Friday, February 23, 2007

Prime Cuts: New York Islanders 2007

You can tell a lot about a guy by his chop preference. It makes a huge impression. For example, a couple months ago, me and some buddies were at DelFrisco's. Most of us ordered NY Strips or Porterhouses, much to the delight of our waiter, Jeremy. But then one guy ordered a Filet. Now, not that there's anything wrong with a Filet, but if you're out chomping with a bunch of guys, it's kind of like ordering a glass of Pinot Grigio while everyone else is drinking Heinekens. Jeremy responded accordingly, giving the bug-eyed look of shock, followed by a sarcastic "Enjoy your strips" to the rest of the table. Classic stuff. He got a big tip.

Anyway, it's always fun to try and guess what type of chop certain people like. The classy ones will always go with the Strip or Porterhouse. The softies who tend to choke are the Filet guys, or the ones who disgrace the place by ordering lamb chops. Current location and hometown play huge roles in this, as does a number of other factors that will be touched upon.

Sporadically, we'll be giving a rundown of what we think are the chops of choice of certain teams, groups...whomever.

Up first, one of the hottest team in the NHL...YOUR...NEW...YORK...I-SLAN-DUHZ!

Rick DiPietro - Ricky D has a ways to go before he can be considered in the same class as Marty Brodeur. Needs to grow into a franchise goalie (on his way), carry the team on his back and win a Cup or two (not that close), and maybe start boning his wife's sister (not out of the realm of possibility). Still, DiPietro has the tools to become a classy stud. He's the goalie for Team USA, which is a huge plus, and can make saves that maybe two other people on the planet can pull off. Plus, he's always willing to fight or take shots at the opposition when they get too close, as evidenced by Monday's game against the Penguins. He's a Boston kid, so it's probably a safe bet that when he's back at home, he's chomping at Cap Grille and sorely misses Abe & Louie's. Stuck out on Long Island, he doesn't have a plethora of choices, but 45 minutes on the LIRR and you're at the doorstep of Sparks. CUT: NY Strip

Trent Hunter - The Isles' unsung hero. No one on the team does the little things like he does, no one hits harder, and if he played with some more skilled guys, he'd put up more points. A bit slow on the skates, but that's partially because he probably just polished off a chop. You know those big western Canadian guys love their beef, and you can be sure that a blue-collar dude like Hunter treats himself to a prime cut as much as possible. CUT: Porterhouse
Mike Sillinger - He's been on approximately 17 teams in the last 10 years, so he's well-traveled. Which means he's had the opportunity to survey chophouses all over the country. Another tough, hard-working guy, which is essential for a hockey guy. CUT: Bone-in Strip
Andy Hilbert - Born and raised in Michigan, probably pulled for the Wolverines. He's only 25, and has most likely been traveling with junior hockey teams since he was 2. Not many chances to get out and chomp. Plus, he still calls himself Andy. Very bad things. CUT: Roast beef sandwich

I mean, will someone please get Trent a Porterhouse?

Victor Kozlov - Big Vic is one of those guys who looks like he's moving slow but makes up a surprising amount of ground because of his reach. Always seems to be on the verge of making 3 or 4 plays a game, and always leaves you thinking he should've done just a little bit more. CUT: T-Bone
Miroslav Satan - Has the perfect pointed eyebrows to go along with the surname. Looks like he's a bit small and soft but is actually 6'3" and always ends up in the penalty box. Needs someone constantly to set him up because he can't take over a game despite his plentiful offensive skill. Can't figure him out. CUT: Lamb chop
Jeff Tambellini - The guy isn't even 23 years old, so you can't expect much. But certainly more promise than someone named Andy. Italian guy (I'm assuming) who grew up in Calgary. CUT: Meatball Parm Hero

Jason Blake - The definition of the guy you love to hate. And you really love him if he's on your team. Even though he's in his mid-30's, Blake's face could pass for 16 and is littered with acne. Little guy who's always willing to throw himself in the middle of the action. Would be tough to take him seriously in a place like The Palm, but he's defied the odds his whole career. CUT: Ribeye
Chris Simon - My friend LeeCee once advised me to never trust a guy with two first names. While she was apparently oblivious that this wisdom applied to the young man she was talking to at that very instant, those words ring true with this guy. Not much of an offensive threat, and he hasn't been all that tough even though he's supposed to be a tough guy. If a guy's on the ice and constantly gives you the feeling that you can't wait until the shift is over because you know the crew on the ice isn't gonna score, that can't be a good thing. CUT: Philly Cheesesteak
Randy Robitaille - Has a name that could probably roll in the opening credits of a bad porno. Pretty underwhelming player, who plays with the puck waaaay too much, especially on the power-play. With that in mind, he probably also eats at the same pace as my buddy Jaypo. CUT: Flank

Aaron Asham - I swear that this guy is an Eskimo. And I certainly wouldn't want to F with him. Big plus for a 90+ mph shot. CUT: Buffalo, rare
Steve Park - Absolutely no offensive skill, this guy is the bankrupt man's Selke winner. CUT: Grilled Salmon
Frans Nielsen - Young kid who hails from Denmark, so he may have no clue what a chop even is. Cut: Beef burrito from T-Bell

Tom Poti - Big, solid defenseman. Negative points that he's a masshole who hails from Woostah, but Poti still has a seat at the table with DP, Hunter, and Sillinger. CUT: NY Strip
Brendan Witt - Hands down, the trashiest Islander, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. He's got everyone's back, and is one of those defensemen who always seems to be there to clear the puck at the right time or make a deflection. That being said, if tries to take a step into Smith & Wollensky, they're throwing his ass out. Probably the leading candidate to chomp with Chet Stedman. CUT: Salisbury Steak

Witt's a good guy to have on your team, but he's not a classy chomper

Chris Campoli - Young kid who has some promise but just doesn't totally get it yet. Probably thinks he's a little classier than he really is. CUT: Prime Rib
Marc-Andre Bergeron - French-Canadian guy who caught a tough break when his parents decided to hyphenate his first name. Must have been brutal growing up. If he can help out the Islanders power-play, then we'll give him and upgrade. CUT: Tuna Steak
Freddy Meyer - Kid from New Hampshire. Wonder if he used to hang out in ManchVegas a lot as a kid. Have a sneaky suspicion that Poti has taken him under his wing and gives some chomping advice. CUT: NY Strip, but the kid still insists on well-done (he'll learn)
Sean Hill - Another grizzled veteran, who's been around and has the experience. He rounds out our featured table. CUT: Bone-in Strip

Alexei Yashin - Pound for pound, dollar for dollar, probably the most disappointing athlete in team sports. Sucks that we're stuck pretending to root for this guy for five more years. Sure, he dates Carol Alt. Sure, he's got a ton of talent. But no Isle fan will ever forgive him for botching those breakaways against the Leafs in '02, or for the countless other soulless efforts he's put forth since. CUT: Filet Mignon, petite
Shawn Bates - Used to see Bates and a handful of other Islanders out all the time at Monterey's bar back in college. Would always be scrounging for some trashy Long Island bunny, and was pretty successful. Oleg Kvasha tried to do the same. He was not. CUT: Ribeye


Anonymous said...

You don't touch on what it means for a person when they go "Medium Rare" as opposed to "Medium Well", etc... Please spread the knowledge!

Just Chompin' said...

Medium rare and Medium well refer to how the steak is cooked. Obviously medium rare is cooked for a shorter time, leaving you with a red center, and generally keeping more of the juice and flavor.

Margee said...

Sorry, buddy, Witt eats raw flesh fromthe living cow. It's how he rolls. And Yashin is a vegan. Like all good-hearted, pussy-footed people.