Saturday, January 06, 2007

I want a star!

Before I jump into all this All Star talk, I want to mourn for my team's recent loss like a pet dog. That means I'm not thinking of any bad things with the team. Only good. That and I haven't had time to watch/listen to the games. I actually was going to listen to the game today but - uh, I overslept and woke up to a loss. Maybe I should try waking up early and on time.

Am I being paranoid? Am I just being too superstitious? I know everyone has their thing but I keep blaming losses on random occurences. I don't have time/energy to argue why we lost and need to improve. Oh I can say "if only they weren't sick" or "if only Aebischer wasn't there". But to be honest, I want to crawl up with a block of (dark) chocolate and watch a good funny movie to take my mind off the pain.

With that being said, let us move on.

The All Star game. Isn't it a great idea? I know I want to see Ovie and Mario Lemieux's toyboy (Is the mansion big? Why yes it is!). But at the same time, I'm a terrible fan. I know you're meant to acknowledge skill but frankly, I don't want to see it unless a) they're on my team or b) they come with a funny Eastern European accent. For every guy going "He's gonna be an All-Star!" there's another player who's given the same guarantee whom you love to hate.

So did I vote for Rory? I think. But I've only voted two or three times and it didn't give me a sense of fulfilment or a can of free coke. So I went "screw that" and went and bought myself a coke. But why does it work so well? It's given a fans a chance of changing what could've been. To some fans, it's to expose the weak flaws in the voting system. To some, it's the shame of the NHL for snubbing players who were originally unsung heroes. I know I got myself angry over the fact that Huet never got a shot despite his nice stats because the brass said "They were unsure if he was going to be #1 this season". I mean ouch. Isn't that a very hasty judgement in not letting Huet in? I kept telling myself "it's a weak argument, the fans will never stand". The fans did stand. They just bitched in message boards about it.

So the Vote for Rory has picked up all the unsatisfied fans and given them something to vote about. Other joined in because they either thought it was funny or they thought "Hey - maybe we can actually vote someone in!"

You see, even though the All-Star game is meant to be a "for the fans" voting system, their nominations are ultimately what they want. You're given one slot for the Eastern & Western Conference. What are the chances that other fans may be thinking of voting in.... Garth Murray like you? When the big kids left off Huet, it's because they didn't think he was going to be someone people wanted. They chose kids like Broduer, Fleury or Cam freaking Ward. May I whine that Raycroft's sportsnet ads seemed to make fans vote for him than the venerable Huet?

So thus ends my little moaning over why I hate All-Star, there's too many people left off and there's no easy way to make it work. I support the Rory campaign because it did what other fans couldn't do for their players. I will lament that players with great stats or persona for their team will never turn up in the big game. Because the All-Star game isn't just a skills game but a sportsmanship game. Why the (blip) do I want Sheldon Souray as our Habs representative? He's not even that good of a D defensively! I want to see Koivu! He's the guy whom everyone looks to! I want to see Huet - whose play is one of the biggest factors in our wins.

Actually, if they wanted a fan spectacle, they should've picked players who raised the most eyebrows. They should've brought in the best scorers and pitted them up against the worse agitators. Or they could have games where each period is affected by a random order pulled out of a hat. "It says no goalies on the ice guys" - the goalies would then leave and we can see who scores the most empty netters! In the intermission they can have egg & spoon races for the players on skates. And then maybe an eating contest to top it off. Then for a grand finale, fill the rink with enforcers and see which one actually scores or gets a hissy fit and beats up everyone to steal the prize. Oh and the winner gets a new car and Sidney Crosby for a month. Or Ovie. Whatever.

And (blip) Hartley for taking Carbonneau's shot at All Star assistant coach. Carbonneau is probably another perfect example of All-Star-ness. Great player, great rep (the fans LOVE him. One fan went up to him in a bar and asked "Do some people ask you you look like Guy Carbonneau?" and Guy just smiled and went "sometimes". Only James Bond could pull that off and he'd need a gun) and he's a great choice in looking after a team.

For now I'm going to wait for the day they announce All-Star: Swimsuit Edition.

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