December 16 2013 12:54PM
Hockey works in a lot of different ways. Last week, the Maple Leafs may have sandwiched their worst game of the season with two of their best. One of the best-kept secrets in hockey is that momentum is mostly illusory. Humans are wired to look for patterns, and take mental leaps to separate processes from results as long as it lines up with a predetermined conclusion with narrative support.
It's hard to predict what happens in hockey when it comes to results, and commentators have tried for years to look at recency, games in the past week, recent games between the same opponents, in an effort to better predict or explain what happens in advance. Most of it is hocus pocus, and a good post at Arctic Ice Hockey summarized this today. No matter what you're told tonight, the result of the last Penguins and Maple Leafs game will have no bearing on what happens tonight.
The second best-kept secret in hockey is that the Pittsburgh Penguins are actually not a very good team.
December 16 2013 08:22AM
Episode one of the Leafs-Wings 24/7 series aired in Canada last night!
Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
December 15 2013 08:19PM
When the NHL first announced that the Toronto Maple Leafs would face the Detroit Red Wings in the (then 2013) Winter Classic, I was incredibly excited. Not because it was an outdoor game, not because I in any way liked the idea of the Leafs having to play more games than usual against the Red Wings, and not even because it'll be the highest attended NHL game ever. Okay, that last bit is pretty cool. But no, my main excitement came from the two teams being on HBO 24/7, giving an uncensored, behind the scenes look at the two respective teams.
It may be a little early to write off all four episodes, but so far, I'm not a fan of what I'm seeing. With that said, here's a full rundown:
December 15 2013 05:16PM
On this episode, the Leafs and Canucks completely kicked ass so everybody's pretty happy. CHRIS MANAGED TO MAKE EVERYBODY WANNA FIGHT ANYWAY.
Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
December 15 2013 04:09PM
There's something about the St. Johns IceCaps and not letting go. A large chunk of their core has stayed with the team for all three seasons that they've been in the league, their ownership group (True North Sports & Entertainment) still actively sells merchandise of their previous incarnation (the Manitoba Moose). And somehow, the Toronto Marlies having moved from St. Johns nearly a decade ago is considered the grounds for a rivalry, despite the two teams (and their parent clubs) being in different conferences.
But hey, at least the season series this year is four games instead of eight. Plus, both teams are at the same skill level, so they're at least entertaining. Today's incarnation saw the Marlies win 3-2, taking both home games against the Winnipeg Jets affiliate.