Tabletop Norris Division Throwdown

So my dad calls me out of the blue the other day. It goes something like this:

HIM: Could you go to Amazon right now?
ME: Sure thing, dad. What’s up?
HIM: Do a search for “red wings hockey game.” Do you see the second item there?
ME: Yeah – the table game?
HIM: Do you think the kids would like that?
ME: (barely hiding my personal enthusiasm about this) Yeah, I think they would enjoy that.
HIM: Would you order that for me and have it shipped to you? I’d like to buy that for the kids. Don’t tell your mother about this.
ME: (now very excited) Sure thing, dad.

So today it arrives. I put it together as soon as it’s in the house. It’s pretty darn cool.

The best part? I tweeted this last week:

And what teams did it come with?

“DEFCON Goalie Panic 1”

Sean McIndoe for Grantland:

God bless the Philadelphia Flyers.

Look, Ilya Bryzgalov is one of the few genuine characters in the league. Between his legendary performance on HBO’s 24/7, his bizarrely endearing Twitter account, and his fear of bears, it’s hard to root against him.

Hard, but not impossible, as hockey fans will learn this year when they’ll all be secretly hoping that he fails spectacularly. Not because they don’t like him, of course. It’s just that he’s a goaltender who plays for the Flyers, and that means that even two bad games in a row will trigger DEFCON Goalie Panic 1 in Philadelphia.

They may be there already, if you believe recent reports that they’re in on trading for Luongo. But I want to see it go further. I want “Brodeur to Philly” rumors. I want a Roman Cechmanek comeback. I want them to sign Henrik Lundqvist’s identical twin brother, even though he doesn’t play goal.

Is it wrong that I really want this to happen? Read the whole article for the Down Goes Brown treatment of nine other players to watch in the NHL this year.

(You should buy his book, too.)

Why Won’t Toronto Fans Get Over Kerry Fraser’s Missed Call?

The celebration of this was yesterday, but I couldn’t not post it.

Sean McIndoe:

For those who don’t follow hockey, or who didn’t follow hockey about two decades ago, or who find themselves wondering why the one Toronto fan in the office has spent all week wearing a black armband and irrationally berating anyone who has nice hair, this Sunday marks the anniversary of one of the most notorious missed calls in hockey. It’s been 19 years since the night Kerry Fraser didn’t call Wayne Gretzky’s high-stick.

Detroit fans have plenty of hate still hanging around for the guy, too. Every time I see him as an analyst on TV I got a little reflexively grumpy.