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Hockey Banter, Week XI: Where Has The Hockey Gone?

As the last Banter before the break, we spend some time grumbling about the Providence tie and get ready for #GaudreauingGoesGlobal

This is the only hockey we have between now and #York925
This is the only hockey we have between now and #York925
Richard Wolowicz

Joseph Gravellese: It just stinks having to stew on this one for three weeks. Nine seconds away from history, in front of a sizeable BC contingent in Providence, only to have it snatched away, with history relegated to (hopefully) a sparsely-attended game against Alabama-Huntsville in Minnesota. It was about as disappointed as I'd been after a BC game in a long, long time. And I know that makes me a spoiled fan, but whatever.

Having NOTHING to dilute the disappointment has sucked. No other college games happening. No women's game. No NHL...@!%#@$@#$@. Just three weeks for the hockey-part of my brain to be focusing on what we missed out on seeing. God damnit.

Grant Salzano: I was watching from home and was on the edge of my seat for the big moment. Then the goal, and the overtime, and the post-game reaction.

My twitter feed was NSFW.

JG: Yeah, it was just heartbreaking. And frustrating too, because that whole game-tying goal played out in horrifying slow motion. First BC had a chance to bury an empty netter. Then Providence almost passed it into their own net but recovered. Then in a blink of an eye they were rushing up ice with numbers, Alber fell over trying to cover the guy coming into the zone, and he had a wide open path toward the net... the rest is (denial-of-) history.

A nice GoodJobGoodEffort to Providence, though. Since I bought tickets to that game I've been getting emails from them incessantly (I haven't taken the initiative yet to remove myself from their listserv)... including one trumpeting "PROVIDENCE TIES BOSTON COLLEGE 3-3...IN FRONT OF A SOLD OUT CROWD!!!"

I wonder if they made t-shirts for it.

GS: They should make a banner. That would immediately give them more banners than UNH, if my math is correct.

JG: All kidding aside, Providence looked really good. If it weren't for a stellar Milner performance the Friars might have been up by a couple of goals after the first period. Bad night for BC.

I'll chalk it up to suffering an injury to MacLeod early and rolling 5 D most of the game, plus Gaudreau suffering from the flu.

GS: I didn't know Gaudreau had the flu. The dude gets sick and has a two point game? Naturally.

Honestly most teams look pretty decent when playing BC. It's not hard to get up to play the best team in the country. Everyone is amped.

JG: It's funny, people were saying on T3h Intern3ts that he was invisible and had a bad game. I guess the expectations for him are through the roof at this point.

Speaking of Milner and Providence, by the way - I know it's dumb to tar a fanbase with one idiot's comments, so I'm not commenting on Providence fans as a whole here. BUT... I have to share a stroke of genius I heard from a 40something Providence fan in front of me on Friday night.

GS: I'm excited.

JG: BC students were chanting Milner's name after a save, and the dude goes "Yeah, keep cheering for him. He's so great that he got benched last year."

After I picked my jaw up from the floor I asked him if he realized Milner proceeded to win 19 straight games and the national championship thereafter. His response: "Did he, or did he not, get benched for sucking?"

It was a pretty impressive display of stupidity, so I reminded him as such by shouting out at various points "Tom Brady sucks, he was once Drew Bledsoe's backup;" "Take away Tim Thomas's Stanley Cup ring, since he got benched for Tuukka in 2010," and various other similar comments. (Sorry to the rest of my Section OO brethren, haha.)

GS: You sound like me.

I'm proud.

JG: Yeah I can only imagine what that situation would've been like if you were there. It was highly amusing.

GS: I would have crossed the line probably. I miss those days.

JG: Most of the people I talked to down there were great, and we had it on good authority that Providence College was planning a ceremony for York on-ice if BC won. PC is a classy lot. Wish we could've freaking won.

GS: So what the hell do we do now?

JG: Now... we wait.

And wait, and wait.

And occasionally look up flights to Minneapolis, only to be reminded that it's a bad idea.

GS: Not *quite* as bad an idea when you realize that the record breaking game against Alabama-Huntsville will not have video anywhere, TV or otherwise.

That is just ridiculous.

JG: Yah, hopefully that problem gets rectified, because...ugh.

We did get some good news this week - The Kid says Destry Straight is likely to be back for the Mariucci Classic. At this point I take The Kid's scoops as gospel. Having Straight back changes the whole picture for that tournament.

GS: Having Straight back is important but losing Gaudreau is going to leave a gaping hole in the offense. I'm concerned about getting the two point conversion against Hunstville.

JG: Gaudreau's departure reminds me, we aren't entirely hockeyless until the Mariucci Classic. World Juniors starts on December 26. America!

Gaudreau is at USA World Jr. camp now, and is a virtual lock to be ultimately selected.

GS: I'm going to try desperately hard to get wicked into World Juniors again, but something tells me when games start at like 6am or whatever I'm going to roll over, smack the snooze button, and go back to sleep.

But then again, that's what DVRs are for.

.....And what Twitter is not for... grumble.

JG: See, I love World Juniors. It's one of the times when I feel okay being jingoistic. WOOOOO!

I'll definitely be up for the games. I actually already told my boss I'd be coming in late the morning of the US-Russia game.

GS: #GaudreauingGoesGlobal

JG: I think having been in Canada during the WJC in '09 made me catch the fever.

GS: Oh the memories from that trip...

JG: Do you have any other coherent thoughts from the Providence game?

GS: I don't think they'll make it through the BCI censors.

JG: I was too despondent to really come up with anything analytical, aside from how much less punchy we look when Gaudreau is less than brilliant, and how good Providence looked when they stepped up the physical game.

GS: I don't think we looked less 'punchy' because Gaudreau wasn't 100%. I think we looked less 'punchy' because Providence took it to us.

JG: As I've said a few times in this space, establishing the physical game is the key to beating us. It was a great physical performance from Providence. Good, clean hitting from the get-go.

GS: Sometimes it's hard for me to remember that PC is a decent team. I think I projected them getting home ice at the beginning of the year.

JG: A lot of people did. They may well be the class of that second pack. Behind the new Big 3. Sorry, Maine.

GS: I have nothing bad to say about how the Friars played. Great, great physical game. There was a penalty called on them at one point for, I think, charging, and it was ridiculous. It was the kind of penalty call that has the potential to ruin the sport.

It was a FANTASTIC hit.

JG: A fantastic hit, a fantastic game. Just really exciting, physical hockey, the way you like to see the game played. I just wish we'd come out on top. C'est la vie.

Taking a quick spin around Hockey East last weekend...

HAHA BU played two games and got two more embellishment penalties. Four games in a row for them! Less amusing to me is the fact that they won both games, including one @ UNH.

GS: Taking two out of three from them is starting to look excellent. And our win against Notre Dame might be even better.

Any predictions for this weekend's Hockey East games?

JG: There's nothing, right? BC plays UNH in shootyhoop...

GS: *Looks*

Apparently Vermont goes up to Appleton Arena in St. Lawrence for an exciting matchup sure to bring out the crowds.

That makes me laugh, because we've been there before.

Then our friend got pulled over by border patrol on the way home LOL

Now he's in the military somewhere overseas being awesome. I think that counts as trolling.

JG: I'll say St. Lawrence continues the ECAC run of non-conference success and edges out Vermont at their wooden-bleachered paradise.

GS: It is a pretty nice arena, isn't it? Very "ECAC." I say St. Lawrence wins because LOL VERMONT


JG: Anything else worth commenting on this week?

I think everyone knows our opinion on the Frozen Fenway nonsense.

GS: I'll sum it up:

1) The first Frozen Fenway was kind of cool and had some novelty to it.
2) We're tired of losing a home game for it now that said novelty has worn off.
3) We would prefer not to do it again.

JG: Succintly put.

Also 4) this is just reminding me about the whole Notre Dame joining the conference thing. Wahhh.

GS: Let's not go there, it brings up a rant, and I'm too tired to rant.

JG: Reasonable.

GS: I'm really annoyed that Notre Dame was invited to Hockey East.

JG: I think that pretty much covers it for this week. Forthcoming hockey CONTENT during the break: A discussion of how to best work the NCAA tournament.... a Banter focused on recapping BC women's hockey's first half and looking ahead to the second... and coverage of #GaudreauGoingGlobal at the World Juniors.


PS BC is going to rickroll UNH on the squeakycourt. Go Eagles.

JG: Huzzah.