Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Hodgson to the Leafs for Kaberle?

The internetz are all a twitter (and there too) with a rumor that has the Canucks sending prized prospect Cody Hodgson to the Leafs for D Tomas Kaberle. The main source of this is Ken Campbell of The Hockey News in his article speculating the Leafs could pull this off.

I have to say I got a good chuckle at the mere thought of this, as the chances of the Canucks and Leafs coming together on a trade are about as good a bet as getting a genuine, heart-felt apology from Rick Reilly. But just for fun, let's say I was the GM of the Canucks, and Brian Burke calls to discuss this possibility; here's what it might look like...

GM: Hello... oh, it's you. Mhm. Yeah, unusually warm. Good, good. That's funny, it sounded like you said you'd give us Kaberle for Hodgson. Ah. Ok, thought I was going to have to look for some Q-tips. And what else? No Brian, I mean what else are you going to give... Hello? Hello???

Anyways, if we were to entertain such nonsense, the package I would want to see would look like this:

To Toronto: Cody Hodgson
To Vancouver: Tomas Kaberle; a written admission of guilt proclaiming every instance of tampering he and his staff was involved in with the Canucks; the removal of the Silver Dollar buried somewhere in the ice at Canada Hockey Place; David Backes to be replaced on the US Olympic Team with either Keith Tkachuk, Doug Weight, Mike Modano or Bill Guerin; and when all those are completed, they may have Kyle Wellwood and Steve Bernier.

Fair? No. We'll keep Wellwood.

The Finns rolled to an easy victory over Belarus today, 5-1. They outshot the Belarus team 45-12, who didn't take my advice on dumping the puck in from the bench area on Kiprusoff.

Daniel and Henrik Sedin make their debut at this years Olympics this afternoon as the Swedes take on Christian Ehrhoff and the Germans. The Sedins will man the top line with one time NHL'er and CDC fan-boy hearthrob Matias Weinhandl. Weinhandl played on a line with Hank & Dank in the Swedish Elite League before they came to the NHL, so the chemistry will be there. You just know that the 'net will explode if Weinhandl is even remotely better with the twins than say, Trent Klatt. The potential for 'ZOMG Sing Weinhandel now!!!1!!! Giiiss you stupid moran!!!' posts on is so high I fear for the safety of the 'net.

Jaromir Jagr, with his mullet back and in full effect will take to the ice at 9 tonight leading the Czechs in a bloody battle against the Slovaks. Haha, just kidding. It will be more likely to feature dives, cheapshots and a sissy slapfight or two. Or maybe not. Then again, the sissy slapfights will probably come against the Russians, now that I think about it.

The Canadian Women are up 5-0 over Sweden after 1 period, which means we can look forward to more calls to abolish Women's hockey from the games as well as posts from homegrown commentators chastising them for being un-Canadian. News flash: Until the IIHF changes the goals for differential as a tie breaker, no team in the right mind would hold back. It's hockey. They're in it to win, and these other countries will only get better by playing the best. The game takes time to grow, remember we used to beat the Russians, Swedes and Finns like this years ago. Stop being so bloody impatient.

Really hoping I can get the podcasts up and running soon, been a long and trying few months to be sure. Thanks to everyone who took the time to read my post yesterday, was one of the best traffic days I've had for this blog. I appreciate it.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Golden Pole

For many of us the Winter Olympics don't really start until the Mens Hockey Tournament gets underway, and it's a special moment for me as the Canadians take on Norway in the opener. For the last 3 years my wife and I have been the caretakers of the Sons of Norway lodge in Victoria. Hanging over the bar is a little momento to symbolize the true meaning of the Olympic spirit and THE special bond between the two countries that was forged at the 2006 games in Turin.

It was 4 years ago Sunday that Canadians Sara Renner and Beckie Scott were competing in the Women's Team Sprint in Cross-Country Skiing. Renner suffered what could have been a disastrous mishap: a broken pole during the race. The coach of Norway's squad, Bjørnar Håkensmoen saw this and without thinking gave his team's spare pole to Renner. Renner and Scott went on to finish in 2nd for the Silver medal, the Norwegians finished in 4th.

Much was reported about Project Maple Syrup, which saw 7200 tins of the sticky sweet Canadian treat shipped to Norway to say thanks to Håkensmoen. But Keith Wells, who was at the time a sports reporter for CHEK TV in Victoria decided to also show the country's appreciation for the selfless act. HE presenting the lodge with a special "Golden Pole". It hangs proudly in the lodge over top of the bar (known affectionately as 'Valhalla', one of the two destinations of those slain in battle according to Norse legend) and is one of the best memories associated with the Olympics for members of the lodge. Wells has moved on from the station but the pole will always be there to celebrate the connection for the members, many of whom were born in Norway.

A little sappy sentiment? Perhaps. But a nice reminder of the real message of the games: sportsmanship and the human spirit always overcomes adversity and recognizes no borders. I will be cheering loudly for Canada today, but through my association with the Sons of Norway, I will also be rooting for them to keep it close. Well, somewhat.