Joe Dyton

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The GD Podcast: Episode 33

In Uncategorized on October 20, 2013 at 5:43 pm

By Joe Dyton

On the latest episode of The GD Podcast, Mike and Joe talk about Penn State’s upset win over Michigan and the Rams’ stunning win over the Houston Texans. The guys also preview Week 7 of the NFL and talk about the slow starts of the New York Rangers and Washington Capitals. Finally, Mike offers up a few beer suggestions in Mike’s Beer Blast.

You can listen to all of that and more here.

Joe Dyton and Mike Grant are co-hosts of The GD Podcast. You can follow them on Twitter @thegdpocast. You may also reach the guys via email at thegdpodcast@gmail.com. Find past episodes of the podcast here.

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The GD Podcast Episode 27

In Uncategorized on August 17, 2013 at 5:44 pm

By Joe Dyton

On the latest episode of The GD Podcast, Mike and I recap the PGA Championship, discuss the Biogenesis suspensions in Major League Baseball and talk a little NFL preseason. Later we talk about “True Blood”, “Ray Donovan”, “Dexter” and more in the Pop Culture Corner. Finally, Mike closes things out with “Mike’s Beer Blast”. You can listen to it all here.

Joe Dyton and Mike Grant are co-hosts of “The GD Podcast”, an informal, but insightful conversation about sports, pop culture beer and the like. They can be reached at thegdpodcast@gmail.com and on Twitter @thegdpodcast. You may also subscribe to The GD Podcast on iTunes.

“Grey’s Anatomy” recap: “The End is the Beginning is the End”

In Uncategorized on January 20, 2013 at 11:46 am

By Joe Dyton (@dyton99)

Sure, this week’s episode of “Grey’s” lasted an hour, but it all really comes down to the last minute when we found out the insurance company isn’t going to pay the $75 million plane crash settlement and the hospital is going to have to cover it and go bankrupt right? Everything else is was more or less filler.

I’d say it’s going to be interesting to see how the hospital keeps its doors open, but if I were a betting man, I’d say once the Oceanic Six, er the Seattle Grace Five find out their win would bankrupt the hospital, they’ll give the money back and everything will return to status quo. Besides Callie, none of them seem to be too excited about winning anyway. Plus, wouldn’t it be weird if five of the characters were worth $15 million a piece and still working at the hospital? The one way to keep this storyline intersting/going is to have a divide amongst the doctors where some are for giving the money back to save the hospital while others don’t want to.

As for the rest of the show, it was OK. I thought the best non-settlement moment was Owen feeling up Intern Jo thinking it was Cristina. I wish I found Derek and Shane’s ping-pong game as interesting as the doctors did. Jackson’s going away from Mark’s plan would have been more interesting if there was even the slightest sign of distress during the operation. Since it went smoothly, I don’t see why there was so much to-do with Arizona and Derek beforehand. Also on the Jackson front, him hooking up with Intern Stephanie doesn’t feel so taboo since we saw Derek/Meredith and Burke/Cristina in the same situation eight years ago. I’ve given this show enough of a hard time about recycling storylines; I won’t get into it again here.

A few thoughts and I’m done….

*It’s good to see the show taking some time to show Richard grieving over the loss of Adele. Time will tell if all’s forgotten by next week’s show. It’s interesting what this show chooses to harp on and gloss over at times.

*I like the Alex-Inter Jo relationship. I hope it stays where it is. It would be nice to see Alex have another female friend where that’s all that is going on. “Grey’s” can’t help itself when it comes to pairing up characters though. I mean look at what happened to best friends Jackson and April.

*I don’t blame Mer, Derek, Cristina and Arizona for being a little uncomfortable with the idea of Callie’s celebration dinner. I agree with Meredith that their settlement does feel a little like “blood money.” It was nice to see the dinner end well with Meredith revealing her pregnancy and Derek forgiving Owen.

*If Owen accidentially feeling up Intern Jo was the funniest moment of the episode, Bailey’s beach incident on her honeymoon was a close second.

* Lines of the Night…

-“Mo money, mo problems.”

-“Tell your twisted sister, she’ll be happy for you.”

-“I thought I was getting an iPad.”

-“Webber didn’t want the pity cookies from his girlfriend about his dead wife.”

-“My life isn’t all about the cookie.”

-“He’s giving us $15 million. Each.”

-“I should have been on that (darn) plane.”

-“Except Mer, and she probably wanted to (get together with Alex) at some point.”

-“You’re the new babysitter who doesn’t know where the wipes are at.”

Well, that’s all I have for this week. I hope you all enjoyed the show. Until next time…

Joe Dyton is a marketing copywriter in Washington, DC, a freelance sports reporter for the Frederick News-Post in Frederick, MD host of the “This Week in TV with Joe Dyton” podcast and co-host of “The GD Podcast”. He can be reached at thedytonian@yahoo.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http://twitter.com/dyton99.

“This Week in TV with Joe Dyton” podcast Episode One

In Uncategorized on October 3, 2012 at 1:21 pm

By Joe Dyton (thedytonian@yahoo.com)

Greetings!

I just wanted to give you a heads up that I’m taking The Dytonian to the airwaves with the “This Week in TV with Joe Dyton” podcast. I hope to make it a weekly occurrence, but time will if that pace will be possible. I will provide commentary on the TV shows I watch throughout the week and chat with avid viewers of various shows so you won’t have to hear just my voice every week.

For the first episode, I chat with Jon Walton about the Emmy Awards, the new fall season and the future of NBC’s comedies. You can click here to check it out. Enjoy!

Joe Dyton is a marketing copywriter in Washington, DC and a freelance sports reporter for the Frederick News-Post in Frederick, MD. He is a former assistant editor for The Dealmakers real estate magazine in Hamilton, NJ and a former sports writer and copy editor for The Trentonian in Trenton, NJ. He can be reached at thedytonian@yahoo.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http://twitter.com/dyton99.

“Making a Living Writing”: “Looking for the Right Combination”

In Uncategorized on July 28, 2012 at 1:56 pm

By Joe Dyton

In the fall of 2009, I attended a book signing for one of my favorite writers, former ESPN.com columnist and now Grantland.com editor-in-chief, Bill Simmons. He was willing to write whatever people asked (within reason) along with his signature. I told him I had aspirations of becoming a freelance writer one day and asked if he could jot down some sort of inspirational, “from one writer to another” message. He wrote the best advice I could have ever asked for”

“Follow your dreams.”

Since then, I have done my best to do so. I have bought and read several books on how to build a freelance writing business. I have reached out to companies, web sites and publications about writing for them with some success, but not nearly as much as I’d like. I thought in the three years since Mr. Simmons signed my copy of “The Book of Basketball”, I would have a client list a mile long.

I have been writing since 1998. I have worked for a local daily newspaper, a national trade publication and I currently write marketing copy for one of the country’s largest insurance companies. My most consistent freelance client is another local daily newspaper. When I look at my experience, I wonder why in the world won’t more companies let me do freelance work for them?

Right now, I am looking at building a successful freelance writing career as finding the combination to a secure safe. I have two of the numbers (experience and ambition), but I can’t figure out that third number to unlock the path to what I imagine is a satisfying and fulfilling second career.

That’s where The Freelance Writers Den comes in. If I were to win one of the yearlong scholarships, I have no doubt den mothers Carol and Linda could help me uncover the missing combination number that’s eluded me the last couple of years. I’d welcome the resources the Freelance Writers Den offers with open arms. I’m especially interested in the writing courses; it’s been 10 years since I received my journalism degree (where did the time go?). It would be great to re-learn things I may have forgotten, maybe break some bad habits and learn some new tricks. The classes combined with Linda and Carol’s freelance writing ebooks (particularly how to market my writing) would get me where I’d like to be as a freelance writer. I have no doubt.

My goal is forever etched in Mr. Simmons’ “Book of Basketball”. I want to follow my dreams. I have tried to do it on my own for a few years now, but it hasn’t gotten me to where I thought I’d be at this time. I come to you, Carol and Linda, and ask you to use your expertise to help me unlock that safe.

Thank you for reading and for your consideration.

Joe 

Joe Dyton is a marketing copywriter in Washington, DC and a freelance sports reporter for the Frederick News-Post in Frederick, MD. He is a former assistant editor for The Dealmakers real estate magazine in Hamilton, NJ and a former sports writer and copy editor for The Trentonian in Trenton, NJ. He can be reached at thedytonian@yahoo.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http://twitter.com/dyton99.

 

“Grey’s Anatomy” recap: “Flight”

In Uncategorized on May 18, 2012 at 10:51 am

Last night we bid farewell to Season Eight of “Grey’s Anatomy” in a very somber fashion. If it weren’t for Ben and Bailey’s engagement, that would have been a completely depressing hour of TV. Lexie died, there’s no rescue in sight for the other members of the Oceanic, er Seattle Grace Six, April has no future and Teddy’s leaving. And of course we can’t forget about the Chief’s residents’ dinner that none of them were looking forward to.

Just because it was a sad episode, doesn’t mean it was bad. I thought it was a little slow, but I think that was a result of the show’s somber tone. Sandra Oh was really good as was Eric Dane during his “I love you” speech to a dying Lexie. That was some of the best-written material he’s gotten in a while, it’s no coincidence last night’s show was written by creator Shonda Rhimes. I also liked the call back to the pilot episode when the residents, then interns, were being introduced to the hospital by Richard. Especially since his prediction that two of them would leave the program altogether sort of came true. Izzie and George are no longer there; granted George died, but technically the group is down a pair of docs six years later.

Sadly, a lot of suspense was killed when Patrick Dempsey, Ellen Pompeo and Sandra Oh renewed their contracts. It’s too bad that news couldn’t have been kept under wraps until the finale aired. With that announcement came out beforehand, that cut the possibilities of who was going to die in the plane crash in half. Even without that news, it’s probably fair to say that the chances of Meredith, Derek or Cristina dying were pretty slim. I also felt the ABC promo department didn’t do the episode any favors by saying ONE would die in the preview. With that knowledge, it was obvious that even though Mark wad fading, Arizona was going to talk him out of the white light because we knew Lexie had already passed. I guess if we pick up where we left off at the start of Season Nine, he could still die, but as for last night, it was no surprise he was going to live.

The big surprise was Teddy leaving. I was never that attached to that character, so Kim Raver’s departure doesn’t bother me too much. It’s a shame that it took Owen firing her to get her to take that great job opportunity, but it showed great selflessness on his part because he is going to need her if Cristina does leave him. I also thought it was selfless of her to originally turn down the job so she could be there for Owen, but that wouldn’t have been wise. Owen fortunately recognized it.

Leave it to Bailey to save the day and keep at least some of the episode light. I’m not sure how the long-distance thing will work, especially with Ben working intern hours, but for now they’re happily engaged.

A few other thoughts and we’ll call it as season…

*I was hoping the finale would open up like the first episode of “Lost”. You know, Meredith’s eye opens and there’s just a burning plane and people running around and screaming frantically. It was sort of like that, but there wasn’t as much panic as during the “Lost” plane crash, but Arizona definitely took care of the screaming. We did get another “Lost” moment though when a Dr. Shepherd (although spelled differently) needed to have his arm stitched up. So there was that.

*I had a tough time sympathizing with Alex, Jackson and April dreading the residents’ dinner. I know they all have their issues (especially April), but a free, fancy dinner that includes duck that “just falls of the bone” sounded fantastic. It was great when April said she was just going to suck it up and be happy for the night. We’ll see how long that lasts when they find out why Meredith and Cristina aren’t at dinner.

*It was a great scene when Teddy and Meredith were performing the same procedure, albeit Teddy with all the proper equipment, and Meredith with whatever they could scrape together and Cristina and Derek, who between them had two good arms.

*It’s always funny to see when and where these characters decide to open up about how they are feeling. It was sweet when Teddy explained why she wasn’t going to leave Seattle, but did she have to do it in the OR with a patient on the table?

*Going forward, I wonder how they’re going to keep all of residents in Seattle, or if they’re not going to even bother. I assume the Season Nine premiere will pick up right where we left off, so that will give the writers a little time to figure out the docs’ decisions. It’s simple for Meredith; she can just decide to stay and convince Derek they’re better off there. For Cristina, now that Teddy’s gone, maybe she’ll have her eye on the top cardio spot. Although, she can’t go from new attending to Head of Cardio, right? I’m not sure what reason the writers could come up with to have Alex stay; maybe if Arizona is laid up for a while with her injury, he might decide to hang around. As for Jackson, my fearless forecast is that April is going to be pregnant and he’ll stay.

“Lines of the Night”…

*”I don’t know. I only have one shoe.”

*”I’m married to an orthopedic surgeon and I’m staring at my bone.”

*“Tasty-Freeze, no brainer.”

*“I still have PTSD, so I’m not reliable.”

*”I found it!” “The first-aid kit?” “My shoe!”

*”You were married? To a man?”

*”You’re not a free agent anymore.”

Well, that’s all I have. I hope you all enjoyed the episode and the season as a whole. Thanks for reading; I apologize for the lack of consistency in my write-ups, this year. I hope to be back on the weekly routine for Season Nine.

Joe Dyton is a marketing copywriter in Washington, DC and a freelance sports reporter for the Frederick News-Post in Frederick, MD. He is a former assistant editor for The Dealmakers real estate magazine in Hamilton, NJ and a former sports writer and copy editor for The Trentonian in Trenton, NJ. He can be reached at thedytonian@yahoo.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http://twitter.com/dyton99.

Rangers-Capitals Game Five Recap: “Miracle on 33rd Street”

In Uncategorized on May 9, 2012 at 9:23 am

By Joe Dyton

I was ready.

I was ready to write the obituary for the Rangers’ 2012 season. With about six minutes or so left in Game Five Monday night, the Capitals were up, 2-1 and the Blueshirts couldn’t get anything going. I assumed the game was going to end, 2-1 or possibly, 3-1 on an empty-netter. I also figured Game Six would be nothing more than a formality. I know the Rangers took a 3-2 series deficit on the road in the first round, but the Caps are better than Ottawa and I figured they took care of business at their place. I shared this exchange via text message with my buddy Mike (a Caps fan) around the time I assumed the Rangers were toast:

Mike: “How are you feeling? I’m going crazy.”

Me: “I think the hourglass that is the Rangers’ season is just about out of sand. I am not sure they can pull off another Game Six and Seven back-to-back like they did last series.”

Mike: Caps haven’t won yet.

Could you blame me for thinking so negatively? The Garden was silent. The only line that was generating anything was the Brad Richards-Marian Gaborik-Carl Hagelin unit. All I could keep thinking was, “Who is going score?” The Rangers have some talented players, but no one who can just grab the puck and go score like the Capitals do. Even when the Rangers got that power play off of Joel Ward’s high stick, I didn’t get too excited because before that this as their power play for the night:

0-for-3, 0 shots on goal.

With a stat like that, I couldn’t get my hopes up even with Henrik Lundqvist pulled and the Rangers having a 6-on-4 man advantage.

Then, some way, somehow, the Rangers cashed in on their most important power play of the season. I don’t know what surprised me more; Richards tying the game with 6.6 seconds left, or the fact the Rangers scored on the power play. Either way, the Rangers had life.
Since Ward’s high stick drew blood, the Rangers got a four-minute power play and got to start OT up a man.

I thought it would be so great if the Rangers could just score on the PP and make it an early night. Then I thought it might be asking too much for them to score on both ends of a double minor.

Or was it?

Marc Staal and the Rangers PP proved me wrong again when he blistered that shot past a screened Braden Holtby. They got two power play goals in one game? I couldn’t believe it. Hopefully if they get any power plays in Game Six or (gulp), Game Seven the Rangers will employ the strategy they used for Staal’s goal. Get the puck to the points, forwards in front of Holtby and let it rip. Or at the very least, let the point-men wind up until the Caps’ forwards go down for the block attempt. Either way, I just know that the pass-pass-pass-perfect shot isn’t working and Holtby is stopping just about everything he can see.

A few other thoughts…

*I know the Rangers outshot the Caps, 38-18, but I felt like the Caps controlled the game after the Ranger-dominated first period. The Rangers had a lot of trouble generating quality scoring chances, while the Caps’ shot total wasn’t high, but the shots they did get were mostly high-quality.

*It’s scary to think how close the Caps came to winning this one. In the third period, they developed three great scoring changes on odd-man rushes and Nicklas Backstrom hit the crossbar after deking Lundqvist on a breakaway. It is game over (series over?) if he gets that puck an inch lower. Also, if Hagelin doesn’t bleed after he got hit by Ward’s stick, that’s perhaps a two-minute minor and OT starts at even-strength.

*The Rangers have to stop taking bad/lazy penalties. If the Caps had held on last night, the Rangers would have lost three games in this series on third period power play goals: Richard’s interference in Game Two, Hagelin’s slash in Game Four and Mike Rupp’s hook on Monday night. I’ll cut Rupp a little more slack because he was slowing down a scoring opportunity. Still, this series is too close and goals are too tough to come by to be taking needless penalties.

So, the Rangers have two cracks to win a trip to the Eastern Conference finals instead of one. I have a feeling that they might need both of the cracks. The Caps are going to come out even stronger than they did in Game Four; hopefully the Rangers will be more prepared for it this time.

Don’t be surprised if this goes seven.

Thanks for reading; until next time…

Joe Dyton is a marketing copywriter in Washington, DC and a freelance sports reporter for the Frederick News-Post in Frederick, MD. He is a former assistant editor for The Dealmakers real estate magazine in Hamilton, NJ and a former sports writer and copy editor for The Trentonian in Trenton, NJ. He can be reached at thedytonian@yahoo.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http://twitter.com/dyton99.

Rangers-Capitals Game Four recap: “Even Steven”

In Uncategorized on May 6, 2012 at 3:35 pm

Well, here we go again.

After four games in the Eastern Conference best-of-seven semifinal, the Rangers and Capitals are tied at two games each. That’s hardly a shock given how evenly matched these two teams were headed into the series. Now we have a best-of-three, and I wouldn’t be surprised if all three games were needed to decide this one.

What did surprise me was how flat the Rangers came out to start Saturday afternoon’s contest. I think everyone knew the Caps were going to come out guns blazing; they had no desire to go back to New Yorkdown 3-1, and they played like it. The Rangers looked a step slow; I’m not sure if they were still hung over from the triple overtime Game Three win, or if they relaxed mentally because worst case they were headed home tied at two games each. Whatever the reason was, the Caps out shot the Rangers, 14-3 in the first period. The only reason they just 1-0 was because of goalie Henrik Lundqvist.

Rangers coach John Tortorella must have had some strong words for his team between periods because they were much more into it when the second period started. I think it’s even safe to say they dominated the first half of it. It’s worrisome that the Rangers take so long to get warmed up sometimes. It seemed like they didn’t get going until Game Six of theOttawa series when their season was on the line. Then on Saturday when they had a chance to put a stranglehold on the series, they don’t show up until the second period. My hope is that on Monday night, their mentality is, “We can’t go back to D.C. down 3-2,” and not, “Let’s try to get this one, but if we lose, we can still tie it up in Game Six and win Game Seven back here.” The Caps played Game Four like they’d be eliminated if the lost it; let’s see if the Rangers can play with the same sense of urgency on Monday.

A few other thoughts…

*I’ll let others pin this one on Lundqvist, I’m going to give him a pass. I know there’s the thinking that he got his glove on Alex Ovechkin’s goal and that he has to find a way to stop Mike Green’s goal in the third, but he made so many other saves that he shouldn’t have. Namely, the stop he made on Ovechkin at the doorstep on the Caps’ first power play and how about the 2-on-0 save he made on Nicklas Backstrom. Yes, I would have liked to have seen him make one of those saves too, but this game isn’t even close without him.

*The Rangers’ offense still isn’t productive enough. I feel like it’s been the same thing since 2009; this team has so much trouble scoring goals. At times, I forget how they ended up with best record in the East. Just about every goal the Rangers score is grinded out; they needed a lucky break on their second one on Saturday. Braden Holtby’s defense hung him out to dry badly on that one. It would help if the Rangers could take advantage of the power play, but they went 0-for-2 again on Saturday. I think it’s too much to ask of a goaltender to hold a team as dangerous as the Caps to no or one goal every game.

*Not a great day for the officials, in my opinion. I agree that Carl Hagelin should have been penalized for slashing in the third period. My question is, why wasn’t Ovechkin penalized for breaking Brian Boyle’s stick in half just minutes earlier? The inconsistency in officiating during these playoffs is appalling. Speaking of inconsistency…

*I’m not shocked that Ovechkin isn’t even getting a hearing about his hit on Dan Girardi. There is just no rhyme or reason to who the league warns, fines, suspends, etc. This at least the third Ranger who’s taken a hit to the head in the playoffs and there have been no suspensions. Is it because Girardi didn’t get hurt on Ovie’s hit, that he’s not even going to get a warning? When Ovechkin got suspended earlier this year for leaving his feet and delivering a blow to the head, the league said once he left his feet, he’s responsible for contact to the head. Isn’t this the same thing? I kind of like the idea that the NHL just has a big “Price is Right” wheel that they spin when deciding whether or not to take action against a player or how long to suspend him for, because honestly, I don’t how else they come up with the punishments or non-punishments that they do.

My fingers are crossed that officiating doesn’t play into the result of Game Five, or at the very least, the Rangers can stay out of the box if the game is tied late in the third. It would also be nice if they could find a way to give Lundqvist some kind of margin for error. Either way, I have do doubt Game 5 will be just as tight and intense as the previous four.

Until then…

Joe Dyton is a marketing copywriter in Washington, DC and a freelance sports reporter for the Frederick News-Post in Frederick, MD. He is a former assistant editor for The Dealmakers real estate magazine in Hamilton, NJ and a former sports writer and copy editor for The Trentonian in Trenton, NJ. He can be reached at thedytonian@yahoo.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http://twitter.com/dyton99.

 

Rangers-Capitals Game Two Recap: “The Garden of Even”

In NHL, Uncategorized on May 1, 2012 at 4:34 pm

By Joe Dyton

Two games may be a small sample size, but it appears the difference in the Rangers-Caps series is going to be which team can avoid making the crucial mistake.

Throw the seedings out the window, these teams are evenly matched. The Caps have more offensive firepower, but some of that is negated by the Rangers’ solid team defense and Vezina and Hart trophy nominated goalie Henrik Lundqvist. Since both teams have decided to play the same low-risk, defensive style, each game is going to come down to power play effectiveness and avoiding costly mistakes.

Take Game One where Mike Green’s ill-advised line change led to Chris Kreider’s game-winning goal. That brief mental lapse swung the momentum in the Rangers’ favor and the Caps never recovered.

On Monday night, the trended continued in Game Two, but it was the Rangers’ miscues that helped the Caps even the series. A turnover led to a 3-on-2 for Washington that resulted in the game’s first goal. Lundqvist inexplicably tried to play the puck behind the net with the Caps rushing in. Let your “D” men get that puck, Hank! Two-zip, Caps.

Despite the Rangers’ comedy of errors, they were still somehow tied at two with the Caps midway through the third period. Their most costly mistake off call came when Brad Richards took a penalty just 36 seconds after the Rangers had just killed one off. I know some people felt the holding call was marginal, but at that stage of the game, a player can’t give the ref any reason to raise his hand. The Caps’ power play had been unimpressive to that point, but with all the skill players they have, it was inevitable they’d cash in eventually. Sure enough, before Richards could get comfortable in the penalty box, Alex Ovechkin rifled one past Lundqvist.

As the series moves on to Washington, I don’t see either team changing their strategies too much, especially the Caps who were able to steal home ice. Prepare for more low shot totals, a lot of blocked shots, a clogged neutral zone and hopefully less mistakes.

A few other thoughts…

*A bad game for Lundqvist? I don’t like to always like to look at the goal total when judging a goalie’s performance. I’m more interested in how each goal was scored. Last night, the Caps’ first goal was a tic-tac-toe assault finished off by Mike Knuble. I’d hardly put that on The King. Same goes for Ovie’s game-winner. The last things you want to give Ovechkin are time and space and he had both when he ripped that shot past Lundqvist. The only goal I’d put on him was the second when he gave the puck away. Bad decision, yes. Bad game, not really.

*Have the power play units broken through?: I was exchanging texts with my Caps-fan buddy Mike and whenever one of our teams had the man-advantage, we hardly got excited. Could you blame us? After all, both teams started the series 0-for-6. Then wouldn’t you know…

Mike (after Knuble’s penalty): “I’m scared.”

Me: “Like the Caps’ PP, the Rangers’ is bad.”

Ryan Callahan scores on a deflection. Two-all.

I almost fell out of my chair when Callahan tied the game. Mike texted me, “God (the Caps’) PP sucks,” just a few minutes before Ovie scored. We tried to figure out if the Rangers and Caps’ penalty kill units were really that great, or if the power play units were underachieving. Ultimately, we decided both teams are very good at killing penalties, but the power plays are so-so. I’ve actually accepted the fact that Rangers power play isn’t effective, but I’m surprised the Caps have been unable to get it going. I think both teams pass way too much to find the perfect shot. By time they get that perfect shot, 45 seconds of the power play has expired. We’ll see if either team tries a new strategy going forward.

*Missing, Marian Gaborik, last seen New York, NY, Game One, Eastern Conference seminfinals: Where has the Great Gabby gone? I know he set up Richards on the goal on Monday, but this guy scored 41 goals this season! The Rangers need him to find the back of the net if they’re going to win this series. They don’t have enough weapons to get by another round without him. I saw on Twitter today some people wondered if he’s nursing an injury, but it not like he’s skating poorly or anything. I just think he’s been kept in check.

That’s it for Game Two. As a Ranger fan, I’d love to see them take both in DC, but I think that’s unlikely. A split is fine, just as long as they win Game Three so I can watch Game Four pressure-free. Ah forget it, take ‘em both boys!

Joe Dyton is a marketing copywriter in Washington, DC and a freelance sports reporter for the Frederick News-Post in Frederick, MD. He is a former assistant editor for The Dealmakers real estate magazine in Hamilton, NJ and a former sports writer and copy editor for The Trentonian in Trenton, NJ. He can be reached at thedytonian@yahoo.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http://twitter.com/dyton99.

 

Rangers-Capitals Game One Recap: “Hit Me With Your Best Shot”

In Uncategorized on April 29, 2012 at 2:37 pm

By Joe Dyton

So, was that a game between the Capitals and Rangers or a split squad New Jersey Devils scrimmage circa 1995?

There were 32 shots on goal for the game! That wasn’t the Caps or Rangers game total, the two teams combined to shoot (18 shots forWashington, 14 forNew York). I figured this game was going to be tight, but I figured each of teams would at least hit the 20-shot mark. Given that both teams went on power play four times (although one of the Rangers’ was for less than 30 seconds), those shot totals are ridiculously low.

During the game, I exchanged a few texts with Caps-fan friend Mike, and I said that after the first period there was zero room to skate out there. It was almost as if it was eight-on-eight. After the period ended with the shots advantage of 6-4 in favor of the Caps, I figured it was the result of both teams being a little tired from playing Game 7’s and also a bit tentative since it was the first game. Turned out that wasn’t the case as neither team didn’t record double-digit shots in the second or the third periods either.

As a Rangers fan, I’m happy they pulled out the win. I wasn’t sure what to expect since they played a grueling Game 7 against Ottawajust two days beforehand. I just hope that as the series goes on, the Blueshirts find a way to get more pucks towards Braden Holtby. I don’t think less than 20 shots going forward is going to do it. On the Caps’ side, Dale Hunter has gotten this offensive-minded team to buy into a more defensive approach, and it got them in the playoffs and past the defending Cup champs,Boston. If they can’t generate more offense in Game Two, I wonder how patient they will remain when they head back to DC for Games 3 and 4.

A few other thoughts…

* I felt one of the game’s biggest turning points early on came when the Caps didn’t score on their 5-on-3 power play. The Garden crowd had gotten a little quiet, and that kill reignited the fans. The Caps had an excellent opportunity to set the tone after a scoreless first period. Instead, the Rangers fed off the PK and took a 1-0 lead thanks to a crafty wrap-around by Artem Anisimov (pull him down and take the penalty there, Mike Green!) Although…

*Did anyone else see the Caps’ goal at the end of the second coming? I know I did. It was the perfect storm, the Rangers looked like they were headed to intermission with a 1-0 lead to protect, but couldn’t keep the puck in the Caps’ zone to close out the second. When the Caps came flying down the ice with less than 20 seconds to go, I just knew they were going to score there. Brooks Laich’s flip pass was brilliant, as was the concentration by Jason Chimera to knock it past Henrik Lundqvist without even having to really settle it down. As much as I wanted to kill the Rangers for giving up a goal so late, I think more credit has to go to the Caps for their clock awareness and execution.

I also don’t care what the NBC crew says, that wasn’t a “soft” goal given up by Lundqvist. Just because a shot goes through the goalies’ legs doesn’t mean it’s a soft goal allowed. Same goes for Brad Richards’ goal; it wasn’t soft; he put it past Holtby from point-blank range. Stop it, Mike Milbury, just stop it.

*Chris Kreider, the kid is all right. When the Rangers finally signed Kreider after he finished his season atBostonCollege, I thought it was nuts that people said he might join the Rangers in the playoffs. Huh? He just finished playing college hockey; his first NHL game was going to be in the Stanley Cup playoffs? I admit I dismissed the idea. Then Carl Hagelin was suspended during theOttawa series for three games, and the kid got the call. The Hagelin suspension sucked, but who knows if we would have seen Krieder without it? He scored the game-winner in Game 6 in the first round and did it again on Saturday, and had the primary assist on Richards’ insurance goal. I hope he’s wearing a blue shirt for a long, long time.

*I thought the refs were OK, but not great. They kept the game under control, which was good to see, and I had no problem with Mike Rupp’s goaltender interference call. He wasn’t pushed into Holtby. To me, the key missed call was the trip on Marcus’ Johansson’s pseudo-breakaway in the second. I agree that it wasn’t a goal, but he was tripped. I also got a kick out of the missed trip on Alex Ovechkin with about four minutes left in the game, and he yelled audibly, “Are you (effing) kidding me?” It’s too bad the microphones don’t pick up more of that stuff.

Overall, I thought it was a decent Game One. Obviously better for Rangers fans than the Caps’ faithful, but I have a feeling it will be awhile before this one is decided.

Final thoughts from my friend Mike from the Capitals perspective, “Two-minute breakdown, (crappy) PP and Mike Green (-2 on the day) lost that game.”

My final thoughts from the NYR perspective: I’m grateful for the win, but am concerned about the low shot total. The Caps probably deserved a better fate; they held the Rangers to 14 shots and lost, not to mention they hit the post three times. Even though the Rangers hold the edge, I feel winning Game Two is almost essential since the Caps are strong at home (last series not withstanding).

That’s all for now. Hope you enjoyed the game. Until Game Two…

Joe Dyton is a marketing copywriter in Washington, DC and a freelance sports reporter for the Frederick News-Post in Frederick, MD. He is a former assistant editor for The Dealmakers real estate magazine in Hamilton, NJ and a former sports writer and copy editor for The Trentonian in Trenton, NJ. He can be reached at thedytonian@yahoo.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http://twitter.com/dyton99.