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  1. Lilja Blog

    Well since it was linked from Per Bjurman's blog who is an official journalist and knows all the Detroit Swedes very well, then I'd say that the odds are it's legit. I doubt that he would bother linking to a fake blog - especially since he spoke with Lilja as late as just before the game against the BJ's and Lilja no doubt would know whether it was fake or not . And apparently Lilja told him he'd tell him about the Olympic bet with Zetterberg if Bjurman was 'nice' - there was also some mention of the exchange Swedish snuff being involved Bjurman being a known dealer of the stuff to various NHL players.
  2. Lilja Blog

    Found this through a link in Per Bjurman's NHL Blog - for those who don't know, Per Bjurman is the (only) US based journalist of Aftonbladet and though he makes his bread and butter from writing about Obama's health care reform and GM's sale of Volvo, he's a huge hockey fan, and especially of the Rangers and the Wings. He writes an often hilarious blog about the goings on of the many Swedish players and tends to get them to say things they'd never say in a million years to an American or Canadian hockey journo I thought it would interest people here that apparently Lilja has blog (now in english too though he's a bit blunter in the Swedish version). Nothing earth shattering or too indiscreet but fun to read about the day to day of the NHL grind - as well as Lilja's apparent propensity to make bad bets with Zetterberg! Lilja's blog
  3. While we're all starting to breathe again after last night I thought I'd post a fun little human interest piece I found in a Swedish tabloid Expressen and that I haven't seen translated and reposted anywhere. Lidstrom tends to be slightly less boring and bland in Swedish. Link to Expressen Swedish veterans want to write history together They've won four Stanley Cups and one Olympic gold together. Now Nicklas Lidstrom, 38, and Tomas Holmstrom, 36, can become historical. No other Swedes have ever become NHL champions five times. "Of course that would be huge," Nicklas Lidstrom tells HockeyExpressen. Tonight the semi-finals against Chicago Blackhawks begin. Two of the key players for the team is an old seasoned Swedish couple, "Nick and Homer." That's what they're called in Detroit. After 800 games together and twelve seasons these two guys know almost everything about each other. They live close to each other with their families and drive together to games. "The guys on the team call Homer my chauffeur. Because I've been in the NHL longer and have seniority he has to come pick me up on the way to practices and games," Nicklas Lidstrom says with a laugh. Lidstrom and Tomas Holmstrom have both had fantastic careers in NHL. Lidstrom has developed into the best defenseman in the league and won the Norris trophy six times. Homer, who many thought would have a hard time finding a place in the NHL, has become a world class player in front of the crease. He's even been singled out by one of the US's biggest publications, Sports Illustrated, for that particular skill. Lidstrom and Holmstrom have won and lost together. The know each other's strength and weaknesses. But just like in any long-time marriage there are times after all the games and travel and practices when they get on each others nerves. "Maybe not seriously, I think I've seen Nicklas really lose his temper twice during all these years," Homer says with a grin. "What happened?" "Once when one of his boys set fire to the woods behind their house and the second time he blamed me when we crashed with the car. Let just say that he wasn't too happy then." When Lidstrom is told of the car story he gives a somewhat different version. "Homer was supposed to check if there were any cars coming from the other direction when he was in the passenger's seat drinking his coffee. He told me 'just drive' and the next thing I know there's a huge bang. But he didn't mind, he didn't even spill his coffee and it wasn't his car." 'Lidas' has also trouble thinking of any serious quarrels over the year. "But he'll get extremely surly if you don't shoot the puck where he can steer it in when he stands in front of the crease. Then he'll let fly and let you know what you're worth. He also gets really sulky from time to time." "Homer is known among the Red Wings to have a really short fuse and he has been known to curse out both team mates and coaches. But when Scotty Bowman was coach Homer just glared at him if Scotty changed the lines and removed him from a face off." Can you tell us anything funny or personal about him? "Homer's 'svenglish' is still the target of much laughter among us. He tends to do a literal word by word translation and then it can sound really weird. Although he's been here for more than twelve years the language still stymies him. But he's cool with it." Something else we don't know about Tomas Holmstrom? "He's a got a real sweet tooth (lit. candy troll) and he's got some local place in Piteå sending him candy. He's always got a bag of candy that he's sneaking around eating from when we travel." His best trait as a hockey player? "He's got fantastic hands when it comes to standing in front of the opposing team's goal and steering in shots. He's got amazing hand-eye coordination and after every practice he forces the rest of us to shoot the puck at him again and again." What fascinates you most about Holmstrom as a hockey player? "That he's scored more goals with his back against the crease than any other player in the league."
  4. Don't know if anyone has read this, but pretty interesting that Babcock has been lobbying hard to bring Ericsson up for the past two years. Funny comment by Kenny Holland about coaches 'always wanting a new toy.' I guess we all know now who really makes the decisions in the Red Wing organization http://www.usatoday.com/sports/hockey/nhl/...-ericsson_N.htm
  5. Kesler and Burrows talking trash about Backes' wife

    Yes well, the problem is that if Datsyuk was trash talking (to a non-Russian speaker) I doubt anyone would understand him so, as long as the Wings aren't playing the Caps I'm afraid poor Pavel has to leave the trash talking to Chelios or Draper/Maltby. Actually that would be a great reason for the Wings to play the Caps, just to match our Ruskie against their five and watch Datsyuk jaw with the 'Russian Five' and the Swedes trash talk Backstrom and Nylander.
  6. Ladies alternative to playoff beard

    Du är en idiot, på ren svenska. Och jag har ingen aning om hur du kan veta om jag är man eller kvinna, FYI är jag definitivt en kvinna, men jag har mina tvivel på att du är man... liten barnslig pojke möjligtvis And for our american friends, a quick translation. I'm definitely a Swede and a woman, but I have my doubts re your claims of being male, possibly a small rude boy is more correct.
  7. Ladies alternative to playoff beard

    As a Swedish female, you're an idiot who have absolutely no idea what you're talking about. If anything Swedish females tend to have more bodyhair than NA females as there is a greater ethnic mix of bodytypes in the US and Canada. Remember that Asians and Native Americans have little to no bodyhair and having that ancestry somewhere in your family tree cuts down on your natural growth of bodyhair, while northern Europeans, such as Swedes, have a *lot* more - on a related note consider the playoff beards and you'll see that it's usually the men coming from mostly northern European/Slavic ethnicity who sport the real growth. Ethnic adaptation to the environtment pure and simple for both males and females. Granted blond bodyhair is less visible but it's there, trust me. Most Swedish females, of which you obviously know few intimately, for that very reason are very careful to shave/depilate themselves regularly.
  8. Johan Franzen signs extension, 11 years

    Hmmm, anyone notice that this is essentially the kind of contracts that Draper and Maltby and even Chelios are playing out? That is, their salary/cap hit has decreased exponentially as they enter their late 30's (okay mid 40's in Chelios' case ) but they remain with the team albeit with a decreased salary and ice time, but contributing leadership and experience on ice. Why do you guys think that the Red Wings command such loyalty among players? Because owner and management value and treat vets right, none of this throwing older players on the garbage heap to chase after the latest shiny prospect. I've never understood the obsession among some teams fans for 'the new (insert player's name)' when you umm, you already have the actual player playing for you. Toronto is a good example where both fans and management treated the actual Sundin like crap in their search for the 'next Sundin.'
  9. The "Suspensions"

    The implication of what Ken Holland said was that if someone from the Red Wings had shown up to play, Bettman and the NHL would not have suspended Lidstrom and Datsyuk. It was only after two other Red Wings players declined to go in their stead (citing already made plans) that a suspension was threatened and then carried out. In other words, it was the fact that there were no Red Wings players at the ASG that made the league decide to suspend Lidstrom and Datsyuk. Bettman basically said, if no one on the Red Wings comes and plays, we will suspend the two players we selected. If someone from the Red Wings comes and plays, there won't be a problem nor a suspension. That, at least was my interpretation of what Ken Holland and other Red Wings sources have said on the matter.
  10. The "Suspensions"

    I think what really bothers me is not the 'rule' per se. If the GM:s did indeed agree, then yes it should be enforced. But as stated by Ken Holland, it seems pretty damned clear that had any of the other Red Wings the NHL asked to go instead of Lidstrom and Datsyuk agreed to show up, (by all accounts Hossa, Rafalski and/or Zetterberg ) then this would not have been an issue and no suspensions would have been handed out. In other words, this is less of an iron-clad rule enforced by the NHL as much as it is a petty revenge by Gary Bettman. Those damned Red Wings don't bother to show up at my party? I'll show them... Either it's a rule, in which case no matter who the substitutes are, Lidstrom and Datsyuk would be suspended, or it's only if none of their team-mates show. I have to say the entire situation comes across as nothing so much as pure blackmail and therefore treading in very murky waters. If the NHL was so determined to get at least one or two Red Wings there, and I have to agree that it was pretty much a travesty that the defending SC champions and the team third in the league had no representatives apart from the assistant coach, then a) they could stop with the internet ballot stuffing voting system and b) Bettman could have picked up the phone and told Holland about the problem and asked him to send one or two players. I'm sure that some of the role players who ordinarily would not have had a chance of being selected, would not have minded going to represent the Red Wings. This would have been the logical and reasonable thing to do, but obviously Gary Bettman chose another course of action.
  11. The sky is falling

    ... or maybe not. Look, last year the Wings could fly almost unnoticed under the radar. Remember when all the 'experts' not to mention fans of opposing teams all believed that the wings would crash out in the first round 'like they always do.' That they were too slow, too old, too soft, too euro. This year no one will underestimate the Wings. The media had already anointed them the best team in the NHL before the season started. The coaches, GM's and players of all the other 29 teams are no less immune to the media hype than are the fans. If you read the news and the message boards of the opposing team before a Wings games this year teams and fans alike are all pumped up to play the Wings. Why do you guys think that Central had such a (comparatively) good record against the Wings? Because both players, coaches and fans wanted to win those games more than anything. Because the Wings are what the other teams in Central strive to emulate and therefore both hate and envy. This year it goes not only for Central but for the rest of the league as well. Playing the Wings will get the players going, gets them into a scrappy, agressive do or die playoff mode, because if they can beat/hang with the defending champs, the mighty Red Wings, then hey, they too are a SC contender. Every team, including the Wings need some extra motivation during the long and sometimes weary regular season. For the rest of the league this year, that motivation is the Red Wings. And I think this is part of the reason why so far the Wings have looked less than stellar, simply because other teams are playing that much better against them. Give credit where credit is due. The question is what will serve the Wings as motivation? Unfortunately the Wings don't have an archnemesis, a team that regularly defeats them and that they can hate with a passion. The Avs used to fill that role but with the drubbing in the playoffs last year and the problems they have this year, it might be hard to work up that necessary hate. Who else? The Ducks, the original six? The Wings are simply too damned good! This is why I think all this early, I hesitate to call it struggle, but roadbumps, is a very good thing for the Wings. I don't expect or want them to win the Presidents Trophy and be dominant like they were last year. If they play perfect hockey and crush all their opponents, then I'll be a lot more worried. To be honest I hope the Red Wings play like crap, that they lose games, that Babcock rails and the forums despair and that we get loads of trolls here to mock the fall of the mighty Wings. Because it's through adversity that you build a team and that bloody-minded fighting spirit that you badly need to make it all the way to the SC. Last year it was the memory of falling to the Ducks in the WC finals and of being told repeatedly that they were too old, soft, etc, etc that served as motivation. This year let it be being dismissed for playing really bad hockey, being hung out to dry by the pundits, and losing to the Kings and Leafs and Canucks I don't want the Wings to be told repeatedly what a great and dominant team they are, how no other team will ever beat them. Not even professionals are completely innocent of believing their own press. I will leave you guys with a final thought. After five games played: 2007: 3-1-1 2008: 3-1-1 Yup, the sky is definitely falling.
  12. Since summer boredom has now officially set in - apart from spending the last two days surfing the board of the hysterical preds fans - who btw, have now descended to hoping that Flip's negotiations will go badly enough that they can offer him the sky and earth to sign there, yeah, I found this little tidbit and thought I'd post since it has some totally funny Datsyuk moments. One really do feel for him, especially if, as this blog implied, his speech notes were stolen! "No, I mean my husband is coming back" A Seatfiller's Story edit: because I'm an idiot with links
  13. Where will the Cup visit?

    According to an interview with a Swedish newspaper Lidstrom, who had it overnight, drove his kids to school today and brought the cup with him to show to their classmates. With classical understatement, Lidstrom's comment was, "they seemed to appreciate it ."
  14. As you guys can imagine, the SC finals are pretty big here in Sweden, considering half the nantional team is playing and one of the biggest tabloids, Aftonbladet, has a guy who regularly blogs live from the NHL on gamedays - since he's based in NY he usually focuses on the Eastern conference. But he's in Detroit at the moment covering the finals. Link http://blogg.aftonbladet.se/18756 and possibly because he's Swedish and bribes the players with Swedish snuff, they tend to relax and be a little less like walking cliches and more like actual human beings. If you scroll down the blog you'll find some pretty fun pictures he's taken, one of a demented looking Babcock, the heading underneath entitled, Babcock chasing Lilja... There is also a picture of Franzen's sticks and the bowels of the Joe with the game jersies and one of Lidstrom's dad (if you wondered who the older guy is). He also sprinkles his blogs with fun little tidbits about the players and I've collected a few for you guys. Let me know if you want me to continue doing so. Fillipula on what he'll say to his countryman Ruutu if they meet on the ice: "Eh, I'm not going to be the one who'll say something..." Lidstrom. Kronwall, Franzen and Holmstrom eat lunch together on game day at Andiamo(?) Holmstrom pays because once last winter after he paid, he played a great game. Lilja and Samuelsson are not allowed to join the others for lunch. Because, they would like everyone to know, they're blue collar workers and not allowed at a fancy place like Andiamo, therefore they have to make do with a home made lunch box. Holmstrom on whether he thought a fuming Babcock would try and kill the refs after the goal was dissallowed: "I thought he'd kill me..." Holmstrom on whether Samuelsson is the new Franzen: "Nah, Frasse scores hat tricks" Brian Engblom walks around dressed in a pair of hideous stone bleached jeans when not in the studio Lidstrom on whether he changes his routine during the SC finals: "No, I eat lunch on my way home and then I'll have a nap" Journalist: "You can sleep today?" (This was before game 1) "Sure, no problem" Crosby has thighs like oak barrels NB. Edited so the link to the blog works!
  15. Zetterberg article

    English is taught in Swedish schools from grade 3 (a second language usually French or Spanish or German is added in grade 6). Furthermore, nothing is dubbed in Sweden only subtitled and as English language shows dominate Swedish television, Swedish kids grow up listening to English on the telly, English lyrics on the radio and going to English language movies. Consequently most younger Swedes speak English more or less fluently - albeit not as well as some think they do - although you can usually hear if someone's Swedish from the way we pronounce W and V. I also lived in Kenya and the UK for almost ten years, so am more or less bilingual if 'polluted' into spelling British not American. Cheers, MJ PS. I cannot believe that Homer has lived in the US as many years as he's done, his English is atrocious!