At long last, the Canes finally beat those dagummed brown birds!! Leave it to those stupid things to totally chuck out what I said about the Canes being some kind of wonderful with Brindy back...at least during that mess on November 27th. Even though last night's affair was not totally great by any means, the Canes at least finally got a win over Turner-Town, AND Staal gave Kovalchuk the owning for which he has been screaming. The latter being in the form of Staal getting a breakaway during a Thrashers power player, notching the goal while Kovy flung himself at Eric, AND then proceeding to make Kovy so mad that he broke his stick on the nearby glass and board. And while Kovy was putting on that little show, Eric gave the over-caffeinated Russian a staredown that was quite reminiscent of Ronnie Franchise, if I do say so myself.
And that leads me to something that I have to say after a mini-rant I did at LetsGoCanes.com last night (ironically enough before the power went out...which did not come back on until around three in the morning) about the potentially brewing Francis vs. Staal debate: I *still* say you cannot compare the two. I also *still* say that Eric and Ron have each played in a different era of the NHL/hockey. I would say that Eric's style is a flashier version of Ron's...with more goals scored than assists obtained. Based on this season alone, and even 2003-04, I would say Eric will go down as a goal scorer on the colorful tapistry of hockey and WhalerCanes history, while Ronnie will always be best known and remembered as an assist-man/playmaker.
Oh, and those who had/still have the damn gall to say Eric is a better athlete AND has a better attitude than Ron *really* need to be crammed into a small room, and watch nothing but 1980's Whalers games for 24 hours straight. Yes, Eric does have better athleticism than Ronnie does now...and as proven in 2003-04, it would be quite an unfair matchup. But what about twenty years ago? When going against guys like Wayne Gretzky, Cam Neely, Mario Lemieux in his youthful prime, Steve Yzerman in his youthful prime, Bryan Trottier, etcetera, your athleticism AND ESPECIALLY attitude should be far from chopped liver. Not to mention how when you are 21 like Eric is now AND Ronnie once was, that tends to do wonders for your mental and physical athletic health.
Anyhoo, and on a more frivolous note, I'm going to start playing more Super Puzzle Fighter on my Game Boy Advance whenever the Canes are playing. As silly as it may sound, I fired that thing up during the first period of last night's game, and the Canes almost immediately started to play better. Be interesting to see how long that mojo keeps up...good thing I started my new goal of having undefeated rounds on Normal, Hard, and Master modes with all eight regular characters and Akuma.