Tag Archives: Sean Avery

Kaberle, Modano, Hull, Avery, Rentals, Caps & Raps… Oh My

I love this quote from Bruce Arthur. Can’t you just picture the scene in the Leafs locker-room, all the regular’s are gathered around Kaberle’s locker, they ask him about his NTC:

“”We haven’t spoke about anything, and obviously my status stays the same,” Kaberle said with an air of finality. “We can talk about tonight’s game if you guys want to.”

After a pause, one sharp reporter said, “Not really.”

That is right out of a SNL skit… whom do you think the “sharp reporter” 10:1 Howie 5:1 Jonas

Oh to be on the Dallas Stars next flight with Modano and Brett Hull… Let’s see, sitting in 11 a is Mike Modano, here is your boarding pass and in 11 C is Brett Hull, here you go…

“”I think we would have analyzed (the signing) a little bit more over the summer before you go into the free-agent market. Do a little more homework and detailed analysis (and get the opinions) of players who have played with him, or how guys feel about it,” said Wednesday the 19-year veteran.
“It could have been avoided, I think, but I think (co-GM) Brett (Hull) felt having him as a teammate (while with the Detroit Red Wings), he saw something in him. “Talent-wise, he’s a very skilled kid. But I think character-wise and his personality didn’t blend with the criteria that we’ve always had as Dallas Stars. Since Bob Gainey was here, we implemented a kind of personality and character-figure in Tom Hicks. That’s kind of where it went off and tail-spinned, and got corrected.”

One word…. Ouch…Gotta love when a guy like Modano suggests that maybe, just maybe it would be a good idea to do some , ummmm, what’s the word for it, oh yeah HOMEWORK before signing a player…. The fact that he references Bob Gainey is even more classic.

Good job of accumulating a list of rental players from Kevin Allen in his USA Today hockey blog:
Jay Bouwmeester (Florida)
Keith Tkachuk (St. Louis Blues)
Mathieu Schneider (Atlanta)
Andy McDonald (St. Louis)
Nik Antropov (Toronto)
Doug Weight (New York Islanders)
Bill Guerin (New York Islanders)
Gaborik (Minnesota)
Maxim Afinogenov (Buffalo)
Sean O’Donnell (Los Angeles)

Another great quote: “Citing declining sales, the CBC has pulled out as a carrier of Toronto Blue Jays telecasts.” William Houston, Globe and Mail. There is no surprise that the CBC balked at a rate of $150k per game to broadcast the Jays games. “Beeston said 145 of the Jays’ 162 games will be televised, 125 on Sportsnet, which is owned by Jays proprietor Rogers Communications, and 20 on TSN.” By the way, did anyone else here this gem from Mr. Beeston while on with Pad Thai (Watters) and Brady ” I am almost finished writing up the job description for Blue Jays President.” Please, someone tell me just how long that should take and what Mr. Beeston (whom I am a huge fan of) has been doing since he took the job???? I guess with the rate of signings and trades he realizes there is no rush to do…..ummmmmm, anything

A subject that drives Howard Berger nuts seems to have been resolved in the media’s favor in Montreal:

“Growing weary of widespread rumours and gossip surrounding injured players, Canadiens coach Guy Carbonneau on Wednesday said anyone sidelined indefinitely will now have the nature of their injuries released to the media. No longer will the team report such players have upper- or lower-body injuries.Carbonneau said the decision was reached following a meeting between himself, general manager Bob Gainey, vice-president (hockey operations) Julien BriseBois and the team’s communications department.”

I have heard the arguments from both sides. The anti-reveal argument is if you reveal a player’s injury the opposing teams will attack that injury every chance they can. The pro-reveal argument is simply, we have a job to do and you shouldn’t hide information from us. If the former is true then the injuries shouldn’t be revealed, the hell with the latter.

Tonight’s shows on both stations were the worst I have heard since I have been pre-viewing/reviewing the drive home radio shows on both the Fan and 640, The interview with Steve Nash was pretty dull and almost unlistenable seeing how Nash sounded like he was in an aquarium for it. Kudos to Mccown and Kelley for interviewing an athlete (they rarely do) and for admitting that they taped it earlier (not that it would have made a difference to any of us listening), which they also rarely do. Those who preceded Nash and followed were equally as uninteresting. Over on 640 the lineup with the exception of Dean Lombardi was really dull. Perhaps it was the cold weather, but it seemed to be a night when both stations should have punted. Here’s hoping tomorrow is better.

You know the old saying about a sucker being born every second…
“Sources say the team is expected to be sold within the next two months with current owner Jerry Moyes retaining as much as 20 percent.” That according to Darren Dreger, speaking on the issue of the Phoenix Coyotes. With all the issues facing this team, most importantly a 30 year lease with brutal terms (no parking revenue for the team AND a share of each ticket sold being shared with the city) it’s hard to phathom who would buy the team. That is not to suggest that the team isn’t valuable. Truth is many would leaf fans would gladly change rosters wth the Yotes in a heartbeat… Why someone would buy this team is beyond me…especially right now…

Hats off to Jay Triano for finding Andrea Bargnani’s game. Man, anyone else see him put up 31 tonight in another loosing effort?? Quite an impressive showing for the Big Euro.

If you are a hockey fan, you had to watch, with a smile on your face the play as the Caps defeated the Pens 6-3 tonight. Way to go AO and my adopted 2nd team the Washington Capitals!

Have a good night all

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The Best Article You Will Read Today

Friends, if you only read one thing today, read Michael Farber on Sean Avery. This is the type of work we hunger for and should demand more of. For every time we hear “there must be more to the story” there should be an article like this. Brilliant work Michael!

Here is the gist and some highlights:

Avery is a team killer. A train wreck. In complete opposition to what his dad, the NHLPA and other supporters have tried to say before, he is not just a good boy… Farber, at the end of the 3 page must read comes to the realization that someone will one day take a flier on Avery….

” Avery was guilty of hockey’s deadliest sin: being a lousy teammate. There can be room for personal agendas in other sports—think Terrell Owens with the Cowboys—but hockey takes a dim view of square pegs in their perfectly rounded holes. The ethos is different. Unlike baseball clubhouses, where players sit facing their stalls, or football locker rooms, where players are segregated by position, a hockey dressing room is designed so all players face toward the center, gazing at one another. Avery did not look at his teammates in Dallas. Between periods he would often sit by himself in the hallway, headphones on, a citizen of Planet Sean. When Avery was in the dressing room, according to Stars veteran Mike Modano, he was often on his phone, discussing a potential book deal or his movie project, a romantic comedy based on the life of the only NHL player to spend his summer as an intern at Vogue.”

One word….WOW

“Avery wore shorts with his sport coats to preseason games because, Modano said, “he didn’t feel he could express himself if he dressed the same as everybody [else]…. He just seemed unwilling to do what we were all asked to do, on and off the ice. He wanted to march to his own beat.” Avery was the iconoclast clown, throwing spitballs at hockey’s ways.”

To quote LT, “OMG” (oh my god)

“After he signed, I told him that now that he’d gotten the big contract, he could take it down a notch and just go out and play hockey,” said Red Wings forward Kris Draper, Avery’s friend and former teammate. “Unfortunately that’s not what happened.”

We all know it hurts the most when friends go on the record with stuff like this….

“POLL YOUR average American, suggests an NHL veteran, and Avery will draw higher name recognition than any active player aside from Sidney Crosby. Avery, who declined to be interviewed for this story, retains the services of a Hollywood public relations firm, the only active NHL player known to have a nonsports publicist. For him this is a reasonable investment. According to a former teammate, Avery was at a house party in New York City last summer when an actress from a popular television show started chatting him up. She said she didn’t know much about hockey, but she was mightily impressed that the NHL had made a rule just for him.”

It’s true but soooo sad. The guy is better known the Alexander Ovechkin.

“Dave Siciliano, his coach in Owen Sound, had his own Avery Rule, which he refers to as the 80/20: Siciliano devoted 80% of his time to Avery, while the other 20% went to the rest of the team. “You seemed to be dealing with something every day,” says Siciliano. “He had an overzealousness and a lack of discipline that would cause rifts on the ice, at practice, on bus trips.” On one trip Curtis Sanford, now a Canucks goalie, heard a scuffle at the back of the bus and wheeled in time to see captain Dan Snyder, upset by an Avery comment, being pulled off his mouthy teammate. Siciliano wanted to dump Avery, but Owen Sound G.M. Ray McKelvie recalls, “A lot of people had already gotten the idea that he wasn’t a team player. It was hard to make a deal that made sense for us, until one night in Kingston he had three [goals] and three [assists]. A couple of days later [Kingston G.M. Larry Mavety] and I had a deal. Sean could get people riled up, but he was an excellent player.”

Sounds just like the guy you want on your team….Me thinks LT was right on this one….

“after being traded in March 2003 to the Kings, a team less secure in its identity, Avery ran amok, by hockey’s standards. Even with a serendipitous do-over—he was kicked off the team with three games left in 2005–06 for refusing to participate in a drill and arguing with assistant coach Mark Hardy at practice but was allowed back after ownership replaced G.M. Dave Taylor with Lombardi that summer—he continued to roil teammates as much as opponents. He cruelly ridiculed the speech of left wing Dustin Brown, who has a slight lisp. “He was really hard on Brown, a quiet guy who just shut down,” says Conroy, now with Calgary. “He didn’t come out of his shell until Sean was gone.”

He’s just a nice guy eh Glen???? Did the PA offer to step in and assist Brown with this issue????

“There were dressing-room fisticuffs. Thornton and Avery had a “play fight” in Edmonton in late December 2006—it started when Avery hit Thornton with an exercise ball—and Thornton wound up breaking his wrist and missing 23 games. Lombardi, who after succeeding Taylor had announced that Avery was on “double secret probation,” traded him to New York five weeks after the Thornton incident, but not before warning Rangers president Glen Sather that “you’ll have him in your office once a week.”

Double Secret Probation??? That can only mean one thing TOGA PARTY!

“”Brett Hull criticized us when we traded Sean, saying our team was bad for Sean and bad for the game,” Lombardi recalls. “Freedom of expression. How does [Hull, the Stars’ co-G.M. with Jackson,] like it today? They spent $15.5 million to protect the right of free speech. Adams and Jefferson would be proud.”

OUCH!!!! Seriously, can this be made into a tv show or a movie????

“I think the persona Sean took on”—the Vogue-interning, starlet-dating, crossover celebrity who feigned indifference to the game—”became more powerful than the real Sean,” Hull says. “You know the Green Goblin in the Spider-Man movie? Like that. It just overtook him. He decided to be Evil Sean.”

Ya think???????????

“We spend time psychoanalyzing Sean,” Lombardi muses. “Maybe we should be doing it to ourselves.”

Does anyone else get the impression that maybe, just maybe Lombardi is a tad bitter towards mister Avery or feeling a lot bit vilified?

Then, Farber ends with the conclusion that I and many others have drawn….

“Sometime, somewhere, there will be a comeback. Avery will do the requisite scraping and bowing because, as Calgary’s Michael Cammalleri, Avery’s friend and former Kings teammate, says, “Without hockey Sean would just be some guy doing some crazy stuff.” An e-mail message to SI from Nicole Chabot, Avery’s publicist, late last month read, in part, “We at this point are just trying to weather the storm as best we can. The comeback story will be amazing, but we are a ways away with all the details still to be sorted out.” Oprah, schedule some couch time.”

Pass this article along folks, when you read a Toronto daily today, remember it. This is sports journalism as we should demand. Thank you Michael.

On Trading Sean Avery

Spoke to Neil Smith this am about this, from a logistics perspective only. So the Stars could waive Avery, he would clear. They would then recall him. Assuming the Leafs were able to get him on a claim, his salary would go down to about 2 million. The Leafs would then trade Blake to Dallas for a 2nd round pick.

Leafs dump Blake, and his $, get avery at a decent discount and a 2nd round pick

Wilbur’s Trade Proposal- Would You take Avery?

So Wilbur had an interesting thought tonight on his radio program. Trade Blake to Dallas for Avery and a second round pick. Wilbur also thought there was a way to do it through waiver so the buds would only have to pay Avery 2 million per. So Buds fans, would you make that deal???

Maple Leaf Reporter On My Mind

So, there I was enjoying my day yesterday when I read a post on Pension Plan Puppets (who if absolutely nothing else get my vote for best blog name!) about a certain Maple Leaf Reporter which you can read here.  Forget for a minute the flawed logic of his analogies, I have to tell you that I feel really shitty about his admission and I have to get it off my mind.  Forget the tongue in cheek fire site for a second, I couldn’t believe the guy in question actually admitted to it.  Think about this for a second.  He is supposed to be THE Leafs guy, the man who knows more about the team then anyone and he doesn’t watch any non Leaf games on TV??????? How messed up is that????

This morning I caught him on the air with Hogan and Toth (I mean Roscoe).  Allow me to go off on a tangent just for a minute.  I don’t know how the discussion started, however I picked up in time to hear Toth admit to the following:

He has “never been to a real sporting event of any consequence” He once attended an NFL game way back in Seattle.  Never been to a Baseball game with more then 30k people….
He prefers to attend sporting events that aren’t full so he doesn’t have to fight traffic on the way home.
He claims to attend hockey games at University of Michigan  where they get 9-10k per game….
The only reason I mention the University of Michigan part is that their stadium only hosts 6600. The other 2 items are remarkable. I think we all should chip in and get Toth a trip to a meaningful event.

Sorry, anyway, after that great moment in Toronto Sports Radio History, Hogan and Toth brought this reporter on. You know what? He really doesn’t watch games. They asked him about New Jersey and his only point of reference was the last time he saw them play the leafs live! How is that possible? I don’t care how many phone calls he makes, how long his drives are or least of all what classical music he listens too. That is irrelevant. I would hope that whomever (and I don’t care who it is) who is talking to me the consumer has done SOME homework so they can sound remotely intelligently. The stories of about their new starting goalie are fantastically interesting but tell me how that team is going to do against the Leafs and why. They should have some idea from personal knowledge of how they play, who is hot or not. Spitting out their record doesn’t count. Even McCown who doesn’t do much homework at least professes to watch some games on the tube. At least show you care. How can you bash the team or praise them when your only interaction with the competition is at the rink when the Leafs are playing them???

I had to get this off my chest as it has been bothering me all day. By the way that analogy that he makes between Avery and Michael Vick is deplorable. It is that type of stuff that got him in hot water with Avery before. As a very wise twitter friend suggested, the right football player to compare Avery to would be Terrell Owens. Avery didn’t kill dogs or at least be incarcerated for being involved with the murder of dogs.

The kid on 640 Jonas Siegel is very young and wet behind the ears… You can tell by listening to him, but at least he doesn’t wear argyle sweaters…. My advice to the kid is, start watching lots of games. Start asking lots of questions to guys like wilbur, McKenzie etc and start to articulate your opinions. Who cares if they are wrong. If you are informed, show that you do your homework you will do okay.

Make sure you look out for LT on TV tonight, he is going to the game.

Ego: The Reason Sean Avery Will Be Back

Go back over the last couple of years in the world of professional sports and ask yourselves this, how many “bad boys” have been written off only to return time and time again. How many time have we asked ourselves “How many strikes does _ get?” The reality is it usually is endless. There is one reason for this; EGO. Those who become coaches and general managers and even to a certain degree owners have EGO’s. In every sport there exists just enough EGO that says ” I am strong enough to control this guy, harness the talent and make him a player”.

In football think about Jimmy Johnson, Bill parcels. In baseball Tony Larussa come to mind. Hockey??? Glen Sather comes to mind, so does Mike Keenan. I think a part of me would suggest both Ron Wilson and Brian Burke. I just don’t see it now and with this team. So rest assured they were will be an appetite for Avery. The upside is just enough to wet the appetite. The EGO strong enough to think it can harness the character flaws.

Then there is the money issue. Most people have written that the Stars with Avery. Remember if they waive him now, after he clears waivers he become eligible for re-entry waivers. $3.875 a year through to the 2012-13 season becomes about 1.9 a year. Say what you want, there are a lot of folks running teams out there who think that if Avery gets help, is under their wings(EGO) he is a pretty good deal at 1.9 a year. For some reason I believe the 1.9 is too high but it’s late and I am sure someone out there smarter then me will have the right answer.

In any event, despite all the hoopla, Avery will be back. Bad boys with talent always get another shot. There are too many EGO’s out there who are sure they can fix contain him.

Avery to his Mother: “Heads Up”

Amazingly personal interview. It is hard not to feel badly for Sean Avery’s parents after listening to the interview. Here is a synopsis and I will post a link when it is available. Watch TSN for details tonight too.

“We don’t agree with what he said, he was out of line and I am amazed at the backlash that has been caused. It hasn’t ended. It hasn’t slowed down, and that is why I agreed to call.”

You can tell he was very effected by this. He sounds like a great guy and a teacher too.

“Sean’s mom and i talked to him about the money and what was coming to him when he signed with Dallas. It was a big deal and 16m is a lot of money even though we aren’t his agents, there were a ton of of conversations about the addedd pressure of the contract even though we aren’t his agents or coaches. His agents talked to him too.”

“Sean has been very frustrated. He Keeps to himself before games, put his headphones on before the game, and was painted as not being a team player for it. This has been hard and confusing to him. When this happened he was very frustrated. Sean is more respectful to his mom, she is the only one he listens to. I (his dad) talk to him about hockey, tried to talk to him about what he does off the ice. I don’t condone it, neither his mom neither of us I taught him that. He was frustrated beyond belief. ”

His father talked about learning about the incident. He got home early from work as a teacher and listened into hockey talk and heard all this stuff about Avery being suspended, he didn’t know what had happened. Sean Avery emailed his mom saying “heads up”.

“Both girls came to our house and became quite attached to us, and us to them. They are both lovely girls.”

Great interview I suggest listening in.