New Year NHL WTFs

The Habs played and lost last night. LaPierre replaced Pouliot on a line that was showing a lot of progress. For some off reason, LaPierre seemed like a suitable replacement for Kostitsyn, and poor PK seems like a lost puppy. With that in mind, I’ve decided to take a break from writing my Morning After comments.

I much prefer to talk about other stories happening in hockey. Remember, at the core of my soul I am a Habs fan, and I can’t bare to dissect a yet another late-period goal. The Habs will pick it up, and we’ll (ahem..I mean they) will start stringing wins together again.

With that in mind, I thought I would take today to share my favorite WTF of this 2010-2011 season:

1. The Washington Capitals

WTF! How does a team who finished at the top of their division and/or conference the past two season start forgetting how to win? How does the sport’s most prolific scorer stop scoring? And finally, how does a team who was synonymous with winning streak go on an 8-game losing streak, winning only once in the month of December?

I’ll tell you how — by scoring almost a goal a game less. Except for being blown-out by the Rangers 7-0, the Capitals are losing games by 1 or 2 goals. Which interestingly corresponds to Ovechkin’s decline in production. He has 12 goals this year and is on pace for about 30 goals. Last year he ended with 50 goals. I’m not laying blame, just merely pointing out the correlation.

2- The New Jersey Devils

WTF! I can’t even remember that last time the Devil’s weren’t in the top four of the conference, let alone not even in a playoff position. We all knew the Kovalchuk contract was bad, but this bad? Can you even blame a disaster of a season on one player (see above for an example)? I don’t want to  blame Kovalchuk for the Devil’s woes, but isn’t it interesting that since the trade deadline of last year the Devil’s have won just 16 times?! Again, not blame, just a fascinating correlation. I could also say that since Brodeur’s Olympic breakdown, the Devils have only won 17 times.

Basically, this team didn’t break this year, they broke last year sometime around March and don’t look to be recovering any time soon.

3- Atlanta Thrashers

WTF! When the the Thrashers become a team to take seriously? I sort of had my suspicions coming into this season, as I did pick a lot of Thrashers for my Fantasy pool, but I didn’t think they’d be THIS good.

I remember being at an Atlanta-Montreal game last year and some woman was wearing a Thrashers jersey. I leaned over to my friend and asked “who’s actually a Thrashers fan!?” It’s a bit of a random team to be totally in love with that you not only attend their away game in Montreal, but you buy the jersey and heckle the Habs the whole time. That kind of passion is usually reserved for the north.

If I see this same woman this season, I’ll be sure to give her a thumbs-up! I love Evander Kane, Pavelec is single-handily destroying me in one pool and saving me in another, and Tobias Enstrom is somebody I wish the Habs could get their hands on.

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