A quick thought on Don Brennan's column suggesting that Ottawa Senators fans show up to games with paper bags on their heads...
Sure, it'll be good for a two-second lead-in to the game highlights on SportsCentre, but then what? In the past few years, the Senators have shown little interest in quelling fans' white noise, regardless of whether it comes in the form of embarrassment, disgust or any other visceral reaction.
In this business - and many others like it - nothing hurts more than indifference, and nothing expedites conflict resolution in a quicker fashion. Am I encouraging it? What do you think? Sure, it's obviously best to ride this mess of a season out, if only to take Bryan Murray's hand off the button during a rebuild. But there's nothing like a crowd of 10,000 or less in "Hockey Country" to show that this nonsense won't be tolerated.
So take the bag off your head, get out of Scotiabank Place, and go do some grocery shopping. Just because the Sens aren't productive doesn't mean you have to follow suit.
This is an idea I pilfered from my dear friend - and Sporting News Radio superstar - Sean Pendergast (um...I mean Brian Beckner...), but tweaked just a bit to make it my own. (You can take the girl out of traditional media...) Anyway, I think you'll catch on quick. Let's get started, shall we?
* Hockey ultimately benefits from Canada losing at the World Junior Hockey Championships, because competition, not dynasties, are the lifeblood of any sport. FACT.
* TSN's bloated coverage of the tournament, combined with this country's bravado (largely shouted into a vacuum of indifference) has made it difficult for me to support Team Canada. FACT.
* Team Russia's celebrations should always be watched with subtitles. FACT.
* The swearing by NHL players/coaches on HBO's 24/7 never warranted such a bombastic reaction. FACT.
* 24/7 provides completely unguarded insight into NHL players' lives. CRAP.
* The only way you're going to see the true side of a player is with a NannyCam. FACT.
* Regardless, fans are happy with this unprecedented access, and love to hear players swear because it's "fun." FACT.
* I don't get it. FACT.
* The answer to the first Blind Item in this post is indeed, Pierre McGuire. FACT.
* This idea, of course, is... CRAP.
* Chris Phillips will be traded before the end of this season. CRAP.
* Chris Phillips' trade value is far less than the bright-eyed optimists would assume. FACT.
* Erik Karlsson is proving that he can be effective at the NHL level as an offensive defenceman. FACT.
* In the process, Karlsson is picking up some very bad habits (i.e. attempting to cut a swath to the net through four opposing players, inevitably leading to a turnover). FACT.
* Ottawa Senators head coach Cory Clouston will be fired before the end of the season. CRAP.
* So will Bryan Murray. CRAP.
* Why would Mr. Eugene bother now? He'll just let them walk in April. FACT.
* A meddling owner combined with a flailing team means you'll hardly have your pick of the litter when it is time to replace the front office. FACT.
* Cory Clouston shouldn't be the head coach, but he can't be expected to get blood from a stone. The talent just isn't here. FACT.
* The Sens have hit rock bottom. CRAP.
* Talk to me when you've missed the playoffs for a good five years or so - barring a major overhaul, that's where this club is headed. FACT.