Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Potpourri for 17, 78, 108, 114, 138, 168, and 198, please Alex

The Hockey Hall of Fame announces its 2008 class today. I don't have any particularly strong feelings about it, except maybe that Pavel Bure absolutely belongs there and Mike Vernon does not. Anyway, one guy I've never given much thought to, if only because I'm resigned to the fact that he'll get in eventually, is Glenn Anderson.

I mention this because I just read Pat/BDHS making the most compelling case for Anderson I've seen:
Let me tell you something about those teams and the talent assembled - at the time Glenn Anderson didn't take a backseat to anybody but Gretzky. What I mean is this - you had Gretzky whose genius was acknowledged (remember these are the years when he was scoring 200 points) and then you had the stars - the sneering bullish Messier, the calm sniper Kurri, the smooth Coffey (greatest skater I have ever seen), the cool and athletic Fuhr and the mercurial explosive Anderson. Then you had the supporting cast - the steady Dmen Lowe and Huddy, the chattering Finn Tikkanen and so on.

My point - a simple one. Anderson did not take a back seat to any of the other stars because he was one with them. [...]

Come to think of it, that's... true. Read the whole thing.

Vaguely related sidebar: in January, I went with my father-in-law and my sons to an Oldtimers game here in L.A. It was one of these semi-charity things where former NHL stars (and "stars") play the Police/Fire team -- I think how it works is the NHL vets get the ticket sales (and a chance to sell memorabilia), while the charity benefits by selling 6 or 8 roster spots on the Oldtimers team and running a 50/50.

Only two things worth noting from the experience. One was that a stunning proportion of the NHL vets were guys I booed at one time or another when they were in the league: Glenn Anderson (an Oiler, also filthy with the stick), Gaston Gingras ('86 Hab who beat the Flames in the SCF), Jimmy Mann (thug with the Jets in the early days of the Smythe), and Gary Leeman (who didn't deserve them quite as much as Flames GM Doug Risebrough, but whatever).

The other was that the goalie for the Police team had what I can only assume was both the best and luckiest game of his life, and stoned Anderson dead over and over and over and over again. It was gobsmacking.

**Bill Simmons makes a couple of familiar points in his latest magazine column, but I lot better than I did. This is why he writes about sports for a living and I write about fire alarm systems:
...a great tennis career always unfolds the same way: Guy kills himself for a few years getting to the top and staying there; guy gets bored; guy starts sleeping with actresses/models; guy drops in the rankings; guy makes a brief resurgence; guy loses hair and retires; guy disappears forever. This has to have happened 47 times since I was 10. I'd argue that we haven't attached ourselves to Federer because we know another Federer will eventually come off the assembly line. Because one always does.

**Also under the heading of Things I Don't Have Strong Feelings About, the draft is this weekend and the Flames should be picking up the best prospect they've had since Phaneuf. I'm not too concerned about whether Sutter takes a forward or a defenceman (though a homerun with a forward would be the best case scenario); I just hope he picks up some skill.

Since the #14 and #17 TSN prospects (Zach Boychuk and Luca Sbisa) played for the Lethbridge Hurricanes this season, I thought I'd phone up my buddy Mike who has season tickets, and get a scouting report on the two. His take, roughly:

Boychuk is talented, but small; Sbisa is a nice stay-at-home defenceman with some talent. I'd take Sbisa first, I think he'll go further than Boychuk.

Interesting, I thought. If I'm drafting a small (5'-9") forward in the middle of the first round, I'd like it to be someone who impresses the hell out of the people who watch him all the time. (Something like, "If he gets a fair shot despite his size, he'll make it."). If Boychuk is still available for the Flames at #17, I won't mind if they pass on him, which is not something I would have said half an hour ago.

Metrognome reviews the Sutter era at the draft table here; Lefebvre relays some pre-draft comments from the GM here.

**And finally, today's happy news: Glenn Healy Leaving TV. I thought the Loch Ness Monster was a nice concept, but his ratio of Words Spoken to Insight Provided was way, way too high.


Healy is leaving to work for the NHLPA? One could argue that he's been working for them for the last 8 years.

I either case, good riddance.

Good to see we're back to agreeing, Matt:)

I, too, thought that Healy's Loch Ness award was very underrated. It puts a negative spin on things, but, still, he took something that he could tie in with his sir-name and heritage and found a keen way to highlight a player who'd had zero impact and made nary an appearance.

But, overall, I was damn glad to read that I won't have to listen to him anymore.

First Millions, now Healy....I'm buying a goddamn lottery ticket!!

Three for three...Anderson makes the grade.

(Hilarious captcha of the day: "hobozz")

Simply put, when it comes to Anderson getting the Hall Call, three words:

About fucking time.

I'm betting a serious stink gets raised in Toronto about Gilmour getting bypassed again.

HBomb: Agreed, it's about fucking time. Long past fucking time, actually, but it's a sweet day. Anderson was one of the most exciting players I've ever seen, an absolute killer in the clutch.

Anderson was hosed right from the get-go in that his retirement class ('96) was trumped by the instant induction of Wayne Gretzky and only Wayne Gretzky upon his retirement in '99. Overshadowed by the Great One, and not for the first time. So right off the bat in 2000 he was up against two years worth of first-eligible retirees, and from there he somehow slipped down the list. Finally, Andy's day has come and he has been welcomed to the pantheon of all-time greats.

Thanks Matt.

Final comment - ratio of Words Spoken to Insight Provided - golden.

From the link to that CNN/SI story that Matt provided:

There was talk of [Gary Roberts] retirement, but when he decided to give his career another try, the Flames opted to see what they could get for him.

The answer was a young goalie who has never amounted to much and a veteran center who spent two years in Calgary before moving on to Vancouver as a free agent.


Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?