Sunday Conversation: What I’ve Learned. What I Predict.


The preseason games are finally over, and now the boys must just concentrate on things like their x’s and o’s.  Get the lead out, and prepare for the real thing.  Our season prediction will be posted tomorrow as promised.  A collective effort from all of us here at The Rat Trick.  Before we post that however, I thought I’d give you a few things to discuss.

What I’ve learned

The summer is long:  Growing up in Chicago we used to call it the dog days of summer.  The Cubs were usually out of the pennant race  by August, and I wasn’t a White Sox fan, so there wasn’t much to cheer about.  Thank goodness there were some years the Orioles made some noise for me.  These past couple months seemed to take forever to pass.  I love baseball, but when your teams are so far out of it, it’s hard to pay attention.  Thank goodness October is here.  September did end with a bang by the “Birds” knocking the Red Sox out of contention!

The preseason isn’t all that important: Don’t put too much stock into preseason games.  Players are trying to dust themselves off, get the kinks out, and not get hurt.  Some people get all wound up about loses, and how the team and certain players look.  It’s called training camp for a reason.

The wonderful social media tool called Twitter:  I have made a ton of great friends using Twitter.  I have met some of you as well, and I’m glad for that.  If used properly it’s a great way to communicate, keep up with trades, signings, and scores.  It’s also not the place to have a “bitch” session.  Too many clients and friends follow me.  Try to goad me into a nasty argument? The Cubs will win a World Series first.

My true colors: Some of you may think I’m too much of a Chicago Blackhawks fan.  I am.  I lived there for 31 years, and that’s hard to let go of.  Some of you can’t tell if I really am a Florida Panthers fan.  I am.  I can do both.  I hope you’re ok with that.

Rebuilding isn’t easy:  You need to start somewhere, and there are difficult decisions to make.  Releasing and or trading popular players is sometimes hard, but necessary.  When you have the right people in place to get the job done, be patient.  It doesn’t happen overnight.  For the first time in a few years, we have the right people in place.

The players care:  While I can’t speak for every athlete on the planet, these guys are professional.  They want to win, and want to give their best performance all the time.  Sure some players are lazy and don’t care, but that’s probably less than 10%.  The key is to get them off your team.

Puck Possession Hockey:  When we have the puck more than you.  We have more opportunities to score, and you don’t.  Execute that and it’s pretty simple.  We win more than we lose.  Look for that this season.

Brian Campbell makes us better in so many ways:  Watch him skate, pass, and control the play.  This guy has a ton of class, as well as skill.  This will become one of Dale’s best off season moves.  Rostislav who?

Jacques Martin:  Had no business being a general manager.  We’ve pretty much rid ourselves of everything he did, and guess what? We will be much better because of it.

What I Predict

Kris VERSTEEG will score at least 25 goals this season, and probably more.  By the end of the year, you won’t know if you should call him VERSTEEG, STEEGER or VerBeauty.

Will Jonathan Huberdeau make the team? We need his skill, his vision, and his hockey sense.  Attributes that have been missing from this team.  I say yes, provided he can get a contract signed.

Should you trust Jose Theodore?  To play 50-55 games and win 25 to 28 of them. Yes.  He’s better than what you’ve seen, and he knows it.  Remember, it’s the preseason.

What kind of year will David Booth have?  With better teammates surrounding him, I don’t see why he can’t get close to 30 goals this season.

Will Erik Gudbranson live up to the billing?  He has the tools, the smarts, and the character to be a leader someday.  Being paired with Ed Jovanovski wasn’t done on accident.

How many 20 goal scorers will we have? Six.  Booth, VERSTEEG! Flash, Upshall, Santorelli, and WeissBergenheim gets close with 18.

When does Kevin Dineen hold his first bag skate? Tuesday November 1st.  Just a hunch.

Will Rat Trick Radio be a success?  I’m not going to brag, but I think it is.

Will the members of The Rat Trick have some fun stuff for you this year?  You betcha! Maybe even a viewing party or two!

Will Little Miss Rat Trick have a special prom date this year?  I would just drop dead if her wish came true.

Will this be our goal song for the season?  I hope so.  If it is, stop by and buy me a beer.

Do I predict a playoff spot this year?  Check back on Monday for our collective season prediction. ( I know. Tease)

As always thanks for reading. We welcome your comments and opinions.

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Follow the Rat Pack on Twitter: me @TheRatTrick , David Lasseter @davidlasseter , Josh Luecht @joshluecht, Patrick McLaughlin @patrckmclaughln , Scott Mullin @ScottFMullin, Cameron Tahernia @Lord_Panther, and Yuri Peralta @FlaPanthersGirlAlso, please join our Facebook Fan Page and hit the like button, send us photos, and make some comments.