Hockey Canada President Bob Nicholson bitched and moaned on Friday after Canada was eliminated by Russia at the 2011 World Hockey Championships earlier this week. Nicholson’s comments – saying the results are “totally unacceptable” – are fueled by the fact that Canada hasn’t won a single medal in the last two tournaments.
Nicholson also took a shot at several young Canadian players who declined playing in the tournament for reasons that were a “little lame.” Thanks, Bob. That was very insightful. Here’s another gem of a quote from Nicholson:
“This team was good enough to win, but with one or two more players (it could have been different). You know what, Hockey Canada and Canada have been pretty good to those players through the under-18, the juniors and an Olympics Games. I thought they would have thought about that before refusing to come this year.”
Is this guy freaking kidding me? That has to be the most ridiculous and obnoxious thing I’ve read in weeks. In my opinion, that’s worse than anything Jeremy Roenick said over the last few days. Let’s break down several reasons why Nicholson’s comments are so absurd:
This tournament is stupid
First of all, this tournament is stupid. How can there be a “World Hockey Championship” while some of the world’s best players are still playing in the Stanley Cup playoffs? The timing is completely off for a tournament of such ‘greatness.’ Secondly, what’s the point of the World Hockey Championships anyways? With international tournaments like the World Junior Hockey Championships, U-18/U-17, and a little thing called the Olympics, one has to wonder what this tournament is going for. The fact that many players don’t see the point in this tournament speaks volumes about it…
Nicholson believes the team was ‘one or two players away’ from significantly better results. Not exactly his words, but that was his point. Basically he’s suggesting two of the players on this year’s roster shouldn’t have been there. If I were one of the bubble national players, guys like Cal Clutterbuck or Mario Scalzo, I’d be pretty offended. Instead of whining about the players who didn’t make an effort to play in this tournament, how about supporting those who did. Real classy, Bob.
Let’s see your backbone, Bob
Although Nicholson isn’t playing the 2014 Olympics card to attract players to ‘B’ tournaments like this (just yet at least), it’s clear that he’s disappointed in some of the younger Canadian stars. Several names that stand out in my mind are players like Drew Doughty, Jonathan Toews, PK Subban, Ryan Getzlaf and others. Assuming NHL players play in the 2014 Olympics, do you really think Nicholson would stand up and say no to some of these young stars after they said no to him for “lame” reasons? He doesn’t have that kind of nerve or backbone. Players like those listed above are virtual shoe-ins for any national team, provided they are healthy. In other words, they have Bob and Hockey Canada by the balls. So in this case Bob, why say anything at all? It only highlights how little control you actually have.
Nicholson isn’t doing his country any favors with ridiculous comments like these. He’s making excuses for losing (hey, some of these other nations are missing key stars too) and sounds childish doing it. It’s embarrassing for Hockey Canada and Canadian hockey fans. Please shut up, Bob. It’s for everyone’s own good.
Stay classy, Bob Nicholson. For once, try to show some tact.
P.S – Unrelated: RIP Derek Boogaard.