Now that's television! There hasn't been anything quite so funny on the CBC in a while than watching Ron MacLean and Don Cherry on Thursday night lecture the hockey world on goalie pads and how they should work properly, even producing a pair on set to illustrate their point. Of course, the fact they were holding the pads upside down might detract from their expertise. Hey kids, don't do it that way at home. . . One other Cherry-related point. I agree Carey Price should have been a finalist for the Calder Trophy as top rookie. But it was kinda pointless for Grapes to start railing on the issue long after the voting had been closed. The writers had to vote on the Calder before the playoffs started, but Cherry is using Price's playoff performance as evidence he should win the trophy. Neither he nor MacLean seem to understand when the voting is done. . . The CBC is taking a lot of shots for its coverage of the Canadiens. But what these playoffs are consistently showing is how Elliotte Friedman consistently rises about the Hockey Night in Canada orthodoxy to produce top-notch hockey reporting.
Hard to see how John Gibbons lasts the season, or how J.P. Ricciardi lasts beyond this year, unless Scott Rolen returns to have a career year at the plate and get this team's offence moving. . . The daily debate, back and forth, on Raps coach Sam Mitchell seems misplaced. He did a terrific job a year ago, the team's development has stalled this year for a variety of reasons, and next year there should be another step forward. This team needs stability at the coaching position, not change. It's intriguing that people seem far more patient with Bryan Colangelo than Mitchell . . Just can't shake the feeling that watching Chris Bosh fire up a mid-range jumper in the dying seconds of Game 2 wasn't the best shot for the Raptors. That said, there's not another Toronto player on the floor that seems to inspire confidence they should make that game-winning shot. . . Watching the Denver Nuggets play basketball is watching an exhibition in all-individual, non-team play. Can't imagine how anybody could cheer for this "team."
What's amazing is how blithely MLSE seems to go about its business while making the Maple Leafs a smaller piece of its pie, day-by-day. On the same day Brian Burke became the impossible dream, The Star's Rick Westhead breaks the news that MLSE is nosing around European soccer. Then comes word that it might be July or August until the Leafs get around to hiring a new hockey boss. They've just got other priorities, folks. . . Love the new Team Canada jerseys, especially the white ones with the red shoulders. Very sharp. . . Wonder how easy it'll get NHL players to play in the world championships after the NHL pulls out of the Olympic movement after 2010 in Vancouver. . . Watching Philly play in these playoffs just brings the same thought to my mind game after game; the Flyers absolutely stole Braydon Coburn from Atlanta, and he may well will a Norris Trophy one day.
More Spygate and the NFL. More wondering, at least from here, why this all possibly matters. . . Nice to see the Cowboys are turning into the new Raiders. First, Tank Johnson, now Pacman Jones. Guess we all know where Michael Vick's comeback will begin. . . Okay, this is the definition of persistence. A British pro tennis player, Robert Dee, has finally won a match after 54 straight defeats . So much for the spoiled baby stereotype in that particular sport. . . I'm sure somebody does, but I just don't care who wins the Lady Byng Trophy. In fact, the Masterton Trophy resonates more. . . Incredible how Mike Gillis supposedly just decided to move to Vancouver to help his daughter pursue her burgeoning field hockey career, and then the Canucks GM job just landed in his lap out of the clear blue sky. Almost too incredible to be true. . . Then there's the Bruce Boudreau story. Apparently, nice guys don't always finish last. This is a beautiful story of a man who waited and waited and never complained. He's the patron saint for all those who say they coulda be somebody if only they'd been given a fair shot.