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 marvel at the embarrassment of US Hockey and Ron MacLean, while I extend the contracts of Deadspin and bountiful courage of Jason Botchford.
JEERS to Ryan Kesler and the Canucks for waiting until this week to have Kesler’s shoulder labrum surgery performed. First of all, Kesler should have had this surgery when he was originally hurt… in February! But then he waits an additional two weeks after the end of their season. Why? It’s not like he and the team didn’t know that he needed this surgery. Being injured since February, they knew MONTHS ago that Kesler was going to need to go under the knife. So why would they wait two more weeks, delaying his start to next season? He should have been on the table within 48 hours of their last loss to the Los Angeles Kings.
CHEERS to Mike Gillis for rightfully earning a contract extension with the Vancouver Canucks. While a few of Gillis’s moves as a GM have come under question, he has also proven that he is willing to make bold moves (good or bad, the Sundin offer was a BOLD move) and can come away with some absolute steals (Ehrhoff, Higgins, Lapierre). He’s also willing to admit when projects aren’t going anywhere and will move on swiftly (see: Marco Sturm, Mathieu Schneider).
Where Gillis should be most lauded, and this tends to be overlooked by many, is his ability to re-sign important players to value contracts. Gillis was able to get the Sedins, Burrows and Kesler for well under market value before they became free agents. The team is in good hands with Gillis, and it’s good to see him sticking around for what promises to be the most important offseason in the history of the franchise.
JEERS to the US National Hockey team for only scoring 3 goals and being pushed to overtime by KAZAKHSTAN this morning at the IIHF World Championships. BY KAZAKHSTAN. As a result, the Kazakhs earned their first point in their tourney. The last time that Kazakhstan earned a point at the IIHF World Championships was in 2006. They hadn’t earned a point in their first four games, which saw them face Switzerland, Belarus, Slovakia and France. That’s right, folks. FRANCE. The French beat the Kazakhs 6-3, but the US were forced to overtime and only put up 3 goals. This is a truly embarrassing moment in US hockey history.
CHEERS to Deadspin for everything they have done related to Patrick Kane’s Awesome Adventures in Madison. In fact, Deadspin even has its own "Patrick Kane" subsection here – www.deadspin.com/patrick-kane. Marvelous. From discovering revealing photos, to recounting details of Kane’s debauchery to launching photoshop contests. Deadspin is dining out on Patrick Kane’s stupidity, and we’re all the richer for it. The photoshop contest alone is worth visiting the site. Is there a photoship of sulking Patrick Kane starring in a classic 80’s video by A-Ha? DAMN RIGHT.
JEERS to Ron MacLean for yet another gloriously cringe-inducing introduction on Hockey Night in Canada. Ronny Mac dared (and failed miserably) to compare the players in the Rangers/Capitals series to the first responders of the 9/11, in terms of the courage that they’ve shown. And yes, he was completely serious.
His next act was not to apologize for this insulting comparison. Instead, he released a statement where he attempted to clarify what he really meant with his off base monologue. What a convoluted, insulting mess. I am all for creativity and spontaneity in live broadcasts, but this was not an off-the-cuff remark. This was a prepared, scripted, choreographed segment, and MacLean was rightly eviscerated as a result. MacLean needs rethink how he writes and delivers these types of diatribes because he’s causing himself and the CBC a WHOLE LOT of trouble.
CHEERS to Jason Botchford for making good on his bet with Scott Rintoul. The morning show hosts made a bet earlier this week regarding a potential suspension to Flyers’ star Claude Giroux. With Giroux receiving a one game suspension, Botchford lost the bet, agreeing to eat a disgusting concoction of a Bounty bar smothered in HP sauce. Rintoul captured this courageous and heroic act on video and posted it here, which shows just how dramatic this bet turned out to be. Botchford is a brave and fearless man, having to endure a truly revolting and sickening mixture of bad chocolate, coconut, and weird brown sauce. This blog tips its hat to Jason Botchford – intrepid reporter and man of integrity and honour. Hero. Legend.