Trade DEADline day lives up to name
And the winner of the 2010 Trade Deadline Showdown is ... The Score.
That's because The Score chose the perfect time to wave the white flag and pull out of the annual television madness created by the NHL's trade deadline day. It was, in the words of TSN host James Duthie, the worst trade deadline day in six years as a parade of no-names crossed the screen for more than 10 hours on TSN and Rogers Sportsnet.
Sportsnet's Daren Millard had a completely different take on matters, telling viewers near the merciful end that, ``You may have witnessed an NHL record for the most activity at an NHL deadline." In terms of the number of deals, it was indeed busy. In terms of names that anyone would care about, Duthie was more accurate.
With a total of 30 deals, few of them involving names that would ever be in headlines, that works out to about three trades per hour. That makes for a lot of time-killing chat and, in that area, both TSN and Sportsnet excelled. You'd have thought these guys would have pretty well talked out after 17 days of Olympic coverage.
The Score had Steve Kouleas sitting at a desk throughout the afternoon, giving periodic updates and looking like the loneliest guy in town. But at least he didn't have to kill time the way the poor guys on TSN, Sportsnet and Leafs TV had to.
There was no loneliness on TSN and Sportsnet, which employed the usual cast of former goaltenders,goons, unemployed coaches and people apparently picked at random from the NHLPA website. Most of them spent the day analyzing deals involving the likes of Curtis McElhinney, Justin Pogge and Lee Stempniak.
This will all be irrelevant, though, because both networks will record high ratings and record website traffic, which will encourage them to do it again next year. But maybe next time, the TV guys can request danger pay.