Fehr’s the Problem

Blame Donald Fehr.

Sure, the owners were the ones responsible for the lockout, but the NHLPA’s head honcho seems to be the one prolonging it.

It’s something Fehr has done in baseball for years and now he’s doing it to hockey.  There are no Super Bowl gambling picks as secure as that one.

As the head of the Baseball Players Association, Fehr oversaw strikes or lockouts in 1985, 1989 and cancellation of the World Series in 1995.

Only a blockade of players led by Tom Glavine in 2002, prevented another work stoppage.

And look at what happened in 2010 or what didn’t happen, Fehr was gone and baseball didn’t even come close to a work stoppage.

So now he haunts hockey. It looks like last week there could have been a deal struck, but Fehr wanted to get his hand in on it, even he said they were close.

“We think we’re either done on the dollars or very close to it with the exception of one issue called transition that we haven’t even discussed yet. It seemed to me that we ought to be able to move forward and try and finish it off,” Fehr told news reporters in Toronto. “So far, at least, they haven’t indicated a willingness to continue discussions.”

But when the owners wanted to finish it off without Fehr, that’s when negotiations broke off.

If we want hockey this season, something has to break but it seems like the players may have to get rid of Fehr before a deal can happen.

In the meantime visit http://www.superbowl360.com/ to pass the time until hockey returns.

Thoughts from Section 209: Devils vs Habs, 12/16/2009

Sometimes going to a hockey is a lot like going out on a blind date… the profile sounds good… your friends tell you all sorts of good things about her…. you get excited…. you get there… you open the door and you see some hideous beast with psychological issues… and oh look… she has a drinking problem too!!!! (and no this is not meant to fire shots at any people you think I may have dated in the last … oh… 6 months??)…. but man this game felt that way tonight…. two good teams… high flying… Gomez and Gionta (sorry your Lordship!)… and man this game SUCKED… but they won… the hockey cliche rulebook says… take your two points and move the Farooq on !!!!!!

the Good:
— I was commenting on this to Tammie today… and again I like this… and I know it’s weird and people SHOULD and WILL debate this one…. I like that this team can come out and play like COMPLETE ASS for a period or two, and then just get its groove and a pull a game like this out of its ass…it’s also means this team isn’t going to work itself to death to struggle and grind EVERY game and EVERY shift……as much as we love all that and wanna see it… it wipes you out and it could be why this team runs out of gas in the first round all the time (take this as a fuck you Sutter, you can’t coach in the NHL all you want!)… and maybe this team will have not only some gas in the tank… but an extra gear you NEED to crank it up in the playoffs… ya think???
— the 4th line… it’s been a mess most of the season… hell since the lockout! And they only had like 5-6 minutes tonight… but man they gave energy and the GOAL OF THE GAME… ok it was more THE PRICE WAS WRONG BITCH and he sat on it to kick it in… but still… they played well and who know Pikkachu would out-score Gomez right??? They worked hard and smart and got just reward and just to piss off good ol’Rob…ROD PELLEY GETS PIST… ROD PELLEY GETS ASSIST!! (it rhymes boy!)…. and if we can only get ONE GOAL TONIGHT….. Josh Burnett: PIKKACHU, I CHOOSE YOU! (good pic!)
— Elias and Rolston… they looked a little bit off and shaky early on, but you’re really starting to see the chemistry grow and get better and that game winning goal was just a thing of BEAUTY, TIMING and working together!

the Bad:
— Brett Russo… I say this every time… but holy shit do they need to wheel her out there to sing the national anthems??? Really?? it’s like she’s a bad plug to remind you that the goodness of the American Idol’s casting shows and that they ARE coming soon… but my God… she makes cats jump off buildings…. glass and steel shatter and when she hits a high note pro wrestlers go crazy and kill their families… really… MAKE IT STOP!!!! (in closing: Brett Russo is truly the Steve Cangelosi of national anthem singers….my god she botches like Jeff Hardy!!!!!)
— I love offense…. and damn I love creativity… but hot damn guys… really enough with the spin-a-roonie backhand no-look passes to each other… you guys missed like FIFTY of them tonight… and this team goes with its passing…. gotta connect there…
— the Power Play… another wasted 5 on 3…. short handed goal allowed,,,,,and 0 for 5… all just NOT GOOD
— Bryce Salvador… he fell alot tonight… and funny how when the guys behind us started yelling REMEMBER LYLE ODELEIN, and the current #24 starts playing like that Rotted Old Sea Slug with the horse-face… please no more Odelein revivals!!!!
— Jamie Langenbrunner… that shortie was ALL on him today, and again he just didn’t seem “with it” today….

The Funny:
— Poor Clutch…. he took a beating again tonight… my favorite one… Pete joking yells… HEY CLUTCH YOU SUCK… and some random girl in the Clarkson jersey jumps up and does the I HOPE YOU DIE!!!! Right in his general direction!! I chuckled hard at that!
— Hell the whole section was random… different strokes reference… and then a whole bunch of guys singing the old “What’s happening!!” theme (and man… not to go off the board here…but was there ever a compilation of fatter people on one show like that one??)…. it was just a bizarre night of random!! Good thing Rob and Anna moved over so we could focus on being just game-funny!!!
Hell it was so weird tonight me and her Lordship of Krang didn’t have our nightly spat where she chews me down and damns me as a Devils fan :p
— Andy Greene ices the puck… we’re all like.. ANDY!!! And then play stops, and the chicken dance song hits… see Andy is so ahead of his time he KNEW the song was coming and wanted to get pumped up by some RANGERS SUCK chants!!! Such a wise man that Andy <3
— Rob again commenting on our power play: "Asking Andy to do his and langenbrunners job. Is like asking Mackie to do Laflammes job as well as his own at once" (for those who don't know… Laflamme's gimmick is he's kinda employment "challenged")
my comment back: "Untrue I can sit at home all day and play video games AND work too!!" (though I get paid for it because I usually am virus scanning a PC while I do it!)

Hell I worked HARD to get that much into this… I'm kinda done right now, more to come Friday Night… oh … it's Ottawa… time to dig up filler material AGAIN :p

I Just Couldn’t Resist. Again.

Ya know, it really is funny. It seems like the newest fad in the hockey blogosphere is to grab a keyboard and wax poetic about how the Devils just destroy the game, disappoint hockey naturalists, sport lousy attendance, and simply aren’t getting it done anymore. But as we learned last time, it’s probably a good idea to make sure you have at least…I don’t know… watched a live hockey game before you plunge right in and scrap together a literary abortion. After all, it really isn’t fair to ask someone to resist temptation twice.

Let’s take a little trip over to Arthur Staple’s latest, shall we? Go ahead… I’ll give you a few.

Ok. Changed your underpants? Good, let’s go.

As a Devils’ fan, I’m obviously used to reading such poorly-written, devoid-of-substance attacks against one of the NHL’s most successful teams. However, I must admit that this is the first time I have read a piece focusing on playoff success in November. Really, Arthur? You’re going to sit at your little cubicle and write an article about the NHL Playoffs… in November?!

Brilliant. Well, your first self-contradiction comes with a statement that Lou Lamoriello “has it wrong” and that he’s “had it wrong since the lockout… even though the Devils have won three Atlantic Division titles in those four seasons.” (Could this be a test market for Microsoft’s new “does-this-make-sense?” feature?!) But wait, it gets better: Mr. Staple even makes his very own “trap” comment.

Arthur, seriously — you wouldn’t know the ol’ 1-2-2 if it kicked in your bathroom door and video-taped you reading Parade Magazine while you were waiting for the generous amount of Rogaine you graciously applied to your testicles to dry. I know this because had you recognized any trace of the “trap”, you would have easily detected it when the Rangers, Islanders, Penguins, Flyers, Capitals, Bruins, and Panthers executed it all year long. But no, no criticism of the sexy NHL clubs.

Oh look, kids — Brodeur comments, too?! How original, Arthur. Oh! You realized he got hurt last year, very good!

But Lou didn’t have a backup plan?

Really? I thought Scott Clemmensen came in and won a few games (or twenty-something) for the team and led them to an Atlantic Division championship? But ya know, Lou had no idea what he was doing. After all, Clemmensen was just signed to be a towel boy that happened to be an NHL-caliber goaltender. Who knew.

But when it’s down to the playoffs, the Devils only have Parise, Zajac, and Martin. No other Devils capable of taking a game on their shoulders, you say? My records show Langenbrunner, Pandolfo, Greene, and Clarkson — in addition to Parise and Zajac — all with registered playoff game-winners since 2006. Not to mention many from ex-Devils Gomez, Madden, and Gionta.

Sure, roster moves and player exits have caused holes to be “plugged” in New Jersey and Brian Rolston and Dainius Zubrus have filled those roles. Why? Because they want to be here. It isn’t about the money or the Broadway lights. It’s about playing a system that year after year proves itself to be one of the best in the league. Sure, the Devils have fallen on dark times in recent playoff years. But as I recall, the same string of disappointments befell the team in the late 90’s. After all was said and done, and numerous carbon-copied recycled bullcrap from “writers” like yourself — the Devils would go on to advance to the Stanley Cup finals in three of the next four seasons, winning the Stanley Cup twice.

Arthur, you can’t look me in the eye and tell me that Lou Lamoriello has no idea what he is doing. While the goal and the philosophy may stay the same year in and year out, master plans aren’t instantaneous in professional sports. Could these Devils be a part of a bigger puzzle? Who knows? I don’t have ESP, and neither do you.

Which is why you shouldn’t be writing this type of crap in November.