Tuesday, February 28, 2006

There Were Reasons Not to Panic?

So yeah, that whole not panicking about Michigan hockey thing? Forget I said that. If panicking is good enough for Red, it's good enough for me. Taking Noah Ruden out of the starting lineup in favor of Bill Sauer--who has about as much confidence between the pipes as my brother has in Dubya--prior to the last weekend of the regular season just reeks of panic. We now head into the postseason in the unenviable position of having absolutely no freaking idea who our starting goalie is. That's never a good thing.

It's probably a good thing that I opted for a post-Valentine's Day trip with the chica rather than trekking to Big Rapids (though I really did want to hit up the Tractor Supply Store, I'm not gonna lie) and then buying a ticket to watch that crap at Yost. I'm not sure what my reaction would've been had I seen that, but with the players' families sitting right in front of me, it's probably best I wasn't there.

Not too much good you can say about a team when they blow a 3 goal lead for the second time since 1988 second time since last April. I'm not going to skewer anyone for their play, because I didn't see the games, nor was I able to listen to them. What I've heard though? Same ole, same ole. Soft goals, bad defense, odd-man rushes up the wazoo.

Some posts on this weekend that I thought were very much worth reading from the Yost Post:

Alnike had one of the best posts I've seen on that board in recent memory, with his breakdown of a bunch of stats about this team and who needs to step up their game. The most telling stat:

In its last 12 games, in which Michigan is a pathetic 4-4-4, the team has either
had a lead, or been in a tie game in the 3rd period in all those games. By my
accounts, it pissed away 10 pts and only recovered 2 pts. vs tOSU when Caruso
let in the Turnbull beachball shot through his 5-hole.

-2 vs. MSU at JLA (5-3 lead, goalie, penalty kill)

-2 vs. tOSU at Yost (4-3 lead, goalies)

-1 vs. LSSU (2-2 tie, OT goal - Ruden)

-1 vs. UNO (3-3 tie, 3 goal comeback immediately thwarted)

-2 vs. UNO (4-2 2nd period lead, 1 goal lead in 3rd, Ruden)

-2 vs. FSU

I knew it was bad...didn't realize it was quite that bad.

Mike Spath also had a nice post of comments and observations. MHNet has an interesting theory as to why the team is struggling--one that the superstitious person in me whole-heartedly agrees with. After seeing what our basketball team has gone through the last two years, should we have really screwed with the hockey team's karma? 6 losses at Yost this year tells me everything I need to know about that one.

I'm teetering dangerously close to detaching the way I did with U of M football this year, accepting that it's going to be the worst year in recent memory and not getting worked up over the losses anymore. I think I may have been the only person not wearing red that was able to crack a smile after the Michigan/OSU game in football, and it's getting close to that point with this team. I miss freshman/sophomore year Al Montoya, Jed Ortmeyer, Mike Cammalleri, Andy Hilbert, and Mike Komisarek. And John Shouneyia.


Anonymous said...

The dancing tradition started in 1990.

The last time Michigan finished below 2nd in the CCHA and didn't make the NCAA tournament was 1989.


Packer487 said...

You and me both Colin...all I wanted in my 4 years as a student was a national championship in something (I'm talking rev sports here thank you...I love several of the non-revs but I'm not going to do a backflip over a field hockey title). Football crapped away their best shot, hockey got screwed out of theirs. 6 years running of having tickets and I'm still waiting.

To have been at U of M 5 years earlier...2 hockey titles and a football title. Maaan.

Jeremy: That's very interesting. I didn't know that! I think we might be on to something here. The Yost Gods are angry....

Anonymous said...

Interesting slams on JJ being a minus 4. Let's examine a couple facts, first goal was a turnover by Kolarik right inside blueline and a terrible shot and goal. Another I remember, from a faceoff UM plays a 5-5or man on man, JJ ties his man up and they score, what could he do? Then the overtime goal, just watch the replay, it was NOT a 2-1, JJ was right next to the guy at the blue line, should i say soft goal again? JJ wants to win so badly and is terribly frustrated by a lack of support, and guts. UM loses every battle down low and gets intimidated in other rinkks even to a degree at Yost. How many times I'v stood and watched JJ jump into the play to have the forwards not ee, or turn it over at the blue line, pretty frustrating. Someone said why was he leading the forcheck-because he can and no one else was going in, and besides he was first back. No one has seen a kid quite like JJ. When do you remember a kid with all that talent, skating, stickhandling, toughness. Leading the country in penalties, right up in scoring and plus/minus? Just doesn't happen. He's a stallion, you don't control him, you unleash him! At least he plays his heart out every shift every game. Goaltending is the reason this team is where it is, by far. Just no one will admit it. They are terrible. The 9-1 record, look who they played, maybe deceiving. the team has way too many guys that really do nothing. There is very little real talent there honestly.

Anonymous said...

Jack is a selfish, play hard at all cost, reckless, cheap shot artist. He will realize that it is a team game, where all 6 guys on the ice have to play together, not forecheck and then get caught on the backcheck. The overtime goal was his fault against FU, and its real simple- PLAY DEFENSE- LET THE FORWARD'S SCORE!

Anonymous said...

You're right Packer about getting to see a title as a student, it's awesome. I was fortunate enough to be a senior in 1996 (and a first year hockey fan), what a thrill the CCHA and NCAA championships were that year. It's what inspired me to start playing the game myself. 2003 was our best shot at a title in recent years.... (sigh). Buffalo still stings, even more than last year.

Packer487 said...

By far. Buffalo is the most down I have ever been after a sporting event. It trumped Super Bowl XXXII and the 1995 Stanley Cup Finals in my eyes.

I'm starting playing the game myself in a couple weeks. Never played before on ice. We'll see how that goes...

Packer487 said...

There's a bunch at the Cube in Ann Arbor (it's over on Scio Church off of Main...where the U-18s play). They have one--that I'm joining--called a Never Ever league, for people that have never played organized hockey before.
www.a2ice3.com is their website

Chris said...

The dancing tradition started way later than 1990. Jamie Nix was the first band director to dance. I believe it was in the mid to late 90's.

Anonymous said...

I was in the hockey band at UM, and I know it wasnt Jamie Nix that started the dancing thing. It was Clif Smith that started it. I think it was 1993 or 1994. In fact the first "dancer...sieve...dancer...sieve" chant started in Cincinnati at the 1995 Frozen Four final game vs. Colorado College.