Posts tagged “Darryl Bootland”

Bootland on Tootoo

Via the Free Press:

“He asked me to go, so I was ready to go,” Bootland said. “He was just trying to suck me in, and it worked out. Just happy they didn’t capitalize on the power play.” Bootland said Tootoo didn’t come near him the rest of the game. “It’s pretty frustrating,” Bootland said. “He comes in (Wednesday) and throws a sucker punch right off the hop — I thought it was. Usually, most guys have the respect that if you’re going to ask a guy to go, you’ll get ready and go.”

I know there are those people who would say Bootland is just whining, but he has a very good point. There’s such a thing as proper etiquette and Tootoo didn’t follow it. Now, Bootland probably should have known better, as one of Tootoo’s few redeeming qualities is his ability to goad players into taking penalties. Still, it’s not to Jordin’s credit that he proposed a fight and then backed down.

For an example of proper etiquette, see the video below:

That’s how fighting is different than leveling players as they touch up an icing.

As for the comment about Tootoo not coming near him for the rest of the game, I’m not surprised. Bootland only played one more shift after that so unless Tootoo buzzed the bench, he wasn’t going to be around. Had Darryl played more than a minute and a half, I’m sure the two would have found each other and maybe the results would have been different.

It’s doubtful that Bootland will get another chance at him until next season, since he should be back in Grand Rapids before the last game with the Preds, which will take place on March 29th in Nashville. Of course, he’ll have to make the Wings’ NHL roster if he wants another shot at Tootoo, as he is still only in the AHL, despite the fact that legions of fans around the League hold his brief stint with the Wings in ’03-’04 against him like he’s an NHL regular. Why he’s such a special object of hate, I don’t know, since most fans who aren’t up to speed on the AHL have rarely seen him play (whereas Tootoo has been pissing people off for his play in both leagues for three seasons). I’d say he has a pretty good chance of making it, though.

Hussey and Howard sent down

Update (5:15 PM): Ansar Khan confirms that we can expect Mikael Samuelsson and Dominik Hasek back Friday night. - Matt

According to the AHL transaction wire, Matt Hussey and Jimmy Howard have been returned to Grand Rapids. So, it looks like Mikael Samuelsson will be ready for Friday, and Dominik Hasek will at least back up Chris Osgood.

To send down Hussey rather than Darryl Bootland, the team must have been really impressed with Darryl’s effort last night. Good to see that he’ll get another game in. Bootland, by the way, had 9:15 in ice time last night, which was almost three and a half minutes more than Matt Ellis, Josh Langfeld, and Matt Hussey had combined (2:32+2:08+1:09=5:49, via the NHL’s Official Super Stats).

Hussey was originally called up after Henrik Zetterberg went down with his back injury. If the Wings were sending down the player that was covering for Samuelsson, Josh Langfeld would be driving across the state on I-96 today. They can’t send Langfeld down, however, because he wasn’t on the Griffins’ clear day roster and cannot play for them again this season.

3/5 Notes

Update (6:17 PM): TSN reports that the Wings have called up Darryl Bootland to fill in for Tomas Holmstrom. On the surface, that could make things interesting tomorrow night, when the Predators are in town, but I think it’s more likely Booter will be on a short leash. Mike Babcock is not his biggest fan. - Matt

… The Wings lost 4-3 in overtime to the Avs yesterday in one of their most uninspiring performances of the year. They looked completely flat through two periods, and though they got it going in the third period, the outcome never really seemed in doubt. Just a bad game overall, for just about everyone. The Avs’ game-winner was a the Wings’ performance in a nutshell: uncharacteristic mistakes by normally reliable players, on which Colorado easily capitalized.

Other than that, I haven’t really got a lot to say about it. See Gorilla Crouch, who’s always got good, succinct game reactions, and Abel to Yzerman, whose post I actually agree with completely, for once, if you want more.

… More great news, which actually didn’t come from the game: according to Ansar Khan, Tomas Holmstrom will be out for a couple games with an upper-body injury sustained during the third period of the Chicago game Friday night (remember how he left the game with six minutes left?). He played through it yesterday, but is now listed as day-to-day. Babcock told Khan on Saturday that there were no injuries during the game the night before. Hmm.

A forward will be called up from GR, but the wire doesn’t list anyone yet.

… Khan also says Dominik Hasek is due back later this week, which means he’ll miss tomororw’s game against the Predators, but could be back Friday night to play the Kings.

Griffins Update (12/04/06)

The tables seem to have turned for the Griffins. Between November 7 and November 17, the Griffins went winless in seven games, getting one point in an overtime loss to the Milwaukee Admirals. Since then finally winning a game on November 24 (against rival Chicago Wolves), the Griffins have gone 4-1-1. Most notably, their two most recent wins came against the then league-leading Rochester Americans (affiliate of the Buffalo Sabres), defeating them 4-2 and 4-1. Their record is now 10-10-4. The team leader in points is still Kip Miller (AHL contract), with 10 goals and 28 points, and is +1. Josh Langfeld is second with 6 goals and 18 points. The +/- leaders are Darryl Bootland and Jonathan Ericsson, both at +5. The Griffins are now fourth in the North Division, which has six teams. They are 9 points out of first in the Division, but only 1 point separates them from both third and second place. GR has 70 goals for and 76 goals against.

Stefan Liv has been the huge disappointment for the season. He was expected to adjust much faster to the North American style of play. However, at 1-5-1 and a 3.66 GAA, he has not impressed many. On November 28, he was sent down to Toledo of the ECHL. Liv was pulled from the last three games he started in GR. He has not played well, and therefore has not been given opportunities to play. Thus, they sent him to Toledo in hopes that he could adjust there and hopefully work on his game. He fell a long way from being called up to Detroit to back up Hasek. Granted, he was never expected to play in the NHL, but within one month, Liv has been with three different teams. He was recalled to Grand Rapids today. While in Toledo, Liv was 1-1-1. However, he was apparently stellar in his one win. He gave up only one goal in this game against the Trenton Titans. He did, however, give up four goals in each of his losses (4-2 and 4-3 OT). I’m not really sure if the trip did him any good.

Meanwhile in Grand Rapids, Jimmy Howard has been good. I still don’t think he’s living up to the standard he set for himself last season. At the same time, he had a much better team playing in front of him than he does now. From what I’ve seen personally, he’s doing well and developing on-schedule. He has a tendency to give up soft goals from time to time, but separates them by exciting and impressive saves. His record is now 9-7-1, with a 2.81 GAA. Jimmy played a strong game last Friday against Rochester, making 26 saves.

Derek Meech is having a very strong season, playing like we’ve been waiting for since he was brought to GR. While he hasn’t done much scoring (0-3 for 3 pts), his defense has been quite strong. He is +4, tied for third on the team. He was really good in juniors, before he was brought to Grand Rapids. However, some have said that this was mostly because he was paired with Dion Phaneuf. While I’m sure this helped him, Meech is proving to be a good defenseman on his own. This season, he’s been honored with an ‘A’ on his sweater.

Darryl Bootland has come off his mysterious 3-game healthy scratch with something to prove, apparently. He has five goals in six games (5-0-5), and is just the 8th Griffin to reach 60 career goals, many of which came last season. He also only needs 3 penalty minutes to reach 1,000. He will be the first player in franchise history to reach that mark. He could very easily do it next game, and likely will, knowing Darryl. I have to say, it’s good to see him come back this strong. I was worried for a while. Perhaps the mysterious scratch was to light a fire under his butt. The team really needs him to play well. At this point, he’s a veteran on the team.

A surprise this season has been Eric Himelfarb. He has been a notorious underachiever. I have never liked him, because of his Lilja-esque tendencies. He turns the puck over in the defensive zone, he has trouble clearing the puck, he has great speed but no puck-handling ability, he fans on every other shot…well, you get the point. Himelfarb and I don’t get along. This is just from what I’ve seen in games I’ve been to. Lately, he’s actually been…dare I say?…good! He has 3 goals and 5 assists for 8 points in 15 games (he was out with a back injury early in the season). Griffins GM Bob McNamara speaks very highly of Eric, as reported at Redwingscentral. McNamara thinks that Himelfarb is the most improved from last season. That’s not so hard to say, since only seven players returned and the majority of them seem to have taken a step backward. From going to games, however, I can agree with this. He’s actually learning how to use his speed to do something other than run goaltenders.

This weekend features a home-and-home series against the Toronto Marlies. The Marlies are currently 5th in the North division, with 22 pts (9-11-4). They are obviously the affiliates of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Grand Rapids defeated them in the playoffs last year, despite Toronto having many NHLers on the team. GR has played Toronto twice already this season, winning the first 4-2 on the road and losing the second 4-0 at home. They just beat the best team in the league twice, so that should give the Griffins some confidence. They also managed to score 4 goals in two game in a row. This is a busy month for the Griffins. Hopefully they can win a few more than they did in November.

Griffins Woes

These days, to be a Griffins fan is to be in despair. Sure, the season is still young. Sure, anything could happen. But when your team has just lost seven games in a row, with positives being few and far between, it’s hard to even hope for the playoffs. Before Grand Rapids began this skid, they were 6-3-2, not an outstanding record, but good enough for second in the division. Their last win was November 4, against Manitoba. That game was the end of a three game win-streak. Sixteen days and seven games later, the teams stands at 6-9-3, fourth in a very unimpressive division. The worst of the streak was a matinee game on November 14, an 8-1 loss to Milwaukee.

So what’s going wrong? Well, everything, apparently. While Howard hasn’t been horrible, he’s not playing like we know he can-like he did last season. Jimmy was outstanding during the playoffs, but he doesn’t have the same confidence. Liv has been terrible. He lets in weak goal after weak goal, and when he does that, it seems like the team gets frustrated and self-destructs. The offense is not scoring and the defense is not helping the goaltenders.

You can basically point to one major factor for the Griffins’ struggles. That is a lack of a top line scorer, a clutch scorer. With MacLean, Hudler and Manlow gone, Filppula was expected to fill that role. But, as we all know, he is now gone as well. That leaves Kip Miller, Matt Ellis, and Darryl Bootland with a bunch of young guys. Kip Miller is 37, and the top scorer on the team, with 18 points. Matt Ellis has 10 points in 18 games. Darryl Bootland has been mysteriously scratched recently. Before being scratched, he had 5 points and was +3. Langfeld and Kolanos are doing fairly well, both with 12 points (6-6). There is not a guy out there taking control and scoring when we need it.

Some would suggest that the team just needs to gel. After all, they have less than half the same guys as last season. However, after 18 games and many more pracitices, they should be there or close. Another part could be a lack of confidence in the goaltending. But for having no confidence, they sure do hang those guys out to dry a lot.

Another reason is pure bad luck. The bounces are not going the Griffins way. In fact, they are directly going against the Griffins. In the game on Saturday, for example, against the Chicago Wolves. In the Wolves first goal, the puck deflected off a defenseman’s stick, over Jimmy’s head, and into the net. Later, Howard made a save, but the rebound went right into Ryan Oulahen’s back and bounced into the net.

Someone needs to step up, its that simple. Whether that be Ellis (the captain), or Langfeld, or someone else, someone just has to. Personally, I think they need to bring Bootland back. I don’t know why he’s being scratched to begin with, but they sure could use him on the ice. You can blame bad bounces or the team not gelling or whatever, but after seven losses in a row (granted, one being in OT), something’s gotta change. Their next game is Friday, at home against Chicago. Hopefully they can manage a win.

Griffins Report

The start of the Griffins’ season has been just as disappointing as the start of the Red Wings’ season. Like the Wings, the Griffins are used to being at the top of the division and conference all season long. With a record of 4-3-2, they find themselves in an unfamiliar position-2nd in the Division and 6th in the conference. Now, second in the division isn’t so bad, considering that the Rochester Americans are having one of their best starts ever, at 8-1-0. Let’s also remember that the Americans are affiliated with the Buffalo Sabres. The sad thing is, being sixth in the conference puts the Griffins behind the Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights, Iowa Stars, Chicago Wolves and Peoria Rivermen. Chicago is a bitter rival (think Colorado, here) and Omaha, Iowa and Peoria were all three expansion teams last season.

Grand Rapids also seems to be sharing the Red Wings’ offensive woes. They have 28 goals for and 27 goals against, strikingly similar to the Wings’ 29 GF and 27 GA. The Griffins top scorer is Kip Miller, with 9 points (3-6). The Wings top scorer is Nicklas Lidstrom with 10 points (2-8). A few days ago I could have compared the goaltending of the two clubs, but Ozzie and Dom have since played very well.

Jimmy Howard has been good for the Griffins, at 3-2-0, with a 2.69 GAA and a .908 Save %. I wish I could say the same for Stefan Liv. His numbers aren’t terrible, with a 1-2-1 record, 3.04 GAA, and .907 save % . Granted, they could be a lot better. But numbers don’t tell the whole story. I’ve been to two games in which he played, the last of which he was pulled from. He wanders from the net frequently, and gets in trouble doing it often. Many times, his teammates save him. I’ve seen him make a save three feet out of the crease and seemingly get stuck there. Needless to say, the other team scored on the rebound. Liv has a tendency to start games well, but fall off quickly. He appears to have trouble controlling rebounds. He’s really good up close, but put someone on the breakaway and he’s sure to give up the goal. In his one shootout loss, he gave up 4 goals on 7 shooters. One guy missed the net wide, one guy shot high, and Liv stopped one. He has made some great saves, as well, though. He’ll likely get better as the season progresses, as he gets used to the AHL.

Kyle Quincey looks to be playing well, despite his -5 plus/minus. Derek Meech has made drastic improvements over last season, earning an A on his sweater. Both defensemen show a lot of promise. Quincey could probably be playing in the NHL already, on the third defensive pairing. Meech is finally starting to show the ability that the Wings kept saying he had. Jonathan Ericsson is doing well, also, with a +/- of +4 and two assists.

Of the offensive prospects, Krys Kolanos is doing the best. He has four goals and eight points. Matt Ellis is not far behind, with four goals and seven points. Kolanos also has the best +/- at +4, tied with Ericsson. Darryl Bootland is continuing to do what he does best, with 20 penalty minutes in 9 games. I’ve seen two fights already, but they haven’t been particularly good. He does, however, have two goals and two assists. Evan McGrath has one goal and three assists, but it has been his defensive play that has impressed me. Eric Himelfarb continues to prove that he is not NHL material-giving up the puck at the blueline and virtually watching as opponents score less than two feet away from him, while scoring only one goal himself. He’s fast, but he couldn’t finish a play to save his life. His puck-handling skills are in serious need of improvement-though I’m not sure how one can improve upon something that does not exist. My biggest disappointment is Ryan Oulahen right now. Ryan was phenomenal last season, but thus far has yet to be a factor for the Griffins. He has only goal and one point, with a +/- of +1.

In their last game, Grand Rapids beat the Philadelphia Phantoms 6-2. Howard was in net, and basically solidified his position as the starter. He and Liv had been splitting games evenly, but after Howard’s strong game and Liv’s struggles, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Jimmy get more games. Scoring for the Griffins were Kolanos with 2, Himelfarb, Ellis, Bootland and Matt Hussey. McGrath earned third star with three assists, while captain Ellis received second for his game-winning goal. First star went to Kolanos.

The Griffins next four games are against their biggest division rival, the Manitoba Moose. The Moose are affiliated with Vancouver, and their backup goaltender is Drew MacIntyre-former Griffin and Wing prospect. The first two games of this series are in GR, Friday and Saturday nights. Next week Tuesday and Wednesday they play in Manitoba, followed by a Friday game against the Milwaukee Admirals and a Saturday game against the Albany River Rats.

Bootland sent back to Grand Rapids

It’s bad news for the lady fans in Detroit but good news for Darryl’s large female fanclub in GR, as long as he clears waivers. Booter may have literally fought his way out of a roster spot, because the Wings could obviously use a physical presence. However, they don’t necessarily need a fighter in today’s NHL.

Update (5:49 AM): Um, I see now that Bootland did, in fact, clear waivers, in case you were worried.

Update (3:53 PM): Joe Conklin of The Grand Rapids Press has more on Bootland here.