The Sin Bin

December 5, 2010 11:06 PM

They Said what? You have got to be kidding me? Nah!

To piggy back on what Let's Go Mavs had to say; I find this article remotely entertaining, laughable and I have to pass it on; it's a must read by Goal Gophers. I mean honestly; you can't be serious with that? I wonder if Chris Miller wrote that with a straight face. Thanks for giving me something to laugh about today. Look at the Gopher's roster what do the not so Golden Gophers have, something like 19 NHL draft picks on their roster and none of them can score on a consistent basis? The problem is that the Gophers might have too many top of the line players and don't have enough roll players and grinders. At lower levels most of them knew how to score goals. That being said, not every players has to be a first round draft choice on your roster, you need to have some grit and role players.
Not sure how many of the Gophers' 50 shots I'd say were "Grade A" but on probably three or four of their best chances they didn't even get the puck on net. Nick Bjugstad broke his stick on a one-timer with a yawning net in the first period, and Taylor Matson and Jake Hansen were both flummoxed in the third when they were late arrivers in the zone, got great set ups and just missed the net badly.

Jay Barriball had two breakaways, said he was happy with the shots he got, but was just stopped.

Mike Hoeffel returned after sitting out Friday with the flu and might have been a step slow. Jacob Cepis was noticeable and Bjugstad had two especially dominant shifts. He's a big kid and when he gets some experience he should have dominant stretches.

But, that's what they say about a lot of Gophers. Problem now is putting the puck in the net. Maybe there aren't a lot of natural goal-scorers on the team ... maybe that's been a problem for quite a while.[Read th whole Story here]
Being a weekend duffer golfer I know a sandbagging when I see one, actually, that's not a sandbagging that's a ____ storm. In fact I think I smell Barbra Streisand or err, insert your own adjective, you know what I mean? Again, I am going to call shenanigans on that article. Can you shovel it any faster and harder? I mean really; the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers get the first pick of best of the blue chip hockey players that live in the state of Minnesota... The Gophers also get to select the best players they want from the Minneapolis Metro area, that play for the USDT under 17 and under 18 teams before the other teams in the WCHA even get to take a look at them. Look at their roster again, if you don't believe me... It's stuffed full of kids that were once super stars for their high school and or junior teams.

So what's the problem? Don't get me wrong Donny Lucia is a good hockey coach and is going through a bit of a rough stretch. You don't win two national titles in Division I college hockey being a stiff or a classic buffoon. Success has been Donny's biggest nemesis; he has a great college arena that is usually full of adoring, cheering, rabid fans. The University has a killer television package and he can get all of the best players. I doubt he even has to work all that hard to get great players to commit to his program. The other league coaches are the ones that have to coach and work harder and do more with less. They have all the perceived advantages that other teams don't have. Or do they?

The problem is; Donny Lucia has recruited too many pretty boy/entitlement players that take the "me first" attitude and don't grasp the concept of being a third line player, getting their nose dirty, blocking shots and or biding their time till they get their chance to play on the third line. Half of these kids on the Gophers roster already have one foot out the door to the NHL and are just there because they are told that's the place to be till they get to step out on the ice as an NHL player.

Not everyone can be on the first line, first power play unit, some one has to play on the third line and or go in the corners and do the dirty little things that make teams successful, like killing penalties and being a defensive forward.

Again, look at the little things that Mario Lamoureux does for the Sioux on the ice that very rarely gets noticed by the casual fair weather hockey fans. When I was talking to a SCSU fan in the Liffey bar last season during the Final Five all he could do was belittle a role player like Mario Lamoureux. That's the same player that kills penalties, takes face offs in key time of big games and does the gritty things that help teams win games. The SCSU fan that I was talking to got mad at me because I wouldn't admit that Mario was just a worthless goon that would be lucky to play on the SCSU Huskies, that Hakstol inadvertently sent over the player's bench wall to go fight their almighty second line player Aaron Marvin... Obviously, this guy I was talking too was very intoxicated;and I might add a mountain of a man and I could tell that it just wasn't getting through to his thick skull. I excused myself from the conversation and left this mouth breather behind before he threw me over the bar for failing to see his point of view. One could say that logical reasoning and alcoholic beverages just don't mix. I am also not getting into a fight in a bar over a hockey game, yeah that would be fun trying to explain that one to my boss and or wife, I am sure they would have been less than impressed with me.

If you think I am full of it go back and watch the video from last night's game. That third/fourth line player did all of the little things that helped the Sioux win. Mario along with a few of the other Sioux players also took the SCSU Huskies off their game and he caused some of them to lose their mind, they were taking runs at him and he kept playing hard to the whistle. I would also rather have one less disgruntled blue chip hockey player on my roster that's only going to play 7 - 10 minutes a game and have a rugged third or fourth line player that knows his role and does the little things that help my team be successful.

I definitely appreciate and like those types of less heralded hockey players, because they are so valuable to their respective teams. That's what the Gophers and to a certain extent the SCSU Huskies lack from their team. I can assure you that Dean Blais' teams have these types of role players as well as George Gwozdecky and Tom Serratore.

Every year there are two or three Gopher players that move on because they were getting "screwed" by coach Lucia and his staff. I would say that the Gophers need more players like Jay Barriball that know what sacrifice is all about...

Add to that they have a major league bubbling buffoon coaching the defense in Jon Hill. I don't see how any one can say that he is an up grade over their beloved and respected former assistant coach Mike Guentzel, I no idea why they keep Hill around, but I am thankful for it, because as long as he is around coaching the Gophers defense they are going to continue to fail.

In conclusion; this article isn't really a shot at the beat writers from Goal Gophers because I think for the most part they do a good job covering their team and they give me much reading enjoyment. It's more of a refutation of a mind set that is out there in college hockey. I mean I know the Star and Tribune can't be overly critical of their team or they could lose access to the coaching staff and not be able to report on their team as closely as they would like.

Also, I would love to hear what Minnesota or fans from other teams that play more of finesse style game think... College hockey is changing to a game that is starting to mirror the NHL. I think the up and down the ice finesse style of hockey is a thing of the past. If you want to watch that style of hockey, Europe might be the place for you to go.

The game is faster, the players are stronger, the game is more violent and there is less room to roam out there. Even if the refs call the obstruction on the ice correctly. Gone are the days of skating up and down the ice taking shots on net untouched, every inch of the ice is contested. There is little room for self centered primadonnas that only think of themselves.

Cross Posted @ Goon's World.

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