Weekend Roundup

I will admit that not only have I curled before, but I enjoyed it.

There, I said it.

Now, I can also say, that only in Canada would an extra end of curling lead to a delay in an entirely audience driven hockey game. I am fairly certain that NBC and or ABC (maybe both) tuned away from an NHL playoff game for one of horse racing’s triple crown events. I can’t speak to other young kids, but little TSM was pretty disappointed when the CBC joined the All Star Game and there were no player introductions or national anthems.

I am going under the knife for my knee again in the morning so here are some other thoughts from an otherwise dull weekend:

Best Toronto article I read all weekend was from the Globe and Mail:

“But relationships run their course. Googly eyes give way to dollar signs; all those good times turn into what do you mean we missed the playoffs again?

And so the Raptors and Colangelo are entering into a more pragmatic stage in their relationship, with the two-time executive of the year’s five-year, $20-million (all currency U.S.) contract set to expire and the Raptors headed for the draft lottery for the third straight season.”

Micheal Grange’s column about the status of Bryan Colangelo is good reading. People forget that when the Maple Leafs were looking to replace JFJ, the call from many was to try to find hockey’s version of Colangelo. My, how times change.

“Insiders expect the situation to come to a head in mid-February at the next scheduled meeting of the MLSE board.

There are rumours that Colangelo, well-ensconced in Toronto and determined to reboot a club that has floundered under his watch, is seeking a five-year deal and no less than what he’s paid now; terms that some in the ownership group might find steep given the pay-for-performance ethos that permeates the executive suite of the majority owner, the Ontario Teachers Pension Plan.”

I, for one can’t believe this will be dragged on all that long. I personally think the parties know what the other brings and, despite the poor performance on the court, they want each other a whole lot.

“I haven’t talked to anyone about my contract,” he said Friday. “Anyone who says I have is talking BS. I’m not looking for the door right now; I love being here. My focus is on moving forward.”

He may get his chance, if not his price. Those reading the tea leaves inside the MLSE boardroom describe a scene where practicality has replaced passion.

“They know he’s not the Messiah they thought he was five years ago,” said one source. “But they’re also realizing no one is. If there was a Messiah, they’d hire him. “

See, I’m thinking he gets the job and the money. I ask this rhetorically, but, who the hell else are they going to hire to do the job that’s going to do so much better?

A twitter follower properly notified me of a previous article about Colangelo in the NY Post:

“Bryan Colangelo is on the final year of his contract as Raptors president and someone who used to work for the franchise (no, not Isiah Thomas, no, not Butch Carter, no, aw, forget it) claims he’s in danger of being released when it expires June 30 or possibly months earlier.”

Yeah, so I am just not seeing that happen – at all.

“I know the perception of the staff internally is that Bryan is going to be extended before Richard Peddie steps down at CEO of Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment,” e-mailed someone in prime position to confirm or deny such an allegation. “I believe Richard 100% when he says publicly he’s committed to getting an extension done with Bryan.

With plausible rumors of a change in majority ownership swirling, and with Richard participating in the selection of his own replacement (he announced his resignation a couple months ago, effective Dec. 31 this year), I believe the last thing he wants to do is to conduct a search for B.C’s replacement.

Richard is not bluffing when he gives his full support to Bryan–so, if a change were to get made it would be entirely the result of ownership’s decision, and ownership really likes Bryan. In fact, I believe the ownership/management situation gives B.C. considerable leverage in negotiating an extension.”

Doesn’t that sound one hell of a lot more plausible than any story of Colangelo not returning? Do you think that the person who replaces Peddie will consider himself saddled with Colangelo as GM of the Raptors? That just doesn’t smell right. The time for Colangelo to get his deal done is now, with Peddie still around.

The worst story of the weekend, well that went to our old friend Gary Loewen, no link sorry, but wow what a waste to two pages of paper.

Under the heading of did he really write that, or wow, that was quick:

“When it comes to Phoenix, Bettman’s issued more tainted denials than John Edwards. As a result, it’s hard to accept anything said about the team from the NHL head office. And judging from Bettman’s own descriptions this weekend, the public bond issue has tubes and wires keeping it alive.

But near-dead isn’t dead. There’s a possible private bond process to come. Whatever their track record, the NHL and prospective owner Matthew Hulsizer are still relevant to the story till the fat lady croons in Glendale. Then we can judge their candour and McCown’s soothsaying.”

So, last week McCown got nailed by the Globe media writer, and after McCown responded with the “just because the NHL says it doesn’t mean it’s true line”, the Globe writer basically turtles? Wow, McCown is clearly more influential than I thought.

The NY Post article on Bryan Colangelo is here

Michael Grange’s article is here

The latest from the Globe on the sports media world is here

About the Author