I think most of us cheer for a specific sports team for just a few simple reasons: maybe it’s the town team, or maybe the team caught our imagination a long time ago with their style of play or personality, or maybe we met one of them at Safeway when were were kids, or maybe we played the game a little and adopted a team because one or more players had elements in their game we wished to embody.
Pretty much all of us want our teams to win. I enjoy watching teams being built, procurement over a number of years, clusters of young players arriving together and driving the team up the standings into previously unheard of territory.
I’m not as rabid (honest) an Oiler fan as I once was, as there was a time when I truly hated the Calgary Flames. Now, not so much. I enjoy watching how they go about their business and what they do each summer to improve their team. I can’t follow all 30 NHL teams, but I pay attention to the NW, San Jose, Ottawa, St. Louis, Boston and now Columbus. That’s 10 teams. Why those teams? Specific personal reasons, like the Sharks are the Oakland Seals of my youth with cooler uniforms and better ownership, or Ottawa is the eastern Canadian team I don’t loathe. For people my age Boston will show up on that list until we’re dead because of Orr. That team is as bad as any in the league, but I still pull for them. They got a brand new goalie in the offseason, he’ll go from his impressive SP on a good team to an awful one with the B’s and everyone in the Hub City will blame the goalie.
And so it goes.
Love the town team. Today Kevin Lowe will receive a contract extension. I’m not going to argue with the extension, but the timing really casts a shadow over what the Oilers are trying to do here. Are they really interested in winning? Or is it more important to keep up appearances? I do believe that the EIG would have been better served by waiting out this season to see how things went and then deciding on the future in the spring based on results.
If results aren’t driving this franchise, then what in Holy Hell is? That’s the question, I think. Today’s extension concerns me for lots of reasons, not the least of which is timing. This extension comes when Lowe is under fire from Brian Burke over the Penner offer sheet? Is that why they’re doing it? Lord I hope not.
The best case scenario for this signing is that the EIG told him to go spend money this summer no matter the target and he did so, gathering up Penner and Souray. IF Kevin Lowe was instructed to make some noise in order for the Katz group to be forced to the second page of the newspaper and off the airwaves then this signing makes sense. It’s rewarding your manager for executing the plan.
It does send a weird message, though.