For the three of you who followed my old blog, you’ll remember The Backcheck quite well. It’s basically a series of quick-hit thoughts, most of which on topics that don’t really deserve full-length posts without diluting it with filler. Some have likened The Backcheck to Elliotte Friedman’s great 30 Thoughts column on CBCSports.ca, a comparison I see as nothing more than an insult to Friedman. The Backcheck stands alone as what it is and hopefully you’ll enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy writing it.
Starting with Habs stuff…
• I always like to take special note of my initial reactions when big Habs news breaks and when I heard about Michel Therrien’s hiring…..I shrugged my shoulders. Underwhelmed probably best describes how I feel about the move but I remain so badly scarred from the previous regime that my optimism in Bergevin & Co. fuels my “wait and see” approach with Therrien. I look forward to seeing how he’s evolved as a coach.
• Therrien said all the right things at his (re-)introductory press conference Tuesday. I was relieved more than anything to hear his emphasis on not getting pushed around and emphasizing work ethic with the promise that Bell Centre fans will get a product they’ll want to cheer for. On the other hand, I can’t remember an introductory press conference when the new hire HASN’T said all the right things.
• Patrick Roy held a press conference Wednesday to address his not being named head coach of the Montreal Canadiens. That sentence right there encompasses why I’m glad he was not named head coach.
…and on to other stuff.
• I’ve rather enjoyed how the widespread Internet theory of “low seeds don’t succeed in the playoffs because they tire themselves just trying to get there” has now shifted to “low seeds are succeeding because they got used to playing desperate hockey just trying to get to the playoffs” all thanks to the Los Angeles Kings.
• Have to admire Ray Shero identifying and addressing his team’s one glaring weakness so aggressively with the trade/signing of Tomas Vokoun. I believe a much different script would have been written for these playoffs had Marc-André Fleury provided even average goaltending for the Penguins.
• I’m still scratching my head as to why Brian Burke was reluctant to pull off a Vokoun deal simply because he didn’t want to offer the net-minder a second year. Sure, Vokoun is an injury risk but with such a liability in the Toronto net, the relatively minimal risk definitely shouldn’t have won over the potential reward of ending a seven-year playoff drought.
• Congratulations to Patrick Burke and the You Can Play team on celebrating their three-month anniversary this week. The progress the project has made in such a short period is admirable and getting to a point where sexual orientation is a non-issue in locker rooms in all sports and casual homophobia is eradicated should be something we should all do our part in striving for. Read/see more at youcanplayproject.org.
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