Archive for February, 2007

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My Trip to Mexico: Comic Book Style

February 28, 2007

The amazing Tyson has created a hilarious comic book based on my trip to Mexico!

Click the image below to check it out (make sure to scroll down and click the “next” button to go to the next page of the comic).

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The Canuck’s deadline moves

February 28, 2007

sopel1.jpgThe Canucks’ made two very solid trades the day before the NHL’s trading deadline.

They re-acquired Brent Sopel from Los Angeles in exchange for a 2nd round pick and a 4th round pick. Sopel was sought after by several teams, because of his ability to be both a physical presence and powerplay point-man. I’m very happy with this move. The Canucks were in need of another top four defenseman to complement the current group, and Sopel was an excellent choice for that role. He has also expressed interest in re-signing with the Canucks, and that could be a good backup plan if Sami Salo bolts via free agency.

The ‘Nucks also acquired Bryan Smolinski from Chicago in exchange for a conditional 2nd round pick. Smolinski was someone I had mentioned as being the perfect fit for Vancouver. He has the talent to play in an offensive role (a great fit with Naslund), but is also responsible defensively, which enables him to play a 3rd line and penalty killing role as well. Another excellent move, and I’m surprised it only took a 2nd round pick to acquire him.

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NHL Trading Deadline thoughts

February 28, 2007

smyth.jpgHere’s my analysis of some of the trades during yesterday’s NHL trading deadline:

Gary Roberts (Pittsburgh) for Noah Welch (Florida)
Georges Laraque (Pittsburgh) for Dan Carcillo and a 3rd round pick (Phoenix)
– Pittsburgh wasn’t supposed to be in the playoff hunt this early in their rebuilding stage, but because they are, they needed to make a few veteran upgrades, and they did just that. They added an enforcer to protect Crosby and Malkin, and Laraque is the perfect man to do just that. He wanted to go to Pittsburgh, and he got his wish. Roberts will be a great veteran presence in the dressing room, and he’s still quite capable of being a valuable member on the ice as well. The Pens have a lot of good prospects, and could afford to give up Welch and Carcillo without harming their future.

Nolan Schaefer (Pittsburgh) for 7th round pick (San Jose)
– Schaefer is a top goaltending prospect, and I’m shocked that San Jose could only get a 7th round pick for him. They are very deep in goaltending prospects, but a 7th round pick is the lowest return you can get. A great move by Pittsburgh, as I’d expect Schaefer to back-up Marc-Andre Fleury next year once Jocelyn Thibault leaves via free agency this summer.

Martin Biron (Philidelphia) for 2nd round pick (Buffalo)
– At this point last year, teams were offering 1st round picks and high-end prospects for Biron, but this year, none of the playoff-bound teams needed a goaltender. The Sabres needed to clear salary space to make other acquisitions, so Biron had to be traded. Philidelphia were hoping to sign Biron as a free agent next season, so to get the inside track they traded for Biron, in hopes of finding chemistry with him and get him signed before he becomes a UFA on July 1st. A good move by Philly.

Ty Conklin (Buffalo) for 5th round pick (Columbus)
– After trading Martin Biron, Buffalo was in need of a backup. Conklin was obviously not their first, second or even tenth choice, but he should fill in as a decent bench-warmer. However, if Ryan Miller gets injured, Buffalo is finished.

Bill Guerin (San Jose) for Ville Nieminen, Jay Barriball and a 2007 1st round pick (St. Louis)
– San Jose matched Detroit and Nashville’s pickups (Bertuzzi and Forsberg, respectively) by picking up Guerin. Guerin is having a rebound season after his horrible 05-06 campaign. Guerin should be a great addition to San Jose’s already strong group of forwards, and they didn’t give up a whole lot in the process. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Guerin return to St. Louis next season as a free agent.

Aaron Ward (Boston) for Paul Mara (NY Rangers)
– After a lockerroom dispute/fight with star Jaromir Jagr, Ward had to go. Boston won this trade, but Mara should help The Rangers’ weak powerplay.

Brad May (Anaheim) for Michael Wall (Colorado)
– Brian Burke adds even more toughness to his lineup, and gives up Wall who is probably at best, an AHL-starter. A good trade, but not the forward upgrade most Ducks fans were probably looking for.

Todd Bertuzzi (Detroit) for Shawn Matthias and a conditional draft pick
– If Bertuzzi returns from injury, this will be a great pickup by Detroit. If not, there’s little risk as they didn’t give up much. “Big Bert” could be the power forward Detroit has desperately needed since Brendan Shanahan left for New York.

Pascal Dupuis and a 3rd round pick (Atlanta) for Alex Bourret (NY Rangers)
– An excellent trade for the Rangers. They give up a 3rd line checker that is a free agent at the end of the season in exchange for a top-end prospect in Alex Bourret.

Keith Tkachuk (Atlanta) for Glen Metropolit, a first and third-round draft pick in 2007 and a second-round draft pick in 2008, and if Atlanta re-signs Tkachuk, another 1st round pick in 2008 (St. Louis)
– An excellent trade by St. Louis, and a gross overpayment by Atlanta. Obviously, Atlanta is going all out to make the playoffs this season. If they do well, and make it to the semi-finals or better, this will be seen as a good move, but if they are eliminated in the first round, or happen to miss the playoffs entirely, GM Don Waddell will no longer have a job.

Dainus Zubrus and Timo Helbling (Buffalo) for Jiri Novotny, and a 1st round pick (Washington)
– A huge overpayment on Buffalo’s part. Jiri Novotny is a young, potential top-six forward, and the 1st round pick is just an added punch to the gut. I would have figured Novotny would have been enough, as Zubrus is nothing more than an average second-liner. But after all their injuries, Buffalo was desperate to add some offensive punch, and unfortunately had to overpay for a marginal player such as Zubrus.

Mattias Norstrom, Konstantin Pushkarev, 2007 3rd round pick and 4th round pick (Dallas) for Jaroslav Modry, Johann Fransson, 2008 1st round pick, 2007 2nd round pick and 3rd round pick (Los Angeles)
– Wow, what a large trade this one is. A good trade for Dallas, as Norstrom is a veteran leader, who will provide excellent defense for an already strong Dallas team. LA picks up some good draft picks, as well as a replacement for Norstrom in Modry, who is an under-rated offensive defenseman. Dallas was also able to acquire a good prospect in Pushkarev. Good trade for both teams, especially Dallas.

Brad Boyes (St. Louis) for Dennis Wiseman (Boston)
– I’m quite suprised Boston is giving up on Boyes after one poor season. A great trade for the rebuilding Blues, but Boston was still able to pick up a potential powerplay quarterback in prospect Wiseman.

Ryan Smyth (NY Islanders) for Ryan O’Marra, Robert Nilsson and 1st round pick (Edmonton)
– The biggest trade of the deadline. I know most Edmonton fans are probably quite unhappy with this trade, but I think it was a great move by Kevin Lowe. As much as they may not want to admit it, the Oilers will not make the playoffs this year, whether Smyth plays the final 20 games or not. Might as well trade him and get something, then potentially lose him for nothing at the end of the year. And get something they did. O’Marra and Nilsson are very good prospects, and the 1st round pick could be anywhere from the 13th-20th range in this year’s draft. If Smyth helps the Islanders have a lengthy playoff run, this will be a good trade for them, but I wouldn’t be suprised in the least to see Smyth return to the Oilers in the off-season. And when/if he does, this will prove to be an excellent move for the Oilers.

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Five meals I can’t live without…

February 27, 2007

caesarsalad1.jpgI love good food, and here’s five meals that, like the topic says, I could not live without…

1. Caesar Salad with Chicken at Ric’s Grill

2. The Crispy Crispy Roll at Momo Sushi

3. The Chicken Club pizza from Panago

4. Spicy Big Crunch Sandwich from KFC

5. The BLT Chicken Wrap from Boomers Bar & Grill

What are some meals that you couldn’t go without?

[Edit: How could I have forgotten wings?!?! As an honorable mention, I’m going to add Honey Garlic and Lemon Pepper wings from Brandt’s Creek Pub to my list of favorites.]

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Movie Review: “Lord of War”

February 27, 2007

lordofwar.jpgLast night I watched “Lord of War”, starring Nicholas Cage, Jared Leto and Ethan Hawke. I didn’t expect much, as I had heard it was somewhat of a boring movie. Wow, were those reviews ever off. While not as action-packed and high-paced as most Nic Cage movies, it was very far from being anything close to boring.

Lord of War is the story of a “gun runner”, basically someone who illegally sells weapons to mostly third-world countries. Cage does a great job at making you care for a character that you should normally despise. It was nice to see Cage in a role that is much more toned-down that the roles he’s usually doing.

Overall, a very interesting movie that is both thought-provoking and entertaining. Highly recommend it.

My Rating: 8.5/10

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Mexico Pictures

February 24, 2007

mexico.jpgAlong with creating a blog, I decided to finally create a Flickr account as well. Flickr, for those of you that don’t know, is an online photo sharing website. I’ve uploaded some of the pictures from our recent Mexico trip. Even though we didn’t have the greatest weather (cloudy skies nearly every day and even rain on some nights), it was still nice to get away for a week.

For now, I have only uploaded the pictures from Mexico, but I will be adding some more soon.

Click Here to see the pictures!

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Buffalo vs. Ottawa line brawl

February 24, 2007

A great YouTube video of Thursday’s line brawl between Buffalo and Ottawa. The goalies, Ray Emery and Martin Biron even get into it!