Wednesday, October 4, 2006


I can't read any more hockey articles about how Tie Domi is the "last of a dying breed" (good riddance, jerkass, I hope you had the time of your life), how the Devils somehow got under the cap and signed Gionta, how a group of players want union boss ousted, and how the Penguins will start season with crop of teens (entirely unrelated to certain Republicans who like teenage boys). Enough already!


For the record, I like the fact that the NHL is now officially under the radar, and isn't getting the press or respect it once was by the mainstream sports media. Who cares? So I shouldn't enjoy it because it's not getting the notority it once was? Because it's not raking in the ad cash? Because big celebs aren't showing up at the games? If I wanted all that crap (and I don't), I'd watch the unwatchable NBA. Yes, it's a niche sport, and it always has been. Back in the 90s, they tried to market hockey as a bigger sport than it was, ratcheted up the payrolls accordingly, and ignored the superfans to try to expand its fan base . . . and it almost killed the sport entirely. Now they seem to be back on level ground, and they're better off for it. And with sensible rule changes and tightly officiated play, it's almost as fun to watch as it was in the 80s. If you want fighting, go watch NASCAR drivers jumping through each others windshields, or rogue bands of NBA players attack their fans. I'm perfectly content to watch a sport featuring goalscorers with finesse, clean checking, and great goaltending. Call me crazy, but I enjoy watching a sport without all the hype.

Now that we've got that business out of the way, it's time for the 2006-07 NHL season! On October 4th, you can GIVE HER THE PINK SLUG as the newly uniformed blue and yellow Sabres kick off the season on OLN Versus, uhm, versus the Hurricanes. Once I find what channel that is, I will be there! (Actually, someone called the new Buffalo logo a "banana on steroids", which is an even BETTER gift to give your significant other.)

Preseason rankings are fun, aren't they? Especially when you have the Rangers ahead of the Devils, even though the latter won the division. Anyway, I like to see both teams in the top 10, along with the Sabres, the Mighty-free Ducks, and the Senators who never EVER live up to the hype. It should be a fun year.

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