. Coincidentally, I also love international soccer. I really enjoy seeing the extra motivation players have in representing one’s home country. This is a time when places like Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Sweden, and Finland get to go toe-to-toe with the big boys in Canada, Russia, and the US. This is when they get noticed on the world stage by people who otherwise couldn’t find them on a globe with a dictionary and a microscope. I take extra pride in Patrick Kane representing our country as well as our team. I remain indignant, upset, and pantsless until Saad is added, however.

    Re disappointment in Americans. Totally get it. You’re not wrong in any way for being disappointed much of the time.You’ll find people who disappoint you everywhere, I’m sure you’re aware. It just seems that we have to look harder to find Americans to be proud of. We have a good example of innovation via business right in our back yard. Rocky Wirtz turned around a franchise left for dead. He’s not only a model for how to run a business but he’s made so many of us happy time and again these past six years. For me, Rocky is an example of how Americans and businesspeople can hit home runs at times.

    • derlemke

      Here here. I really want a World Cup of Hockey, but I don’t think they’re enough countries to field this.

      • Fleshrifle

        World Championships? And Olympics every 4 years. Should be good.

        • mightymikeD

          I used to work with a couple of Latvian Hockey fanatics.. those guys are crazy but great. Sure love fights, though

      • 10thMountainFire

        I’m not sure about that. Italy, Germany, France, and Denmark may be secondary in talent but they could field teams that would not be a joke in an international tournament a la the World Cup of Hockey idea you have there. I like it.

      • laaarmer
        • steeg of their own

          Well yeah, but because it takes place during the playoffs most of the really good players aren’t available. I think they’re organizing a World Cup for 2016 that will take place during an NHL schedule break (like the Olympics) so that everybody is available to their national team.

          • laaarmer

            Some teams don’t make the playoffs, eh?

            Anyway, there is already the tournament derlemke is typing.

      • M7

        They have had a “World Cup of Hockey”, albeit somewhat irregularly, since 1976. It was originally called the Canada Cup and was hosted off of the tails of success that was generated by the ’72 Summit Series. It was played at regular intervals between 1976 – 1991, and was then renamed the World Cup in 1996. The last iteration of the tournament was in 2004. The event was always played in late August finishing in September before NHL training camps broke. It was awesome. Beginning in 1995 (so for two events) games were hosted in virtually every country. The medal rounds have always been in Canada or the USA, however.
        In addition, the tournament has never had more than 8 teams and in the early Canada Cupo days only had 6 (Czechoslovakia instead of Czech Rep and Slovakia). In 1984 Germany took up Finland’s place at the table over some kind of contractual dispute or something.
        Anyways… the format began as a round robin (5 games) followed by a semi-final and a best-of-3 final. In 1996 (World Cup) the event moved to 2 groups of 4 and in 2004 the best-of-3 final was dropped in place of a single game.
        List of Winners
        1976 – Canada
        1981 – USSR
        1984 – Canada
        1987 – Canada
        1991 – Canada
        1996 – USA
        2004 – Canada
        Prior to the ’98 Olympics in Nagano, this was the only international hockey event that brought together the best-on-best. It was never diluted by smaller hockey nations which was probably a good thing back in the day. Now? I think it could be reasonably expanded to include more teams if the yearly World Championship is any evidence. Denmark or Belarus or France isn’t gonna win, but they can sure throw a wrench in the works for one of the medal hopefuls.

        • steeg of their own

          This is the one I was talking about that’s being scheduled for 2016.

          • M7

            Yep. There’s a lot of discussion up here alluding to the fact that the NHL is highly unlikely to go to Korea for the 2018 Olympics. My personal belief is that the World Cup idea is being brought back to mitigate the loss of best-on-best competition.

        • 1benmenno

          In 1987, Canada beat Russia in one of the greatest games I’ve ever seen. This is how it ended, with Hawerchuk centering a line with Gretzky and Lemieux.

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ruloAuFazcg

          • 1benmenno

            And, yes, Hawerchuk got away with a hook.

          • M7

            The Hawerchuk/Sutter line was a monster that game. Hawerchuck in particular with the hook as well as the face off win on the winning goal.

          • 1benmenno

            As a Jets fan (at the time; the current incarnation in Winnipeg are still Thrashers in my mind), seeing Hawerchuk make such an impact was really gratifying.

          • M7

            The greatest. I remember every game like it was yesterday. Also Gretzky’s comment (of that winning goal)…”No offense to Larry Murphy (who was driving the net), but there was no chance the puck was getting passed to him instead of Lemieux!” – Paraphrased.

            If you want some good video of that event, check out these video links… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYMlZ8TiJX4

          • Accipiter

            I think you are forgetting Keenan.

          • M7

            That prick took Rick Tocchet over Cam Neely and Wendel Clark. Fcuk him!

          • 1benmenno

            Thanks for reminding me.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            My heavens. What memories.

          • jordyhawk

            Let’s not forget the courageous attempt to thwart the Canadian rush by none other than ertswhile Blackhawk rearguard Igor Kravchuk.

        • bizarrohairhelmet

          Just look at the rosters in the 1996 final. Probably USA’s strongest tournament team.

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gE5gN2SIuMg

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Neale and Cole … two of the best ever announcers. The rest of it I didn’t absorb.

          • Z-man19

            Canada lost Chico

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Something that doesn’t exist can’t be lost, z. It’s like the pride of a man who can’t even win a gumball bet.

          • Z-man19

            I know that stung you, at least a little bit. The bet and the above game

          • bizarrohairhelmet

            seeing Amonte score the winning goal didn’t give you a little twinge of pride?

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            I was devastated. But no, you’re right. (This might be blasphmeous, incidentally, but I never really liked Amonte. Roenick, yes, absolutely loved him–Roenick then, not now–but Amonte always seemed to rub me the wrong way.)

          • 10thMountainFire

            Well now they’re both proven douches.

            /Boston’d

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Pity, eh?

          • 10thMountainFire

            Two guys who by all rights should be ambassadors-in-the-making for a resuscitated Hawks franchise are almost persona non grata with the franchise because of stupid remarks (Amonte) and irrational hatred (Roenick).

            At least Eddie and Cheli have made amends.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Agreed on all four accounts.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I remember right where I was when Amonte scored that goal.

          • Accipiter

            Not on the internet ?

          • 10thMountainFire
          • bizarrohairhelmet

            Me, too. Aspen, CO at the annual Motherlode volleyball tournament. Days were full of mountain biking and beach volleyball girls and evening were spent watching the WC.

          • M7

            Yep, that American team was certainly well stocked. Richter was at, or near, the apex of his career as well. Beating him that tournament was like trying to shoot through a 4×6 brick wall.

    • Fleshrifle

      I could watch Latvia and Slovenia on Int’l rinks with their flags waving, and I love it. Every year is boring. Playing in the 5 Oly Rings…hell yeah that’s cool.

      • 10thMountainFire

        Lemme tell you something about them Latvians, Flesh.

        What three of them did with me in 2009 has indelibly made me love their country. Not many people know the stories about how these countries have sacrificed with us the past 12 years. As Americans sometimes we’re self-absorbed, self-obsessed, and not capable of noticing other countries and their contributions. There are many, many, many stories about other countries’ sons and daughters standing with us these last 12 years. Canada and Latvia among the most stark examples.

        Off my soap box. Just wanted to say… Latvia rules.

        • Fleshrifle

          Your service rules…and we can’t say it enough. Thanks

          • 10thMountainFire

            Latvians are awesome. Truly. Plus, they love hockey.

          • VanDorp’sMullet

            I have a feeling Hossa loves Latvians, too.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Me and Odin, we’re like/this.

          • 1benmenno

            VDM and XMF: Tico and the Man.

          • VanDorp’sMullet
          • 1benmenno
          • 1benmenno

            Sorry XMF. I just like saying Tico (meaning Costa Rican).

          • 1benmenno

            You’re exactly how I imagined. XMF looks a little worse for wear.

          • 10thMountainFire

            My mom says I’m good looking.

          • VanDorp’sMullet

            I have a feeling Loki is a huge hockey fan too and is primarily responsible for the Leafs last year and the Canucks pretty much every year.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Isn’t that Marcel?

    • Beth

      The 2010 gold medal game was the first hockey game I ever watched. It was fast, entertaining and incredibly skilled. It made me rethink my distaste for what I thought of as WWE on ice – really not for me. Then having a team to root for that was also fast, entertaining and incredibly skilled without being too facepunchy really helped my love for the game grow. I will always have a soft spot for Olympic hockey for teaching me there’s more to hockey than fighting and giving me a sport that I now love.

      • 10thMountainFire

        What you got out of it is why international hockey works, in my opinion. It draws new fans. Glad you’re aboard!

      • Slain

        Beth, This is the exact same way I found and fell in love with hockey. Thank you for sharing!
        I did not take long for hockey to become my favorite sport. If it was not for that fantastic gold medal game, I would still be under the “I went to fight and a hockey game broke out” mentality. I am so excited to watch every single hockey game of these games!

    • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

      I love the international game. More room behind the net, wider rink, and an arguably cleaner game. Never happen here, cuz fighting, you know…. and you’ll never get NHL owners to sacrifice a few rows of ice level seats for a better product.

      • Accipiter

        The international rink has a lot of useless ice, (especially useless is the 100 foot wide aspect of the rink) which allows for too much play on the perimeter. Some rinks in Finland (maybe elsewhere, too) have been adjusted by adopting a size that is halfway between the dimensions of NHL and IIHF standards, somewhere around 92 feet wide, which seems like it would be better suited for today’s NHL (player size and speed).

    • Paul the Fossil

      I get into that disappointment place fairly often regarding Americans nowadays, particularly my fellow native-born Boomers. But an antidote which has more than once been refreshing is the perspective of someone who chose to become one of us. Particularly naturalized citizens who came here from other wealthy societies e.g. some Canadians and Europeans I used to work with. Or for instance this guy:
      http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304137304579292470756058590

      • 10thMountainFire

        That’s an incredible article.

  • superman_damned

    ” Is there really a difference between bringing Taylor Hall or Sharp?”

    Versatility, mostly. In favor of Sharp. He can play center or wing. He can PK. He’s solid defensively, while Hall is… not, to say the least. Considering the line combos for Canada have been rearranged every single time they hit the tournament, it’s better to bring the guy that can play two positions. Plus chemistry with Toews surely helped.

    • derlemke

      I don’t know why, but I want to see Sharp play with Getzlaf.

      • 10thMountainFire

        So Sharp can steal the spotlight, thereby pushing Kaner higher on the Hart candidacy list, making Kane happy, a happy Kane is a Stanley Cup Champion Sharp.

        • derlemke

          un huh

          • 10thMountainFire

            I’m just trying to find ways in which this matters to me… and how it correlates to Hart Trophy winner Patrick Kane.

            Anyway, Sharp with Getzlaf is an exciting proposition…

    • High and Wide

      Just for starters, I bet Sharp could pass an open-book boating exam on the first try …

  • ChicagoNativeSon

    Oh I know the chunky who left these Chunkies nachos!

    • 10thMountainFire
    • ChicagoNativeSon

      Downboats? Wow, some people really, really, hate Seabrook.
      (or possibly don’t get the concept of sarcasm)

      • laaarmer

        Seabrook will make them all pay!

      • Bullitt315

        You can’t please everybody!

      • mightymikeD

        rec-whore…. :p

      • http://www.our-founding.com/ Toews still makes funny faces!

        I blame Common Core math for the Seabrook hate!

  • Paul the Fossil

    I’ve generally no use for the Olympics, summer or winter, haven’t for decades. But modern Olympic hockey is the one exception just because it amounts to an all-stars tourney of what in my household is referred to as the One True Sport.

    • 10thMountainFire

      You don’t enjoy bobsledding? The luge? Come on, Paul. Them is entertainment right there.

      • derlemke

        You forgot speed skating.

        • 10thMountainFire

          Only if Colbert is skating.

          • derlemke

            You still in the military?

          • 10thMountainFire

            Rotated to reserves but only for now. Should be out completely in weeks.

          • derlemke

            Well congratulations from a former Marine.

          • 10thMountainFire

            /America’d.

            Appreciate it and thanks for what you did. I’m supposed to hate you because I’m green. But I love you because we’re red, white, and blue.

          • derlemke

            Together we can hate on the Air Force.

          • 10thMountainFire

            We can hate them until we need them… and then hate them again afterward.

          • AF_Cheddarhead

            Hey, you sure like us when the A-10s show up.

      • Paul the Fossil

        Well I would like to _try_ bobsledding sometime. Maybe even the luge too, though that particular form of lunacy might require so much liquid courage that I’d end up unable to remember the experience so arguably what’s the point.

        • 10thMountainFire

          …or the pain from the crash…

          • M7

            Remember that a guy died during a luge training run in 2010. Very sad. He had only been at the sport for a few years and called to tell his dad he was scared of the track before he died.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Yeah. That was among the saddest sports stories that I can remember hearing in years.

        • 1benmenno

          How about skeleton? Face-first.

    • raditzzzz

      you mean an all star tourney where people actually try? winning formula…

  • 10thMountainFire

    Khabibulin undergoes successful(?) surgery on right rotator cuff. Out 4-5 months.

    /Stan’d

    • derlemke

      He’s probably in Thailand or somewhere.

      • 10thMountainFire

        Waiting on a beach for Johnny Two Points.

    • VerStig

      Wait, I thought it was his groin?

      • 10thMountainFire

        You and I were both dead wrong. Unless ‘groin’ means ‘rotator cuff’ in Russian. I am not proficient enough yet in my Russian to confirm or deny…

        • BrandonPirri

          Mark Lazerus said on Twitter that it was his groin, but I guess the rotator cuff injury had been nagging him from before the groin injury (also it was a good way to keep him on IR for another 4-5 months? /conspiracy’d).

          • Joe Banks

            You can tear your rotator cuff while pulling your groin.

          • 1benmenno

            Golf clap.

          • Bullitt315

            Your shoulder hurts? We should probably fix that while you’re still on the Hawks dime. Nudge nudge, wink wink.

          • lizmcneill

            Rocky: Dammit Stan, more dead goalies? *pulls out wallet*

          • bizarrohairhelmet

            Stan: (points to statistical comparison of Khabi and Raanta this year)

      • derlemke

        Stan did state he hurt his groin in Nashville but required shoulder surgery from a previous injury.

      • Joe Banks

        Groin injuries are “catching”…

        • 1benmenno

          Slow clap.

      • bizarrohairhelmet

        So I guess this is the deal the Hawks offered Khabi to keep everything quiet.

    • steeg of their own

      And all the Hawks fans breathe a collective sigh of relief.

      • Accipiter

        Through their mouths ?

    • Paul the Fossil

      Can’t help wondering if it wasn’t a Potemkin surgery like were done for this study:
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/07/020712075415.htm

    • Joe Banks

      Is that his “Vodka” shoulder?

      • 10thMountainFire

        Right shoulder = drinking shoulder. Nice catch.

        • Accipiter

          Pouring shoulder.
          He has to be drinking with both hands.

          • 10thMountainFire

            He’s a serious Russian.

          • Fleshrifle

            Are there any other kind?

          • 10thMountainFire

            Drunken, misogynistic, angry, literate, old, young, and ex-.

          • Bullitt315

            At a certain point of alcoholism, you just drink out of the bottle.

          • 1benmenno

            in the parking lot.

          • bizarrohairhelmet

            After running into a cement mixer. (before as well, obviously)

          • 1benmenno

            pantsless

    • bizarrohairhelmet

      Oh, good! He’ll be back for the playoffs!

  • steeg of their own

    So basically the Hawks are guaranteed at least one medalist, and more likely we’ll have at least two different colors of medal coming back from Russia.

  • Bannerman

    Why can’t the Hawks just be their own country?

    • steeg of their own

      That would be unfair to the rest of the world.

      • Fleshrifle

        Wouldn’t Rocky/Johnny Mac immediately throw a Casino in the UC if that was the case?

    • ChicagoNativeSon

      Scum tried to do that once, but alas, there’s no country for old men.

  • laaarmer

    No Seabs no winz

  • Paul the Fossil
  • High and Wide

    Shoutouts to Sweden and Finland for crashing IIHF.com earlier today, we see you out there grindin’

  • steeg of their own

    RE the difference between Hall and Sharpie: I heard an interesting thing today, from Sportsnet 590s PrimeTime Sports show. Apparently Babcock is keen to run 4 forwards on the PP, and this was a significant factor in picking the team. If true, then the fact that Sharpie regularly plays the point in Chicago is a major checkmark in his favor over someone like Hall.

    • Fleshrifle

      Whereas the Hawks run 4 forwards out on the PK?

  • mad-hatter

    lol Zus on international ice is gonna be hilarious

    • 10thMountainFire

      That’s what Kane said.

      • mad-hatter

        He’ll probably cry out of happiness when he sees Kesler next to him.

        • Paul the Fossil

          Though it will be interesting in a different way if Handzus has a strong tournament.

        • lizmcneill

          The USA is going to win or lose at some point….he’s crying anyway.

          • mad-hatter

            Bless his little heart.

          • lizmcneill

            “My mom says that people don’t know that I’m a very emotional person.” Kaner, your mom was not telling you the truth.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Momma’s boy!

            And thank God because since his mom lived with him in Switzerland, dude shot to another level.

        • justforkicks

          especially since as of today’s practice he’s still seeing zus right next to him

    • putmeinthemadhouse

      What’s your reasoni ng here? International sizing is more suited to players who are crafty with the puck and make good passes. Speed is more important on nhl sized ice

      • mad-hatter

        I disagree. That large rink size is definitely more suited to speedy players who can cut through zones easily and lead transitions. Slower players may find themselves with more room before they have to make a decision with the large space, but they also have to be that much more careful not to cause a turnover or blow a tire or else they’ll constantly be fighting off odd man rushes and breakaways.

        • Accipiter

          Could be why most teams are selecting players that are fast.

          • mad-hatter

            Yeah, and also why Yandle off the team still bugs me but trying to stay positive because Kaner should have a blast with all that room.

        • mad-hatter

          Not to mention a quick player can close off large distances better than a slower player.

  • cliffkoroll

    Can’t wait to see Hamhuis shut down Kaner.

    • Accipiter

      Barring injury, I doubt Hamhuis will see a regular shift.

      • 10thMountainFire

        /Should’veTakenSeabs’d

        • steeg of their own

          Amen.

          • 10thMountainFire

            In Hossa’s name, we pray.

        • justforkicks

          but hamhuis has got this!

          • 10thMountainFire

            If he sees the ice, the ice is what he’ll be seeing as Kaner skates by him…

  • Z-man19

    The schedule for the Hawks will not be all that kind during the weeks before and after the Oly break. On Jan 26th, they will play their last home game for over a month. Then they embark on a 6 road trip to Calgary, Van (back to back), SJ, LA, Mallard, and Yotes on Feb 7th. After the Oly break, they go to NYR and then play Pitt at Soldiers Field and finally on March 4th, take the UC ice again against the Avs.

    So not only are a lot of our guys going to the Oly, they will have already been on the road 2 weeks before it starts. This seems really lovely

    • mad-hatter

      March in general is also going to be difficult with 15 games in 30 days. The last stretch of the season could be rough so everyone find your spots on the ledge accordingly.

      • Z-man19

        I’ve got mine all picked out. Great backdrop view while I watch everyone else take the leap

        • steeg of their own

          I will copy-paste this comment at some point in late March when you aren’t quite so blase.

          • Z-man19

            I may lose my shit if/when they get ousted from the playoffs, until then I’ll keep my angst in check

        • Accipiter

          Look for me. I will be the one without pants, standing, with a double scotch nowhere near the ledge.

          • Z-man19

            I’ll wave if I’m not too busy encouraging folks to take the leap

          • Fleshrifle

            Really..nowhere near the ledge?!? I thought you were capable of dangling over the edge with no pants

          • Accipiter

            It’s cold, OKAY !!!

        • mad-hatter

          As long as my cooler is fully stocked then I will sit anywhere. Except near the woods, because it smells there.

          • Z-man19

            you can sit by me, assuming your cooler is full and I get that hat you allegedly sent me

          • mad-hatter

            Those hats were sent just like those gumballs.

          • Z-man19

            ;(

      • ballyb11

        Bet you all wish you had my front row seat.

  • steeg of their own

    I don’t like the new site tagline. “Giving a fuck when it ain’t our turn to give a fuck” sounds both oddly defensive and oddly unrelated to Hawks team shenanigans.

    • mad-hatter

      I have a feeling it’s McClure in charge of those things, but anyway it’s a quote from The Wire so yeah, not really related.

      • Paul the Fossil

        “I knew it was your first time, wanted it to be special.” My favorite Wire line, although it requires too much background explanation to be deployed as a tagline.

    • 10thMountainFire

      You know the Hawks are awesome when we start complaining about TCI taglines.

      I like our guys.

  • Z-man19

    So since the Khabi question has been answered, are they going to bring up anyone from Vegas? They can’t bank any cap space, so why not bring up someone…cough Pirri, cough, cough Morin, cough……

    • mad-hatter

      Last I checked Pirri’s day-to-day with an LBI :(

      • Z-man19

        I don’t care who it is, bring up an option, that way I can at least fantasize that Q might sit Bollig

        • mad-hatter

          Maybe it could be Nordstrom then, since Q liked him from the beginning. Although Smith is more likely to be up in the press box instead.

          I really don’t know what it’s going to have to take for Bollig to be a healthy scratch.

          • justforkicks

            suspension or broken limbs. nothing less

          • mad-hatter

            Unfortunately this is probably true.

        • 10thMountainFire

          I have dreams, too. Once I imagined I could be an astronaut.

      • 10thMountainFire

        He’s year to year with a Q.

        • mad-hatter

          I’d laugh if it didn’t hurt so much :(

          • 10thMountainFire

            It’s so painful.

        • Paul the Fossil

          Okay I don’t hate Pirri’s demotion that much but that gets an upboat. Best spit-take I’ve enjoyed in a while.

  • http://www.our-founding.com/ Toews still makes funny faces!

    Having done (4) 5,500 mile each way (5-6 time zones), round trips in the past 13 months, I will say, if after 4 days somebody is bitching they have “not recovered” from that trip I will call BS. The first day, MAYBE two sucks but after that, you can adequately reset your schedules to the new time zone. They are professional, they will have adequate time to readjust, travel I would not be concerned about, unless you a Patrick Roy and Fuck Roy!

    • mad-hatter

      DEM HOCKEY PLAYERS AINT TUFF ENUFF LIKE TOEW MAKES FACES MY FRENTZ

      • http://www.our-founding.com/ Toews still makes funny faces!

        K ass of the smart variety.

        • mad-hatter

          Just trying to keep up with the status quo.

          • http://www.our-founding.com/ Toews still makes funny faces!

            Just saying, that amount of travel is not such a big deal. If I can do it from Coach with multiple layovers to the far reaches and 1-2 days later have allot riding on the line, I am saying pro athletes are going to be okay with this travel after 3-5 days.

          • mad-hatter

            Depends on the person. I suck at recovering from jet lag, and it usually takes me a couple days to get reset. Some players may be better at bouncing back than others, so let’s hope those guys happen to be Hawks.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            You amaze us all.

          • http://www.our-founding.com/ Toews still makes funny faces!

            sigh

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Indeedy. Sighs all round.

          • http://www.our-founding.com/ Toews still makes funny faces!

            not sure of the sarcasm on this one

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            That’s what I’m best at. Well, that and drinkin lemonade. I do both bettern average.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I drink lemonade better than you.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Huh. Well, if you do, you best not do it with yer back turned to me.

          • birdhead

            man you guys get silly when the Hawks get two days off in a row.

          • 1benmenno

            I made biscuits. Didn’t use butter; used the bacon drippings I store in the fridge for shortening.

          • birdhead

            That sounds delicious. My flatmate’s vegetarian, I’m awfully jealous of anyone who gets to use bacon dripping!

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            It’s always embarrassing getting caught being 10 years old. At least I wasn’t passing notes.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            As a rule I don’t like tootin my own horn, but that was the funniest thing I’ve ever posted.

          • 10thMountainFire

            For the record, I don’t downboat… but the person who downboated you apparently disagrees and believes that you have posted funnier things.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Looks like I’m going to be fighting. I’ve never been in a fight … strange that lemonade and disagreement on a “turned back” comment should prompt my first one.

          • 10thMountainFire

            You’re a Canadian hero!

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Aww, shucks. I can’t fight now.

          • 10thMountainFire

            …because you’re Canadian. You’re too polite.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Sorry. That’s my fault.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I apologize for inspiring you to apologize.

          • 1benmenno

            Don’t underestimate not chico. Just estimate him

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            There’s only one man gets estimated around here, benmen, and that’s you, and it was exactly.

          • 10thMountainFire

            TSMFF… I have no sympathy for them making that flight, either.

          • Accipiter

            There are smart asses around here ?

          • http://www.our-founding.com/ Toews still makes funny faces!

            Nobody asked for your input on the matter

          • Accipiter

            Good thing I gave no input.

          • CozBullsFan

            I thought that was a given.

          • mad-hatter

            Only if you say something about hockey.

    • 10thMountainFire

      Upboated for the angsty whiner walking around down-boating the Hall of Famers today (you and CNS).

      • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

        I downboated you only because there’s nothing more beautiful than balance.

        • 10thMountainFire

          I upboated you… to balance.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            You done gone and rectified.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Justified is back tonight.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Just passed the watching of the first Season on netflix. Was jist fine, and I’m fixin to watch myself another.

          • 10thMountainFire

            They get better each season. Justified is awesome.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            I’ll watch Oliphant in anything now. Deadwood was an alltime favourite from a while back. I know actors don’t always translate from one series to another, but there were a bunch from that one that’ll I’ll always lend my time to.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I’ve never seen Deadwood but I’ve heard incredible things. Is it on Netflix?

          • 1benmenno

            You wouldn’t like it. They use foul language.

          • 10thMountainFire
          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Not the Canadian, nope. And it’s HBO, so probably not. Well worth your time. Stupid good.

          • 10thMountainFire

            On my list now.

          • Accipiter

            Have you seen ‘Sherlock’ (British version, tv show) ?
            I just found it and it’s worth giving a chance.

          • 10thMountainFire

            No. Is it new or an archived show?

          • Accipiter

            New to me. They already have 2 seasons with 3 episodes in each season that are an hour and a half long. The 3rd season is airing now, 3rd episode this Sunday.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I’m going to see if it’s on iTunes…

  • CozBullsFan

    Evening everyone! I saw the Khabi news today when I was out working. First thing that came to mind was “Praise Hossa.” Then I wondered how this happened. My best guess? The Hawks approached Khabi and asked him if he had any lingering injuries they could take care of for him. Turns out he had a bad rotator cuff. Problem solved.

    • Z-man19

      Coz

      • CozBullsFan

        Z.

        • 1benmenno

          Hola

          • 10thMountainFire

            You speak American in here!

          • CozBullsFan

            I do what I want!

          • 10thMountainFire

            Know what’s funny? I tried to reply to you and ended up calling myself a Communist.

          • CozBullsFan

            LOL! It’s the terrorists of course.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Stalin, Mao, and Osama in cahoots.

          • CozBullsFan

            You keep good company as a communist.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Jim Cornelison killed Osama Bin Laden.

          • CozBullsFan

            Only a true American hero can sing the anthem and kill Osama like he did.

          • 10thMountainFire
          • VanDorp’sMullet

            All it took was one emphatic point to the flag.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Pinko bastards.

          • 1benmenno

            XMFd

          • 10thMountainFire

            I am a fool.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Communist.

          • 1benmenno

            Soy alergica “murican.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Well, her parents are Indian…

          • 1benmenno

            Ha! So, yeah, she’s an A-rab.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Eff you, Cheesecake Factory!

          • 1benmenno

            And Jonah Hill. And Zach Braff, right in the face!

          • 10thMountainFire

            Who hates Jonah Hill?

          • 1benmenno

            Exactly.

          • CozBullsFan

            Buenas noches Ben.

          • 1benmenno

            Nachos didn’t make the team, Coz.

          • CozBullsFan

            It’s too bad he didn’t. He had a chance, but Team Canada brass had a tough decision.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I hear Sochi Nachos are the best nachos.

          • mad-hatter

            False. Europeans don’t understand Mexican food at all and their nachos are terrible. They just put shredded cheddar cheese over fake doritos. And their idea of an enchilada is putting marinara sauce with meat in a tortilla. I’m still not recovered.

          • 10thMountainFire

            So Seabs actually turned down playing and not the other way around?

          • mad-hatter

            Sacrifices must be made in the name of melted cheese. Especially over Russia.

          • 10thMountainFire

            These are the things we do as champions.

          • Accipiter

            Putin Mexican food to shame.

          • mad-hatter

            God dammit.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I’ll upboat that. Why not?

          • Michael Scott

            I had some pretty good Mexican food in Lithuania.

          • mad-hatter

            That’s an interesting place. Let me say that Germany had no clue what they were doing.

          • Michael Scott

            Now to be fair, this was after five or six days of potato based foods, so it may have tasted better than it actually was.
            Bit it was fiiiiind.

          • CozBullsFan

            European Mexican food is a really bad version of Tex Mex. Which isn’t even close to Mexican food. Tex Mex is disgusting.

          • mad-hatter

            European Mexican food is like broke college student food.

          • CozBullsFan

            pretty much

          • VanDorp’sMullet

            Weirdly, the worst Mexican food I’ve ever had was in Spain. You’d figure they might know a thing or two about their former colony.

          • CozBullsFan

            What food did you eat?

          • VanDorp’sMullet

            “Enchiladas.” It was ground beef in a ceramic bowl that was covered by a hard tortilla, a little cheese (of unknown variety) and ketchup. No flavoring in the meat. Oh and to repeat. Ketchup. I don’t think they were even trying.

          • CozBullsFan

            Haha! You must have been in some back water establishment. That’s hillbilly grade Mexican food.

          • VanDorp’sMullet

            Not even dude. It was a Mexican restaurant in one of Sevilla’s most popular restaurant streets. I think a Spaniard friend of mine even recommended it. It was a hilariously bad and misinformed place though. I don’t remember what my buddy ordered but it was also very, very, very loosely “Mexican” food. I did have an awesome churro from a street vendor later that night as I staggered drunkenly home.

          • VanDorp’sMullet

            I will say that the “dos besos” from the lovely Spanish ladies all day long more than made up for the terrible Mexican food.

          • CozBullsFan

            I love Spanish women. A girl I know from Coz is living in Madrid. She has some seriously good looking friends. That said, I’d still take a Mexican women over a Spanish one.

          • CozBullsFan

            Can’t go wrong with churros. I’m surprised that they get mess up Mexican food so badly. Funny thing is, Spaniards look down on Mexicans like they are dirt. Mexican food > Spanish food.

          • mad-hatter

            In my experience Spaniards in general don’t particularly like Mexico or the other Latin American countries (who also don’t like each other).

          • birdhead

            that is 100% how I make nachos, fwiw. (okay and a meat/bean sauce.)

    • http://www.our-founding.com/ Toews still makes funny faces!

      Any injuries they could take care of, because you ain’t playing for us again!

      • CozBullsFan

        Yeah, he knew that.They did him a favor with the surgery. He still gets his money and a lingering injury fixed to boot.

    • 10thMountainFire

      Coz.

      • CozBullsFan

        XMF

  • Accipiter

    Any of youse see Schenn take a skate to the abdomen ?
    Didn’t seem too bad, but pretty scary.

    • CozBullsFan

      I missed it. I was watching the ISU/Baylor game. Got a link?

      • Accipiter

        I just saw it in the pregame highlights.

      • mad-hatter

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ubzzndUEB-s
        Considering it’s a skate to the stomach it’s really not that bad. But still, careful if you get queasy about these things.

        • CozBullsFan

          Yikes. Could have been a lot worse. He got lucky there.

    • VanDorp’sMullet

      He just scored the game winner for the Flyers.

    • Country_Bumpkin

      Not as bad as taking an arrow to the knee.
      I’ll show myself out.

  • Fleshrifle

    Now I can do one of my favorite exercises in international hockey, remembering how bad ass Czechoslovakia was in hockey when it was still united as a country. So,using the best of the Czechs and the Slovaks here’s what I think the Czechoslovakian team would look like today headed to the Olympics (mainly NHLers because I don’t follow the KHL):

    Forwards: God, Marian Gaborik, Michal Handzus, Marcel Hossa, P. Elias, M. Frolik, M. Hanzal, A.Hemsky, J. Jagr, D. Krejci, M. Michalek, P. Nedved, T. Plekanec, V. Sobotka

    Defensemen: Zdeno Chara, Andrej Meszaros Andrej Sekera, Lubomir Visnovsky, T. Kaberle, Z. Michalek, M. Rozsival, M.Zidlicky

    Goaltenders: Peter Budaj, Jaroslav Halak, O.Pavelec

    • birdhead

      Still not exactly young, huh.

      • Paul the Fossil

        Ya, that lineup does look as if they have a pipeline problem over there.

        • Fleshrifle

          Lots of young guys in the KHL. But yeah, not a young team. swedes aren’t much younger.

  • Jenbees27

    Are we at the point where we can now start a KaneMakesFunnyFaces to go with TMFF?

  • Deborah Mosca
  • B Squared

    Biggest difference between Taylor Hall and Sharp is that Sharp won’t have any Cossack peasants trying to throw a saddle on his back when he’s walking around Sochi.

  • HossasPierogi

    Nice snub of Slovakia in your article – a team that came within an eyelash of taking down Canada in 2010. A definite medal contender in 2014.