Friday, April 18, 2008

Around The League ... Murray Says Emery Is Gone ... Gaborik Disappears ... Over The Edge Stays (Why Can't It Disappear Too?)

As expected, the beat writers spent all their energy writing about Ray Emery after the fall of the Senators to the Penguins. There was nary a mention of John Paddock's contribution to the unravelling of this team or any other possible factor. Unfortunately for the writers, no one got the knock out home run article they wanted because no player threw Emery under the bus like they expected. In fact, he was defended by most of his teammates and even Bruce Garrioch had a hard time trying to muster his usual contempt for the 25 year old.

Regardless, it looks like Emery has played his last game as a Senator because GM Bryan Murray strongly hinted in today's press conference that he's going to "explore all options", including a trade or a buyout of Emery's contract. It will be interesting to see what Murray comes up with because if he is thinking that Martin Gerber is the answer, he better get around to signing him to a contract extension. Gerber is unrestricted after next season. In today's conference, Murray tepidly characterized Gerber's performance as "fine" and that if there's an opportunity to upgrade, he'd do that.

It's a bizarre situation the team finds itself in. Emery is detested by the fans so much that Gerber has been made to look like a hero when in reality, he is a very average goalie with some major flaws in his game. The fans seemed to divide into camps with each side calling the other goalie names.

Perhaps the best thing to do is start over with two new goalies. But that is easier said than done. So do you go for skill (Emery) or likeability (Gerber)?

Frankly, everyone should be sick of talking about it. I know I am.


Seriously, is there a worse radio show anywhere on the planet than Team 1200's Over The Edge with Glen Kulka and Lee Versage?

It's absolute torture to listen to these guys say the exact same things day in and day out all season long. It's like they have a set of talking points that must not be strayed from and the message is "The Senators don't work hard enough" , "Ray Emery is a deviant monster" and "The Senators still don't work hard enough". That's their level of sophistication on all subjects. They speak only to the lowest common denominator and somehow that passes for sports talk radio. It's like listening to two cavemen arguing over whether the number 3 comes before the number 4 (and they both get it wrong). It's too bad because Versage used to be pretty interesting and fair-minded but the Kulkster influence has ruined him for good.

I also feel sorry for callers who try to express an opinion different from the "agenda". Kulka tells them they're an idiot and they go back to speculating on whether or not Ray Emery has a drug habit, which Kulka ridiculously insinuated back in January. How the station didn't get sued is beyond belief.

Now that Joe Thornton is off the hot seat, the next guy in the firing line is the Wild's Marian Gaborik.

He didn't just miss shots. He had trouble controlling the puck. He had trouble touching the puck. At times, Gaborik, one of the most gifted players in the world, seemed to lose all motor skills. Gaborik has been a wonderful player here, but he is the most passive of hockey stars, a player who sometimes waits for opportunities instead of creating them.

- Star Tribune

The first thing the Senators should do is sign Mike Commodore. This guy is awesome on and off the ice. He was one of the better players against the Penguins and the team can always use his size and character. It sounds like he might need convincing though. Hard to blame him after the gong show that just concluded.

Have a nice weekend hosers.


Peter said...

That borderline slander on Emery was the highlight of the year for Over The Edge.

As for Commodore, definitely. He hit his stride in the playoffs, and I think he would definitely benefit from playing an entire year under whatever system is in place next season.

arzee said...

One of the four defences against slander, you may or may not know, is truth. Perhaps the broadcasters who should have been sued but weren't had it on their side? Otherwise, it begs the question: why weren't they sued?

Anonymous said...

Do you go for skill or likeabiliaty? This is the NHL you go for skill. That's Gerber-his save percentage, the major measuring stick of a goaltender's skill, is well above Emery's. In addition to the skill factor, Gerber has likeability and class. Bonus.