Atlanta Thrashers Vs. Pittsburgh Penguins
April 10, 2010


The bittersweet last game of the season. Our playoff hopes were now through, so we were playing for pride.

We arrived early and had dinner with some friends at the Taco Mac in the arena. We got into the arena as soon as they would let us and grabbed a spot on the glass for warm-ups, knowing there would be a bigger crowd than usual. After that, we grabbed our seats and saw a really great game! The final score was only 1 to 0, which might normally dictate a boring game, but it was the total opposite. They definitely went out on a great note.

The most notable moment was definitely Evander Kane's fight with Matt Cooke. Cooke is a complete dirtbag. He's a real dirty player that seems to constantly be making questionable hits on people, including our own Zach Bogosian last season with a knee on knee hit. More recently, he hit Marc Savard of the Bruins, giving him a grade 2 concussion and ending his season. The guy is a total pest. Back to the story at hand... Kane had landed a few hits on Sidney Crosby throughout the game. Crosby is Mr. NHL Superstar, so I guess he's supposed to be untouchable. Cooke was the teammate that came to his rescue in the second period and lined up with Kane. And then something we would have never expected happened - Kane knocked him out with a single punch. And the crowd went wild. And apparently, other crowds around the NHL world did too. Kane went from being our 18 year old rookie to being a total hero in what I'm calling "the punch heard 'round the world." Yep, pretty cool.

Lastly, as is always Thrashers tradition, they concluded the season with the "jerseys off our backs" ceremony, where they choose season ticket holders to receive their game worn jerseys, which they also sign as they hand over. Who knows? Maybe Travis or I will be on the ice next season... :)

Former Penguin Colby Armstrong was featured on the program.

There was a large crowd on hand for warm-ups and some of them had some comments for the opposing players.

A funny sign for Boulton.

Warm-ups begin and Moose leads the charge.

Kane stopped for an interview with Natalie Taylor.

My favorite Czech of the game, Ondrej Pavelec. ;)

He looks a little startled, doesn't he? I think he was reading Stefan's sign.

Toby looked to be in a good mood.

These two were definitely reading Stefan's sign. It was for Evgeny Artukhin and said, "Release the kraken."

One very focused looking Moose.

Peverley stands in front of some fans.

Now he's coming in for some shot practice.

Z-Bo is putting his tongue to work.

I was glad to see that they started Slava Kozlov for what will likely be his last game as a Thrasher.

A gathering of players, Kane reading Stefan's sign, and some guy dressed as a Penguin.

Kozlov takes a shot.

Boulton is bitin' that lip.

Hainsey lines up next.

An accidentally well-composed pic of Afinogenov and Moose.

Peverley is being a little stingy with the "RP Face" this time.



This must be Mooses's "WTH?" face.

Preparing for battle.

The end of the season is so painful! No more pics of thirsty goalies!



One more of Peverley.

Another one of Hainsey.

Bryan Little.

Artyukhin, chillin' by the bench.

The Moose Cruise.

Chicago Wolves call-up Arturs Kulda.

Kane strikes a pose.

Fleury looks to be reading the sign too. Travis and I call him "Jaws" because when he smiles, he's all teeth.

"This chick right here. She's the one that's always taking pictures."

Jim Slater.

Working that tongue again.

Kane takes another shot.

At the end of warm-ups, they always play "swarm the goalie." You can also see the larger than usual warm-up crowd in the back.

Pavelec hangs on for dear life.

Another shot of Kulda.

The starting line and junior hockey player.

Hedberg waits for the announcements to be made.

Jim Slater wins the Snyder Award.

The final opening face-off for the season.

They put Moose to work early, but he was up to the challenge.

Thorburn and Leopold kick up some snow.

A face-off right outside our zone.

Kane puts Fleury to work.

Kaner doesn't want to take no for an answer.

Moose peeks around Bill Guerin.

Slater went down for a few seconds, but he finished his shift before leaving the ice, not to return.

Kane is back to giving Fleury hell again.

A little pushing and shoving between plays.

One of Kane's hits on Crosby, taken by my buddy Stefan.

The ensuing discussion.

The ensuing penalty. Go cry, Sid.


"Not up in here!"

Another scuffle after another Kane and Crosby run in.

During breaks, Fleury ritualistically paces three times, then wraps it up with a tight spin.

Going into the spin.

Coming out of the spin and heading to the net.

Stretchy, stretchy.

A look at the bench.

Second period face-off.

Cooke decides to defend Sid's honor and lines up with Kaner.

Stefan's picture of "the punch."

Fred's picture of "the punch."

Zoomed in on Fred's picture.

Cooke, on his way down.

Lucky for him, Kane had his jersey and kept his head from hitting the ice.

Cooke doesn't know where he is, but Kane knows where he's going.

The penalty box!

They brought out a stretcher for Cooke, but they ended up not needing it.

The little cockroach was able to skate off.

Fleury can levitate pucks, look!

Kozlov at work.

Boulton and Godard. The battle of the Erics.

This battle was epic. It lasted forever!

The rest of the team had front row seats.

Godard lands a punch.

Boulton lands a punch.

One last punch before we go to the box.

Just a little wide.

Popovic lends Moose a hand.

Stefan captured the game's only goal here.


Fleury dives across the net.

He's hoping it's under there somewhere.

More attacks on Fleury's net. The puck is just under his stick there.

Moose hugs the post.

Malkin gets up-ended.

And Moose gets high sticked.

Fleury pounces on the puck.

The Penguins' empty net did them no good.

Thrashers win!

Much love for the Moose.

With the game over, the boys line up for the Jerseys Off Their Backs tradition.

More of the players at the other end.

Another look at the team as they prepare for the ceremony.

Nik Antropov is named the team's MVP.

The much adored Kiss Cam couple won the 7th Man Award.

The boys applaud the selection. :)

As the 7th Man, they got to choose who's jersey they wanted. They chose #4 Zach Bogosian.

Bogo and Antro pose for a picture.

The unjersey'd Z-Bo.

#0 Thrash gets the party started. He's wearing his Zach Attack shirt. Very nice.

#1 Johan "Moose" Hedberg.

#3 Mark Popovic.

#5 Boris Valabik.

#6 Ron Hainsey.

#9 Evander Kane.

#10 Bryan Little.

#12 Todd White.

#13 Slava Kozlov.

Valabik, on his way back over, looking rather GQ.

#16 Christoph Schubert.

#18 Niclas Bergfors.

#19 Marty Reasoner.

#20 Colby Armstrong.

#23 Jim Slater.

#27 Chris Thorburn.

#29 Johnny Oduya.

#31 Ondrej Pavelec.

#36 Eric Boulton.

#39 Toby Enstrom.

#41 Clarke MacArthur.

#44 Arturs Kulda.

#47 Rich Peverley.

#61 Max Afinogenov.

#76 Evgeny Artyukhin.

#77 Pavel Kubina.

#80 Nik Antropov.

A row of naked Thrashers!

Stefan got this awesome shot of Moose and Kozlov giving each other some love.

The boys said thanks to the crowd before heading down the tunnel.

Bye Thrashers! It was a wonderful experience this season and we can't wait to see you again!