Saturday, December 27, 2008

What would happen if....

Over the course of holiday season, some sports issues have clearly come to light that demand either a question or a response.

First off, did the Czechs feel like the folks Romans used to torture at the colosseum once the score reached 5-0?

How can the NHL justify watching the Phoenix Coyotes lose $35 million IN OPERATIONS ALONE, and not justify another Canadian Franchise? Unless they want to screw the player's union and keep the escrow money?

Why can't that franchise be in Toronto (perhaps somewhere in northern Toronto?), Kitchener-Waterloo or, perhaps Winnipeg?

How can the Baseball Hall of Fame voters justify excluding Tim Raines from the Hall of Fame, yet consider the 'roid ragers that will come up on the ballot in upcoming years?

Why does the Hockey Hall of Fame seemingly let anyone with 1,000 points and a handshake into its hallowed shrine, when Baseball has standards?

How can those standards exclude Tom Cheek from the media wing of the Baseball Hall of Fame?

Why doesn't Bob Cole call curling games, a sport he once played at a high level, instead of hockey, a sport he can clearly not can't keep up with anymore?

How will Bob Cole cover Vancouver Canucks games once Sundin teams up with the Sedin twins?

(editor's note: Probably like this: "There he goes! Whoa Baby, look at him go. What a pass to the Sunnnnnnedin."

Why hasn't Martin Sheen ever played a baseball manager in a movie?

Why didn't Oren Koules stick to making bad horror flicks and mediocre TV shows? Was he expecting to catch lightning in a bottle and settled for aging free agents instead?

Could the B.C. Lions beat the Detroit Lions straight up?

How did the Boston Bruins grab a 10 point lead on the Montreal Canadiens when the Canadiens were the favourites?

Did Rickards deliberately try to find bartenders that look like Bob Gainey for their new ads?

Was Bob Gainey auditioning for a new job in said ads?

If that doesn't work, are Alexander Keith's commercials next? (Willllllllllllsssssssssooooooooooonnnnnn!)

Nashville isn't the NHL's canary in the economic coal mine. Detroit is.

When Stephen Harper caused a constitutional crisis to stay in power, citing the coaliton was undemocratic, did he realize that shutting down Parliament isn't exactly setting the best example?

It may seem to a purist that a dome stadium in Regina for the Saskatchewan Roughriders is a bad idea. But it's not like the fans there had much of a tradition with home playoff games....

Why the Saskadome is a good idea: no CFL stadium currently requires ear protection for games against Hamilton. Health Canada would have to mandate such a law if a dome is built in Regina. Either that, or fans would train in the off season by standing next to jet engines. And unlike the new stadium plans in Winnipeg (which are spiffy, but...) Regina could use the whole stadium year round for public recreation, which isn't such a bad idea in January.

To Paul Beeston: For the love of god, please stay as Jays' head honcho.

To J.P Riccardi: Pulling the pin on the development plan in Year 6 isn't a ringing endorsement. Probably best to redo the resume and hand them out at Wal-Mart. Who knows. That greeting doesn't look too hard, and you might find a decent reliever for your softball team.

The Canadian Football League will survive the NFL's arrival in Toronto ( in Western Canada), but the idea of the NFL coming to the Big Smoke is just as laughable as the Bills playing games at Epcot. Don't believe me? How many tickets did they REALLY sell at Rogers Centre? Not 54,000.

The Continental Cup is an idea that deserves to die, but should be replaced with another, more plausible idea. Games between teams from across the globe can be good for the sport. Skills competitions can work too. Ryder Cup format? Not so much.

Kevin Martin and Glenn Howard may be the present in curling. Winnipeg's Mike McEwen will be the future, not Brad Gushue.

Who in their right mind would pay $2,500, regular price, to watch a regular season baseball game?

Who wouldn't pay $2,500 to see North Carolina light up Duke at the Dean Dome?

How is it possible there's a professional mini-golf circuit? Is there some kind of skill getting past the windmill?

Happy New Year,

Keith the Curling Guy.


Dennis Prouse said...

I am assuming the Detroit Lions question was asked in jest, because anyone who blogs here would be too smart to really believe that. Let's be clear -- the Detroit Lions would destroy the BC Lions, the Florida Gators, the Philadelphia Soul, etc. This is the NFL, and even the Detroit Lions would roll over a CFL or NCAA team in much the same way Godzilla ran over Tokyo. To pick but just one example, the interior defensive linemen of the Detroit Lions would eat the BC offensive linemen so badly that Amnesty International would be issuing a news release by halftime to denounce the cruelty.

In the spirit of the holidays, I will resist pointing out that an overwhelming majority of Canadians opposed the coalition, and blamed the opposition, rather than Stephen Harper, for the constitutional crisis. I'll also resist pointing out the irony that a group of people who tag Stephen Harper as undemocratic supported a coalition that was hatched by a group of unelected backroom boys in a series of shadowy meetings in downtown Ottawa hotel meeting rooms.

Happy Holidays from your resident crusty right winger!

Keith Borkowsky said...

I love the debate, especially with the Detroit Lions. I say it depends on whether Jarious Jackson or Buck Pierce can run the offence consistently, because aside from the kicking game, Detroit's Lions couldn't beat the Nittany Lions right now.

You probably don't know I was a hard core Progressive Conservative before I dropped party affiliations so I could become a reporter, and spent years before that intensely studying the Canadian parliamentary democratic process. I still consider myself a moderate right-winger.

My problem with Harper has sometimes been with his policies (more than with past leaders). My concerns about him have always been about his approach to politics, and all the Conservatives did during the crisis just proved I was right about them. I know Harper has driven Conservative-minded people away from the party because of that factor alone.

Put Charest or MacKay at the helm, and I don't think the crisis happens in the first place. The Conservatives would have a majority. Sometimes moderation is the key, not the Harris-Harper rhetoric.

kinger said...

Boy do I long for the days when this was a sports blog.

Oh, wait...

Keith Borkowsky said...

As an aside, Josee Legault wrote an interesting piece, I believe for the Toronto Star, which describes other feelings I have about the crisis.

It was in the Toronto Star 2-3 days ago. I say it's worth a read for an alternative viewpoint.

Thanks for reading,


Keith Borkowsky said...

Thanks Kinger,

Ironically, I thought I'd take more flack over the Bob Cole cracks than the coalition reference.

Who knew?


Anonymous said...

NHL, like the economic bubble, needs to die so it can be reborn with viable economics. Losing money in Canada is no better than losing it in the States. There are enough FANS in all these cities to make for decent crowds for a GATE-DRIVEN league. The league will never have the other economic drivers that allow for the "big league" salaries they seem to want to pay (necessitating the "big league" ticket price increases and unrealistic luxury box and tv revenues that make it to the PROFORMAS - but never the year-ends). More teams for Canada?
Maybe a couple, but we're only 35 million, this league will always need to be based on what's viable for a Phoenix, Miami or Tampa Bay.

Dennis Prouse said...

The Nittany Lions would get shredded also, and badly. As good a school as they are, Penn State are one of 119 Div. 1 schools that supplies the NFL with talent. They may may place a small handful of their players in the NFL this year - the rest will never play a down of pro football.

Can you imagine DT Shaun Cody of Detroit going buck wild on a 20 year old Penn State guard? How about up against BC Lions centre Angus Reid, generously listed at six foot?

It's funny - no one would dare suggest that the Windsor Spitfires or the Manitoba Moose could beat the Tampa Bay Lightning, but that is essentially the hockey version of what is being sold in this debate.

Anonymous said...

I think the Spits could seriously give the Sens a pretty good game at this point though.

Keith Borkowsky said...

Here's a question for everyone.

How would you reinvent the NHL economic model so it works as well in Phoenix as it does for other mid-level successful teams? It's not fair to expect Phoenix to be as profitable as Toronto, but how could they or other money-losing franchoses at least break even?

Andrew Bucholtz said...

That's a tough one, Keith. Basically in my mind, the best way to sell tickets is to win on the ice; teams like Dallas have done well in non-traditional markets thanks to a strong initial roster and continued success. In a better economic climate, a few consecutive playoff spots and perhaps a series win or two would probably drastically improve conditions in Phoenix and the like. At the moment, though, I'm not even sure that winning would be enough; like it or not, the NHL is at least the third sports option in cities like Phoenix, and thus, they'll be hurt more by a recession than anyone else.

(Enjoyed the post, by the way).