On Stanley Cup Final coverage and the problem of bias

I can actually pinpoint the exact moment I realized that objectivity in sports journalism was a crock: it happened at the 2009 Super Bowl, a classic between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Arizona Cardinals. In the days leading up to it, Larry Fitzgerald Sr., the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder reporter that had covered something like 28 consecutive Super Bowls, came under fire for the supposed conflict of interests the game posed to him: his son, Larry Fitzgerald Jr., was the star receiver for the Cardinals.

Could he remain objective? Debate raged. Some columns deified the elder Fitzgerald, painting him as a paragon of professionalism that could no doubt maintain balance, while others prematurely slandered Fitzgerald as a heinously loving father.

If you watched that match, you might remember that Fitzgerald the receiver put in a star performance, reeling in two huge touchdowns. You might also remember the telecast’s obsession with shots of the father in the press box every time his son did anything of merit. There he sat, staring blankly, vacant and unimpressed, careful not to let on how proud he was.

It was ridiculous. Anybody that thought Larry Fitzgerald Sr. wasn’t quietly cheering for his son to win the Super Bowl is a fool, and the silly act he was forced to put on for the cameras and media is proof that the field of sports journalism, too, has its fools.

I would have respected Fitzgerald Sr. all the more had he come right out, admitted the bias, and then remained conscious of it as he wrote. Of course, I understand why he was reticent: objectivity to sports journalists is like faith to Christians — if it even appears to waver, you can go straight to Hell. Fitzgerald would have had his press pass torn up had he been so damnably honest.

In the field of sports journalism, objectivity seems held in higher regard than anywhere else, perhaps because, without it, it’s easy to brand sportswriters as glorified fans, a label that would severely diminish the value of their work. As a result, claiming there’s a bias in sports journalism has become a little like accusing the government of a conspiracy: in an effort to protect the credibility of the institution, we turn a blind eye to obvious instances of duplicity and discredit the individual speaking out.

The moment someone suggests a conspiracy in government, he or she is branded a nutcase; the moment someone suggests a bias in sports journalism, he or she is branded a homer, the scarlet letter of sports writing.

But make no mistake: at the cost of sounding like a homer (which I can handle, as a Canucks blogger) there is a bias, and we’ve seen it in the laughably anti-Canucks national coverage of this year’s Stanley Cup Final. As the big media has descended on Vancouver, fans have been subjected to writing from individuals who rarely cover this team, don’t particularly like this team, and would rather this team didn’t win. These writers have attacked the Canucks incessantly, misquoted players, called them names, and gleefully jumped on every opportunity to paint the team in a negative light. Then, they’ve had the nerve to dishonestly claim their one-sided coverage is fair and balanced, and insulted anyone that’s tried to say otherwise.

For fans of this team, it’s been infuriating.

Some in the media, too, are taking notice. Anyone following Jason Botchford’s Twitter account can see that it’s driving the Canucks’ beat reporter absolutely mad.

Unfortunately, Vancouver’s been screaming bias for so long that, this time around, nobody’s listening. You’ve no doubt heard of the East Coast Bias, the Toronto swamp monster that feeds on the tears of Western Canada (or at least that’s how British Columbians describe it). When Toronto comes to town and puck drop gets moved up to accommodate their massive audience share, we cry bias. Heck, when any Vancouver game time is changed to allow the entire nation to watch at a reasonable hour, we cry bias.

It’s silly. The CBC and the NHL aren’t out to screw the Canucks. They’re out to make money, and maximizing viewership tends to work better than allowing their marquee event to end well past over half the nation’s bedtimes. Accomodating time zones is tricky business. It’s the same reason the games in Boston are beginning an hour later than they usually do. That’s for us.

I’m more than willing to deny a bias that doesn’t exist, and the East Coast bias is a myth.

That said, the journalistic bias against the Canucks has been clear as day. Consider, for example, the writing about the Sedins, whose manhood has been questioned for their lack of production in the Final. Anyone with an ounce of sense can see that their best series came against a team that didn’t have a dedicated shutdown pairing (San Jose), and they’ve had a tougher time against teams with Norris-Calibre defensemen that aggressively focus on shutting them down (Chicago, Nashville, Boston).

However, instead of telling this story, we’ve been subjected to a “limp-wristed Euros” narrative that smacks of embarrassing prejudice.

When was the last time someone suggested that Sidney Crosby or Jonathan Toews was less of a man for their relative lack of production in their respective Finals? In 2009, Crosby went minus-3 with a goal and two assists.  In 2010, despite going minus-5 with no goals and three assists, Toews won the Conn Smythe. I’m sure their Canadian citizenship had nothing to do with their generous coverage.

In these cases, credit was given to the opposing defenders who shut down elite scoring threats. The Sedins, meanwhile, simply aren’t man enough. They’re hacked, slashed and impeded constantly, but any time they go down, they’re sissy divers, a narrative that stinks of xenophobia over an ethnocentric worry that Europeans have come to ruin the Canadian game. Chris Nilan claimed their “balls shrivel up when they’re on the road”, Joe Haggerty called them “Hansel and Gretel”,  Mike Milbury called them “Thelma and Louise,” and a bevy of other sportswriters and fans have stuck with the much less innovative Sedin “sisters”.

Why, exactly, is it considered acceptable — professionally acceptable, even — to mock two men by comparing them to a minority group in hockey, anyway? What’s next? The Sedins play like blacks, jews, or gays?

This line of criticism is, in and of itself, childish and sexist. It’s 2011 and there are women in the Hockey Hall of Fame. If the Sedins actually were women, people might be a little more impressed with their point per game pace over the last five years, their back-to-back Art Ross trophies, their potentially back-to-back Hart trophies, or the fact that they’ve led their hockey team to the Stanley Cup Final in their first year as team leaders. As it stands, however, these accomplishments aren’t enough to escape the criticism that they’re actually women on skates — and that there’s something inherently wrong with that.

Roberto Luongo, too, has seen plenty of unfair coverage. After two consecutive winning performances in which he “outplayed” Tim Thomas, the talk was about how he was hardly challenged. Thomas, meanwhile, was already generating Conn Smythe trophy buzz in losing efforts. Then, after the two games in Boston, where Thomas, too, was “hardly challenged”, the Bruins’ netminder was again hailed as the reason his team was back in the series, even though the 12 goals his skaters registered might have had something to do with it.

Luongo, meanwhile, had played himself out of the running for the Conn Smythe, despite the fact that his 14 goals against in this series are still five less than Tim Thomas allowed in the seven-game Eastern Conference final. But no matter.

Questions raged about whether or not Luongo should start game 5, while the media took the opportunity to mock him for Vancouver fans cheering as he was pulled from game 4.

At first, I bristled at this report; it’s hard to defend a fanbase that would do that. Then, after looking again, I realized that it was CBC sports who reported it, the same network that quick-cuts to Cory Schneider any time they don’t like the goal Luongo let in, and it was CBC sports who quick-cut to Rogers Arena at the exact moment Luongo was getting pulled. Then, knowing full well the fans in the building cheer and wave towels whenever they’re on, they painted it as a fan betrayal of their goaltender. They manufactured that story, then “objectively” brought it to the public like a modern day William Randolph Hearst.

In short, the coverage of Tim Thomas has been kind. The coverage of Roberto Luongo has been mean-spirited and dishonest.

Then there’s Alex Burrows, who bit Patrice Bergeron in a scrum and has therefore earned a reputation as one of the most classless, disgraceful players in the history of hockey. This despite the admission of many hockey players that they’ve bitten a guy in the same situation. Justin Bourne said he bit a guy once, after telling the guy repeatedly to get his fingers out of his face. Don Cherry said he bit a guy once. Boston’s Marc Savard bit a guy once. No one’s talking about that.

Maxim Lapierre is classless too, because he waved a finger in Bergeron’s face. However, Mark Recchi and Milan Lucic, who tried to stuff their fingers in Lapierre and Burrows’s respective mouths in game 3 remain perfect gentlemen.

Looks to me like everybody acted pretty stupid there. Heck, both teams have been guilty of dirty play at times over this series. But the ongoing narrative that casts the Canucks as classless baddies and the Bruins as classy goodies stinks of one-sided reporting.

Lapierre’s sell job on the Zdeno Chara spear wasn’t his finest moment, but it certainly didn’t warrant Scott Burnside’s decision to mock him after the game, did it? “You looked like you were mortally wounded after the Chara spear,” Burnside said. “I wondered how you were able to carry on after that.” Burnside calling Lapierre classless after a question like that seems hypocritical, no?

Speaking of Zdeno Chara, he ran a guy into a stanchion and broke his neck this season, but that was an accident from a classy player with no history of violence. Meanwhile, Aaron Rome concussed Nathan Horton in an open-ice hit. That was a willful intent to injure.

In truth, it looked to me like both plays were accidental, but the decision to forgive one and use the other as proof an entire team is dirty seems like the conscious choice of a journalist, don’t you? There was little outrage when Jamie McGinn concussed Rome in the series prior. Why’s that? Because nobody was looking for evidence that would confirm a bias against the Sharks.

Class has been big topic of this Final. Barry Rozner said the Canucks’ names on the Stanley Cup would be a disgrace. Right. Can an organization that donated $5 million to the BC Children’s Hospital and employs two players who privately donated another $1.5 million really be that classless? Of course, it’s hard to drop a paragraph about the Sedins’ charitable contributions into an article about how they don’t have testicles. Heck, class is pretty subjective. How the Chicago Blackhawks, a team that mocks injured players, employs a kid that beat up a cab driver and a guy that broke Ryan Kesler’s nose on an intentional headshot nobody seemed to care about can be called a classy Cup winner — while the Canucks are the disgrace of the league — is beyond me.

If you’re not seeing the bias here, something is wrong. It’s the same bias fans have when they see their own teams’ players as squeaky clean protagonists and the opponents as antagonizing marauders, out to win by breaking the rules. The only difference is it’s being spewed from the mouths of those that allege no allegiance.

Heck, a number of sports journalists have even admitted a preference, though they’ve disguised personal diatribes about how much they don’t like Vancouver as objective essays on how the Canucks “aren’t Canada’s team.” How, exactly, does one person speak for Canada? Sounds subjective to me. And when the supporting evidence is entirely derived from personal opinions and attacks on players the writer dislikes, it’s a leap to claim it’s a fair and balanced report.

Truth is, I wouldn’t mind coverage like this if we weren’t being fed the party line that it’s objective. As I said at the beginning of this post, I have more respect for someone that admits and deals with their bias than somebody that insults my intelligence by claiming it doesn’t exist.

This is why the East Coast bias has always made me laugh. There is no such thing. What there is, however, is a natural, local bias. People are biased to the amenities and practices of where they live and they bristle at anyone that would attempt to disrupt it by introducing different ideas, even if they’re better.

We see it every time the Maple Leafs play the Canucks and the start time gets bumped up to 4pm pacific. People act like the CBC wants the start time changed to give the Maple Leafs an advantage. Truth is, they want the start time changed because you’re going to get a larger viewership for that specific game if you hold it earlier. That’s not bias. It’s money.

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327 comments

  1. Chelsea
    June 12, 2011

    On behalf of Canucks nation, thank you for writing this article.

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    • Graeme
      June 12, 2011

      The Rome hit looked accidental to you? Don’t think you can accidentally hit someone late like that. You can’t equate it with the Chara hit where the question was intent.

      Maybe your team just isn’t all that likable.

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      • Patrick
        June 12, 2011

        You sir, are an idiot. How late was the hit? half a second? you have the luxury of instant reply, try being on the ice and making that play. Oh, somoene’s crossing your blue line with his head down? well gee, guess you should let up and have him skate on by. See how long you last in the league. We don’t want you liking our team. It’s our team for a reason. The Bruins are every bit as classless as they claim the canucks to be and the evidence as they say is in the pudding. It’s okay, after tomorrow, you can cry and it’ll be 6 straight finals where the Bruins haven’t won since their last one.

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        • Maple Leafer
          June 13, 2011

          Murphy indicated that the hit was almost a full second late. He also said they allow a half second after puck release. This means he was hit about a second and half after puck release which is about three times what is allowed. It wasn’t an instant, it was a second and a half. An eternity in sports to decide how to hit someone.

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          • Howser
            June 13, 2011

            Your math is terrible Leafer, Murphy said the hit was ALMOST a full second after the puck was released. He also said that the league allows for half a second delay, so Rome was less then half a second too late. Try and make any decision in that amount of time you twit.

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            • Maple Leafer
              June 13, 2011

              Sorry to make you look bad in print Howser but Murphy said he had it a close to a second late-not after the puck was released. Here is the quote from NHL.com
              http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=565103

              as I stated correctly a second and a half is an eternity in sports. Even a twit like you should know that eh howser?
              chuckle.

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              • rd
                June 14, 2011

                Watch the replay, the pass and the contact happen with the same time count being displayed on the clock. In case you are not clear on how time works, that means less than a full second transpired…

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    • Maple Leafer
      June 13, 2011

      On behalf of the rest of the nation of Canada and the entire Nation of America thank you for writing one of the funniest whines I’ve read in some time. Kudos, you deserve the silver tissue box award for whiney journalism.

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      • Copolii
        June 13, 2011

        Speak for yourself, moron.

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  2. Chris (@lyteforce)
    June 12, 2011

    Such biased hoserism! Yet I still think it’s one of your best pieces ever.

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  3. Jo
    June 12, 2011

    This is pure awesomeness. Thanks for taking what so many of us have been thinking and making it so eloquent!

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  4. Steve
    June 12, 2011

    *clap*…………….*clap*……………*clap*……..*clap*….*clap*..*clap**clapclapclapclapclapclap*!!!
    beautifully put.

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  5. eric blacha
    June 12, 2011

    Great read. How has no one spoke about Marchand’s clothes line on Ehrhoff; then clipping/hip check on Daniel Sedin? Was that not a classless play? No intent to injury. Nope, just stories of how he’s a great role player.

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    • Maple Leafer
      June 13, 2011

      Marchand probably learned from Hamhuis’ technique which he perfected to the point where he didn’t injure himself.

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  6. stellar jay
    June 12, 2011

    simply f.ing awesome!

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  7. spfo
    June 12, 2011

    Really well written article, dude. Nice to read an article that clearly articulates what a lot of Canucks fans are feeling.

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    • stellar jay
      June 13, 2011

      Ah! Do You Feel Picked Upon?
      ( Nobody likes you, everybody hates you,
      You’re going out eat worms.
      Big fat juicy ones, short fat skinny …. )

      Get A Grip!

      “That was an easy save for me”
      was simply the wrong thing to say.
      It doesn’t matter he said more
      The line’s the story for the day.

      You want integrity and truth
      Then best you look some other place.
      It’s only twisted truth that sells
      In the media marketplace.

      I am surprised that you’re upset
      That no one likes the green and blue.
      You’re always knocked when you’re the best
      For knockings’s what the jealous do.

      But since you find you can’t ignore,
      Do what the middle finger’s for.

      Stellar Jay

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  8. Ang
    June 12, 2011

    Thanks, Harrison. Despite the flack you’ll no doubt cop for this article, thank you for writing it. Even after you’ve been called names and had your credibility questioned, this article will remain and the journalists who aren’t doing their jobs properly will continue to be questioned. As it should be.

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  9. kim r
    June 12, 2011

    Good article and good back up on your assertions. Hard to ignore it and well done. Thank you.

    It’s to the point where “journalist” has hit the bottom behind “used car salesman” and “politician”. But what do people do when there’s nothing but crap out there? Refuse to participate. Don’t spend your money on the papers that employ circus clowns. Don’t watch the stations and let the sponsors of said programs know EXACTLY why you aren’t buying their products. It’s all a business and money talks. Don’t give people who employ morons and liars your money. Sometimes it’s difficult. CBC takes taxpayer money and where else are we going to see the games?

    Most importantly, though, come to places like PITB where you get honesty. Find the ones who do practice honest reporting and facts and reward those places.

    We can complain about the quality of reporting (and about many things in life), but we have to say no more and refuse to participate.

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  10. Dee
    June 12, 2011

    Bravo. It’s about time someone called bs and it couldn’t have been said better.

    I’ve been stunned at the lack of standards evident in the Boston Globe coverage, and by their scribes on Twitter: biased, unprofessional and juvenile. I thought they were a big league paper with a reputation to uphold.

    The coverage of this year’s final round would make an excellent case study for a J-school prof.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 12, 2011

      “The coverage of this year’s final round would make an excellent case study for a J-school prof.”

      I completely agree with this. It’s been downright fascinating at times.

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  11. Go B's
    June 12, 2011

    SPOT ON !!!!!

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  12. ken8lankenship
    June 12, 2011

    Boston on the verge of elimination is clinging to anything they can use as motivation. Luongo’s comments could have been a little more careful but were hardly worthy of front page NHL.com news.
    Not to mention a bunch of Bruin players pretending like it was awful and they hadn’t heard the whole thing.

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  13. MLB
    June 12, 2011

    Thanks for a good laugh. Oh wait, this was a serious article?

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 12, 2011

      It was. Sorry it sailed over your head.

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      • kim r
        June 12, 2011

        Too many big words and proof of assertions. Wonder if this is the clown that gave everyone a thumbs down. We need some cans of TrollBGone.

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    • Anonymous
      June 12, 2011

      Mind giving a detailed response as to why you thought it wasn’t serious?

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    • Megan H
      June 12, 2011

      Thank you for writing this piece. As a lifelong Canucks fan, I’ve been looking forward to this moment since I was a kid, along with everyone else who’s kept the faith through all that time. Unfortunately, the only coverage where I am is Versus/NBC, and I’ve never missed CBC more in my life.

      I hate that my team isn’t ever given the benefit of the doubt. I hate the insinuation that they somehow don’t deserve to be there – didn’t work hard, got lucky, cheated, bullied their way in … whatever. I hate that commentators disguise bias and opinion as fact, and laugh about being ‘fair and balanced.’ I hate that there seems to be no way to balance the coverage out in the American market, so people perhaps being drawn to the game for the very first time are getting such a negative experience. And I hate that I’m letting stupid people that I don’t know, and who don’t matter, get under my skin, even though I know it’s a psychological game and the more emotions that play into it the better story it makes.

      Go Canucks Go! Finish the job tomorrow, in Boston. Then we’ll see if the media can rise to the occasion or continue with their poor loser cheerleading.

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      • gumby
        June 12, 2011

        “I hate the insinuation that they somehow don’t deserve to be there”

        President’s Cup. You don’t get that for arts and crafts.

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        • Andrew
          June 13, 2011

          LOL, if you clowns seriously think anybody is arguing that Vancouver doesn’t deserve to be there, you’re beyond paranoid.

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          • jess
            June 19, 2011

            I’ve had people straight out tell me the Canucks don’t deserve to be there. Not sure how that can be misinterpreted.

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  14. Sarah
    June 12, 2011

    Bless this article.

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  15. Schneider's Teeth
    June 12, 2011

    You’ve managed to perfectly sum up the thoughts of an entire city in one article. Why you are writing for a small Canucks blog and other far less intelligent people get cushy, high-paying jobs writing complete crap for some of the biggest media empires in the country while this is stuck on a small section of a Vancouver newspaper’s website, I’ll never know. But I’m glad you are or you might lose your intelligence in some sort of black hole that hovers over the big media. It’s horrible that the people this article refers to will probably just brush this off as more Canucks homerism and continue their hypocritical ways.

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  16. spfo
    June 12, 2011

    As the opening of this article stated very well, I think the concept of having no bias in something as polarising and fact based as sports is absurd. You know Dan Murphy, Botch, Garret, etc, want the Canucks to win, and you know Boston based writers want the Bs to win. Instead of hiding that it should be celebrated, and debate, well thought out crtique should win the day. If people were upfront a lot of this would seem less outrageous.

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  17. Melissa W.
    June 12, 2011

    Agree with all you said in the article. Maybe the best thing to do for the Canucks to do is to win the Cup and throw it in the face of the journalists who don’t spend enough time in Vancouver to realize how classy the team really is.

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  18. Drew
    June 12, 2011

    Perfect.

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  19. camcharron
    June 12, 2011

    Great bit, Harrison. Did you see The Score’s bit with Tyler Dellow, James Mirtle, Julian Sanchez (of PPP) and Damien Cox at the start of the season? The bit’s conclusion was what you got to in your last graf. I don’t claim to be objective in any of my stuff, just reasonable. Wish a lot of pros could do the same.

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  20. J.J.
    June 12, 2011

    Geez Harrison, how dare you use facts to prove your point.

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  21. J.J.
    June 12, 2011

    Harrison, Cam – FWIW… the MSM has always insisted that there is no cheering allowed in the press box – the often-used argument against allowing bloggers up there – but in this series you can definitely tell the ones cheering for the black and gold.

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  22. Chelsea
    June 12, 2011

    A few things though that you might want to correct: Toews won the Conn Smythe in 2010, not 2009, and Crosby in 2009, not 2008. Also, the Eastern Conference final was 7 games long, not 6.
    :)

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  23. Anonymous
    June 12, 2011

    I wish I could post gifs here (is it possible to post images in comments) because if I could there would be plenty of clapping gifs.

    Well done. You stated everything I’ve felt and more. A+

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  24. Frank
    June 12, 2011

    Harrison for PM!

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  25. Jake
    June 12, 2011

    now that is some writing.

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  26. Pseuccubus
    June 12, 2011

    Thanks.

    I’ve been holding back on yelling this for days: The problem with Milbury isn’t that he’s insulting the Sedins, people. The problem is that he thinks being female is actually an insult.

    This whole thing makes me so depressed

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    • Noodle
      June 12, 2011

      That’s what offended me the most about his comments. Other than the fact that it sounded like something a troll would say, not a professional analyst. Are we still, in 2011, using playing like a girl as an insult? Thanks for diminishing our abilities, and disregarding a sizable chunk of the viewers!

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    • Dave
      June 12, 2011

      Daniel Sedin commented on what the comments say about Milbury’s opinion of women. Milbury’s been steadily exposing himself as both a misogynist and a hypocrite.

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    • Zelmo
      June 12, 2011

      This was the exact point Daniel made in his Sportsnet interview with Kypreos et al. It looked like his answer went whoooosh over their heads.

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      • rsm
        June 12, 2011

        That it went over their heads is hardly surprising. I do have to say that Daniel’s comments were absolutely brilliant. Just the kind of snarky commentary we should have much more of.

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    • Sarah
      June 12, 2011

      Thank you! That’s what annoyed me so much about his comments, especially since Thelma and Louise [the insult of choice] are such awesome, kick-a$$ women.

      Harrison – Fantastic article. It’s nice that us over-the-top-yet-thoughtful-and-intelligent Canuck fans have such a great, well-balanced blog. Keep it up!

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  27. 2minsforClipping
    June 12, 2011

    Lots of Minuses already.. isn’t their a Bosox game on or some puppies you can go kick

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  28. TubaNat
    June 12, 2011

    Great article! I’ve been getting progressively angrier at a lot of the commentating and reporting this series, so it’s good to see someone really calling it out. Of course, once the cup is won every article will be forgotten and the only thing that will be remembered in the book of history is the winner (although this article probably deserves an appendix or something…)

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  29. Mel
    June 12, 2011

    Yes! Coverage of the Canucks reminds me of that saying about not being paranoid if they really are out to get you. I was reading Larry Brooks in the NYPost today, sounding off on Milbury’s insults and the NHL consulting Brian Burke on Rome’s hit, and I was thinking, “Whew, it’s not just us.” Sometimes I do wonder if it’s paranoia or oversensitivity here in Vancouver, so it’s a relief to read your blog post, complete with reasoned examples.

    Sports journalism, an oxymoron for sure.

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  30. Alasdair
    June 12, 2011

    Very well worded article! Unfortunately, those who might grow from reading such an article (i.e., the “journalists” referred to in the article) will never read this.

    These people should honestly be ashamed of calling themselves journalists, but this is just a reflection of the general state of journalism these days. No wonder people are growing tired of the mass media! As comedian Bill Hicks used to be fond of saying, “The media is a liar.”

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  31. GM
    June 12, 2011

    Excellent article. I’m glad I’m not the only one that sees whats going on and I am happy someone was able to say it so well.

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  32. Thomas Pratt
    June 12, 2011

    I think this post is pretty much spot on. Some in the media and blogosphere have created a false narrative of this series and, by the power of groupthink, it’s taken on a life of it’s own. I thought it was a very shocking, sad indictment of the national media that Sekeres’ article asking if the Canucks were the league’s most hated team spawned Bruce Arthur’s article saying neither team was Cup worthy, which spawned two more articles this weekend concluding no, in fact, the Canucks are the only once worth of hate. Talk about beating a dead meme. I think Keven Allan in USA Today is the only one who pointed out both teams employ divers.

    I’m not sure media are the only ones making me feel less joy that I expected in a long Cup run. Many, if not most, blogs admit bias, but still don’t deliver much of substance. Some fans are making it harder for me to feel like I want to be one of them. I’ve seen some of the most vicious, nasty Tweets from fans of both teams during this series. Some opinions are ludicrous. But the propensity to attack the person, rather that the opinion, and the unwillingness to just agree to disagree, is very troubling to me.

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  33. nj
    June 12, 2011

    Thank God for you guys. You just took the thoughts out of my mind and put them on… um, paper? Brilliant. I hope every sports writer who has written this about the Canucks reads this.

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  34. Parvej
    June 12, 2011

    Thank you so much for such a great read. It was refreshing to say the least, hopefully it makes the less than professional journalists out there reflect a little on their careers and where they’re supposed to be standing as part of the media. It’s gotten ridiculously out of hand, and we’re all frustrated. This article definitely nailed it, great job!

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  35. Noodle
    June 12, 2011

    Great, great piece. The Canucks as villains angle is something that’s been bothering me for awhile. You don’t like the Canucks (or conversely, do)? That’s fine…just own it. .

    The other thing that has been killing me about this series is that there are so many more interesting storylines than ‘Did Luongo disrespect Thomas?’ or ‘Are Canucks the most hated team?’. How about highlighting the impressive work BOS has done shutting down the Sedins, or the importance of the Nucks third line this series? There are 100′s of media following the series right now, and yet most of what we seem to see is a seemingly endless stream of articles about the war of words between the teams.

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  36. Sicool
    June 12, 2011

    Nicely written article. Needs more Julien whining though. But good job.

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  37. Jane rob
    June 12, 2011

    Right on!! you have summed up exactly what i was feeling- excellent and well written piece, as usual. I always read your blog before CBC etc for good reason. Well done.

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  38. Steve S
    June 12, 2011

    I know this doesn’t have as much to do about the article, but there is one problem I wish to address. The reffing in this series and the playoffs hasn’t gone the Canucks way, and in my opinion, it’s partially there fault. The Canucks have played a game which makes the refs almost impossible to call things right. By having people like Burrows and Lapierre diving and trying to get calls, the Canucks get less of actual calls. Every team does it around playoff time, but because they are known for it, they don’t get the right calls. By that happening, people start complaining, and the refs get annoyed, because they can’t distinguish between what is right and what is wrong. It sucks, but the Canucks get what they deserve for the most part in my opinion. Especially game 5, where Boston held back, and Vancouver attacked Boston. They said they were cracking down on the goon hockey, and Boston listened, but Vancouver didn’t. I’m a big Canucks fan, but it annoys me how so many Canucks fans complain about reffing, when I feel that by the way the Canucks play, they should except to not get all the calls. The reffing still has been bad, it’s just the tripping on burrows in game 5 was his fault for always exaggerating. The refs try their best, but they can’t always be right.

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  39. cris
    June 12, 2011

    thank you so much for this piece!!! i am a die hard canucks fan and i think that the canucks are crucified under the media. i mean, luongo said one thing about thomas that wasnt even meant to be mean, and all of the sudden hes this cocky egomatic rich boy. other teams have said way worse things than that about that canucks and no attention goes into it whatsoever. i mean, didnt jonathan toews say something about the canucks in the first round? i didnt see anyone caring.

    thanks for the atricle!!!

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  40. Cikas
    June 12, 2011

    This is by far one of the best article I’ve read on PiTB. I am quite frankly disgusted by all the media bias even our very own Canadian-owned CBC. News flash CBC you’re broadcasting to CANADA, where HOCKEY is on OUR BLOOD. No need for sensationalism to garner viewers…
    Keep up the awesome work PiTB!

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  41. Sach
    June 12, 2011

    I don’t have much to add, but just wanted to thank you for writing this. We’re lucky to have sportswriters like you guys here.

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  42. Karen
    June 12, 2011

    It’s interesting that media outlets are bothering to employ people who resort to these tactics, given the large number of alternative options available to the audience. Has technology enabled journalism to become biased? It’s ok that Rozner says the Canucks are a disgrace, because he has an audience who want to read that. Readers who don’t agree can simply click on to another link – or engage the author in a little interw3b debate (sidebar – Rozner needs some PR lessons before he starts rising to this type of exchange).

    Wonderful point about the CBC carefully choosing when to show fans in Rogers Arena. Now I have another reason to dislike them, whining about their camera work was getting old.

    Unbiased journalism is becoming boring, unfortunately – and it’s not just in sports. It’s too bad that so many people with journalistic integrity are held to their own little corner of the blogosphere. Congratulations again on achieving a larger chunk of that universe, PITB.

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  43. kaboomblahstick
    June 12, 2011

    Is it just me, or does the media coverage for this series hugely resemble Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix?

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    • kaboomblahstick
      June 12, 2011

      BTW, almost forgot to thank you for the great article… The “mainstream media” in these playoffs have really gotten onto my nerves… I can’t even think about the Canucks these days with all this “journalism” crap stuck in my head.

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    • Shantini
      June 12, 2011

      If I could like this a thousand times I would.

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  44. Josh (Vancan19)
    June 12, 2011

    nice job Harrison. enjoyed it very much

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  45. Forsy
    June 12, 2011

    Not usually a big fan of PITB, but this article was an accurate homerun on all points, and general completeness. Bravo, sir.

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  46. anon
    June 12, 2011

    Never more proud of you guys than after this particular blog.

    The best exposure of this bias was given by a commenter on Mark Spector’s column regarding Alex Burrows and Maxim Lapierre:

    http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/2011/06/12/spector_honestly_speaking/

    the commenter was IDontGetIt (post #38):

    http://communities.sportsnet.ca/thread/59010?start=30&tstart=0

    You need to entrain this guy into blog. He just laid Spector bare.

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  47. Tom
    June 12, 2011

    I was in the arena for game 4. The crowd were cheering for louongo getting pulled not because they were on tv. FACT

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    • Chazz Ranger
      June 12, 2011

      Nice of you to speak on behalf of eighteen thousand arena fans, Dick. Sorry, I mean Tom. Did you go around and ask every one of them why they were cheering? I’d say maybe most of them were cheering for Luongo (ya, that’s how his name is spelled. FACT.) not BECAUSE he got pulled, but as a show of support IN SPITE OF being pulled. That’s what fans do when their team has a bad game… emphasis on TEAM. Not just goaltender.

      Also: p!ss off, troll.

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  48. Jaypee
    June 12, 2011

    This is a fine piece of journalism. Blogging at its finest. Kudos to you Mr. Mooney.
    It was a piece that needed to be written.

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  49. Scott
    June 12, 2011

    Awesome Article! Right on the money brother! Well DONE! GO CANUCKS GO!!!

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  50. Julia
    June 12, 2011

    I just saw a little clip on CTV News where they were talking about the Rome/Horton hit. The reporter said that Rome said although he didn’t intend to hurt him, “if he were to do it again he would make the same play.” Well, that wasn’t quite what he said… I think what he said was more to the effect of: “the game is fast and I can’t say that I would make a different play because a quarter or half a second makes all the difference.” I just laughed to myself and thought, oh PITB, you’ve got it right again!!

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  51. eric
    June 12, 2011

    Great article. You read my mind (as well as the minds of many other Canucks fans), took what i was feeling, and put it in details. Bravo…Bravo

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  52. Steph
    June 12, 2011

    BEST. ARTICLE. EVER.
    Thank you for writing this! I found this through my Tumblr dashboard and you really are the man of the hour. Good job!

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  53. Dave
    June 12, 2011

    As I said in another comment, I think the media bias has become so pervasive that its crept into the officiating, not in a conspiratorial sense, but in a sense that being surrounded by so many descriptions of the Canucks as villains, even the most objective ref has a hard time giving them
    the benefit of the doubt.

    I know they’re embellishing, if not skating the edge of diving, but how much can you blame them when so many obvious penalties have been missed?

    One issue that really disturbs me in this media narrative is the undercurrent that diving and embellishing is worse than hooking, slashing, and cross-checking – at least slashing and cross-checking on the part of the Bruins.

    As for Mike Milbury:

    12 seasons as a Bruin, check.
    Climbed into the stands and beat a fan with a shoe, check.
    Traded away Luongo when a GM, check

    …and this is the man whose narrative is driving the media? .

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    • Thomas Pratt
      June 12, 2011

      You forgot to add of Milbury:

      intermission commentator during Bruins games on NESN

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      • Dave
        June 12, 2011

        I did not know that – but it fits…

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    • gumby
      June 12, 2011

      “I know they’re embellishing, if not skating the edge of diving, but how much can you blame them when so many obvious penalties have been missed?”

      If they would just call that sh*t in the first place, this series wouldn’t be out of hand. The NHL has a frickin’ problem here.

      I for one am bored with the facewashing, dump on your @ss after the whistle, scrum scrum scrum, hack and slash product they have. It is boring and slow. Call the goons, let the skaters skate. I know Milbury would think this is effeminate in some way, but it is more entertaining than the 4 minute of after-whistle mugging we all have to sit through.

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  54. Steph N.
    June 12, 2011

    THANK YOU. Finally, someone who’s rational enough to point out what is wrong with sports journalism these days. I’m supposed to be enjoying watching the Canucks in my first SCF (was born in late 94 so I obviously wasn’t around for the last one) and being excited. Instead, I’m subject to all this unnecessary and brutal hatred towards my team, living in an internet world after all. And it honestly pisses me off.

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    • far_raf
      June 12, 2011

      I am so sorry for this Steph, I have been watching the Canucks since 1970 and can report: 1. like you I am excited. 2. I am totally on board with you disappointment with the media.

      All I can say is ignore the crap and enjoy the hockey, this is the best team we have ever fielded and they should take the cup.

      Be well Steph.

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  55. Sheryl
    June 12, 2011

    Thank you so much for such a sensible, well-written article. This should be sent to every big media outlet across North America. I’ve been looking forward to this run for so long, and the longer it’s gone on, the more miserable I’ve become. I no longer enjoy watching the NHL Network, something I normally do every morning before I go to work, along with SportsCentre and Sportsnet Connected. Alot of the things they’ve said are just plain stupid. Reading sports articles on the net is absolutely infuriating. I’ve given up on newspapers. And hockey fans not into Vancouver have just become absoutely nasty. It is amazing that I am not a raging alcoholic. I’ve never been more unhappy. I think even if/when we win, we will still get bashed all summer long.

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  56. Silkie
    June 12, 2011

    This was extremely well written. As a Vancouverite, thank you for defending our team.

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  57. Gordie T.
    June 12, 2011

    Harrison, you continue to be (in my subjective opinion, of course), one of the most level-headed, rational and articulate (not to mention well-read) sports writers that I am aware of.

    Thanks for all your great work this season (and thanks to the rest of the PITB crew as well).

    Here’s hoping you keep on movin’ up in the world.

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  58. northvanner
    June 12, 2011

    Hands down best piece on the bias and reporting issue. How lucid this piece is actually makes me worry about the main stream sports journalism profession – those hacks have to become ever more sensationalist to establish and maintain careers. Doubly so in a city such as Boston where the literacy rates are obviously quite low.

    Keep up the good work fellas.

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  59. PERFECTION
    June 12, 2011

    OMG. Thank you for this article, i feel like my frustrations about this whole thing were released. You said everything right.

    I also hate how Tim Thomas slashed burrows when he was standing infront of him. I MEAN COME ON. i know he is a good goalie but to do that thing? pfffffffffft. And everything about the given penalties to canucks even if they don’t deserve it, and the penalties that should be given to bruins but wasn’t given. Even the commentators are noticing it.

    Also, the treatment the canucks players experienced specifically to burrows,raymond, and hansen when they were eating in a restaurant in boston and waited for 30 mins. only to find out that freaking retarded restaurant will not give them food. -_-

    im speechless……………..

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  60. Chazz Ranger
    June 12, 2011

    You, sir, are pure win. Another amazing read.

    Hate to break it to you Harrison, but it may be tough for you to get employed as a big-time sports journalist. You’re insightful, level-headed, consise, and just plain right – clearly traits they don’t seem to hire for… ;)

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 12, 2011

      Concise my ass. Did you see how long this post was? :-)

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      • far_raf
        June 12, 2011

        Nope, you made many well thought out responses too many issues in a small amount of words. Concise was the correct word.

        Can I please say well done?

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  61. Steven
    June 12, 2011

    I hope the Sun pays you for this blog…this is fantastic. Best Stanley Cup coverage ever.

    You know what is going to rock though? When the Canucks win, all this bullshit is going to disappear and we will hear nothing but about the legacy of this team for the next hundred years.

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  62. peanutflower
    June 12, 2011

    Wow, so many compliments! Great article. This issue has been causing me a lot of sleepless nights — why does everyone hate our team so much? It’s too bad there can’t be a send to all button somewhere that would send this article out to every sportswriter, sports editor, coach, ref, NHL headquarters and who ever else needs to have the voice of reason yelled into their ears. I hope they’re paying you guys something….

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  63. DJ
    June 12, 2011

    This deserves to be picked up and published nationally. Awesome article man, keep it up.

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  64. BeCanucks
    June 12, 2011

    Sir, YES, Sir!
    Exactly, but, honestly… we could smell it coming, and I decided roughly six weeks ago (after the second coming of the Voldemort Game) to not read anything else than some selected writers. Yay for PITBI!
    I don’t know how we can thank you enough for the great writing you’ve gifted us for this whole season.

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    • peanutflower
      June 12, 2011

      I agree totally. It’s taken more restraint that I have some days to just read PiTB and nothing else.

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      • Julia
        June 12, 2011

        I know what you mean, I had to stop reading the comments on Puck Daddy (although I usually still read most of the articles) because my blood pressure was getting too high.

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  65. Biased Fan
    June 12, 2011

    Great article. I have a question that has been fermenting in my mind since the Burrows “biting” incedent. Do we have a PR department that deals with this sort of stuff? It seems to me these larger market teams are able to spin their story and get it printed whereas we are not. I mean, what sort of degenerate goes around putting his fingers in other peoples’ mouths? Sure, I’m a fan and perhaps I’m seeing things through lenses that have been watching us champion a game of speed, intutive passing and creative playmaking all season(s), but virtually all of the bad behaviour we’ve been accused of during the entire playoff series is reactionary – it’s not instigating. In this age of journalism coming from so many different sources why are we unable to get the other, (provoked) side of the story out? Why is this insightful, thought provoking piece destined to stay on this side of the Rockies?

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  66. Marc
    June 12, 2011

    This article has brought up a lot of stuff that’s bothered me about how this series has been covered and it needed to be said, but sometimes I think the Canucks do themselves absolutely no favours when it comes to dealing with the media and I think that’s where a lot of this has dirt has seeped into the conversation about these finals. And that’s not to say that they should be super media savvy because this is a sports championship they’re playing towards, not political office. But a lot of the time, I try to imagine how this team comes across without the benefit of the doubt and it doesn’t surprise me that they’ve gotten a rough ride with the press.

    Like, Luongo: he’s been burned enough times by the media to realize that whatever points he has to make about goaltending techniques re his style vs. Thomas’s style are going to be picked apart and are going to reinforce the narrative the media has already got going about these two teams, ie: Boston/Tim Thomas are the blue collar scrappy underdogs & Vancouver/Luongo are the slick calculating west coast a-holes who act entitled and complain a lot.

    I don’t know. As soon as Burrows chomped down on Bergeron I knew the Canucks were going to have a rough time capturing hearts & minds.

    But boy it would be great if they won.

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  67. Sylvia
    June 12, 2011

    Canucks will show Brian and Cameron IT doesn’t MATTER if they’re the Boss! By the way – do they control the Refs too? It sure looks like it!

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  68. critically canuck
    June 12, 2011

    you had me hanging on every word of this lengthy but brilliantly written piece. well done.

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  69. Mike
    June 12, 2011

    It goes with the territory kid. Big bad Bruins, Montreal’s got the head office, Broad Street Bullies, Gretzky’s Whiners, mario’s sucks… People are always jealous of winners- especially losers – have you seen or heard those “journalists”? Lisps, speech impediments and men who couldn’t get laid in a whore house. Relax.

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  70. Janko
    June 12, 2011

    THANK YOU! Finally someone has efficiently and eloquently called out the off-ice (we won’t go into on-ice) bias evident in the media coverage of these finals. It has been ridiculous and one-sided to the nth degree, utterly and ethically deplorable, too, given the magnitude of the event. And that the Canucks themselves have been subject to the most offensive questions too is disgusting. I hope the team uses it to fuel their fires. Come on Canucks – GO WIN THE STANLEY CUP.

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  71. Canucksfan
    June 12, 2011

    Well written, things I’ve said throughout these playoffs (and the season). you will get flack I’m sure by the ones with the bias saying they don’t have any. to them I say….the truth hurts doesn’t it?
    Go Canucks, you deserve the win, been a fan since I was a little gir (and I’m not so young any more) and I will always be a fan.

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  72. Weener
    June 12, 2011

    Harrison, wait til you see this article…

    http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey/nhl/article/1007151–kelly-another-reason-to-dislike-canucks-luongo?bn=1#article

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 12, 2011

      Ugh. I’ve never heard of that guy. I think I know why.

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      • Zelmo
        June 12, 2011

        Read the comments. He gets taken apart.

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      • What the Canuck?
        June 13, 2011

        Because your head is up a dark space?

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        • Harrison Mooney
          June 13, 2011

          Damn. How did you know the only thing that hurts my feelings is the implication that my head is up my ass?

          Welp, I can’t go on. Blog’s closed, everybody.

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  73. vancityt
    June 12, 2011

    Thank you, Harrison, for your level-headed perspective on this. I’ve never seen such a pitiful display of ‘journalism’ in what’s meant to pass as ‘real media.’ They may mock bloggers in the ‘big leagues’ but that’s only because they can’t keep up.

    May this piece get picked up and circulated all over the place. Retweet and like, to all 600+ PITB fans. Harrison’s done his job, now let’s do ours.

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  74. Alice
    June 12, 2011

    Thank you so much for this post! With the sheer volume of writing that’s being churned out this series that subtly condemns the Canucks and praises the Bruins, it’s getting harder to really vocalise my frustration with all this bias in a well reasoned way without sounding like a shrill ‘tinhat’. Now I can just conveniently post a link to this article which articulates everything perfectly.

    And thank you for pointing out that Milbury’s comments were sexist and for not responding to it by calling players of other teams by girl names. It’s depressing that this sort of behaviour is so ingrained within the culture of the sport that no one sees it as anything out of the ordinary enough to comment upon.

    Sometimes I think that the obsession with ‘narratives’ is a bit detrimental to hockey writing. It makes writers focus on the stories that have this inherent human drama to them rather than focus most of their energies on writing about the play on the ice.

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  75. Beverly
    June 12, 2011

    Thank you for an amazingly well written article. These are exactly the same examples of hypocrisy Canucks fans everywhere have been ranting about. But, as you pointed out, no one cares what us “fans” think. Maybe we should start to call it “sports journalism” instead.

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  76. Cathylu
    June 12, 2011

    Thanks for a great article. As a relatively new Canuck fan I didn’t realize the amount of hatred the rest of the league seems to have for us. I agree with everything you’ve written. And I can tell you being in TD Garden for games 3 and 4 was one of the hardest things I’ve ever been through. The guy sitting next to me kept trying to get me to admit that we were just lucky to win games 1 and 2 and obviously the Bruins are a superior team. Since he was drunk I didn’t really want to talk to him. Hopefully winning the Cup will be the best revenge. (And as someone who is 1/4 Swedish I find the things said about the Sedins to be extremely insulting).

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  77. NucksFan
    June 12, 2011

    Wow this is a pathetic article. I’ve never read such a biased blog in my life, typical of a Canucks fan and I am one. “look at the penalties against us, must be a CONSPIRACY”. Refs are costing us the series, Canucks fans whine more than any other team, it’s quite pathetic.

    Here’s a beauty. “In short, the coverage of Tim Thomas has been kind. The coverage of Roberto Luongo has been mean-spirited and dishonest.”

    Really? Thomas has had kind coverage because he’s been THE BETTER GOALIE. Do we need to bring up stats?

    Give it up, you have issues just like everyone else in here.WAKE UP and be a realistic hockey fan like myself.

    I live in Vancouver and as a Canucks fan we are the worst fans and least knowledgeable out of all NHL based teams. I miss the days of Linden and Bure, back then we were better fans, yet, WE STILL HAD A RIOT WHEN WE LOST.

    So pathetic.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 12, 2011

      You clearly didn’t read this article. Not once did I mention penalties.

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    • Kyle
      June 12, 2011

      You should work on your reading comprehension skills, rather than pick one quote at random out of the article and make fun of it. The issue is one-sided media coverage. If refs are costing us the series, why are the Canucks currently leading 3-2? It just doesn’t make sense, it’s almost as if that was never mentioned once in the article…

      Well-written article, and sums up just how blown up every minor incident has been in this series.

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    • Doug
      June 12, 2011

      This comment is awful. You would be taken seriously if you could actually retort with some semblance of a rational, supported argument. The article is about media coverage and a perception of bias, not penalties, reffing or goalie quality.

      As a “Canucks fan”, you also seem to have some sort of self-hatred psychosis, and I would get that checked out.

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    • gumby
      June 12, 2011

      “typical of a Canucks fan and I am one.”

      Heh, I for one call Bullshit on that, Skeezix.

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    • Anonymous
      June 12, 2011

      What are you even talking about? Your argument is so flawed I don’t even know where to begin.

      Where is he not being “a realistic hockey fan” like yourself?

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    • peanutflower
      June 12, 2011

      Hey, hold it, what? Better fans back in 1994? How does that work? Were people better then? Were they smarter? I remember 1994 and I think people were actually pretty much the same as they are now. Did they all go to hockey school then or something so they could be better fans? I seem to remember a whole lot of “fans” dissing poor Pavel… That’s actually a pretty strange comment to write. I’m pretty sure I know more about hockey now then I did then as I’ve had 17 years of practice watching, not to mention the acquisition of (hopefully) 17 years of wisdom and maturity. Now, how about you?

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  78. Jacq
    June 12, 2011

    Harrison – awesome article. You put my thought exactly into a detailed, well articulated report.

    NOW, VANCOUVER SUN EDITORS – I STRONGLY SUGGEST YOU PUT THIS NEWSPIECE EITHER ON YOUR FRONT PAGE OR AT LEAST HEADLINING IN THE SPORTS SECTION. THe Sun needs more pieces like this.

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  79. Tom
    June 12, 2011

    I salute you Harrison (and Daniel). There is no simply no place for bigots & the ignorant to hide when your hockey knowledge and penmanship is brought to bear.

    Your erudition and humour have garnered a large and highly literate readership.

    Let it be said once more – a Canuck victory tomorrow or Wednesday will stop it all. It will be replaced by a grudging respect that will be around for years to come. Spector did actually get one thing right on May 19 in his column “Spector on Canucks – get used to it” http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/2011/05/17/spector_column_canucks/

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  80. Mondo Bizarro
    June 12, 2011

    One point you’re wrong on – Marc Savard was suspended for biting in 2003, and not suspended for biting Carcillo last year, so he has TWO bites to his credit. (And another Bruin was fined for biting a player in the face – the Bruins hardly have the moral high ground.) Chris Chelios also bit a guy, and said he enjoyed it!

    As for Lapierre enhancing the spear – why is there no condemnation of the spear? Why is there no condemnation of the hack on Bieksa?

    And about Milbury – isn’t he the guy who attacked a grandfather in the stands with a shoe? Yeah, he’s a real role model!

    Frankly, I’m like Bieksa – “Who Cares?”

    The best revenge is living well as they say – and hopefully we’ll be living with the Stanley Cup here on the Wet Coast.

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    • Brady
      June 12, 2011

      No no. You’ve got it all wrong. If the Cannucks win, you’ll hardly see the cup. The Stanley Cup will be spending the summer in Sweden.

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  81. George Stevens
    June 12, 2011

    Thank you for this article. I’m getting angry reading and listening to all the ill-informed media trying to depict this series as a battle of Good (Bruins) vs Evil (Canucks). It seems funny that these opinions became more common once the Canucks started dominating the league. I assume that part of that is due to a jealousy and part is due to exposure but it’s still annoying.

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  82. zduck
    June 12, 2011

    Phenomenal article!!! Now here’s hoping that someone shows it to Milbury and the others (would love to see his reaction). Not only would it teach the guys who do write all the biased BS a lesson, but it would teach them how to write articles, period.

    What I don’t understand is why newspapers and networks continue to hire ex NHLers, that never did anything in their careers, to cover such a big event like the Stanley Cup Finals. It’s obvious these guys are very bitter and are going to criticize everything a team like Vancouver does. I’m often told that “jealousy will get you nowhere” so what’s the point in hiring a bum like Milbury that was a nobody when he played in the NHL. For him to go on slagging a couple of the classiest players in the NHL like he did just shows the ignorance of both him and the network.

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  83. Jerry Jagr
    June 12, 2011

    Amazingly well written article. Cheers. Keep it up. Sports journalism needs you.

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  84. Nucksalltheway!
    June 12, 2011

    Totally agree, but there is a league bias, suspensions given to Torres/Rome for hits to the head are out of whack with precedents.

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  85. Jacq
    June 12, 2011

    And shame on you, CBC Sports, for your attempt to fan the flames on Luongo. Televizing the fans cheering and pretending it had something to do with Luongo leaving the ice was in such extreme poor taste. I never expected it from CBC Sports. Shouldn’t they be supporting a Canadian team? And what about the CBC Sports reporter who approached Luongo after the game and asked him how he felt when the fans cheered while he was leaving the post? Duuuhh…what was Luongo even supposed to say to that??! Damn disrespectful. Way to put a man down on his game. But I’m glad Luongo cleared his head of all this media nonsense and came back fierce in Game 5.

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  86. Brady
    June 12, 2011

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N0uCI9VQWbE

    Please! That is not fabricated bias… that is a limp-wristed Euro taking a dive in the cup finals. Sure Crosby was shut down two years ago. But didn’t Malkin step up? And I seem to remember Kane and Sharp picking up the slack for Toews. I think it’s a little newsworthy that the twinkies have combined for what… 2 points???

    I’ll be cheering hard for a Boston win in game seven! Hopefully Milan Lucic (a hard working local kid) can celebrate in front of his friends and family!

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 12, 2011

      Watch your linked clip again, but this time watch for the ugly slash on the ankle and you’ll see why he actually went down.

      And I’m not sure what your point is about Crosby and Toews. Yes, other players stepped up to make up for their lack of production: you’re seeing the same thing from the Canucks this year. What’s your point?

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  87. Shantini
    June 12, 2011

    Really, really good one. As a whole. But in particular, thanks for taking on the, “being a girl is an insult” bit. It gets tiring. The bias against the Sedins is, as you said, xenophobia, and it has no place in journalism, or anywhere else for that matter.

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  88. Tom
    June 12, 2011

    @nucksfan (not)

    when I praised PITB above I should have added “when technology is aligned with (PITBs) hockey knowledge & penmanship”.

    one of the blessings of technology is that claims such as yours can be readily verified or dismissed. So I moused-over & copied your “look at the penalties” phrase & did a Ctrl-F (= find) in today’s blog; lo and behold there was no other instance other than yours. I guess that says it all.

    PITB is a like an open source project. There are the primary authors (Harrison & Daniel) and then collaborators, the honest commentators, from all walks of life. Mistakes are corrected, truths amplified, rumours dismissed and lies exposed.

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    • Kyle
      June 12, 2011

      Haha, yeah, I laughed when I checked to see if any of the words “officiating”, “ref(s)”, “referee(s)” “penalty” or “penalties” showed up in the article. Nope, not once. Only in a handful of comments here and there.

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  89. Mike
    June 12, 2011

    One of the best articles I have ever read! The only thing I would disagree with is the booing of Luongo in Rogers arena when he was pulled in game four. I was there and can attest to the crowd being terrible. But the point you make about CBC setting it up to make Canucks fans look bad is fascinating. Thank you for pointing that out.

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  90. DanD
    June 12, 2011

    I certainly don’t understand CBC’s coverage. Sometimes I think they’re almost trying too hard to appear objective, rather than actually showing a bias. But then they do stuff like the Luong stunt in game 4, and I have to wonder. Or Glenn Healy gives another Bruins pep talk. It’s bizarre.

    Thank God for Jim Hughson!

    And thank you Harrisson for this article! Well written and well argued. I’m retweeting it to everyone!

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  91. gumby
    June 12, 2011

    F*ckin’ A. About time someone said it.

    I have been very frustrated with the coverage. It seems if the Canucks ride the edge, it’s unfair, if the Bruins hack and slash behind the play, it’s just “Welcome to Beantown, baby!”.

    Milbury is a hack and relentless homer, and should be taken off the air. The “Sisters” bit was way over the line. It’s one thing if it’s some doofus in a bar, but he’s being paid for this bullsh*t. Even Cherry wouldn’t go that far.

    And the thing with Luongo’s comments on Thomas are equally ridiculous. Totally manufactured controversy.

    Anyway, yargle blargle…. look at the number of comments!!! Hey, editors — THERE”S A STORY HERE!!!

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  92. Janko
    June 12, 2011

    PUT THIS IN THE NEWSPAPER – IT IS ERUDITE AND CORRECT. Please VanSun editors, this needs to be said loudly and clearly to as many people as possible.

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  93. Anonymous
    June 12, 2011

    Also, the fact that this really blew up in a series agains the BRUINS of all teams just blows my mind.

    Watching the Bruins throughout these playoffs, I’ve seen tons of examples of how dirty, cheap, and classless they can be but now they are the perfect angels that can do no wrong and the Canucks supposed to be the awful villains.

    In the Montreal series alone, Ference gave the Bell Centre the middle finger and tried to pretend he didin’t mean it, Lucic boarded Spacek face first into the glass, Ference drove his shoulder into Halpern’s face 200 feet away from play, etc.

    They sure weren’t villified as much as the Canucks were today. It’s just ridiculous to think about.

    Could you imagine what would happen if a Canuck sprayed water and then threw a water bottle on a fan in Boston? I shudder to imagine the outcry.

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    • gumby
      June 12, 2011

      I keep thinking … have you people never watched the Bruins play hockey before???

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      • Anonymous
        June 13, 2011

        Well yes but the point is, WHY is this all being ignored? Why is everything the Bruins do just ‘good old fashioned Bruins hockey’ when, if the tables were turned, the Canucks would be thoroughly berated for doing the same thing?

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  94. gumby
    June 12, 2011

    It’s frustrating … like, you can’t just play hockey, you have to win the propaganda war too?

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  95. Greg
    June 12, 2011

    So. Many. Things. Wrong. with this article. I’ll save my dissection of some of these ridiculous comments for ignorant Canucks fans rather than the writers who I pray aren’t paid to write rambling whine columns like these.

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    • Anonymous
      June 13, 2011

      Like? Just give us a couple examples if you don’t feel like talking about everything.

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  96. X
    June 12, 2011

    As a longtime Canuck fan from Hong Kong, thank you. You captured my frustration with the entire season, and why I am finding it increasingly difficult to type in “nhl.com” on my address bar without cursing at the screen in Cantonese for the utter subjectivity that the reporting on this great sport has had. I don’t have any hockey-watching friends here – Canucks-fans or otherwise, and sometimes it feels like I am fighting a one man war to get some actual perspective on the hockey side of hockey. Just sickening to see nothing but ” Nail biter this”, “Luongo inciendary comments that”..

    I will be rooting from Manchester United Restaurant & Bar tomorrow at 8am, when the game starts HK time. I hope I don’t have to hear anything about classlessness. And put a nice finish to a long childhood dream=)

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  97. Nigel
    June 12, 2011

    Mr. Mooney,

    I hope this fine piece of article gets national exposure. It is a joke that a joker like spector gets his stuff published on sportsnet everyday while gems like this is hidden and unknown to most people who cares about hockey.

    Please keep up the good work and hope that we can all celebrate and forget about all this crap journalism tomorrow.

    Nigel

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  98. melly
    June 12, 2011

    THANK YOU.

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  99. Jason
    June 12, 2011

    This is probably the best written piece of the Stanley Cup finals.
    Excellent job and summarizes everything I’ve been feeling into one excellent article!

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  100. Tyler Mervyn
    June 12, 2011

    Well put!

    Nice work.

    Go Canucks.

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  101. Saskfan
    June 12, 2011

    Wish I had written this…except for the wavering faith crack…there is no hell sending when faith wavers! Time to head back to church for a refresher :)

    As a non BC resident fan I too have been baffled by the vitriol that had been sent the Canuck’s way.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 12, 2011

      Heh. The wavering faith crack was a bit tongue-in-cheek. Feel free to dismiss it as the cynical observations of a man born and raised in the church.

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  102. Wayne Rose
    June 12, 2011

    You sound just like the thousands of other paranoid, insecure, blinded and arrogant Vancouver Canuck fans. So desperate after so many years that you will accept and applaud anything from a team that might bring the city its’ first (in forty years) cup.

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    • peanutflower
      June 13, 2011

      that’s the suckiest comment ever.

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    • Anonymous
      June 13, 2011

      Why bash but never properly criticize. Why not explain at least one thing you feel is wrong with the article? One point that doesn’t make sense to you?

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  103. kesrows
    June 12, 2011

    Thanks. That’s it.

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  104. far_raf
    June 12, 2011

    A simple thank you for this, well done.

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  105. peanutflower
    June 13, 2011

    So here’s a new article on the CBC website, and the writer is getting seriously slapped in the comments, but in light of what you wrote, Harrison, how does this fit? CBC is a strange bird, because theoretically we own them literally, and so how does that work with trying to maintain journalistic integrity and all that? It’s pointless to even read the comments or to get into the brouhaha.

    http://www.cbc.ca/sports/blogs/timwharnsby/2011/06/likable-tim-thomas-out-to-beat-disliked-canucks.html

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  106. Shawn
    June 13, 2011

    Well done on your bias article on bias in the media….It was very…umm…informative.

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    • Shawn
      June 13, 2011

      No one has anything to say, only tears when Canuck fans read the truth?

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  107. Erwin
    June 13, 2011

    Best piece I’ve ever read on the Canucks, hands down. Thank you to Harrison, and the rest of Pass It to Bulis writers for encapsulating a magical series. The poignancy and timing of the article couldn’t have been better. It would be nigh unforgivable for the Canucks to win the Stanley Cup, and be branded a collective disgrace to the game of hockey under veiled nuance.

    I will now proceed to spread The Word of the Bulies everywhere possible.
    Consider me a fan of your work for life.

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  108. HB
    June 13, 2011

    Excellent article, but you left some stuff out.

    As any J-school grad will tell you, it is drilled into journalism students to be “objective” and “neutral”. But does objectivity and neutrality sell papers? No, it does not. Sex does. Fear does. Good vs Evil does. Fueling the fires of your target audience does. Like it or not, that’s the business side, and that’s the base drive of every journalist.

    It’s not like sports writers can turn off their own rooting desires. Oh, they might be able to sit there in the box and act like they don’t care, but they all do. Every one will tell you to your face that they are a “fan of the game”, and not of any particular team. But unless they were unwillingly assigned to cover hockey because nobody else wanted to, it’s a pretty sure bet that every guy (and gal) sitting in the press box grew up a hockey fan. They had (have) a favorite team, favorite players. That didn’t disappear simply because they were handed credentials.

    I love studying language when it comes to sports articles. The only way for it to be purely neutral is to write “He passed the puck and the other guy put it into the net”. But that’s not how it gets written, is it? “Jones made a slick cross-ice pass and Smith was there to tip it in.” Shades of language designed to draw you in, paint you a picture, and depending on the audience, build subtle layers of like/dislike.

    I agree with you that some of the MSM news coverage has been downright shameful — particularly from neutral markets where their teams are no longer in the playoffs. Perhaps they think it’s ok to choose a side because they’re no longer in it; but it’s still wrong.

    But perhaps you should also consider why the media has reached this point. Obviously, the blogosphere has helped color even the most vaunted of coverage, and Twitter has made it possible for anybody to express what they’re feeling at the second they feel it. Things get re-tweeted and passed along, at times taken out of context, and people will interpret it as they see fit.

    Are the athletes themselves making it any easier on themselves? It is said Luongo has a sense of humor, but it’s not often seen in interviews. When he does attempt to make a joke, it’s put in context of the surly, sarcastic Luongo the media has been treated to previously. In 2010, when the Canucks were knocked out of the playoffs. Luongo said, “At least it was only 5 goals this year.” Obviously meant as a joke, but ridiculous. As a sport writer, how much are you going to take seriously after he says something like that – as Captain of the team – in the face of what was a major blow for VAN’s playoff run?

    As for the Sedins… I had a Vancouver fan tell me many months ago that the Sedins “don’t like to blow their own horns”. That might be true, but is the rest of Vancouver mute? I researched the Sedins last year during the playoffs and found that bit about them donating $1.5M of their own money to the Childrens’ Hospital. But it barely was heard of outside of BC. Every guy on the Canucks could be saints and angels, but that’s not what players are judged on; they’re judged by how they behave on the ice, and what they say as they step off of it.

    During the first series, Henrik stepped off the ice, and as Captain, and face of the team, stated that another team (the Blackhawks) “didn’t deserve” to be in the playoffs. It didn’t matter if that was his personal opinion; it didn’t matter if that was exactly what he said but what he really intended was something else. He said it, and it was sent out. How do you interpret a Captain making a remark like that? Exactly as expected: the Canucks were labeled sore winners and poor sports. Once you put that seed into somebody’s head, it is difficult if not impossible to dislodge; there’s a difference between chirping opponents and flat-out insulting them. The twins have come across as arrogant for several years; if they want to be seen as anything else, they need to do something about what comes out of their own mouths.

    Luongo cried as they were beaten both in 2009 and 2010. Anybody who’s ever played competitive sports will understand the emotional depth that goes into a championship run, but that idea gets tossed out the window when you see a professional athlete breaking down when it’s not even the final championship game. As a result, Luongo’s image became that he is weak-minded and easily broken.

    Ryan Kesler made his own share of gaffes. A year ago at the Olympics, he royally stuck his foot in it by declaring he hated Canadians. Quite the words coming from a guy being paid his paycheck by a Canadian team. A year later, and he’s practically a saint in Vancouver — bias goes both ways. When “the bad guy” is on your own team, a lot gets forgiven, doesn’t it?

    Any hockey player will tell you that attempting to draw penalties is part of the game. A touch of careful embellishment here or there is nothing unusual; the game moves quickly, and the refs have an incredibly difficult, high-pressure job to make these calls on the ice. But Vancouver has shown a propensity for embellishment that goes above and beyond most other teams. They were known for it in the regular season, and it’s gone on in the playoffs. When one of the Sedins takes a hit and falls to the ice and clutches his face… when one of the Canucks got slashed in the leg and his head snapped back… the list goes on. It makes other people respect the Canucks less as players. Kesler was notorious for whining before this year. Burrows has done so much this Final round that he is going to have to lose body parts to draw a penalty. This is not a surprise to anybody who’s followed the team long enough. What’s sad is that the Canucks have MORE than enough natural hockey talent to not NEED to pull off these routines — and most hockey fans recognize that. As one of the broadcasters said in game 5, it’s a case of crying wolf – and the refs are going to swallow their whistles more and more because of it.

    AV complained to the NHL that not enough calls were going their way; several months ago he accused another team of “running up the score”. Little surprise that the immediate reaction was that AV is a “whiner” and that he’s looking for any advantage possible.

    Least you think that Crosby and Toews were without criticism over the past few years, they weren’t. I can’t speak for Crosby’s Cup runs because I paid very little attention to either PIT-DET series, but there were certainly plenty of articles about Toews’ “lack of production” in the playoffs last year. He didn’t need to be the one scoring in the Final, though – 2/3 of his team, including several defensemen, put in something like 24 or 25 goals. Toews wasn’t invisible on the ice despite putting together so few assists, though; he won a huge amount of faceoffs, and that was vital for puck possession; and he did a lot more on the ice.

    Vancouver’s case hasn’t been helped by its fan base. Ten years ago, Vancouver wasn’t considered a “hockey market” — the team wasn’t doing well and its fan base dried up. Sports writers practically had to be bribed to taking on Vancouver as an assignment. That, too, has been forgotten as the team resurged during the “West Coast Express” years and especially its most recent success in the past few years. Yet plenty of bandwagon fans have been arrogant and obnoxious to the point of turning off people in other markets. (Winners attract bandwagoners; and if you think VAN has a lot now, give it a week, if they win the Cup.)

    Canadians want to see the Cup “brought home” to Canada, but you can’t expect fans of other teams to magically drop the regular-season competitiveness and suddenly embrace Vancouver as “their” team, just as American fans aren’t necessarily rooting for Boston. It doesn’t help to have various members of the Canucks repeatedly saying “We don’t care what the rest of Canada thinks and we don’t give an eff about what anybody thinks of us.”

    So to sum it all up, yes, there’s bias. It’s been ugly. But at the same time while Vancouver has been painting themselves with the “unfairly wronged” paintbrush, there’s plenty else going on that influenced what others think; long-established viewpoints that aren’t going to disappear simply because they’re on a Cup run; and no attempt by the Canucks to paint themselves as friendly and approachable to anybody except the local media. Sad, but true.

    I can’t resent a team breaking a 40-year drought. I supported underdogs and underachievers for too many years; having my favorite teams bring home the hardware in the past few years has been wondrous and cathartic, so I’ve been-there-done-that. But the perception outside Vancouver is that the team and its fan base has been acting for years like they already have the Cup and that there’s a sense of entitlement. You can’t expect people to change their opinion on that overnight. AV already acknowledged that winning a Cup is “the hardest thing we’ve ever done”. Maybe now that the team knows what it takes, they’ll better respect other teams who’ve done it. Maybe now if the team actually wins the Cup, it’ll soften them up, and they’ll be more approachable and seem less arrogant.

    Or maybe not. We’ll find out in a few days, and in next season.

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    • Mike
      June 13, 2011

      You are way too long-winded for a complete reply to this post. One thing that I have to comment on in your closing paragraph is the bizarre notion that “the team and its fan base has been acting for years like they already have the Cup and that there’s a sense of entitlement.”

      Where does this come from?

      All I see are tens of thousands – make that more than a hundred thousand fans who are aching for there first-ever Stanley Cup. These are the best fans in the NHL. It is truly amazing! A hundred thousand fans in downtown Vancouver cheering for their team. When Donnely sings the national anthem pre-game and all the fans sing along it gives me chills.

      …and we are the most accepting fans too. Aside from the rare but typical morons who like to spoil the party we are used to and accepting of Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Boston fands that have ALWAYS been in our barn. We embrace them too and this is a reflection of our racially and culturally diverse and accepting society.

      By the way, great article and GO CANUCKS!

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    • Anonymous
      June 13, 2011

      “The twins have come across as arrogant for several years”

      “the team and its fan base has been acting for years like they already have the Cup and that there’s a sense of entitlement”

      I don’t understand this at all?

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    • Anonymous
      June 13, 2011

      Also, in this series, for every Canuck dive, I have seen a Bruin one.

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      • Shawn
        June 13, 2011

        Please post examples, with a video if possible.

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  109. Mark Leiren-Young
    June 13, 2011

    Fantastic column. Thanks for sharing this!

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  110. C
    June 13, 2011

    Being a word-nerd Scrabble fan, I found out about this blog through the Tanner Glass Scrabble challenge. Being a literate Canuck fan with an appreciation for good writing, I continued reading PitB on a daily basis.

    I just want to say THANK YOU for saying exactly what is on the minds of Canuck fans with this article, and for doing it so very eloquently.

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  111. David
    June 13, 2011

    Great article. I agree with most fans that the degrading of the Nucks have hampered my enjoyment of the Stanley Cup Final. I was expecting an euphoria of joy and pride in my team making it this far, but instead its been feelings of anger b/c of these “journalists” that have been attacking the players, fans, and the city.

    I have boycotted The Hockey News for Ken Campbell’s ignorant comments on the Nucks:”The Canucks can’t even seem to get respect in their own country, one that hasn’t won a Stanley Cup in 17 years. Many people east of the Rockies see the Canucks as whiners who snap their heads back every time they get hit, others perceive them as thinking they’re the smartest guys in the room. You can probably add headhunter to that list.” http://www.thehockeynews.com/articles/40670-THN-at-the-Stanley-Cup-Rome-hit-on-Horton-worthy-of-suspension-Canucks-effort-shameful.html

    Check out this video from the Toronto Sun on Canucks are Canada’s team debate. He says Toronto sports stores don’t sell Canuck jerseys b/c no one likes them, yet in the background you can see a Canuck jersey! Talk about anti-Canuck propaganda. http://www.torontosun.com/2011/05/17/strobel-the-canucks-are-canadas-team

    I’m disgusted by how juvenile the hockey world is acting towards their dislike towards the Canucks.

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  112. Dee
    June 13, 2011

    Coming back to say that the only thing that will affect the kind of commentary we see on NHL broadcasts is money.

    As a 40-something female hockey fan, I will be writing to the CBC and the NHL, both of whom directly or indirectly employ Milbury. I will be letting them know that I am contacting Dove/Unilever Canada to express my displeasure at their sponsorship of the NHL and advertising on HNIC. Dove has built a solid brand on their ‘empowerment of women and girls’ campaign and I think it’s wholly inappropriate that they underwrite the kind of garbage that Milbury spews about women.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 13, 2011

      Unfortunately, I don’t think this line of reasoning will work. I can just imagine CBC’s response: “Dear Dee, the same company that makes Dove makes Axe Body Spray.”

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  113. DJBALL604
    June 13, 2011

    Best article i’ve read all playoffs. perfect.
    The one sided bush league reffing made me sick last game.
    They served that game up on a platter for Boston.
    it was absurd.
    I’m sick of the cheapshots by all these presstitutes as well,parrots all regurgitating the same horseshit, fuck you all haters.
    Go Vancouver.

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  114. Hex
    June 13, 2011

    just to let you know, i was at rogers arena for game 4 and there’s no defending the fans there.
    it was disgusting to watch our “canucks fans” treat luongo like that.
    some people say it was cheering for letting him get a rest.
    i only got the vibe that they were cheering cuz they get to have schneider in net instead of luongo.
    it’s sickening.
    and when the fans were going nuts, it was schneider being shown on the screen, not rogers arena being shown.

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  115. Jon
    June 13, 2011

    Excellent post, I am so glad someone wrote this.

    I agree that there has been some bias in the media coverage of this series, but I think a lot of what may be perceived as bias is actually the tendency for some in the media to troll the Canuck fan base. People like Damien Cox and Mark Spector write something negative about the team and post it online and link to it through twitter. Canucks fans read it, get angry, and maybe link to it on the Canucks forum or through their own twitter accounts. More people read it and get outraged, but these authors get more hits on their articles and bring traffic to their employers websites. I am not sure they’re biased against the Canucks, but they get publicity from writing these types of articles and are quite happy to get the readership.

    Since the Canucks fan base is so passionate and, dare I say it, has a touch of neurosis fostered by years of disappointment and Tony Gallagher, a lot of people take these kinds of articles personally. In reality, these writers are just taking advantage of Canucks fans, and reading them is like giving candy to a screaming child just to appease them. It’s lowest common denominator stuff, and if as fans we didn’t react to it so strongly then they might stop.

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    • Zipperfish
      June 13, 2011

      “fostered by years of disappointment and Tony Gallagher”

      Brilliant!

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    • Anonymous
      June 13, 2011

      “has a touch of neurosis fostered by years of disappointment and Tony Gallagher”

      haha perfect

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  116. Bryan
    June 13, 2011

    You covered alot and while I agree that the Canucks have taken alot of crap from the media, there is alot that is warranted.

    #1 Your claim that Luongo has outplayed Thomas only makes sense if you haven’t watched any of the games. The quality of chances Vancouver has had in the games is way higher. Thomas has given Boston a chance to win every game in Vancouver and while Vancouver won all 3, anyone can tell you that Luongo had it way easier. Both games in Boston where Thomas was hardly challenged were close games at first and required Thomas to make big saves in the 1st period until the Luongo floodgates opened up in the 2nd period. Luongo’s 2 best games of the playoffs were Games 4 and 5 against SJ, but he gave up some pretty bad goals in Game 1-3. Against Nashville, Rinne and Luongo were the 2 reasons that series was as close as it was. Rinne for making huge saves, Luongo for giving up soft goals. Luongo has been a consistently bad playoff performer and Vancouver winning will me more despite Luongo than because of him. The goal he gave up against the Ducks in 07 to end the series in OT is probably the most embarrassing playoff goal I’ve seen a goalie give up in a long time.

    #2 I agree the Sedin sisters etc comments are not appropriate. And yes, they have had to play against tough Defenseman pairings in this playoffs, but the diving has gotten pretty out of control. Taking a hit and falling to the ice grabbing your face does not belong in hockey. They are absolutely talented players but against SJ and now Boston I’ve seen them dive way too much.

    #3 How can you possibly compare the hit Rome took from McGinn and the one he gave to Horton. Both were not head shots is the only similarity. One is a clearly late open ice hit, where if you watch the replay, Rome changes directions to hit Horton after he has already passed the puck. The other is a borderline boarding call from a McGinn who coasted into Rome, and Rome clearly knew McGinn was coming. No where near as devastating. You can honestly say that 10 random McGinn like boarding hits will result in more injury than 10 random Rome like late open ice hits?

    #4 I agree that the mocking of the biting both Van and Boston got way out of hand. NHL is to blame for that. They should have suspended Burrows the 1 game, and it becoems a non issue. Instead, it tarnished game 2, and the fact that Burrows had a huge game makes it more embarrassing for the NHL. Going back to the Rome hit, I think they threw the book at Rome partly because of that, I said 2-3 games after seeing the Rome hit, so I will agree 4 games is a bit high. Back to the bite, other players may have done it, but that doesn’t make it any less wrong. Burrows has shown throughout the finals from the Lucic entanglement last game, to trying to knock Thomas’s stick out of his hands that he is an ass.

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  117. peter
    June 13, 2011

    Wow, very well written. One point you missed about how “class” Boston is, remember how Ference scored a goal in Montreal in round and fingered the crowd. He then denied ever doing it? I wish we had more journalists that stood up for our team and called Boston out

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  118. Youvegottabekiddingme
    June 13, 2011

    It took you until 2009 to realize sports “journalism” is a joke? It’s always been. There’s a very good reason why real journalists have never taken it seriously, and probably never will.

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  119. Karen
    June 13, 2011

    To throw my two cents in – yes, Vancouver Sun editors. If this was the caliber of writing that was found in print, I might actually buy a newspaper once in a while. Or I’d at least subscribe on my iPad…

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  120. SSmith
    June 13, 2011

    So glad someone finally called the media out on its “unbias” coverage. Brilliant.

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  121. Adam
    June 13, 2011

    What a joke. Right, look to a Canucks blog to show you true bipartisanship. You sound just like your coach and players … WHINERS.

    Take a second to think about WHY the media has decided to hate on the Canucks. They have been taking cheap shots, dives, bites all series and acting classless in interviews. THAT is why nearly everyone watching this series hates them. And it takes a lot to do that… I never would have thought a team could manage to shift popular sentiment in favor of a Boston team, but these hacks have managed to do it. For them to defend Rome while the Bruins’ top scorer is laid up in the hospital shows about how much class they have. And Luongo, the siev, isn’t fit to hold Thomas’s garter belt.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 13, 2011

      I wonder what has helped shape this opinion? Who are the people who sway popular sentiment? Who chooses what to show in the highlight packages and on replays? I encourage you to think about how the media coverage of the playoffs has shaped your opinion of the team and its players and consider that perhaps your opinion is not as wholly your own as you would like to think.

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    • peanutflower
      June 13, 2011

      just for the record on a little trivial point, Horton never even spent the night in hospital and was happily walking in the park the next day, where he was interviewed.

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    • Anonymous
      June 13, 2011

      “They have been taking cheap shots, dives, bites all series and acting classless in interviews.”

      Unlike the Bruins? Interesting.

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    • JS Topher
      June 13, 2011

      And it was Rome who splashed the fans in the stands with his water just prior to throwing it, correct?
      Still raggin on Lu though, eh? Check this out http://www.isthisyourhomework.com/not-in-my-house-not-on-my-land/

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  122. NucksFan
    June 13, 2011

    All this and you have the most biased personality rooting for your team. John Garrett (who has picked the Canucks a solid 17 years in a row)

    Garrett should be off of TV and if you want to rid bias from media you might as well start with the worst guy in sports…John Garrett.

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    • cc
      June 13, 2011

      You didn’t get it. Garrett is biased, yes, but he never pretends not to be. The point is journalists who say they report without bias, and proceed to rip the Canucks anyway.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 13, 2011

      Hahaha, you’re totally right about Garrett, though. He’s such a homer.

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  123. Adam
    June 13, 2011

    And how ironic is it that any “bias” comments on this column are getting hidden by the moderator.

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    • J Walter Weatherman
      June 13, 2011

      Good grief. A comment gets hidden if it gets many “thumbs down” FROM THE READERS. The explanation is right there on the hidden comment message. Someone needs to be borderline illiterate not to get this.

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      • Harrison Mooney
        June 13, 2011

        AND THAT’S WHY YOU ALWAYS LEAVE A NOTE

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        • Spencer
          June 13, 2011

          Nice, Arrested Development is applicable to everything!

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      • Anonymous
        June 13, 2011

        You must be new.

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  124. blog21
    June 13, 2011

    Didn’t get past your slam on Christians and faith (like, the first paragraph — waiver in faith and go straight to hell??). I think you should better understand that faith before you straw-man it. Try reading about Moses, David, Job, the Apostles. All of them had questioning times.

    But perhaps subtlety and understanding aren’t your thing.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 13, 2011

      But apparently being judgmental and jumping to conclusions are your thing.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 13, 2011

      Perhaps tongue-in-cheek comments aren’t your thing. I’m a Christian, guy.

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  125. cc
    June 13, 2011

    I couldn’t read all the comments, but what about the Boston restaurant refusing to serve the three Canucks? (I forget which ones), but the media brought that to attention…then proceeded to talk about more about classless Vancouver fans/players.

    The other one that bothers me is Pierre McGuire…he continually calls TD Garden the loudest playoff building, but if you look at the decibel readings posted on NHL.com, they are neck and neck with the Canucks. Like within two decibels. It’s sad because it’s like you said…he is obviously biased towards Boston, but he just can’t admit that and deal with it.

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    • Stephen
      June 13, 2011

      Prehaps, from where he is standing and the building design, it appears to him as if it is louder, thus him saying so.

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    • Maple Leafer
      June 14, 2011

      Wow, now false reports of Restaurant snubs should outweigh the truth.

      Laughable

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  126. D
    June 13, 2011

    This team isn’t making it easy. Face it, guys like Burrows and Lapierre garner scorn no matter what team they play for. They were already loathed. Biting and taunting didn’t just open the door to the villain narrative, it rolled out the red carpet. No one wants to see that in the SCF, and Maxim made it worse by keeping the story alive in game 2. Counter-mockery in revenge is never going to be viewed the same way.

    The Sedins are being unfairly attacked, and I suspect it has a lot to do with anti-European player sentiment. Milbury is clearly a raving idiot who should be fired on the spot. But the Sedins have also taken embellishment to another level, which made them even bigger targets.

    Add that to some choice soundbites — especially since the Bruins seem to have a better handle on knowing what to say in this series — and the Canucks aren’t really helping their own case. However, I do think that anti-Nuck bias in other outlets is counterbalanced by the coverage they receive at home. The rest of the world doesn’t need to like them.

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    • goddol
      June 13, 2011

      I couldn’t agree more with this comment. The author seems to be pretending that Burrows’ bite and Lapierre’s finger waving and embellishing of the ‘spear’ are the only two reasons people call them classless. Both players have a long history of being jerks, and pretending they don’t (or ignoring it, whichever was done here) is incredibly irresponsible for a journalist complaining about bias.

      While maybe Daniel Sedin has been unfairly criticized, Henrik has taken at least 4 absolutely brutal dives during the playoffs that make a mockery of the game. Has any other Stanley Cup winning captain ever done anything like this?

      Beyond that, Kesler’s attitude practically begs the media to dislike him, and Bieksa jumped Victor Stahlberg, no matter how you want to paint it. The Canucks are just an easy team to dislike. Stop crying that it’s because of bias.

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      • Anonymous
        June 13, 2011

        “Has any other Stanley Cup winning captain ever done anything like this?”

        Google ‘Sidney Crosby dive’

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        • goddol
          June 19, 2011

          While Sidney certainly has embellished in his career, he never took it to the level Henrik did. Taking a love tap and falling clutching your mid-section like you’ve been shot goes beyond diving. It’s just disgraceful.

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    • vancityt
      June 13, 2011

      Before your comment gets hidden and discussion–real, reasonable discussion–gets quieted (this system is not conducive to discussion, just rah-rahs), I’d like to respond to this. Harrison’s smart piece deserves some thoughtful consideration.

      Last night Bob McKenzie tweeted (or replied to a very biased BostonUnite) that every team feels a bias in the national media, meanwhile not giving any credence whatsoever to the possibility of bias (implying HM was calling it a conspiracy when he clearly was not, and made that explicit point). Herein lies the rub: thoughtful sports commentary is difficult to find. Big media will not look objectively at their own part in it, as they’ve little to gain from doing so. As Daniel’s point above (now hidden: argh) eloquently makes: “I wonder what has helped shape this opinion? Who are the people who sway popular sentiment? Who chooses what to show in the highlight packages and on replays? I encourage you to think about how the media coverage of the playoffs has shaped your opinion of the team and its players and consider that perhaps your opinion is not as wholly your own as you would like to think.”

      Having said all that, it is important to look at what the Canucks have done/not done to further this bias against them. Some of their behaviours, I agree, haven’t helped. But what is really at the root of this is newby-ism. They don’t seem to have a mute button, or media filter, when they’re under this kind of spotlight for the first time. Along with sleep experts, they needed top PR folks. Luongo’s comments taken out of context–finally he’s decided to stop talking to the media–and now Hamhuis’s comment taken out of context (why did he talk before the final game for crying out loud?), has begun to refuel the fire.

      Seriously, whatever the outcome of the Finals, the Canucks need to do some work on the PR and the mental fortitude. This clearly will not be the last time they’ll be in the running for the Cup.

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  127. Jay
    June 13, 2011

    Bullshit article. The Canucks are all babies and sissies. The most unpopular team outside of Hongcouver. 27 million people can’t be wrong. Dream on about you suck hole team and fans

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    • MMc
      June 13, 2011

      Your evident racism does nothing but nullify the point you were trying–albeit very poorly–to make.

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    • Anonymous
      June 13, 2011

      Ignoring the blatant racism and just dumb comment, I do have to wonder what ’27 million people’ he’s talking about.

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  128. Paul
    June 13, 2011

    This is great journalism!
    If the Sedins are Thelma & Louise of hockey, Mike Milbury is the Ishtar of broadcasting. Worst ever!!!

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  129. DJBALL604
    June 13, 2011

    The Sedins have been hacked , slashed and crosschecked so many times that future generations of Swedish hockey players will be shown the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals as a training aid for what to expect playing in the National (Bush) Hockey League.

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  130. Chicky
    June 13, 2011

    Finally, an article that lays it out on the line about the bias in the media from both sides of the border.

    Thanks Harrison. I found a “lovely” beaut on the weekend that Weeks’ had posted on NHL.com. He basically sensationalized Lu’s comments about Thomas’s play, and used them completely out of context. This is the reason why I can’t even bother trying to read anything else online.

    Simply disgusting, and not worth my time.

    This however is worthy for everyone to read. Brava!

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  131. John Q Public
    June 13, 2011

    The truth as much as you in Vancouver might not want to believe it is that it is you against everyone else. You are the only ones who think this way. There is a reason we are hearing from the rest of the country and league that so many do not want your team to win. Your team is inherently unlikeable and they continue to give us reasons not to like them over and over again. I don’t think I have ever seen a team on the verge of being so close to finally winning their first championship and yet be so universally disliked. It is not because the other 95% of hockey is just imagining these things. Usually a team finally gets there and we are happy for them. Why is that not the case with this team? Maybe it is because of who they are and what they are.

    Articles like this whining about it are a source of laughter for the rest of the hockey world. And believe me everyone else is having a good laugh at it today. I don’t know if anyone took Mr. Mooney seriously as a journalist before today but after today I would have to say it is not likely.

    What you should do is embrace it. Recognize that it is what it is and wear it as a badge of honor. Why do you care? The people who don’t like your team aren’t fans of them anyway. You are going to win or lose no matter what they say. If you win you can always say you stuck it to them. Just accept that this is the way your team is, but you root for them anyway.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 13, 2011

      I like the Canucks. I find them eminently likable.

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    • Spencer
      June 13, 2011

      Sorry dude, I know the majority of my family in the rest of Canada and overseas (born and raised Ontario-ites) are cheering for the Canucks. Generalizations will get you no-where.

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    • Anonymous
      June 13, 2011

      It’s weird that so many people are talking about whining but I see no whining in this article.

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    • JS Topher
      June 13, 2011

      Not sure if anyboyd’s been taking Mooney seriously after this article eh? I think you might wanna take a look at the incredibly long list of comments and +/- ratings on said comments. Looks to me like PiTB just hit the big time!

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  132. Dan
    June 13, 2011

    Great Article!!!

    For the record. I was at Rogers Arena for Game 4 and when Roberto got pulled and Schneider went in the crowd did cheer but is wasn’t because we don’t love Roberto. It’s because we also love Cory. We were getting killed for 2 straight games and we would have cheered for just about anything because there wasn’t much else to cheer about up to that point.

    I was so pissed-off when that got painted as we don’t care for Luongo.

    Without him we wouldn’t be here talking about any of this.

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    • DC
      June 13, 2011

      I think you omitted the part where the fans Booed Luo. I’ve got friends that are die hard Vancouver fans and they don’t have any faith in Loungo. I don’t agree with that but I’ve seen it before. Seems like no one can replace Kirk Mclean.

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      • vancityt
        June 13, 2011

        A ‘die-hard’ fan would have faith in Luongo. ‘Faith’ is implicit in the phrase ‘die-hard.’

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      • Anonymous
        June 13, 2011

        No one ever reported people booed Lu? Where did you get that from?

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  133. Brian Bailey
    June 13, 2011

    Awesome! I have been fuming about the Boston coverage, ESPN, SI, NBC, even CBC. TSN does a decent job. So-called “articles” which call Luongo a “pariah” are a complete joke. That’s slander and libelous at best. Thelma and Louise? A shameful comment. Whose fans got physically attacked in large numbers in Boston? The Canucks. Whose fans were urinated on, had beer spilt on them, spit on, had pepper thrown at them (3 lovely teen age girls no less)? Canucks fans. Did this happen to Boston fans in Vancouver? NO. And yet we are the classless fans? Give me a break. I know that there are many classy Bruins fans and I know that there are some Vancouver fans who are yahoos. But when I don’t read a single positive story in the US press about Vancouver it’s obvious there is tremendous US media bias and unobjective reporting. Don’t you guys understand fairness. Don’t you have any media standards? Oh, I forgot – you’re the nation where Fox news is taken seriously…

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  134. John
    June 13, 2011

    Excellent, excellent article.

    We know all about the “fan”atical rage that Boston sports fans are known for. They love their teams as much as we do. Unfortunately for us, the Bruins are the “flavour of the month” right now. Therefore, we get journalists specializing in “sexy” Tom Brady and those heroic Sox contributing articles on a sport that they only have a passing knowledge of, while pandering to their local readers.

    The rest of Canada is just jealous and….. I can live with that. I’d rather our team be vilified publicly, while privately admired, than ignored and pitied.

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  135. Jesse
    June 13, 2011

    Fantastic article, Harrison. Got me even more fired up for tonight than I already was, and even prouder to be a Canucks fan.

    One question, which perhaps you have some ideas on (I have none): can you explain the media bias against Luongo? You mention how praised and lauded Crosby and Toews were in the last two finals due to their Canadian-ness… Luongo helped Canada win Olympic gold, for goodness’ sake! Why you no like Roberto, CBC? Do you figure it’s purely because he’s a Canuck?

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  136. bergberg
    June 13, 2011

    Wow! So many comments!

    I just wanted to say that I can’t understand for the life of me where this “Canucks not Canada’s team” media coverage is coming from. As a Vancouverite living in Ottawa, I know a ton of Sens fans, Habs fans, and Leafs fans. Every single one of them is cheering for a Vancouver victory. The only people not cheering for the Canucks seem to be either legitimate Bruins fans (fair enough) and Flames fans (oh dear lord, they drive me crazy).

    Here’s hoping the Canucks win the cup for all their fans across Canada!

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  137. Bob H
    June 13, 2011

    Maybe the Canucks are disliked because:

    1. Burrows bit Bergeron. Only Canucks homers see that as anything other than bush league.
    2. Lapierre taunted the Bruins over the biting incident in Game 2.
    3. Rome took out Horton with a late hit to the head then blamed the victim.

    Just thinking aloud here.

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  138. DC
    June 13, 2011

    Here is a link of Maxime when he played for Montreal. Were the commentators biased against him as a HAB? Or is he just dirty and gutless?

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 13, 2011

      Love that the guy getting into it with Lapierre is Manny Malhotra. Clearly, he got over it. You should too.

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      • DC
        June 13, 2011

        Harrison,

        That’s your response? I’m supposed to take you as unbiased? (yes, I know you don’t mind being called a homer) You and other Canuck fans will be happy when they don’t re sign him this summer. He brings down your team. Like Sean Avery in NY, Darcy Tucker (when in Toronto), Ruutu, Matt Cooke, etc.

        I still have a hard time with you thinking that there is an anti Canucks sentiment. Do you watch the games on CBC? Jim Hughson calling games is very one sided.

        As for your comments about Tim Thomas and Luongo, well I could write an essay about them. I’ll keep it short though, Thomas is first in SP% and GAA and deserves the praise. Luongo is 6th. VANCOUVER fans BOOED him at Rogers Arena and Cheered when Cory was put in. Why? Because he wasn’t very good.

        The Canucks are probably going to win (either tonight or Wednesday) the CUP, so can Vancouver fans please enjoy that and try NOT to be sore winners!!!

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        • Spencer
          June 13, 2011

          I was at Rogers Arena. There was no booing for Luongo. There was cheering for a good coaching decision.

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          • DC
            June 13, 2011

            Spencer, a good coaching decision would’ve been to pull him after 4. I can tell that there are only Vancouver fans posting on here, that’s why there are so many dislikes to a truthful post. I’m not a fan of either team, so I don’t have a bias. I can say that Vancouver is the better team (can’t argue numbers) and Thomas is going to win the Vezina and probably the Conn Smythe proving that he’s the better goalie.

            Anyway, this will all be moot by Wednesday night.

            DC

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            • Spencer
              June 13, 2011

              I think I misread your post, I was referring to when the CBC cut to Rogers arena in Game 4 showing fans cheering for the switch in that game.

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  139. Justin
    June 13, 2011

    @bergberg

    I know that the Canucks are largely supported by Winnipeg because many of its players came from the Manitoba Moose. I also heard that Saskatoon likes the Canucks too.

    But apparently Toronto and Alberta speaks for the rest of Canada.

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  140. PeeSeeGee
    June 13, 2011

    On the coverage of Luongo versus Thomas, someone on Twitter put it very succinctly this moring. Take both of them out and where do we stand? Bruins are still losing 2-3 without Thomas but the Canucks aren’t winning those close games without Luongo.

    Great article.

    I also fail to understand how people call the Sedin’s soft. Based on the number of cross checks they take each game, they are some of the toughest players out there. Yes they don’t fight, yes the fall down (though as we saw on the Eager hit, they get back up pretty quickly) but soft they are not! I would fall down if Zdeno Chara slashed my ankles too, I probably wouldn’t be up as quickly though.

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  141. Boon
    June 13, 2011

    Winning > Everything Else.

    Canucks = Winning more than Boston

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  142. Zipperfish
    June 13, 2011

    I was watching Game 4 at the Rogers Arena. That was a 4-0 loss to Boston. Ther wasn’t much to cheer for. Maybe some folks were cheering that Luongo was chased out of the net, but a lot of us were cheering for Corey Schneider.

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  143. Zipperfish
    June 13, 2011

    Anyways, so they hate us. Big deal. You know what fans of other clubs hate? Teams that beat them. This isn’t the ’82 or ’94 cup run where we were the loveable underdogs. This is a team that dominated in the regular season and delivered (thus far) in the playoffs. I hated the boring New Jersey Devils, I hated the Claude Lemieux Colorado Avalanche, I hated the smug Detroit.

    Good teams are hated. Underdogs get a free pass. So be it.

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    • DC
      June 13, 2011

      Great comment. You’re totally correct and that’s why most people hate the Yankee, but it’s also why so many love them, because they win. I don’t necessarily agree with the SMUG Detroit part as I feel that this Vancouver team is built in a similar fashion and plays a similar game.

      DC

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  144. Bill
    June 13, 2011

    Best article I’ve read since the playoffs started.

    Why is it when Luongo was playing for Florida he was considered one of the best goalies in the world, but since coming to the Canucks the media is all over him?

    Luongo has 1 World Cup gold, 2 World Championship golds and 1 Olympic gold. If he wins a Stanley cup he’ll be the first goaltender to be in the triple gold club by winning by winning the Stanley Cup, World Championships and Olympics. He would be 1 of only 3 players in history to win all four major championships.

    The Sedins are the perfect example of what role models should be. They are world class athletes and gentlemen. I can’t understand how the Canucks can be painted as villains and in the same breath the Sedins are called “soft”, “sisters”, “Thelma and Louise”… Damned if they do, damned if they don’t.

    The Aarom Rome hit. All I can say is Scott Stevens was considered a hero for much worse. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7U7jUbKQYdw

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    • Joe
      June 13, 2011

      LOL, times have changed. Stevens big hits wouldn’t be so popular these days. And if Luongo’s such an all-star, and historically so great, why did he get benched game six???

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      • kim r
        June 13, 2011

        Maybe a wake up call to the whole team? Dunno. Since I watched the games (did you?) I saw an entire team playing badly.

        But since you seem to be very concerned about it, why not go find AV and ask him.

        Damn. These are pretty bad trolls. The st00pid is strong in them and too easy to smack around.

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        • Joe
          June 14, 2011

          LOL, you’re right, it had nothing to do with Luongo at all. Nice game last night, maybe the coach should send another wake-up call to the team, and bench him again.

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  145. Andrew
    June 13, 2011

    You sound like a jilted ex-lover… wah, wah, wah, woe is me, everybody’s out to get me… Grow up, and stop wasting your time with stories like this. Nobody outside of Vancouver cares.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 13, 2011

      It appears that everyone inside of Vancouver cares. So that’s nice.

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      • Andrew
        June 13, 2011

        Haha, you say that like it’s a good thing – to an outsider, it appears everybody’s simply embracing their feelings of insecurity and paranoia. But I guess sports fans in general get off on that more than actual winning.

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        • Chicky
          June 13, 2011

          I’m assuming you wouldn’t lump yourself in with sports fans, so if that’s the case WHY are you here reading a sports blog?

          If you’re lost, you may want to check out http://www.nhl.com for those who may care about your comments.

          Go back to the village you come from. Ta Ta!

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          • Andrew
            June 13, 2011

            See Chicky, that’s your insecurity talking! Let’s see if we can get some paranoia into your next point!!

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            • Chicky
              June 13, 2011

              This was a well-thought, well written article about media and it’s biases. You obviously don’t get it. You’re very obvious, can you at least be more entertaining?

              Try. Please for my sake.

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              • Andrew
                June 14, 2011

                LOL, Well thought/blatantly biased, what’s the difference, right chickypoo? Nice game from Luongo last night, you must be pumped for game 7… hahahaha.

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              • Dale
                June 16, 2011

                I think Chickypoo is crying. Sad Chickypoo.

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    • kim r
      June 13, 2011

      Hmmm. Let’s see. This is a blog mainly on the Vancouver Canucks and you seem to think it’s important that “nobody outside of Vancouver cares”.

      Linear thinking isn’t your strong suit, is it?

      It really doesn’t say much about YOU that YOU are coming here to troll and you can’t even get your trolling points in order.

      Personally, I took this article to just prove that most of the media are integrity-less scumbags, but that’s just me. I don’t think they are “out to get me”, just that they can’t be bothered with good things like integrity and fairness. Doesn’t matter if it’s hockey or any other sport or even day to day news.

      Hopefully, you understood this. I tried to type slow and use smaller words.

      Have a nice day!

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  146. jimbob
    June 13, 2011

    hear. hear, one of your best yet!

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  147. shoes
    June 13, 2011

    great read Harrison. I have never thought that the NHL or CBC is out to “screw” the Canucks BUT I KNOW that their is personal bias and hatred. I have no doubt that Colin Campbell had influence on the “new rule” of the Rome suspension, whether or he was consulted or not. I also know that much of the media is either based out of Alberta or previously had some connection to the two Alberta teams. I expect and welcome their hatred. What I can’t stand is when the whole bunch of them “pretends” to be unbiased…but only criticizes the Canucks for various indiscretions, such as mocking, embellishing or complaining. By and large the Canucks are the only team this entire post season that went to the box without argument with the officials AND they have for whatever reason been assessed more penalties than any other opponent in every series after they got ahead by 2 wins. The NHL refs are inconsistent at best and biased against certain players at worst. It is disgusting and embarrassing in either case, BUT will be all the sweeter when the Canucks win;. On another note the Canucks had best wear padding on the back of their calfs today as the refs are completely oblivious to the rather blatant ankle wacking from behind. If the Canucks have to embellish a smidge to get an obvious infraction called, so be it and the small wee man that runs the NHL should step up and take ownership of his pathectic League operations office and straighten out the game to where all teams and all players are guaranteed respect by the league officials. Not just players that call Colin “daddy”

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  148. Chris
    June 13, 2011

    “I think he has to be happy with his career. He did a great job on Long Island. I’m sure he is happy with that.”

    Thanks Henrik, for possibly the most perfectly crafted, yet understated insult that I’ve ever heard in hockey. Proof that amongst the hordes of knuckle-draggers in the world of hockey, you and your brother remain a couple of intelligent and insightful gentlemen.

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    • Zipperfish
      June 13, 2011

      In this case, _inciteful_ gentlemen?

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  149. Shiner
    June 13, 2011

    Thanks Harrison. As a supporter of neither of these teams but a fan of hockey, thank you. I was beginning to feel like I was taking crazy pills.

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  150. bighummus
    June 13, 2011

    Does anybody remember Bertuzzi or May? This team has been hated for a while, they just haven’t been in the spotlight for much beyond negativity since 1994.

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    • DThrelly
      June 14, 2011

      So, do you hate the Red Wings now? Would they be under the negative scrutiny that the Canucks players are if they had made it to the cup? How about Chara’s hit earlier this season? Bertuzzi is, was and always will be a goon, but you cannot apply his cowardly conduct almost a decade ago in this context. I enjoy good-natured back and forth between fans, but this year the media has irresponsibly incited hatred and derision. Check out J MacMullan latest piece on ESPN… it is just sad. Bad for hockey and bad for the fans.

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  151. KM
    June 13, 2011

    Thank you for so intelligently continuing the public dialogue on the sexism issue, it’s all too often ignored by players, fans and reporters. You do an excellent job of connecting it to national prejudices as well (and of course it’s also tied up in sexuality as a slur). As a woman and a feminist and a hockey fan, it’s great to read something like this.

    (PS: As a Chicagoan and Blackhawks fan, I apologize for existence of Barry Rozner. He’s a complete and total embarrassment to the city and the epitome of classlessness.)

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  152. CanucksfanfromOhio
    June 13, 2011

    Thank you. Vancouver is my backup team (Kesler!) because the Blue Jackets have and will always suck, and its been great to see the Canucks play so well, but the media coverage has been so pro-Boston it makes me want to throw things. I blame ESPN.

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  153. Rich Curtis
    June 13, 2011

    Harrison I have shared this on my FB page and in turn had it linked/shared from there several times now. A great read. You and I are on the same page top to bottom on this and I follow or read many of the sports journalists you mention or alluded to. Cheers to you my friend. A beacon of sense in the fog of asinine diatribes masked as neutral reporting.

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  154. Chris
    June 13, 2011

    You never explained why everyone has this bias against Vancouver. Why is it that everyone looks at this team and thinks the same thing? Because it’s 100% true that Burrows is a hair-pulling, finger biting punk, the Sedins dive more than anyone in the NHL, and Luongo is a weak-minded crybaby. Everyone hates this team for a reason.

    By the way, I’m not at all a fan of the Bruins. I know it won’t matter if you guys raise the Cup (which I think you will) but it bothers me that a team that the Canucks can succeed.

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  155. BandwagonBurner
    June 13, 2011

    The bias that I see is against the Nucks top 3 forwards. He mentions Kesler, who when playing in the Olympics made no bones about the fact that he “hates Canada”. Kind of hard to like the guy as a non-Nuck fan. While the Sedins are great, they are one-dimensional players, who dont kill penalties…a trait that has been accustomed to EVERY captain or great player of past Stanley Cup Champions, INCLUDING the likes of Swedish forward Zetterberg. They just don’t produce as well in hard nosed traffic areas, especially against Norris Trophy candidates/winners…the latter part of the sentence can’t be argued. As far as Burrows goes, his actions on the ice speak for themselves. This is the same guy that was singled out for making an official look bad one night. As right or wrong as that official was, we know he (burrows) did it, has done it & will probably do it again. Lapierre was a clown before he came to Van, but proved in Montreal & here in Van can be a very usable, antagonistic player in certain situations and besides, I think all of us would have liked to ask Burnside’s question to ANY particular player at some point. As for Loungo goes, when his “so called fans” cheer EVERYTIME he gets pulled in a blowout only shows the love/hate affair Nucks fans have with their goalie. Throughout these playoffs, Thomas’ numbers dont lie. He’s never been pulled, never not started, has better numbers then Lou @ home & on the road.

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  156. Alex
    June 13, 2011

    You make a convincing argument but it’s based in the false assumption that everyone is out to get the Nucks. Respect is earned not given. Ever wonder why some of these sports journalists have turned so “biased” against the Canucks? For what possible reason would a guy like Milbury, who works at the same station as Jim Hughson, have to speak out against the Sedins as he has? You use the government conspiracy comparison but there’s no underlying anti-Vancouver motive here. The Canucks have simply turned many hockey journos and fans alike against them with their douchebaggery and gutless antics.

    You say Scott Burnside showed no class in questioning Lapierre on, by your own admission, his dive, or at least “not his finest moment.” This statement really rubbed me the wrong way. Burnside saw what everyone else saw and good on him for calling Lapierre on it. This is what we need more of in hockey media and not less; the media should play a role in holding players accountable for their actions on the ice. It’s not “classless” at all. And again, I have to ask the question, what possible hidden anti-Canucks agenda could Burnside possibly own? Lapierre’s antics rubbed him the wrong way and he called him on it. I’m glad some journalists are showing the balls to ask the tough (and right) questions. Besides, it’s a lot better to read and watch than the same mundane crap like “how did winning the game feel? Are you happy you won Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals?”

    I never blame fans for being fans, and viewing things partially. If I was born in Vancouver I would probably be right there with you and applauding this piece like most are here. But if you have ever played a competitive sport in your life, you have probably played against that team that is just full of d-bags, they dive, they cheat, they play dirty. That’s the Canucks to me.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 13, 2011

      “For what possible reason would a guy like Milbury, who works at the same station as Jim Hughson, have to speak out against the Sedins as he has?”

      He’s paid to create controversy? That’s a pretty good reason. Here’s another reason: he’s a bigoted tool.

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  157. yikers
    June 13, 2011

    Yeah, I have no dog is this fight, but have been loving these finals and cheering for the Canucks. Just like the team better.

    But this attitude…yikes. Witty writing, but you can’t seriously believe all this? Really?

    Commentators have been blasting (and hiding) opposing viewpoints on here, but I’ll offer up a couple of counters from a (you’ll have to take my word for it) neutral observer:

    - Those potshots at the Sedins are unfair and ugly, but they’re the extreme, not the norm. Most analysts and fans say it more simply: the Sedins should be more productive than they’ve been. Sedins — play better.

    - And of course people questioned Crosby. In the exact same unfair way. I honestly don’t see how anyone could claim otherwise.

    - Chara’s hit on MP was brutal. You can cherry pick and find people who call it clean, but come on — that is not the prevailing view.

    - You can prop up Rome’s intent all you want, but are you really surprised that a suspenion comes out of that? Shoulder to head, head to ice, concussion. The NHL is going to consider a suspension every time.

    - No, people were not generally dismissing Luongo’s performance in games 1 and 2. Searching and finding extreme viewpoints is not the same as reporting on the consensus coverage.

    - Is the “media” really saying that LaPierre’s mocking was classless but that Lucic’s was fine? Just sounds like typical fan complaining.

    - Cutting to the backup goalie after goals? Do you watch sports outside of Canucks’ games? This is constant.

    - Barry Rozner – not much to say there except that he explicitly hates your team with his entire angry soul. You can’t project him onto the media as a whole. Analysts are going to label teams as thugs – the Canucks aren’t the first and won’t be the last.

    If the whole article is sarcasm, I apologize. Otherwise, c’mon, this is silly. This is no conspiracy or international program of hatred or bias.

    I’m cheering for the Canucks tonight, and I think they’ll do it. That offense is finally going to explode and win big. And then you’ll forget all of this nonsense.

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  158. MattinDC
    June 13, 2011

    Even as a jaded Capitals fan who hasn’t had the stomach to totally get back on board with the Stanley Cup Playoffs since our swift demise, I have noticed some strange and unexplainable anti-Vancouver sentiment in the sports media about this series. Granted, it has mostly been by talking heads on ESPN who have probably watched less than 5 full hockey games in the past year. Still though, it has been upsetting to see so much bias against the Canucks (who I admired throughout this season) by journalists who use the guise of impartiality.

    From what I have gathered, the Bruins have been just as classless (if not more) than the Canucks throughout this series…and any person (journalist or not) who wants to paint Zdeno Chara in a positive light and use him as an example of respectability or class seriously needs to have their head examined.

    Overall, outstanding article. I especially liked how you attempted to dismiss the Don Cherry double standard that seems to perpetuate throughout Canada with regards to Canadian born players versus American or European born players. As a fan of a team loaded with Russian and European players I was always pertrubed as to how they can be lambasted and given a reputation as somehow being both soft and thugs simultaneously. Thanks for the insight and hopefully this article can open up some eyes.

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  159. Seriously?
    June 13, 2011

    Dude, were you at the postgame presser? Not only was Burnside’s question relevant, it was funny as hell. The entire room chuckled, INCLUDING Lapierre. There wasn’t anything classless about it. This blog used to be more entertaining before you and Daniel started taking yourselves so seriously. Try to lighten up a bit.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 13, 2011

      You haven’t been reading PITB long enough if you don’t know that this has always been what we do: we write both serious and humorous articles. Heck, just a few days ago Harrison posted a collaboration with Chloe Ezra depicting Tim Thomas re-painting his crease as big as the defensive zone. That was pretty light. This wasn’t. If you care to stick around, get used to a mixture of the serious and humorous.

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      • Harrison Mooney
        June 13, 2011

        Daniel’s right. We’re the James L. Brooks of hockey blogs. We want to make you laugh, sure, but we also want to move you.

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        • What the Canuck?
          June 13, 2011

          This one made me laugh ,can’t wait to be moved

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          • Daniel Wagner
            June 13, 2011

            You have a weird sense of humor.

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  160. Zen Wu
    June 13, 2011

    Harrison, great read. Now living in Atlantic Canada, I enjoy a spin through the various media as replacement for the water cooler conversations I would enjoy back home. I save PITB for last, and normally appreciate the steak you deliver. But wow, today you served it up Morton’s style. I hope you get your own locker there because on rare occasions such as this the commentary is as good as the game itself!

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  161. What the Canuck?
    June 13, 2011

    I guess the author would prefer the people just say the Sedins can’t play well against top notch defensive players. Calling them the “sisters” is just less wordy and equally descriptive. Either way the European players on the Bruins haven’t seen this type of drastic drop off. Maybe that’s why they aren’t being labelled as soft even though they are European.

    The reason the Canucks are receiving the type of press coverage they have is simply because they have earned it. They’ll still win the cup and it will be well deserved and earned as well.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 13, 2011

      Calling them “sisters” is less wordy and exponentially more offensive.

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      • What the Canuck?
        June 13, 2011

        so unfair *sniff*

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        • Daniel Wagner
          June 13, 2011

          Either you’re crying and PITB has successfully moved you or you are attempting to be funny by implying that I am whining. If the latter is the case, I’m shocked you haven’t called me a girl yet. Isn’t that what girls do? Whine? Or is that a sexist generalization that should have been eradicated from our social parlance decades ago?

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        • Bill
          June 13, 2011

          So, sexism is OK by you, is it?

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  162. mike
    June 13, 2011

    CBC being anti-vancouver? Have you watched any of the games? Who does the play-by-play again? This is so ridiculous….and if Glen Healy cheers for Vancouver any harder I am going to throw up.

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  163. Tea Nicola
    June 13, 2011

    Totally agree! It is quite sad when Don Cherry is the voice of reason and non-bias. Despite the fact that we are playing his beloved Bruins. I am disappointed by everyone, but he has pleasantly surprised me.

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    • Bill
      June 13, 2011

      Yeah, ain’t that a kick in the head? Cherry is the voice of reason.

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    • vcr orcan
      June 14, 2011

      So true. The one colour commentator who has an obvious dog in the fight is the guy who isn’t throwing Luongo under the bus at every turn. After the ridiculous sideshow of the last few days over Luongo’s comments about Lapierre’s goal on Thomas, Cherry is the guy who comes out and says people are selectively quoting Luongo to create a tempest in a teapot and not assessing Luongo’s remarks in their entirety. The non-journalist is the one who has to point this out. Kinda makes you wonder what the trained journalists have been doing…

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  164. Tara
    June 13, 2011

    Thanks for writing this article Harrison. I am glad you have voiced my objections in a far more articulate and knowledgeable manner than I could. I was surprised that I actually agreed with everything you had to say since I was sure you’d come up with at least one weak argument to nullify everything you had to say. But you didn’t!

    During these playoffs, I have particularly taken exception to the label, “Sedin sisters.” It is offensive and ignorant on so many levels. And on an international level, I have lived in Sweden for several years, and I am humiliated that we North Americans are so low and classless as to question the manliness of the Sedins in absence of any legitimate criticism. I hang my head down in shame that our society is so petty, superficial and above all sexist. Our North American nations may be monetarily richer, but their European nations are culturally, and now I have to admit, intellectually richer.

    At least now, thanks to you, I have a great comeback to shut up anyone ignorant enough to utter the “Sedin sisters” insult in my presence! Thanks again :)

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  165. Will
    June 13, 2011

    I live in Tennessee and the coverage in the US has been just as bad, on NBC/Versus they sound like they work for the Bruins. I must say that the play-by-play man is good, just calls the game.

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  166. vcr orcan
    June 14, 2011

    Great read. You should be writing on ESPN, so that there could be some balance to the anti-Canuck vitriol from the likes of Scott Burnside. And his bias probably comes in 3 levels: anti-Canuck, anti-west coast team, and anti-Canadian team, not necessarily in that order. Like you say, it’s fine that he has an opinion…after all, who doesn’t? But it’s the facade of impartiality in the face of overt bias that is hard to take.

    It’s refreshing to read an opinion piece where you state your opinion, and actually provide examples to support that opinion. And you actually address both sides of the issue. You would think that’s journalism 101, which is evidently not a prerequisite course for working at many news outlets.

    Well done. Keep up the great work.

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  167. Rob C.
    June 14, 2011

    Agreed with the post. With Don Cherry I know he’s for Boston. Not pretending. Jim Hughson is for the Canucks, but he feels the need to pretend that he’s neutral. From BC, called Canucks games for years. I don’t hold it against him. He should be for Vancouver. Pressure of ‘you can’t admit the truth’ which gets sillier every year.

    Oh, since I’m from Newfoundland having the term ‘East Coast bias’ referring to Toronto always makes us laugh. Didn’t know T.O. was near the Atlantic Ocean. One of those terms we just let roll off our backs.

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  168. alamin
    June 14, 2011

    As with most others, I would like to add my sincere gratitude for a great article. It’s been causing me sleepless nights scouring the internet to find something positive being said about the Canucks and calling out CBC and the rest of the media. From the day the Sedin’s set foot in Vancouver they have been absolute gentlemen. They are courteous and generous to a fault. The NHL should be proud of to have players like these who bring skill and great sportsmanship to a game that’s fast becoming one where the best team is the one who can hit or hurt the most.
    I don’t mean to generalise here, but the Boston fans sicken me. A classless bunch who showed their true colours when Raymond was injured.
    Win or lose, this has been a fantastic year in the Canucks history. I hope we give them a parade regardless of the outcome. We need just one period of the razzle dazzle that Kessler and the Sedin’s have shown us all year. Regardless, I am certain that we WILL bring the cup back to Canada and the long suffering fans in B.C will finally have their day.

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  169. murph
    June 14, 2011

    I clicked the link to the article about Savard biting Darcy Tucker…seems Savard got a one-game suspension? But Burrows got off scot-free, and won Game 2 for the Canucks.

    The Sedins dont play tough. Nobody thinks they do. You might not like the “sexist” implcations of the comments, but comparing it to racism or anti-semitism is beyond stupid. And implying that it applies only to Canucks players or non-Canadians is nonsense and you dont back it up in any way.

    I cant imagine anybody thinks the Luongo coverage is “biased”. I’ve never seen a goalie get pulled twice in a 7-game series while taunting his opposing number about the saves he didnt make. Stunning he’d do so, bizarre that you would refer to the criticism he receives as “bias”.

    And anyone who thinks the Chara hit is similar to Rome’s has no business complaining about bias. My God, are you serious? Chara successfully checked Pacioretty, then finished the check late, into the boards; had it not been in that particular spot along the Canadiens bench, it wouldn’t have even been called, maybe a 2-minute minor. Rome’s was a textbook hit to the head of a defenseless skater without the puck.

    Complaining about bias…wait, is this ironic? Am I like one of those people who thinks Onion articles are real?

    Ahhh…you got me…

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  170. Joe
    June 14, 2011

    Serious question; Is the media to blame for Luongo being pulled three times in the Stanley Cup Finals? Discuss amongst yourselves… hahahahahahahahahaha.

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  171. Chris
    June 14, 2011

    The reason that people root against the ‘Nucks is simple: they are the most talented team on the ice yet constantly do and say things to appear to be dirty, whiney, and wilting under adversity. The biggest example to me was one you didn’t cite: it wasn’t the biting incident from Burrows that defines him as a player; it was him intentionally putting his skate over Lucic’s stick at the face off circle and then pretending he was tripped, looking up incredulously when he got a penalty for it. It was childish, unnecessary, and pointless – like so many of the acting theatrics put on by multiple Nucks players during the series.

    Have Boston players done similar things? Sure, look at Marchand – but it’s seen differently; Marchand gives Sedin 5 or 6 shots trying to goad him into fighting – a physical act – versus embellishing a non-injury. Thomas slashes Burrows then gets into a scrap with him – but didn’t pretend that Burrows had broken his arm just before that when he was slapping at Thomas’ stick. So, deserved or not, the undertalented “gritty” Bruins are better liked than the ubertalented “nancy boy” Nucks. Is that so hard to understand?

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  172. Hank
    June 14, 2011

    Jonathan Toews’ impact goes way beyond the stat sheet. His leadership, grit, and determination are unmatched by either of the Sedins or anyone on the Canucks. Take him off the Hawks and there’s no way they win the Cup. That’s why he won the Conn Smythe and that’s why he’s one of the most respected players in the league.

    The fact that the Vancouver journalists still bring up the Chicago Blackhawks is proof of their inability to move past the last two years. The Hawks organization as a whole has more class than the entire city of Vancouver. I would hardly call shoving a cab driver “beating him up.” And if you actually wanna talk about actions on the ice, then consider Raffi Torres trying to send Brent Seabrook’s head through the glass. Or Burrows pulling Bolland’s hair during their fight. Or any number of Canucks’ players taking a run at Bolland’s head after he just came back from a concussion. I guess these instances just didn’t fit in well with your article.

    You don’t want fans and the media to root against you? Then stop repeating the same slime ball moves year after year. Stop crying when criticism is thrown your way. Stop whining when things don’t go your way (Mike Gillis).

    I’m from Chicago, too. So there’s my bias.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 14, 2011

      You’re right, Hank. It’s probably also our inability to move past the Chicago/Vancouver series that led you to make this comment.

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      • Hank
        June 14, 2011

        I guess I’ve put up with the Canucks pathetic whining for the past two years, to add my comment now just seemed natural.

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        • Steve
          June 14, 2011

          Great retort Hank. You sure showed him.

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          • Hank
            June 15, 2011

            Thank you, Steven.

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  173. DALE
    June 14, 2011

    Hey, I like this article a lot and while I agree that it raises a bunch of valid points, I think you’re still trying a bit too hard to show the extent of the anti-Canucks media bias. Some of the general arguments seem to generalized as nothing more than “hey, there are just as classless as we are,” which isn’t that compelling even if it’s true. The comparison of the Chara hit on the Montreal guy with the Rome hit doesn’t hold up; one was an on-time hit into any unlucky fixture, the other was a late hit that probably could have been avoided. And Lapierre’s dive was awful and deserved to be called out.

    Even more than bias the article points up how simply stupid so much of the media commentary is–I heard someone on the radio talking the other day how “soft” Europeans are, comparing the Lakers’ Pau Gausol as an example. All Euro’s are weak? And talking about the Sedins being shut down without mentioning the calibre of defenders is just as moronic. Yet we hear it all the time.

    I’m not a Canucks fan, and I’m rooting against them in the series. but if they do win, they’ve earned it after a compelling 7 game , and no idiotic commentator can change that.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 14, 2011

      While you make some valid points, Chara’s hit on Pacioretty wasn’t “on-time” as he was assessed an interference penalty. Like the Rome hit, it was late.

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      • DALE
        June 15, 2011

        You’re right, I had forgotten that Chara was penalized for that hit. When you watch both hits though it seems plain to me that Chara was simply trying to finish a check into the boards, not trying to hurt the guy, while Rome seems to be taking a “free” shot. While both are open to interpretation as to how late they were, I think people are 100% wrong to suggest Chara was trying to put his guy into the stanchion.

        Anyway I don’t see either team being much dirtier than the other in this series. Although why the Canucks have guys ‘diving’ is beyond me…isn’t that why we hate soccer;-)?

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  174. Adam G
    June 14, 2011

    This article is bang on. I love it! The part about the Sedins is great. The part about Luongo is great. The part about Chicago’s dirty play last year is great. It’s all great!

    My theory about why so many reporters in Canada are against the Canucks is simple. They’d prefer it if their hometown team was the one who ended this long Stanley Cup drought for Canadian NHL teams. I remember when Calgary, Edmonton, and even Ottawa made their runs to the finals a few years back. I was pretty indifferent about the whole thing because I wished it was the Canucks in that scenario with the entire country cheering for them to end the drought.

    So that the drought has dragged on even longer, the anticipation of an NHL team from Canada “bringing the Cup home” has grown to an enormous level. The fans of all the various Canadian NHL teams want it to be them who ends the drought and is the envy of everyone else in Canada.

    But wait? It’s Vancouver? The same city who got to host the biggest party in the countries history just last year? A city with a team led offensively by two Swedes and an American? Outrageous! Let’s cheer against them and write biased articles to try and get the rest of the country to do the same. Then it will somehow delegitimize their success.

    They forget that their team has plenty of non-Canadians on the roster as well and that not everyone on their team is a squeaky clean player either.

    P.S. – I love the unoriginal negative terms that some of those haters are using for the Sedins. ‘Hansel and Gretel’ and ‘The Sisters’. Gee, I’ve never heard that one before. Is it 2002?

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  175. Tim
    June 14, 2011

    That is honestly the best piece of writing I have seen regarding the Canucks in quite literally decades.

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    • Joe
      June 15, 2011

      Then you’re an idiot.

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  176. cat
    June 15, 2011

    Well written, so true! You wrote eloquently of the matter and as a Canucks fan I have felt a bias. Let the naysayers and the bias be negative. at the end of the day we know our team and any objective person can see what is truly going on. Thanks for brining the objectivity back!

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  177. BigCountry
    June 15, 2011

    First of all great article and I am a habs fan, the cbc is biased to any team in canada that isn’t the maple leafs which is sad, here we have teams who make the playoffs but in their minds toronto is the only team that matters. Great fact finding and relevant arguments also maple leafer you don’t know me or any of my friends so how dare you speak for me and the rest of canada go crawl back into your hole with your 67 stanley cup blanket and suck your thumb

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  178. Matty in Seattle
    June 15, 2011

    I watched the Gillis presser yesterday. I watched it several times and something really began to bother me. Gillis was asked if there was fear that Raymond couldn’t walk again. Gillis responded by saying that initially there was fear of that being the case but he then began moving his legs as he lay prone. The natural follow up question was asked-why was he taken from the ice the way he was instead of on a stretcher. Gillis responded by saying he wasn’t part of the medical staff and couldn’t answer.

    Any team that has even the slightest thought that a player has received an injury that wouldn’t allow him to walk again (ie. a spinal cord injury) would NEVER allow him to leave the ice the way he did.

    I honestly felt Gillis was insulting the intelligence of anyone listening to that pile of poo. He lied, plain and simple. In my opinion he lied to try to gain and advantage in the final game through sympathy for Raymond. In my opinion it was one of the most dispicable displays in some time and it came right from the top of the Vancouver organization. Gillis’ mischaracterization of the play in general was troubling but the “walk again” thing was sickening.

    I have been rooting for Vancouver this entire SCF but yesterdays display has really set me off. It’s bad enough that the team is full of low character players that have brought diving to a new low in the series. To have the GM essentially take a dive in a presser while his player lies in the hospital is deplorable. I can no longer support nor stomach this team.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 15, 2011

      Don’t be silly, Matty. Raymond walked off the ice because he told the trainers he could. When they got to the back room, they realized what the injury actually was. By then, it was too late.

      As a First Aider, I can tell you that, if the victim can speak, you trust him or her to give you enough information to begin care. In this case, no one realized what the problem was until afterwards.

      Nobody lied. Get serious.

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      • Matty in Seattle
        June 15, 2011

        If the victim can speak you trust him/her to get information about beginning treatment? Earlier in the series a Bruin went down and once he regained his senses and began to speak he also tried to get up. The medical staff held him down and then insisted he be strapped to a backboard and stretchered off. I guess they do things differently in Massachusetts.
        good grief

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    • Willie and Ladysmith
      June 15, 2011

      Matty, you are convincing absolutely nobody but yourself. Given the nature of the injury, it’s quite possible that Gillis (and others) were thinking initially about the possibility of a spinal injury. And with ANY spinal injury, there’s always the chance of permanent loss of mobility. And who are you to tell us what Gillis was REALLY thinking? The worst part of all your B.S. is that it doesn’t even matter. Was Gillis concerned about Raymond? Of course. Was he exaggerating the level of his concern for effect? Maybe. And if he was, was he doing something that just about 95% of all hockey management would be doing (including the Bruins), i.e., trying to rally the troops and gain an advantage?. Of course. But the guy was injured — badly. Nobody was faking anything. What Gillis said was “deplorable” or “dispicable” only in your fevered brain. Also, please learn how to spell despicable.

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  179. Matty in Seattle
    June 15, 2011

    Sorry Harrison.
    He lied, plain and simple. He said they initially felt he might not be able to walk again then as he lay prone he bagan to move. If that were the truth the trainers would have brought out the stretcher post haste. A blatant dispicable lie. Nobody initially felt he might never walk again-NOBODY.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 15, 2011

      Newsflash: moving someone with a back injury can make the injury worse. While he was able to move his legs after the initial injury, moving him could have worsened the injury to where he would be at risk. According to Gillis, they heard from the hospital that there was a fear over walking. I sincerely doubt Gillis lied about that. If you want to use that as an excuse to cheer for another team, that’s your choice, but it’s a particularly lame reason.

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  180. Matty in Seattle
    June 15, 2011

    No Dan, Gillis said they INITIALLY feared he couldn’t walk again THEN he bagan to move his legs.
    I guess in Gillis’ mind the injury went from a) posible paralysis to b) his legs are moving so get him up to c) I guess it is serious after all. An absurd contention.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 15, 2011

      I don’t find that absurd at all. They moved him. Once they got him off the ice the actual paramedics took over and were evidently shocked that they had moved him. Hence, new fears. I’m really not sure how this is a hard concept to grasp.

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  181. Matty in Seattle
    June 15, 2011

    It’s hard to grasp because it’s not what Gillis said-not even close. He said, again, that they initially feared he wouldn’t be able to walk again then he moved his legs on the ice. He never said he feared paralysis because paramedics took over or a hospital said anything.
    He was asked if they feared he wouldn’t walk again and he lied, when the absurdity of his statement was exposed with the follow up question he threw the trainers under the bus.
    Good grief

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    • Daniel Wagner
      June 15, 2011

      It’s entirely possible that my memory is playing tricks on me, but I listened to the statement on the radio and that’s what I recall. Whatever. It’s such a ridiculous non-issue that I’m not even entirely sure why I’ve spent so much time replying…

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 15, 2011

      Considering the enormous amount of people that get paid to mince Mike Gillis’s words and the fact that you’re the ONLY one arguing this, I’m gonna wager that you’re misinterpreting him.

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      • Matty in Seattle
        June 15, 2011

        Sure Harrison, That’s why the reporter asked the follow up about why he was moved the way he was.
        Laughs

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        • Daniel Wagner
          June 15, 2011

          Everyone was wondering why he was moved. That question was going to be asked no matter what.

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          • Matty in Seattle
            June 15, 2011

            Sure Dan, That’s why it was a follow-up question to Gillis response and started with the phrase “Then why”?

            Face it, Gillis was trying to use the opportunity to gain sympathy. I have little doubt he was genuinely concerned about his players walfare but the way he did it was deplorable.

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  182. Josh
    June 15, 2011

    TSN just gave another reminder of why the coverage of Boston is definitely lopsided. If Boston is considered classy, does that mean everyone forgot about round one and the gesture given after a goal. I believe they had to blur the player’s hand. I don’t think they have had to do that for any Vancouver players in the playoffs. TSN didn’t say anything about it, but it was in a series of clips recapping the round one performances of each team.

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  183. Boston fan
    June 15, 2011

    Josh,
    Shouldn’t you be out burning down your own city?
    Keep it classy Vancouver {:o)

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  184. Slim Pickens
    June 16, 2011

    Boston fan here. I wasn’t happy with much of the coverage of the series. The Luongo quotes were blown out of proportion. The Sedin Brothers are very classy, they did not deserve all that crap heaped on. I would’ve liked a little more coverage of the positive. I especially liked the way your fans and team saluted each other at the end of the series after a bitter loss.

    That said, I have a few problems with this blog article. Let’s start with Maxim. He didn’t get any more or any less heat for his little stunt than Lucic got for his. The difference I see is that Lapierre started it, he did it at a point when the Canucks looked like they were going to roll to an easy series win. If he doesn’t start it Lucic doesn’t respond. But again, Lapierre was hardly raked across the coals, it was just more noise in a cacaphony of it.

    Next, the blog author has the Chara hit in Montreal correct. It was an unintentional, unfortunate hit. That stanchion not there it’s another uneventful hit. I invite anyone who thinks otherwise to take a closer look on youtube. The hit on your guy, hardly vicious. Awkward more like it. Reminded me of the Celtics losing their star guard when he fell awkwardly during a take down by the Heat PF. Tough break, move on.

    The Rome hit, he had that suspension coming. That is EXACTLY the type of hit they’re trying to crack down on. How does your HC say otherwise, ludicrous. 4 games has been the standard this season for that type of hit. Rome didn’t slow down, he had time, he didn’t lower his arms, he had time. If he let up even a little he would’ve been on the ice.

    Didn’t care for some of the antics on either side, but the Canucks were especially weaselly. Just last night, that clown running into the end of Thomas’s goalie stick was a pathetic attempt to draw a penalty. And I can’t believe that uber-weasel Burroughs continued to try the same stunts, even though the refs made it clear early on that they weren’t buying anything from that fraud. I’m sure Marchand drove you nuts, but he wasn’t hiding his nonsense by doing it off the play when no one was looking. That’s a weak defense, but I don’t condone alot of what he did either.

    That’s enough. I assume most of your core is coming back and you’ll be back in the thick of it again next year. Alot had to break right for the Bruins, so they’ll have a harder time making a return trip to the Finals.

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  185. Tata
    June 16, 2011

    After reading this blog, it doesn’t surprise me to see the rioting last night. So much paranoia and insecurity. Nothing good can come from the “the world is out to get us” attitude that the blogger puts forward. And clearly the people of Vancouver bought into it. Such a shame, pretty city, sad population.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      June 16, 2011

      Ha, am I to infer I’m partially to blame? Hilarious.

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      • Boston fan
        June 16, 2011

        I doubt enough people care about your opinion Harrison.

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        • Harrison Mooney
          June 16, 2011

          Exactly!

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          • Joe
            June 17, 2011

            If you don’t see the part that insecurity and paranoia played in the riot, you’re blind. You appear to have been the voice of insecurity and paranoia at the Sun. Obviously I’m not blaming you, but it’s a pretty sad message you put forward in this blog.

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  186. Tom
    June 16, 2011

    How can you expect non-baised reporting when the Canucks employed a goddamn diving squad? Hard to defend such behaviour.

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  187. TheTellerofTruths
    June 17, 2011

    Wow, did you actually listen to Jim Hugshson call the games? You could hear his voice drop an octive with every Bruins goal. TSN had a “Canucks Quest for the Cup” banner on their screen. On Sports Centre after game 4, Dutch consoled Canucks fans telling them not worry, reminding fans that the Canucks are a different team at home. Fans, like you expect the media to share their sentiments about their favourite team, and when that doesn’t happen there are cries of media bias where it doesn’t really exist.

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  188. James
    June 17, 2011

    This is quite simply the finest piece of writing to come out of the entire Stanley Cup playoffs. It couldn’t be more accurate or well-written. Fantastic work.

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