The King of Hockey Criticized For His Magnificent Mansion
Connor McDavid isn't criticism-proof after all. Marchand chirping again. Rangers rising. Devils jersey$. Reviewing the puck over the glass rule.
It turns out that Connor McDavid isn't criticism-proof after all. But
his apparent weakness has nothing to do with hockey, or his character, for that matter. It's all about architecture. Specifically, the mansion he had designed and built -- with his lady friend's assistance -- in a posh section of Edmonton.
So far, there's nothing wrong with that. After all, a super-rich, super-duper hockey player shouldn't be ripped because the house he lives in does no one any harm. That part is beyond question.
Ah, but what's most definitely questionable was McDavid's decision to invite the magazine, Architectural Digest, to send a reporter and photographer over to case the joint.
The Digest's reporter not only did a once-over-lightly after which readers responded not so politely. By having his three-story palace-of-puckdom on display, Mister McD opened up a can of criticism.
"After seeing it (the mansion), I no longer wish to be rich," offered one critic.
Granted, there's a lot of white throughout the structure which, by the way, reportedly was designed by Connor's gal-pal Lauren Kyle.
"What did colors do to offend these two?" snapped another viewer who figured a bit more of blue, black, red, fuschia, purple and orange might have added a bit of color to the chateau.
Meanwhile, His Majesty of "Insiders," Elliotte Friedman, felt obliged to defend McD. "I'm disappointed," wrote Mister Insider, that folks poked fun at Connor's conception of a castle.
Not that Lauren is livid over the attention. Quite the contrary. After all, how often does an NHL star get his palace into an architectural publication?
Certainly not Mitch Marner, nor Artemi Panarin and doubtful for Sidney Crosby.
Meanwhile, Mister McD pointed out the many areas in which he can work out. That even includes a basketball court. For toasting his latest hat trick, Lauren designed a wine cellar which some day may be stocked with Stanley Cup champagne. Hey, you never know.
As a matter of fact, I liked Ms. Kyle's comment about her pal's mini-mansion:
"I guess this will be the designated team party house!"
HEADLINE: MARCHAND -- KING OF THE CHIRPER-KIBITZERS
THE JIVE: It's no fun playing against Brad Marchand. He beats you with his skill and antagonizes with his carping although some call it oldtime
"chirping." Usually, Brad's verbal velocity is out of earshot and tv microphones. But not always.
A reaction to Marchand's sharp tongue usually is limited to his target's comeback. Occasionally, though, Brad will so successfully infuriate a foe that -- well -- a normally calm guy will toss his glove at the Bruin's head.
That gem of a comedic act was available last Saturday in Boston. Marchand's target was Rangers ace Artemi Panarin. Standing at the end of the Bruins' bench -- closest to the Rangers pews -- Brad blabbed and blabbed and finally, The Bread Man pulled off his gauntlet and fired the glove at Marchand's head.
With consummate ease, the Bruin deflected the glove and then watched in high glee as the agitated Ranger was escorted to a more calming atmosphere. Actually the scene did no harm to anyone. Brad won the verbal tussle but New York won the game, rallying after Panarin's third period goal!
HEADLINE: TIME TO TAKE THE RANGERS MORE SERIOUSLY
THE JIVE: Not to brag, but I said at training camp and with the opening game, that the Rangers were a lot better than critics imagined. A lot better.
The fact that Gerard Gallant's gang can skate on to Boston ice and put away the Bruins, as they did last Friday, says something about the Blueshirts strength in the Metro Division. (And the New Yorkers don't even have a captain.) Who cares? They've got one of the best goalies in the league -- Igor "The Great" Shesterkin -- and a solid roster up and down the line.
HEADLINE: QUICK AND EASY DOES IT
THE JIVE: 1. The Hockey News header was simple enough: What Should The Sharks Do With Evander Kane? The Maven's reply is equally simple: Trade him!
2. What should the latest Covid outbreak tell Donald Fehr of the NHLPA? Also, simple: Forget about NHLers going to the Olympics!
3. What do we say to Sharks g.m. Doug Wilson who took a medical leave of absence? Still simple: GET WELL SOON!
4. Who could do best without the other, McDavid or Draisaitl? Easy: McD!
HEADLINE: DEVILS NEW UNIFORM HAS A $ SIDEBAR
THE JIVE: After New Jersey's favorite major league team unveiled its new, mostly-black uniform a small group of fans wondered why JERSEY was dominant in the front of the jersey.
JERSEY on a jersey didn't quite make sense to some until a creative type within the organization then designed a cap with the word CAP on its front. My man in the Garden State, George Falkowski, reports that the CAP cap sold out faster than you can say, "Now, that's marketing!"
Ah, but what do the Devils do for an encore? Gotta be PANTS for pants, right?
HEADLINE: PUCK OVER GLASS: VIDEO REVIEW COULD RESTORE LOGIC TO DUMB RULE
THE JIVE: Our man in Toronto, Rob Del Mundo, is a vocal opponent of the automatic delay of game penalty for ‘puck over glass’, and thinks video review would help enforce the rule more appropriately.
During Friday night’s matchup between the Leafs and Sharks at SAP Center, San Jose defender Erik Karlsson got away with what should have been, by the letter of the existing rule, a delay of game penalty. The two-time Norris Trophy winner fired the puck over the glass while clearing the San Jose zone, yet none of the on-ice officials detected that rubber disc was not deflected as it left the playing surface.
Veteran play-by-play man Chris Cuthbert opined that it’s the type of call that should be subject to video review. This columnist agrees, but not for the same reasons that the broadcaster is offering.
Using Cuthbert’s reasoning, video review could easily be applied to determine whether the puck went straight out of the rink, in other words – a technological enforcement of the existing edict.
But, why not instead use replay to validate the spirit of the rule, instead of the letter of the rule? Or to put it simply, why not implement video replay to help subjectively determine whether a player deliberately delayed the game by shooting the puck over the glass, in lieu of the assessment of an automatic penalty?
Rule 63.2 was amended as the league came out of the season-long 2005 lockout. In addition to obvious such infractions, it stated “When any player shoots or bats (using his hand or his stick) the puck directly (non-deflected) out of the playing surface from his defending zone, except where there is no glass, a penalty shall be assessed for delaying the game.”
It's the worst rule in all of professional sports in terms of egregiously and unfairly punishing the offending team. The overwhelming majority of ‘puck over glass’ penalties occur as a result of a defending player accidentally overshooting the puck – as was the case with Karlsson – or, even worse, a player having a natural reflex to bat at a loose puck that is eventually, inadvertently, cleared over the boards.
Those are not the type of plays that warrant a two-minute penalty.
Any clear violation of the delay of game rule should of course be appropriately sanctioned. In the first period of the same Leafs-Sharks contest, Toronto goaltender Joseph Woll panicked under the duress of two attacking San Jose players and thwarted a scoring chance by firing the puck into the stands. Such plays clearly deserve to have the offending team play shorthanded.
Yes, use video review to help confirm deliberate, intentional stoppages. But we don’t need any Abraham Zapruder-like investigations to determine whether the puck grazed the glass by a millimeter, or whether it deflected off a stick before going out of play.
Using available technology may have helped Vegas in the 2020 playoffs after defenseman Zach Whitecloud accidentally took a puck over glass penalty in overtime while being pursued by Dallas forward Andrew Cogliano. The Stars scored on the ensuing power play, eliminating the Golden Knights from the post-season.
Retired referee Paul Stewart, who officiated over 1,000 games appropriately tweeted after the debacle "I think it's a terrible rule in that it takes the judgement away from the officials. Deliberate should be a penalty. Late 3rd period in Sept (with) bad ice, we should be able to use judgement."
Historically the NHL has been able to adjust its rulebook to reflect the spirit of the game. The farcical “toe in the crease” experiment that disallowed far too many legitimate goals was shelved in the late 90s. More recently, the offside rule has been amended to allow for play to continue as long as the offensive player’s off-ice skate has not broken the plane of the blue line.
It’s high time for the league to step up and stop over-penalizing pucks out of play. The technology is in place, it just has to be used properly.
While Rob's essay has an undeniable logic to it, I happen to disagree on a plain, old, hockey theory.
I favor the rule exactly as it is to KEEP IT SIMPLE!