Canucks and Beyond

In the News: Why Off Season Hockey Can Be Fun

06/29/2007 at 4:57pm EDT

#2 The Buffalo Sabres are Exploding on Purpose. Wtf?

So, what do you do when you have some of the top players in the game, some of the best fans filling your building every night, the top selling jersey and merchandising sales in the league, and a top-flight team that’s gone from bankruptcy to making the Eastern Conference Finals two years in a row?

Well, you destroy it, that’s what you do.

Not signing guys during the season (ie. Briere and Drury) was idiotic. C’mon… at least one of those deals should have been done, for godsakes. And now you have a scenario where Briere is giving a big f*** you! to $25 million being offered (and sorry, but I don’t blame him; I’d have been fed up with everything at this point myself) and another player, Drury, being wooed by The Dark Side (ie. Colorado, if you’re new around here). Wherever they end up, their prices have certainly gone up.

I see they’ve started purging the team offices, as well. Do they have good reasons? Who the hell knows. And while I find perverse amusement in the madness, I imagine Buffalo fans aren’t so pleased.

#3 Bras Will Continue to Reign Down on GM Place

The possibility that Jeff Cowan wouldn’t get re-signed by the Canucks was spooky to contemplate. There is probably nothing more likely to get the National Hockey League featured on ESPN or The Best Damn Sports Show Period, than women taking off their undergarments in an arena. So it wasn’t a surprise that this deal was done, giving the Brabarian a nice little raise - 2 years for a total of about $1.4 million - as well.

Frankly, if Vancouver wasn’t going to cough up the cash, the NHL itself probably should’ve kicked in a few bucks.

And bonus: turned out the boy can score some nifty goals. Everyone wins!

#4 Alexei Yashin to the Rescue

This story certainly requires no embellishment (not that I would ever do such a thing, mind you). However, this quote from the talented Russian sort of says it all: “I want to help a team be better and win a Stanley Cup.”

Entertaining when you consider Yashin just got bought out to the tune of almost $18 million so the Islanders could have the privilege of stopping Alexei from “helping” them win a Stanley Cup.

#5 From Basille to Biaggio, Someone’s Gettin’ Sued One Day

There are so many levels by which to be amused at this story, but I suppose ultimately, it’s a comic-tragedy.

First, you’ve got this godforsaken hockey team in the lost wilds of Tennessee that has somehow - against all odds - been developed into a kick-ass club. Yet has now come completely apart.

Second, you have an owner ready to say goodbye to his toy, and rake in a healthy profit for it, staring some $220 million in the face.

Third, you have a notable Canadian businessman ready to scoop that team up and drop it in Hamilton of all places, potentially scaring the crap out of one of the most powerful clubs in the NHL: Leaf Land.

Fourth, you have a Commish who’s painfully obvious in his desire to not lose an American-based club. (So can we be blamed for manufacturing conspiracy theories when suddenly $220 million doesn’t look good enough??! No, we cannot. Others feel differently, however.)

Fifth, you have a Bag Man - errr, Del Biaggio - ready to ride in and save the day, and spirit the club from the wilds of TN to Hockeytown KC.


The thing about this story is that you don’t have to make shit up - it’s entertaining without any effort at all.

Till the lawsuits start, anyway. Knowing they’re coming is so predictable, you could set the calendar by it. One year from today, I’ll just betcha SOMEONE is sitting in a court room with their hands over a bible swearing to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth…

And amen to that. I shall continue to be amused.

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