The Good and the Bad of this past week.
It’s Friday. So we close out the "Week That Was" with our latest volume of… "Cheers and Jeers!"
This week, I hold hands in a bike lane with Dave Pratt and You Can Play, while St. Paddy’s Day NHL gear and the lack of a Shanaban are so bad they should relocated to Glendale.
JEERS to anyone who buys St. Patrick’s Day-themed NHL gear. WRONG WRONG WRONG! St. Patrick’s Day is NOT a holiday here! And Jeers to the NHL for even making this nonsense. Seriously, they made a shirt that says "O’Callahan" for the Rangers captain. As Pass it to Bulis pointed out, Ryan Callahan is already a super-Irish name! You don’t have too, nay you cannot make that name more Irish than it already is! Are they gonna do an O’O’Brien shirt?! If you buy a St Paddy’s Day NHL shirt, you’re a goof, but the NHL is worse for making them in the first place.
CHEERS to Vancouver broadcaster Dave Pratt for returning to the airwaves in short order. News broke last night that Pratt will join CKNW, likely starting Monday, joining the morning team as sports host to start. The speculation is that Pratt will host an afternoon drive-time sports talk show once Neil Macrae leaves CKNW. Macrae has already indicated that he plans to retire once his contract expires. Now, I gave Pratt a TON a grief during his last few months at Team1040, because he diverted so badly from sports on a daily basis that the show became unbearable. Fast forward to today and witness the complete debacle that we now hear with BMac and Taylor. The old-fart nostalgic gigglefest makes for terrible radio but their ratings remains high because they have NO competition. Well, well, well. How many of YOU folks will listen to Dave Pratt over the unbearable and incessant impressions of Paul Morris? Count me in. Knowing what I know now, when Pratt goes on his tangential ramblings on the Mayor and bike lanes and Phoenix and Bettman, I’ll take that HANDS DOWN over two old men giggling about bullshit nonsense for 4 hours.
JEERS to Brendan Shanahan for the unfathomable leniency with Nicklas Kronwall. Kronwall nearly decapitated Jakub Voracek earlier this week with one of his patented dirty shoulder checks near the blue line. It was a clear hit to the head and Voracek remains out. However, Shanahan ruled that it was a hockey play, despite the fact that the principal point of contact was indeed Voracek’s head. GWAH?!?!? No, Brendan. A hit to the head is A HIT TO THE HEAD!
If you want to end the epidemic of concussions and head/neck injuries in the NHL, you HAVE to suspend this hit each and every time! YOU MUST! There cannot be any leeway at all. It is not the speed of the game, or the lack of a red line that is causing concussions. It is stupid, reckless, dirty hits like this one and dirty players like Kronwall that are directly causing concussions. Nicklas Kronwall is not hitting opponents to merely separate them from the puck or keep them from getting the puck. He is hitting to injure. That is plainly obviously every time he turns his back to a player skating up the boards and runs him over, usually while leaving his feet.
CHEERS to the Columbus Blue Jackets for a genius marketing move. They invited any fans who bought a Carter #7 Blue Jackets jersey to have the nameplate changed to Jack Johnson (since Johnson assumed the #7 jersey in the trade with the Kings) FOR FREE! They even agreed to change authentic jerseys for free, even though it would take a couple of weeks to complete the change. That’s some amazing and creative PR and proof that their PR team understands their fans. Between this and their spectacular presence on Twitter, the Blue Jackets marketing team is one of the best in the league. If the Blue Jackets’ players, coaches and management were half has good at their jobs as their PR folks are at theirs, the Blue Jackets would be a sure-fire playoff team.
JEERS to the ridiculous stomach flu I had yesterday. I felt like total ass yesterday. On the plus side, I did lose 7 pounds in one day. And NO I’m not condoning that as a weight-loss technique, so calm your sh*t down. But when this overweight blogger (I know, right?! A pudgy blogger! What are the odds?!) has been trying to lose weight for 6 months, I’ll take any victory I can get. I’m one step closer to my goal of being able to get out of my house without having to cut down one of the walls.
CHEERS to You Can Play. Of course, I already talked about You Can Play in my earlier rant this week in You Know What I Hate?! but they deserve to get an extra Cheers because they are changing the culture of pro sports. A HUGE Cheers to Patrick Burke for launching this project and for hosting an "Ask Me Anything" session on reddit where he was peppered with questions and handled them like a champ. So, Patrick Burke and You Can Play…. Standing "O".