Friday, May 29, 2015

Redwing77's Nickname Post

by Redwing77

As I sit here in a Public Library study room listening to my neighbor chomping away on some sort of snack food louder than any sound you'd hear at, say, a rock concert or perhaps sticking your ears up to an airhorn....  I thought I'd chime in on the nickname thing.

First, and foremost, it isn't going to matter at all what UND does with a new nickname.  Any way they cut it, they'll get blasted.  It's the nature of the beast.  "It's taking too long" is just the first little run of snow in the avalanche if you will.

Anyways, the list.  I've removed the redundancy because, let's face it.. there's a TON of it.  Also, any name I just said "nope" to, I simply deleted as well.  No point in commenting on the ones that just don't fit.

Arctic Blaze/Arctic Force - For some reason oxymorons are cool?
Aurora - We are not a place in Maine.  We are not the given name of Storm of X-Men.  There's nothing to this nickname.  Moving on.
Aviators - I think this one is ok.  We can all don flightsuits and aviator glasses and wave orange batons in a "sieving" motion at the opposing goaltender.
Badlanders -I don't think this is as bad as people think.  However, anything with "bad" in it opens us up for taunting.  That and South Dakota has a lot of badlands too and I'd rather not be associated with them.
Big Green -  Because we want to be like Dartmouth College, right?  Nope.
Bison Slayers - I thought they were going to whittle the list down and eliminate the dumb ones?  Whoops.  One got past the censors.
Blackhawks - YEAH!!!  Let's go ahead and rename ourselves as ANOTHER analogous name to Native Americans!  This will work fine!  Right?  Guys?  Why is our name still on the list?  It's a military helicopter (because the US Army doesn't name their helicopters after Native Americans right?  Not the Apache, the Kiowa, the Cheyenne, the Navajo, Chinook, should I go on?)
BLIZZARD - This would be easy to market.  It's not a bad name, to be honest.
Cavalry - I like this one.  I wonder what would happen.  It's not a Native American nickname, but undoubtedly they'd find offense to it.  Those poor activists need something to whine about.   I think we should make this one a finalist.
Charging Nokota- Hey!  Because we didn't read what I said about Blackhawks... 
ENERGY - OOoh!  We could dress up like cheap 1980s WWF tag team wrestlers!! and no.
Flame/s - Why do "Flame" and "Flames" make the list as separate entities? Doesn't matter.  No. 
Flickertails - no.  We're not misidentified Gophers.
Force of North - the haters would LOVE this one.
Nighthawks- I like this name.  I have TShirts from this team when it was a FAILING FOOTBALL TEAM FROM OMAHA
North Dakota - My first, second and third choice. Ok, I like this too, but the activists "like" this too.  They complain that this is just like keeping the old nickname.  I want this to happen but I also want those morons to be shut out in the cold.  Keeping this keeps those bums inside.
Pride -  OOOH!  We could have rainbow flags and host parades and then when opposing fans mock us, we can charge them with hate crimes!  N-EFFING-O! We are not some platform. 
roughriders - Already High School in Grand Forks. This is out.  yup
Spirit - See explanation for 'Pride' 
STORM - too cliche' 
Sundog/s  - UHHH NO!
Warhawks - Nope.  Analogous to Native Americans.  See Blackhawks.
Warriors  - SEE BLACKHAWKS DANGIT!!!!  There's a reason why Marquette isn't known as the "Golden Warriors" anymore ya know. 
Wings - Strangely enough, I like this one.  I wonder why?  (still, no).
 Wooly Mammoth -No thanks to the hairy elephants.

In any case, that's my take on it.  My top three:

1.  North Dakota
2.  Cavalry
3.  tie between Badlanders, Aviators, and Blizzard

Sadly, the nickname I'd've liked to have seen didn't make the list:  Predators.  Sure, it's Nashville's team, but I think the drone is cool.

Schmaltz Signs with St. Louis and Other Stuff

by Redwing77

Going into the offseason, I predicted two players leaving:  Zane McIntyre and Jordan Schmaltz.  Sadly, I did not predict Hakstol leaving.  More on that in a bit.

Schmaltz, a former first round draft pick of the Blues, officially signed per Brad Schlossman.  The signing itself, to me, comes as no surprise, though some of the comments on Brad's blog, for some reason, did.  Some "fans" seem to think poorly of Schmaltz and his readiness for the NHL.  The thing is, I don't think anyone, Schmaltz included (my opinion anyways), expects him to jump right to the NHL.  But Schmaltz did do very well for himself at North Dakota.  He showed improvement every year in Grand Forks and he decided to begin his trek to the NHL as a pro one year early.  I'd expect nothing less for a first round pick.

It's a loss, but not an unexpected one.

The same is true for Zane.  What else, other than a National Championship, could Zane accomplish?  Hobey Baker?  No.  In my opinion, Ryan Miller winning the Hobey Baker is more an exception to the rule rather than anything else.  True, Robb Stauber (87-88 for UMN) also won the award as a goaltender but in today's NCAA, it's not going to happen.  Good luck to Zane in the pros.  He's got a logjam ahead of him in net with Boston, but you never know.  After all, I thought Boston found an excellent backup in Svedberg but he bolted for the KHL instead.  Malcolm Subban is ahead of McIntyre and I'm sure there's at least one other vying for time in the NHL (no one is unseating Rask at the moment tho).

This leaves UND with Hrynkiw (sp?), Cam Johnson, and 2015 NHL Combine invite Martej Tomek in net.  It will be interesting to see what happens.

UND has incoming freshmen D that will be interesting to watch as well.  I've watched Wolanin and Hayden Shaw play in the USHL last season and I'm no evaluator of talent, luckily for UND.  Shaw split the year in the USHL between Waterloo and Dubuque.  Stats aside, I didn't notice much of him during the year.  That's not good for a puck moving defenseman (which in the USHL means offensive-defenseman).

As for Wolanin, he was Captain this year of the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL.  This speaks to his role in the lockerroom, even though my experience with watching him was highlighted mostly by him spending an awful lot of time after the whistle and after each period arguing with the officials.  He was solid defensively, but not dynamic in my opinion.

How will this pair out with the returnees (and I'm assuming Keaton Thompson is returning as well).  Who knows?

As for Hakstol...

I'm interested to see what Hakstol does in the NHL.  It will definitely be an adjustment.  Player attitudes are different.  The game is a bit different as well.  But most notably, Hakstol's "power" is different too.  In Grand Forks, Hakstol is the coach, GM, Director of Player Personnel, Head of Player Development, Head Scout (even if recruiting is split between him and his assistants), and all that.  In the pros, he's just the coach.  He has input on the other aspects but no real power.  It's like a higher profile, higher paying, demotion in a way.

I hope he does well and that his experience isn't as (apparently) unpleasant as Blais' was with the Blue Jackets.  The Flyers aren't exactly playoff ready but they're close.  They're lacking scoring, a 2nd line center, depth at all positions except defense, and goaltending.  The NHL Radio on Sirius suggests that the Flyers only need a backup goaltender.  Uh...  Chris Mason is their backup goaltender.  Emery was a has been that could've been and Zepp is a neverwas who is living the dream.  As far as I'm concerned, they're desperate for a #1 after giving up on Bobrovsky (Columbus) only to see him turn around and get the Vezina 2 years later.

Heh.  Chicago has to practically disband after this year due to salary cap.  Corey Crawford is a name that has been popping up as someone Chicago will have to trade.  Philly is stacked to overflowing with defensive prospects.  Perhaps Crawford for a prospect and cash?  It's not like Chicago can't find another goaltender.  I mean, they signed an overage UDFA named Antti Niemi and won their first Cup in 60+ years.  Crawford was at the point of becoming a bust when he finally stuck and won their second.  Chicago remains a hot place for undrafted players to sign.

What do I know though?

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Adrian Peterson has two Choices

In the never ending, sad, saga, Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer spoke about the team's awol, star running back today. Shall we say that he has options, Peterson can play for the Vikes or he can sit on the sideline. In a nut shell, the spoiled brat can honor his contract or not play in the NFL at all. I think this is awesome. Bravo coach Zimmer.

I am sorry, I just don't feel sorry for AP, he made this mess, not the Vikings. In my opinion, the Viking did nothing wrong, Adrian Peterson did. I am tired of these athletes that act poorly in their private lives and then turn around and act like he's the victim. You make 10 million dollars a year to play a kids game. You abused your child, you should be banned for life. If I was the commissioner of the NFL you punishment would have been harsher than what you received.  (Link to the evidence)
Conor Orr, NFL.COM -- Now that the draft is over, so is most of the trade speculation surrounding Vikings running back Adrian Peterson.

Both sides have spent the offseason digging in their heels for what looks like a bitter tug-of-war with no ending in sight.

Play NFL Fantasy Football!

And on Wednesday, Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer drew a line in the sand.

"He's really got two choices: He can play for us. Or he cannot play," Zimmer told the assembled media at offseason workouts.

Peterson, of course, has not made himself available for any of the Vikings' voluntary offseason workouts so far. Zimmer also added that Peterson gave no indication as to when he'll make it up north and put his old uniform on again.

Stanley Cup Finals Schedule Released

If the Stanley Cup Finals go to game seven, we will be watching hockey deep into June.  The only questions we left to answer, who's going to be the two teams in the finals? 

Game 1 Wednesday, June 3
Game 2 Saturday, June 6
Game 3 Monday, June 8
Game 4 Wednesday, June 10
Game 5 * Saturday, June 13
Game 6 * Monday, June 15
Game 7 * Wednesday, June 17
* if necessary

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Badlanders Gains Steam in InForum UND Nickname Challenge

The Fargo Forum is having a little fun, they want to see which nickname their readers think will make it to the next round of the nickname selection process. It appears that "Badblanders" is gaining steam with the fans. You can submit your vote at this link. Don't forget to submit your vote.

From a serious angle, it's nice to see that Sundogs and the Flickertails nicknames aren't doing very well.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Thoughts on Possible New Nickname

With the list scaled down to 63 potential nicknames, I'd also like to give my thoughts on each potential one, much like Eric did.

Aeronauts - I say not. 
Aeros - This is ok. Makes sense with the aviation program, but still could do better. 
Arctic Blaze - I find this as to poke fun of the harsh Grand Forks Winters
Arctic Force - See previous name
Aurora - An aurora is a gases reacting in the atmosphere to put colors dancing across the sky. Are they implying that UND is gassy?
Aviators - Again, appropriate, but could be better. 
Badlanders -Lets just skip this one shal we?
Big Green - I dont know what to think about this one
Bison Slayers - Won't happen, but this was the first one that made me laugh out loud
Blackhawks - It's a good name, but we cant use the native american logo and the team would probably take alot of heat for taking it from the NHL team, even though two of UND's most successful alums were successful with Chicago. 
BLAZE - Moving on.....
BLAZING STARS - ok, again, moving on.... 
BLIZZARD - it's alright, but doesn't work with the Kelly green color scheme
Blizzard Dogs - Whoever submitted this, I'm sorry, but no 
Bombardiers -- I like it. Name it after a former UND captain, Brad Bombardier  
Bombers - meh. maybe. 
Cavalry - da da da da da da CHARGE!
Charging Nokota- could be worse, like Flickertails 
Drillers - no  
ENERGY - Will our logo be a power plant, or the Sun?
Explorers - lets not and never say we did 
Fighting Green - 
Fighting Greens - 
 Fighting Hawks - 
Fighting Sundogs -  
Fire - NO
Flame - this is a team and a university with more than one person. new name shouldn't be singular
Flames - I'll let you just think about this one for a bit. I know what they are going for here, but it wont end up meaning that to rival fan bases 
Flickertails - Yes, because I want the school to be represented as an animal that mistakenly gets identified as a gopher.  
Fliers - meh. 
Force - Didnt realize we were in Fargo now. 
Force of North - too close to the Pride of the North marching band. Let's not.
Global Hawks - Not the worst name on here
Green Bombers- 
'Grey Hawks' - 
Nighthawks -  
Nodak - Let's just delete these next two.
Nodaks - 
North Dakota - My first, second and third choice. ******Im 100% with Eric on this one
North Force - Say this one out loud. Just do it. Sounds terrible doesn't it? 
North Stars -  Yes, lets piss off Minnesota even more with the use of the name of the state's former NHL team that moved to Dallas.
Northern Lights - Too blahhhh 
Prarie Hawks - no 
Pride -  What does this have to do with anything? 
Riders -  
roughriders - Already High School in Grand Forks. This is out.  
SNOW DOGS - Anybody see this movie? 
Snow Leopards - HA! 
Spirit - See explanation for 'Pride' 
STORM - could be worse. logo could be a lightning bolt with tornado shoulder patches.  
Sundog -  
Sundogs  - UHHH NO! 
Thunder Hawks- This is Grand Forks, ND, not Grand Rapids, MN 
Warhawks - ehhhh
Warriors  - I'm surprised this made it this far.  
Warriors of the North - Cool tribute, but it's too much to say
Wings - I hate the Detroit Red Wings, so I obviously don't like this one. 
 Wooly Mammoth - no

Why Flickertails is a bad Idea

I tweeted this same thing yesterday. For the UND fans that want the name Flickertails. This is what we're talking about. Does that remind you of anything?

This should cause people to stop and think. Ahem, do we want the University of North Dakota to referred to as Flickertails? Seriously?

By definition: A Flickertial is a Richardson's ground squirrel (Urocitellus richardsonii), or the flickertail, is a North American ground squirrel in the genus Urocitellus. Like a number of other ground squirrels, they are sometimes called Dak Rats or gophers, though this name belongs more strictly to the pocket gophers of family Geomyidae.

No! I will take a pass on this nickname as well. I am not interested in having the battle of the grounds squirrels.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Sifting Through the Nickname Recommendations

The's 63 nicknames to choose from. Some of them are down right horrible. In breaking down the names that are still on the list, I find very few that are acceptable.
Aeronauts - I say not.
Aeros - I find this acceptable.
Arctic Blaze - where not in the Arctic.
Arctic Force - Redundant, - where not in the Arctic.
Aurora - This is just as bad as Sundogs.
Aviators - Yep, works for me. Favorite of RWD.
Badlanders - Meh!
Big Green - Hum. That one could work.
Bison Slayers - Ha! I find this one amusing.
Blackhawks - We already play Chelsea Dagger when UND scores. I guess we could take their name, too.
BLAZE - Blaze up eh.
BLAZING STARS - How about Blazing Saddles? Nope.
Blizzard Dogs - Checking, there's already  a Newfoundland Blizzard Dogs
Bombardiers -- bomb, bomb, bomb. Could have possibilities.
Bombers - Okay, works for me.
Cavalry - I wonder if this would fly?
Charging Nokota - A Nokota Horse could be an acceptable mascot for me.
Drillers - Yeah, one has to think of the warped possibilities. I am going with not. 
ENERGY - Boring.
Explorers - Meh.
Fighting Green - Why not just go with Gang Green?
Fighting Greens - Yuck!
Fighting Green Hawks - What's with the Hawks.
Fighting Hawks - Of the Hawks suggestions, the one is probably the most acceptable. That and Blackhawk.
Fighting Sundogs - I want to put an  EF-Bomb here.
Fire - Nix!
Flame - Nine!
Flames - Nay! This should be obvious. We would be copying the Calgary Flames.
Flickertails - I just threw up in my mouth a bit.
Fliers - Whatever.
Force - We already have the Fargo Force.
Force of North - I could live with this.
Global Hawks - Catchy, named after the drones.
Green Bombers - Whatever floats your boat.
GREEN HAWKS - I suppose we could come up with a badass logo for that. Or not.
GREEN PRIDE - Horrible idea.
'Grey Hawks' - What's with all the hawk names?
 Night Hawks - Another nickname with hawk in it.
Nighthawk- We could use a ____ as the mascot?
Nighthawks - Is there such a thing? There is.
Nodak - Again, whatever.
Nodaks - Like Charlie from Hockey Bias said, this could be clumsy.
North Dakota - My first, second and third choice. ******
North Force - This is kind of clumsy, too.
North Stars - I could get behind this one.
Northern Lights - This doesn't do it for me.
Prarie Hawks - Okay.. Whatever.
Pride -  Yuck! And hell no!
Riders - There's already a high school in town that's named Rider or Roughriders.
roughriders - Same thing applies here.
SNOW DOGS - Yuck! Again, another bad name. What's the mascot going to be?
Snow Leopards - Only cats we have in ND is a Mountain Lion.
Spirit - No THANK YOU!  Next.
STORM - Better than Sundogs and Flickertails.
Sundog - Oh hell no.
Sundogs  - I just threw up in my mouth a bit more.
Thunder Hawks WTF?
Warhawks - There's some possibility with this one.
Warriors  - I am surprised this one made the list.
Warriors of the North - In honor of the men and women from GFAB.
Wings - Green Wings?
 Wooly Mammoth - This one is amusing.

God No! Please. No Sundogs

When I read this quote, I am very concerned. Seriously, I can't imagine that the University of North Dakota's sports teams could end up being called the "Sundogs". What a horrible idea for a nickname. UND could end up being a laughing stock if tagged with this nickname.
Anna Burleson, Forum News Service --- "People wanted to be unique as we go forward," he said. "I think it was important the considerations we do have are solely unique and are something that would be solely the university's."

McDonald and Bridewell both approved a form of "Sundogs" and said it was unique to the region.

"It would be marketable," McDonald said. "It would help to identify us at national level."
If you look at the 63 nicknames that are on the list, very few are what I would call acceptable. For those that don't know what a Sundog is, click on this link.

This is the definition of a Sundog - Sun dogs, mock suns or phantom suns, scientific name parhelia, are an atmospheric phenomenon that consists of a pair of bright spots on either side on the Sun, often co-occurring with a luminous ring known as a 22° halo.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Video: And the Academy Award goes to Andrew Shaw for Embellishment

Anaheim Ducks forward Ryan Getzlaf is assessed a two-minutes minor penalty for high-sticking Chicago Blachkawks forward/pest Andrew Shaw. I think you could make the argument for embellishment by Shaw. If you count the seconds after the infraction in question it's almost a two full seconds before Shaw reacts.

Here's a gif of the play in question. Looks like Shaw wasn't even touched by Getzlaf. You make the call, you be the judge.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

This is the season, change change change

by Redwing77

Ok, first I see my Red Wings bow out early.  That's ok, I didn't expect them to make the playoffs (none of the pundits did either).  Now... lots of change.

First, Hakstol bolts for the Flyers.  Ugh.  I don't like the Flyers.  Better there than Buffalo or Toronto, perhaps, but still....  it stinks.  I never saw it coming.  That being said, I talked to Hakstol in Kearney, Nebraska while the Tri City Storm (with UND recruit Chris Wilkie) faced off in what would turn out to be the season ending game for the Omaha Lancers (with UND recruit Shane Gersich).  He was a great guy and a splendid ambassador for North Dakota.

I still love to think about the Haters.  I mean, Hakstol couldn't win it all in his 11 seasons with North Dakota even with stacked rosters and a bucket load of tradition (which, by the way, never makes saves nor scores goals but whatever).  So, obviously, Hakstol shouldn't be considered worthy of anything, right?  Or perhaps just worthy of a head coaching gig in the NHL.  Not even the NoDak godcoach Dean Blais garnered that post... or perhaps he turned them all down to get an associate head coaching gig with the Blue Jackets?  Whatever.

Nevertheless, I don't know how it will work out for Hakstol in the NHL.  I hope he's successful.  It's a different world in the pros.  A TON of entitlement and "me first" attitudes prevail in that league.  Maybe he'll be able to convince Ron Hextall (of all people to say what's next) that GOALTENDING might actually be a CONCERN for Philly?  Hmm???  Seriously!  2 career backups and 1 30 something year old rookie isn't going to win you much.


And now Red Wings Coach Mike Babcock will head to Toronto to be the head conductor aboard the second biggest train derailment in the NHL (behind Buffalo).  Ok, there were rumors abounding regarding this pre-season but still!  This is a good deal for Toronto.  I mean, stealing assistants from Detroit didn't necessarily work out (see San Jose) so why not steal the head coach himself?

In any regards, the front runner for the Detroit gig is former WMU head coach Blashill.  Blashill knows the system Detroit runs and has lead the Wings in developing many of the younger stars currently on the Wings roster.  I don't know if this will thrust the Wings back to the Finals but it's not exactly a dumpster hire either.

If he's hired, it may also be good for college hockey.  In the past, I got the feeling that Detroit really didn't have much faith in the NCAA (despite Nyquist, Abdelkader, Howard, and a few others).  They typically invested a lot more in the Scandenavian hockey markets and major juniors as well.  Perhaps there is a shift in hockey town towards a find the best no matter where mentality that will include the NCAA now?  Who knows.

In any case, I haven't the foggiest idea what will happen in Detroit and Philly next season or two.

Final Random Musing:

However, in Toronto, the scuttlebutt is that Babcock's hiring is BAD NEWS for one named Kessel.  Babcock likes solid play at both ends and a complete buy in to the system.  He might be able to do that (much like Trotz did with Ovechkin), but many amateur pundits (including myself) suggest that Kessel should pack his bags in time for Draft Day because he'll be moving out of Toronto.

Nickname Committee Cuts List of Names to 64

The UND Nickname committee has cut the list of names to 64. One of the names under consideration is "North Dakota". Below is the list of names that are moving forward. Unfortunately, Sundogs and Sundog is on the list. I am disappointed that Green Machine is not on the list.

  1. Aeronauts
  2. Aeros
  3. Arctic Blaze
  4. Arctic Force
  5. Aurora
  6. Aviators
  7. Badlanders
  8. Big Green
  9. Bison Slayers
  10. Blackhawks
  11. BLAZE
  14. Blizzard Dogs
  15. Bombardiers
  16. Bombers
  17. Cavalry
  18. Charging Nokota
  19. Drillers
  20. ENERGY
  21. Explorers
  22. Fighting Green
  23. Fighting Greens
  24. Fighting Green Hawks
  25. Fighting Hawks
  26. Fighting Sundogs
  27. Fire
  28. Flame
  29. Flames
  30. Flickertails
  31. Fliers
  32. Force
  33. Force of North
  34. Global Hawks
  35. Green Bombers
  38. 'Grey Hawks'
  39. Night Hawks
  40. Night Riders
  41. Nighthawks
  42. Nodak
  43. Nodaks
  44. North Dakota
  45. North Force
  46. North Stars
  47. Northern Lights
  48. Prarie Hawks
  49. Pride
  50. Riders
  51. roughhriders
  53. Snow Leopards
  54. Spirit
  55. STORM
  56. Sundog
  57. Sundogs
  58. Thunder Hawks
  59. Warhawks
  60. Warriors
  61. Warriors of the North
  62. Wings
  63. Wooly Mammoth

For Those That were Wondering

I had a few people ask me this week what was going on with Zane McIntyre. Some wondered if the change at the head coaching position would make any difference. It will not make a difference.

One more to go.

Obviously, we're still waiting for Jordan Schmaltz as well.  According to Andy Strickland, it sounds like there's a chance that Schmaltz could be back this fall. We will see how that develops and plays out. For those that wondered, and I saw a few of the comments from fans, Strickland is a credible hockey source and is up on what's going on with the St. Louis Blues.

The Hamburglar gets a Raise

Last season, former Bowling Green State University goalie Andrew Hammond made a big splash with the Ottawa Senators. In his first season with the senators, Hammond was (20-1-2, 1.73 GAA & .943 SV%) in 23 starts.

For his efforts, the Senators are showing Hammond the money. Last season, Hammond made 750,000 with the Senators and is getting a pretty nice raise to 1.35 million.

Andrew Shaw No Goal

According to the NHL rule 78.5, this is why Andrew Shaw was not awarded the game-winning goal. According to the NHL Rules, the puck has to be shot in with a stick.