So for the first, say 40 minutes of boring-ass hockey that we were watching last night, the most interesting thing on the ice to me was the Rags' 85th anniversary logo at centre ice.
While some people are (rightly) pointing out that it's awfully strange to celebrate a team's 85th anniversary, I thought back to the Habs' 85th season and started comparing that edition of Nos Glorieux to the current one...
And once I realized that we are in 2011, not 2001 and that, therefore it wasn't the 1983-1984 Habs but rather the 1993-1994 Habs that would have been celebrating their 85th season (math eludes me, as always), well, I began to realize that there were some striking similarities and differences between the two squads.
Then: Gary Bettman was the new commissioner of the NHL.
Now: FML, he's still here.
Then: The conferences were re-named to the Eastern and Western conferences to avoid "confusion" according to Gary Bettman.
Now: See above re: Bettman. I still miss the Campbell and Wales conferences.
Then: The Habs were just coming off a year when they had won the Stanley Cup and were considered legitimate contenders for the Cup.
Now: Er, nevermind... Next question!
Then: The Rags were going to win the Cup that season after coming in first in the Eastern conference.
Now: Doubtful, unless you can get Messier to put down the chip bag and lace 'em up again.
Then: The Habs often relied on Patrick Roy to steal games for them (which he always managed to do), and Ron Tugnutt is his solid, if unspectacular, backup.
Now: The Habs always rely on Carey Price to steal games for them (which he often, but not always manages to do), and Alex Auld is his solid, with flashes of spectacular, backup.
Then: The Habs could rely on the offensive firepower of Kirk Muller (57 points, 23 goals), Brian Bellows (71 points, 33 goals) and Vincent Damphousse (91 points, 40 fucking goals!!) to put the puck in the net on a regular basis.
Now: The Habs could rely on the offensive firepower of... er... Well, not so much rely as trying to cope with the fact that the team's "scorers" seem to be hella inconsistent and streaky this year. (Seriously - WTF is up with that?? Pleky is stone cold, as was Squid before his "internal body" injury... while Gomez, ChickenDude and Cheese Whiz are lighting it up.)
Then: Even if the Habs didn't score first, they were always a threat to win the game.
Now: Whaddya know?? The Habs came from behind to win AGAIN last night! Be still my beating heart.
Then: Guy Carbonneau was the team captain and Jacques Demers was its coach.
Now: Guy Carbonneau was the team's coach and now he's a commentator on RDS, whereas Jacques Demers was a commentator on RDS... now he's also a fucking senator.
Then: Benoit Brunet always could be counted on to make at least one boneheaded move on the ice in each game.
Now: Benoit Brunet can be counted on to make at least one boneheaded comment per play in each game.
Then: The Ottawa Senators came in last in the eastern conference with 37 points.
Now: Yep, that seems about right.
Well, now that we've looked at the past, let's take a trip in a time machine with Doctor Emmett Gill and his short sidekick Marty Gionta (the height differences work with my theme, people... just go with it!), assume that the Mayans are wrong, and preview what tonight's game would look like, if it were to be played in the Pens' 85th season, that is, the 2052-2053 NHL season.
A relative concept, but it will be playing at 7:30 on RDS, channel 6,432 in your internal TV brain chip (i.e. the channel in-between the one that the Chinese government uses to control us, and the Food Network)
Circuits firing at full speed:
Jacques Martin's carefully preserved cranium still coaches the Habs from its fishbowl perch equipped with robot arms behind the bench (they signed him to a long term contract and STILL can't fire him without hefty penalties). His biggest dream finally came true this season - he now coaches a legion of programmable androids, and he has a direct link to their positronic brains, and is able to control their slightest movements with a blink of his eye. This has given him more time to work on his crossword puzzles behind the bench.
A recently acquired defensive robot with a Cheese-like orange tinge has 6 points in 5 games, and a robot called "Chicken" due to his unfortunate programmed tendency to cluck as he picks up speed is showing that he may not be destined for the scrap heap just yet.
After being moved to Helsinki from Pittsburgh following the city's controlled demolition as part of a global beautification project, the Pingviinis are still struggling to put together a win after the loss of their most valuable android. Unfortunately, their motivation/drive chips have been upgraded after a this string of losses and they will likely be a formidable opponent tonight.
The Habs? Well, here's hoping that their trainer techies had enough battery packs to help them recharge after yet another series of back-to-back games. The team's robots tend to go on pointless streaks on a fairly regular basis, due in part to the fact that the Martin-head forgets to blink on a regular basis.
In the Repair Bay:
Sidney Crosby's programmable android self has had to get sent to the shop in order to re-wire its cranium circuits.
While Michael Cammalleri III is one of the few remaining fully biological players in the game, his teammates have taken advantage of this fact by giving him this antiquated disease called "gastro", leading to a quarantine.
The Markov and Gorges robots are, tragically, on a shelf in the repair bay until the end of the season, due to a shortage in available replacement parts.
Is there intelligent life out there? :
Given the well-known scientific fact that Pennsylvanian sports fans were scientifically proven to represent a lower form of life (edited to add another recent occurrence of this phenomenon), all trace of their existence was wiped out in the mid 2030s. Pensblog is used as a model of what a dystopian, un-civilized society looks like. I therefore can't link to any Pens blogs in this preview.
Post-game biological interactions:
Hook your avatar up to another person's avatar and get BUSY, techie style... (SO NSFW, I FRIGGIN MEAN IT... So don't say I didn't warn you... Y'all wanted some porn, so there you go.)