Friday, April 24, 2009

Minor sport, major stupid

A lot of times, we hockey fans are accused of taking our sport and favorite teams a little too seriously. I usually laugh at those suggestions - ESPN is currently running 22 hours per day of NFL draft coverage (the other two hours are poker). Either Mel Kiper Jr. sleeps with his eyes open and his mouth running, or they've finally crossed the Uncanny Valley and we're watching CGI half the time. (I think I saw "MK-II" stamped across his hair last night, just for a split-second.)

Still, I have to admit that sometimes hockey reporters and writers take things a mite too far, such as Jim Kelley's encouraging advice to Montreal goaltender Carey Price:

It won't ease the sting of losing to the Bruins in four straight. It won't take away the pain of being mocked by his own team's fans after he was beaten for four goals in the first 33 minutes of Montreal's last-chance game. This was a Canadiens team of which much was expected and precious little was delivered. It will, however, provide a ray of hope. A lifeline the likes of which kept the captain of the Maersk Alabama afloat until the sharpshooters arrived.
(Emphasis mine, as if it really needed it.)

Montreal once rioted when the league commissioner appeared in the Forum after suspending Maurice Richard... That was fifty-some years ago, so I doubt that Price has to look over his shoulder when going out to get the mail in the morning. I mean, if Eagles fans haven't burned down half of Philadelphia by now, then the kid is probably safe. But even if he was a little worried, do you think he read this morning and thought, "Whew. Jim Kelley's right. I don't have to request that trade to Phoenix so nobody will ever find me."

To recap: "losing hockey series at age 22" = "held hostage by pirates on the high seas 8,000 miles from home." "Booing" = "threat of imminent death." "Possible future success playing a game on ice" = "dramatic military rescue." And while we're at it, "Jim Kelley" = "juuuuuuuust a little over the top."

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