October 2010

Hockey

Pat Burns isn’t dead: Dispatch from the Twitter desk

I was still in journalism school the day a plane crashed in the Hudson River in early 2009. There was a class on New Media – I think the professor called it Journalism 2.0 – where my class taught about the internet and how it was revolutionizing journalism right in front of our eyes. We sat in a room with a large overhead projector and watched the changes: ‘Weblogs’ hosted by WordPress and occasionally Blogger;…

Hockey

John Tavares, where’s my cake?

Have siblings? Not me, not yet at least. So I’ll have to stick to living my life vicariously through New York Islanders center and long lost chum John Tavares. The reason I bring it up is because we’ve been going through a lot of changes lately, John and I. We sort of grew up together. Yeah, sure, he’s a genetically-gifted power-play goal scoring hockeybot and I’m a wannabe magazine trapped in a website’s body, but…

Baseball

Nicole Polizzi, NL Manager of the Year?

The Pittsburgh Pirates are looking for a new manager and even though many are available – Ken Macha, Jeff Banister, Dale Sveum to name a few – none scream of the ideal fit like someone else I know. Despite the club having considered John Gibbons, Carlos Tosca and Eric Wedge already, the only single person who can help the Pirates escape from the National League’s Central Division basement this year is Nicole Polizzi. You probably…

Baseball

Texas Rangers: More than just Yankee slayers

With the Texas Rangers now in the World Series – for the first time ever, no less – you might be asking yourself “who are these guys?” or “why should I cheer for them?” Well, I’m here to help you out with a quick guide to the Rangers and to show you why you should, in fact, cheer for them. First off ask yourself if you’re a baseball fan. Are you? Have you heard of…

Basketball

Keith Van Horn’s ghost is here, wants socks

Keith Van Horn’s pale, gaunt face haunts me while I sleep. Not in a Paranormal Activity 2 way, but a Charles Dickens-meets-W.P. Kinsella sort of way. Monthly at first, then weekly. Now almost every damn night. So imagine, if you will, falling asleep with the seven-foot silhouette of a man watching you through your doorway, his surprisingly muscular knees at eye level while you peek between the cracks of your blanket and pillow. If you’re…

Basketball

Carmelo Anthony has never seen an after school special

The NBA is changing fast. Uncomfortably fast. And I’m starting to feel like a crotchety old man who needs his professional sports left untouched. Is it too late to bring Mitch Richmond and Rik Smits back? When the Boston Celtics won the 2008 championship with a convoy of ringers, it opened up a can of worms later exploited by three of this generation’s most significant stars. With the addition of LeBron James and Chris Bosh,…

Hockey

Kirk Maltby’s grind to the Hockey Hall of Fame

Very few NHL players can call themselves a Stanley Cup champion. Even less can call themselves a four-time champion. Not many can say they played 16 years in the NHL either, 14 with one team. And only 250 can say they’ve played 1,000 games in the show. But what exactly qualifies someone for the Hockey Hall of Fame? Only 244 players, after all, have. Does Kirk Maltby make the cut? The Hall’s mandate is to…

Hockey

Your John Vanbiesbrouck lunch pail only makes it worse

In professional sports, and specifically hockey, you have significant franchises and then you have everybody else. For each Original Six team in a city that understands how ice works, you have a handful of irrelevant franchises battling for the attention of viewers with archived footage of Slamball and tape-delayed episodes of Regis and Kelly. We call these franchises the Nashville Predators and Atlanta Thrashers but they are just as easily the Dallas Stars and Phoenix…

Basketball

The Blessing and Curse of the Minnesota Moon

If you make a song about wolves, I’m going to listen. If you design a t-shirt with the silhouette of a wolf pack howling in the moonlight, I’m going to buy it. And I’ll wear it too; I don’t even care if it’s uncomfortable. So naturally I’ve found myself drawn to a certain basketball franchise in Minnesota. I remember the days when Kevin Garnett wasn’t so obnoxious, I remember the days when Stephon Marbury wasn’t…