This is usually the part where I write something snarky, but I’m genuinely impressed with the artwork here. These kids have a promising future in hockey sign development.

Where did Tim Thomas go?

While the likely return of Patrice Bergeron is getting all the attention tonight along with some guy named Seguin who seems to be scoring a lot lately, the play of Tim Thomas has been somewhat overlooked. As Ryan Durling of SB Nation notes, Thomas has had two pretty rough games against Tampa Bay.

Tim Thomas has allowed nine goals in two games – two more than he allowed in the entire series against Philadelphia, twice as many as he allowed in the first two games against the Montreal Canadiens, both losses by the Black and Gold.

Seguin’s comeback is about more than just hockey

Of course it is, because sports just can’t be sports any more. We have to be sold something, a reality that lands athletes on our TVs during commercial breaks. Greg Wyshynski spoke to Under Armour’s director of marketing, a company that’s capitalized quite nicely on Seguin’s two-game outburst.

Today in obvious headlines…

NESN would like us to know that we shouldn’t expect Seguin to maintain his ridiculous scoring pace.

Martin St. Louis almost walked away

That’s what he told Chris Stevenson of the Toronto Sun, with the small, rugged forward saying that after last season he seriously considered putting the wheels in motion to leave the Lightning with one year left on his contract. Those thoughts came before Steve Yzerman began remodeling the franchise and building a championship contender, and before Guy Boucher came aboard.

Now after bringing the cup to Tampa Bay once, he’s seven wins away from another championship.

“At the end of (last) season, I started entertaining the thought. There was one more year on my deal and I didn’t know where the franchise was going at that time,” he said. “Three years not making the playoffs is a pretty humbling experience after what we had done. There’s many moments during those three years when you’re out of a playoff spot by February almost. One year, OK. We got Steven Stamkos out of it.”

Tampa fans are insecure, lacking in humour

In the latest example that hockey fans can’t take even the slightest bit of ribbing (seriously, how the hell do the Puck Daddy eulogies actually generate sincere anger?), the people of Tampa Bay didn’t like the latest gem from Boston’s marketing department.

Led by local radio moron shock jock Mike Calta, Lightning fans bombarded the Bruins until signs with jabs such as “The Loch Ness Monster. Big Foot. Lightning fans” were removed from around the TD Garden. Chad Schnarr, who is the co-founder of, a website documenting the progress of the team’s farm system, didn’t see the punchline at all.

“I don’t know how you can’t take it personally. When you take on the fans, you’re going right to them. I don’t think you can just laugh it off when it’s directed at you. Some understand it’s a joke, but …”

Oh Chad, you overly sensitive poor soul. Please realize the signs were creative, gentle barbs lobbed at a fanbase, and barbs based solely on stereotypes should be the easiest to laugh off, although too often that’s not the case. For example, every April Habs fans are repeatedly called car-burning fanatics, but the sensible people of Montreal know that it’s just a loud minority of idiots who’ve participated in those past incidents. Meanwhile, Leafs fans are saddled with the stigma of being a bunch of Blackberry wielding suits, but that place is still pretty damn loud and filled with waffles during November losing streaks.

If you’re part of the fanbase and live the culture of your team, the typical jabs during playoff time should be equivalent to the light verbal ripping between men in a heated bar debate. The words sting briefly, and then you return fire, and all is forgotten moments later.

Besides, as Days of Y’Orr points out, it could be a lot worse: