Hockey Hilarity: Sergei SpongeBob Bobrovsky is really good

Friday funnies brought to you straight from hockey’s own players, media personnel, and broadcast botches. We’ll be mucking it up every week right here, examining puck ups, puns, tweets, and more! So, what’s funny this week in hockey is that the Philadelphia Flyers really stink and that their goaltending, aside  from the first couple of months from Ilya Bryzgalov has been pretty meh. Anyway, there was this kid, once upon a time, that they picked up. He was an unsigned youngster and he got thrown into the fire and had a pretty good year up until the playoffs. His name was Sergei …

Goalies have gotten huge - but will shrinking them 'fix' scoring? Courtesy Ottawa Sun.

Crashing the Crease: Will Smaller Pads Really “Fix” NHL Scoring?

With the league’s 30 General Managers meeting to discuss ways to tweak the NHL product, the issue of goal scoring totals has once again reared its head. Since the resumption of play from the cancelled 2004-05 season, scoring has slipped from 6.05 goals per game to 5.25 goals per game. Whether or not that is really a problem that needs fixing is an argument for another column, but the fixes being discussed are rather relevant to goalies. What is the solution? Well, according to some – including Mike Babcock — the answer is a simple ultimatum: bigger nets, or smaller …

Bryzgalov's had some difficulties in pulling off the poke check in the past.

Crashing the Crease: Bryz and the Art of the Poke Check

Tuesday night’s game at Madison Square Garden was quite possibly the single most glaring example of one of Bryzgalov’s greatest shortcomings: he is not particularly good at the poke check. Playing the poke check correctly is the epitome of a very fine line for any goaltender. A successful poke requires quick and decisive action: there is no time to spare in deciding to go for the poke, but at the same time it can’t be done too early – or “telegraphed” – lest the forward read it and simply walk around it. Against the Rangers, Bryzgalov’s poke attempts were telegraphed, …

Ilya Bryzgalov - Courtesy of Frenz Photography

Crashing the Crease: Bryzgalov’s Depth

After the first week of the season, Ilya Bryzgalov’s first report card had him pegged as playing well despite not getting results. His play since then has only continued to impress – if not improve altogether – and in lieu of the Flyers matching a season-high two game win streak with Bryzgalov’s back-to-back victories against Carolina and Tampa Bay, the results are starting to come. At one point a week ago, Ilya was holding onto the ignominious position of most losses among NHL goaltenders despite possessing a rather strong 2.40 GAA and .920 SV%. Since then? He’s gotten a couple …

Image courtesy of Tim Frenz, FrenzFotography.com

Crashing the Crease: Bryzgalov Solid, Despite Record

With the NHL’s 2013 Season finally underway, Crashing the Crease will evaluate the Flyers’ goaltending performances every Thursday in order to answer the inevitable dilemma in Flyerdom: what is going on in net? Week one has seen Ilya Bryzgalov play all three games of the Flyers’ 0-3 start, and the questions are already flying about just what is wrong with this team. For many, as is so often the story in Philadelphia, the finger pointing begins and ends with the goaltender. But is that fair? The easy answer would be to look at Bryzgalov’s stat line from the 3-1, 5-2, …

READ:123456