Far from being over, goaltending saga continues with healthy injection of unsubstantiated gossip

I’ve been wrong a lot lately regarding the goaltending situation in Vancouver. When rumours began to swirl that Cory Schneider was on the block, I scoffed, telling a number of different outlets that it seemed like the Canucks were bluffing in order to create some leverage for a Roberto Luongo trade.

Nope.

The day after the Schneider trade, I gathered my bearings and weighed in a second time. I closed the piece by saying this: “The best I can say about the way this entire mess finally ended is that, at least, in a sense, it finally ended.”

Nope. You fool.

As it turns out, the Cory Schneider trade didn’t end the drama. Not even close. It just took it in a weird, slightly more personal, far less professional direction, like when Kara Thrace returns from the dead in Battlestar Galactica and she’s all emotional and weird and then she disappears into the sky or whatever.

In the days since, not only has the move led to Luongo watch — as reports continue trickling out that the Canucks are sending pretty much everybody in the organization short of Fin and Nicole van Zanten down to Florida to speak to him — but now we even have this unsourced, vague rumour from Bill Watters:

 

In an interview with Dave Pratt on CKNW, Watters dropped this little nugget, in addition to telling those listening that Schneider had requested a trade from Vancouver.

This all sounds pretty sketchy to me. As Greg Wyshynski pointed out, when Watters speaks of off-ice issues, let us hope and pray he isn’t giving credence to this ridiculous rumour from an Edmonton radio listener:

 

Pro-tip to people spreading completely unfounded infidelity rumours: think of Poonerman.

Furthermore, if you’re going to concoct and spread this garbage, maybe do a little research on your relationship statuses. Cory Schneider doesn’t have a girlfriend. He has a fiancé. And later this summer, he will have a wife.

Again, I want to believe Watters isn’t legitimizing this. I hate to even link him to it, but for what it’s worth, if you’re going to drop the “off-ice issues” bomb without clarifying, you leave yourself open to being connected to lowest-common denominator trash like this. Either tell us what you think you actually know, or run the risk of being hockey’s National Enquirer. Join us next week when Watters lets us know which Canucks have the worst bikini bodies.

But as to the idea that Schneider wanted out, while I’m more than willing to believe he made like Luongo and told the Canucks he didn’t want to be back if the goaltending situation wasn’t sorted out, I don’t buy a full-on request. If he did want out, then the smart thing for the Canucks to do would be to say so, no? It might make them look little better.

Instead, everybody is denying that this is the case.

 

It’s possible that, maybe, the Canucks think they’d look even sillier if they admitted their handling of this fiasco led to trade requests from both goalies. But it doesn’t explain why Liut would go along with keeping that under wraps.

More than likely, when a seemingly shell-shocked Schneider told Ben Kuzma after the trade, “I always thought I was going to spend the rest of my career there when I signed my extension,” he was being genuine. And today’s injection of unsubstantiated gossip is an unwelcome and unnecessary crock of crap.

In the end, I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I almost envy the Philadelphia Flyers, who have been playing with no goalie at all for years. All of a sudden, it sounds nice.

24 comments

  1. stevcB
    July 3, 2013

    Help me Obi-Bulis. You’re my only hope.
    please help me wake up from this Canucks Bizzaro World nightmare! :-(

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  2. Nee
    July 3, 2013

    And interestingly, when Wyshynski tweeted Bill Watters about his allegations, he doubled down but said “it’s not booze or drugs”. There are some absurd rumours flying around.

    GREAT. : ( What a gong show. Helloooooooooooooooooo off-season.

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  3. Aaron
    July 3, 2013

    Good article, but why oh why do we even care about rumors. I care that Schnider is gone. I think it was the right move given the situation. I hope Lou will get a fair shake from the fan. I doubt it but hope he does. I don’t care if Schnider, Hodgson, or any other Canucks wanted to leave. It doesn’t really matter! does it? If they are gone thiey are gone, kill the drama and play some hockey!

    Also I love reading PITB do you guys have an app yet? you should!!!!

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  4. akidd
    July 3, 2013

    well, this certainly isn’t a feel-good bit of gossip. it’s some pretty private stuff and no fun for anyone involved. if it’s true it’s really shitty and if it’s not, it’s still a shitty bit of gossip.

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    • PB
      July 3, 2013

      Well said. Watters is trash

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  5. Sarah
    July 3, 2013

    This is such a mess. I really hope that this watters character is just blowing his mouth…don’t need garbage like this surrounding the team.

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  6. Travis
    July 3, 2013

    Ya semantics of girlfriend vs fiance really disprove the rumour. Why even bring up that? Good work on addressing the real issue.

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  7. Kenji
    July 3, 2013

    But are you really going to put out a “worst bikini bodies of the Canucks” article? I remember Bieksa chirping Hordichuk regarding the latter’s baby-holding photo with torso shot.

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  8. Abby
    July 3, 2013

    Oh gosh.

    Nothing is ever simple here in Vancouver, is it?

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  9. Kenji
    July 3, 2013

    I can’t wait for Roberto’s press conference tomorrow when he reveals:

    - sketches of the Canucks’ next jersey design, featuring a superfluous third nipple!
    - which Canuck that really likes to “shoot” his “gun” at “bears”!
    - why Bieksa is called Juice!
    - what REALLY went on in the bathroom during the 2007 playoffs and if it had anything to do with Kim Kardashian’s chihuahua’s palimony suit!

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  10. ACMESalesRep
    July 3, 2013

    Well, technically, Luongo’s contract could be considered an “off-ice issue”. So could Gillis’ incompetence in handling this whole thing, for that matter…

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  11. T
    July 3, 2013

    Harry. You’re above this.

    You’re above the “he banged the players’ gf.”

    You have something. It’s not that you could have been somebody. You are somebody. Your brother never let you down. You’re a shining light in the fading Van hockey media. You give me hope.

    You’re above all of this. You’re gold. I still love you.

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    • Harrison Mooney
      July 3, 2013

      Haha this might be a little over the top but thank you.

      I’d liked to have written nothing — absolutely nothing — on this. Someone passed this rumour onto me on Draft day. I ignored it, as I ignore all rumours of this ilk. I hate them. I find them completely unconstructive and childish.

      But when a mainstream personality goes on a mainstream radio program and gives a breath of life to this garbage, and it becomes enough of a talking point, part of my job is to have something to say about it. You’ve seen us do the “This is not a story” feature in the past. That’s us reluctantly joining the conversation on something we don’t feel even merits one. In this case, I didn’t really want to do that, but I sort of felt like if everyone ignored this once it had been bumped up to Level 2, it would continue to be a thing, like past Canuck infidelity rumours that have somehow seeped into mainstream lore (you know the ones). So I wrote something dismissing it.

      What sucks is we’ll get traffic from this and it’ll do well because people like salacious nonsense. That was not my motivation. I just wanted to say no, this isn’t a thing. I don’t want this to be a thing, and this already absurd story shouldn’t take this turn.

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      • Nee
        July 3, 2013

        Well said Harrison.

        One thing though: since when is your name Harry? WTF?!

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        • Harrison Mooney
          July 3, 2013

          It’s not. Hasn’t been since high school. This guy and his buddy on Twitter call me Harry because they’re dorks.

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      • Mel
        July 3, 2013

        I’m glad to hear that you thought about this before writing it, but IMHO it would be better not to publicize crap like this at all. How many people listen to David Pratt, and even if they do, he is well-known for trying to stir things up, so his opinion is discounted appropriately. Don’t you have more influence than a washed-up radio host? Or more influence among thoughtful fans who would rather not hear about something like this at all.
        I really wish I could unread this.

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        • Kenji
          July 3, 2013

          I have no doubt at all that wacky stuff goes on in hockey.

          Why would it not? Adult misbehaviour could occur in the hypothetical ‘average business’ office/site/franchise/mom and pop operation’ as well. And given that these subjects are rich, young, glamourous sports stars of privilege, there are not likely to be fewer temptations.

          At the same time, coverage of this sort of thing is new, in the sports context. Normally one would rarely run across unsavouriness. Hockey players have an image of being relatively clean, admirable Canadian alpha males.

          I can see crimes being in the public interest. Sports figures should not be immune to the punishments of the common citizen. But also they are fully human beings and should be able to expect whatever dignity and privacy they would offer to others.

          Whatever it’s worth, I had never heard of this story before reading Harrison’s post.

          Does that make Harrison a blabbermouth? Well, maybe. But he is a journalist, he has an expectation to cover events in the hockey world, and he is following up on the comments that are now part of the public discourse.

          A forward-thinking, diversity respecting, literary and sociological reference-alluding blog is one thing. “Keeping it funny,” as Django says.

          This Schneider business is not funny, it must be personally excoriating for all concerned. It is the price of fame.

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    • Tom 1040
      July 3, 2013

      Ummm, … a little over the top?

      T. does not stand for Tom.

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  12. Dan
    July 3, 2013

    Watters is ridiculous. Two years ago he said Price wanted out of Montreal over a shrug he gave Gorges

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  13. Pavo
    July 4, 2013

    Harrison, I wish you had ignored this gossip. Do you know posters on hfboards (and no doubt other forums) are linking to your article to give this drivel credibility?

    Also, from its unsavoury nature, it doesn’t seem to make much sense. If the Schneider trade had happened out of the blue and in mid-season, yeah – one could believe that maybe off-ice issues were involved.

    But the Canucks’ season ended a while ago and it seems the whole world and its grandma was waiting for Gillis to either move Luongo, or fail to move Luongo and be forced to buyout Luongo or trade Schneider instead. We saw endless articles about how Gillis was between a rock and a hard place, and trading Schneider for assets would be the best hockey decision.

    Interesting that this little piece of muckraking requires Schneider’s trade request to magically coincide with what everyone knew was crunch-time for Gillis to move / buyout one of his goalies.

    Ugh! Some people are real cretins. (Not you, I’m talking about the tweeters / twits!).

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    • Harrison Mooney
      July 4, 2013

      Why would they link to an article that calls the rumour a crock of crap as proof of its credibility? Good Lord, people are stupid.

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      • Pavo
        July 4, 2013

        Harrison,

        Isn’t this how the maelstrom of negative publicity started for the Vancouver Olympics? Some bored golf hack from the UK Guardian wrote a series of virulent, thinly-researched articles absolutely panning Vancouver and Canada. Pretty soon media around the world had picked it up and built on it, citing for credibility – the original Guardian articles!

        And before we knew it, the Canadians were classless, arrogant, incompetent (not to mention criminally negligent) hosts who didn’t care about player safety, couldn’t organise a piss-up in a brewery and had the gall to aspire to winning more medals that any other nations.

        Yes people can be truly stupid. BTW I really enjoyed your ‘what’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander’ articles’ on the London Olympics. It was amusing seeing the Guardian’s comment boards explode in apoplectic indignation.

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  14. BBoone
    July 4, 2013

    Make something up. Spread the rumour. Spin the rumor until it is “news “. Pretend you are a journanilist and now report it as “news” Interview another “reporter” and then report his opinon as “news” Every Canuck “reporter “on the Vancouver Provincial enquirer and the Sun enquirer of Vancouver has deteriorated steadily into spinning fantasy until it sticks then reporting it as news. The real truth here is the Schneiders girlfriend had refused to submit a cake to the cake sale because she is not a very good baker and Schneider reportedly wanted to participate as a skater in the shootouts or else he would not practice his shooting.
    More to come on this …

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  15. mb13
    July 4, 2013

    You guys are all hilarious. Why bother addressing the issue?

    Look up the Streisand Effect.

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