Has Bush Jumped the Shark?

by Steve, February 5th, 2007

Andy Borowitz makes the compelling (and amusing) case. Whether you agree or not, you’ve got to admit it takes deft skill to work Bush, Rumsfeld, Robert Gates, Roseanne, Scrappy Doo and Kareem Abdul Jabar into a blog entry.

Rating Bettman

by Steve, February 5th, 2007

Sport’s Illustrated writer Allan Muir grades Gary Bettman today, and it ain’t pretty. Though he doesn’t give him an overall rating, he gives him thumbs up and thumbs down in 14 areas. The thumbs down are dominant.

Bettman is pretty much the George W. Bush of hockey these days. Muir gives Bettman poor marks on expansion, realignment, playoff format, two lockouts, new corporate revenue streams putting the squeeze on average fans, the US TV deal, the lack of a player transfer agreement with Russia, the schedule change that means some teams will only be seen every three seasons in a given market, and the “ownership farces” in Chicago and Long Island.

Not much to disagree with there. In all of these areas, Bettman has been an unmitigated disaster for the league and the game.

But Muir does give him props in four areas. First relocation. He notes that “Quebec City, Hartford and Winnipeg may have had tradition, but they didn’t have the population, corporate support or arenas to compete on a major league level.” Well, if the league didn’t have such a crappy TV deal, and hadn’t made itself so dependent on corporate revenue (two issues Muir decries), Quebec, Hartford and Winnipeg could still be viable markets. Muir contradicts himself here.

Bettman also gets Muir’s approval for allowing Olympic participation. Okay, fine. I think men’s Olympic hockey is a joke, but he’s correct that it’s an important showcase for the game.

Next comes the one that’s going to have the Hockey Fans Unite boys all up in arms. Muir approves of the new rules. Other than his praise for the shootout (which I dislike for the very reason he cites) and the new uniforms, I agree with him. “Add in the virtual elimination of clutch-and-grab hockey (what took so long?), the removal of the red line/two-line pass, the return of delayed offside…and it’s clear that Bettman has overseen a positive evolution in the sports,” writes Muir.

As I’ve hammered on before, talent dilution, relocation, realignment, and scheduling are responsible for watering down the game. The new rules and enforcement standards (though they could use some tweaking) have been a good thing for the game.

Finally, Muir gives Bettman a provisional thumbs up for the salary cap (even though he gave him thumbs down for the lockout that forced it). I’m still pretty conflicted on this issue. If it helps small market teams stay in the game, I’m all for it. But as Muir points out, the cap is edging close to the pre-lockout average.

Fight fans will note that Muir does not mention that there is less fighting in the game today, and they’re always quick to jump on Bettman about that. But this is beyond Bettman. The game is constantly evolving. Today’s players are the most skilled, strongest, fastest, best conditioned players who have ever played the game. Part of the reason there is less fighting is that teams can’t afford to blow roster spots on enforcers and still compete. This is a sad fact for fight fans, and they’ll continue to try to blame Bettman, even after he’s gone.

I think we as fans can all agree Bettman has been very, very bad for the game of hockey. The sooner he is gone, the better.

What brings you here?

by Steve, February 4th, 2007

Here’s a recent sample of search terms that bring people to my humble blog. I should note that for quite some time, MoreHockeyLesswar.org has been in the top 10 Google results for Cholle recipe. I get quite a few hits from India. I hope they like my recipe! A precursor to this blog, WackyMonkey.org , was the number one result for “weird monkey sex” for a really long time.

I’ve got to say, it always amazes me some of the things people will type into a search engine. I mean, Jesus H. Christ, what kind of meat head types “is it true that black people do not play hockey because of weak knees” into Google, and what the hell do they expect the computer to say back?

“I’m sorry Dave. You’re a fucking idiot, so I won’t be able to answer your questions today.” That’s what I’d say if I were their computer.

Anyway, what brings you here? Here’s my personal invitation for you to de-lurk and say hello. For your amusement, here are some searches over the last few days (and yes, people, I know I’m perpetuating this nonsense by reprinting these terms and further seeding the Google index):

  • history of helmet use in u s. professional hockey?
  • everett silvertips tickets wanted ads
  • squatting laws in mexico guadalajara
  • locker fights.com
  • rough boys hockey fights
  • you know ogie oglethorpe
  • is it true that black people do not play hockey because of weak knees
  • guy pulls worm out
  • increasing junior a hockey game attendance
  • www.morehockeylesswar.org
  • pie hockey
  • bong hits jesus song
  • viktor sjodin movie
  • marijuana penalties guadalajara mexico
  • hockey is dying
  • silvertips mascot portland
  • i want to drive a zamboni
  • ogie oglethorpe jersey
  • feminist quotes
  • cat fights.com
  • how to make cholle
  • children hockey accidents
  • i want to drive the zamboni
  • cholle cook
  • more hockey less war
  • silvertips
  • dropping leaflets methods
  • funny hockey expressions
  • the rules the woman is always right
  • bring back emotion in hockey
  • network54 hockey forum
  • easy garbonzo bean recipe
  • more is less
  • cum shot
  • disney on ice half price
  • swift hockey socks

Friday Fiction #1

by Steve, February 2nd, 2007

Hi everybody. There’s a new meme in town, called Friday Fiction. The idea is that every week you write something, then leave a comment or trackback ping at the hub. It’s modeled on the Thursday Thirteen meme, but with a focus on fiction. I’m not a professional writer, nor do I play one on the Internet. It’s just for fun, and just to encourage me and you to keep the creative juices flowing. If you don’t have a blog, but wish to participate, leave a comment to that effect, and I’ll get in touch with you about submitting your work to the hub.

I don’t know how to start a meme, so this may be a slow starter. Have fun!

More on that NBA “Brawl”

by Steve, February 2nd, 2007

Typical NBA punch. In hockey, your own team would beat you up for that.

— Two-time NBA MVP and proud Canadian Steve Nash describes his thoughts on Carmelo Anthony’s punch-and-run in the Knicks-Nuggets melee.

Here’s a funny take by Ivan Carter and Michael Lee.