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Dose of Reality #27

January 21, 2007

Dose of Reality

I was at the Red Wing game on Friday and came away impressed. The Jackets put together a team effort, worked very hard, and came away with a victory. The Wings did look like a group of guys at the office on the afternoon before a three day weekend, but they too, worked hard in the third period and gave 100%, getting a goal on some incidental contact but not a win.

So as a fan, what am I to focus on or find inspirational during the second half of a season that is very unlikely to have any extra games in it? Personally, I want the employees who guard the entrances to the Arena to stop acting like hard-asses and let me in without asking me to empty my pockets and twirl around with my open coat raised above my waist.

Another wish for me is to be able to watch replays of the game instead of viewing some “clever” marketing pitch. In the Friday game, the Wings appeared to have scored a goal in the first period and the games was delayed for several minutes while the officials checked it out. Do you think we fans, the ones who pay to attend the game, could see more than a single three-second replay of the non-goal? No, not at Nationwide. You want to see replays, save your money and stay home. Nothing beats watching a hockey game live, but Kimberly Kershaw thinks we need to watch her videos and presentations as much as the game itself. The game is secondary to her, something that she insists on dressing up with predictable montages and commercials. Her mocking of Detroit did not come back to haunt her like it usually does because they actually won. Like most people, I am accustomed to watching sports on television and when something happens, I get to watch it several times. If the play raised some questions, I get to watch it many, many times. But when these things occur at a home Blue Jacket game, I might see it once if the team runs out of Ohio Health ads.

By the way, do you like the new Ohio Health ad that shows a “professional” hockey player wearing skate guards? It looks like his mother dressed him at home and dropped him off at the studio like a Hockey Mom takes her kid to the rink. How much did Ohio Health pay for that lame ad?

I saw Bryan Berard at the game, so I guess he is serious about coming back. If he is ready to play, that’ll make things interesting in the locker room. As a fan, I have to ask myself, do I want to see the team score more goals or see our goalies forced to make a lot more saves? Which do you prefer?

I have come to the conclusion that Fredrik Norrena plays better with breaks between his starts. He was terrific on Friday with a quality effort. So can Ken Hitchcock devise a plan to give him the rest he needs? Leclaire will soon be back and with the All Star break, the team might get through this. It may be necessary for the team to bite the bullet and play Conklin more to give Freddy the rest. Getting a few less wins out of Norrena is better than getting one win out of four or five starts.

To all you season ticket holders out there, you will be receiving the first renewal hints within the next 30 days. Try not to scream at the representative or break your keyboard punching the delete key. I think you should ask to personally speak with the President and General Manager of the team and ask him what he plans to do next season to justify giving him your money again.

– Truth Serum

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