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Where has 5-hole.com Pick ’em been for the last 3 weeks, you ask?   Well, I was in Beijing looking for a lovely young bride.   Eric was on a flight to Florida with his financial adviser.  And Rory was negotiating contracts in California.

Now we’re back, and just in time because there’s a full slate of games on tap for tonight.  It’s a great night to have the NHL Center Ice package.  On to the picks!

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There is controversy brewing over the Penguins’ game winning goal scored by Sidney Crosby in overtime last night.  The big question is whether Crosby made contact with the puck above or below the crossbar.  The goal was reviewed and it stood.  So what’s the problem?  The call on the ice was goal.  The replay did not conclusively disprove that.  It’s a goal right?  Maybe, maybe not.

1Why it’s a goal:
1. The NHL says it’s a goal, therefore, it’s a goal.
2. Someone at Pensblog drew a cute picture!  They can’t be wrong, can they?

Why it’s not a goal:

1. Conspiracy theorists claim the NHL is just furthering the Sidney Crosby love fest.

22. The picture from Pensblog is misleading because the puck was not in line with the corner where the post and crossbar meet when it made contact with Crosby’s stick.  It was actually closer to the center of the crossbar.  Oh no!  The new line goes under Crosby’s arm and the puck!  NO GOAL!
3. Commenter Tom L. on the Puck Daddy post says, “Crosby is 5′ 11″, 6′ 3″ on skates. The crossbar is 4ft high and the puck hit a few inches below his armpits. Unless Sid’s swollen head is 28 inches tall, that’s well over 4ft.”
4. If the NHL had disciplined Crosby for his actions in the game against Atlanta, he would not have even been playing in this game.
5. This picture left by another commenter in that Puck Daddy post shows with more lines that the net is only 80 pixels tall in the image, while the distance from the puck to the ice is 91 pixels.  11 pixels isn’t all that much but it’s still something.
seanwasrightcrosbyhs

I say it was no goal.  But what do I know?  Onto the picks!

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In yesterday’s game between the Thrashers and Penguins, a fight broke out after the Thrashers’ first goal.  At one point, Sidney Crosby gives Boris Valabik 3 solid punches from behind while teammate Kris Letang held Valabik down.  Crosby was clearly the third man in on this “fight” and he sucker punched Valabik not once, not twice, but three times yet he was only accessed a roughing minor.

The Honda zamboni was so excited to get inside Wrigley field that it jumped off of the truck that was transporting it.  Luckily, no one (including the zamboni) was injured.

Quick! Go look at our picks before Sidney Crosby punches you in the back of the head! (more…)

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Lightning Canadiens HockeyYes, we made picks yesterday and no, we didn’t post them.  We’re sorry.  But just to show our dedication to this, I am revealing to everyone that Marc and I both picked the Habs as our gimmies last night. The Habs lost. To the Lightning.  That’s right, the Lightning.

Last night, I went 5-3 and dropped my first gimmie of the season by picking the Habs over the Bolts.  Marc also went 4-4 and also dropped his gimmie by picking the Habs.  Rory went 3-5 last night but did not pick the Habs as her gimmie.  She went with the Sharks who won.

Oh well.  Let’s get to some news:

Petr Prucha’s days in a Rangers uniform may be numbered.  Andrew Gross over at Ranger Rants has this:

Renney was asked whether Prucha’s latest three-game stint was enough of a sample for him.

“Yup,” Renney said. “If it wasn’t, he would still be in. He gave me everything he could. It depends also on what you need. Nigel is in primarily because of his ability to score and help create offense. Also, he’s a playmaker. He helps, I think, supplement what we might need offensive by his ability to make plays. It’s where we are and what we need to generate. It’s capitalizing on guys that have been out of the lineup that want badly to get back in and do the right thing as they do that.”

So there you have it.  Nigel Dawes: playmaker.  Did anyone actually notice Dawes in that game on Wednesday night?  I mean besides the time in the third when he blew his golden opportunity.

The Islanders got absolutely destroyed last night by the Pittsburgh Penguins.  Enjoy:

Picks coming as soon as I clear all these hats out of the way… (more…)

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