Re: In Preparation for Tuesday Night
|November 22 2005, 4:27 PM |
In keeping with the "tale of the tape" . . .
The Peerless Prognosticator Brings You . . . "No Pity in the Steel City"
The Peerless Prognosticator is ON THE AIR!!! . . . and tonight, in the tradition of the “Thrilla in Manila,” it’s the “Shellin’ at Mellon” . . . “No Pity in the Steel City” . . . the bout everyone has been waiting for since the NHL draft order was announced . . . but let’s go rinkside for the introductions . . .
L-L-L-L-L-L-L-L-adieeeeeeees and gentlemen, welcome to Mellon Arena to a Gary Bettman, “Dumb as a Stump” promotion. This is the main event of the evening, so l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-l-let’s get rrrrrrready to RRRRRRRRRUM-BLLLLLLLE!!!!!
This is a 15-round bout, the three misconduct rule is waived, and this contest is sanctioned by the National Hockey League. So, let’s meet the principals . . .
In the white corner, from Moscow, Russia . . . standing six feet, two inches tall . . . weighing in at two hundred twelve and one-half pounds . . . . the O-VECH-kinator . . . Alex-AN-der O-O-O-O-O-O-O-O-VECH-kinnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn.
And, in the black corner . . . the pride of Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia . . . standing five feet, eleven and one-quarter inches tall . . . weighing in at one-hundred and ninety three pounds even . . . . Sidney “The Kid” crrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr-OS-byyyyyyyyyy.
L-L-L-L-et’s get the instructions from the referee, Blaine “Prime Cut” Angus . . .
“OK boys, no hooking, no holding, no clutching, no grabbing, keep your sticks down, and when I tell ya to go to the box, I don’t wanna hear any yappin’ . . . shake hands, and have a good game . . . “
DING! . . . Round one . . . Ovechkin comes out hard and fast with a bull rush to the Penguin net . . . he sends a backhand to the shoulder of Jocelyn Thibault, who shrugs the puck aside . . . Crosby counters with a stutter step at the blue line and a pass to Mark Recchi at the right wing face off dot . . . a wrister goes wide . . .
DING! . . . Round two . . . Crosby chirps at the ref . . . “they’re holdin’ me up at the blue line . . .” Angus waves him off to keep playing . . . Ovechkin tries a curl and drag, but the puck spins off his stick . . .
DING! . . . Round three . . . Ovechkin skates past the Penguin bench and winks at Crosby . . . “15 goals, kid” . . . Crosby waves back a picture of his rookie of the month award . . .
DING! . . . Round four . . . Crosby stops to pose with Mario Lemieux and Zigmund Palffy . . . Ovechkin counters with a Dainius Zubrus and a Ben Clymer . . . Crosby skates off chuckling . . .
DING! . . . Round five . . . Ovechkin steps around John LeClair and drills puck carrier Mario Lemieux with a check along the Penguin boards . . . Crosby hides his eyes and tells Ed Olczyk, “uh, my skates need sharpening . . . lots and lots of sharpening . . .” After five rounds, the judges have the bout scored, 3-2, Ovechkin . . .
We’re here with Jim Lampley and George Foreman who are calling the fight for HBO . . . champ, what to you think of the fight so far?
“Well, Ovechkin has a powerful straight right coming in from the left side, but Crosby knows how to slip those punches . . . this has all the makings of a classic fight, and nothing would go better with watching the fight than a double cheeseburger made on my George Foreman grill . . .”
DING! . . . Round six . . . Ovechkin takes a head-man feed from Steve Eminger, skates in alone on Thibault and slides one through the five-hole as he curls through the crease . . . Crosby counters on the power play with a cross-ice pass to Lemieux, who sends the puck in deep for a tap-in to Recchi to tie the game at one . . .
DING! . . . Round seven . . . Ovechkin skates by the Penguin bench reading a copy of his ESPN the Magazine article . . . Crosby skates past Ovechkin with a copy of his Reebok contract . . . DOWN GOES OVECHKIN! DOWN GOES OVECHKIN!! DOWN GOES OVECHKIN!!! Oh, that was a haymaker, fans . . . Crosby’s been waiting to spring that one all night and finally got his opening, but Ovechkin is up at the count of five . . . maybe he’s taken The Kid’s best punch . . .
DING! . . . Round eight . . . Ovechkin is circling his blue line, waiting for an opening to head up ice . . . Crosby is at the half boards with the puck . . . Crosby steps out, fakes a pass around Jamie Heward, and . . . OH, WHAT A HIT ON CROSBY BY OVECHKIN! THE KID IS DOWN! . . . THE KID IS DOWN!! Crosby staggers to his feet at the count of eight, Ovechkin standing in neutral ice . . . Angus cleans The Kid’s gloves, and makes sure he can continue . . .
DING! . . . Round nine . . . Ovechkin takes a pass from Andrew Cassels and roofs a wrist shot over Thibault’s blocker . . . then it’s Crosby on a breakaway . . . he skates in . . . goes to his backhand . . . denied by Olaf Kolzig!
DING! . . . Round ten . . . Crosby wins a draw to Ric Jackman who sends the puck to Erik Christensen in the slot . . . a one timer finds the back of the net . . . Crosby is credited with the secondary assist . . . Ovechkin skates into the Penguin zone . . . he curls back . . . rifles a pass onto the tape of Zubrus at the doorstep, but the puck skitters harmlessly into the corner . . . the judges have the bout scored, 6-3-1, Ovechkin.
DING! . . . Round eleven . . . Ovechkin sets up along the left wing boards on the power play…he surveys the formation...fires a pass to Jamie Heward pinching in on the right side...Heward whiffs on the puck . . . with Brendan Witt off for hooking, Crosby wheels out of the left wing corner...he walks the goal line and saucers a pass to Zigmund Palffy in the slot…Kolzig gloves the shot.
DING! . . . Round twelve . . . Crosby tries to step around Steve Eminger but it smeared along the boards…Crosby yaps at the ref, looking for an interference call . . . Ovechkin skates in on Brooks Orpik…he dips his shoulder and goes wide…Orpik takes Ovechkin down…no call . . . the players play on . . .
DING! . . . Round thirteen . . . Crosby looks to end it right here . . . he fires a combination…his Vanity Fair photo spread, followed up with his GQ shoot . . . Ovechkin takes the hits without flinching…”He's a great passer, like Gretzky, and he can see the ice. He makes a great pass; he's a really great player . . . “
DING! . . . Round fourteen . . . Ovechkin takes a pass from Eminger in the neutral zone…he skates in on Orpik…he dips his shoulder again and…FAKES going wide…he cuts inside, splitting the defense…in alone on Thibault…fakes going to the backhand, pulls the puck to his forehand and snaps it over Thibault’s glove . . . Crosby can’t answer the bell…he’s out on his stool in the fourteenth…it’s a TKO for Ovechkin. There is pandemonium in the arena . . . we have the official announcement . . .
L-L-L-L-L-L-L-Ladieees and gentlemen . . . The winnah, in a technical knockout in the 14th round, and new rookie champeen of the NHL . . . nnnnnnnnnnnumber 8, Alex-AN-der O-O-O-O-O-O-O-O-VECHKIN!!!
Jim? . . . George? . . . your thoughts . . .
“Well, I thought it was the most memorable first bout among rookies in the history of this great sport.”
“Absolutely . . . these kids are going to have many, many excellent bouts for years to come. It made me hungry for a TRIPLE cheeseburger!”
Stay tuned for the rematch!
-- The Peerless
Play hard, shake hands, drink beer.
"LA needs two hockey teams like Switzerland needs two navies" -- Norman Chad (from "My 10-Point Plan to Save Gary Bettman from Himself")
If you've read this far, you probably could use a hobby