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Photo: @JPughNBC4

It’s going to be a long, wet, hot, hockeyless summer. The way we see it, you have two choices:

  1. Spend the next five months (FIVE MONTHS, REALLY?!) in some dark corner balled up in the fetal positioning mumbling about perimeter shots.
  2. Do fun/stupid stuff to take your mind off how sad and lonely you are without hockey.

The latter seems preferable from a mental health perspective, and we’re here to help! In partnership with the fine folks at RMNB, we’re proud to present the First Annual Brouwer Pouwer Generic-Photograph-Manipulation-Software Skills Contest™.

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tom-wilson-signed-rmnb-shirt

In our first segment on CRL– let’s not mince words– I got my butt kicked by Tom Wilson in a game of NHL14. The stakes went like this: if I lost, Willy Baby would be the face of RMNB for a week, and if I won, Wilson had to sign something for me to give to you guys.

I lost. Bad. But because Tom has a heart, he autographed an RMNB t-shirt anyway. One lucky dude who shared our segment on Facebook will get the very last RMNB portrait shirt on the face of the earth.

Problem: I didn’t know how to pick a winner impartially. Sure, I have a TI-83 and I know how to generate a random number, but I’m not Neil. I had to solve this my way.

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We all remember last summer’s extinction-level crisis known as Fat-Gatebut if we think back hard enough, there were some good moments too. Like the time when Alex Ovechkin signed on to be the new spokesman for Cadbury’s Mr. Big Bar.

In a series of wacky commercials, the Russian machine demystified the legend that is Alexander Mikhaylovich Ovechkin and showed us all how to “Be big deal like me!” As part of a contest, Ovechkin made the impossible possible and suffered through a dinner with common folk. Aw, look how happy those two are.

Good news, you guys. Mr. Big Bar announced Thursday on their Facebook page that the contest lives on. This year, one lucky winner will have a chance to meet The Great Eight in one of these four cities: New York City, Washington DC, Los Angeles, and Chicago. All you need to do to enter is like Mr. Big’s fan page (like ours too while you’re at it) and then enter the UPC of a Mr. Big Bar here. The contest page looks like this:

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Ovi after he got pie’d in the face last year on his birthday. (Photo credit: Chris Gordon)

Fellow RMNB’ers, mark your calendars! In exactly one week, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin will turn 27 years-old.

To celebrate the occasion, we’d like to continue a tradition we started a few years ago wherein you, our faithful and slightly demented readers, make homemade birthday cards for the Russian machine himself.

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RMNB’s 2012 Trade Deadline Contest

These could be yours!

Update: Congratulations to Alan Campbell who correctly guessed “No trades.” Thanks to everyone who participated. That was fun, minus the whole nobody getting traded to our team part.

Original Post: With the trade deadline rapidly approaching, we wanted to once again try to put a little fun into the most stressful day of the hockey year. Here’s the deal. You guess the time (without going over) on when the Caps make their first trade of the day on our Facebook Fan Page (i.e. 11:22 AM) and if you are the first person to get the time right or are the closest without going over, you win this signed Mike Knuble “Be A Player” Rookie Card, a game-used Mike Green jersey card, and a game-used Alex Semin jersey card (pictured to the right).

You have until either 10 AM EST to submit your picks, or when GMGM makes his first move, whichever comes first.

Fine print: You must like our Facebook Fan Page and follow us on Twitter (@RussianMachine) to win. There will be only one – I repeat – one winner. If you pick the same time as someone else, the person who guessed the time earlier will win. You may pick “none” (as in “no trades”), but you must be the first person to guess it to win. Also, keep in mind that the trade deadline is Monday at 3pm, and many trades will be reported after that time as they come in. Finally, we will use the first media member to tweet the deal as the official trade announcement time.

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RMNB Readers Present Their Caps Christmas Cards

We issued a challenge, oh faithful users of the Russian Machine, to create Caps-themed Christmas cards. The only rule: use an inferior graphics program or blingee.com to make it.

What we avoided telling you — just like my parents who took 14 years to come clean to me about the whole Santa thing (he IS real) — was that we didn’t have to follow the same rules. Above, is our holiday card by RMNB’s house illustrator, Rachel Cohen.

Meanwhile, you guys rocked this assignment harder than a Dmitry Orlov hip check. Though, to be honest, some of these submissions might land you on Santa’s naughty list once I post this. I apologize beforehand. Cruise on past the jump to check out the gallery and see what I mean.

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RMNB Needs Your Capitals-Themed Christmas Cards

We’re a hopelessly gimmicky blog. There are certain standards to which we hold ourselves:

  1. If the Capitals are losing and we have no idea what to write about, it’s okay to post an article which consists only of baby animal videos.
  2. When any member of the Capitals organization is spotted with someone on Jersey Shore, we must write about it.
  3. During any holiday, we must solicit artwork from our readers because a) you guys do more creative stuff than we can, and b) we are desperate for non-Kuznetsov content.

So with eight-pound, six-ounce baby Jesus’s birthday only six days away, we need your Capitals-themed Christmas cards and quick! We prefer that you create your cards using a primitive graphics program like MS Paint, Adobe Photoshop 3.0, or gluing macaroni on construction paper. We want cards for all religions. After all, Jeff Halpern and the Puck Buddys are Jewish, and Jason Chimera  (11 G, 6 A) obviously has a deal with the devil.

Mail your submission to thecrew@russianmachineneverbreaks.com by 5pm on Friday. We’d prefer if they’re jpegs. And for those of you who are too scared to submit, take solace in the fact that we’ll pretty much post anything. Weird youtubes of your kids dancing, pictures of an Ovechtree. Ornaments. Seriously, anything. Well, as long as it’s not super crude.

Get crackin’. We can’t wait to see what you guys come up with this year!

Win Seats to Capitals vs. Penguins on December 1st

Esteemed pest control company, American Pest, protects your home from all kind of varmint. Let’s — hypothetically– say you cooked up two trays of red Jello shots for the playoffs and then accidentally left them out on your counter with a nearby window open, and then ants roughly equal in number to the cast of Ben-Hur began an occupation of your kitchen. American Pest can help.

American Pest is also a Washington Capitals sponsor, and they’re running  a contest whereby you can win tickets to the Capitals-Penguins game on December 1st. The contest, in all its byzantine logic, is described below:

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Happy Halloween from RMNB and Our Readers

Sheepvechkin

Sheepvechkin! (Illustration by Rachel Cohen)

Today is Halloween, which for me means less than one month until my birthday! Yay! Oh wait — I mean, dressing up, eating candy, and looking like a tool. To celebrate the holiday right, we figured we’d do a Halloween-themed post.

I’ll be honest: when I heard Chris Gordon‘s demand to solicit Caps-themed jack-o-lanterns, I thought we’d get maybe four images and this post would be a total disaster. Three days and 50 emails later, holy lord did you guys come through in a BIG way. (I guess that’s why he contributes to the New York Times, and I don’t.)

We’ve got Caps logos, we’ve got Ovi heads, and we’ve got 10 million Weagle-carved pumpkins. Follow me past the jump to check out the gallery.

Oh yeah. Homeowners, please remember: the more Mr. Big bars you give out to the kids tonight, the more goals Ovechkin will score on Tuesday. So don’t be stingy. And kids, show no restraint in eating your candy when you get home. Sugar is good for you, no matter what your parents say. Eat it all in one night. Dive into those Kit-Kats and Milky Ways like Alex Ovechkin dives into the boards after scoaring. Type II diabetes be damned.

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HEY! We Want Your Caps-Themed Pumpkins!

It’s that time of year. Hockey is back in full-swing, the leaves are falling, and the Columbus Blue Jackets have been eliminated from playoff contention. (Only took nine games this time.)

With Halloween just a few days away, we have a challenge for you. After some nudging from our close friends (nudging, nagging, whatever), we’re asking you to send in photos of your Caps-themed (or just hockey-themed) jack-o-lanterns.

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