I just wanted to pop in here with some notes and thoughts from the last few days.
- Anyone see Gretzky drop the F-bomb right after Grier scored the first goal in last night’s game between San Jose and Phoenix? I don’t know who he was directing it towards, perhaps an assistant coach said something stupid, but he clearly said F*@k you.” I wonder about the great one. If this coaching business is too much for him, or at least, the wrong direction. How do you, as the greatest player the game has seen, who saw the ice in a different way from your normal player, communicate your vision of hockey to your team of normal players?
- Perhaps he was frustrated over the penalty shot. I am still wondering where the penalty was. Stick on ice, not on body, taps the puck away, using the body to check the player, no holding. I hope the ref gets an email over that one. If the game didn’t feel tilted before, it certainly was after.
- Setoguchi’s first goal was absolutely beautiful. Falling to the ice, a desperate swipe at the puck, should be highlight reel for sure. That is, if we had a highlight reel.
- Speaking of highlight reel, what the hell is up with Versus? Four games to show highlights from, and all we get are goals. I get it, goals = outcome. Goals = excitement. Would it kill anyone to show a little more, like a few great saves? Or a few battles? Watch some CBC, and you see what I mean. They talk about the whole game. They talk about the battle. I understand that there are many variables involved in a Versus broadcast, and the decisions made about what to air, but that doesn’t mean we have to be left out on the dark. And I don’t want this to turn into the episode of Sports Night where Jeremy has to cut a baseball game down into a quick segment, and it winds up being almost as long as the game itself, but a little more would be nice.
- And speaking of Versus (wait for it), I thought that Joe Beninati did a good job of calling the Canes / Panthers game, which is to say, he didn’t forget about the game like many of the Versus crew is prone to do. For being a busy day, with HHOF inductions and all, and having Potvin on for a chat, they kept with the game pretty well. I think the experiment of having the backup goalie on to do analysis is dead. And thank god for that, since he had little to say, and his head took up too much room on the screen during a power play.
- Speaking of the Canes game, everyone is going to be talking about Erik Cole. Is he prone to neck injury? Will his career be cut short? What if he had hit the boards or a post, rather than a soft goalie? I’m sure he is asking himself those same questions. It was a scary scene after his injury, and seeing him carried off the ice on a stretcher is a hard thing to watch, but the Canes cowboyed up after a few strange minutes of hockey to seal the deal with just over a minute left. I’m sure the fans in Florida were expecting to leave with at least a point, but got nothing. Not the most exciting hockey I have ever seen, but it was still hockey.
- Speaking of the Cole injury, one of the general complaints about the MSM is that these are the type of stories that get latched on to and splashed around ad nausium, the negative hockey story. Someone gets hurt, someone gets attacked, someone does something stupid, and all you see for days is the stretcher, or the hit, or the blood. So my question is, are we any better? Did anyone see the lead image of today’s Ice Sheet at AOL Fanhouse? Yeah, just what you would expect, Cole on a stretcher. Now, understand, this isn’t so much a rip on the Fanhouse, but an assessment of the situation. You could view it as sensationalism, but it really isn’t. This incident was the story. As much as we want every person involved in hockey, be it a writer, coachr, coach, or reporter, to be an ambassador to the game all the time, that just isn’t the case, nor is it practical. You have to follow the story. I don’t like seeing the picture that much, but it paints an honest picture of the game in that moment. That’s all any of us can do. The blogosphere in general tends to admonish the MSM for it’s behavior around incidents like this, while doing the same thing. Because if it gets attention…
- Speaking of the MSM, Adrian Dater is talking down the crowd at the Avs game from the other night, but not like he did last time. This time, it’s all about the numbers. Dater says this, at his All Things Avs blog:
The Avs took a bigger lead in their division last night, and it was in front of the smallest crowd ever to watch one of their games in Denver.
Listen, I know that if I didn’t have a press pass, I would go to, like, one game a year. No way in hell I’m paying over 100 bucks a ticket for a game.
And I wouldn’t want to pay those prices either. In fact, most of the time I don’t. I usually get a cheap seat to the game, and sometimes, it turns out to be a great seat. How about $50 for a club level? That’s just plain dumb luck, but if Dater is worried about the amount of money he would spend, keep that press pass handy. We all know that hockey is over-priced. It has to do with a lot of factors, but there isn’t anyone who wants to spend $100 dollars (which is a very nice seat at Le Can) for an event that happens 41 times a year. Hockey is way too expensive for the average family, we all know that. Strangely, I have nothing bad to say about what Dater is saying here. But I still think that he should pop down to SoBo 151 for a game. They may not serve PBR, but you get your money’s worth.
- Speaking of SoBo 151, I can’t wait to get there for a game. It looks like that time will be soon, as I get to head back home for a few days at the end of the month. More on that soon…
Hey, I didn’t really talk about the Avs much. I should, since this is supposed to be a blog from an Avs fan. But for now, their record speaks for itself. They are getting enough of everything right now, even if the defense could be a little tighter. But you show me a team where that doesn’t apply. Even the Devils are falling apart these days. The Avs lead their division, but these things are fleeting early on. I just look at points, not position in the standing. You know what they say, king for a day, fool for a lifetime.