Puck drops: Too many goals, three fights in four seconds and a UFO.

Some random hockey threads that I’ve stumbled across in the past few weeks:


An awesome timelapse of the Joe Louis Arena rink being established. Auto show venue to Red Wings’ home ice in just 48 hours, when the lockout ended.

How awesome is this shot, by the Detroit News, from Wings v Canucks this week?

How awesome is this shot, by the Detroit News, from Wings v Canucks this week?


If you think it’s bizarre that we play hockey when it’s a blazing Australian summer outside the rink, spare a thought for the poor desert-based kid who gave up a shot per minute, playing for the United Arab Emirates. (Well found, Jay Hellis, or Dan Dixon, or Puck Podcast, or some guy named Joe, or whoever else originally dug out this story.)


What’s the most goals ever given up in a hockey game?

The rollercoaster that is the Detroit Red Wings season continued on Monday, our time, with an 8-3 smashing of the Canucks, which was very sweet indeed. It’s not often the Wings score 8, especially with our disjointed sum-of-parts line-up at the moment, as injuries continue to ravage the Wings in the lock-out shortened season.

The worst I could find, in terms of number of goals allowed, just to make Alexander Medearis feel better, was the Bulgarian women’s team being smashed 82-0 against Slovakia in a 2010 Winter Olympic qualification game. There are unsubstantiated reported of Thailand beating South Korean, 92-0, in 1988, but I’m not sure that’s accurate.

The Bulgarian horror story in the women’s 2010 Olympic qualifiers definitely happened, however. The Slovakians had led 31-0 at the end of the first period, which is ugly by most definitions, and clearly didn’t feel any need to go easy from there.

Bulgaria had already lost 41-0 to Italy and then 39-0 to Latvia, before the 82-0 demolition. It celebrated the end of the tournament with a morale-boosting 30-1 loss to Croatia.

To add some context, that Bulgarian women’s team surrendered more goals in that one tournament than my Red Wings did in the entire NHL season the same year. Ouch.

Dan Cleary misunderstands the term "crash the net". Pic: Detroit News.

Dan Cleary misunderstands the term “crash the net”. Pic: Detroit News.

But I also like the writer of the account for pointing out: “(Bulgarian) goalie Liubomira Shosheva’s amazing 57-save performance. Considering, you know, she faced 134 shots in 56 minutes.”

In the NHL, the most goals scored in a game is apparently 21, and it’s happened twice. According to Wiki Answers, on Jan.10, 1920, Montreal defeated the Toronto St. Patricks 14-7. On Dec. 11, 1985, the Oilers just edged the Blackhawks 12-9.

And just in case you thought the Canadiens’ effort was some kind of fluke, the team also scored an NHL record 16 goals, in beating the poor Quebec Bulldogs 16-3 on March 3, in the same 1920 season.


Of course, hockey is about more than remorseless goal-scoring. Which brought me to this game, between the Boston Bruins and the Dallas Stars. Three separate fights in the first four seconds. Then two goals in 45 seconds, once they finally decided to actually, you know, chase a puck.

The commentator is great: “Thirty-five seconds in. Three fights and a goal! Are you having fun yet?”


This has nothing to do with hockey but is bloody funny. Good cartoon too.

And yes, those reading from outside Australia, this kind of shit happens around here.

In fact, if you don’t believe me, here is another golden Australian dickheads-drive-cars-too moment caught on camera. This endlessly hot summer is starting to mess with everybody’s minds.

Roll With It - in bookshops from Friday.

Roll With It – in bookshops from Friday.

GRATUITOUS PLUG: Yes, my long-awaited comedy/crime novel hits the shelves later this week. It’s called “Roll With It” and is A LOT different to my earlier kids’ books, in case any unwary parents think: “Oh, wow, a new Nick Place book.” Step away, kiddos! Having said that, the more copies I can sell, the more likely that the publishers will demand a sequel and even turn the adventures of Tony “Rocket” Laver into a series. Just saying …

Things I don’t understand

Why am I Derek Zoolander in the air as well as on the ice?

At Lorne, on Sunday morning, I took to a trampoline for the first time in a long time.

When I was a kid, if I may say so, I used to be kind of a big deal when it came to trampolining. Actually, we pretty much all were, as the local Lorne ‘tramps’ were the only entertainment apart from the Games Room (I was also a gun – ask my boys about Galaga, even now), and riding bikes around. Oh yeah, and endless surfing. And later, drinking sneaky cider on the beach at night. Plus, oh my god, the discovery of girls.

But I digress.

Flying on a Sunday. Pic: Chloe.

Trampolines … I wasted many summers and slow weekends working on somersaults and backward baranis, among other tricks, not to mention mastering bounceball, which is basically one-on-one, or two-on-two volleyball on a single trampoline. It was all fun until my mate, Bill, broke his leg.

Anyway, on Sunday, now older and less supple, I took to the sky and it was so much fun …. But here’s the thing, and the tenuous hockey link. I was bouncing high and spinning 360s, and realized that while it was effortless to turn left, spinning a full 360 to land facing the same way, it was difficult to turn right and do the same thing. Just like on the ice, where I can pivot, crossover, (mostly) hockey stop and do other moves to the left, but struggle when turning to the right. What the actual fuck? I am turn-right challenged beyond ice-skating? I am Zoolander. “Papa, I got the lung …” *koff

How there can still be such blatant racism in the world?

I mean, seriously. You kidding?

In Game 7 of the first round play-offs series between the Bruins and the Capitals, it was Washington’s Joel Ward who snared the goal to win the game and the series. A huge moment for a Canadian with parents from Barbados. As the Detroit Free Press reported, racist tweets were flying around the virtualsphere within seconds, up to and including: “That (n-word) deserves to hang.”

I don’t even know where to start. I mean, for fuck’s sake. It’s 2012. This is hockey. This is the western modern world. This is a supposedly evolved species.

Get it together, whichever cock-with-ears wrote that shit. That is all.

How will I ever get better as a skater if I only skate once a week?

Actually, you know and I know the answer to that. I won’t.

I know only too well that I have to keep putting in general skating sessions and other between-class time on skates, whether inline or ice. Other Ice Rookies are putting in endless hours and their skating is brilliant for it. I haven’t got there enough.

The last couple of weeks have been intense and I’ve only made it to class/dev league on a Wednesday night. Already, I can feel my always sketchy skating getting sketchier by the minute. There is no way I am remotely a good enough skater to take shortcuts.

So boot to arse. Get on it, Place.

Why do people who fancy themselves as NHL-standard skaters do Intro hockey classes?

Is it pure smugness? Are they Icehouse plants to test the resolve and heart of true L-plate hockey skaters? Weird.

Why is a smart, genuine woman like Julia Gillard making such a hash of being Prime Minister?

Ah, screw it. Politics … no place for it here. Depressing, though.

Why is there a Feature Ornamental T-Rex outside the Icehouse?

Oh, that’s right: it’s the Docklands. Outside of the haven that is the Icehouse itself, we’re talking about a soulless wasteland. Why wouldn’t you plonk a Feature Ornamental T-Rex across Pearl River Road?

The Docklands’ Feature Ornamental T-Rex. Why ask why?

(I remember when we had just started skating, early last year, Big Cat Place – then only a Kitten – discovered this T-Rex in a car park, behind a big fence. Peered through the fence as we were aimlessly wandering the wasteland and said, ‘Hey, a dinosaur.’ As you do. It’s good to see Rexxy is now front and centre.)

Sportswatch: The Melbourne Ice men’s team kicked off their season on the weekend. Thriller on Saturday against the Mustangs, which I missed because I was down the coast, and a more routine 5-2 win over Canberra on Sunday, which I made most of. Go, Ice, go.

And rub some of that winning magic off on the Richmond Tigers who could be 3-2 and have beaten Geelong and West Coast, but are instead 1-4 after two heroic, narrow losses. Sigh. Deep sigh.

And I continue to sweat on Detroit, wondering what the fall-out of the late season fade will be?

Maybe the Joe Louis Arena needs a Feature Ornamental T-Rex out the front, for luck? It’s working for the Ice …