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I´m also Cånädiön
Rookie



Sweden
217 Posts

Posted - 06/04/2008 :  05:19:49  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
First time I read the Alex blog, and I must say I´m impressed . I think you mentioned somewhere that you are 13 years old (correct me if I´m wrong) which gives me the impression that you are very mature for your age.

However if you want some constructive criticism regarding your writing I have some thoughts. (I realise this isn´t a essay but a blog and something you do because you enjoy it.) A blog is supposed to be personal and express the authors opinions and thoughs, you do that in a great way.

But sometimes it feels like you´re directly typing down your thoughts as they come and go, back and forth without taking a quick brake to see what you have written so far. Thereby making it a bit difficult for a reader to "follow the red thread" at some times.

It depends a bit on your style of writing or what you feel comfortable with but some sort of outline before or after(just rearrange what you have written so it fit together/flows better) would make already great reading even better.

Keep up the good work, can´t wait for next one
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/04/2008 :  12:07:46  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
June 4th, 2008

Intro: It’s a little long, which I have been trying to shy away from, but the bulk of it is examples and me pointing out why superstitions are pointless, so you can skip the middle if you get the idea after the first couple of examples. Pick and chose what you want to read and reply in any case.

The Futility of Superstitions in Hockey


As the lovable Tevye put it in the 1964 hit Broadway musical ‘Fiddler on the Roof’: Tradition, tradition.

And while some NHL traditions have a special place in our hearts, others are overstaying their welcome. Exhibit A: The octopus at Joe Louis.

Nowadays in Pittsburgh you need I.D. to buy a gun, I.D. to buy some booze… and I.D. to buy a squid.

Renowned sports giant TSN went as far as to send a crew member ‘undercover’ to show viewers how hard it is to buy an octopus. The analyst and the vendor almost got into altercations after a heated argument. Some fan even bought two tickets in order to practice the age-old tradition in Steel Town. He got ejected from the game, but merely walked right back through the gate and sat in the next seat.

(To watch the clip: http://watch.tsn.ca/nhl/clip56747#clip56747)

Aren’t these childish shenanigans getting a wee bit out of hand?

The tradition (like most others in the NHL) is really baseless to begin with. Two eccentric Cusimano brothers decided to chuck an octopus onto the ice back in 1952. Why? Because octopi have eight legs, corresponding to the number of wins needed to be crowned league champ at the time. Why spiders would not suffice we shall never know…

Has it ever occurred to those old-timers adamant on keeping this practice alive that the quote on quote ‘good omen’ has worked its magic a mere 5 times in 56 seasons?

I’m no David Suzuki nor do I profess to be. I don’t give a hoot about animal rights and wildlife conservation agencies never get a cent out of me. The reason I’m sick and tired of this tradition is because it is bringing about more headaches than Stanley Cups. It is clearly unproven, and people like the double-ticket buyer in Pittsburgh are only looking for attention.

If you think about it, there are oodles of inane superstitions out there that don’t mean a thing. Take Patrick Roy for example, who would do anything to avoid skating across a blue line, to the point where he would flat out leap over them as opposed to making contact, even be it through a skate blade. Can you imagine if once in the span of his career he landed awkwardly and twisted his ankle? Can you imagine how dull his blades must have become from all those leaps and hops? Now I can’t take anything away from the guy because none of these hypothetical scenarios ever played out; instead, he went on to become one of if not the greatest goaltenders in the history of the league. But I’m sure we can all see how ridiculous these superstitions become.

Then we have the playoff beard and all adaptations thereof. Before you accuse me of owning stock in a line of barber shops, let me explain why I’m against this superstition. In the first place, countless teams have had players forsake the ritual and win cups – some of them with multiple such examples. In the second part, the cons simply outweigh the pros. Many may argue that a locker room full of grizzly 5 O’clock shadows at eight in the morning builds camaraderie – good and fine. But what about how irritating the facial hair can become? What about the constant itchiness? What about players like Mike Commodore, who went a step further by letting his red locks grow long. Can you imagine if that hair got in his eyes on a big play? Whew! I shudder at even thinking about how ticked off he would be.

Lately, players have come to take out their mouth guards as they get off the ice. As Pierre McGuirre comically pointed out in the first round series between the Capitals and Flyers, it is an unneeded distraction at best. One of the Philadelphia Flyers was head manned the puck as he was going to change. He had to receive it with one hand on the stick (the other was holding his recently spit-out mouth guard), and shoot with it in his hand! He scored, but wow. If that play were to happen again, nine times out of ten he wouldn’t even be able to cradle that pass.

Then we have those who make a big deal out of touching the Prince of Whales or Clarence S. Campbell trophies. This is ridiculous beyond words. True, there is no strong case for why one necessarily should touch the trophy. In our courts, the onus if on the plaintiff to bring forth evidence and I call Stephen Matteau of the ’94 Rangers to the witness stand. Let me fill you in on a little story (courtesy of Wikipedia)

‘In 1994, Stephane Matteau, then of the New York Rangers, admitted that he tapped the Wales Trophy with his stick's blade before the overtime period in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals.[7] Matteau subsequently scored the game-winning goal in double overtime against the New Jersey Devils, and the Rangers won the Stanley Cup.’

There are more such instances:

‘Scott Stevens hoisted the trophy as well in 2000, after the New Jersey Devils came back from a 3-1 series deficit to defeat the Philadelphia Flyers in seven games.’

Superstitions have become such a craze that entire internet domains are dedicated to them.

(Try http://www.mcq.org/societe/hockey/pages/aasuperstitions_4.html for a good light read.)

Many of these traditions are absurd – the only reason I can’t bash some of them as aggressively as I would like to is because the players who abided by them were legends. Guy Carbonneau used white tape on his stick blade, simply because he did not like black. Tell me what contrasts better, black on white or black on black? Black on white! Any goaltender shifting his beady eyes in search of the puck can easily scan it on the stick when the tape is white – which just makes his job easier!

Many play with t-shirts that go unwashed for several months. I don’t know about you but if my yearly income was in 7 figures, I would wear a new t-shirt for every period! Can you imagine how disgusting that is? How uncomfortable! Ew.

This year the Montreal Canadiens checked into a hotel outside the districts of the highly populated area, and stayed locked up within its confines until their run was over. Now if you were a player, would you not rather have a break at home with the kids and wife every so often? I’m sure Carey Price would have loved to gone home to unwind as opposed to being surrounded by team-mates for a whole month. He said it himself, he wanted nothing more than a break.

There are yet others who don’t tie skates until minutes before taking to the ice. Logistically, that means that they are in full equipment before lacing ‘em up. Anyone who has tied skates with upper body equipment knows what a strain it is. I have done it before and felt tired after the fact. Is this superstition worth maintaining at the risk of losing the physical edge on your opponent?

Do we realize how illogical and backwards these superstitions are? Before a game, I play a video game, or watch T.V. or whatever else I feel like doing - not what some irrational doctrine of futility demands upon me. I don’t follow some unjustified foolishness, and that gives me more of a mental edge than a field full of four leaf clovers.

I’d love to continue, as I could probably pen pages and pages of this before hitting writer’s block, but there is this little superstition I have about studying before exams. I think we can all agree that it is one of the more sensible ones out there…

-Alex

Edited by - Alex on 06/05/2008 09:12:32
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  10:10:13  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
June 5th, 2008

It borders on unlawful for me to start off my blog today without giving credit where credit is due. That being the case, I will formally congratulate the 2008 Detroit Red Wings players, coaching staff, administration and owners on winning the Stanley Cup – although I called this series over before it started. To be honest, I’m not really fazed by the news. They won the cup… ho-hum. I guess I can’t get excited when the players themselves looked like a night at Casino Rama would have been more exciting than winning the cup.

That was probably the lamest celebration I have ever seen. Call me whatever you may come up with, but it has a lot to do with nationality. To the Swedes, playing good hockey is a science or an art – not a passion. They won the cup and that was that, on to new things. Sure, had they won on home turf it may have been slightly different, but I don’t think that home ice was what made the party dull. I think that the Red Wings knew they had won the minute they went up 3 games to 1, and it was just a matter of time. I don’t buy into what they say to the media for one second; they knew they won the cup before they actually did. It’s too bad they were so nonchalant about it, because that hurts like hell in the hearts of the Pens who truly would have appreciated it much more, at least IMO.

While on the topic, let me say this here and now: the Pittsburgh Penguins will not win the Stanley Cup next year, they will not cruise to the Conference Final, they will not be as good as they were this year.

40.62 percent of respondents to NHL.com’s feature poll predict the Penguins will at least make it back to the final – more than half of those say they will win it all. If the Senators, Oilers, or Flames are any indication, Pittsburgh is in for a tough trek next season.

I’m also going to go on record and say that Detroit will not suffer a six or seven month hangover much like the Ducks, Hurricanes and Lightning. And while expect that they will come through with a repeat performance, I would pick them to beat most any team they faced this year, including and especially the Penguins.

So let’s focus on the Pens. I think Ray Shero’s team will mirror Brian Murray’s in that they came up short when it was their year to win. At deadline day, Shero took a gamble by trading the future for the now. Had he came through he would have looked like a genius, but it was not to be.

Roberts, Malone, Hossa, Laraque, Ruutu, Hall, Dupuis, and Orpik are all UFAs next season. Malkin, Sykora, Staal, Scuderi, and Gill are all on deck for next year’s FA pool.

Shero will have to whip out a brilliant, albeit desperate plan of action for the off-season because otherwise the great system he set in place through the draft will crumble at his feet. While I hate to be the prophet of impending doom, it isn’t knew knowledge that you can’t have your cake and eat it too.

The big key to success will be uniting Crosby and Malkin – which doesn’t mean necessarily playing them together. In 2007, they complimented each other and played terrific, each fueled by the other’s accomplishments. This year, it was a big battle. Everyone is saying ‘Crosby or Malkin, Crosby or Malkin.’ It can’t be that way if you want to win. Crosby and Malkin can’t be such distinct entities that they forget they are working together, and I think that happened just a little. Crosby and Malkin need to sit down, chill out, and get on the same page. They need to be best buds if the Penguins want success. Philadelphia did a very smart thing by saying point blank that they were not worried about Crosby but rather Malkin – they rekindled the battle between the two and took away their focus. To win, it needs to be Crosby and Malkin, not Crosby vs. Malkin.

It can be done, but it won’t. The group in Steel Town could win together, but they won’t. Long term, Crosby will stay in Pittsburgh and Malkin won’t. And I think that Malkin won’t win a cup with the Penguins. Meanwhile I expect Detroit to win again some time in the next ten years.

Last Word: Watching Crosby during the Star Spangled Banner last night, I realized something: most Canadian players have to live with motivating themselves through an anthem not their own. Seeing as most players in the NHL are Canadian (I don’t have exact numbers to back that up. If they don’t constitute at least 50 percent of the league, they are definitely the majority of the minorities) it would make sense to me to play Oh Canada at every game, no matter the venue. Thoughts?

-Alex

Edited by - Alex on 06/05/2008 16:03:39
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fat_elvis_rocked
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
899 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  10:21:50  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Once again great job Alex!

I'll go out on a limb here and query the crew on something.

Why do they bother with the national anthems prior to the games? Still necessary? I think the intent at one time was to pay homage to country and tweak that little niggle of patriotism and fire up the fans and players for the upcoming contest, but like Alex pointed out, not very many of the players on the teams, are native to the country they play in, Canadians in US teams, Europeans in Canadian teams etc.

In most of the northern US venues, there are hordes of Canadian fans in the crowd, again, necessary to stand through an anthem?

Has this become a redundant tradition, and would it not be correct to play anthems from all the countries providing players to the teams?

I understand it in international competitions, but in the NHL?

What do you think?
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8190 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  11:13:53  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Be at Rexall Place during a playoff game and here the Oiler fans rockin out O Canada and then tell me that the National Anthems are no longer needed.
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fat_elvis_rocked
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
899 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  11:18:40  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have and I hear you..

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BradTheBadDad
Top Prospect



73 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  12:30:10  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Good job kid you make some good points and have a lot of good insight. I enjoy reading this, even though I don't read it all.

I do disagree though on the notion that the Penguins won't be as good next year -- think again! These guys are the real deal and as long as Malkin, Crosby Gonchar and Fleury are there, they have what it takes.

You'll see!

''Eat. Sleep. Hockey''
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I´m also Cånädiön
Rookie



Sweden
217 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  14:22:32  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Just finished reading your two latest posts alex. I can agree that some of the traditions and superstitions in hockey is a bit weird. However when a sick person can get much better by just eating a sugar pill(placebo) while thinking its a miracle drug you just can´t count out the power of belief. If a player truly believe he will play better by doing something before games i think he can increase his potential with a couple of percent at least.

I´m not sure what the second post was about really so I´m just gonna comment some random things:

Without generalizing to much you can say that swedes are pretty low-key on most things, it´s a bit of a national character. It could seem like hockey is seen as an science but then again 99% or so of strategy and tactics in modern hockey are of european origin.

You said that you expect The Wings to win some time in the next ten years, no offence but looking at their record the last ten years that´s hardly a very bold guess. Given one more year the Wings will just get better like a fine wine maturing by age. I think that they take next years cup to.

I´m not really for nor against national anthems before games, it just doesn´t exist in sweden. We don´t have the same flagwaving mentality younger or south-european nations(France,Italy) do. Honestly I think It´s a bit sad that the only time it´s PK to be proud of your country is during sports in internatinal competition. I envy Canada in that way.






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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/06/2008 :  13:57:39  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
2008-09 Predictions


June 6, 2008

Hey in da hizhay, your king is in the house! Figured I’d bask in my glory until one of my many predictions from way out in left field goes sour.

I’m going to take the liberty to make a few bets on what happens next season. Guess it goes against the whole ‘quit while you’re ahead’ theory, but then again neither does Hillary Clinton.

Evgeni Malkin won’t touch the numbers he set this year; meanwhile Crosby will regain his form from his triple whammy (Hart, Pearson, MVP) year. Alex Ovechkin will be just as good without netting 65. We could conservatively shave 5-10 goals from that plateau. Phaneuf will have to wait one more year before finally coming into his own. Lidstrom will still be the top dog on the block, at least for one more season. Roberto Luongo won’t be a Vezina finalist yet again, not while he’s backing up the pylons in front of him. Cam Ward will be stellar.

The Montreal Canadiens won’t come near first in the east, not led by an old Russian has-been. The emotional drain will take its toll on Price and he won’t be able to maintain the energy level through the long haul. Halak will see a lot of ice time. The Senators will flop yet again but Emery will resurface as their starter as long as they sit tight and don’t pull the trigger on his trade. Either way, Gerber won’t be their knight in shining armour, not now, not ever. They won’t win together during the tenures of the CASH line.

The Leafs won’t even get a ticket to the post-season. They most likely will shoot themselves in the foot again this year. The Buffalo Sabres will enjoy a good campaign but won’t get it done unless they can buy themselves a captain and a Brian Campbell - IMO an insurmountable task.

Barring a mathematical miracle, the Penguins won’t be able to put as great a product on the ice in September considering all the pending FAs in the next couple of years. The Avalanche will crash and burn; the Vancouver Canucks will tear apart at the seams and realize they need to rebuild. One of the central division teams apart from Detroit will be able to make some noise this year, much like the Caps of 2008. The Oil will sneak into the playoffs but not much further. The Anaheim Ducks won’t be able to salvage their roster which is burdened by the new CBA. Even Brian Burke won’t be able to pull it off, and this team won’t be in the top four in the West. The Capitals will be the new Penguins if they manage to keep their team together (which includes the 39 year old Sergei Federov!)

Mike Ribeiro’s production will grind to a screeching halt. Danny Heatley will skyrocket. Jonathan Toews will explode overnight, but won’t necessarily have the numbers to back him up (much like Nash in Columbus.) Olaf Kolzig will be incredible on his new team if he has the assurance of being number one. Vincent Lecavlier will be the best player in the NHL. He will mentor Steven Stamkos a la Crosby / Malkin - but St. Louis won’t become an outcast in that trio. The Lightning are a streaky team, and with a good goalie I believe they can win a Stanley Cup this year.

Jaromir Jagr won’t retire from hockey altogether, but will likely play outside North American shores. Barnaby Joe won’t retire either. Peter Forsberg will call it quits, something he should have done about three years ago. Niedermayer will stick around. Sundin won’t move anywhere, but tell me something I don't know.

Sean Avery won’t find nearly as much attention this year. Elisha Cuthbert will break up with Dion. The referees will take more heat than usual, but the ‘insurance line’ or video review for goaltending still won’t be introduced to the league. At least one team will directly end their season on a puck fired over the glass (be it in the playoffs or in the few games leading up to it). Almost all rivalries will die down. The NHL will be desperate for good storylines.

Going out on a limb: It’s not inconceivable to believe that with one or two good moves, two SouthEast rivals could claim top honours this year: the Capitals and Lightning. Even throwing the ‘Canes into that mix is not a push. (Hear that? That’s the sound of jaws dropping!) In the West, Detroit is the only cup-worthy team right now but that can change over the summer. If the Flames don’t act like turkeys and make a couple of key moves, I can see them as a solid sleeper pick. They are good enough.

If you want my opinion on anything else, post it and I’ll throw out an educated (or more likely completely made up) guess. Oh, and I’m going to get this one out here and now. Bash my predictions if you will. Let’s see you predict 12/15 playoff series right, and then we’ll talk

-Da King

Edited by - Alex on 06/06/2008 14:06:49
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BradTheBadDad
Top Prospect



73 Posts

Posted - 06/06/2008 :  14:24:43  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
A great read as usual! I think you really know you're hockey. I'd like to point some things out though.

Calgary is definitely a good team and if they made a good trade this year than you are right they could have been contenders. In theory they should be great next year. They have more money thrown at their D than most other teams. Thing is, and I'm sure you missed this: they have a crazy amount of unrestricted free agents! No way they'll be able to recover!

I'd suggest logging on to this site and taking a look:
http://www.nhlnumbers.com/overview.php?team=WAS

Carolina and Tampa are also pretty tied up financially. Of the teams you mentioned, only Washington and Detroit make sense to me. They're definitely both risky picks though not completely off the wall, and you will look like a genius if either of them come close!

Later.

''Eat. Sleep. Hockey''
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8190 Posts

Posted - 06/07/2008 :  08:52:45  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have to question the prediction of the Oilers just making the playoffs but not much more.I know I am the OIler fan, but I am hearing rumors of Kevin Lowe working on a 3 or 4 players for one trade on or around the draft. The name being bounced around the most is Olli Jokinen, but depending on who Lowe is willing to put up, it could be others as well.

You also have to remember that the Oilers went 18-11-1 in the last 30 games of the season (00.600) win percentage without Horcoff, Souray, Torres, as well as Hemsky and Pitkanen missing games through that period too. The Oilers lost 340 man games to injury which is the 5th most in the league.

A healthy Oiler team, with one more key piece to the puzzle get right back into the mix. Especially with Vancouver look to be on the down swing and many questions to Colorado. If they are healthy and play like they did at the end of last year, they can reasonably challenge for the North West Title, at least a 3rd seed in the West, and potentially deep into the playoffs.

Not saying it will happen, but I think that is more likely than they sh*tting the bed.
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/08/2008 :  06:02:44  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
June 7, 2008

CBC, Have You No Shame?


Ladies and germs, I give you Barack Obama. The man who no one really likes, no one really wants, but for some strange reason, everyone keeps coming back to. Sounds a hell of a lot like the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation eh?

Both managed to make headlines this week, but as we are on a hockey site I’ll focus my efforts on the latter.

The CBC and Hockey Night in Canada is a slap in the face to anything Canadian. They say they represent the masses, when in fact they cater to a select few. They don’t really give thought to what the public has to say, because they have the monopoly on the entire industry. And thus, the Rich Uncle Pennybags of the hockey world can go around gallivanting as it pleases, experimenting to its heart’s content while Canadian heritage lies in the balance.

Call it melodramatic if you will, but when it’s all said and done hockey is one of the few things so etched into our national psyche that it really separates us from our Yankee neighbours to the south. In the interest of making a quick buck, they undermine what HNIC should be all about.

First of all, where the hell was Don ‘AWOL’ Cherry in the opening rounds of the playoffs? I’d put money on Hooters – or whatever the Canadian equivalent may be. Canada had to sit through Ron MacLean and some young punk named Elliote Friedman pulling Pierre McGuires out of his ass during second intermissions. Nothing against neither Friedman nor McGuire, who I will staunchly defend time and again, but they just don’t measure up. Don Cherry has a duty to the Canadian people to show up for every single minute of playoff hockey, and then some.

That’s not even the worst of it. Let’s talk about the garbage they force feed us when they finally do grace us with their presence.

The Globe ran an article in Friday’s paper heavily criticizing HNIC – and they had the numbers to back them up (number of viewers is down significantly). You’d think that with Canada’s darling in the playoffs, we’d hear all about him, right? Wrong – sorta.

On the June 4th edition of Coach’s Corner (the last one aired this season) Don Cherry first talks about Holmstrom the warrior as if he was Captain Canada himself. Then he praises the Detroit Red Wings for their tricky plays at the blue-line. (The very same man heavily criticized the Finns following their loss at the hands of the Canadians for running the very same tactic, going almost as far as calling them chicken.) In the middle of the skit we do finally hear about Crosby, but not how he’s leading his team, not how he is showing heart and determination, not how he refuses to quit. We hear Don Cherry feed his ego by saying that the Kid should have listened to him and is paying the price for diving early in his career. Old man Cherry even manages to bring up Mario’s name while he’s at it. We hear how Don Cherry is smarter than the best player in the game, his parents and his agent. This is what they air on national television in the last game of the season with the Stanley Cup on the line – material that slights the image of the hero idolized from sea to sea! HNIC is going to the dogs, and they’re throwing Coach’s Corner right under the bus with them.

To their credit, they have been great in the past. In 2004, Don Cherry was sensational. He covered Canadians and only Canadians. He talked about Lecavalier and Iginla till he went blue in the face. He coined St. Louis ‘the man with the heart of a lion.’ During the Edmonton run of ’06, Cherry could have converted a Quebec Separatist into a proud Canadian. It was heart warming to watch highlights of Smith, Horcoff, Pisani and the rest cast everything including personal health aside to play for the dream of a lifetime. He showed us plays of Canadians diving to block shots, racing to win puck battles, hustling back to help out their goalie… exactly what we have come to expect from the man who bleeds red and white.

There are bigger issues though and I won’t dwell on the Cherry segment for too long, because at the end of the day I love the guy. Let’s talk about the infamous theme song on the lips of thirty million people this week.

I think it’s a real shame the way CBC let’s Canadian staples fall by the wayside. True Dolores Claman might be a cold hard bitch for taking the stand she is, but legally she has the rights. You want to tell me CBC can’t pay an extra 500 per game to win the rights to a song? Stare me in the face Mr. Lacroix and tell me that as president of a government run program you can’t squeeze an extra 500 dollars from the government who seems so adept at squandering tax payers’ money on countless other trivial pursuits. Damn you all!

Believe you me, we could be here for days muttering our contempt at the station meant to hold Canada’s interests as its top priority. We could complain that the Maple Leafs get way too much air time. We could complain that the fans out West have to sit through the closing minutes of the Eastern games before watching real hockey – and then don’t even merit the luxury of watching it in HD. We could rant and rave, cuss and what not about how CBC chose to air a Leafs game over the ceremony in which Boom-Boom Goeffrion’s number was retired. We could whine and bicker about CBC almost letting Ron MacLean walk out on them over a few measly dollars. We could.

Or we could take a stand. We could write letters. We could organize boycotts. We could ensure that our voices be heard! At the very least, get your opinions out there on the World Wide Web. Those who stand for nothing fall for everything!

-Da King

Edited by - Alex on 06/08/2008 09:22:01
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BradTheBadDad
Top Prospect



73 Posts

Posted - 06/08/2008 :  07:27:40  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:

I think it’s a real shame the way CBC let’s Canadian staples fall by the wayside. True Dolores Claman might be a cold hard bitch for taking the stand she is, but legally she has the rights. You want to tell me CBC can’t pay an extra 500 per game to win the rights to a song? Stare me in the face Mr. Lacroix and tell me that as president of a government run program you can’t squeeze an extra 500 dollars from the government who seems so adept at squandering tax payers’ money on countless other trivial pursuits. Damn you all!



Exactly! Alex, you hit this one dead on! All in all I think your piece outdid yourself this time bud!

You did exaggerate a little (ex. Cherry talked about Malone and Roberts all playoffs, I guess that one slipped under the radar) but the rest was great. CBC airs what they want, does what they want, talks about what they want, features who they want and decides what Canadian heritage becomes without consulting the people.

It's time we do something! Realistically I don't think we have any power, but I loved this essay. You should send it in as an editorial, but would need to cut out some parts to shorten it a little...

Check this out I think you guys would like it:
http://youtube.com/watch?v=Tj7Auk1zN3A



''Eat. Sleep. Hockey''

Edited by - BradTheBadDad on 06/08/2008 10:25:59
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PainTrain
PickupHockey Veteran



Canada
1393 Posts

Posted - 06/08/2008 :  10:49:14  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Alex, what's your opinion on Tiger Woods saying that nobody watches hockey?

When the going gets tough....the tough get going!
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/11/2008 :  10:41:21  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by PainTrain

Alex, what's your opinion on Tiger Woods saying that nobody watches hockey?

When the going gets tough....the tough get going!



June 11, 2008

If you ask me, the whole Tiger Woods faux pas is being blown way out of proportion. Pressing for an apology was about as far as this should have gone, and that’s talking liberally.


Many a bigot have gone as far as calling on the hockey community to boycott Tiger’s sponsors, saying that his ‘outlandish’ statement was a calculated move by Nike to steal some of Reebok’s thunder. As if there aren’t enough stupid storylines circulating around nowadays, now we take it upon ourselves to dream up new ones.

Let’s talk about this in context. Tiger probably has a million things he worries about before hockey, as do most Americans. What he said, while it was politically incorrect, probably represents the opinions of the vast majority of Americans. Apathy towards hockey is not a crime. Be it for better or worse, Tiger went public and spoke his mind.

In all fairness, he did have an air of humour about him when the comments were made, and obviously wasn’t looking to spark any major controversy. The fact remains, he was there to talk about his injury, not hockey. Eight days later he told reporters he had been joking, but stood by his original remarks. Come of it what may, I am going to commend Woods on not pulling an Obama when we were all expecting him to. He isn’t going to put on a show and pretend to like hockey when he doesn’t, and if we as hockey fans can’t handle it well then that’s our hard luck.

I do think though that it is a little classless on Tiger’s part, just because Gretzky defended golf when asked about it and Tiger dissed hockey when it was his turn. But it doesn’t warrant the type of outcry it has received. I will take this opportunity to bash golf once and for all, and then I’m closing the books on this because it is really quite ridiculous.

1) In the first part, golf is a game, not a sport, played by real athletes in the off-season.

2) In the second part, if Tiger thinks watching hockey on T.V. is boring, I’m itching to learn what his attitude is towards televised golf. How’s about they introduce a glowing golf ball, now there’s a worthy idea! Watching the PGA tour is like watching three hours of clouds and sky and the occasional tree thrown in for good measure.

3) Thirdly, John Daley is not an athlete, along with 90 percent of golfers. There’s a reason golf is primarily played by old farts in Florida. I’d like to see any of these clowns lace ‘em up and take to the ice against one of our boys.

4) And finally, golf players are the only ones who find it a challenge to get their balls in the hole.

In closing, let me say this about the whole headache: ‘I don’t really care. No one watches Tiger Woods anymore.’

-The New Kid on the Block
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8190 Posts

Posted - 06/11/2008 :  11:08:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I think the whole Hockey Night In Canada theme song has been blown well out of proportion. Couple of things to note on this from what I have read.

1) It's not $500 a game, it $500 every time the song is played. I have never counted but I would say that song is played around 10 times every Saturday night. It's not $500 a game, it's more like $5,000 a game. And that was the old deal. What was the composer asking for in the new deal??? CBC claims they offered $1 million for the rights while the composer was looking for $2.5 million to $3 million

2) There is also a little something of a $2.5 million+ law suit to the composer stating that HNIC and Molstar Sports over used the song without paying for it.


All that considered, is that song with $5 million for a publicly funded organization?? How many other things can be done at the CBC with $5 million for a simple song??


And ultimately, in my humble opinion, traditions become further solidified when the come to an end. How many years did Mr. Hewitt call the HNIC games?? That is a tradition that is solidified after he departed. Same will go with Coaches Corner with Don Cherry and Ron MacLean.


The beast we call HNIC is far more than just a jingle. It is to me anyway.
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MardiGras
Top Prospect



20 Posts

Posted - 06/11/2008 :  11:32:06  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Stupid Tiger Woods thinks he's all that. You're letting him off way too easy guys, that's slander against the best sport in the world! And we sit by and say that we don't care. Wow.
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BradTheBadDad
Top Prospect



73 Posts

Posted - 06/11/2008 :  11:56:11  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Alex

4) And finally, golf players are the only ones who find it a challenge to get their balls in the hole.

In closing, let me say this about the whole headache: ‘I don’t really care. No one watches Tiger Woods anymore.’

-The New Kid on the Block



Haha! For someone who thought this was ridiculous you come on pretty strong I agree though, it's not a big deal what Tiger Woods thinks. People are looking for a story and came across this bit of news. If I'm not mistaken some reporter was trying to make small talk before the interview had even officially started and wound up opening the can of worms of the week.

Cry about it Mr. Bettman, Tiger Woods doesn't like your attempt at golf on ice.

''Eat. Sleep. Hockey''
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/12/2008 :  04:29:35  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
June 12, 2008

The firing of Paul Maurice was a cop-out by MLSE, and the hiring of Ron Wilson is a feeble attempt to put the city under the illusion that they actually have a plan.

Answer this question truthfully: what does Wilson bring to the table that Maurice does not? A longer tenure as bench boss around the league, and that’s about it. All his accolades look mighty dandy in his resume (I’ll admit, he is a great coach), but if he couldn’t get it done in San Jose do we really expect him to infuse passion in the likes of Nikolai Antropov, Alexander Steen, Matt Stajan or Tomas Kaberle? Puh-lease.

The best coach in the world could come in to T.O. and still wouldn’t get it done this season or the next or probably even the next, so I hope Cliff Fletcher gives Wilson the patience he deserves. Thus far, Fletcher comes off as a jitterbug GM, anxious to make headlines everyday.

When it comes down to it, firing Patt Quinn was the biggest coaching mistake they have made since their downward spiral from Conference Finalists to early golfers. I’m not going to ramble on about Wilson, but rather give way to time to do the talking.

Just a couple of quick points on the Leafs while they’re on my mind:

1) Get rid of Blake, Tucker, Kubina, Toskala and McCabe. Don’t abandon Raycroft, he is a good goalie on a bad team and needs a bit of time.

2) NO BIG NAME SIGNINGS FOR PETE’S SAKE! The answer to your problems will come with years of patience, not signing away Tennenbaum’s money to any idiot off the street. Cliff Fletcher has a bad case of ants in the pants.

3) Draft the best players out there, not the best players that suit your needs. Toronto needs an entire facelift. If in the long run you realize you don’t need three goalies for example, the time to go for broke is when you actually have a team you can win with.

4) Don’t expect the rookies to go right out of training camp and into a first-line position. Remember Doug Wickenheiser? His career was ruined because he wasn’t introduced to the league properly. Rookies rise through the ranks by first playing smaller roles. Do not wreck the young talent by doing to them what you did to Drew. All those who insist that starting a roster exclusively comprised of rookies is the way to go have my permission to get their head examined by the finest shrink in the country.

To the fans, take this sound advice: move to Montreal. They’re overdue for a cup any time soon.

-The New Kid on the Block

Edited by - Alex on 06/15/2008 11:44:19
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8190 Posts

Posted - 06/12/2008 :  09:36:06  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I just can't seem to understand the logic in people's thought process regarding the goaltending situation in T.O. Raycroft?? Seriously, the guy had one season of value in this entire career. Look at his non NHL stats and he was an average goalie!

Toskala has be steady though this career (to this point) and has produced better numbers than goalies on teams the same calibre of Toronto.

Starting goalie is about the only thing I wouldn't change about the Leafs and I don't think there is a GM in the NHL right now that would take Raycroft over Toskala.
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BradTheBadDad
Top Prospect



73 Posts

Posted - 06/12/2008 :  12:48:35  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Beans15

I just can't seem to understand the logic in people's thought process regarding the goaltending situation in T.O. Raycroft?? Seriously, the guy had one season of value in this entire career. Look at his non NHL stats and he was an average goalie!

Toskala has be steady though this career (to this point) and has produced better numbers than goalies on teams the same calibre of Toronto.

Starting goalie is about the only thing I wouldn't change about the Leafs and I don't think there is a GM in the NHL right now that would take Raycroft over Toskala.



I think many of us are falling prey to the illusion that Andrew Raycroft is either an incredible goalie or a has been, both of which are a far cry from the truth of the matter, namely, he needs to seriously work on his game to regain form. He will never have the magic of 04 back though.

If he was drafted first or even anywhere in the first round, we could say he actually does have a lot of skill and the one season wasn't a fluke. However, let's be serious: 135th! That means that each team passed on him an average of 4 and a half times before Boston finally picked him.

This guy was a one hit wonder. You missed on this call, Alex.

Oh and by the way, with hockey awards, buyout period in the NHL, players retiring, coach signings, goalie pad adjustments looming and all that stuff you sure have your hands full in the next couple of days! And you thought this was a dry season...!

''Eat. Sleep. Hockey''
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/12/2008 :  19:13:02  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Note: As I will be preoccupied with many end-of-year formalities in the weeks to come, many editions of the Alex Blog will be posted slightly in advance.

June 13, 2008

Add Kyle Welwood to the long list of NHL players who find a way to get injured in a setting having little or nothing to do with hockey. They say he broke his foot during a conditioning session by playing indoor soccer, but that’s what they want you to believe. MLSE has a knack for craftily weaving tales and thus I’d look at this cover-up story with a grain of salt.

This sparks a controversial debate: should players be restricted in the off-season? Damn straight they should be. We throw millions at them too break a bone or pull a muscle in a totally unrelated activity? Call it cruel, call it manipulative, call it malicious, call it paranoid. In the corporate world we have another name for it: smart.

Doctors get paid but a small fraction of what NHLers do. Many of them have social lives and holiday times governed by when and when not they are expected to be on call to save a life, a much more worthy enterprise than putting a puck in a net. Ditto that for firefighters, who hardly make more than your average McDonald’s worker. Why should we afford NHL players any more luxuries than they deserve?

As fans, we ought to have commitment from our players. The organization, the league the teammates and most importantly the owners deserve the peace of mind that comes with knowing that players aren’t taking unnecessary risks.

How exactly we go about it I couldn’t tell you. Although I’m sure a contract of some sort could be drawn up by a lawyer. Certain areas in general, such as bars and places where fights are known to pop up should be entirely off-limits. One thing I’ll guarantee, nothing will work if its not put in writing.

All this of course should be carried out within reason. Telling your star forward he won’t be allowed to go swimming at his kids’ birthday party is a little over the top. However, playing touch football at a College reunion or motor biking on the Autobahn for example deserves some thought. NHL players who suddenly find their calling in Kung Fu Fighting or gymnastics should postpone their mid-life crisis until after their hockey careers. Listen, if it was your hard earned cash invested in these guys wouldn’t you want to squeeze every possible game out of them? Hockey players do their fair share of horsing around, rough necking and the like, and efforts should be made to regulate such occurrences.

Scoff, scorn and jest. Next time your team captains gets injured in a bungee jumping accident or gets in the middle of paintball gone wrong don’t say I didn’t warn you.

-The New Kid on the Block
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MardiGras
Top Prospect



20 Posts

Posted - 06/12/2008 :  19:25:46  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Alex

They say he broke his foot during a conditioning session by playing indoor soccer, but that’s what they want you to believe. MLSE has a knack for craftily weaving tales and thus I’d look at this cover-up story with a grain of salt.



I actually agree with your main argument, problem was you ruined it by saying that quote above. What were you thinking? MLSE would have reason to lie about this maybe, but seriously: if they were to lie, you think they'd come up with this? You obviously can't detect a lie when you see one.

The sad thing is, this story about the soccer is the truth not the lie. THAT'S the irony of it all.
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FranzenFanatic
Top Prospect



23 Posts

Posted - 06/12/2008 :  19:34:46  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I usually think what people say on this site is a bunch of crap, and I would have said that to you Alex if my favourite player wasn't Franzen. You're lucky.

Since Franzen has concussions and we know that this type of injury can haunt you forever, he should follow your rules. Anything can trigger another concussion. The Red Wings would be smart to read this.

So even though this rule sucks, I'll buy it.
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2008 :  04:51:45  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Again, I'm posting this early because next time I'm around these parts is Sunday. Feel free to comment on either this entry or the last one (or any for that matter)

June 14, 2008

It’s summer time and the living is easy. In the absence of the NHL, I’ve been keeping busy following the latest chapter in the legendary Lakers / Celtics rivalry unfold (sue me.) There is one thing that stands out to me that sets the NBA on a pedestal over other sports: brotherhood, and it’s a wonderful thing what they have going on.

Allow me to illustrate. Pivotal game three, a four point game with a minute and change on the clock. Kobe Bryant relieves the tension by walking over to Pierce, giving him a nice little slap in the ass, then embracing Garnett and mouthing to him what seems to this amateur lip-reader as ‘relax brother.’ The two share a laugh before getting back to business. Where would you see that in hockey? It’s the exact opposite.

In Peewee, I transferred select teams (the difference geographically was all of two blocks, but the schedule was more practical.) When we played my old team, one of the kids who had not been there during my time on the team belted me and sent me flying. The team captain, an old buddy of mine, offered me a hand. We joked around, and he tapped me on the helmet as if to say ‘Atta boy, Alex.’ Next thing you know the ref comes in to ‘break us up’ and warn us not to ‘dish out any more cheap shots’. Our coaches witness the play and exchange pleasantries with each other that almost lead to one of them getting ejected from the game. Doesn’t it speak oodles for where our game has gone when a play that in the NBA is a show of true sportsmanship immediately sends up a red flag for a ref in amateur hockey?

Anyone who brings up the argument that hockey is too physical to allow such camaraderie has never watched a real game of basketball. Without being an expert I can say confidently that most b-ball plays end in a foul of the loosest sense. When six guys topping 6 foot are all jumping to one hoop at the same time, contact is inevitable. Scratches, hands in the face (literally) and the likes are a result of most every play. You try falling twelve feet onto hardwood and shaking it off like nothing happened.

I’ve said it once and I’ve said it twice and I’ll say it as many times as it takes: it’s about time the league got a little more heimish.

…excuse the German.


-The New Kid on the Block
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8190 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2008 :  09:45:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Restricting an athlete in the offseason could be the dumbest thing I have ever heard. I can understand that these people can and should be restricted from doing things that are extremely dangerous (skydiving, drag racing, etc). It is the same thing that companies who have travel rules to where certain people can not travel together in case something happens.

However, we are talking about an athlete who gets paid to play a sport being told not to play a sport?? That is what they are trained to do!! A hockey player's body is an instrument to facilitate an action. That body is tuned to perform under stress. Playing soccer, basketball, jogging, etc is what that body is designed for. Athletics.

I would strongly suggest that an athlete has a far higher likelihood of getting hit by a car on the way to the soccer field than to get injured playing soccer. Should we tell pro athletes that they can't drive now???


That is just complete stupid in my opinion.
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Pasty7
PickupHockey Veteran



Canada
2283 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2008 :  12:13:11  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
its funny how you leave things out that don't support your ideals and rants,, for example yeah cherry talked about malone and roberts all playoffs he also raved on how good Jordan Staal as and that Marc Andre Fleury showed the greatness of Roy, he even suggested staal should win the conn smyth should the pens take home the cup,,,, and why wouldn;t he say he was right about sid,, he was!!! and he barely mentioned mario all he said was mario did the same thing,, what the hell are you talking about cherry has a duty to Canada to be there then bitch about his comments,, wow there is so much i'd like to say about this incredibly bias and unfounded post!!! why wouldn;t he talk about te beautiful play of the red wings,,, they were playing amazing they domiated te entire series!! i know i;m going back a couple posts but thats because i cant be botherd to read the most recent ones this one a cbc was so dry pointless and any real point you made you forced by leaving out the balenceing information,,, opinions are one thing but propaganda is another

Pasty
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I´m also Cånädiön
Rookie



Sweden
217 Posts

Posted - 06/14/2008 :  02:11:04  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I enjoy reading your posts Alex, find them to be more interesting than some enumeration of statistics found elsewhere.

Realise that you have to take differant approaches to get the debate going. But sometimes you wonder, in an earlier post you wanted the league to police it self and know you like it to be more heimish. The two doesn´t exactly go hand in hand, or do they?

I can agree to that other team-sports can be just as violent as hockey (with the exeption of fighting). For example if you are watching a Football (Soccer not the game who should be named something more logical like Handcylinder or something) game and they zoom in on a glide-tackling you can see how the recipients leg flex and look almost like a banana. Almost any other athlete would have ended up with a broken leg in the same situation. So violence exists in many sports but it´s not as intentional as in for instance hockey or boxing.

Violence in hockey are more intentional at times and it just escalates in some games. Could that be the differance?

Edit: The first sentence could be misunderstood. It doesn´t contain any negative at all against The Guest guru, by found elsewhere i mean on other sites.

Edited by - I´m also Cånädiön on 06/14/2008 10:05:33
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Pasty7
PickupHockey Veteran



Canada
2283 Posts

Posted - 06/14/2008 :  07:26:19  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Beans15

Restricting an athlete in the offseason could be the dumbest thing I have ever heard. I can understand that these people can and should be restricted from doing things that are extremely dangerous (skydiving, drag racing, etc). It is the same thing that companies who have travel rules to where certain people can not travel together in case something happens.

However, we are talking about an athlete who gets paid to play a sport being told not to play a sport?? That is what they are trained to do!! A hockey player's body is an instrument to facilitate an action. That body is tuned to perform under stress. Playing soccer, basketball, jogging, etc is what that body is designed for. Athletics.

I would strongly suggest that an athlete has a far higher likelihood of getting hit by a car on the way to the soccer field than to get injured playing soccer. Should we tell pro athletes that they can't drive now???


That is just complete stupid in my opinion.



i'm playing baseball against gui latendress this summer.... i wonder if hes as bad at baseball as he is at hockey!!

Pasty
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BradTheBadDad
Top Prospect



73 Posts

Posted - 06/15/2008 :  05:54:18  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Pasty7

its funny how you leave things out that don't support your ideals and rants,, for example yeah cherry talked about malone and roberts all playoffs he also raved on how good Jordan Staal as and that Marc Andre Fleury showed the greatness of Roy, he even suggested staal should win the conn smyth should the pens take home the cup,,,,




I think you read it wrong, Pasty. Alex likes Cherry, but he was pointing out a controversial statement(s) of his which many of us were a little ticked off about, myself included.

I do agree that Cherry is losing his touch. That being said, Canadians don't care, and that's what Alex was trying to point out. We want Cherry even if we don't always agree with what he said, that was the point and it was valid.

Alex as an aside, you might want to be a little careful. I'm guessing the reason you wrote the CBC post was mostly because of the news around the Theme Song. While the rest of your opinions did make sense, they just took attention away from the main idea. You did the same thing in the Crosby-Ovechkin debate if my memory serves me right. Stick to the point and you'll be fine, which is what you're doing lately.

''Eat. Sleep. Hockey''
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/15/2008 :  06:13:21  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
June 15, 2008

Delay of game is a funny concept. You penalize a player or a team for unnecessarily slowing the pace of the game, then spend more time sending him to the sin bin than the original infraction took in the first place.

While this oxymoron of a penalty has its value, one variant of it certainly must be done away with once and for all: the puck-over-the-glass call. To gain a better understanding of the futility, let us contrast this penalty against other attempts to speed up the game.

Exhibit A) No changes after icing: Now there folks is a prime example of a logical and useful rule. This discourages teams from dumping the puck, and creates a scoring chance for the opponent when and if they do, compensating for time lost.

Exhibit B) Removal of the two-line pass: This is (IMO) the best change of the post-lockout NHL. It opens up the game, forces defenders to stay on their toes, enhances the breakout, and once in a while sends a Marain Gaborik type player off to the races in hockey’s best one-on-one battle: a breakaway.

Exhibit C) Limiting goaltenders’ puck handling options: Practically what this rule does is hamper the all-powerful trap, and it helps teams get around systems where all you do on defence is clog up the neutral zone. Inadvertently or not, it has probably led to more goals than any other new rule. (Excluding the shootout, wiseguy! )

Then we have the stupid, stupid rule of firing the puck over the glass. First of all, it’s obvious that any player who fires the puck over the glass doesn’t mean to, because no one would do it knowing they’d get a penalty. Second of all, most times it’s just a tired player who put a little too much juice into his flick of the wrist, and had no intention of even getting it that high even if there wasn’t a penalty associated. Third of all, it’s costing way too many important games.

Team Canada of 2008 is rolling around in their graves until we do away with this moronic ‘rule’ some attention-seeking nutcase dreamt up.

-The New Kid on the Block
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Keith
Top Prospect



21 Posts

Posted - 06/15/2008 :  10:34:10  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I completely agree, someone tell me how this rule actually helps in any way all it does is give the refs one more thing to do

They shouldnt make up rules just cause other rules dont work
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Leafs_Fan_67
Top Prospect



14 Posts

Posted - 06/15/2008 :  11:42:39  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Alex

June 12, 2008

The firing of Paul Maurice was a cop-out by MLSE, and the hiring of Ron Wilson is a feeble attempt to put the city under the illusion that they actually have a plan.



Couldnt agree more. MLSE needs patience. There has not been a day when they arent in the news, what does that say? They need a real plan, not a guy who just listens to whatever the public or the shareholders want. Cliff Fletcher is trying to do it overnight


Edited by - Leafs_Fan_67 on 06/15/2008 11:45:09
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MardiGras
Top Prospect



20 Posts

Posted - 06/15/2008 :  14:05:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Alex

2) In the second part, if Tiger thinks watching hockey on T.V. is boring, I’m itching to learn what his attitude is towards televised golf. How’s about they introduce a glowing golf ball, now there’s a worthy idea! Watching the PGA tour is like watching three hours of clouds and sky and the occasional tree thrown in for good measure.



My feelings exactly! Watching golf on t.v. today has been an absolute snooze fest, it,s either that or some boring soccer match... hockey is the only really fun sport to watch where you can enjoy a game no matter who plays, golf is the most ridiculous sport, id say ppl only watch it on tv because they want to know who is winning at every second, no once actually enjoys watchin.
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8190 Posts

Posted - 06/15/2008 :  14:44:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by MardiGras

quote:
Originally posted by Alex

2) In the second part, if Tiger thinks watching hockey on T.V. is boring, I’m itching to learn what his attitude is towards televised golf. How’s about they introduce a glowing golf ball, now there’s a worthy idea! Watching the PGA tour is like watching three hours of clouds and sky and the occasional tree thrown in for good measure.



My feelings exactly! Watching golf on t.v. today has been an absolute snooze fest, it,s either that or some boring soccer match... hockey is the only really fun sport to watch where you can enjoy a game no matter who plays, golf is the most ridiculous sport, id say ppl only watch it on tv because they want to know who is winning at every second, no once actually enjoys watchin.



This is all about personal preference and appreciation. Personally, after hockey my two favorite sports on TV to watch are golf and football (what most would call soccer).

I play a lot of golf and football so to watch the pro's is a treat for me. I appreciate a day like today where I can shoot a pretty good round by my standards in the morning and then watch how golf is really supposed to be played by the pro's.
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Axey
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
877 Posts

Posted - 06/16/2008 :  12:12:09  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I agree with Beans here, I love Soccer and enjoy watching a match on TV, it basically comes down to understanding of the game and appreciation of the game. Also I don't think we hockey fans should bash the sport of golf for Tiger's comments but bash him more so. I'm sure there are alot of golf players that enjoy hockey very much.
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/16/2008 :  13:17:49  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
June 16, 2008

Rumors are flying left right and centre in what has been officially dubbed by me as the NHL’s answer to e-talk daily. Let’s run through a couple real quick.

Yashin interested in the Islanders

First off, there’s a fat chance that Yashin’s heart is actually in Long Island. What I read into this whole story is that Alexei wants back into the NHL and is looking to draw some attention before the curtain closes on him for good. The Isles offence is pitiful, but Yashin is not the answer. Even if he does get signed, this one has dud written all over it.

Leafs nation receives more to digest

We can’t go a day without hearing news from T.O., and bigger than the story of Al Coates inking with the buds is the increasingly good chance that Brian Burke is next on their agenda. Put two and two together guys, the Maple Leafs are trying very hard to seduce Mr. Burke to leave Anaheim. Even so, I’ll venture to say the Leafs choke as usual and miss their big-ticket item in Brian Burke. He is a man of principle who wants to give his owners ample opportunity to keep him in town. Then again, we never know what happens behind closed doors and passes under the table…

In other news, the soap opera that is Jason Blake finally decided he wants to play in Toronto. Well, isn’t that dandy? At a cool four million a season who says the Leafs see you as part of the future? Neidermayer and Selanne have paved the way for the NHLs Prima Donnas to take their sweet time while the hockey world awaits, but Blake missed the boat on this one.

Sens taking a step in the right direstion

The signing of Craig Hartsburg by the Senators gives me reason enough to believe that they may find their stride again. Blind faith is a big part of that change of heart, but I think that if the big name guys in Ottawa can buy into his plan, the rest will follow suit. If they get a goalie (or Ray Emery smartens up) and start the season on a high note, they can easily be the team they were two years ago.

All hope is far from lost in Pittsburgh

And finally, lurking sneakily in the shadows is a man named Ray Shero who may cement the impossible in the weeks to come. Malkin is reportedly close to a deal, and Hossa is talking with the club. Meanwhile, they bought some time with their goalie by offering him salary arbitration. All this may cause the naysayers to shift in their seats as the Penguins look to go for broke one last time.

Before we go, I’m going to say that the pieces are in place for the Sens and Pens to share some of the glory in the east in the 2009 season, but time will tell. Rest assured you’ll be hearing from me soon.

-The New Kid on the Block
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BradTheBadDad
Top Prospect



73 Posts

Posted - 06/16/2008 :  18:03:51  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You seem pretty adept at sperating the truth from the myth Alex, I agree with 99 percent of what you said.

One thing I do have my reservations about though is the situation with the Penguins. I don't think they can be as good next season as they were this season. Even if they lock up the big names, they let Malone, Roberts and other key ingredients slip away. They are stuck between a rock and a hard place, but Shero is good at making the important decisions. You sign your stars, it's a no-brainer, even though everyone seemed so confused about the situation. One hard thing about being a GM in the NHL is sorting through everything and being able to make logical decisions.

Anyone who said Roberts or Malone should be resigned wasn't looking at the big picture in my humble opinion. Ray Shero has been doing a great job given his circumstance.

''Eat. Sleep. Hockey''
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Alex
PickupHockey All-Star



Canada
2816 Posts

Posted - 06/17/2008 :  05:32:01  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
June 17, 2008

Today’s blog will serve as a benchmark for any future installment of the Alex Blog. I’m looking to open up a can of worms that is simply in a league of its own today, so brace yourselves.

Let’s cut to the chase. I have two things to say that will give some of you early wrinkles.

1) Wayne Gretzky was the most dominant athlete in major sports, and is head and shoulders above any other hockey player. Ooh, I’m going to get chewed alive for that one! But now to stir the pot even further: 2) Hockey’s prodigy is being made a mockery of as we speak by none other than Tiger Woods.

Allow me to shed light on where I’m coming from. While watching the final holes of the US Open yesterday, it dawned on me that no other athlete has conquered his sport in quite as dramatic a fashion as Mr. Woods. 14 Major ‘ships and 65 PGA events all under his belt, and not a day over 33. Who else owns their sport the way Tiger does? Gretzky did to a point, but is being lapped by the PGA’s one and only.

Think basketball and who pops to mind? Michael Jordan, K.A.J., Wilt the Stilt Chamerblain, Moses Malone, etc. The NBA is too young to have experienced her heyday and as a result no one player outshines the other. Over in the NFL, there are too many positions to have one player be the poster-boy. Ditto goes for the MLB. Joe Malone, Peyton Manning, Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron, Pete Rose… my knowledge in both those sports is little to nothing, but ignorance is bliss. Soccer is very hard for me to profile, but names like Beckham, Pele, Zidane and Ronaldo instantly jump to mind. Tennis is a challenge as well, but Sampras, Federer and Agassi are safe bets.

The point is, nearly no sports have one guy who held a monopoly on every stat in the record book in quite the same way as the Great One. The only one I would justify holding in higher esteem is American pro cyclist Lance Armstrong.

This isn’t even about who was the best or the most skilled, though I’d be delighted to have that debate in its place and time. The fact of the matter is, everyone associates hockey with Wayne Gretzky, and it’s because he owns every significant statistical record in the book. For a period of time it looked like Wayne Gretzky would leave his mark as the most dominant athlete ever, and few would be able to present a strong, convincing case against it. No other sport ever saw one guy demolish anything and everything in his path like Gretzky did.

And then came Tiger. At age 32 he has ‘most successful golfer ever’ all but in the bag. I’m going to shy away from listing all his achievements in this post, simply because it would not do his illustrious (albeit relatively short) career justice.

The point is, Tiger Woods will become the most dominant athlete in the history of modern sport. It’s a bitter pill to swallow. The guy who all but threw hockey under the bus will take over Gretzky as the single greatest athlete. But hey, I don’t make the news I just report it.

P.S. Reply, because I have made the executive decision to dedicate my next blog to responding to comments I receive for penning this article.

-The New Kid on the Block
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SuperSakic
Rookie



Canada
192 Posts

Posted - 06/17/2008 :  06:50:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sheesh! Puh-lease! How many tournaments does Tiger do in a year? And how many did Gretzky get to do? Gretzky only got one shot a year to win a championship. Tiger probably does something like 3-4 a year. What else is he gonna do? I don't watch golf, so I am not going to get into any technicalities of the sport itself, but I think his tourneys last something like a week, whereas the NHL season lasts close to a YEAR! How many opponents does Tiger have, and how many opponents did Gretzky have at one time? I could understand it as a fair comparison if Tiger were playing one tournament for a whole year, then you would be valid in saying that he went through something MINUTELY similar to the physical rigors required for the NHL. As well, Gretz had to rely on other teammates. Maybe if hockey were a one-on-one sport you could ALMOST compare the two sports. Or maybe if they allowed body checks in golf you could ALMOST say they are comparable.

I'm sure that there's Dart Throwers out there that are the best at their sport, or maybe Ping Pong players, or maybe Lawn Bowlers, or maybe Horseshoe Tossers. They have poker players on sports channels nowadays as well...

What about that guy (Fischer was his name or something?) that was a chess master? He beat a freakin computer! Maybe we should say that he was the best athlete? Let's see Tiger beat a robot. Then I will call him "the best GOLF PLAYER" - not ATHLETE!

Edited by - SuperSakic on 06/17/2008 06:53:23
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