Hey Ron Lose The Nicknames


Just when I was getting to warm up to Ron Wilson, thanks to two personal pieces on the coach, he speaks to the media in the manner that for some odd reason makes my skin crawl:

“That was a pretty hard hit Millsy took there,” said Wilson, who has coached Miller internationally with Team USA.”

Is that how grandpa Wilson wants his grandkids to be talking? Millsy? What is this grade 3??

“I wouldn’t ever say that what Brian Gionta did with Reims was deliberate, but he got hit really hard,”

Reims? I know who the hell he means, I just can’t take what he says seriously when he uses nicknames. He’s a head coach of a professional sports team. A team that, I am pretty sure makes his players dress the part when they are on the road. If they do that, why not have the coach use actual names?

I’m a parent, so I kind of understand how painful it can be to be asked the same question over and over again. However, was this gem by Wilson really necessary?

“Wilson on who will start in goal Tuesday: “A goalie. He’ll be wearing two pads. A mask. Probably with a Leafs logo on it. How’s that?”

That’s a smartass answer that one respects. Is it really that hard to say, “no comment” or “none of your business”?

I’m not trying to be petty. I just wish our coach was a little more professional. I’m sure I am the only one who feels this way, but I’d take him a lot more seriously if he did.

No sooner do I give TSN Radio props for the Dan Patrick show do they preempt it for, extended coverage of the hockey hall of fame inductions. Ughhhhhh. I know, this is a hockey market, but really, all day coverage on the hall of fame? Yes they had tv rights, but still, putting the afternoon show there alone would have sufficed. If there was a breaking story I could understand. Wall to wall coverage of the hall induction, I don’t.

You know what’s missing from this Leafs season? Meaningful work from Howard Berger. The odd article from the National Post doesn’t cut it.

I don’t know call me crazy, but a sentence that begins with words like, “I only horsed around with little boys in the shower” can NEVER end well.

Damien Cox tells us it’s put up or shut up time for the Coyotes. Whatever happened to the guys who were trying to raise enough money to buy the team, $1 at a time?

Happy Tuesday.


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Ami Angelwings
November 15, 2011 2:15 am

Hockey nicknames are so fratboyish… or teenageish.. or w/e age is when ppl think taking off the last few letters of a name = nickname -_-

Also Wilson’s schtick is getting pretty tiring -_- He’s not funny… he’s not even mean… he just sounds like an internet troll…

At least he should use some smileys xD

Another Steve
Another Steve
November 15, 2011 4:57 am

“What is this grade 3??” Yes, it is, to a certain extent – this is sports, remember: we aren’t talking about things that are significant. Lighten up.

[Last year I was talking to a guy who works in a very stressful job. Like most people, for light conversation we turned to the subject of sports. When I mentioned the story that Wilson told about how someone screamed at him while he was on his cell-phone, this fellow turned red as said that Wilson is an ass and doesn’t deserve any human respect. Needless to say, this person probably needs/needed some help/therapy, which is likely true of a lot of the Wilson-haters out there. As Paul Maurice once said (to paraphrase) – go have a cup of tea.]

“I’m not trying to be petty.” Sorry to say this, but most comments about Wilson do sound petty, including the ones here. You don’t like his humour – fine. Personally, I get a kick out of someone who can so consistently piss people off with his humour. To me – that’s comedy.

With verbal interaction it is often hard to spot irony. There are no such things as verbal emoticons (many of which – other than happy-faces – are unintelligible to most people anyway…..hint…hint). Wilson has his own form of irony. I find it amusing. So, I think, the choice is either to enjoy it, or to learn to bear it.

Lighten up. From your posts I gather that you are a lawyer. In a court of law you don’t talk that way to people (with nick-names). I am a prof – to my colleagues, in formal situations, I don’t talk that way either. But, frankly, sometimes – in class – to reach the students I will use some cute language in an effort to make the stuff less boring. That’s all Wilson is doing: in his own way, he is having fun. We might as well enjoy it, for we aren’t going to change him.

I would have a problem if Peter Mansbridge referred to our PM as “Harps,” mind you; but, again, that’s serious stuff.

Brian K
Brian K
November 15, 2011 7:29 am

I don’t know if using nicknames implies unprofessionalism. Why don’t you ask Richie Rich what he thinks?

November 15, 2011 9:28 am

I have to agree, wholeheartedly, with TSM. Always have found hockey players who insist on referring to another player with a nickname to be immature and far too “jockish” for me.

In the dressing room and on the ice – that’s fine. In an interview? It just makes their never-ending stock answers all the more intolerable.

November 15, 2011 9:47 am

“So, I think, the choice is either to enjoy it, or to learn to bear it.” It is not a binary choice. I have tuned out when it comes to the Leafs and could care less what they have to say. The last time I watched more than a period of a Leafs game was last year when I was given platinum tickets to a game which was a brutal experience!

They are a tedious lot. I find Wilson’s constant condescension routinely crosses over into contempt, which the media is all too ready to give back. Burke’s “truculent and abrasive” attitude readily translates into the bully. The steadfast refusal of the organization to effectively answer questions on the status of players and their injuries results in reporters talking to family members to get answers.

It is only my opinion in which I am probably alone but I see the blue and white disease has shifted from players to management. I can find no other explanation in how they interact with the media which is the conduit to the majority of their fans. This sense of entitlement where it matters not how they relate to their fan base as they will either enjoy it or learn to bear it. They will keep showing up, buying merchandise and watching on TV. As I said at the start, I for one have chosen to tune out.

As for the nicknames, well TSM not sure you can take the high road on that one …

mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
November 15, 2011 3:40 pm

half of the fun of the internet is coming up with sarcastic nicknames for people:

– Steven “the Torch Bearer” Brunt
– Damian “the Grim Reaper” Cox
– Greg “8 Mile” Brady
– Son of Hayes

i don’t care about players and coaches using nicknames, but it’s especially unprofessional when media members use them to refer to their guests. We get it: you golf and lunch and cottage together. that doesn’t mean you should’t at least try to sound objective.

design guy Paul
design guy Paul
November 15, 2011 4:20 pm

Yes I agree that it is silly that some guys seem to think it necessary to always call a player by a nickname which is usually shortening his surname and adding “sey” or “es”.

Using nicknames at all times seems that it is a requirement of employment for the Maple Leafs. To that note I found it hilarious the first few times that Brian Burke talked with Bob McCown on air and kept referring to Bob as “Mac”. No one except Burke called Bob that and clearly Bob found it strange and ackward.

I do find it weird as well when reporters refer to players and management by nicknames when they write what is supposed to be impartial and unbiased. Case in point when Damian Cox refers to Brian Burke as “Burkie”, to me just lessens Cox’s credibility even more than he does himself with some of the ludicrous things he says and writes. Cox is a true Burke cheerleader so I guess he feels it is okay to go with Burkie.

November 15, 2011 4:47 pm

@BrianK that was a homerun, sir!

Ami Angelwings
November 15, 2011 7:07 pm

I don’t mind nicknames, I just wish they’d be creative. xD

Torch Bearer is creative. “Bruntsy” is not.

“8 mile” is creative.. “Brades” is not

Bobcat is creative and fun, “Mac” (I dunno what else you could do with McCown… McCowsy?) isn’t -__-

Also, how many Shannys are there? I’m never sure if they’re referring to Shannon or Shanahan when they say “Shanny” -_-

November 16, 2011 10:49 am

@ Design Guy Paul.

It might be just me but I have never seen or heard Damian Cox refer to Brian Burke as “Burkie”.

If so, it was in jest.

November 16, 2011 12:34 pm

Right on Brian K.

November 16, 2011 12:37 pm

Oh, by the way, I agree with TSM and Brian K.

November 16, 2011 7:49 pm

Brian K. ..perfectly said. Both are really, really annoying…never got where “Richie Rich” came from. Please stop…. Same with “Abe Simpson” – I always thought he meant Craig Simpson — and “Richie Rich” was Richard Peddie. I guess that makes me look pretty stupid…

November 16, 2011 7:56 pm

I never found Howard Berger’s reports to be meaningful. I think he overstayed his welcome…that job covering the Leafs is for a cub reporter to cut his teeth, then move onward and upward. If I were Wilson, I would be sour on the media just because of Howard. He did it with Quinn too…

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