DENVER, CO - FEBRUARY 02: T.J. Galiardi #39 of the Colorado Avalanche tries to battle his way past Jared Spurgeon #46 of the Minnesota Wild at the Pepsi Center on February 2, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Someone from Hockey Night in Canada is getting into trouble, but it's not Don.
When last we left Ron MacLean, the host of Hockey Night in Canada was linking the Hindenburg to Foster Hewitt and Martin Brodeur on an NHL playoff game in New Jersey last Sunday. No doubt pleased with contextualizing his intros, MacLean turned his inner History Channel to 9/11 as the Washington Capitals played host to the New York Rangers on Wednesday night.
Having first said that, "It’s crazy to compare what the emergency responders did during that time," MacLean went on to do just that, comparing hockey players to the heroes of that disaster in New York. "They are like police officers, they are like firefighters. You can’t fight fire with ego. The pain these men have faced, the price they keep on paying, the hearts they keep on lifting. It’s been through and through, five games in. See the commitment, they are ready to go again. … We all know about the firefighters, our worst day is their every day."
If you are in Canada, and you have HBO, you might want to look for Theo Fleury's documentary.
While director Larry Day is clearly empathetic to Fleury’s plight, this is not an uncritical account. Friends, family members, players and coaches are forthcoming about the hurt Fleury’s hurts have induced. Nor does Fleury downplay the pain he has caused.
Fleury is, without question, one of the most compelling and complex characters to emerge from the often cloistered world of professional sport. As was the case with player Sheldon Kennedy, it takes abundant courage to speak out against a sexual aggressor and to support others who have undergone similar indignities.
Time flies — former Edmonton Oilers stick boy Ray Whitney turned 40 on Tuesday.
It was 24 years ago that Whitney, now a winger with the Phoenix Coyotes, was wedging his frame into the mosh-pit picture celebrating the Oilers’ fourth Stanley Cup. It was the last championship photo with Wayne Gretzky — three months later he would be the property of Los Angeles Kings owner Bruce McNall.
Fast-forward to the 2011-12 NHL season, which has been a very memorable one for Whitney. He reached 1,000 career points in the NHL. And the Coyotes has reached the NHL Western Conference final.