April 11 – Penalty Shot

Line Dancing

As hockey fans around the world gear up for the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Sip Advisor thought it might be a good time to look at some of the sport’s greatest line combos. This list was narrowed down by taking into account the success of the line, as well as how awesome the name they were given was. Let’s get the puck rolling:

#5: West Coast Express – Brendan Morrison, Markus Naslund, Todd Bertuzzi

After a string of dismal years, Vancouver Canucks fans finally had something to cheer about again, when this line began filling the back of the net and piling up points. Once put together, each enjoyed the best years of their career, with Naslund and Bertuzzi even finishing second and third in league scoring during the 2002-03 season. Sadly, a long-awaited Stanley Cup never materialized, thanks in part to Bertuzzi’s indefinite suspension, after punching Colorado Avalanche forward Steve Moore in the back of the head. The West Coast Express is actually a commuter train line in the Sip Advisor’s home area, connecting people living in the suburbs of Vancouver to the downtown core.

West Coast Express Canucks

#4: Capital Punishment Line – Daniel Alfredsson, Jason Spezza, Dany Heatley

Playing in the Canadian capital of Ottawa, the Senators enjoyed their greatest success as a franchise on the backs of Alfredsson, Spezza, and Heatley. The trio took the Senators all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2007, but they were defeated by the Anaheim Ducks in five games. The three stars were also given the nickname ‘The Pizza Line’ thanks to the Pizza Pizza chain offering to give away free slices to ticket holders, anytime the Senators scored at least five goals. With the line racking up points that season, it happened often. Ironically, Canada abolished capital punishment in 1976… I guess this threesome never got the news!

#3: Legion of Doom – Eric Lindros, John Leclair, Mikael Renberg

For a time, Lindros was the most dominant player in the game, utilizing his size, strength, and natural talent. Flanking him on the wings were Leclair and Renberg, who each enjoyed great seasons playing with ‘The Big E’. The line combined for 305 goals and 361 assists over three season, highlighted by a Stanley Cup Finals appearance in 1997. The line’s name was created (or at least borrowed) by teammate Jim Montgomery, before being used and promoted by Flyers announcer Gene Hart. While they weren’t as successful as the Broad Street Bullies of the 1970’s, the Legion of Doom ushered in a new generation of Flyers dominance.

legion-of-doom-flyers

#2: Red Army – Sergei Fedorov, Igor Larionov, Vyacheslav Kozlov, Vladimir Konstantinov, Viacheslav Fetisov

As if three forwards weren’t enough, imagine icing an entire five-man unit that could cohesively work together and dominate the opposition. All hailing from Russia and formerly starring for that country’s national team, the Red Army had been built by Red Wings coach, Scotty Bowman, who had always admired the USSR’s playing style. The gamble worked out well for Detroit, as the team won the Stanley Cup in 1997 and repeated the feat in 1998. Sadly, Konstantinov was not part of the second championship, as just days after the 1997 win, he was involved in a serious auto wreck, which ended his career. The only thing missing was a Russian goaltender to complete the on-ice sweep.

#1: Trio Grande – Bryan Trottier, Mike Bossy, Clark Gillies

When New York Islanders coach Al Arbour combined these three young, highly-touted players in 1977, it’s what would eventually push them over the edge and produce a four-year Stanley Cup dynasty. The line combined for 668 goals and 1498 points, throughout the years, piling up trophies, team records, and other accolades, during that time. Both Trottier and Bossy would win the Conn Smythe trophy as playoff MVP (1980 and 1982, respectively), proving the line was also quite productive in the crunch time that is the playoffs. All three members of the line have had their numbers retired by the Islanders and been inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Penalty Shot

Penalty Shot Shooter

  • 0.25 oz Blue Curacao
  • 0.25 oz Gin
  • 0.25 oz Tequila
  • 0.25 oz Citron Vodka
  • Pinch of Cinnamon
  • Garnish with a Cinnamon Stick

Honourable mentions go to the French Connection (Gilbert Perreault, Rick Martin, Rene Robert), the Triple Crown Line (Dave Taylor, Charlie Simmer, Marcel Dionne), and That 70’s Line (Jeff Carter, Tyler Toffoli, Tanner Pearson). While not making up a complete line, one of the most prolific scoring duos in hockey history, Brett Hull and Adam Oates, were given the nickname Hull and Oates, a play on the musical act Hall and Oates… too bad neither of them rocked a great 80’s porn stache!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
This shooter had a nice blue colour until I added the dash of Cinnamon and then it all turned into a fuzzy green hue… I think it still looks okay, though. I used a Cinnamon Stick for garnish to imitate a good ol’ fashioned wooden hockey stick. As for taste, this all came together like a Long Island Iced Tea, just miniaturized. And that’s a drink that goes down easy.

July 5 – Evil Minion

Despicable You

Through the course of history, there’s been some real low-down, dirty, appalling tactics employed by people and groups. I have taken it upon myself to expose these despicable degenerates. Together, we can stand up to these scumbags and make sure bad stuff like this never happens again. Are ya with me!?

Airlines that Overbook Flights

This is the most absolute bullshit thing in the world. To turn away a paying customer and tell them “Sorry, the flight is full” should be punishable by death. I remember flying out of Toronto once (one of the worst airports in the world) and approaching the agent because I hadn’t been assigned a seat. She told me the plane was overbooked and I might not get on and if I really wanted to make sure I was on the plane I had paid for, next time I should pay the $30 extra for an assigned seat… Excuse me? Did I not already pay over $500 for this exact itinerary? If that’s the case, I better receive compensation and be guaranteed a spot on your next scheduled departure. Nothing like that was offered. This concept has ruined many vacations for people who don’t deserve this shoddy treatment. Go screw yourselves Air Canada and any other line that pulls this crap with its passengers!

overbooked flight

Disneyworld Guests Hiring Handicap People to Jump Queues

I still can’t figure out if I deplore these people because they’re line jumping, usually ahead of me (a frequent Disney traveler), or if I commend the employees for his or her entrepreneurial spirit. Scratch that, I hate them. I think these people should be stripped of their disability payments, since they’re making more money than the average person and get to spend time at the happiest place on earth while doing so. Even worst are the people who hire them. Shame on all of you!

People Who Take Advantage of Tragedies

It seems every time one of these disasters (9/11, BP Gulf Coast Spill, Hurricane Sandy, the Boston Marathon Bombing, etc.) takes place, stories eventually come to light of people trying to exploit the victims and heartbreak of the situation for their own financial gain. Whether it’s people setting up fake charitable organizations or committing other crimes, such as looting, in the middle of the chaos, it’s just not cool.

Ponzi Scheme Operators

This includes losers like Bernie Madoff, who bilked numerous investors out of millions of dollars. Many people walk away from these schemes with their entire life savings destroyed and for those who were relying on that money heading into retirement, it’s a bitter pill to swallow knowing the comfortable golden years you were expecting to experience have evaporated right in front of you.

Madoff behind bars

Reality Show Producers

I was recently flipping through the channels and stopped at the show ‘Extreme Weight Loss’. I didn’t stay for long, however, as the poor kid trying to drop massive pounds was basically mocked as he was told he may have a brain tumour, with a sound effect where they slowed down the voice of the doctor giving him the news, as if the kid couldn’t process what was happening. All the while, the cameras never stopped rolling and made sure to get tight and close for facial reactions of the devastating news that the 23-year-old kid had to receive without any family there to console him. And this is just one example from a totally rotten industry.

Talentless Celebrities

We’re talking about your Kim Kardashians, Paris Hiltons, and Snookies of the world. What pisses me off about them is that they influence so much of culture and in such negative ways. People, especially young girls, want to follow in the footsteps of their idols, but that just means they want to come from a family of means, do nothing but shop for all the high-end designer items, or have no reason for being famous except for “leaked” sex tapes. And we’ll have a whole new line of them coming with the current crop of celebrity kids. Yikes!

Bullies

With all the anti-bullying programs that are in operation now, schools that are taking different approaches with troubled kids, and parents becoming more aware of the issue, hopefully this will eventually be a problem that it eradicated. Until then, we can still try and put as much shame as possible on these folks, hoping they realize the error of their ways. It will be hard to complete eliminate the bully, as we see it in so many forms of media today, from a “news” host like Nancy Grace who berates anyone who doesn’t agree with her to “real housewives” who don’t play well with others and behave quite rudely towards people, despite being in the public eye.

bully-comeback

Protestors

I hate most protestors with a passion. Unless they’re trying to change something like civil rights, I have no time for them. The violent Black Bloc, who spend more time destroying public property than actually trying to get a message across and the heinous Westboro Baptist Church, which has even protested at high-profile funerals in the name of attention-seeking, are among the lowest of the low.

Corporations That Hide Cures

There is more money to be made from the sick than the healthy. That is a sad, but true fact. Rumours and conspiracy theories have often surfaced that some corporations are hiding the cure to various diseases and viruses because it would wipe out their business of treating an illness gradually. If there are cases for which this is true, shame on the companies. Just think of all the pain and suffering that could be ended with their full disclosure.

Drink #186: Evil Minion

Evil Minion Cocktail

  • 1.5 oz Citrus Vodka (I used Pinnacle)
  • 0.5 oz Strawberry Liqueur
  • 0.5 oz Blue Curacao
  • Top with Sweet & Sour Mix
  • Splash of Club Soda
  • Garnish with Lemon Wheel

Writing this post reminded me how much I love the movie Despicable Me. Thankfully, Despicable Me 2 comes out today, allowing me to enjoy more animated goodness. Here’s hoping the second installment is as good as the first!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
I like these sour citrus drinks. They are so refreshing in the summer and this was no different. While I usually find Club Soda boring, it was nice to have some fizz with these delicious flavours and have them not competing with each other. The end result was a lemonade type cocktail.