3-11-2010

OU Senior Derrick Nelson talks to RDOS, The Lions take free agency by storm!!!

Why ESPN won’t cover the Big Ben mess lick Mike Vick or Kobe, Hockeytown 1995-2010, Real Deal on Society: Mail in Rebates

Neal and Kyle are Arguing Again

*Photo Credit Township Member O’Looney’s

How Should Teams Be Picked in the RDOS/RIH Floor Hockey Game

Soft-serve athlete of the week

By Kyle Bauer

 

I could soooooo easily pick on Brett Favre. Ohhhhh I could! But nope. It’s going to already be a repeat offender.

 

JIMMY HOWARD!!!

 Jimmy Howard wins it again for last nights performance and his contributions to the latest trend of the Red Wings blowing late leads. Sure Osgood was in when the Red Wings blew a late two-goal lead against the Caps but in all other instances it has been Howard. Of course the Red Wings defense could be blamed. Last night Shane Doan’s game winning goal was spurred by a brutal Darren Helm give away.

Notice that Jimmy was way out of position on the goal though? When you’re a top NHL goalie, you need to make a big save late in games. Howard plays strong through the first two periods but as of late, in the third period, when the Wings need it most, he lacks the ability to make the big save.

I plan on elaborating on this during the show tomorrow.

Jimmy Howard, you are soft-serve!

The Real Deal on Sports soft-serve player of the week.

By Kyle Bauer

A very long time ago there existed a show entitled “Totally Raw Sports” this program featured a few different cast members. Among them was Neal Ruhl and an extremely young and mistake prone Kyle Bauer. The Real Deal on Sports rose from the ashes of Totally Raw Sports. Neal had a bit towards the end of every program that he called “Soft Serve of the Week” where he would dub a player and their performance in a moment that matter most, “soft”.

Todays soft-serve athlete of the week

Jimmy Howard

A lot of people are stunned by this week’s pick, well I’m assuming they will be. It would simply be too easy to pick Nate Keading for missing three field-goals in a row when he is one of the most accurate kickers in NFL history, or LT (already touched on that) or for that matter anyone from the Chargers.

I choose Howard for his performance in the Sunday afternoon epic that I am sure few people watched, when the Blackhawks beat the Red Wings in shootout 4 to 3. The keyword is shootout. JHo made a solid 26 saves in leading up to the shootout. Ed Olyczk proclaimed that the game had taken on a playoff atmosphere late in regulation and I will actually agree with him. The players seemed to had elevated their game to a playoff intensity through the final 10 minutes of the game and overtime.

And there stood Jimmy Howard.

I will cut him some slack for playing back to back shootouts as the afternoon before, the Wings were busy being robbed in Dallas. Still, he lost back to back shootouts. He lost a shootout to Antti Niemi. True he had to go up against Kane, Toews, Hossa and Sharp but it remains, he watched Datsyuk and Bertuzzi score incredible goals on the other end, only to have Patrick Sharp end the game in cold blood.

Everyone’s play had become lifted and it was just one of those games that took on a new life yet Howard couldnt rise to the challenge. Then again I could blame Zetterberg for hitting the post and Cleary for lofting the puck into Neimis chest, in the shootout. But no, this one is on Jho.

Jimmy Howard, you are soft-serve.

The Ugly Christmas Sweater has jumped the shark.

By Kyle Bauer

How do I know this? 

Because last Thursday, the Joe Louis Arena had a “ugly sweater” night to draw people in to see the Grand Rapids Griffins play the Tampa Bay Lightning in what may or may not have been an exhibition game. I’m still not clear. Keep hearing about how it was Jimmy Howard’s first (and likely last) career shutout, so I suppose it did count.

I digress.

If the NHL is getting in on it, chances are it is beyond played out. If the Bauer family’s theme for our Christmas party is going to be “ugly sweaters”, it died three years ago. Yes, my family is having an ugly sweater party for Christmas. Yes, my girlfriend will be my designated driver.

I love and respect Bill Cosby. The tradition of wearing ugly sweaters, started a few years ago when hipsters wanted to draw attention to themselves by not necessarily wearing “ugly” sweaters but what they seen as “vintage” sweaters akin to what you would see on the Cosby Show circa 1986. The ideal of the vintage sweater is similar to that of the ugly sweater because they are the same thing. It is just two different demographics looking at thrift store shopping in two entirely different lights.

With the surge in ugly sweater parties by “mainstreamers” or ” ‘streamers” there has been a backlash against the sweater culture by many hipsters. While I do not consider myself a hipster (though I have admitted traits), I am leading this backlash.

If I wear a VINTAGE sweater, it will either be to honor the Coz or because well….maybe I actually like the damn sweaters.

No law when it comes to me.

New blog on the tradition of sports and Thanksgiving

By Kyle Bauer

A three day man fest! Or rather fest for men! Pt. 1 of 3

I typed in "Red Wings Night before Thanksgiving" into Google Image and
I got this....it works. Wonder who Dave Coulier spends
Thanksgiving with?

 

and now you find yourself in 2002…

Yzerman Mural 2

Last night, Steve Yzerman, Luc Robitaille and Brett Hull were inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. While around town, we have only heard about Yzermans induction, remember all three played on one incredible hockey team. I understand the fawning of Yzerman in the light of this moment. Yzerman rejuvenated a franchise with his two hands and a bionic knee.

But it was that 2001-02 season, where four inductees in the past two classes, were grouped together and he was the one who stood out. His riveting performance on one leg, in visible pain, carrying the Wings back from an imminent first round upset at the hands of Vancouver. He finished the playoffs with 23 points in 21 games. Yzerman was largely ineffective after the second round series against St.Louis, but he carried the weight of nine other Hall of Famers through the first two rounds.

Yes, nine other Hall of Famers; Larionov, Hull, Robitaille, Shanahan, Lidstrom, Hasek, Chelios, Fedorov and likely Datsyuk, so lets say ten. Yet, this seems to be the forgotten team. I suppose it was for lack of longevity. Really the 2008 Cup winning team has already seemed to suffer a fade in luster and will likely suffer the same relative obscurity.

Nineteen-Ninety-Seven was the first Stanley Cup in 42 years, they won back to back, there was emotion and adversity with the Fedorov hold-out and Konstinov accident. All seems to point towards the back to back cups as being the forever titles. But the bottom line is an assembly of such supreme talent is rare. We didn’t see such an assembly in any other team than 2002. The 01-02 Red Wings would smoke the back to back cup teams, trust me, I know, I have played out this match-up on NHL 2K9 several times.

I am just asking talent to be appreciated. That team finished the regular season 51-17-10, a dominating total of 116 points. But they did not make it boring. Of course there was the aforementioned hiccup against Vancouver in the first round. Detroit fell behind in the series 0-2 and it took a freak center ice goal from Lidstrom (or rather the ineptitude of Dan Cloutier) for Detroit to save themselves.

They played back to back hard fought series against St. Louis and Colorado, both fine teams that season. The series against the Blues seen Chris Pronger injure himself, trying to take out the wounded Yzerman, which is still one of my all-time favorite hockey moments.

The first six games of the 2002 Western Conference was the best display of playoff hockey I had ever seen. The two teams went toe to toe, trading what looked like knock out blow after knock out blow. It wasn’t until a surprise Yzerman goal in game six, paired with another oddly effective Darren McCarty performance, that got the Wings game six in Colorado while facing elimination. Game 7 ended the Avalanche run as a contender and Patrick Roy’s career. Completing the circle of the Red Wings-Avalanche rivalry, that for a time, was the best in sports.

Then how about in the Stanley Cup finals? So many people pass that series off as forgettable, but if you don’t remember some key moments of that series, then you simply weren’t paying attention in the first place.

Game 3 of that series was simply put, one of the best Stanley Cup finals games ever. It sea-sawed back and forth. The Wings had to score with a minute left in the third, on a controversial power play to send it into overtime. Fallowing a couple hit posts and tremendous saves from Irbe and Hasek it eventually went into a sixth period. Larionov got a great break on a pick set by Dandendault and floated a backhand up over Irbe to end it. This game seems lost in time. Despite had the Wings lost, they would had been down 2 to 1, with two more games to play in Carolina. It was a beautiful, clutch goal, in a gut wrenchingly important game, yet it seems overshadowed by Kris Drapper scoring in early overtime of game two in the ‘98 finals.

Who got the Conn Smythe? It somehow was not Yzerman who lead the team in points on one leg. It somehow wasn’t Hull who lead the team in goals. It somehow wasn’t Hasek who set a record for playoff shut outs with seven. It was Lidstrom who lead the team in ice time, plus-minus, while adding 16 points and only taking one penalty. This was a largely debatable decision rooted in the depth of this team.

So my plea is to take this time and remember not just Yzerman, but that entire 2001-2002 team. Every player, from Sean Avery and Jiri Slegr to Sergie Fedorov and Uwe Krupp. They were an interesting roster, just aside from the all the Hall of Fame talent.

It was for all intents and purposes, a rented team. There was a core from ‘98 there but the big guns were brought in to make sure the deed would be done. Maybe that is why this team has been swept under the bed. This is a “blue collar town” and that was a “white collar team”. The Red Wings were doing their best Yankees impersonation that season, and like for the Yankees this season, it worked then.

As I was impressed with this seasons Yankees team, I will forever be impressed with the 01-02 Red Wings and will hold them in high reverie. Three players from one Hall of Fame class playing on the same team, was a true privilege to watch. Just hope you knew what you were watching.