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In case you have reservations about labelling Don Cherry a sexist blowhard

28 Apr

For those of you with any doubt, here’s why Don Cherry’s comments last night were inexcusably sexist.

1. For equality in the work place men and women need to have equal access. Female (and gender/sexual minority!) sports journalists can’t have barriers like their gender barring them from a room if they have a job to do. If you think someone’s gender or sexuality is going to get in the way of them doing their job, then well, that’s sexist.

2. Lots of guys jumped up to scream discrimination about how male reporters are not allowed into women’s locker rooms. This is, of course, a complete fabrication, as male reporters are indeed allowed in women’s locker rooms, in the same manner most reporters are allowed into locker rooms: after a certain amount of time to let the athletes actually get cleaned up. Of course, this is a really unbalanced comparison to make, because women’s sports receive no where near the coverage (and reporters no where near the salaries) of men’s sports.

3. The players might be uncomfortable. I haven’t seen a statement from a player that he is uncomfortable for reasons that we should be sensitive to, but lets say that there are some. Fortunately for this player, who has presumably spent his life in locker rooms, that the modern facilities of the NHL have rooms for showering and then the common area where you see those interviews. Anyone uncomfortable with the “opposite” gender near them at a vulnerable time like showering don’t have to worry about the lady reporters coming back to see them. Anyone uncomfortable with being interviewed by someone of the opposite gender the way Keith Duncan sounded-off is just being sexist (ie the criticism is about the reporter’s sex/gender).

4. After being confronted with these facts everyone suddenly thinks that just no reporters should be allowed in locker rooms. If we weren’t talking about the entertainment business, I might be inclined to agree. However, Bettman and every other person running a sports league is striving to create immersive, reality TV-style entertainment, and $ audiences $ are $ eating $ it $ up. The NHL actually has a show called 24/7 for cripes sake – are we really going to pretend that a woman accidentally seeing Kadri’s peen while he’s towelling off is the end of morality and enough to keep women from job parity? Give me a break.

At least my hero Ron McLean echoed this sentiment last night, this is surely one for the scrapbook:

…sigh

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Patrick Burke Predicts a Gay NHLer Within 18 Months

12 Feb

Patrick Burke, son of ex-Leafs GM Brian Burke and founder of the You Can Play project, predicted today that there would be an out player in the NHL within the next year and a half.

In an AMA (Ask Me Anything) on the social news aggregator reddit.com, Burke wrote:

I believe within the next 18 months or so we will have an openly gay NHL player. It’s time. Our league’s ready.

Burke’s attitude regarding gender and sexual minorities in sport has always been positive and optimistic, however this is the clearest timline until someone in the league takes the responsibility of becoming the first openly gay sportsman in North America.

Burke elaborates a lot on his position as an advocate, as well as talks about his work in hockey. Read the AMA here.

Stanley Cup Final Update: One Game At A Time

9 Jun
It was a battle of confidence vs desperation and desperation surmised.

After falling 3-1 to the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday night, the Los Angeles Kings lost their chance at a perfect sweep for hockey’s greatest trophy on home ice in front of their own fans. Now the only chance at winning on home ice they have is if the series is taken to seven games. And I highly doubt a single player on their team wants that.

Game 4
With a record-setting crowd in the stands including stars and celebrities, the Los Angeles Kings were ready to send the New Jersey Devils golfing for the summer. But the Devils weren’t ready for a vacation.

They came out playing hard, out-shooting and out-hitting the Kings. After a scoreless first two periods, the Devils struck first, finally solving Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick, on a backhand goal from veteran Patrick Elias. The Kings weren’t ready to back down though, scoring exactly one minute later on a slapshot by star defenceman Drew Doughty on the power play.

That would be it for the Kings though, as the Devils Adam Henrique sniped a beautiful shot from the slot, beating Quick up high and putting the Devils up 2-1. That would be the goal that won them the game. Ilya Kovalchuk put home an empty-netter in the last twenty seconds, firmly sealing the deal and forcing a game 5.

“An open net and I didn’t miss! High 5!”

One Game At A Time
The last time a team came back from a 3-0 deficit to win the Stanley Cup was in 1946 when the Toronto Maple Leafs came back to beat the Detroit Red Wings in 7 games.

The Devils are confident though that they have it in them. The veterans on their team have enough playoff experience to know that you have to take it one game at a time.

They better be prepared though because the Kings will come out hard and strong. They’re a young, hungry team and they want that trophy. Badly. WIth a perfect road record in these playoffs, I’m looking for the Kings to hoist the Stanley Cup in New Jersey.

Do you think the Devils have it in them to come back? Will the Kings seal the deal in New Jersey? Game 6 is tonight, 8:00 p.m.

NFL Players Open to Gay Teammates

24 May

Outsports reached out to a dozen NFL players, and found that they would welcome gay teammates. While this will come as no surprise to those of us already out to our teams, it is some good news for those still in the closet.

With all of the support athletes are getting at the professional level, maybe we won’t have to wait much longer for the visibility afforded by an out sportsman.

Read the full article at Outsports.com.

WEEKLY PLAYOFF UPDATE: Notice of Eviction

23 May

Well Phoenix, it’s time to pack your bags and hit the golf greens. I hear Arizona has some beautiful courses. Although you can be sure none of them are as beautiful as the Stanley Cup.

“Don’tcha wish your boyfriend was hot like me?”

LA: Looking Forward

This week in the NHL playoffs, the Los Angeles Kings eliminated the Phoenix Coyotes in 5 games. The elimination win came last night near the end of the first overtime period in Phoenix, maintaining the Kings perfect playoff road record.

It was a particularly hard loss to swallow for the Coyotes, considering seconds before the winning goal Kings’ captain Dustin Brown laid a mean knee-on-knee hit on Michal Roszival after the play had gone dead, injuring the young player and sending him to the locker room.

It was a hard-fought series and the Coyotes gave it their best, but it wasn’t enough to take down the hungry Los Angeles team. The Kings play a tight game against the boards, forechecking and tiring out the opposing team’s defense. And they’re fast. Really fast. That’s the one thing I noticed watching the game last night – they beat the Coyotes to every single puck and dominated with puck control during almost the entire overtime period. You knew the Yotes were toast. It was just a matter of time until superstar goalie Mike Smith would slip up and miss a puck. So the Kings kept putting them on net and sure enough, at 17:42 of the OT period, the puck found the back of the net.

The Los Angeles Kings are going to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time since 1993.

“I don’t even know what this trophy is called.”

Control in the East

On the East Coast, the Rangers and Devils are fighting it out for the Eastern Conference Championship. With the series tied at 2, this could swing either way. The Rangers are a good team… when they want to be. Infamous for their slow starts, if they fall behind early in the game they’re not coming back. Proof of this was in game 4, when they fell 4-1 to the determined Devils. The team pushed hard, completely shutting down the Rangers and frustrating them to the point of taking cheap shots, like the one that Mike Rupp delivered to Brodeur.

“I swear Ref, he pushed his head into my fist!”

As the coaches met at the end of the benches and hurled insults at each other, you’re reminded of just how much bad blood exists between these two teams. The series has been tame so far, but something tells me that going forward we’ll be seeing two rougher teams who just won’t back down.

Still Anybody’s Series

If the Rangers want to win, they have to rally as a team. Lundqvist has to be at the top of his game because when he’s not, the rest of the team seems to slump as well. They need to start seeing more production from big point-getters like Gaborik, Richards, and Callahan.

And the Devils? They’re a strong, young team but they have to be at their absolute best to beat the Rangers. There is no margin for error. They have to be on top all game, every game. If not, their season will be cut shorter than they’d like it to. This one is turning out to be hard to predict, but I’m still calling for the Rangers to win it, although more likely in 7 games than in 6.

Game 5 is slated for tonight at 8:00PM at Madison Square Garden.

What do you think, bros? Who will meet the Kings in the finals?

EDIT: For those of you interested in jumping into the conversation in the comments section below, here is the play being discussed:

What do you think? Clean hit?

Round 3…FIGHT!

14 May

Alright hockey bros, so the playoffs are in full swing and if there’s one thing to be said for them so far it’s “HOLY FUCKING SHIT HOW DID THAT HAPPEN!?!”

At the halfway mark, there are 4 teams left: the last place team in the West; the bankrupt team who can’t sell tickets; a team with – who’s got to be now – the oldest player in the league; and the first place team in the East.

A quick check of the standings will show that three out of four of these teams found themselves in 6th place or worst at the end of the season. Except for Phoenix but that doesn’t really count since they were only third because they finished at the top of their crappy division.

See? Obviously the Pacific Division is the shittiest of them all.

In the Western Conference Finals, we’ve got the Los Angeles Kings & the Phoenix Coyotes. The last place team and the poor team. Two teams who, quite honestly, nobody thought would get through the first round, let alone the second. LA knocked off both the 1st & 2nd seed teams in the West in 9 games. Not bad for being the last seed. Phoenix knocked out the powerhouse Blackhawks & well-balanced Predators in 10 games.Clearly New York is going to win, right? The 2nd place team facing all these low seeds? Well, it’s anyone’s guess. So far, these playoffs have been ruled by the underdogs.

In the Eastern Conference Finals, we’ll be seeing the New Jersey Devils face-off against the New York Rangers. The rivalry between these two resulted in a line brawl late in the season this year so we should be in for one hard-fought, competitive series.

I think the most valuable player for every team that’s still surviving right now is their goalie. The Kings’ Jonathan Quick, on top of being nominated for Vezina Trophy for best goaltender in the 2011-2012 season, has done everything short of standing on his head to get his team to where they are. Mike Smith of the Phoenix Coyotes has been solid between the pipes with a .948 save percentage & 1.77 goals against average. The Devils are sticking with Marty Brodeur, who’s 40 years old. Enough said about that. And Henrik Lundqvist, apart from being the hottest bro in the NHL, has been the heart and soul of the New York Rangers this year. He is also a Vezina trophy nominee and my pick to win that trophy.

Marry me, Henrik? Please?

Other than their goalies being super stars, these teams got to their conference finals by playing as a team. They’ve each had 3rd and 4th liners step up in a big way scoring OT goals, getting down to block shots, and making big game-changing hits. With the kind of team mentality that these four teams have, it’s hard to predict a winner.

I am going to anyways.

My Conference Finals predictions are:

Los Angeles wins over Phoenix in 7 games.

New York wins over New Jersey in 6.

What are your predictions?

Love Between Sens and Leafs Fans Possible

20 Mar

Leafsproposal

Last weekend two awesome Lady Bros proved that love can span huge divides. Leafs fans and Sens fans rarely make peace, let alone watch the game together in the same room. But Alicia and Christina will be watching together for the rest of their lives after a proposal on the ice at the Leafs/Sens match up. And the crowd goes wiiiiillldddd!

You can check out the video here!