Thursday, May 27, 2010


REASON #73
He's Providing a Bright Future for Tomorrow's Hockey Stars
(with his "Little Penguins Learn to Play Hockey" program!)!!!

In 2008 Sid launched this program along with his family, the Penguins organization, Reebok, and Dick's Sporting Goods.  The program was created to provide families with some help to lessen the financial strain that purchasing hockey equipment can place on a typical and low-income households.

In the two years of the it's existence, Sid's program has allowed a total of 1,200 young children between the ages of 4 to 7 to take part in the sport of hockey which probably would've proved difficult for alot of them without it.

First-time participants are provided with the following equipment (CLICK HERE to see / read details about each piece):
  • Little Penguins Jersey
  • Little Penguins Helmet Stickers
  • Reebok 4K Helmet
  • Reebok SC87-1 Skates
  • Reebok SC87-3 Gloves
  • Reebok SC87-3 Shoulder Pads
  • Reebok SC87-3 Shin Guards
  • Reebok SC87-3 Elbow Pads
  • Reebok SC87-3 Pants
  • Reebok SC87 32” Bag
  • Reebok 2K Stick
Even for those of us who aren't as aware of what it takes to play hockey, its pretty apparent that this is a long list that costs a "pretty penny!" 

So you gotta hand it to Sid, he's amazing and wants to do something productive with his time and money that helps others ...

Have I mentioned HOW MUCH I love him?!!! ; P

Where My Ladies At?

THESE ARE OUR STORIES
(How I Became a [Female] Hockey Fan)!
Okay, I really don't have a great and glamorous fan story. It's pretty simple actually. You see, I live in good ol' Tennessee, and not even near Nashville. The most action we get is high school and college football. Now, I have a tendency to go through "phases". I'll like one particular sport and then the next week I'll like another, but I have to say hockey has been the one to stick. I can't get enough of it. And I really don't think being a hormonal 16 year old with sex on the brain all the time has anything to do with it. I mean sure, most of my favorite players are nice to look at, but when you really get into the sport, you begin to understand why these guys love it so much. Evgeni Malkin had me at hello (at least I think it was hello, I can't really tell with his accent). I've yet to make it to a game, that's my one big dream for now. Just to get to a game. Hopefully in the near future that will come true.

~Maybe One Day~
Lauren S.
Simple or not, everyone has her story and it doesn't make it any more or less significant!!  THANKS for sharing, Lauren!!

Don't forget, if you wish to submit your story, I kindly ask that you
email them directly to me so they don't end up being repetitive for some of the readers. Also, if you don't want me to include your name, please let me know that as well (what I'll normally do is put your first name and last initial if I have it OR just your screen name).

FEEL FREE TO INCLUDE A PICTURE!!


I also want to let you know I LOVE these stories (and so do alot of our readers) - I've always found it interesting no matter who the fan, so I'm enjoying ALL OF THIS IMMENSELY!! KEEP THEM COMING, but I ask that you
email them please - THANKS!!!

Also, I ask that you please BE PATIENT as I'm still receiving TONS of stories (they'll be posted in the order I received them, to be fair). If you sent in a story, it will eventually be on the blog - I promise!! ; ) JUST BE SURE TO KEEP THEM COMING (the more the better!)!! AS A NOTE, I'm currently on stories I received back in November 2009!!!


thesteelcitysportsfan@gmail.com

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Western Conference Hottie: Dan Boyle (San Jose Sharks)

IMPORTANT HOCKEY STUFF: Undrafted after four years with the Miami RedHawks of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA), Boyle was signed as a free agent by the Florida Panthers on March 30, 1998. He played his first two seasons in the Panthers' farm system in the AHL, earning All-Rookie Team honours in 1999, as well as Second Team All-Star honours in 1999 and 2000. Boyle earned a full-time roster spot with the Panthers in 2000–01, recording 4 goals and 22 points. The next season, his fourth in Florida, he was traded to the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for a fifth round draft choice (Martin Tůma) in 2003 on January 7, 2002.

Boyle quickly emerged as an offensive threat on the highly-talented Lightning, playing behind Vincent Lecavalier, Martin St. Louis and Brad Richards. He recorded 13 goals and 53 points in his first full season with the Lightning in 2002–03 before helping the team to the 2004 Stanley Cup championship. He recorded his first career NHL hat trick against the New York Rangers on December 23, 2006, adding an assist for a four-point game in a 4–3 win. The following season, Boyle elevated his game to career-high numbers of 20 goals, 43 assists and 63 points, good enough for Second Team All-Star honours.

He suffered a major setback, however, in September 2007, injuring himself in a freak accident after a pre-season game when a skate slipped off a hook in his locker and hit him in the left wrist, severing three tendons. Boyle underwent initial wrist surgery on September 23; he attempted to return on October 29, but after playing his first four games of the 2007–08 season, Boyle underwent additional surgery on the injured wrist, missing another 36 games. He did not make a full comeback until January 24, 2008, scoring two goals in his return, and soon thereafter was re-signed to a six-year, $40 million contract extension on February 25. He completed his injury-shortened campaign with 25 points in 37 games.

Despite coming off a recent contract extension with the Lightning, on July 4, 2008, Boyle was traded along with Brad Lukowich to the San Jose Sharks in exchange for Matt Carle, Ty Wishart, a first round draft pick in 2009 and a fourth round draft pick in 2010. Boyle was pressured to waive his no-trade clause by Tampa Bay's new ownership, who said they would otherwise place him on waivers where he would likely be claimed by the Atlanta Thrashers. Already knowing Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and Evgeni Nabokov, Boyle agreed to be traded to the Sharks.

In his first season with the Sharks, he tallied 16 goals and 57 points over 77 games, leading all team defencemen. The following season, on December 31, 2009, Boyle scored his 100th goal against the Phoenix Coyotes in a 3–2 shootout win. He finished the campaign with 15 goals and 58 points. In the opening series of the 2010 playoffs, Boyle ended game three against the Colorado Avalanche in overtime by inadvertently shooting the puck into his own net. Pressured by Avalanche forward Ryan O'Reilly, Boyle attempted to ring the puck around the boards behind his net, but it was deflected by O'Reilly into the Sharks' net between Nabokov's pad and the post. Nonetheless, the Sharks won the series 4-2, winning games 4, 5, and 6. Boyle had a point in all three of these games.

REALLY IMPORTANT STUFF: When I saw this one the other night. I just HAD to do him for Stephanie. Just exactly her "type" don't you think ladies? (although I don't want any of you all fighting over him.)

There's THIS article (22 Reasons Dan Boyle Is Better Than You [and yes, I do read "Fear the Fin" on occasion, I have to keep tabs on the enemy you know, so I can poke fun, when they flame out in the playoffs for another year.]). And even more than that, he's got his own website.

And well, I'll just let the feathered picture speak for it's self, I mean what could I possibly add to a picture with 1) Skin 2) feathers and 3) a guy who looks like that!!!!! [Breathe Stephanie!!!!!] I'm sure I don't need to elaborate on any of the ideas that come to mind when you look at that picture. Nope, I don't need to tell any of you what feathers, and a smokin hot hockey player bring to mind, now do I?

You can't resist a giggle when you watch this video, and doesn't he look so cute frustrated?



I hope if I were to visit San Jose the weather was very VERY inclement, and I had to stay indoors (with him) all day. [sly wink]

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Crosby Picture of the Week

[UPDATE]
from HftL reader observation, "emilyy8758" writes (THANKS!!): 
It looks like Eaton is closest to Sid, beside him is Orpik I think, and Fleury is on the other end wearing a backwards baseball cap...as he always does :P
Since the Penguins season ended a week or so ago, there hasn't been much in the way of recent / new things about them and that includes pics; however, I decided to go on one of my searching sprees for Sid pics and much to my surprise there were a few that I hadn't seen before (normally when I do that, its the SAME OLD PICS I've seen 1,000 times before!)!!

So here's what I got, ladies (it even comes complete with a little story / explanation!) ...


This picture was actually taken only a few months back (March 2010) when the Penguins were in Tampa Bay to play the Lightning, according to the site I found it on.

It's Sid with some "average Joe" who happened to be lucky enough to have "the opportunity to train and shoot hoops with Sidney Crosby ..."  Quite honestly, I just think the lucky bastard happened to be at the same gym at the same time that Sid and the Pens were there (if you look closely there in the background, there looks to be a few other players complete with matching shirts like the one Sid is sporting ... (talk about team spirit!) I think I can make out Fleury and maybe Malkin, but I can't quite make out the other three!). 

ANYWAY, this guy actually turned the opportunity / pic into a short little post for his investment blog which, suffice it to say, was the last post to appear on it.  The guy's name is Mike Kane and he's involved with "foreclosure investing" from what I can get out of the little I read on his blog (which was his Sid article!) and  put a spin on the story relating it to foreclosure investing (I'm assuming to get a few more interested readers) ... honestly, it's quite clever from a "D-I-Y" PR / website marketing point-of-view!!
Do you think there’s some life and business lessons to be learned here from a guy like Sidney Crosby who’s accomplished so much at such an early age? ABSOLUTELY!
I think the lessons learned from Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins is something that one can apply to life and/or their business because drive, passion and teamwork are all important in life.
BUT THE BOTTOM LINE [for me] IS:  Sid's looking fine in this pic, as always, and it was perfect for today's post REGARDLESS of where I found it PLUS the way / where I found it was a little amusing to me (and figured it would be for you as well which is why I shared the story!)!!!
; P

So ENJOY!!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Eastern Conference Eye Candy: Boris Valábik (Atlanta Thrashers)

Although we've previously written posts based on recommendations from HftL readers, this post is the first from an "official suggestion" (THANKS, Sunshine36616!) -- the first of MANY, we're hoping!!!

And I've seriously acquired a new appreciation for the Atlanta Thrashers thanks to this one!! ; )

HOCKEY FACTOR
Valábik began his career in the junior league of his home country, Slovakia (which has had NUMEROUS names: Extraliga / Slovak Extraliga / West Extraliga / Boss Extraliga / ST Extraliga / T-Com Extraliga / Slovnaft Extraliga), playing for HK Ardo Nitra in the 2002-2003 season.  That first year created his foundation for being the type of player he continues to be today since, as a defenseman, he was about as productive as he was aggressive with 14 points (2 G, 12 A) and 145 penalty minutes* in 46 GAMES!!

*[penalty minutes appear to be Valábik's "strong point" as a player and is a common thread among each of his seasons regardless of the league / team --- although I honestly considered putting this bit of info in the "hotness factor" of the post instead of here since it's an extremely sexy quality and not necessarily the best one to have as a player!!]

He moved on from the Slovakia junior league after that year in the junior league to play for the Kitchener Rangers in the OHL for three seasons (2003-04, 2004-05, 2005-06) earning a total of 725 penalty minutes* throughout those three years.  In his rookie season, he ranked second in the OHL, led league rookies and topped league's defensemen with a career-best 278 penalty minutes* as well as finished third among the team's defensemen and eighth among OHL rookie defensemen in scoring, named to both the OHL First All-Rookie Team and CHL All-Rookie Team as well as played in the CHL Top Prospects Game!

Aside from collecting penalty minutes during his time in the OHL, he was drafted by the Atlanta Thrashers in the 1st round (10th overall) of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft eventually playing for their AHL affiliate, the Chicago Wolves, for two seasons as well helping them to win the Calder Cup (2007-2008) before making his NHL debut for the Thrashers in 2007-2008.  The season of his debut, Boris played a total of seven games, but collected a total of 42 penalty minutes* without scoring any points. He went back and forth between the AHL / NHL teams for two seasons prior to earning a permanent spot with Atlanta this past 2009-2010 season, but missed 16 consecutive games at the beginning of the season due to an ankle injury.

He's also represented Slovakia on a number of occasions winning the silver medal in the 2003 World Junior U18 Championships.  Other appearances include 2004 World Junior U18 Championships, 2005 and 2006 World Junior Championships and 2009 Men's World Ice Hockey Championships.

HOTNESS FACTOR
There's TONS of hotness exuding from Boris (just LOOK at this 6'7, 245 pound hockey hunk!  Kena ... please pick yourself up off the floor!!  And here we thought Chara was the only gargantuan male there is in the NHL!); HOWEVER, I have to admit I came up a little short when it came to the personal side of this hottie ...

With being as aggressive as he is (and seeing how he earns so many penalty minutes), you just know that some of it develops into full-on scraps and makes him a fighter (and it does - with at least one fight in every season he has played since his OHL days back in 2003-2004 which is also the year he's had the most fights with a total of 18!)!!

Valábik admired Peter Bondra and Chris Pronger growing up as a young player in Slovakia who started playing at the age of 6.

He's multi-lingual and fluent in English, Slovakian, and German (that's quite an attractive trait right there!)!!  Although you may have a hard time hearing which language he is speaking since I've read he's soft-spoken (um, even more attractive ... a soft-spoken aggressor ... interesting!)!!

According to his WIKI page, Valábik chose to wear the number five this past season (2009-2010) because the Roman numeral for five is "V" which is the first letter of his last name and not because, as many believe, he graduated high school in 2005 (although note that this little bit of information is not cited).

THANKS for the AWESOME Response, Ladies!!

There has been such a great response to the "HftL Suggestion Box!"  THANKS to all of you willing participants - you didn't let us down!!  We never realized just how many post-worthy hockey hotties are out there!!

We have plenty to keep all of us busy over the next few weeks, so keep an eye out for a post on your player(s) ...

BUT KEEP THOSE SUGGESTIONS COMING!!!

And be sure to check back later today for the ECEC ... it's still a "work in progress," but should be up sometime today!!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

HftL [Hockey Player] Suggestion Box

You know WE LOVE your suggestions here at HftL, so we're sending a "shout out" for all requests ... if you have that special player in mind or just want to learn more about one in particular, LET US KNOW!!!

We are always open to suggestions for "Western Conference Hotties" (NHL), "Eastern Conference Eye Candy" (NHL), and NOW "FUTURE SWEETS: Fun-Size Eye Candy and Junior Mints" (AHL, ECHL, OHL, WHL, and QMJHL)!!!

Let us know who we're missing and we'll be glad to feature a post on them, but be patient because we can't get to them all at once ... all good things come to those who wait!!! ; )

As a more permanent reminder that we're always interested in hearing from you, our lovely readers, we've added a new "HftL Suggestion Box" widget that opens up an email automatically addressed to us at:

Thursday, May 20, 2010


REASON #72
He Knows When He Needs a Break
(regardless of what anyone else thinks!)!!!

I really admire him for this one!

The very first thing I thought about when I heard that Sid declined the invitation to play for Canada at Worlds was that he just needs a break (and that it's been pretty much non-stop since their first Stanley Cup run in 2008) -- with 2008 playoffs all the way through to the SC Final, then again in 2009 winning the Stanley Cup (plus all the hoopla surrounding that), and the Olympics in Vancouver then making a decent run all the way through the 2nd round of the playoffs this season ... thats ALOT of hockey without much of a break in between!!

I'm sure it can't be easy listening to everyone give their opinions about why they believe it's a huge disappointment (even a "dishonor") that you're not representing your own country in the IIHF World Hockey Championships, but I'm sure Sid has found a way to get past all the BS (and IT IS utter BS) ... I mean listen to this (from the IIHF webpage):
Players who say no to representing their country at the World Championship without a legitimate reason turn their backs not only on the team and its fans but also to the system which developed them and made them rich and famous. They should pay back, but they don’t.
You have heard this many times before: “It’s an honour to represent your country. I feel proud every time I put on the jersey.”

Well, pride and honour seem to be very selective qualities. When a player wants to play – in the Olympics, for example, where he finds the stage big enough and the setting appealing enough – he talks about pride and honour.
OK, I'm a little confused because it would seem as though this bonehead is talking about one player in particular - Sid, to be specific - yet it doesn't name him UNTIL THE END of the article AND YET everyone knows who he's referring to throughout ... STILL there are qualities he includes in this article that are nothing like Sid ... for instance, "pride and honour seem to be very selective qualitites," and "... the Olympics, for example, where he finds the stage big enough and the setting appealing enough - he talks about pride and honour."  Now, IDK, that just doesn't seem like our Sid, so does this guy even know what he's talking about?

Probably not and he's probably just one of those "Crosby-haters" who are pretty much able to find just about anything to try to make Sid look bad, but guess what?!  This douchenozzle is the one who is looking bad especially when you have others, that know him and the NHL a little better, who are coming to Sid's defense (from TSN yesterday).
Scott Salmond, the men's national team director for Hockey Canada, called the story "inappropriate."

"Sidney Crosby's the guy they singled out -- he's played in two finals (in 2008 and 2009), he's played in the second round of the playoffs (this year), he's played in the Olympics for us," said Salmond. "I don't think it's fair to single him out. We respect where he is and we respect what he's done for us and I think what he'll do for us in the future."
Canadian captain Ray Whitney took issue with the fact that Crosby's name was included in the story.
"I don't think it's fair to mention him," said Whitney. "Obviously, any big tournament would like to have one of the world's top players, (but) the IIHF doesn't understand how hard the NHL is, how hard the schedule is. ...
"I think (the IIHF) should concentrate more on making it more appealing for guys like (Crosby) to want to come over here and play."
You take as much time as you need, Sid, there's plenty of time in your career to give back to Canada and hockey especially when some of them are so eager / anxious to take it from you!!

Where My Ladies At?

THESE ARE OUR STORIES
(How I Became a [Female] Hockey Fan)!
I grew up in a town just outside Toronto, so as a child I watched the Toronto Maple Leafs on Hockey Night In Canada. Always pestering my dad as to what was happening in the game. I had never really considered myself a fan as a child because I just watched whatever my dad was watching. As I grew up, other sports took my attention and hockey was put on the back-burner. That was until my grade 11 math class, there were only about 15 people in the class and only 4 girls. I wasn't particularly good friends with any of the girls so I naturally started talking with the rest of the guys in my class. Well, all they talked about what hockey, seeing as several of them played on teams in the city. That was when I decided to get back into hockey, I started watching more games on the TV, looking up games on the NHL website and looking up team roster's to know all the players' names.

I was instantly drawn to the Pittsburgh Penguins, their core of young players was amazing to watch (and Sidney Crosby is nice to look at). Plus, Jordan Staal played for the OHL team in my city and I remember watching a few games when he played here. With my choice of NHL teams, I had to defend my team and its players constantly; from the taunts of "Sidney Crybaby" to "Pens aren't going to make the playoffs." I shrugged them off and stuck with my team. Which brings me to this past playoffs; every time they showed a Pittsburgh game, I took control of the TV and would fight whoever tried to take the remote. I had a collage of Penguins Photoshops that I had found on the internet posted behind my computer. When it came time for Game 7 of the Finals, I sat faithfully in front of my TV, watching the final minutes behind my fingers. I nearly tackled my father after he changed the channel after the game was done, as I wanted to watch all the celebrations.

And this is how I became a female hockey fan!

Rebecca van Staalduinen
Peterborough, Ontario, Canada
Again, another story involving a girl's love for hockey beginning with the influence of her father (I just LOVE that!!)!  And HOW LUCKY to be from the town where Jordan Staal played and to be able to watch him in the OHL ... just amazing.  THANKS for sharing your story with us, Rebecca!!

Don't forget, if you wish to submit your story, I kindly ask that you
email them directly to me so they don't end up being repetitive for some of the readers. Also, if you don't want me to include your name, please let me know that as well (what I'll normally do is put your first name and last initial if I have it OR just your screen name).

FEEL FREE TO INCLUDE A PICTURE!!


I also want to let you know I LOVE these stories (and so do alot of our readers) - I've always found it interesting no matter who the fan, so I'm enjoying ALL OF THIS IMMENSELY!! KEEP THEM COMING, but I ask that you
email them please - THANKS!!!

Also, I ask that you please BE PATIENT as I'm still receiving TONS of stories (they'll be posted in the order I received them, to be fair). If you sent in a story, it will eventually be on the blog - I promise!! ; ) JUST BE SURE TO KEEP THEM COMING (the more the better!)!! AS A NOTE, I'm currently on stories I received back in November 2009!!!


thesteelcitysportsfan@gmail.com

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

HftL's Hockey Cup of Hotness

As you can see, Kena took a little break (its a HARD JOB looking at all these sexy hockey players for you guys, but SOMEONE has to do it, right?!!) which is why there's no WCH.  BUT ... she had an absolutely wonderful idea while I was talking to her last night.  She suggested we start a new HftL Poll in honor of the final four teams left in the playoffs (a poll HftL-Style, OF COURSE!) and I decided to kick it up one more notch!!!

We want to know which of the four teams left (Blackhawks, Sharks, Habs, Flyers) should win HftL's "Hockey Cup of Hotness?"

TELL US ... poll opens today and will end when the last team standing raises that glorious silver trophy!!!  And please keep in mind, ladies, that this has NOTHING to do with who you think will win the Stanley Cup and has EVERYTHING to do with which team you think is the hottest / best looking!!! ; )  If you feel like elaborating on your choice, you can do so in the "comments" section, but the poll will stay in the column along the left side of the blog!!

VOTE AS MUCH / AS MANY TIMES AS YOU LIKE (but make it count and don't try to fix things ... be fair!)!!

If the poll is popular enough, we'll consider making it an annual thing JUST LIKE THE STANLEY CUP!!! ; )

So start voting for the hottest team, ladies!!!  WE'RE COUNTING ON YOU!!! : )

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Crosby Pictures of the Week (2009-2010 Season Comes to an End)

It took me this long to even look at pictures from Game 7 and its actually still a little painful (I mean, you can actually see the emotion on Sid's face on most of these!)!!

Although I have to say that it wasn't a total loss of a season ... the Pens and Sid gave us alot of exciting hockey!!

Penguins Karaoke Their Playoff Blues Away

Last Friday, the Penguins players blew off a little steam at Excuses Bar & Grill in Southside ... it turned out to be an amazing night for everyone lucky enough to be at the bar.


Excuses Bar & Grill "Sometimes, I go to work. And, I have a person crab at me because I have the audacity to put a lemon. In their lemonade. And. Sometimes, I go to work and get to see Sidney Crosby sing Karaoke and not need his bodyguard, because we let him be a kid. A very polite and cool kid, at that. Or Jordan Staal, Brook Orpik,... Chris Kunitz, Max Talbot and Billy "Freakin'" Guerin. Okay...the whole team."
Pittsburgh Frank "Craig Adams was singing lead & Sid did back up on 'Don't Stop Believing'. Mike Rupp sang 'The Gambler'. And it may have been Adams again on 'Sweet Caroline'. Can't quite remember. But, I do remember the crowd chanting 'Let's Go Pens' during the Bah Bah Baah part of the chorus. Bless the Pens effort on the mike but they should stick with thier day jobs."

Monday, May 17, 2010

Eastern Conference Eye Candy: Matt Carkner (Ottawa Senators)

So I think its safe for me to do an ECEC on an Ottawa Senator since we've been about a month removed from the playoff rivalry especially since the Pens season ended with a Game 7 loss to the Canadiens (I actually started this and had it planned for last week's ECEC and it didn't work out that way).

HOCKEY FACTOR:
To say that Carkner worked his way up to the top [NHL] from ground level is probably an understatement since he spent the majority of his career to this point "mucking and grinding" in the minor leagues for a total of eight years (Cleveland Barons 2001-2006, WBS Penguins 2006-2007, and Binghamton Senators 2007-2009).  But Carkner's humble beginnings were in the OHL with the Peterborough Petes for four seasons from 1997-2001 earning the OHL "Most Improved Player" award in 1998-1999.

He was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in the 2nd round of the 1999 NHL Entry Draft (58th overall), was signed by the San Jose Sharks in 2001 then with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2006 (winning the AHL Yanick Dupre Memorial Award - a "man of the year" award for service to his local community as chosen by the league president) then finally signed with the Ottawa Senators in July 2007.

HOTNESS FACTOR:
Carkner is a pretty big boy (SOLID) at 6'4, 231 pounds ... NICE!!  And just look at him ... he's oh, SO "pretty!"  He puts you in mind of a cross between Ryan Malone and [uh oh, Kena!] Brenden Morrow ... a TALLER Brenden Morrow ; P

And if a guy who won't shy away from dropping the gloves is your idea of sexy then Carkner is one of the sexiest ... in the 2009-2010 season alone he had a total of 24 fights (a career high throughout OHL, AHL, and NHL!)!!  And he's a pretty heavy-hitter that seeks out other heavy-hitters to throw down with who include the likes of Parros, Brashear, and Orr among others!!  At first, it looks like he's a southpaw; however, the more fights I watch of his, he's a completely ambidextrous fighter and can hit his opponent from either side!!  Take a look for yourself - its pretty kick-ass (and pretty good strategy ... when one arm gets tired, he starts hitting with the other!)!!



Carkner and his wife, Kary, along with their two boys Chase (age 4) and Corbin (age 2) made Ottawa their home after he signed with the Sens this past October.  Prior to that, the Carkner family resided two hours away in Westport, Ontario.

FUN FACTS:
  • Carkner is a third cousin of former NHL defenseman Terry Carkner.
  • His father, Dennis, owns and operates "D's Collision Centre" in Winchester, Ontario
  • He, too, enjoys the movie "Slap Shot;" when asked by Goonblog.com how many times he's seen it, he answered, "too many" (a man after my own heart - LOVE that movie!)
  • FAVORITES:
    • rock band - Tragically Hip
    • movie(s) - The Hangover, Old School, The Shawshank Redemption
    • athlete - Tiger Woods
    • meal - chicken parmigiana
    • TV show - Lost
    • holiday destination - anywhere tropical

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Condolences

I was watching the Blackhawks / Sharks game during which Mike Emerick announced that Ray Shero's mother had passed away today, so I'd like to extend my deepest sympathy to the entire Shero family.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Follow / Friend Me on Twitter & FB!!

I could really use more fellow Pens fans as friends on Facebook and following me on Twitter (I miss Penguins hockey already and would really enjoy talking hockey with all of you!!)!!!

So if you haven't already done so,

FRIEND ME on Facebook!!
(please mention "Pens" in the request)

Friday, May 14, 2010

Where My Ladies At?

THESE ARE OUR STORIES
(How I Became a [Female] Hockey Fan)!
So my dad was always a big sports fan in general. I adored baseball and football, and still do, but hockey honestly wasn't my thing. I watched some games before, but I just never found it interesting and around the beginning of last season things started to change. My dad was watching games and I couldn't help but get interested too. And before you know I was yelling at the tv along with him. Ever since then I have been a HUGE Montreal Canadiens fan, and in love with Carey Price <3 A friend of mine actually got me addicted to the Pens as well and they are actually another favorite team, and I was so proud when Sid got to hoist that cup! Especially after the finals they suffered the year before. Now, hockey is a big part of my life, and I can barely go a day without at least watching a game of either teams, especially saturday nights. Hope it wasn't too boring and thanks for letting me share!
Julia,
PEI, Canada
Like many female fans, Julia is not alone in the fact that her father's love of sports and sudden interest in hockey sparked an interest that will likely last a lifetime and thats an amazing thing!  THANKS for telling us how you got to be such a big hockey fan, Julia!!  Even though the wounds are still fresh from the Pens season-ending loss to the Habs, I still have a lot of respect for any fan who sticks by their team (even if its a team other than the Pens)!! 

Don't forget, if you wish to submit your story, I kindly ask that you
email them directly to me so they don't end up being repetitive for some of the readers. Also, if you don't want me to include your name, please let me know that as well (what I'll normally do is put your first name and last initial if I have it OR just your screen name).

FEEL FREE TO INCLUDE A PICTURE!!


I also want to let you know I LOVE these stories (and so do alot of our readers) - I've always found it interesting no matter who the fan, so I'm enjoying ALL OF THIS IMMENSELY!! KEEP THEM COMING, but I ask that you
email them please - THANKS!!!

Also, I ask that you please BE PATIENT as I'm still receiving TONS of stories (they'll be posted in the order I received them, to be fair). If you sent in a story, it will eventually be on the blog - I promise!! ; ) JUST BE SURE TO KEEP THEM COMING (the more the better!)!! AS A NOTE, I'm currently on stories I received back in November 2009!!!


thesteelcitysportsfan@gmail.com

Crosby Moving Out on His Own??

For whatever reason, Crosby's living arrangements have always been a topic of interest to alot of fans (perhaps moreso of the female fans).  In fact, the following tidbit (its not even a long enough "blurb" to be considered a story) has been picked up by TSN.

Yesterday, the PPG reported that Sid has purchased a house after years of searching for "the right place" (which was always his answer when asked when / if he would be moving out of the Lemieux's residence).  However, it seems as though he doesn't wan't to make too big of a move as the newly purchased home is close to his former landlord.

Another Reason We Stick By the Pens ...


Thursday, May 13, 2010

When you fall down on the journey up the mountain, the disappointment of not making it to the top makes it difficult to appreciate just how far you have gotten.
Penguins Webpage (05/12/2010)


REASON #71
He's a Gracious "Loser"
(even when it hurts!)!!!

This pic exemplifies Sid and the Penguins as a team.  THANKS for a great season, Sid / Pens and for all the Mellon memories!!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Get PUMPED for Tonight's Game, People!!!

THANKS to Benson and the guys over at Benstonium for this amazing piece of artistic video paying tribute to the 2010 Penguins and Mellon Arena!!

If it doesn't give you chills, YOU'RE NOT A PENS FAN (or you have no emotion at all!)!!!!!

LET'S GO PENS!!!


Western Conference Hottie: Jimmy Howard (Detroit Red Wings)

Well, since I'm stuck in the dead time zone, of working till the wee hours of the night. I must admit, as an obvious hockey addict, I've watched FAR more of the Guppies and Devils spawn than I've ever willingly watched in my life. I mean, I seriously don't know who to root for (or against as the case may be). As soon as someone makes a save or gets a goal, I start questioning myself, with well, did I really want that to happen? Well in the midst of this moral delima (as I really would prefer neither of these teams advanced, and BOTH of the other teams (VAN and CHI) could advance.) I did notice this ADORABLE!!!! [and I mean REALLY adorable] Little rookie goalie for the wings.

IMPORTANT HOCKEY STUFF: He was tearing them up in the playoffs for a little while. And enough so, that now that it got tough with going against the Guppies, Coach Babcock gave him the vote of confidence, that "he got us here, so he's staying in net." Sounds like someone believes in the guy. (We'll know more on Wed, when this is posted.)

He was drafted in the 2nd round of the 2003 Draft by the Red Wings. During his three seasons with the Black Bears, Howard set team and league records.

Beginning with the 05/06 season, Howard began his career in the AHL with the Grand Rapids Griffins where he was occasionally called up to play for the Red Wings. Howard's inaugural season in the AHL became what is still one of his best in professional ice hockey. During this season he set many personal records as well as franchise records, including being the first Griffin named to the AHL's All-Rookie Team and helping establish the Griffins franchise win streak record of 12. He was in net for the Red Wings four times in the 05/06 season posting a 1-2-0 record, a GAA of 2.99 and a save percentage of .904. In the 07/08 season during the month of February, Howard was in net for the Red Wings an additional four times, and called up once during the 08–09 season, bringing his total NHL games played to 9. Howard only played four games in the 2007–08 regular season and therefore did not qualify to have his name engraved on the cup. However, he was included in the 2008 Detroit Red Wings Stanley Cup picture, given the Cup for a day, and awarded a Stanley Cup ring by the Red Wings' management. With the retirement of Red Wings goaltender Dominik Hasek in June 2008, Howard was expected to compete with Ty Conklin for the position beside Chris Osgood for the 2008–09 NHL season.

Howard's roster spot on the Devils Spawn turned official during 2009 off-season when Detroit did not offer Conklin a new contract, (I'm not sure why he had one to begin with) instead electing to promote Howard to Osgood's full time backup. He recorded his first win of the 2009-10 NHL Season on October 27 in relief of Chris Osgood against the Vancouver Canucks, making 20 saves. On December 17, 2009, Howard recorded his first career shutout in a 3-0 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. Jimmy Howard won the starting position in mid-season and kept the role until the end of the season. Jimmy Howard finished the 2009-10 season with excellent stats, ranking him in the top 5 in GAA and Save %, and finishing with a 37-15-10 record and a nomination for the Calder Trophy for Rookie of the Year. Howard gained more fame in the March 22, 2010 game against the defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins when he put his glove in Penguins captain Sidney Crosby's face after he repeatedly cross-checked Howard's teammate Henrik Zetterberg. [Yes, I KNOW, but the purpose of this post is to LOOK at him!!!!!!] On April 14, 2010, Howard played in his first NHL playoff game, a 3-2 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes. On April 20, he recorded his first career playoff shutout, making 29 saves in a 3-0 win over the Coyotes.

REALLY IMPORTANT STUFF: If you like sensative men, he's probably for you. Check out this video from the Devils Spawn website. (Just skip forward to 1:28, unless for some reason you like looking at Ville Leino...) He's trying hard to cover it, but it looks to me, like he gets mushy at a lot of movies. (IE: I think he had trouble deciding on one to admit to, aren't guys so cute when they do that.)


Also super cute is this video. Wherein he recounts getting his first goalie mask. Oh, and I will guiltily admit to watching several of his post game interviews, just to look at his shoulders in a t-shirt. Mmmm, yummy. One of my favorite things, men in t-shirts... well, and out of them...

6'0 (goalie = flexable) 210 lbs (goalie = flexible) um, yes, he's a solid (goalie = flexible) chunk of hockey player. Blond [hush Stephanie, yes, I fall for all of them.] Baby blues. Did I mention he's a goalie, and likely quite flexible? I'm not even going to help you ladies with your imagination there, since I'm sure you can all handle that quiet well, and... well... I think most of the things in my imagination would frighten small children...

Friday, May 7, 2010

Where My Ladies At?

THESE ARE OUR STORIES
(How I Became a [Female] Hockey Fan)!
I've loved hockey since I was a little girl. I'd sit on my couch and watch Mario and Jager play.
For a little while I lost interest...the penz weren't doin' so well, but when Mario returned, I was all pumped up again! Then, Crosby came. My dad always says, "Lauren, you're going to have a hard time having me let you go-out with or marry any guy...except Sidney Crosby-he has a free pass!" I laughed, but thought hmmm...
After a while of watching interviews and reading up on this hot hockey dude, I realized 1) he has great character 2) he's really mature 3) he's really funny 4) he has the cutest personality 5) he's pretty hot And I would count it the highest honor to go-out with him. And whoever ends up marrying him should thank her lucky stars that she found such a great guy.

Yeah, I love hockey and I love the players on the ice too and someday, I'm going to meet them-and let destiny choose my fate.

Lauren D.
I don't know, Lauren, but I think you're going to have to stand in a long line of girls who have the same dream as you do to meet them "and let destiny choose" your fate, but here's to hoping you (and all the other girls) get that chance!!!  And its nice that your dad already gave you (him) a free pass.  We have a few things in common with watching Lemieux and Jagr and taking an interest in Sid ... so THANKS for sharing your story, Lauren!! : )

Don't forget, if you wish to submit your story, I kindly ask that you
email them directly to me so they don't end up being repetitive for some of the readers. Also, if you don't want me to include your name, please let me know that as well (what I'll normally do is put your first name and last initial if I have it OR just your screen name).

FEEL FREE TO INCLUDE A PICTURE!!

I also want to let you know I LOVE these stories (and so do alot of our readers) - I've always found it interesting no matter who the fan, so I'm enjoying ALL OF THIS IMMENSELY!! KEEP THEM COMING, but I ask that you
email them please - THANKS!!!

Also, I ask that you please BE PATIENT as I'm still receiving TONS of stories (they'll be posted in the order I received them, to be fair). If you sent in a story, it will eventually be on the blog - I promise!! ; ) JUST BE SURE TO KEEP THEM COMING (the more the better!)!! AS A NOTE, I'm currently on stories I received back in November 2009!!!


thesteelcitysportsfan@gmail.com

Bell Mobile Magazine features Sidney Crosby

Yesterday's new "How Do I Love Thee" graphic got such a positive response (and many of you asking for the picture "without the words") that I decided to do a little post that I had wanted to do back when the picture showed up (in February around the Olympics), but never got around to doing!

The picture is from the digital "2010 Winter Games" edition of Bell Mobile Magazine (Canada) and there are actually a few good pics of Crosby!!  SO YOU'RE ALL IN FOR A TREAT!! ; )

Bell was a "Premiere National Partner and the exclusive Telecommunications provider" of the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, so they had the digital magazine feature a few of the Canadian Olympic athletes including Sidney Crosby!!

Back in March, Crosby announced that he would donate his gold medal winnings to "The Sidney Crosby Foundation" which he started in 2009 to benefit childrens charities in his home province of Nova Scotia.  Bell matched his $20,000 donation.


Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Sid Pic

OK, ladies ... since the new "How Do I Love Thee" graphic has stirred up a bit of interest, I've decided to do a special post about it FOR TOMORROW (and it will include a link to where you can get / save the photo WITHOUT THE WORDS!)!!!  So please be patient and I PROMISE it will be worth the wait!!!

The reason I'm doing a post is because its from a site that I had previously planned on doing a post about (back in FEBRUARY!) but never got around to doing it and since you guys are so interested, I figure you'd be interested in the entire site where I found the picture!!

So stay tuned and BE SURE TO CHECK OUT HftL TOMORROW!!! ; )

The picture in this post is from the ORIGINAL Charlie and the Chocolate Factory of Veruca Salt ("but I want it NOW!")

Honestly, this picture is reason enough (don't you think?!)!!
REASON #70
He Takes His Job Seriously
(on AND off the ice!)!!!

So my good friend, Maureen, sent me this article about Sid because she knows how badly I have it for the guy ... it was a great article!!  THANKS, Maureen!!! ; )

The article talks about how Sid gives thought and reacts perfectly to questions / during interviews or even in the locker room as well as conducting himself in situations "off the job / ice" and just gives a few specific examples in stories given by a few of the people who come in contact / work with him regularly which are nothing less than AMAZING!!!
[Penguins President David] Morehouse has served as an adviser to Al Gore, John Kerry and Bill Clinton. So after the Penguins drafted Crosby, Morehouse immediately went into campaign mode, asking team communications VP Tom McMillan to find a media coach for the new star. Then Morehouse returned to his office and saw Crosby doing an interview on TV. He called McMillan back. “Forget it,” he said. “Don’t let anyone talk to him. He’s a natural. He’s pitch perfect.”
This reason could actually count as TWO REASONS for the simple fact this article makes him seem "superhuman!"

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

That's So MAF (the musings of a Penguins goalie) -- NEW "History Will Be Made" Commercial

I can't embed the video on my blog right now because I'm at work (and the party-poopers restrict video, etc.!), so I'm posting the link to the Penguins webpage (AND I'll have to wait to watch it until I get home!)!!


Western Conference Hottie: Matthew Lombardi (Phoenix Coyotes)

And I SO hoped the Coyotes would take the devils spawn (Red Wings) out of the playoffs. Now it's up to the guppies (Sharks). Which is not the best folks to have to pin our hopes of eliminating our nemesis from the playoffs, considering the guppies usual choke-tacular playoff performances. Oh well, by the time you all read this, we'll likely know which way it went this season.

IMPORTANT HOCKEY STUFF: He played hockey for the LaPresqu'ile minor hockey association before playing junior hockey for the Victoriaville Tigres in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) for four years before. Lombardi was selected in the 2000 Draft 215th overall by the Edmonton Oilers. Lombardi failed to sign with the Oilers, re-entering the draft where he was picked 90th overall by the Calgary Flames in the 2002 Draft. His style of play is one of speed and agility, often leading the rush with his great speed and finesse.

Lombardi played in the 2004 Stanley Cup Playoffs, during which he suffered a vicious elbow to the head from Red Wings defenseman Derian Hatcher and was unable to play for several months. The Flames eventually lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game Seven of the Stanley Cup Finals. During the locked-out 2004–05 season, he played for the Flames affiliate Lowell Lock Monsters in the AHL, after he recovered fully from the elbow, returning to the NHL and the Flames when the league resumed play in 2005–06.

He was a member of the 2007 Canadian IIHF World Championship team that won gold in a 4–2 win against Finland in Moscow. During the tournament he scored six goals and had six assists for 12 points, and led the Canada for most points. He also has a wife, Joannie, and a daughter, Rosalie. He also has an Italian heritage.

On March 4, 2009, he was traded along with Brandon Prust and a 1st round draft pick to the Phoenix Coyotes for Olli Jokinen.

On February 8, 2010, he recorded a five point night in a 6-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers.

REALLY IMPORTANT STUFF:  Here we have one, that all you Crosby-junkies will like (hopefully). One Mr. Matthew Lombardi (even his name sounds sexy, think about how it feels coming off your tongue. Then stop right there before continuing your wild [tongue-filled] fantasies and read the rest of this post). He was born in Montreal and was raised in Hudson, Quebec. Although, he has no accent to speak of. (sorry to disappoint you.) He's a former (and now returned to current) Line mate of Shane Doan [Previously on HftL, and also on HftL (and who's dimples are deadly)]. In my opinion, he made major contributions to the Coyotes (short thought it might be) playoff run [yes, I was VERY sad to see them go.)

I'll just simply leave you with these videos. (I think they speak, better than any words I could type, anyway.)

First of all, lets meet him...



Then lets find out some of his favorite things.



And last but not least, lets just keep listening to him talk.



One final question, ladies... Am I the only one who could listen to his voice forever?