Thursday, February 17, 2005

Rejoice! Rejoice! Hockey is gone!

Crack open the champagne! Don't waste your time pouring the bubbly into a cup. Just swig straight from the bottle.

The NHL is D-O-N-E! Gone! Finito! Audi 5000! Peaced out!

I've never used this many exclamation points in two paragraphs since I first learned how to write two paragraphs in a row. Then again, this is a most glorious day.

I feel like Eddie Murphy's girl in 1985 because I just want to party all the time.

No more hockey. As my boy Busta Rhymes used to say, "Woo-hah! Woo-hah! Got ya all in check."

Technically, Mr. Rhymes, there ain't no more checking going on. Not on the ice. Not by the bank tellers in hockey players' banks.

You want to watch hockey now? Go rent "Swingers" and watch the Superfan 99 scene. Or hop on e-Bay, buy Sega, call your buddies over, pop in NHL Hockey '93 and do "The Move." Maybe you'll make that one save and win, 24-23. (Ring a bell, Levittown friend Eddie K?)

If that doesn't whet your hockey appetite, spend a few more buckaroos (something NHL owners used to do) on eBay and get the vintage Nintendo. Pop in the Ice Hockey game, select three fat guys and one skinny guy and go beat the Russians.

If that doesn't work, resign yourself to reruns of "Miracle."

If that doesn't make you grow a mullet, loose two teeth and drink Stoli all day, then here are three words for you: Blades. Of. Steel.

Because that's the only hockey you're going to see for a long time. At least a year. More, with any luck.

The worst sport in the history of worst sports has eliminated itself because the owners were stupid then and the players are stupid now. I care not where the blame gets placed in the next few days. It cannot take away all that we've accomplished on this tremendous day.

Ironically, hockey, the fifth of the four major professional team sports, went were no other sport had gone before. It canceled its entire season. Not even baseball did that.

Players' association executive director Bob Goodenow may not have played these negotiations too well. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman may not have played these negotiations too well. However, they combined to put ESPN analyst/mullet magnate Barry Melrose out of a job and off my television, and for that, they should be commended. (Hey, Bobby, Gary, if you're reading, can you go after Jim Rome next? Please. I'll go to an Islander game if I have to . . . once the league returns in 2009).

Let's weigh the pros and cons of life without the NHL:

Pros
  • No more having to wonder why the two-line pass is illegal?
  • Other sports have more pronounceable names.
  • Earning 1 point for losing a game in overtime? You f-bombing lose and still get rewarded? That's just plain stupid.
  • Bad haircuts are only something you see in childhood pictures.
  • No more "NHL on thin ice" headlines followed by "NHL on thinner ice" headlines the next day.
  • More hockey dad fights at amateur/youth league games. (Those are always fun; almost as good as NASCAR crashes.)
  • We can watch Nassau Coliseum decay even further without having to go inside it.

    Cons
  • Hmmm . . .
  • . . . I'm thinking . . .
  • . . . Uh, gimme a minute . . .
  • . . . Yeah, still thinking . . .
  • . . . Ah, here's one . . .
  • . . . Nah, that's not a con . . .
  • . . . How about this one? . . .
  • . . . Nope, not a con . . .
  • . . . OK, OK, I got one, for real . . .
  • . . . More attention paid toward regular-season NBA games.

    I'll make that trade and I don't even need cash considerations or conditional draft picks.

    Bye bye NHL.

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