Friday, March 09, 2007

No place in the game for it! BOTH of them!

For those of you who have not seen SportsCenter either last night or this morning, you have missed two stories that are making me very ill.

One is obvious to all that know me. N.Y. Islanders forward Chris Simon took his stick to the head of N.Y. Rangers forward Ryan Hollweg late in the third period of last night's 2-1 Rangers win. See the video of the hit from

I want to make sure this is clear: there is NO PLACE in the game of hockey for taking your hockey stick to someone head. The act shows a total disrespect for the game and its players. Speaking of disrespect, this is just sixth headline on the site ... who was in charge of that site last night?

I don't care what Simon has to say, I don't want to hear it. All I want to hear is Colin Campbell suspending Simon for the rest of the year and playoffs. If they want to suspend him for more games next year, I am all for it.

The sport is in enough trouble between having game on a network NO ONE can find in Versus to having Commissioner Gary Bettman try and tell the Pittsburgh Penguins that it's OK to take less money to stay in a city. Hey Gary, tell ya what, write a check for the difference between the deals of Pittsburgh and Kansas City. You do that - then you can tell Mario Lemieux how to run his business. Right now, you are struggling running yours ... maybe you should try and fix that first.

Bottom line - send a message that the NHL won't put up with this! The irony was that yesterday was the three year anniversary of Todd Bertuzzi's hit on Steve Moore. There's a great story on Steve Moore trying to get back into the NHL that ran yesterday, as well as a good story from Damien Cox.

Other stories to see: John Dellapina from the NY Daily News , Larry Brooks from the NY Post, Wallace Matthews from Newsday, and Greg Logan from Newsday.

The other story is one that bothers me even more. According to, Pokey Chatman resigned as the women's basketball coach at LSU after the university became aware of an alleged inappropriate sexual relationship between Chatman and a former player on Chatman's team.

I know many of you don't follow women's basketball like I do, but I was totally shocked when I heard this. When the story first broke on Wednesday that Chatman would leave after the season, it didn't make any sense at all. I kept thinking why would you leave when things are going so well? Something had to be up. And unfortunately, it supposedly is.

Here's a 37-year-old woman who is running one of the most successful programs in the country. The Lady Tigers are ranked 10th and are 26-7. Chatman was 90-14 as LSU's head coach and was 15-5 as acting head coach during the end of the 2003-04 season, when longtime coach Sue Gunter left the team because of lung disease. LSU won SEC regular-season titles in her first two seasons as a head coach and made it to the Final Four both years. Chatman, a Louisiana native, has been at LSU as both a player and coach for nearly 18 years.

Read that paragraph again. This school has been her LIFE for 18 years. It's just sad that such a great coach would let herself get into such a horrible position.

Just sad.

Hate to end on a down note, so I wanted to throw in something I saw at last night's Thrashers game versus Montreal.

Midway through the 2nd period, Atlanta led 6-0 and were totally dominating the game. Once of the Montreal players tried to push and shove Ilya Kovalchuk around when out of nowhere came new Thrasher Keith Tkachuk to pummel the Canadiens player. He dropped the gloves and a building that was a little more than half filled exploded to cheer. Not only that the Thrashers bench rose as one to watch this. Read the AJC's Craig Custance story.

After all this time, last night, I felt as if Atlanta finally had a TOTAL TEAM. With that I am changing my opinion, not only will this team make the playoffs, they will win the Eastern Conference.


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