Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Good Media Guys

Recently the Oilogosphere has been putting the boots to the work of a lot of journalists, and rightly so, there has been some very lazy reporting out there.

Anyhow, just for the hell of it, I thought I'd throw up a couple of comments on some of the good stuff I've seen lately, and a quick stab at the guys i can't stand.

* Kevin Karius had a terrific little piece on Brian Ross, the Oilers video coach. About 2 or 3 minutes on Global news last night. MacTavish talks about breaking the game down to it's 20 basic elements (yikes!) , Smith chats for a bit about using video to prepare himself for playing against Ovechkin, Brian Ross indicated that the guys who were really into going to the video room to look at "chances" were Roloson and Sykora, and Smyth liked to go over all of his own. I was always pretty much indifferent to Karius when he had that "Sports Night" show, but this was very good and his work on the PPVs is much better than I would have expected.

* Drew Remenda is a breath of fresh air on the stale HNIC broadcasts. The guy adds value I think, pretty easy to listen to as well.

* Jason Gregor, I listened to him a tonne in the playoffs, especially after home games, and he was excellent. Respectful to the callers, but slaps numbers at people when an opinion is out of hand as well. The guys on The Team radio drive time show, Stauffer and usually Spector, are good too.

* Dan Barnes. I think he does a good job, mostly I'm remembering his work in the playoffs. Sees things for what they are for the most part, and says it.

* Brownlee. A reasonable guy and a good read. If a story is going to break out of the Oilers he just always seems to be the first print guy in the loop as well.

* Duhatschek. Just a terrific hockey writer. Personally I'm mostly just into Oilers stuff unless it's the playoffs.

And the guys I can't stand any more:

Strachan, Brooks and Garrioch (I'm actually convinced that they talk crap to each other and then use that as "a source close to the team"). These guys drive me nuts.

Tie Domi. In the little bit I've seen of him, it's surreal how bad this guy is in the broadcasting gig. You could hire DeNiro to play the role of an ex-athlete who is thoroughly incompetent, but he couldn't touch what Domi's doing just naturally.

Bryan Hall.

Terry Jones. I don't think Jones even likes hockey any more.


Feel free to add any I've missed in either category.


Blogger PDO said...

Drew Remenda.



Vic. Vic...

How could you?


11/15/2006 4:54 pm  
Blogger Bretzky81 said...

HATE. HATE HATE Pierre McGuire. needs a MONSTER boot to the head.

11/15/2006 5:11 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

To this point, I'm not a fan of Remenda either. Maybe I'll come around to him but he just doesn't do a lot for me.

11/15/2006 5:24 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

I guess I'm alone, but I'm always glad to see that Remenda is doing colour for a game. I think he knows what he is talking about and is pretty entertaining. Doesn't talk too much either.

Along the HNIC line, I really like the way that Hughson calls a game too, but I can't get past his Canuck homerism.

pdo: I think his call on the Michalek hit was a fair one. It was a dirty hit. He didn't complain that there should have been a penalty called, or maybe he did after that clip ended, I dunno.

Really similar to the Nash hit on Peca last fall in a lot of ways. The only issue penalty-wise was if the hit was late, and it was touch and go in both cases. But neither were illegal hits beyond that, and there was an element of 'intent to injure' with both. Not that you can prove it, sort of like you can never prove that a pitcher is trying to bean a batter, but sometimes it seems kind of obvious.

11/15/2006 5:41 pm  
Blogger PDO said...

Vic: I thought it was way over the top and was waiting for him to start crying.

To each their own though.

I'm one of the few who really likes Maguire. He beats a few too many dead horses, but he makes me laugh.

Anyone else watching the Sens/Sabres game? They just flashed the scoring chances at the top of the screen, they were listed as 11-10 for Ottawa and then Buffalo went down and scored.


11/15/2006 6:16 pm  
Blogger Slipper said...

Pierre McGuire really grinds my gears, ecspecially when he's expressing his disdain for something throught the entire game. He becomes dull and mono-tone, and it's hard to distinguish what the heck he's saying. It's come to the point that I actually root for sticks to break wjile he's broadcasting because I know it gets under his skin. He' either LOVES something too much or is bothered by it too much.

Domi just comes across as a buffoon. He makes me think of the Fonz, cued up to say "eeeeeeeeeeeehhhhhhhhhh!" once in awhile, wheever the stupidity quotient on one of TSN's broadcasts hasn't been met.

Darren Dreghr kind of surprised me this year. Only because I never heard the guy talk so much until he came over to TSN. It's sort of telling that SPortsnet would give guys like Brophy, Kypreos and Watters all that air when they had a decent guy available, yet delegated him to the role of relay man. I'm sure he was pleased as punch to free himself of that lunatic panel until he found out who would be joining him at TSN.

11/15/2006 7:01 pm  
Blogger PDO said...

I was the first to say it..

Kelly Hrudey is the best in the business, and the poor Ottawa Senators can't buy a break and should be the poster-boys for Karma being non-existent, because they've never done anything to warrant they luck they've had over the past few years.


11/15/2006 7:06 pm  
Blogger Scarlett said...

I hate McGuire. I wish for his death daily. Also, Glenn Healy has become a total ass. I don't remember him being so bloody irritating as he has become lately.

Remenda? Don't hate him but don't like him either. I find him blah.

Kelly Hrudey rocks.

11/15/2006 8:22 pm  
Blogger misfit said...

Steve Ludzig is my personal favorite analyst.

I've got to agree with vic on Duhatschek and Brownlee.

I can feel my blood preassure rising with every word I read/hear from Strachan, Brooks, and Garrioch.

The rest I either don't really care about, or don't really notice in the first place.

...oh, and LeBrun isn't bad either. He seems be pretty in tune to what's going on around the league.

11/15/2006 8:30 pm  
Blogger RiversQ said...

Hey Vic, have you read what Stauffer has had to say recently regarding his man-crush, Lupul? Of course, I guess we all have our own sacred cows and whipping boys.

11/15/2006 8:39 pm  
Blogger Bank Shot said...

Pierre McGuire is the outright worst there is. Bryan "I'd sell my sould for Tony Romas" Hall doesn't even count as a serious media guy does he?

The Hat is the best.

11/15/2006 9:53 pm  
Blogger Dennis-IOF said...

Remenda is really making me look bad because I swear he was a total idiot when he did colour for the Sharks and now he's just a little bit annoying that he's gone national. He still says some stuff that makes me laugh, case in point the first HNIC cast of the year for the Oil when old Drew said the Oilers had some guys back on the point that could just fire it!! I know that's a lazy cliche but it still kills me. He's not the dummy that he was in SJ though. Given the teams and games I've been watching I'd say both Ana guys need to be kicked in the nuts and that the SJ PBP guy is pretty hateful too. I'm on the record with my hatred for Chico Resch, ie NJ colour guy and Craig Laughlin's voice in the Caps games, another colour guy, could make the devil itch. In fact just the other night my GF says "who's that guy talking right now.!!" It was even driving her nuts. He is a guy that I think will become unbearable if the Caps ever come close to taking the leap. I know all these guys work local and Joe Local wants to hear all the good stuff about his team but c'mon...with the advent of the CI Package lots of other guys are hearing your work too now and maybe you'd like to work nationally someday. Of course Remenda used to get on with shit all the time in SJ and he still got a job. Then again the CBC still employ Wittman and Cole too;)

I could write a book on how much I hate Bob Cole. Everyone's "skating hard and skating well" and lots of people are "looking sharp" but this bag of crap isn't. He doesn't even know the fucking names anymore and it's embarrassing.

Jim Hughson is a guy I could really like if A: I didn't listen to him locally with the Dys and B: he only called CBC games that DIDN'T involve Van. When it came to bringing stats to the forefront baseball had Bill James and eventually Baseball Prospectus and Rob Neyer but no one's come out like that for hockey. At least Hughson does an excellent job calling out line matchups, or at least he did last year in the Edm/SJ series when he did a magnificent job, and that's better than nothing. I mean I long for the day when intermissions will feature stats like "which of the opposing players spent the most time on the ice vs Crosby" but that seems a long way off right now. But one of these days some kid's gonna collect all the data that guys like VF, RQ and MC trot out and he's gonna have a silken voice and he's gonna bring it to the unwashed masses. He'll have to trot out a bit of a key right off the bat to get people familair with these terms but it was just a few years ago that I saw colour guys in basball explaining OPS. I'd wager this guy will start out in a non-traditional market where fans are open to new stats and then his niche will find a voice and eventually he'll go national. I don't know who this kid's gonna be but I can't wait until he shows up and until everyone else starts to emulate him. But until he does the best the numbers guys have is Hughson with his matchups.

Before I forget..Tripp Tracy does colour for the Canes and is another dingbat. Denis Potvin is a wingnut on the Cats telecasts as well. And for the record the worst bcasting team I ever heard was in the last days of Irvin when he was joined by Steve Schutt. If you can remember that then I feel sorry for you. BTW...I do like Duhatchek but every time he's on the HStove and someone brings up the Flames well let's just say his eyes open and his pants flood. He can't hide the local love. On another note...I hated John Davidson's guts. You'd be watching the hot stove about something else and JD would pipe in, "Hey guys...Glen Sather's bowel movements have been less liquid lately. He attributes it to more oatmeal in his diet." And once Gretz landed there it was game over.

When it comes to print guys...there's no one I read regularily...well outside of Dave Molanari, sp?, of the Pit Post Gazette who does a mailbag every now and then and speaks in sensible and intelligent terms. I've been reading some of the Chi dailies lately looking for hints on if Keith or Seabrook is coming our way and I've seen some good stuff there too.

Sorry I couldn't shorten that up but this topic boils my blood.

11/15/2006 11:07 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

I forgot about Ludzik, one of the best I think. It's easy in hockey to dig up video clips to support and opinion. It's tougher to try and represent the important aspects of the games in a few minutes, and I think that Ludzik does that really well. He's way off the mark on goalies though, or so it seems to me, I think Hrudey does that well.

Dennis: I should have guessed that you'd have a long list :) the local broadcaster bias always drives you nuts. Personally it doesn't bother me too much unless it's the Flames or Nucks, because I hate those teams. Though Principe on the PPVs really is an over-the-top cheerleader.

On Hughson, I agree with you that he comments on the D matchups, which is cool because I tend not to notice those so much, he brings it into play for me. But he is completely oblivious to forward matchups. During the broadcast of the Oilers-Caps games he started going on and on about how well the Nucks had shut down Ovechkin "he barely had the puck all night!", exclaimed Jim. Remenda asked if they had the Sedins out against him, the was a pause and then a slow and quiet "yaaa". The guy didn't have a clue.

I would have guessed the Sedins for that gig too. But looking at the shift chart Vigneault ran Kesler at him whenever he could. 7 of Kesler's 9.5 5on5 minutes came against O.V. A bit unexpected.

On the head-to-head icetime thing ... I got a bit of space on a server that let's me use PHP and MySQL. So I was thinking of throwing something on there that would let a guy check all that sort of thing, even while the game was in progress. I took a run at it in the preseason, seems simple enough. Once hockey season started I left it on the back burner though. Probably the same sort of format as the sidebar thing here, maybe allowing for more than one player, and allowing to check guys even if they're on the same team, etc. I'm really not sure on the format, any suggestions will be considered. Probably won't get around to it again until Christmas though.

11/16/2006 12:42 am  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...


I haven't caught too much of Stauffer's show lately, though what I have heard has been pretty reasonable on the Lupul front.

Bear in mind that Lupul's agent is one of his show's main sponsors, and Stauffer is also buddies with Lupul. If the callers start turning on Joffrey (and they haven't yet as far as I know, but it's always just a matter of "when" here in Oilerville, with any player ;) ) then I'm sure he'll be defending the guy like a bear with it's cub.

11/16/2006 12:46 am  
Blogger Dennis-IOF said...

Stauffer never really did "have" me per se but he totally lose me this time that he said Ty Conklin projected to be a better goalie option than did Biron.

11/16/2006 8:19 am  
Blogger realfakemeat said...

Perhaps the most annoying of Cole's traits is not using players' names, instead it's always "Toronto shoots the puck in, Ottawa picks it up and skates out ..." I don't think he even bothers paying attention any more.

Strachan is just awful, awful, awful and especially bad when he's on Prime Time Sports on tv ... what a maroon.

Fat Scotty Taylor, who used to write for the Winnipeg Free Press and do the occasional spot on CBC before he got fired for plagerizing (he copied from an obscure little paper called USA today and didn't think anyone would notice), was always particularly noxious. Even though I haven't seen him in a while he still makes me gag.

Hughson has the best play-by-play delivery, imo.

Another name that hasn't been mentioned yet is Brunt, although he does not write often about hockey, he may be the best sportswriter in the country. And the Hat is great, too, I always watch for when the globe gives him that daily q&a slot online (usually during playoffs, and last year during the olympics).

To add another category: hockey personality I most WISH would do commentary. For me it's gotta be Mike Smith, late of the Jets and Hawks. There really is no one like him around the NHL -- the guy has a PhD in Russian Studies(?), always looks and sounds like he's coming off a three-day bender, and has a delivery like a late-80s Walter Matthau.

11/16/2006 3:33 pm  
Blogger Dennis-IOF said...

Ahhh...I had forgotten about Scott Taylor!!! He was a gassbag though.

11/16/2006 4:38 pm  
Blogger Shane said...

drew remenda spent his early career broadcasting, he's biased towards all western teams, including the flames and 'nucks. he is a biased bitch

4/07/2007 2:20 pm  

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