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Your team won the Stanley Cup last, when?

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Whether you are a Flames, Oilers, Canucks, Jets, Senators, Habs or dare we say Leafs fan, it has been a tough slug. Last time any Canadian team to win anything were the Canadiens, and that was in 1993, which is more than 20 years ago, if you care to do the math.

We used to blame the lack of success on the weak Canadian dollar, the size of the Canadian markets and so on. None of these conditions are present and still no Canadian NHL franchise has won the cup recently. Yes the Flames in 03-04 came close, so did the Oilers, Senators and the Canucks, but close does not count, does it?

So what is it that is preventing our dearly beloved NHL teams from lifting Lord Stanley’s mug in June? Hockey used to be Canada’s game. Others are catching up and surpassing not only in the NHL, but on the world stage as well.

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Say I gave you a BILLION dollars … what would you do?

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The Oracle of Omaha, a.k.a Warren Buffet will give you 1 billion greenbacks, all you have to do is put together the perfect March Madness bracket. What exactly would be the odds of that?

According to Joe Weisenthal, of Business Insider – “The odds of a perfect bracket being picked is 1 in 9.2 quintillion. A quintillion is a billion billion. So everyone on earth could fill out millions of brackets each, and there probably wouldn’t be anyone to hit the prize.

Stranger things have happened, lets assume for a minute there is someone that does by the luck of the draw put a perfect bracket together. Lets say it is you. What would you do with a billion and can anyone really comprehend how much money that is?

As it happens to be, Warren, is worth 58B and change. This means he would be giving away 1.7% of his wealth to you. Lets put this in perspective, if you make 60K/year, it would represent $1,020. Not to mention that the prize money would be insured anyway, so Warren won’t have to pay a dime out of his pocket.

In other words, this is pocket change for Mr. Buffet but the stunt is priceless, isn’t it?

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Oiler’s owner throws in towel, writes letter to fans

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With more than 30 games to go, Daryl Katz has thrown in the towel. In an open letter to Oiler fans on the team’s website Katz wrote “I know this will almost certainly be the eighth consecutive year since we made the playoffs”.

The good news apparently, the rebuild did not start till they drafted Hall 4 years ago. The previous 4 years were merely, mediocrity.

Katz is “all in” with Lowe and MacTavish at the helm, he asks for patience from Oiler fans. “If we’re going to rebuild, we want to do it right and we only want to do it once” says Katz. The mantra is, stay the course, do not press the panic button. Do you believe that the Oilers are on the right path and that they will be successful in year X down the road once the oil change is complete?

Katz also defended Lowe, saying that Lowe is god’s gift to hockey because “He is consistently chosen, year after year, to play a leadership role with Hockey Canada”. Flash news, Hockey Canada hasn’t done much in the last few years since the Olympics.

So, the question is, do you believe that doing more of the same with the same people will get your team success at some point in the near future (not like the Leafs near, distant, future of winning the cup in 3067)?

Let’s hear it.

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Why did Hartley poke the bear, and let the fallout ensue on Saturday?

No one yet has asked the question, why did Bob Hartley do it? Why did he poke the bear?

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Let’s consider the collective mindset of the Flames organization. Pugnacity and truculence are now the key words, which lead one to believe these words may now define the identity of the team. An identity, any identity is better than no identity, isn’t it? When you are reduced in skill, the default is to step up the violence. The Broadstreet Bullies were not the most talented team, but they sure were the meanest and most violent.

On the other hand the Canucks were on the receiving end last time, courtesy of Brian McGrattan’s elbow to Andrew Alberts’ head. For which by the way there was no supplementary discipline from the NHL. Grats got a 5 minute major for elbowing and Alberts was sent to the sidelines with a concussion.

Perhaps it much simpler than that, perhaps, Mr. Hartley thought retaliation from the Canucks was due, for previous indiscretions, and that is why he started his 4th line of tough guys on the road, which then left no other choice for Torts.

At any rate, violence begets violence. Torts lost his mind, Hartley turtled. He surely did not expect the Tortorcano to erupt so abruptly and violently, spilling into his own dressing room.

And now for the fallout. The NHL clearly does not want to go back to the days of the Broadstreet Bullies, therefore it must send a message to everyone watching and the message is, NHL is a family brand. The degree of violence displayed on Saturday by both teams can not and will not be tolerated.

Tortorcano got a 15 day (6 game) suspension, and Harltey, fined 25K. If Hartley did nothing wrong, the NHL would not have fined him. Clearly, in the eyes of the NHL, there was intent to instigate and incite violence by the Flames coach. The bottom line, the NHL is saying, this is not who we are (or at least this is not who we want to be seen as).

Did both coaches deserve what they got? Not enough? Share your thoughts.