With the transition from Adriano “I’m So Outta Here” Bratta to Tim “What Have I Got Myself In To?” Brown, we start a new chapter in the league’s history. In addition to Tim, we’ve got a new head ref (hi Bill!), a new commitment to the ACE bar (see you there tonight) and a brand, spanking-new website design (more on that later).
But that doesn’t mean everything has changed. We’ll still be bringing you weekly previews and Team Previews (starting April 1st) as usual. But with all the regime change taking place, a number of Captains have taken advantage of the confusion. They’re plotting Machievellan trades, rule changes, and other schemes in an effort to give themselves the X factor that will secure them the coveted PBR cup. Our reporters are working tirelessly to get the inside scoop on all these back-room deals. In the meantime, we’ll share what little we know in this weeks game previews …
Gut Rot at Gremlins
East- 12:00 PM
The questions start here: What color will Gut Rot wear for their inaugural game? Will Gutrot Captain Jeff “Peaches” Hendricks wear clothes at all? And is it true that Bill Tucker will be singing a mix of gospel and jazz favorites to get his team going before every game? Is that why the ubiquitous TSP saxophone player has been joined by a trumpet guy, Bill? Also, who’s on the Gremlins this year? So many questions.
Corlears Hookers at What The Puck
West- 12:00 PM
Hookers Goalie Dustin had the line of the year at last week’s Captain’s meeting: “As everyone on the Hookers knows, how you do in the regular season has no impact on the playoffs.” Expect the baby Habs to phone it in for the first 16 weeks or so before coming on strong in week 17 and making a major push in the playoffs. In the meantime, if their numbers look thin this week, it’s probably because they’re busy winning another Moffo championship. With BTSH Daycare still not in place, WTP may also struggle with attendance. With the Circus at the Barclay’s center expect Michelle and Romeo to have to play this one pretty much on their own.
Gouging Anklebiters at Rehabs
East- 1:00 PM
Interesting matchup here as the Anklebiters go up a division and the Rehabs slide down one. Rumor has it that the Anklebiters lost a lot of their female players in the off-season. But they’ve still retained the offensive core and strong goaltending that won them a division title last year. Meanwhile, the Rehabs finished the 2012 regular season strong. Playing in a lower division may be just the ticket to restore their confidence and return them to their former status as one of the most feared teams in the league. And Kehoe has to graduate college at some point, right?
Mathematics at Dark Rainbows
West- 1:00 PM
Something happened to Math in the off-season. Apparently every player on their team now has the last name Norris. There are three theories about this:
1) Team Captain Derek has spent a fortune on genetic engineering and cloned last year’s Rookie-of-the-Year winner Zack Norris. 2) Zack is actually part of the cast of the new TLC show “Nineteen Norrises and Counting.”
3) It’s a Ramones-type-thing designed to confuse referees and opponents.
Longtime Math stalwart Andy “Pratt” Norris has already debunked the last theory. Expect none of this to phase the Rainbows who have rebounded from last year’s rebuilding phase and are continuing to bring a mix of Zen and 70’s era Soviet hockey to the League.
Denim Demons at Poutine Machine
East- 2:00 PM
Speaking of rebuilding, last year started off in chaos for Demons Captain Adam Rubens. But as the regular season wound down, it was clear that he’s whipped his raw recruits in to a side to be reckoned with. This year, it’s Poutine that’s facing rebuilding issues, with five new players on the roster and veterans like Dave “Pags” Paglia and Dave “Special L” Kucharsky moving on to other locales. Expect Poutine to be figuring out who is the gravy and who is the cheese curds for much of this game.
Filthy Gorgeous at Happy Little Elves
West- 2:00 PM
There’s a surprising amount of enmity between these two teams. For the Filthys, it comes down to the fact that the Elves stole Filthy’s signature neon green color scheme when they formed their team. Sure, FG had retired that particular look at the time. But, as the fashionistas of FG know, every look comes back in style eventually. Meanwhile, the Elves seem to dislike Filthy for some other mysterious reason. We can’t really talk about it here but a look at previous season’s game results might provide a clue …
Cobra Kai at Butchers
East- 3:30 PM
The good news for the dojo is star player Rem is finally healthy. Is he the Andrei Markov type player that turns the Kais from last year’s Habs to this year’s version? We’re not sure. But we do know the Butchers won’t care. Half of them are probably still on a ski trip somewhere.
Fresh Kills at LBS, Inc.
West- 3:30 PM
After coming up short in the Finals, Captain Dave Soko was a major player in the bidding for free agent Alexander Semin. But after failing to convince Sasha that even an NYC street hockey team was better than playing hockey in Carolina, the Czar decided to stick with the same lineup that has won him two championships in three years. It’s not a bad strategy, given that the average age of his players his 25 (when calculating medians Scott Lee and Kevin Foster pretty much cancel each other out). Lbs. seem to be pursuing the same strategy but their average age might be tracking a little bit higher. Still, they’re the defending champs and should be able to give the Kills kids a game. Just make sure to have plenty of ICY HOT available after the game, ok, Ken?
Mega Touch at Tompkins Square Riots
East- 4:30 PM
AKA the Mellow Bowl. Two of the chillest teams in BTSH go head to head in a game that numerous commentators have described as “That should be nice.” Will shedding the responsibilities of league commissioner bring new life to Adriano “It’s Not My Problem Anymore” Bratta’s offensive game? It’s unclear at press time. But if he yells “You need to talk to Timmy!’ after his first goal, opposing teams should be worried.
La Famiglia at Sky Fighters
After selling his multiple DVR solution to the Dish network, Skyfighters Captain Dan has vowed to use the money to return the Sky Fighters to championship status. Whether that means going on a free-agent spending spree or simply purchasing Czech language lessons for the rest of the team is unclear. Sky Fighters may have an army of talented players, but Famiglia has a Dennis. And if THE AVENGERS has taught us nothing, we should at least know how this one will turn out.