Thursday, December 6, 2007

GuerillaTactics: The Sidney Hype Machine

In a deviation from my usual 'plot' I would like to discuss the Oilers. Now, it's known that I am not an Oilers fan. However, I did cheer them on in during their cup run and I have to admit they are impressing me of late with their determination and grit. This will be a tough year for them but look out in the future. But last night, the Pens visited the Oilers. I would like to discuss that.

Firstly, let's discuss the Bettman powered HYPE-O-TRON 3000 that is Sidney Crosby. I can't recall such nonsensical bullshit about one player 'debuting' in western Canada. For the love of all that is proper! TSN had a dedicated 24 hour panel discussing the impact of Sid's visit. Ironically, during the intermission they even admitted they were contributing to the hype just a wee bit. Crosby is talented, I will not take that away from him. However, he is but one man, he's also 20 years old, and let's not forget he's got a halfway decent supporting cast (Talbot, Malkin, Staal, etc). Bettman seems to be hitching the entire NHL on his shoulders which is depressing as hell.

Tangent # 1:
Personally, I do not want the NHL to become like the NFL with it's strange misogynist and church like aura. I think good old Gary is going for exactly that feel. Growing up, HNIC was a family event that included everyone and the dog. I suggest to you that my pup knew the Flames lineup as well as anyone. The stereotype of football is that women fetch the snacks and ask silly questions during the game (granted this may be far from the truth but you cannot deny the stereotypes associated with Sunday Football, Monday Night Football). When we talk hockey, my wife is a better hockey fan than me (casually dominating several pools which I never do), and if we look around at the blogs, the HLOG community proves that ladies like the hockey too. Gary, it's a family thing, not a testosterone fest.

The game itself was BORING as the Oilers completely dominated the Pens during the first two periods. So how did we end up with the Pens winning? Well, I'm no conspiracy theorist but I think someone made a call, perhaps threatened to move the Oiler franchise to Venezuela, in the event the Pens were not allowed to win the game. In the third period the Oil just stopped playing. That's not a characteristic of that team in any sense. I hope they got paid for going down in the 3rd. . .

Tangent #2:
Superstars. I am damn tired of the media fawning over Sid and Ovie. Good lord, these guys have a ways to go before they can legitimately be compared to Gretzky or anyone for that matter. If you look at the bona fide superstars, (Orr, Howe, Gretz, Messy, Sakic, Iggy etc) you notice one thing, LONGEVITY. Gary Roberts is a superstar in opinion, he's been at this hockey thing for 20 years! I only need to point to Lindros. So much potential, one nasty hit and he was never the same. Anyhow, my point is this: show some love to all the young guns, Kane, Toews, Phaneuf, Gagne, Cogs, etc. You have a veritable plethora of potential superstars, not just two. Oh wait, we only fawn over players in the US, the market Bettman is so desperately trying to 'break into'

So, back to Bettman. In a sentence, he's gotta go. I don't think he has the foresight to lead the NHL into the future in a sustainable manner. If he botches the next CBA and there is a lockout/strike the NHL is DONE. That would be a sad sad day. And his voice annoys me. So before Sid collapses under all the pressure of being Bettman's personal messiah can we diversify the NHL portfolio and look to spread the risk around a bit? Bettman is one 'hit from behind' away from losing the NHL. (he must break into night terrors whenever the Pens play the Flyers)

1 comment:

MetroGnome said...

I can't recall such nonsensical bullshit about one player 'debuting' in western Canada.

I also noted the media's navel-gazing during this feeding frenzy in my pre-game. Each time I turned on sports talk the last few days, the topic du jour was:

1.) This is Sidney's first trip to Western Cananda, and
2.) Wow, the media surrounding Sindey's first trip to Western Canada sure is big news.

It's the leviathan staring at itself and marveling at it's own hugeness.