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Housekeeping and Kris Versteeg

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Head and shoulders, knees and toes! Knees and toes!
Head and shoulders, knees and toes! Knees and toes!

By the time this is published I should be making my way to the airport as I head off to another European excursion. I wanted to note a few things. The first is that last month, despite the Leafs not being in the Stanley Cup Final or doing anything of note for most of the month, was our busiest month ever. We had over 138K visits and 340K page views. Thanks to everyone who drops by to read, to comment, or to write. The strength of the site isn't so much Chemmy and my good looks so much as my, Chemmy's, Karina's and SkinnyFish's good looks. Oh, and the community that contributes so much.

On that note, and I include myself sometimes, I understand that people are obviously frustrated with the recent history of the Maple Leafs. Over the past month and a half I've noticed (and had it mentioned to me on a few times) that there seems to be a bit more confrontational tone. It seems to tend from a few things: people not taking the time to read comments fully or responding without addressing what was written, people taking criticisms of their arguments too personally, and too much sarcasm. I love sarcasm as much as the next guy but sometimes it comes across as confrontational. Keep that in mind. Also, remember that there should be no personal attacks. If you are getting frustrated with someone take my mom's advice: ignore them. They either won't change their mind or aren't paying attention or are trying to push your buttons.

Finally, if you are new, try to make sure that you have the lay of the land before jumping in. It'll save a lot of misunderstanding. If you are not new, remember you were all new once, except for Jared who might have been commenting here before the site existed, so have some patience and be gentle.

While I am gone you'll be living under Jammienism. What does that mean? More summary executions probably and maybe some Chick Tracts. Enjoy!

After the jump, some thoughts on Versteeg from Chicago Bloggers.

First up: Fork Lift from Hockee Night who will be hosting Chemmy on their puckcast Monday night. Can't begin to imagine how many Xs that will be rated.

On the upside, you get a guy with good hands and outstanding puckhandling abilities. He'll stick up for his teammates the best he can, but it's not what you want him doing.

On the downside, he will always want to carry the puck into the zone, regardless of how many people are stacked up on the blue line. He will not, under any circumstances, dump or chip. He will also look at the refs after every slash, spear, whatever. He's the only Hawk who never figured out he had to play through some of that stuff.

You'll have at least one "Goddamnit, Versteeg!" moment in every game.

In fact, Game 2 vs. Nashville sums him up perfectly. He kept trying to carry the puck through the zone, and kept getting stripped. He took a dumb penalty. He turned the puck over. Then with 90 seconds left, he scored the game winner and got first star.

And now SamFels from SBN's Second City Hockey:

Basically, the country-stupid, naive shit eating grin that Kris Versteeg looks at the world through is the same way he plays hockey.  He's honestly convinced that he's Mario Lemieux, and that leads him to trying all sorts of shit on the ice. Sometimes, it's spectacular, notice his shorty against Columbus this year where he pulls three toe drags (honestly, who the fuck does that?)  He'll always try and dipsy doodle his way through the blue line, and take his fair share of dumb penalties.  Fork's right, he never stops bitching at the refs, which costs him.

And he'll frustrate the hell out of you.  He'll turn the puck over everywhere, take a lazy hooking penalty after one, bitch.  And then he'll kill a penalty and score a shorty.  The kid is mad talented, has balls of steel, and if he gets top 6 minutes (with actual Top 6 talent, not what you threw out there last year), I don't think 30 goals and 70 points is out of the question.  It's more likely that he and Kessel get in a fistfight at center ice though when one of them hogs the puck.  Don't play them together.

What do we need to know about Stalberg?  I find him at least a little intriguing. 

Ugh.  Roy Hodgson?

Yes, Roy Hodgson. Uggggh. Anyway, discuss!