Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Another Season in the Books: Thrashers vs Penguins

The final game of the season always comes on way too quickly. As a Thrashers fan, your season ends pretty quickly, as playoff hockey is never an option. In late March when you look at the calendar for the season, it never feels like you’ve been to 41 games. Well, on some nights it does. On some nights the season can’t end soon enough (Toronto beating us 9-3…Carolina beating us 6 to 1). But here we are. You over pay for parking for the last time, you overpay for food for the last time, and most importantly, you get together with your hockey buddies for the last time of the season. Randy, Kerry and myself had club tickets. I was hoping to be able to have lots of space for my sign-apalooza I had planned. What I was most excited about was that my absolute favorite prospect, the Thrashers 2nd round pick (34th overall), Carl Klingberg, was playing in his first NHL game! I guess since Carl is all grown up now and playing in NHL, I’ll have to retire the “Klingy” nickname I gave him. I don’t know, I might revert back to it sometimes. So I only brought EIGHT signs. I had more planned, but time ran out. I made one for Zubarev, as I didn’t think I’d see any for him. I had one wishing Ladd well when he goes to Slovakia to play for Team Canada in the World Championships. I OF COURSE had one welcoming Carl to Blueland. I brought some previous signs including the Wrestlemania sign for Kane, the Ondrej the Giant sign, the “A Little is all you need” sign and “hockey belongs here.” My favorite new sign was a hit with the fans, the players and John Kincade. The sign said “Find yourself another hockey team to steal Winnipeg.” What you really needed to pay attention to was in RED! F-U-C-K Winnipeg were in red larger letters. All of the guys read it. A few chuckled.

Greg got a shot of all of my signs. I'm adjusting the Ladd sign, it was falling down.

Welcome to the NHL Carl Klingberg! Carl was wearing #48.

Buff deep in thought, maybe thinking of where he was this time last year.

The lovely Ice Magnolias had their signs for the game.

Carl is playing with the puck back there.

Watcha doing down there, pumpkin?

Stewie was stylin'! He had the fro kicking.

On the other end, thirsty Flower gets a drink!

Carl soaking it all in.

checking out my signs.

Michelle got this awesome picture of Carl checking out my Winnipeg sign.

Carl gets ready to take a shot on goal. You can see Gretchen's Schremp sign. Gretchen can always be counted on for a sign.

A freshly shaven Johnny stretches for the last time of the season. He must have shaved on the way out, he can grow a play off beard from the locker room to the ice...not that he needs to have that skill.

Final swarm the goalie :(

hanging out taking his last shots.

If you can't tell through the crappy blurred photo, that's Captain Andrew Ladd presenting Chris Thorburn with the "Players' Player" award.

You can't have the season ending game without a bit of tears. Dan Snyder's mom congratulates Bryan Little for winning the Dan Snyder Memorial Trophy for his work in the Atlanta community.

On to the game! Carl sitting on the bench. I was watching and waiting for a particular shot.

And there it is! Carl's first NHL shift!

Give those Pens hell, Carl!

Woo hoo! Captain Ladd scores on the power play. Enjoy that happiness, there won't be much more for the Thrashers or their fans.

They had Klingberg playing with a few different people. Here he is with Stapleton and Maxwell.

Carl fighting for the puck.

That's a whole lot of Rupp in front of the net!

Mason gets his leg pad on the puck.

Watch out Carl, Goddard is a goon!

Okay, this really is turning into the "Carl's first game" post. Here he is again with Antropov.

Some douche bag pointing at probably another douche bag.

Flower and friends are captivated by the in-arena entertainment.

Babies down! Kane and Burmistrov take a tumble.

Johnson makes a stop on Little.

Blah blah blah Pens win.

Fan appreciation time. Hey, want to appreciate the fans that DO show up? WIN! Or, you could just bitch and moan about attendance like Zach does:

The fans are great here and are vocal when they're here. They're very loyal when they're here."
So,on to some fun stuff. Captain Ladd was named the MVP of the season.

And in super fun land...Mr. Fred is named 7th Man! Woo Hoo!!

Nobody deserves this more than Mr. Fred. It only makes sense that he ask for Kane's jersey!

I have a great seat, I have tickets to the gun show!

Damn, Johnny has on a full shirt under his jersey.

Pavs and Byfuglien give their jerseys to some lucky fans.

Nice boogie chain, Buff!

Another season done! It's hard to believe. I naively look forward to next season. Maybe Carl will make another appearance. He thinks he's ready!
“When you watch the NHL and hear about the NHL you always think it’s such a great level, and it really is, but my first impression was that I can actually do the things I’m good and do it great out there. It was not all like I’m going to be the worst player on the team. I thought I could do the stuff I’m good at. So now that first game is over and I thought I did pretty good. I still have a lot left to show for sure, but it was a good first game. I can’t go in and be the best from the beginning. You have to build up your game.”


Anonymous April 12, 2011 at 2:50 PM  

Great pics. Great signs, especially the Winnipeg one! I always look forward to your pics and posts. Thanks for all the time and effort you put into your website.

Why all the love for Klingsberg? A serious question, not sarcasm. What do you like about his game so much?

Sunshine36616 April 12, 2011 at 4:42 PM  

Thank you very much! The Winnipeg sign was a crowd pleaser, lol.

That's a great question. I wish I had a great answer! If you have followed this blog or know me, you know I rarely have GOOD reasons for picking someone as a favorite. I watched his interview after being drafted and he cracked me up.

Being unemployed for 14 months, I was able to attend to prospect camps that he was at and enjoyed watching him play. You could tell his seasons with Frolunda had done him well. He's a big kid, but skates well. He's aggressive and tough. I liked his post draft talk of driving to the net. And he was a goof ball on the ice at prospect camp lol.

Unfortunately I don't get to follow him closely when he's in the SEL. I check his stats and stuff during the year, but it's hard when the site is in Swedish lol. I watch him in international competitions when he plays.

I was impressed with his game Sunday. During warm ups he looked a little nervous, but when he hopped on the ice, he looked like he belonged there. He had a little over 10 minutes of ice time during which he drew a penalty and made a hit. He was also like one pass away from making his first NHL goal. I'm really hoping he gets invited to training camp.

Beth Dolgner April 13, 2011 at 7:20 AM  

I thought Klingberg made a great debut! He jumped right into his role and showed more heart than some of our regular roster guys.

Zach's quote about "they're loyal when they're here" really irks me. Talk about passive-aggressive.

Looking forward to your posts over the summer!


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