New starts and old cases of fans in the way, among other things
So, I hear it’s opening night?
Ah, hope springs eternal in all those cities and all those arenas and with all those fans.
(Including the six-year-olds who’ve never known the glory of a Leaves playoff triumph).
But the dawn of a new pucks season also brings out one of the silliest things in all of professional sports, quite aside from the scripted fights that really add nothing to a game.
The reward for losing.
Yeah, that whole “we get a point even though we lost the shootout” thing kind of rankles, doesn’t it?
The whole premise of professional sports is that there should be a winner and a loser (soccer being the exception and I have an issue with the plethora of regular-season ties in that sport, too) and rewarding teams with a point in the standings for losing seems a tad ridiculous to me.
I’m a bit of a fan of the shootout, actually, and overtime with one less skater on the ice can be far more entertaining than regulation time but if the object is to win, shouldn’t the winner get all the glory?
Let ‘em have shootouts for all the points; let ‘em know that playing for a tie late in the third period of a game or in overtime isn’t going to bring some miniscule reward.
Let ‘em figure out every game who won and who lost and parcel out the benefits – points in the standings – in an equitable manner
End o’ rant.
So, I hear it’s opening night?
And not to pick on the hockey but the only “real” opening day to me, one that truly marks the opening of a new season with something special, is baseball.
For most fans, it’s the first chance they’ll get to see that season’s team in person, the clubs have been hiding out mostly in Florida or Arizona and they come “home” to start things for real and the fans flock.
The other sports – basketball, football, hockey – have all those home exhibition games that tend to water down the official opening in some way.
I know tonight’s for real, and the pretend games don’t ever have the same intensity or even the same lineups but for the simple fact of seeing a team in person for the first time, baseball Opening Day takes the cake.
Not quite sure how this came up but a friend’s asking the other day about sports fans and how they can, um, get in the way of the actual playing of the game.
That, of course, gets me to thinking about cases of fan interference and the most egregious instances and since it’s kind of timely …
How about that Steve Bartman?
Yeah, the kid who cost Cubs an out in an NLCS game they should have won had they not screwed it up themselves and here’s the cool part.
I was at that game.
Helping out Griff on my way to the Quad Cities for a HOTH exhibition game (remember those?) and I was writing the “scene” out on Waveland Ave. behind Wrigley when the whole thing went down.
Anyway, that’s got to be the one that sticks in everyone’s mind, right?
Others? Here are three and I’m sure you’ve got more.
Remember him? The kid who reached over the wall in right field at old Yankee Stadium in the 1996 ALCS to knock a Derek Jeter fly ball that might have been an out into the stands where it was – incorrectly – ruled a homer?
Yankees eventually beat Baltimore in extra innings; kid got the key to the city and an appearance on Letterman, if memory serves.
Isn’t that one of the great names of all time?
Anyway, no clue how I remembered this but Bibbles was a defensive back with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in the 1957 Grey Cup. He picks off a pass, heads seemingly unimpeded down the field for a touchdown when – oops! – a fan sticks out his foot and trips him.
Here’s photographic evidence, and here’s a very cool story that recounts just who did what and if it doesn’t make you think a little bit less of the judicial system and the men who used to dominate it, I don’t know what will.
Don’t mess with a stuffed animal at a basketball game.
Can’t imagine the fun-loving Chicken getting involved in anything like this, but this is classic.
I understand there might not be enough technological savvy for many, or any, of you to send video questions (I have none) but the old-fashioned mail stuff is still available to you and you’re really slacking this week.
Five things I fully expect you’ll hear before now and whenever the pucks season ends.
“If Toronto wins seven of its next 10, they’ve got a shot at eighth. Go Leafs, Go!”
“Sydney Crosby is almost cleared for full contact practices.”
“He only got suspended how many games for that head shot?”
“The Phoenix Coyotes are in Glendale to stay. Where they gonna go? Winnipeg?”
“Hey, when did Winnipeg get a team?”
Or forfeit any right to complain until the next election, which I believe will be in about six weeks.
You know me and the D League, right?
Hardly kissing cousins but what the heck, a few of you may hold out scant hope of being real men’s professional basketball players and who am I to deny you your dream.
If you got any love for the Bakersfield Jam – this year’s version of the Erie Baycats, Colorado 14ers, what have you – there’s an open tryout this weekend and for the small price of $150, you can take a shot.
Details here and if you make it, let me know what the D League’s really like. Last guy who did got me in some soup with the folks in Ohio when I pointed out it wasn’t, you know, all that good.
RIP Steve Jobs.
This is long but a friend once showed it to me and I know it resonates with many.
Know what kind of visionary that dude was?
Simply realize that I was able to put that and other clips up here because these new-fangled computer things are so easy.
You folks are in for a treat.
At the urging of several Tall Foreheads, yours truly has been invited to take part in the IGBT for tonight’s Leaves opener!
I can’t promise insight, I’ll be doing it from a stool so I can’t even promise mockery of people in the arena or action on the ice but I can promise at least some of the usual fun and frivolity we have.
Be here around 7 p.m., I’m part of a gaggle of guys and gals who’ll be in on it and we need to show ‘em what a real IGBT is like.