Loose Change: No Dope
Sparky MacPherson, Loose Change's crack investigative journalist, has been working overtime to get to the bottom of this whole Dick Pound vs. the National Hockey League spat.
Through the use of some key connections and a pair of bolt cutters, Sparky has been able to obtain sensitive World Anti Doping Agency documents that go a long way towards explaining Mr. Pound's relentless crusade.
The documents in question appear to be from some sort of personal journal kept by Mr. Pound. They chronicle the events leading up to his damning Nov. 24 announcement.
Oct. 5 2005
Opening night in the NHL. My beloved Canadiens are in Boston. Haven't seen Beliveau yet. I suspect he may be hurt. Players seem faster than I remember them as a wee lad. Montreal wins 2-1. Head hurts. Need a Sudafed.
Oct. 7 2005
Heard announcer say something puzzling tonight: Â“Kuzinski is looking to make a big open ice hit.Â” Could Kuzinski be looking to score some hashish or blow? Nah, it can't be. Later announcer mentions: Â“Beaumont pots another for the hat trick.Â” Did I hear him correctly? Did anyone else hear that?
Oct. 8 2005
Couldn't sleep last night. Kept awake by last night's revelations and the cat climbing the drapes for four hours straight. (Note to self: inquire into decaffeinated Folgers Cat Nip for next time). I suspect NHL may be a thinly-veiled drug haven. Really, who wears shorts on a frozen sheet of ice?
Oct. 9 2005
I fear NHL may have a more serious drug problem than first thought. Evidence builds. Is a Mighty Duck some sort of narcotic cocktail? Am I the only one who sees the direct connection between the Flames and crack pipes? Only a league awash in substance abuse would allow a team to be known as the Flyers.
Oct. 16 2005
Decided to give myself some time away from the game to regain perspective. I fear I may have only made it worse. Now constantly faced with a barrage of illicit references. Â“Bodycheck?Â” We at WADA call that a cavity search. Â“Freeze the puck.Â” Otherwise known as Â“hide the stash, Narcs are in the building.Â”
Oct. 22 2005
Attempting to build a case before going public. Took apart one of those Â“pucksÂ” the other day suspecting to find its core black tar derivative. My findings were inconclusive, although igniting the substance gave me a massive migraine. Need some Tylenol 3s.
Oct. 24 2005
Migraine kept me bed-ridden for two days. Started to hallucinate. Could have sworn I saw the Rangers leading their conference.
Oct. 25 2005
The quest continues. Now starting to document everything applicable to case. Players now into communal aspect of drug culture. Multiple references to Â“twoÂ” and Â“three man rushes.Â”
Nov. 2 2005
Haven't left the building in over a week. I fear the league may be onto me. Must maintain sanity and continue with crusade. Thankfully have abundance of American channels that keep me from any mention of the National Hockey League.
Nov. 9 2005
Why would a league allow Â“hash marksÂ” to be painted on the ice and why won't those goaltenders show their face?
Nov. 10 2005
They apparently have a ritual called a Â“faceoffÂ” where two players stand across from each other and fight over a frozen disc filled with Czechoslovakian black tar that's thrown to them by a Â“linesmanÂ” (cocaine protector?). Need a break from this hockey onslaught. Ah, the NBA. Now there's a league free of scandal.
Nov. 12 2005
The league pretends to police itself by meting out such shallow punishments as Â“two minutes for trippingÂ”. In this, the player will be sent to a small box adjacent to the ice surface where he will have 120 seconds to think about his addiction and its effect on his community. There are no medical authorities present, no methadone administered and no support group mechanism. In a time span, sometimes much shorter than two minutes, the player returns only to be faced with the increased allure of more infractions. He may even turn to hooking.
Nov. 15 2005
My calls to NHL HQ go unanswered. Try in vain to convince them my name is actually Dick Pound. League reps suggest I try knock-knock jokes instead.
Nov. 18 2005
Hooked up via conference call supposedly to cartel head office in New York. Greeted on video phone by someone named Gary who looks suspiciously like a Hobbit. Personable sort, although everything except his hairline is out of frame. I purchase something called a Center Ice package.
Nov. 22 2005
Prepare documented evidence at local Business Depot. Can't decide on teal or mauve pamphlet cover. For every fifty pages you print you get a free stapler. I decide to add two pages filled with words that rhyme with Â“knackwurstÂ” and that old sketch I made of me battling Godzilla in Olympic Stadium. Stapler jams on way home.
Nov. 23 2005
The bombshell drops on the media tomorrow. Nerves are starting to get to me. I need a cigarette.
Charlie Teljeur, creator of THN's hockeysockpuppettheatre, brings you Loose Change every Tuesday and Thursday, only on thehockeynews.com.
Want to talk to Charlie about love, life, or Loose Change? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org