Friday, February 02, 2007

Over in San Jose...

There's an interesting situation going on right now in San Jose that's ended with some nasty stares being exchanged between Eric Lindros of the Dallas Stars and Doug Murray of the San Jose Sharks.

It all started a few minutes ago, as Murray was skating deep in his own end along the right wing boards looking to throw the puck behind the net to clear the zone. Coming hard on the forecheck was Lindros, who cut off Murray right before the goal line with a leg on leg hit that sent both players spinning. While getting pinwheeled, Murray only had one hand on his stick, and as he spun, the shaft of his stick caught Lindros on the side of the head sending him to the ice.

After getting back up, Lindros called out Murray, skating over to him and delivering a forceful cross-check. Murray, not wanting to put up with it, turned, dropped his gloves and faced Lindros.

Which is where Chris Barch came in, dropped his gloves, and took on Murray himself.

After the fight ended with Murray wrestling Barch to the ice, here's how it shook out:

Murray: 2 minutes for high sticking, 5 minutes for fighting.
Lindros: 2 minutes for cross-checking.
Barch: 2 minutes for instigating, 5 minutes for fighting and a 10-minute misconduct.

With Lindros in the box, you could hear one San Jose fan call him out and ask if he couldn't fight his own battles. But as I'm finding out in Ross Bernstein's book, The Code, things played out here pretty much as they should have. And the presence of the instigator penalty might very well have prevented justice from being fully served.

From the way I see it, Wilson is a young kid who needs to control his stick no matter what. The Sharks broadcast team described his high stick as unintentional, but after looking at it a few times, it seemed borderline to me.

In any case, a young player who clips another player in the head with a high stick has got to pay a price -- doubly so if the victim is Lindros, a veteran player with a history of concussions. Once Lindros delivered the cross-check, that message was sent. But when Murray dropped the gloves, it was time for Barch to step in and protect one of his team's top performers.

In other words, it was Barch's job to stand up for Lindros, as crazy as that might sound to those of us who remember what kind of player he was early on in his career.

Bottom line: I don't think this is over. The game is tight right now, so we might not see retaliation from Dallas right away, but sometime, somewhere the Dallas Stars will exact their revenge on him.

In other words, Murray transgressed against the code, and the Sharks wound up with a power play. Is that fair? I'm sure Dallas doesn't think so.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Fiber Cut Has Me Down!

That's the word from Hostmatters. There's no estimate as to when Off Wing will be back up.

I'm going to bed soon. If you're on the East Coast, you should too.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Server Problem -- I'm out of space!

My bad. I need to clear some stuff off of my server. Should be back up pretty soon.

Thanks for your patience.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Back Down Again...

Here's the explanation from Hostmatters:
[NAC] Network issues
The two servers at NAC are inaccessible at this moment. NAC engineers indicate the problem is network-wide there, and they are working to address it. We, like anyone else with servers there, are awaitig updates from them.
For those of you scoring at home, or if you're alone, this makes five outages in the last week. Grrr.

UPDATE: Back up again as of now. See you back at the mothership.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Back Up Again

I don't know what to say. The last outage was pretty short, but annoying. Just remember if you can't access Off Wing, come here.

The Many Faces Of Alex Ovechkin

The Washington Caps unveiled Alex Ovechkin yesterday, but I wouldn't be surprised if you were hard pressed to figure out just which Alex Ovechkin came to the District yesterday if you read some of the different media accounts.

The first one I tripped over was a piece by Tim Wharnsby of the Globe and Mail, and it confirmed some of the preconceptions I had about the Russian wunderkind:
The Sidney Crosby hysteria that has gripped the National Hockey League and its fans this summer has allowed Russian hotshot Alexander Ovechkin to fly under the radar.

That suits the high-flying Ovechkin, drafted first overall by the Washington Capitals in 2004.

"He's a Canadian, he should get more attention," Ovechkin said yesterday from Washington. He is slated to hold his first news conference for the Washington media today.

"If the National Hockey League was in Russia, I would be getting the attention," Ovechkin added. "I don't mind. It takes the spotlight away from me and maybe I will have less pressure to produce.

"Let's wait and see [who will receive more attention] at the end of the season."

As vanilla as the 18-year-old Crosby can be when discussing his expectations and NHL future, Ovechkin can be colourful and brash.
This seemed to make sense. After all, when Ovechkin and his teammates on Russia's national junior team eliminated Team USA at last Winter's World Junior Championships, they seemed pretty happy to torment the Americans in the game's final moments. Apparently, somebody had thought to show the Russian kids Miracle during their stay in the States, and they didn't take kindly to it.

A shocker, I know. Sort of like showing the U.S. Navy a restored version of Tora, Tora, Tora during a port call to Yokohama.

But then I read this account by Dave Fay of the Washington Times. For those of you who don't know him, Fay has been covering the Caps for as long as I can remember, and I've lived here 20 years:
He was nervous, which came as no surprise. And he had some difficulty with the language, also not a shock. But more than anything, Alexander Ovechkin wanted to know when he could get out on the ice.

The 19-year-old Russian wunderkind, newly enriched by the Washington Capitals, had no trouble at an MCI Center press conference yesterday, answering everything thrown his way and easily shifting between his own answers or utilizing a young interpreter.

Was he going out to buy the expensive sports car he had dreamed of now that he had some money?

"Right now I want to buy a house, because a car is a car but a house is a house," he said. "Maybe next season I buy a car."


"If you play hockey, I want to win," he quickly answered, chopping off his interpreter, when asked if he realized the difficulties immediately ahead. "Always, sportsmen want to win game. We're a young team and not good, not as mature ..." Here he struggled with English words until his aide finished the thought for him, "but our passion will prevail as to win."
Nervous? And using an interpreter? Those would seem to be important details that you'd want to include in a story.

So what's the truth? Luckily, the Caps provided audio from yesterday's press conference so you can decide for yourself.

POSTSCRIPT: Here's a tidbit from the Washington Post coverage of the press conference that I thought was pertinent:
Capitals majority owner Ted Leonsis said he expects the Capitals' season ticket base to hover around 8,500 this season, down more than 3,300 from the team's peak of about 11,800 during the 2001-02 season, Jaromir Jagr's first with the Capitals. Leonsis also said the team sold about 500 new season ticket plans last month, the best August in the six years he has owned the team.
Hmmm. Something to think about. More later.

Down Again

Yet another outage, started just a few minutes ago. After four days, I'm just getting tired of this. Look for posts here for the duration.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Yet Another DDOS Attack

Yep, this is number four in just three days. Until things get resolved, I'll be blogging here. Stay tuned for new content.

UPDATE: We're back up again, but who knows for how long. In any case, stop by Off Wing for new content.