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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Good or Bad

The Pittsburgh Penguins made it official yesterday. Sidney Crosby will not participate in Sunday's NHL all-star game. The face of the league will not be available to play because of the concussion that he sustained at the Winter Classic. He is hurt thus the NHL can't make him play. However, some have suggested that Gary Bettman give Sid a call saying he needs to be in Raleigh for the festivities surrounding the game. He needs to fraternize with the fellow all-stars, he needs to take part in autograph sessions, he needs to be introduced to the crowd. Why? Its crappy for those going to Raleigh hoping to see Sid play that he won't, but what about people in other places where the Penguins have been since Sid is out. They've had to deal with it and sadly this time so will the NHL. Some have suggested Sid is intentionally staying away from Raleigh so that more discussion on headshots will occur. If that is the case, I'm OK with it too. Headshots need to be eliminated from the game. I don't know if that will ever happen because of the size differential between some, but it has to be reduced severely. To me, whether or not Sidney Crosby shows up and shakes some hands and signs some autographs isn't what determines all-star weekend to be successful. The league is trying to promote its product. I don't necessarily think the all-star game is a way to do that because its not hockey with its no defence style, but some feel its a great way to promote the game. OK! On this matter, I'll give Sid a pass. He doesn't need to be there. He needs to be healthy for a Stanley Cup run. I think everyone will agree on that one.
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The power of Twitter in the mainstream media has really shown up over the Jay Cutler "injury". Ten years ago, we wouldn't have heard the backlash from fellow players about the knee injury the Chicago quarterback sustained that knocked him out of the NFC Championship game. We are now though. Many current and former NFL'ers questioned Cutler's toughness after he was sent to the sidelines. The Bears didn't come out and say Cutler was injured seriously until well after this firestorm had started. It was learned yesterday that Drew Brees played six weeks with a torn MCL which is what supposedly happened to Cutler. I don't know how this will end up, but if the Bears go next season with Cutler as their starting quarterback, I will be surprised. I think the Bears have to cut ties with him after what has gone on. Everything just seems to be a little too fishy here and the team's defence of him is something they have to do. If Cutler does leave, I would expect many current Bears to start piping up as to what might have really gone on.
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The Edmonton Oilers are a better hockey team this year than they were last, but you wouldn't know it by looking at the standings. Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle and Magnus Paajarvi are the beginning of the youth movement that is happening in northern Alberta. All three have shown they are more than capable of playing the NHL game and Hall has established himself as a rookie of the year candidate---one that I don't think Eberle will win now because of his injury. The only team worse than Edmonton right now are the Devils and they have picked their game up of late. Its starting to look as if another lottery pick will be on the horizon. If that is the case, where does Edmonton go. They have good young forwards, they have some youth on the back end in guys like Jeff Petry and Taylor Chorney that they think will be good NHL'ers in the next couple of years. There aren't any goalies out there who are top 5. If I were Steve Tambellini, I would probably look at Swedish defenceman Adam Larsson with the number one pick. Then again, if someone really covets a guy like Gabriel Landeskog who is the consensus number one pick, Tambellini could pull the trigger on a trade and get youth and experience. The next few months will be interesting in Oilerville ---especially if they do win the lottery again.
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I saw Avril Lavigne's new video on MuchMusic yesterday. She isn't a skater boi anymore. She's looking more like a Victoria's Secret model in this video---at least the first 30 seconds. Is she the next teen singer to become trashy or has she already reached that stage. Watch the video and you can decide.
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I've started playing Madden NFL Superstars on Facebook. Why did I do that? Its starting to become addicting. Perhaps this will take me through those upcoming weeks without football. As I build my roster, I am winning games with Rex Grossman as my quarterback. Rex Grossman!!!
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If you are a baseball fan in Regina, you are going to like what you hear coming from Baseball Saskatchewan tomorrow.
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I have no idea who is going to win Sunday's Royal Rumble. I usually have some idea as to now as to who will win, but not this year. Whoever it is, I just hope they take the belt away from "The Miz" at Wrestlemania. I don't if I hate that guy more or his protege Alex Riley. When is Michael Cole going to get tossed around the ring? That needs to happen. Perhaps a Jerry Lawler-Michael Cole match is in the works for WM. Wrestling fans, you are more than invited to weigh in with thoughts as to who will win.
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A friends wife told me she got scared half to death the other night. It got me to wondering what would happen if she gets scared half to death again...you know what two halves equal!
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Later!!

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Mitch...you, Deion Sanders and everyone else piling on Cutler should read this.

http://bit.ly/dIxKJC

Also, have a look at the sportnation polls done yesterday on ESPN. Most people aren't buying into the media's Cutler hatefest.

KC

Anonymous said...

Regarding Sid, my question is this. How serious is this concussion? Can he travel? If he can't, there is no way he should hop on a plane and risk his health. If he can, then why not. He's still not going to play and getting his autograph or a picture will mean a lot to hockey fans.

Kevin

benjskramer said...

Will your bitter hatred for my Bears never cease? ;-) I was the first to pile on the guy this weekend for suffering from a case of the long face when he left the game, but a grade 2 tear of the MCL is easily a game ending injury and would keep the average guy out 3 weeks. Even if Hanie had won that game for them Hanie would have started the SB not Jay with that knee.

Cutler will be back next season as the starter and for many more years to come (for better or worse we'll see). At this point there are no better options out there and they couldn't get a halfways reasonable return on him in a trade either (if there's even a season to trade in in 2011).

You can Cutler hate if you must (as I know you must) but the guy was honestly hurt and his only crime here is being surrounded by really horrendous PR people.

Anonymous said...

As an Oilers fan, I thought there would be some improvement this year, but there hasn't been. I guess growing pains and increased expectations are the reason for that. Its not painful watching them this year so that is good. I think Tambellini should trade the pick and get three or four players, prospects, picks back. If he can find a dance partner, do it.

Shane

Anonymous said...

Ben:

I'm a Bears fan and I KNOW Cutler quit on his teammates. Don't give me horrendous PR people for an excuse. You don't think FOX people and those up in the press box wanted an answer right now. What are the PR people to say when no one knows what's going on. Its only until after the game that a quick conference had to be held to say what had happened. Where were the crutches? You shouldn't be able to move around the way he was when he was walking off the field. Where was the support to Hanie? There was none. I didnt think Cutler was that bad of a quarterback until Sunday. I now see him for his true colours and realize why Denver did what they did.

Keith

Anonymous said...

Regarding your poll, I have voted NO, the NHL all-star game doesn't interest me. The reason it doesn't interest me is because it isn't hockey. Its shinny! No hits, no defence, no interest. Figure skating would be a better option than the NHL all-star game. If this is the way the NHL wants the game to be in the future, I will cash in my chips.

Richard

benjskramer said...

Keith:

Do you ever read, listen to, or watch the Chicago sports media? If you had listened to Chicago sports radio you would have heard the explanation for the lack of crutches from players and trainers - you don't need them for a ligament problem, it would have just been for show. As for supporting Hanie - Hanie went on the record yesterday morning on ESPN 1000 saying Cutler was beside him after every time he came off the field. It was only the national media's spin and hate for Cutler that made him look bad in 4 or 5 three second video clips of him on his own. What you are seeing is the national media portrayal of a man they want to portray as a vilain because they don't like guys whining their way out of cities like he did in Denver.

Every teammate, coach, trainer, and media person in the city is on his side and states it was a legitimate injury and he was fully supportive of Hanie. I'd take the word of the guys who were there over the opinion of Troy "I hate the Bears" Aikman any day of the week.

Anonymous said...

I don't question the injury, I do though question the heart. Many players would and have gutted that out (see Drew Brees, Phillip Rivers). The Bears are taking the high road here, but I'm thinking they have learned a lot. I'd be surprised if Cutler is their QB next year.

Kelly

benjskramer said...

Kelly:

Do you remember how that game Rivers gutted out went for him and the Chargers? They lost that playoff game because he couldn't plant and threw some really bad interceptions. Do we really think the injured Cutler would have played better than Hanie did in the end? Remember Cutler was horrible in that first half. Who knows what the guys heart is really at, but I think it's tough to judge a guys character based on a few short video clips when everyone who was actually there with the organization said he was great and did nothing wrong.

Anonymous said...

Sid, shmid. Play some real hockey this weekend and not some glorified beer league game. I pass on the all-star game and everything that goes with it.


Garry

Anonymous said...

By hook or by crook, Cena will win the Rumble and then beat the Miz at WM because god forbid if John Cena doesn't win the title at WM. GAGGGGG!!!!