The 2019 NHL playoffs are here and round one is already delivering, between the Blue Jackets' historic sweep of the Lightning, Alex Ovechkin's fight with a 19-year-old and multiple close series on the ice. In addition to a number of other topics on their most recent Most Valuable Podcast, Charlotte Wilder and Jessica Smetana talk hockey, including the Ovi knockout and the melodramatic tweet Tampa Bay sent out after its brutal Game 4 loss.
(Listen to Most Valuable Podcast here. The following transcript has been edited and condensed for clarity.)
Charlotte: Should we talk about the NHL playoffs?
Jessica: Yeah. Let’s talk about hockey.
Charlotte: Because I've been obsessed
Jessica: They’ve been good this year.
Charlotte: It's been so much fun. Let's see, the Blue Jackets swept the Lightning who had tied for the best regular season record of all time by winning 62 games. And then they lost every single game in the playoffs. Like, what?!
Jessica: This was penciled in as an easy easy first round win for Tampa. No one thought this was even gonna go to six or seven games, let alone that they were gonna get swept by Columbus.
Charlotte: Hockey playoff brackets across America are just busted.
Jessica: The playoff bracket that we’re in? 40 people out of the 70 had Tampa winning.
Charlotte: Oh my god. I mean, I had Tampa making it to the Cup. I think I had Flames beating Tampa.
Jessica: Yeah, and the Flames are down two games right now I think, but still.
Charlotte: The tweet though —
Jessica: About John Tortellini?
Charlotte: No. We’ll get to that. O.K. actually, you know what, yeah. Let's do that one first. So throughout the playoffs as Columbus has been playing Tampa, you have you have had an ongoing incredible bit that I'm really here for.
Jessica: It's not a bit, I'm just tweeting the coach's name whenever they play. He has a good name.
Charlotte: What is it?
Jessica: John Tortellini. Yeah, it's not a bit.
Charlotte: His brother, I've said this before—
Jessica: His brother coached at Harvard and to used coach Colby. His name is Jim Tortellini. That's an incredible name. I like Jim Tortellini better than John Tortellini, I think.
Charlotte: Yeah, Jim Torts. Jimmy Torts.
Jessica: Yeah. Torts is one of the losingest coaches in the NHL, like, he sucks, he's never won anything.
Charlotte: Did you see after that once the once they swept the Lighting a fan poured beer over the glass onto to his head?
Jessica: Shut up, no!
Charlotte: Yes, it was the funniest thing I've ever seen. And after John's laughing, it’s the most hockey thing ever—the fan is in a suit, pours beer on the coach's head, and then slams on the glass like, “We did it!” And John Tortellini is just so excited to win, he doesn't even care. Afterwards at the at the press conference he is like, “Yeah, someone poured beer on my head!”
Jessica: This is John Tortellini’s Super Bowl, like, this is big.
Charlotte: It doesn't matter what happens next.
Jessica: I actually like Artemi Panarin because he used to play on the Blackhawks and everyone called him the Bread Man. They still do, but he’s one of my favorite young hockey players right now. And so I wish him the best. So I'm I think I'm jumping on the Columbus Tortellini bandwagon.
Charlotte: I think [I would], but I mean, the Bruins are still in it. Although they’re down one, it’s not lookin’ too good.
Jessica: They can still win it.
Charlotte: The first round yeah the game on Monday night was very frustrating.
Jessica: I'm just rooting for a Barry Trotz–Capitals rematch in the second round. And then a Tortellini–Trots Western Conference Final would be…
Charlotte: Yes, that's what we want. But we have to talk about that tweet that the Lightning put out after they lost.
Jessica: It was so embarrassing.
Charlotte: I literally can't stop thinking about this tweet. It goes—
Jessica: Okay wait, we should preface this by saying this is the team's Twitter account after they just got swept. This is what they're tweeting. Of all the things they could tweet, they tweet this.
Charlotte: After losing four hockey games in a row, they tweet: “We don't have any words, and we know you don't want to hear them. We understand your anger, your frustration, your sadness. Everything you're feeling—em dash—we get it. This isn't the ending we imagined and certainly not the one we wanted. Thank you for being there the entire way.”
Jessica: That's just bats--- crazy. That's just way too serious of a tweet. That's like, that's just way too much.
Charlotte: That's like if The Notebook played hockey and had a Twitter account.
Jessica: Did Nicholas Sparks write this tweet?
Charlotte: Like this is like Nicholas Sparks fanfic for hockey.
Jessica: Can we add some sad like violin music in post?
Producer Brandon: It's not in the budget as of yet.
Jessica: Brandon, give us a budget. Well, okay, the tweet is entirely too much.
Charlotte: I'm so glad they did it though.
Jessica: Me too.
Charlotte: It's bringing me real joy. It's like a mom tweeting. This is the same as a parent tweeting.
Jessica: Right, it’s like, “You're embarrassing me, Mom!”
Charlotte: Right. Imagine the players going on Twitter and seeing their team tweeted that and being like, “What?! You don't speak for me!”
Jessica: Speaking of the Lightning, remember when Ben Bishop pooped his pants during the Stanley Cup finals?
Charlotte: No. Did that happen? When was that?
Jessica: Like, 2015 against the Blackhawks.
Charlotte: Oh, it's so sad, it makes me sad, I don’t like that.
Jessica: It was pretty funny. Why is that sad?
Charlotte: Because it's so embarrassing. It’s also just gross.
Jessica: He was fine! But anyways, we have to talk about Alexander Ovechkin because he's on the hot seat, I guess, for beating the s--- out of a 19-year-old.
Jessica: Andrei Svechnikov.
Charlotte: How old is Ovi, 32, 33? He beat up a 19-year-old kid.
Jessica: 19-year-old kid? This is a grown man.
Charlotte: He beat up another hockey player.
Jessica: But also this is a grown man who grew up in Russia, so if you're 19 and you grow up in Russia you're basically—
Jessica: Like, a grizzled 35-year-old.
Charlotte: He had to get taken out into concussion protocol, or he hit his head on the ice. If you’re going after Ovi you gotta know what you're getting into.
Jessica: Well, Ovi doesn’t fight! He hasn't fought in like years, like maybe almost 10 years!
Charlotte: Well then you had to know he was about to snap at some point. This was the straw, or the hit, that broke the camel's back.
Jessica: Yeah, Ovi isn't known for this, so this guy probably did something extreme to get under his skin.
Charlotte: I agree. He hit a nerve.
Jessica: And then Ovi literally hit a nerve, the nerve called his brain. And then Svechnikov’s brother posted a threat on his Instagram. It was an Instagram story and it said, “One, two, Freddy's coming for you.” Apparently he dressed as Freddy Krueger for Halloween, so it's a callback to his creepy Freddy Krueger costume. That's what I read.
Charlotte: Okay, so what's what's worse, your mom tweeting something embarrassing or your brother tweeting something embarrassing?
Jessica: Well, I don't have a brother.
Charlotte: Okay, so I guess sibling or parent. I think sibling is worse.
Jessica: No, if it's my sibling they’re probably are more in tune with what I'm thinking. They're probably more on my level thought-wise. For example, in the Carrie Underwood thing, my sister was posting s--- on her Facebook about it being like, “Haha, my sister is in a fight with Carrie Underwood, LMFAO this is hilarious.” And I was like yeah, that's appropriate. If it was my mom, she'd have been like, “My poor daughter Jessica is getting made fun of by Carrie Underwood,” you know what I mean?
Charlotte: I meant more like, if your sibling posts something embarrassing that you don't like, that's the reason that it's more embarrassing because they should be on the same page. If it's your parents, you can be like, “Oh, you know, they don't get the internet.”
Jessica: Yeah. O.K., I can see that.
Charlotte: You know, unless unless Svechnikov [to his brother] is like, “Hey, post this.”
Jessica: Yeah, like, “Put out a mob hit on Alexander Ovechkin.” Is he going to get fined for his brother threatening Ovechkin now?
Charlotte: I don’t know, I don't know that I don't know if there's precedent for this?
Jessica: I'm sure there is. It’s hockey. I’m sure there is.