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(The above poster is prominently featured on a bulletin board in my office. It's uh... on "permanent loan" from the Robin's Donuts' collection of Marathon, Ontario.)

Ugh...I have a bloody headache (largely from battling with my Yahoo! mail, which continues to go AWOL whenever the mood suits it -- I'm still receiving contact via Carrier pigeon, so try that for now). Where do we begin to tackle the unprecedented crap of the past six days? Common sense dictates to begin with the positive. Alrighty then.

Well, credit to the Sens for scoring up backup goaltender (and good Lakehead Boy) Alex Auld (see bottom left corner of photo). It wasn't a flashy signing, but Auld is big, under 30, inexpensive (the contract covers two years, for $2 million) and fairly consistent. Colour us biased, but it's about time the club picked up a player raised on Persians and Bare Point water, especially after they decided to pass on this guy in '05. For what it's worth, the Senators now have two bald goaltenders. That's got to count for something.

Local media have already attempted to flash their Lakehead knowledge at Auld -- during one interview where the backstopper was speaking to media while purchasing groceries, Auld was asked if he was at "Intercity" (the media member then made mention of spending previous time in the Bay). There's no grocery store in the mall, rook. Auld then stated that he was off to camp, which begins us to another point...

Dude is going to need a nickname -- for now, we're thinking we should name him after whichever lake his camp is located on (and I'm not talking about where he's pitching a tent, Mensas -- see the Lexicon of Yore for clarification). I'll be turning to my trusty sources to pull the info, but expect that Auld could soon be referred to as "Hawkeye", "Loon", "Dog", "Oliver" or "Mirror".

(Wait...that last one would've been more appropriate for the departing guy, right? Damnit, I said I was going to let that go.)


Other things we enjoyed...

Marian Hossa's deal is freaking brilliant. I don't understand the "traitor" remarks from some -- he was a rental in Pittsburgh, plain and simple. He goes to an elite team, and both sides understand why he's there: To win the Cup. If Detroit doesn't pull it off, they're not committed to him -- Marian walks. And if this last week has taught us anything, it's that a player can tumble, falter -- hell, fall flat on his face -- and still cash in. Hossa can do jack (expletive), and still end up as an 8-million dollar player in 2009-10. If he helps bring another championship back to Detroit, 10 million isn't out of the realm of possibility. In fact, it's practically a given.

Here's something else Hossa-related: Did anyone else enjoy Peter Chiarelli's epic little freakout when it became obvious that the Bruins were out of the running for the Slovak, and decided to throw cash at Michael Ryder instead? Ryder's most memorable moments of late either involve being benched or not dressing at all for playoff games (he played in only four games with Montreal during last year's postseason). Combine that fact with 31 points in 70 games last season, and that's somehow worth $12 million over three years? Enjoy, Boston.

(It's worth noting that Bruins' coach Claude Julien has handled Ryder through nearly every stage of his career, and in speaking with sources close to the coach, it's obvious that Julien thinks very highly of him -- hence the signing. However, Chiarelli is still the guy holding the manpurse strings, and he obviously let them fly right open on this deal.)

Next up: "Why defencemen take one look at Ottawa and run in the other direction"


"Was I supposed to reference Redden's departure?"


"The rage unabated"

(Yeah, that'll do.)

More later.