Thursday, September 10, 2009

NHL or the Olympics? And Opening Night for the NFL!

NHL superstar Alexander Ovechkin made a profound statement Wednesday to ESPN.com about going to the Olympics: "I don't care... I'll go play in the Olympic Games for my country. If somebody says to me, 'You can't play,' see ya."

The skilled Washington Capitals winger is referring to the NHL's proposal to suspend players for going to play for their respective countries in the 2014 Olympics, which will be in Sochi, Russia in order to discourage NHL players from interrupting their seasons with the NHL to go to the Olympics.

One reason many owners and NHL exceutives are concerned about their players and the possibility of injuries that affect their playing status when they return to the League. The risk of injury in the Olympics is possible and it has occurred before.

The most recent and crucial injury suffered in the Olympics by an NHL player was former goaltender Dominik Hasek when he was with the Senators. Of course, as NHL followers know, Hasek never really recovered from that injury and the goaltending duties were eventually handed to Ray Emery, while Hasek left the team and retired.

However, major injuries from the Olympics are not common, and players often come back and after a game or two get back to regular season action. As for Alex Ovechkin, tough as he is, he would probably come back to the Capitals first game back.

The other concern is the break that the NHL takes in the middle of the season. Games are stopped for about two weeks in February for the Winter Olympics and teams are concerned about the mindset of teams after that break. Also of course, is the concern over time lost in gaining money from games.

But if players, especially at the caliber and celebrity status of Alex Ovechkin, want to play for their country, and make statements like Ovechkin did, it would not be wise for the NHL to go through with suspending players for wanting to represent their country of origin. Considering the next Olympics take place in Russia, and the number of players that are originally from there, it would be a BAD look for the NHL to do that.

If the NHL were to seriously suspend or discourage players in anyway for wanting to win their country a medal in 2014, I see it happening like this: Alex Ovechkin could very well go ahead and play in the Olympics. The NHL will suspend him, along with a couple of other players. What happens then is that not only do fans get angry, but players get angry. It's also a possiblity that other leagues will take note, and all those international players the NHL get will transfer to those leagues for more personal freedom.

Therefore, the NHL needs to be smart about this one. Do they really want to lose fans and players over a couple of weeks in the season? The NHL already suffers from poor decisions made by executives and the commisioner Gary Bettman. They do not like to focus on the correct way to make business. But if they want to remain a league, they will have to refrain from suspending players for being patriotic. You don't want Ovie to ruin you. The loss from suspension is greater than the gain.

Note to NHL: get it together.

Notes...

NFL Opening Night

Today was the opening day for NFL football. I was very excited to come back from a long hard day and a fire drill to kick back and watch some football.

It turned out to be a really exciting game. The Pittsburgh Steelers seemed to have the upper-hand most of the time, with the Tennesee Titans showing up on bursts of energy and skillful performance. And despite the fact that it was low-scoring all night, there was much intensity and aggresiveness from both teams - remained action-packed. The only thing is, that it's games like this where you wish that they could play more overtime instead of the anti-climactic first possession ender on a field goal.

What I'm concerned about though is this Madden Curse that is oh-so true... Troy Pololamlu... And you want to tell me that him being out 3-6 weeks possibly has nothing to do with being on the cover of Madden 10? Those who don't believe in it are in denial...

Now for Sunday, I'm going to go out and enjoy a full-fledged day of football, and watch my team, the Cowboys, play :)

Still not the Hamilton Coyotes?

Jim Ballsillie (I saw someone joke around and call it Balls-silly - which made my day).... I'm getting REALLY tired of seeing text after text every day from my NHL notifications that tell me the NHL has denied the Phoenix Coyotes from moving to Hamilton, Ontario.

My issue is that WHO CARES ABOUT THE COYOTES?! For real though? Who does!? People are not really fighting to keep the Coyotes in Phoenix, so why not make more money with the team and move them to a market that ACTUALLY CARES about a hockey team? Try again in Phoenix when the NHL is a major sport again. This may be continued at a later date.

The Caps' starting goalie is...

And finally, I'm happy to see Simeon Varlamov loving Arturs Irbe, his new goalie coach, and his new mask. Although coach Bruce Boudreau has stated that Jose Theodore is the official starter, he also claims that if Varlamov ends up playing better than Theodore, then he could very well then be the starter over Theodore at a later date. I'm pulling for Varly, but whoever starts needs to get my hockey team to a Stanley Cup!

4 comments:

  1. Move the Coyotes to KC. We deserve them more than Phoenix. Besides, a move from Phoenix to Hamilton would not only turn Americans off seeing a team from a major American market go to a minor league Canadian market, but it would totally screw up the conferences. There are NO teams in the east that could make the move to the west without screwing divisions and making travel impossible in the west. No to Hamilton.

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  2. still think that TV screen at the 50 is an abomination

    yet again, I'm a Skins fan :)

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  3. Haha Crazy Canton Cuts!
    I can't lie I'm not too happy with it, it's really weird, and I'm one of those traditionalists in sports... I swear Jerry Jones has just literally lost his mind, and there's no coming back for him, although they don't look bad this year as a team... Just wish he would have done things differently in the off season besides this tv lol...

    As for the Skins, good luck :D

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  4. Hmm... That's an interesting proposal there to move them to KC. They wanted to move Pittsburgh there before. Unfortunately, I don't like the idea of moving the team in America. I think there are cities in the West in Canada that you can move the team to. It's not like Americans care to watch Phoenix and I think if I'm not mistaken that Phoenix is in Arizona, which is in America :P lol. But really, I don't see Americans throwing a fit if the Coyotes went somewhere in Canada. But I agree with no Hamilton to be honest. No more Ontario teams!

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