In the interests of full disclosure, as well as my usual brand of brutal honesty, I will tell you, dear reader, the following: Prior to this morning at about 9:30 AM Central Time, I was completely and totally stumped as for a topic to rant about. Gary Bettman hasn’t done anything note-worthy and stupid this week (he’s likely on vacation), NBC actually broadcast hockey this past Sunday, and will do so again this Sunday, and CBC made me smile by bizarrely and arbitrarily including clips of the Winnipeg Jets celebrating, during the Hockey Night in Canada commercials advertising the upcoming Stanley Cup Playoffs. Fortunately my own special version of writer’s block ended while doing my daily perusal of the Morning Papers.
Upon coming to the article outlining last night’s riveting contest between the Washington Capitals and the worst franchise in the NHL (WFITNHL), the Atlanta Thrashers, I came upon what passes for comedy in the front office of the aforementioned WFITNHL. Apparently, the Thrashers thought that the thousands upon thousands upon thousands of empty seats that count as “paying customers” in Georgia would find it entertaining to poke fun of Alexander Ovechkin, his broken English, and his propensity to be involved in somewhat cheesy commercials. In typical Ovechkin fashion, he laughed off the lame attempt at humour, and went out and dominated the game pocketing two assists.
Now, if I am the Thrashers organisation, and god willing, sooner rather than later they will be in Winnipeg, I am focusing a little less on making fun of some one’s forays into the world of “acting” and a little more on stocking my team with players who are, you know, NHL calibre. At the present moment, instead of teasing Ovechkin, I am telling my players to emulate Ovechkin. To emulate the successes of the Capitals organisation. To emulate the amount of fans in the stands at Capitals games.
To put it simply, and in as blunt a manner as I can, the Atlanta Thrashers are a joke of epic proportions. Ownership that is currently mired in a never-ending court case. A General Manager who has not proven to be worthy of the title. A fan base that is not existent. A farm team that caters to its own needs, and its own success, never-mind developing players ready to step in and make a significant contribution in Atlanta. From top to bottom, they are the biggest joke in the NHL, as best expressed by Ovechkin’s post game comments last night,
“There was no emotion, no good crowd, and it was hard to play hockey here. It’s a hard situation for Atlanta right now. There’s only two games left in the season and then it’s vacation…”
Last summer, I got into trouble with the great state of North Carolina for demeaning their franchise’s worth in the NHL. I was called out, and vilified by fans of the Hurricanes, and I was pleased to hear from them. Now, I cheer for the Hurricanes, as the small but hearty band who voiced their displeasure with me won me over. Thrashers fans, let me hear from you. Tell me why your franchise is worthy of being in the NHL, and why Atlanta deserves a team. Win me over.
For Illegal Curve, I am Drew Mindell.
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