The following is purely fictional and meant for entertainment purposes only. By entertainment, we mean we hope you laugh while reading this, while framing this, or while burning this. Any similarities between this and actual events is strictly coincidental and frankly, dumb luck. Remember to remind your lawyer about the made-up part, OK?
In a slower week the Gordie HoweCam spying saga would have been the lead story Â– full headliner. Gordie battles two nosy neighbors who don't like him supposedly violating a local ordinance by running his business out of his home. Gordie contends he's not selling memorabilia on his front porch, he's selling crack cocaine (uh, I may have made that part up). Still, the neighbors remain furious. It's Mr. Hockey versus The Dorfmans. Where's Walter Matthau when you need him? Oh right, he's dead.
Instead, this week we are met once again with the onslaught and the overkill of another evil Shot to The Head (not to be confused with that song by Bon Jovi, by the way, but it is early and his last bit of fresh material was in 1989, so don't hold your breath). Steve Downie hits Dean McAmmond blindside to the old noggin and Â– cue the trumpets Â– the hockey world is up in arms over this continuing blemish on the sport even though there are many others (Go Coyotes!).
To put your mind at ease, Mr. McAmmond is apparently OK and has full motor functions and has maintained pretty much all of his cerebral faculties although he keeps complaining about apparently being beaten up in the spring by a gang of ducks. Still, good to have you back. Most of you, anyway.
Mr. Downie has issued a personal apology to Mr. McAmmond, which really hasn't been a successful defense since stealing crayons in the first grade, but you have to give the man credit for at least trying.
And now comes the excruciating part, which is more painful and has effects that linger long after Dean's stars stop spinning and his birds once again nest. That part being the glut of self-proclaimed pundits who will stress, ad nauseum, that (a) there is no room for this kind of act in the game and (b) the league needs to come down hard on Steve Downie to once, and for all, rid this from the sport.
Imagine the men of power in the league offices right now: Â“Well, we weren't going to do much about this whole affair, but then had a change of heart after what that guy said about it on SportsDesk.Â”
Really, is there a sizable amount of support to the contrary on this subject? Are there bloggers or talking TV heads out there blaming McAmmond for the damage? He should have had his head up. You never know when someone might come flying through the air, three feet off the ice, aiming at your medulla. It's just common sense.
Come on. Aside from complete decapitation, Downie pretty much ran the table of on-ice offenses. If he'd of nailed the landing, he would be looking at a perfect score. Of course, if Dean McAmmond had bothered to pony up the extra cash for the early warning detection system on his helmetÂ…
Still, there is no reasonable way things like this will ever be removed from the game. They can be minimized and marginalized, but they will never be eradicated completely.
As long as there are large, angry and well-paid men flying around at crushing speeds, there will be stupid acts, scary collisions and scrambled cerebellum. You could throw a lifetime ban at Downie and someone, soon, would be there to wear the villain's mask. Marty McSorley begat Donald Brashear. Donald Brashear begat Chris Simon. Curly begat Moe.
And at that point, there will be another body lying motionless on the ice, Cuckoo over Cocoa Puffs, and the rafters will ring once again with the experts' call to arms.
The only differences this time, would be a different name to complain about and the complainer would be working at another network.
Same clown, different shoes.
Charlie Teljeur, creator of THN's hockeysockpuppettheatre, brings you Loose Change every Tuesday and Friday only on thehockeynews.com.
Want to talk to Charlie about love, life, or Loose Change? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org