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I'm tired of this.

Published on January 26th 2014

  • 1COMMENTS

I have a few axes to grind with Edmontonians. I'm just going to jump right into it.

1) Stop throwing your jerseys on the ice. It was controversial and iconic when the first person did it. I didn't necessarily agree with it, but the original "jersey-thrower" most definitely made a statement. You, jersey-thrower number two? You're unoriginal. You're not cute. This is a done circus.

You may not think that the players on the ice are doing justice to you, the high paying, heroin-beer swigging tier-two fan, but I can assure you that you are doing a great injustice to this city and the legacy that was built by those who donned that sweater before you or any of the players of the game today. Show some respect. If you feel the overwhelming urge to toss your jersey, toss it and your tickets in the direction of an underprivileged child who would kill to see their first NHL game, win or loss. 

2) Stop with the billboards, the stickers, the Facebook groups. Do you honestly think that sacking the President of Hockey Operations will make this team stronger on the back end? Will a new face in that corner office magically morph Jeff Petry into a number one defenseman? Will it magically bring back 1990 Grant Fuhr? No. It most certainly won't. You could have Kevin Lowe, Glen Sather, Rob Ford or my great aunt in that office and it still would not change the fact that this team has seriously glaring holes that cannot be fixed with bandaid solutions.

I'm not telling you that you have to like Kevin Lowe. Not even a little bit. You can disagree with his decisions, current and past if you'd like. You can suggest that a cleaning house would be a welcome change for this organization. It might be, but Lowe's done some great things for this organization and the game of hockey over the years and he's one of the most knowledgable in the industry. It's not like he's a rookie defenseman that's in over his head and we need a Drew Doughty. He is a Drew Doughty in his own right.

Of course, you're certainly not wrong when you bring up shortcomings in his tenure with the team in a management position, but please, to quote Dustin Nielson of TSN 1260, figure it out. If a Facebook campaign can't oust a crack-smoking elected public official, it certainly won't remove an executive member of a privately run organization. There's no threshold of "likes" that obligates someone to vacate their title.

3) Stop telling Craig MacTavish to make a move and bring us a defenseman. Do you think the man has an IQ of 40? I'm pretty sure he's aware of what we need. I have some iota of faith in his ability - I think he's got a pretty decent resume compared to you and I when it comes to making trades, doing deals and just having general hockey sense. He's not a magician. He cannot make something from nothing.

Highlights of Edmonton include: an old arena in the middle of a rough area of town, complete with -50 winters and a fanbase that's "passionate" enough to call for the heads of members of the organization with billboards and campaigns. On top of it all, this is a team that's all but mathematically eliminated from the playoffs and most definitely isn't a sure bet for next year. If Craig MacTavish can convince a top-pairing, free agent defenseman to join this organization at the deadline, he deserves to be sainted.

I'm sure I've now offended a good chunk of my readership, but I'm pissed. Yeah, I wish we were winning hockey games. I wish I had something better to cheer for, but I know where to draw the line. The price of a ticket and a beer does not entitle me to make a fool of myself and the city and team that I love. Take a step back and remember why we love this great game and that it's just that: a game.  

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Kady HobbinsPuckrant Contributor

Writer ForEdmonton Oilers

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