Thursday, October 02, 2008

Sean Avery, becoming a personal hero

Sean Avery slagging Don Cherry on The Hour is a headline-grabber, no doubt. Please don't ignore that he actually stuck some pins in another Canadian sacred cow — major junior hockey.
"Avery, who is from Pickering, Ont., and played in the Ontario Hockey League, said a junior hockey player's focus on the game to the exclusion of everything else is 'terrible.'

“ 'I didn't go to school,' he said. 'I dropped out at Grade 9. I didn't learn to play the piano. I didn't read Moby Dick. I didn't read anything.' ”
It is welcome to hear someone who is an active player actually articulate the reality of hockey's economic system (loose definition). It has made the players richer, but haven't necessary enriched them.

Good on Avery for saying something interesting. And, yes, he dissed Don Cherry.
"Avery said he used to defend Cherry to European teammates.

“ 'The European guys hated him, but I always stuck up for him,' he said. 'I said, ‘it's Grapes'. You've got to love him. But he would bash the European guys.

"And there are a lot of great European players. They may not be the toughest guys in the world, but they still bring an exciting part to the game.

“ 'I'm just over with him.' ”
(Link via James Mirtle.)

Avery sour on Grapes (William Houston,


Anonymous said...

Did Sean Avery play his junior hockey back in the 1960's?
There was a time, not too many years ago, when junior players were actually discouraged from attending school by unscrupulous owners and coaches in order to concentrate on the game.
But that doesn't sound like today's OHL, especially with people like Dave Branch running the show.
Nowadays, the opposite is true.
Teams encourage players to stay in school and some actually help them with the post secondary education.
Part of the reason why things are different is out of response to US college's recruiting prime junior prospects.
But I like to think junior operators in general are a little more sophisticated and enlightened than they were back in the 70's and 60's.
If Sean Avery dropped out of HS in grade 9 in this day and age then I might humbly suggest it was his own damn fault.

sager said...

It's a far cry from what it was like back in the '60s and '70s, but let's not kid ourselves ... OHL teams are not encouraging players to write a superb critical analysis of Fifth Business when they're on a six-hour busride back from a game in the Soo.

eyebleaf said...

Man, I would have loved to see Avery in a Leafs uniform.

Anonymous said...

In the OHL's defense, I believe they think that the hagiographical studies in Dunstan Ramsay's life are best left non-deconstructed.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I would have loved to see Avery in a Leaf's uniform....two class acts that deserve each other.