Just collude already

- December 6th, 2012

A contentious issue for NHL owners and players, we hear, is the maximum length of contracts.
Owners want it to be five years, to protect themselves from themselves.
Players want it to be seven years, so they can take advantage of the irresponsible owners.
The solution, of course, is simple.
Owners need to give in to the players on this one. Agree to the seven years – then never sign anybody to a deal longer than five.
I guess I just don’t understand how collusion can be proven.
“Why aren’t you going longer than five years on this deal, Mr. Melnyk?”
“Because five years is long enough, Your Honor. There are all sorts of things that can happen to a player over a half a decade. The biggest fear is his production can drop. I’m not risking $7 million a season that Joe Schmoe will still be as good as he is now in five years. He’s lucky I’m going that long. And why should he be guaranteed that kind of money for that long? I have no guarantee that the fans will still be filling my building in five years, or even next year, for that matter. I have no guarantee that the league won’t be down the toilet in five years. Especially right now. After both sides made a complete joke of ourselves with this wrestling match over the fans dollars, after we risked the cancellation of yet another season because of our greediness and utter stupidity, I had no guarantee the fans would even come back when we finally did get this agreement signed. Five years is long enough. I’m not going longer.”
“Hard to argue with that, Mr. Melynk. I find you and your fellow owners not guilty of collusion. Case closed.”
Somebody please tell me contract lengths aren’t a stumbling block and can’t be a potential deal breaker. Tell me this isn’t true. Because if owners can’t figure out a way around this issue, they don’t even deserve to have franchises.

Categories: Hockey

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29 comments

  1. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Unfortunately Don it is not that simple.

    Say Joe Schmoe wants an 8-year deal and was offered one by Washington before the lockout but now it’s 5-year deal. He goes to Nashville, five years. Toronto? Five years. At that point you start wondering if there is, indeed, collusion. How to prove it?

    Well…all these lovely Android phones, team emails, phone coversations, texting…all it takes is a league investigator to find ONE instance of a team owner asking another to not go over five years and you have a massive, massive mess on your hands. And who knows what the penalty for THAT will be? Hundreds of thousands of dollars? Loss of franchise status? Ownership change? At the very least disgrace for the team?

    Doesn’t seem worth it, though I do agree with you in principle. There’s always goiing to be one team that rogues it and spoils it for everyone else. Collusion only works if all 30 agree with each other…can you see Melnyk agreeing with Tannenbaum agreeing with Jacobs agreeing with Molson…hmm.

  2. Don Brennan says:

    Honor all existing deals, Pierre. After that, yeah, I guess you’d have to count on owners to abide by their secret agreement. They’d just have to put some trust in each other, but if somebody breaks from the pack, they break. Then it’s their problem

  3. Bobby Goodman says:

    I believe there has been and always will be collusion but I don’t blame them at all. There was table talk back in the 50s and 60s (when a Union was absolutely necessary) and I am quite sure it is going on today. Afterall, some of them are very familiar with breaking the law, aren’t they?

    Watching the sports last night I suspect most were encouraged when Fehr stood in front of the cameras and shared to the status of the negotiations. But, it was short lived. The Smug Smurph killed that in a hurry. The entire affair is a complete farce and an embarrassment of epic proportions. Fehr is an extremely bright man, could he have miss-read the situation? Absolutely not. It is a case of silly bugger to the extreme. Watching Fehr in the media scrum, I noticed his facial expressions and body language belied the words that spewed so elaquently; I know he was lying from the get go. All the players lined up like 8th graders behind the Pied Piper looked solemn. I knew then that even with the magical contributions of that wizard on and off the ice, Crosby, things weren’t good. We can all kiss this season goodbye and I do not give a damn.

    Alfredsson “sees both sides of he Zibanejad issue (not a surprise) but when push came to shove he believes Zibby should go and participate in the WJHC (mais oui mon ami!). Don, when God supports him going, doesn’t that trump what the Murrays are doing? In all the years God has pulled on a Sens jersey, I have NEVER witnessed him go against management! But this is a very personal issue and involves his country, a countryman and national pride. Moreover, God knows what is best for a 19 year old kid.

    I suggested in an earlier post (which like others previous, may not get published) that the Murrays have demonstrated a pattern of inconsistencies in their tenure here; the 21 year old Silfverberg was encouraged to return to Sweden and play another year in the SEL after scoring 18g the year before but, it is mandatory for a 19 year old’s development to play in the AHL after showing nothing in the SEL the year previous. Can someone, anyone explain the logic here? Sly will be 23 at least before he plays in the NHL so why the hurry with Zibby? Wouldn’t the argument that Zibby needs to learn the N/A game be legitimate if he starred the year before on the big ice surface? It certainly makes no sense if he had a dismal one (which he did)!

    I like the kid. I love his attitude, courage, wheels, physicality, but I hate the way he is being managed. The star making machinery have been pumping out he volume (as they did with Butler, Runds’bad, Wierchoch, Turris, Gryba, Da Oats-like Costa, Sly et al) and of course the media were all on board despite evidence to the contrary. Confidence is everything in sport. Once shaken it is very hard to get it back. Give the kids every opportunity to be successful. They shouldn’t be burdened by unfair expectations playing in an environment where they will struggle. Allow them to star first!

  4. Lee D says:

    Ha Ha, the owners have absolutely no control over themselves. They are like drunks at an open bar party and asking the bartenders not to serve more that one drink each…..

  5. Bobby Goodman says:

    The Baby Sens won again! Bishop was outstanding facing 41 and stopping 40 (his counterpart faced 31). As he plays more he will reduce his GAA which is skewed because of the 6 he allowed his first game (or was it his second…not sure).

    Wiercoch deserves a lot of credit, he has elevated his game; he’s scoring goals, accumulating points and he leads the team with the best plus/minus! This is outstanding and I congratulate him. I could be wrong yet again and he very well may be a bonafide NHLer afterall!

    Send Petersson home; reading between the lines and making a huge assumption, I suspect he isn’t making an effort.

    Is Zibby ill? He missed the game last night and I wonder if it was due to his health or was he assigned to the press box as a designated sitter! His numbers do not support the claim he is developing his skills in the AHL no matter what the Murrays may say or what the scribes write. Damn shame. So, I have another question, assuming he scores 5 goals (as he did in SEL which got him promoted to the AHL this year) will that be good enough for him to play for the big club or, would he return to the AHL? The Murrays have been consistent and determined to make certain players successful whether they are successful or not. The problem is, most of the time they didn’t succeed! Butler played 60 games last year and didn’t perform (and remember Timmie saying “if isn’t scoring goals he isn’t contributing”????). Da Costa and Rund’sbad are other examples. So wont it be interesting to follow poor Zibby’s “development”. Some other questions I would ask Timmie include: exactly what skills are you hoping Zibby develops at the AHL level; and, at what point (should things continue as they are), do you fall on your sword and say it was a mistake?

  6. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Agree Don, besides iit would make for a nice feather in a cap for a reporter like Bruce or yourself or CJ to uncover something like this. ;)

  7. ChokerHater says:

    But they can’t trust each other, look at the cheapest team in the league, NJD, signing that Russian for what? ten years and 100 million dollars, just to get in with the other guys.
    The owners don’t trust themselves or the other owners. I’ve said from the start, this strike is to protect the owners, from themselves

  8. Bobby Goodman says:

    Don, wonderful article in today’s Sun on D2. He sounds like a great kid and I wish him all the very best (I always ask this question, can he skate like an NHLer?). He tops the team with 8 goal goals, leads the league in shorties as you indicated and he’s big! I do like big (6-3, 200lbs) Canadian boys and…he is 22 years old…the same age as Sly! I wouldn’t think even an average skater would lead any professional league in short handed goals if they they weren’t great skaters. I know very little about the kid other than the stats I read and he has really has emerged as a player. I don’t know if he is aggressive but at that size, he could be and good on him for making an effort to do so. A player can develop toughness but he cannot transform into a fighter; that you are born with. One needs to be very confident, willing and committed when dropping the gloves.

    Choke, that may be the not so transparent agenda and they can accomplish it by holding fast…and they will. It really is indeed a case of silly bugger at its finest. These billionaire owners grant their GMs authorization to award $100m contracts and then they lock the players out. Aren’t they the ones who charged Bettman with the responsibility to negotiate the 57-43 split last go around and then bless it? The players, will NEVER recover what they have lost. With Crosby, Parise and the like losing more of the $12-13m (whatever) this year the longer the impasse continues, you have to ask, what are they fighting for? And then you have guys like God suggesting that that if it was put to a player vote, 100% of them would support Fehr…seriously? I am certain Carkner who was rewarded a 3 year $3m plus contract is one of many who are not on board. He certainly knows the 3 years will, in all probability, take him to the end of his career and losing 1/3 of that contract is huge! Then there are the majority of players who earn the minimum wage and are limited to the average of 4 years in the league. One year is even more important to them!

    I do find it funny to see ex-players standing shoulder to shoulder with the Smug Smurph and his team; I am at a loss to understand what Shanahan has every done that makes him THE candidate for several roles in the League Office. Mathieu Schneider is an other ex-player who has managed to secure a spot snuggling up close and personal with Donald Fehr.

    Have we seen any other GM so close to Bettman as we have witnessed with Lord Burke? Anyone agree with me that his next gig will be a return to the league office?

  9. Mike8888 says:

    Bobby,
    Re Shanahan: Arent you always saying that being a former player is enough experience for most NHL jobs?

  10. Bobby Goodman says:

    Indeed I do Mikey, but as a Coach, General Manager, A/GM, Director of Player Development and the like. I don’t know what Shanahan does now but he is tight with the League Office. One of his jobs was to represent the National Hockey League in business related matters over seas! I wonder what business related skills he acquired with his HS education (if he has one) and 20 year playing career. He, the one with a gazillion penalty minutes accumulated in his career was responsible for making the game softer. He is the guy who came up with the brilliant idea to have a draft for the All Star Game. The draft is a disgrace and reminds me of a daytime TV game show. It contributed nothing but it did embarrass some players and should have embarrassed the league. If it all makes sense to you MIkey, great, but it makes no sense to me.

    It looks like the media (all of them) are slowly but surely taking sides in the labour dispute. Perhaps I am wrong (I often am) but they seam to be siding with the players.

    Isn’t it interesting Mikey that the NHLPA wouldn’t embrace a blind ballot. I am a strong believer in referendums. In the real world referendums could settle the very political issues that politicians are fearful of: abortion etc. In the NHL it would be interesting to see what would happen if the issue was put to the players. 200 are in Europe and don’t really care and most of the remaining players represent to 80% who earn the least. If the PA truly represents the players, what’s the issue?

  11. Bobby Goodman says:

    God is referenced in 5 stories on the front page…yikes. To publish the contrived and feeble “40 reasons Ottawa loves Alfredsson” doesn’t serve the Paper well. In two decades will we read the “60 reasons” or will the media have let go by then? Dum Cherry never slammed God at all and I do expect more from Bruce. There is lots to write about but REAL stories are ignored. Shame really.

  12. Bobby Goodman says:

    Coming back from an appointment, I tuned in for comic relief on 1200 (I cried). York, Yorks, Yorkie spun yet another yarn about his playing days (he played in the NHL don’t you know). I suspect he and the other clown were going over Hamerlik’s recent comments regarding the labour dispute and York, Yorks, Yorkie suggested he will have some difficulty in practice when play resumes (inferring some players on his own team will take some liberties physically). He told the listening audience (there may have been 12 in Ottawa at that time) that when he “played” and the “team” decided they would go out drinking and one player did not, he would have a tough time the next practice. Honest to God that is what he said! Knowing some who have played professionally I can say this is absolute hogwash! I have never witnessed that at any level I played. Some may have a beef with another and they would settle things mano a mano. If the “team” had an issue (especially at the NHL level) the Captain would get involved. But, to go after a player for not joining the others who went out to drink is just plain silly; but I look at the source.

  13. Daniel Murphy says:

    I personally can’t listen to the Team 1200 at all anymore. It is simply bad and boring radio. Listening to JR, Warnsie, Simmer, Yorkie, Versage etc..was agonizing and painful. Hell, it got so bad, Pierre Maguire was almost welcomed relief.

    There will be hockey New Year’s eve. It is the perfect scenario which will make the owners and the players come out smelling like roses. Imagine the excitement when it is announced NHL hockey will start on New Years eve. Naturally every game will be compared to the famous USSR/Montreal 1976 New Year’s classic.

  14. PaV says:

    Bobby, you did better than me! I tunred on the team on the way home and all I heard from ‘Simmer’ was “… when I was the GM…” so I turned it off.

    People like ‘Simmer’ and ‘Grossie’ and ‘Yorkie’ want to be the players ‘buddies’ so they spin the lock out so it seems that the players get a bum deal.

    The players are going to get screwed.. They have no idea what is going to happen. Do you really think Mr Billionare is sacred of the players not playing? REALLY? I am sure Melynk is laying in bed right now, unable to move because he is so depressed that his team isn’t on the ice.

    The players are going to lose. The NHL and NHLPA are going to lose fans. They already have and will continue to do so. The impact this has had in the states is brutal. You thijk FLA, CJB, TB are hurting now? Just wait till the game comes back!

  15. Bobby Goodman says:

    Hockey Canada makes it difficult for me to get really excited about the WJHC. Year after year we see a pattern of fabulous hockey players being shown the door; it happened again this year with the news Monoham was cut. He apparently didn’t show enough in those few days including one exhibition game but who did? Using the Coaches logic, shouldn’t Subban get axed too? The notion that the players need to showcase their talent/worth in such a brief period is crazy stupid. It is made even worse when Spott (off) scares/freezes the kids telling them earlier this summer he would “not tolerate mistakes”. News flash for you dummy, hockey is a game of mistakes!

    Canada’s Juniors will be playing against the world’s best and didn’t Monohan star in the OHL’s exhibition game agaionst he best Russia has to offer (and they are one of the countries favoured to win Gold). Monoham is 6-2 and weighs in around 200 lbs. He is a fabulous skater. He possesses outstanding vision and find guys in the open and get the puck. He is physical and will go into the corners and come with the bisquite. He has an great shot and can score goals. Before his suspension, he was 4th in scoring, playing on the very worst team in the entire league! NHL players marvelled about his skill and even Spott told the media he was “NHL ready”!? But he isn’t Team Canada ready…does that make any sense?

    I have issues with Hokey Canada and how they conduct their business. Monohan is one of many who didn’t make the grade. Year after year they pick coaches who do not possess outstanding records winning championships. Why was Dave Cam-Moron chosen. What has Spott-off done? What’s interesting is the absence of Dale Hunter. Since the Hunters took over the London Knights they have been the best franchise in all of Canada. Hasn’t Dale won 2 championships (took Killer 3 decades)? Mark and Dale do have an eye for talent year after year recognized as one of the country’s best. Dale has coached kids with enormous talent who went on to star in the NHL, so you know he is good with the kids! So someone/anyone tell me why he is ignored by Nicholson and Hokey Canada. For Nicholson to suggest Spott is “the very best Coach for this team” is laughable. To read that he is not concerned about the Gold winning drought very sad.

    Canada will ice a fabulous team that could have been much better had they kept Monohan, but their blind alegience to a system and a model trumps logic. Maybe it’s not right but I lose interest when kids like Kane get cut, kids like Peumpal, Ceci & Tofoli don’t even get an invitation to try out for the team, RNH gets cut and when a kid with Monohan’s ability is returned to his junior team. Who would like to take a bet that Murpahy makes the hockey club? What has he shown in the Camp so far. I will bet anything Subban is on the team. The fact is, I think Subban should be on the team because the notion of selecting the best in a few days is nonsense. Select the best damn…

  16. ChokerHater says:

    Bobby, just a little friendly medical advice

    STOP LISTENING

    and I think you probably over estamted his audience

  17. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Bobby, the funniest thing about that “40 Reasons” article is that Aeden Helmer is wrong on two points!

    Johnny Gottselig is the first Euro to captain a Cup team, he was from Odessa, Russia and won wit hthe Blackhawks…in 1940s! Didn’t Jacques Martin win a Jack Adams here, so what the heck is this talk that only Alfredsson and Karlsson have won an individual award? PRetty bad stuff there.

    Yorkie talking about drinking? It is like the Pope talking about God or myself complaining, it’s old hat. Jason York must have some heavy blackmail material on John Rodenburg or he is simply a useful stooge that toes the party lie for the Senators, but to me he is an embarassment. I now listen to TSN Radio in the mornings, afternoons and CKAC at night. The Team 1200? Once in a blue moon but until they dump Simpson, Yorkie, Steve “Toronto Kissed My Wife and I’m Oh So Terribly Upset Fifteen Years Later” Warne they are horrid outsde of Pierre McGuire’s segment.

    As for Tim and Bryan Murray and Zib etc…I have a feeling they are obligated to draft at least one SEL player each year to keep ALfredsson happy. How else to explain Zib over the more NHL-ready COuturier? It is baffling to me.

    The media are pushing for Silfverberg to be the next Alfredsson, all well and good but need we remind everyone that it took us getting a 50-goal scorer, 3 30-point defensement, a decent second-liner in Comrie and Bryan Murray…as COACH to motivate God and his compatriots? We lost to absolutely inferior teams year after year and we never got any anger from Alfie. Witticisms like “Too much Swedish not enough finish.” This year he DID get upset and it was great! Where was that against Buffalo, Washington, the Leafs…we saw it against Pittsburgh.

    Can Silf PLEASE get that passion going NOW? Having to wait another 10-15 years for Silf + Zib and the Murrays to figure it out so we can get past the first round and MAYBE advance to ONE conference finals…yikes! At least give us a new GM that will put a fire under the backsides of these all-too-coddled players, including the increasingly aberrant Karlsson who cannot respect referees! Why throw your stick at a ref in FInland? GROW UP ERIK YOU’VE WON NOTHING IN ANY POST-SEASON. Nothing in the NHL playoffs, nothing at the worlds and likely nothing at the Olympics! BE A TEAM GUY, accept criticism and listen to the refs nad authority figures. Stop being an invidivdual, it’s strange and weird and quite frankily not a little frightening!

    Merry Christmas all, hopefully we miss the rest of the season and the players get it from the owners!

  18. Bobby Goodman says:

    The Dale Hunter led London Knights continue their winning ways. After winniing 19 straight they have their sights set on establishing a league record. Of course they competed for the Memorial Cup last year and it looks like they will again this year. They are the League leader in the OHL but what is really impressive is they have scored more goals than anyone else, while allowing the least number scored against! That my friends, is coaching but obviously not the kind of coaching Hokey Canada requries to win World Junior Hockey Championships.

    Steve Spott has been coaching in the OHL for 12 years and a head coach for the last 5. But he, like Cam-moron is a far better choice than Dale Hunter, can someone, anyone explain why?.

    Seth Grfiffith plays for the Knights and he has 58 points so far, only 4 out of the league lead and is +17; Max Domi is +21 with 45 points. I don’t why they weren’t given an opportunity to try out for team Canada. Matt Peumpal is a natural goals scorer and may score 50 this year but he too wasn’t invited to camp to even “try out’ for the team. What could he do with Monoham at center?

    Wasn’t it predictable Murphy was going to make the team? Wasn’t it predictable that Subban would make the team (even though he was grossly outplayed by a goaltender who was cut!). What’s comical is how Hokey Canada can rationalize their decisions. In one breath, they say “he didn’t show us anything in the mini-camp” to justify someone being cut and in the other they attribute his ” body of work” for someone they want on the team. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t dislike any of the kids but I do hate some of the decisions that are made (just like the NHL!).

    I would like to know what the criteria is for determining who will be the Coach year after year. That is yet another great question that will never get asked and story that never gets told. Enough of the pictures of God and stories about nothing. Are we to assume Andre Petersson is sick and that is why he has missed the last 5-6 games. Why has he only scored 2 goals so far in his second year in the league but scored 23 as a 20 year old rookie? Is Zibby still sick and that is why he has missed 6 games?

  19. ChokerHater says:

    wow, awaiting moderation from Dec 13th
    Think someone lost interest?

  20. Bobby Goodman says:

    Isn’t it sad that hockey player(s) identified by our photop focussed Mayor as Community leader(s) only go to visit with the kids at Cheo when it is organized/sponsored by the hockey club. Is this worthy of hero worship? Due to the player lock-out, they are forbidden to associate with their Hockey Club, but, it doesn’t prohibit them performing good will on their own volition…does it?!

    I think it is admirable that the Coach and his Assistants went but lets be honest, the kids want to see the players not the coaches (I would bet most of them wouldn’t even know who the coaches were unless they were told). Can you imagine an adult telling the sick kids that the hockey players are not coming? It is kind of sick, don’t you think?

    It lends a lttle credence to the what I have been saying all along; only when pressed into service do these “Civic and Community Leaders/Heroes” get invovled. I would have loved it if someone asked our beloved Mayor (who is there for any opening, even a can of beans) what defines Community Leadership? I will say it goes far beyond what has been invented. God lives a very private life. He is uncomfortable in the public eye. He can’t utter 4 words together without a loud and prolonged UUUUHHHHHH. I can’t think of anything he has said that is…worthy. I don’t know what he has done that might be described as leading a cause (unless of course you include him responding to a request to be the face of “YKWIA”). To suggest he (God) knows what mental ilness is because he has a sister who suffers from depression is not necessarily compelling, it is a common phenomina…1 in 5 suffer from mental ilness and many suggest the situation is much worse than that.

    Wouldn’t it be refreshing to witness players summon their “community spirit” and actually do something on the own? Why couldn’t those who have been here in Ottawa all year organize trips without being told to do it by their employers?

    We are so starved for real heroes we now stoop to inventing them. We make ambulance chasing lawyers who defend the indefenceable, civic heroes and champions for civil rights. They too are there for any and every “Gala”!

    There are real heroes and champions for civil rights but you wont find them in the light. They do not need the spot light, they operate in the dark. To find them, one only needs to look in the right places.

  21. Bobby Goodman says:

    I wonder if yelling profanities at the kids who will representing Canada in the WJHC is motivating in any way? Spott-off had them on the ice the day after arrival and brow beat them for playing what he called “shinny hockey”. With 14 hour delta in the time zone, I wouldn’t blame the kids for playing shinny, indeed I would have endorsed it. The Coach should build momentum on the ice as they adjust to the time zone. Oviously he suffered fatigue, witness how he peformed!

    It is my opinion that any suspension dished out in N/A should have nothing to do with WJHC eligiblilty. This event, like Santa, comes but once a year and for most, once in a lifetime! There seems to be no consistency how the punishment is dished out and offtimes the officials get it wrong. Why should a kid like Noesen be punished twice for the same deed? He will pay the price and sit for 10 games but now he sits for, what, 6 more? So he incurs a 16 game suspension? Again, this is just needless and just plain silly. The purpose of the event is to identify Junior supremacy in the world of hockey, denying a Country to ice the very best players and a kid a once in a lifetime opportunity has nothing to do with that!

    Like Monohan, Ceci, Peumpal, I feel bad for Noesen. In the business world, process and protocol trumps results and reason. It is the same in Amateur Hockey.

  22. Bobby Goodman says:

    I read that Kilrea dismisses the 67s miserable performance this year as a naturally ocurring event “being caught in the cycle”…seriously? I saw them play early in the season and back then I knew they were awful. How often does the cycle happen I wonder…every 3, 5 or 7 years? If this is a natural ocurrance that every junior hockey club can expect to have happen, why is London immune? Certainly there are up and down years but surely a team can’t expect to have one as bad as what the 67s are experiencing, can they? If so, why?

    Zibby has now missed 6 or 7 games in Binghampton; is he still sick or is it something else? Either way, I would love to know? Rather than read two paragraphs of drivel about what Daisey the Air Rifle and Van Allen have to say about the lockout, why don’t we get something far more worthy? Does the Sun Sports really need another pic of God and a two line bit on his status? Really? Derrick Brassard is one of 5 players that left their team in Europe, what exactly is going on? I wonder if the Eurpean teams will be as willing to sign NHL players the next time there is a lockout (I suspect they wont). Shane Prince is scoring goals and it’s fabulous. Sly is scoring goals and now leads the team with 9! I would love to know more about what is going on in Bingo. Has Petersson been the designated sitter? How does he feel about it and how long before the team allows him to go home. Wiercoch has to be the suprise story and a welcome one at that for the Baby Sens. I suggested before that Boro should curb his enthusiasm for the fisticuffs and I wonder if his injury has anything to do with that.

    In our Sun and the other paper, only Methot was recognized as “one of the 7 Sens players” that went to CHEO…why? I commend them all and they should have been identified. I strongly suspect God didn’t go for if he did, the story and his pic would occupy several pages and again he would be recognized as a community leader.

    If there is to be hockey in the New Year I for one will not be as enthusiastic; I will watch, but there will be distractions. The PGA starts in January and this year promises to be the most exciting year in its history. There are phenominal golfers from all over the world who are unafraid and can win at anytime. The Tour is deeper now than anytime in its history. Baseball and in particular the Blue Jays will inch ever closer to spring training. As a huge baseball fan, I am very excited to see what the team will do; on paper they may have the best team and deepest pitching in both leagues! There are lots of distractions and with lockout, it is possible many will not care about hockey. Most certainly the teams will see a drop in attendance.

  23. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Don’t know what people think of this whole Turris back and forth but the kid complained in Phoenix, complained it was colder here than in Arizona when he got here and now he says there was nothing to do in Oulu and that they ate at truck stops? And now we see Evander Kane with handfuls of $100 bills (estimated at around $240,000) in Vegas…

    It’s becoming increasingly hard for me as a fan to have any sympathy for these guys. Not to put too fine a point on it, but yes their talent has led them to where they are and that’s fine! But show a little restraint, think before you criticize a city that welcomed you with open arms, use some of those $100s to help your family or the poor, take a step back and see that the extremely privileged don’t really have a right to complain about truck stop food, boring cities or whatnot.

    I have had a totally ravaging flu the past week but still got up at 5 a.m. every day to be at work by 7, out by 3:30 and don’t have access to the medical goodies they do. I make do though because my employer expects it from me and I’ll be out on my bum otherwise!

    I hope we lose the season (Heck two seasons!) if it means the players will regain some much-needed perspective.

  24. Bobby Goodman says:

    I taped the Team Canada vs Finland game (it is the only way to go (FF through much of the BS although I really like the honest/candid Ferarro). Subban, the kid who didn’t have perform in the mini-camp, looked week. Lipon, Hudon, Murphy, looked awful. Couldn’t the 6-2, 195 lb Monohan do better, as a talented centerman who is said to be in the top 5 in the draft this year, he can play in the middle or the outside! They had better get better or the team that has been promoted as one of Canada’s very best ever, may disapoint! It is a good thing they have Spott-off inspiring, motivating and leading the way!

    Speeking about the 67s, I wonder how a team can have but one on the entire roster that isn’t in the minus column. Good coaches will adjust the type of game they play based on the talent level. This team selected by the Coach/GM is not talent laden so they must play a style that focusses on defence first (not to ignore the offence, only prioritize on defence). While Ceci is one of the teams worst in the +/- (-16), Monohan is one of the best (-3). Perhaps it is Ceci’s game inside his blueline Hockey Canada didn’t like.

  25. Bobby Goodman says:

    Well, I tried. No matter what I cannot get any chatter going and nothing gets published…c’est domage…c’est la vie.

    Nevertheless, I want to take this opportinity to wish Don, Bruce and all my Blog Brothers a very Merry Christmas, and nothing but health and happiness in 2013 (maybe a little prosperity too huh).

  26. ChokerHater says:

    Merry Christmas everyone

    just one note

    looks like it’s not just Dany Boy that’s greedy eh!

  27. Bobby Goodman says:

    Murph, you got me laughing with the comment: “even Pierre Maguire was a welcome relief “in terms of” someone different to listen to “going forward’. As for the classic Montreal – Russia game, I never thought it was a classic at all mon ami. A one – one tie is as satisfying as kissing your sister and les Habitants completely dominated them “in terms of” having played far better hockey than they “in terms of” shots, puck possession etc. and it was only due to Tretiak’s heroics and “body of work” “in terms of stopping shots going…going backward”, that accounted for the tie!

    Pav my man, I have no sympathy at all for the players…none at all! I hazzard to think what many would be doing if they weren’t blessed. Does money corrupt them and that is why most feel entitled? Could it be the hero worship? Or, are they just that ignorant to what life is like for individuals in the real world? I suspect all three are at play. I am sure some wake up in the morning and wonder “how did I become a hero, a champion for the people, civic and community leader”? If I was to offer an explanation, I would suggest there are a few reasons as to why. In a frantic, creative and incessant effort by the hockey club(s) to increase their reach and patronage, they invent reasons beyond hockey for the masses to celebrate the players (leaders are thankful most men/women are ignorant). In a world that is frought with violence and stories that make us cringe and weep, we (the ignorant masses) want something, anything to rally around. Fans want and believe they have relationship, no matter how small, with the player(s). To read about them showing up for a black tie event or a staged visit somewhere, the fans share the fantasy. To invent the notion that they are “heroes, Kings and Gods and occupy a space with we ordinary and very unremarkable underlings, fans feel blessed (WWAD). It is all very sad really. With the lockout, wouldn’t, shouldn’t the Heroes, Kings and Gods have had the opportunity to do even more “community Service”?

    Pierre, I really like Turris but he, like many others, should think beyond the moment. They should ponder the cosequences of their actions. They need to understand that their thoughts expressed in cyber space goes beyond their army of worshipping “twits”. But, in today’s world, bad behaviour is accepted, expected and celebrated. In the end, there are no real consequences. I am sure that Turris enjoyed his time in Finland. How could someone only 23 years old not! I believe he is absolutely sincere about that, but, I also believe he said the nasty things too. You can do a hundred things right but people will remember the one thing that was bad most of the time (i.e. I built 100 bridges but they don’t ball be Bob the bridge builder….). Perhaps it is time someone took responsibility to train these privilidged few on the finer points of being human: humility, grace, respect, integrity…….”going forward”.

  28. Bobby Goodman says:

    You have to wonder why Nathan Mackinnon is getting slivers on the bench and only pressed into service when morons get thrown out. Mackinnon, a natural and gifted center should be given the opportunity to play and have the puck on his stick as much as possible, but Spott-off has other plans for him…or at least he did. When he plays, he owns the puck and if not, he is in relentless pursuit of it! He and his team mate in the Q have natural chemistry but…Spott-off knows better! Why play one line for an entire PP? I though this team was deep in talent? They may be but the could have been much better. Their little munchin defenceman is a liability but…it was his third and fnal chance to make the team and…he plays for Spott-off.

    With three kids now serving suspensions, perhaps Nail Yakupov is correct! Canadian do play a dirty game. How manyh other kids have incurred suspensions in this WJHC? Lipon, the kid who was passed over in two drafts, was irresponsible delivering a head shot that cost his team. What the hell was he thinking? Camara, definitely charged the Slovak kid and put him into never never land. Before that game, Jenner delivered a very late hit when the puck was on the other side of the rink (the kid obviously wasn’t expecting and was unprepared; he suffered a broken wrist and separated his shoulder. Are we to celebrate these. Is this what Hokey Canada wants to promote? Is MacNeil really better than the Ottawa 67s Monohan???? Je do not understand pas!

    I believe Canada can win playing any style but I would rather see them beat their oponents with their talent and not brute force.

    When I was a kid playing in the Westboro Hockey League for Westboro Sports, we made a special trip down to Lake Placid ever year for their annual tournament. It was the highlight of the year for me and my mates. There was a very special player who I looked up to (but never told him…I don’t know why). He was unbelievable. Blessed with size and skill he could take the puck form end to end with moves that belied his age. Moreover, he was a nice kid and great with us who were two years his junior. I read that he just passed away and it breaks my heart. He grew up and made the Ottawa 67s and scored the Franchises very first goal…his name is Steve Ostapyk. Had it not been for severe accident, he may have gone on to become a professional. You never knew it Steve, but you did inspire!

    On behalf of my brothers may I offer my most sincere condolences to Anna and the entire family and may God bless him.

  29. Bobby Goodman says:

    Andre Petersson isn’t dressing at all in Bingo and the team might as well send him home; perhaps there he can find his game and his heart. You have to wonder what happened to him…the guy who was to be Spezza’s winger for the next 10 years?! Didn’t Murray say that?

    Can Zibby really be missing all these games because of a stomach flue and having 4 wisdom teeth pulled? It doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. He hasn’t played the last 12 games which translates into what, 5 weeks! I would love to know what is going on but…with the same post sitting here idle for 3 weeks we can safely make the assumption someone has lost interest. Was it a wise move to have Zibby come here to play in the AHL when he showed nothing in the SEL? I don’t think so! But, the brass will weave some tail to rationalize. Whatever he/they may say, 1 goal in 16 games is awful as was his 5 last year in Sweden. It is another classic case of mis-managment.

    Boro’s injury must be worse that was reported; I think he has missed about 8 games! Wouldn’t it me nice to read about the Ottawa Senators farm team. particularly since there is no NHL hockey being played!!! We Sens fans have to be celebrating what Sly and Wiercoch are doing. Both are playing well and having outstanding years!

    I just blitzed through the Team Canada game versus the USA and if it wasn’t for Subban, it may have ended in a loss but because of his brilliance (finally) the boys in red and white won the game.

    Again, I don’t understand why Nathan Mckinnon spends so much time on the bench. Every time he is on the ice he makes something good happen. I love kids that can skate and want the puck and…do both with speed. To many, the puck is a boat anchor. He should see PP and PK time. Little Ryan Murphy can skate and has a shot but he isn’t playing very well at all and is a liability. They will be challenged tomorow night against the Russians.

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