Tonight when all the attention was focused on the suspension of Ovie and how the Capitals were going to get rolled by the Bruins the Caps stood tall. They didn't roll over and die. They stood toe-to-toe with the Bruins and thanks to a huge performance by Mathieu Perreault (a favorite of AOTI) the Caps sent the Bruins out of town with a loss. A side story to tonight's game was Tim Thomas and how he skipped visiting the White House. Whatever, I don't want to get into that because I don't like politics mixed into my sports. Something several of tonight's broadcasters didn't seem to understand. The Caps showed some heart tonight and so did these members of the CSN crew:
Third Star (1 pt):
Smokin Al Koken. This man interviewed Matty P at the start of the game. He interviewed him after the second period. He interviewed him after the game. He also interviewed Denis Widemen. Notice anything. Yeah that is all people who scored goals. Big time points for that one. Koken was also there to offer Matty a towel when he got a shaving cream pie to the face during the post game, via Ovie. Really enjoyed each of his interviews tonight and thought he asked good questions that the players could answer. Nice work from Smokin tonight.
Second Star (2 pts):
Jill Sorenson. She did appear much tonight. In fact she only had a brief spot during the pregame. But its quality, not quantity that matters here at AOTI. Jill had a interview with Hunter before the game and also talked about how the team would need to step up without Ovie and Backstrom. Jill seemed to think that Matty P, getting an opportunity to play on the top line, might be the guy to step up. Well guess what...she was right. Just about as right as it is possible to be. I’m not sure Jill thought that Matty would net three goals tonight but she believed in him and comes off looking like a genius after this game. When you make bold predictions that come true you earn some respect (and points) from us!
First Star (3 pts):
Julie Donaldson. Julie got first intermission and postgame duty tonight. First intermission started a little rough when the sound cut out, but she didn’t miss a beat. Made sure to talk about the fisticuffs in the Rangers/Jets highlights. Good ol’ Julie, always making sure she shows us the fun stuff. Also showed highlights from an uneventful Sabres/Devils game. Made no mistakes and signed off with a smile. Also, bonus points for not mentioning that the Caps were missing people, since that had been done to death already. Opened her postgame spot with, “Hey, who needs Ovie?” Indeed. We respect that. Certainly a nice change from doom-and-gloom “we’re-toast-without-him” kind of talk.
Other Participants (0 pts):
Alan May: Said guys needed to step up. Guys stepped up (Matty).
Joe B: Game intro was about "Malkin-Mania". Yuck.
Locker: Telestrating and was all about triangles tonight.
Rob Carlin: Meh pregame. Good postgame. Feeding off those good team vibes as always.
Chick: Nothing terrible about his performance tonight. Had a nice red tie on.
Last Star (-1 pt):
It’s no surprise that this spot goes to Chuck Gormley. When he shows his face during a CSN broadcast it is almost a given that he will be in the last spot. Two appearances ago he found himself in last but didn’t lose a point. This is because we at AOTI felt he should decent improvement and an effort to better his craft. However, his last time out he was back to his old ways and seemed to have regressed. Tonight confirms that Chuck has forgotten everything he seemed to learn. He was flat, uninteresting, and obviously reading off a teleprompter. Its really mind boggling that CSN keeps sending Chuck back out there. His job is to drum up interest for his blog stories. There are two ways to accomplish this: have controversial or thought provoking topics or be a engaging and interesting dude. Chuck consistently does neither. His story tonight, Ovie’s suspension. Who didn’t see that coming? That story has been all over the news and covered to death. Chuck’s fatal flaw tonight was choosing to compare himself to Alan May. He opened his spot by letting us know that Alan May and Chuck Gormley are all about the old school hockey hits. Then he lets us know that he disagrees with May on this particular topic. This brings up serious complications. First, it implies that Chuck Gormley has seen hockey before he got his blogging job and knows about the “old school” NHL. Don’t buy it. Second, it makes me compare Alan May and Chuck and makes me realize how awful Chuck really is. Also have some courage to outline your views Chuck. Saying “I disagree with...” isn’t telling us anything. Take a stand and that’ll get your stories some views and inspire debate. Finally, up until now I’m not sure May even knew who Gormley was but Chuck may have just woken a sleeping giant. If they get into a war of words it’ll be a massacre, and that’s something that everybody can enjoy. Just don’t kill him Alan, we need him here at AOTI.
As mentioned at the top, Matty is something of hero/fan favorite here at AOTI. That said, here is a profession of that love:
GOLD STAR (for awesomeness):
Mathieu Fucking Perrault. So, coming into tonight’s game, the talk was all about the fact that the Caps are now playing without their two best players and two-thirds of their top line, as Nick Backstrom is out with a concussion and Ovechkin is serving a suspension. The million-dollar question from every media/blog/anyone-with-a-computer source out there was “Who’s going to step up?” Well, Matty P answered the bell in a big way tonight; he was a force almost every time he was out on the ice en route to his first career hat trick. The goals themselves were the result of hard work; the first was a beautiful passing play, the second was an unassisted wrister that started with a beautiful pickpocket, and the third came as a result of Matty going to the net and scoring on a rebound. Admittedly I’ve always been a shameless Matty P fan, but after watching his effort and energy tonight, coupled with the fact that the smile on his face after he scored that third goal was so goddamn big that there’s no possible way one could NOT be happy for him, he’s pretty much cemented himself as my fan-favorite. (Murshawursha)
Thanks for reading! Next game comes next Tuesday. Enjoy the All Star break and see you then!