CH returns with The Patented Chris-Check to ease your hockey jones.
Yes, that Jason Blake. The one with a rare form of cancer who continues to play in the NHL. Bad things have been known to not only happen to good people. Avery is a jerk, but I find it extremely hard to believe anyone would call Blake out on this without being overly provoked. Then just a few weeks ago Downie gives Blake a reverse hammer-punch to the face, while he is being held by a linesman. Even for Downie, this seems a little extreme under the circumstances. Downie was somehow not kicked out of the game, yet there was no comeuppance whatsoever delivered by any of the Leafs. You’ve got to wonder when no one on the team comes to Blake’s aid under the circumstances. Perhaps they’re sick of backing him up.
How personal should trash talking be? If you’re going to go as far as Avery did, you would think it would be in a little more important of a situation than one of eighty-two regular season games.
But where does this leave the average folk reading this column?
In rec sports and weekend warrior games, anything beyond mild ridicule to a team’s most aggressive and skilled players is probably going to be seen as too far. That’s not to say it shouldn’t be done. It is part of being competitive, and I daresay, one of the more enjoyable aspects of amateur sport – within limits.
First of all, it should be used as a reactive measure. Proactive trash talk in beer league isn’t going to make you any friends on the other team or your own. But if some smarmy dude is rubbing out players and being an ass, he’s fair game.
Secondly, at this level personal insults aren’t necessary. The best way to get into someone’s head is to comment on actions and stupid plays. Some old standby’s are people with bad haircuts, or commenting on the score board. If using the scoreboard, make sure you are at least somewhat responsible for your team’s good fortunes. No one likes an arrogant ankle skater.
I for one am intrigued by the art, and only wish that helmet mics in the NFL and CFL actually let us hear what is being said out on the field, instead of being used for witty team mate chit chat, and the noise of shoulder pad collisions. I bet soccer has by far the most personal trash talk, especially on the international stage where blind patriotism often gives a free pass to racism.
I could go on and on with this subject, but won’t until further inspired. If you’ve read up to this point, congratulations on making it through 850 words of drivel – loser.