Vish

Some time between 9 and midnight (Edmonton time), Jason Gregor will re-run an interview Bob Stauffer did with Kevin Lowe earlier today.

It is, without over-selling it, a piss cutter.

The Copper and Blue has some hi-lites and the Team’s site is here.

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66 Responses to "Vish"

  1. HBomb says:

    Is it wrong that I was left with a raging erection after listening to the interview this afternoon?

    Yes, it was THAT awesome. Finally….

  2. Bruce says:

    Yeah … that’s wrong.

  3. Vic Ferrari says:

    About freaking time, where did Lowe eventually find his testicles, anyway?

    Burke would never say something like this about Milbury, because Mike is off his head a bit, and Burke is physically afraid of him (seriously, go to youtube and watch any video with them both in it).)

    Jebus, was anyone else thinking that they were going to have to go down to SoCal and club the the everliving shyte out of that weak, fat Mick themselves?

    (aside from Staples, he’d do that. He’s physically small, but he’s a violent little bugger, that one. My advice; watch your step with him, boyos, he’s off the hook).

  4. HBomb says:

    Yeah … that’s wrong.

    Meh, shit happens I guess. But damn, what a cap to an exciting week in Oilerville.

  5. Art Vandelay says:

    Well, Milbury once went to war with only a shoe as a weapon, so you know going in he’s fearless.

  6. Oilman says:

    Awesome…the only thing is I wish he would have went into more detail about how Burke got Neidermeyer. I’m guessing he had some incriminating photos of brother Rob:o)

  7. Mike says:

    Seriously – Lowe must have had himself 4 or 5 doubles before that display. That’s the only answer for such a hilariously uninhibited public raping. As a functional alcoholic, I can recognize my own!

    My only criticism is this. When you say something like “you wanna count rings?” – you simply MUST follow up with “…Bitch?”

  8. spOILer says:

    Bob’s interview is now the lead story on TSN Hockey.

  9. Bruce says:

    “Where do I begin?,” started Lowe. “He’s a moron, first of all.”

    How to win me over in ten words. My preference is usually to take the high road, but goddammit, once in awhile the gloves have to come off, and when they do, you might as well go ahead and win the damn fight. Burke has been pounding away like Randy Holt on Steve Carlson for a full year now, and it’s high time somebody called his considerable bluff.

    Nice shot at Mike Keenan in the process, although Lowe might rue bringing up the name of Corey Perry of all people. Talk about handing your opponent some live ammunition.

    I don’t think he was likely drinking, and I certainly don’t think this outburst was planned; for all his controlled demeanour Lowe has always had a “vicious” temper, which most memorably manifested itself the night he went apeshit on Tony McKegney and earned his nickname. Oilers had to kill off a 12-minute powerplay after that one — still the longest one I’ve ever seen.

    This is the most fun generated by the guys wearing suits since Ron Low went off on Marc Crawford in Game 6 in ’98. :D

  10. PDO says:

    Bruce, I haven’t heard it yet, but, if I’m clear, was it not along the lines of:

    “We’d love to have Perry here if Burkie thinks he is making too much money?”

    I’m not too worried about that being bulletin board material.

  11. Jonathan says:

    I don’t think he was likely drinking, and I certainly don’t think this outburst was planned; for all his controlled demeanour Lowe has always had a “vicious” temper, which most memorably manifested itself the night he went apeshit on Tony McKegney and earned his nickname. Oilers had to kill off a 12-minute powerplay after that one — still the longest one I’ve ever seen.

    What’s the story? It’s a ways before my time.

  12. PDO says:

    Any word on when it’ll hit? I can’t really sit around listening all night….

  13. Oilman says:

    it’s on now

  14. Dennis says:

    Yeah, it’s about time that Lowe went off on Burke. The offersheet’s in the fucking CBA so why continuously bash a guy that used it?

    Lowe took it and took it and now Katz is backing him with the chequebook and the Oilers pipe is full and Lowe feels like he’s got enough backing all around to fire back.

  15. PDO says:

    I so clicked a link, opened a site and instantly heard “Well, first of all, he’s an idiot.”

    This is amazing.

    Stauffer just took it to him..

  16. PDO says:

    Mr. Keith made me word that poorly.

    I randomly clicked on the team’s link to see where the interview was at AND Stauffer just baited Lowe… excellent interview.

  17. Ribs says:

    Wow. Take that, Hamburglar man.

  18. Dennis says:

    I clicked on and the first thing I heard was about paying guys when they’re in their mid 20′s instead of when they reach 31, ie old system.

    As it wound down, Lowe mentioned Pitkanen was an only child and then he said, “not that something like that matters.”

    Lowe’s still a little bit off no matter how you sell it.

  19. mc79hockey says:

    That interview was unreal. I was listening to it live and I actually emailed a friend to say “You have got to start listening to the Team”. I almost wonder if it was planned, just the way that Stauffer got into him so quick. Not that Stauffer was in on it necessarily, I just wonder if Lowe said “This might be a good time to ask me about Brian Burke”.

    As for the content, I have two general comments. First, the six Cups line was weak, although reminiscent of Dr. Dre’s “Now you wanna run around and talk about guns, Like I ain’t got none, What you think I sold ‘em all, Cause I stay well off”. Kevin Lowe’s six Cups have exactly nothing to do with the job that he’s done running the Oilers since 2000. As a sort of a general putdown, absolutely, 6-1 is wicked. It’s 1-0 in their current jobs though.

    I had a bit of trouble with the jab about Burke riding Murray’s coat tails too. Of course, it’s absolutely true. Thing is, as long as Lowe is talking about his six Cups, it’s fair game to point out that that team had six Hall of Famers and he wasn’t one of them.

    The other thing – Lowe is going to get slaughtered if he gets into a pissing match with Burke. Burke is a smoother guy who’s better at turning a phrase. I’d imagine that, in Churchillian fashion, Burke is crafting his off the cuff response right now. This really is MacT’s job.

  20. PDO says:

    MC..

    All the reason more to promote MacT?

    I really hope one day the Oilers play the Ducks (or whatever team Burkie is in charge of) on Halloween.

    THAT could lead to all sorts of fun, and someone, hopefully myself, would be town hero for showing up as the Wizard of Oz.

  21. Pat H says:

    I almost wonder about the jokes alluding to whether Lowe had a few before this interview. Truth?

    I agree that this was a long time coming, but I think it went off into areas that it shouldn’t have gone off into (Burke is an ass, but he never went so far to insult us as a fan base, did he?). The Pitkanen thing was another odd one, as Dennis points out. Where the hell did that come from? The line about Bobby Ryan seemed weird to me as well.

    All in all though, excellent for entertainment value. I’m a bit embarrassed to admit it, but I occasionally turn on a few minutes of WWE’s Smackdown here and there, just to get a fix of ‘over the top’ dialogue. No need to do so tonight. Thanks Lowe.

  22. Bruce says:

    PDO: re: Perry, if K-Lowe would really like for him to be traded here, he wouldn’t have scuttled the perfectly fine Comrie-for-Perry deal that was very nearly consummated back in Bryan Murray’s day. Let’s just say that whole scenario wasn’t one of the Oilers’ finer moments.

    Jonathan: The “Vish” game occurred in 1979-80, the Oilers inaugural season. Lowe was a promising rookie who seemed to say and do all the right things. Until … one night probably two-thirds of the way through the season, Buffalo came to town and Tony McKegney did or said something that sent Lowe completely off the rails. It was at the far end so I didn’t see everything too clearly, but I think the major offence was kicking. The ref really threw the book at him, something like a double match penalty with a minor thrown in just for fun. What I remember clearly is the Oilers killing that penalty like a team possessed, especially Lee Fogolin and Colin Campbell (yeah, that Colin Campbell). They allowed one goal when the Oilers took yet another penalty and were 3-on-5, but they killed all the rest of it and then scored a shortie with about 20 seconds left in the extended powerplay. The building absolutely fucking erupted, I can tell you, and the end of the PP seconds later prompted a prolonged standing ovation while play went on. You don’t forget moments like that.

    The Oilers ultimately lost that game something like 4-2, but they tied that 12-minute disadvantage 1-1 with one of the more inspired displays of team-bonding in memory. And the legend of Vish was born.

  23. IceDragoon says:

    This really is MacT’s job.

    LOL, and you are so right, Tyler.

    A little bird told me that Burke practices his tirades in the mirror. I have no reason to doubt this.

    MacT is much smarter and pretty fast on his feet. He’d just shred BB.

    As I mentioned in the hijacked D thread, this interview will be linked at Just a Game after the show tonight.

  24. danny says:

    MC, since 2000, Burke has exactly one more SCF playoff win than Lowe… 1-0 is probably closer to 1-0.9 no?

    Now… Lowe was smart enough to not bringup playoff berths… thats waxing poetic that would make Dre proud.

    Ok this was fun… but he was reckless when he used the term ‘pathetic’ multiple times in refernce to Anaheim as a hockey market. I expect more than Burkie to make comments about Edmonton as a player market tomorrow, anc coming out of that mammoth sinkhole, EDM doesn’t need that kind of ink on the front pages anymore.

  25. Ned Braden says:

    It was brilliant!!!

    It’s about time someone called out Burke for the blowhard he is…

    If Bettman would have told Burke to stop taking potshots it wouldn’t have gotten this far, but man it was great theatre.

    Kudos to Kevin Lowe, the only thing he didn’t mention was Burke having to buyout his blunder Bertuzzi…

  26. PDO says:

    MC, since 2000, Burke has exactly one more SCF playoff win than Lowe… 1-0 is probably closer to 1-0.9 no?

    … what? Burke has won 7 playoff rounds as a Duck GM. Lowe has won 3….?

    Bruce:

    I’m not a big Lowe guy by any stretch, and hate that move, but I don’t think it’s relevant. At that time Cory Perry had a helluva lot of question marks around him, I doubt you’d find many people anywhere projecting him to be the guy he became. Yes he could’ve had him, and SHOULD have had him… but saying we’ll gladly take him if you think he’s overpaid is totally different territory imo.

  27. danny says:


    … what? Burke has won 7 playoff rounds as a Duck GM. Lowe has won 3….?

    Edmonton has lost fewer playoff rounds?

    MC was commenting on Lowe being down 1-0 to Burke. While true, EDM did get to a SCF game 7. Burkes team were in the SCF two years before he even took it over.

    Regardless it was just a throwaway comment in response to the 1-0 way of viewing it. Burke has had the better team easily, and has been the better GM… (well don’t tell that to Nonis eh kevin)

  28. IceDragoon says:

    Burke has won 7 playoff rounds as a Duck GM.

    6

    2 in ’06
    &
    4 in ’07

    Dallas just thumped ‘em in round one.

    carry on

  29. PDO says:

    I think at this point, Women just wait for me to say something so they can correct it.

    :-)

  30. rickibear says:

    I was driving to Red Deer to do the child exchange. My ex gets my son for the next three weeks. The most he has been gone is 6 days.

    Needless to say I was down taking him there. The live playing of the interview finnished just before the exchange.

    I was still grinning two hours later into the drive back.

  31. Jonathan says:

    Bruce: Thanks a lot. That’s a great story; I wish I’d seen it.

  32. Traktor says:

    It’s pretty interesting that Lowe finally responds to Burke only a few days after Katz took over the team.

    It was clearly rehearsed and it was great.

  33. Lowetide says:

    rickibear: I can’t imagine how tough that is, hang in there.

    Rehearsed? I don’t think so. Two reasons:

    1. He would have been better. It was a rambling, free-form jazz verbal that at one point had him talking about playing for the Oilers in LA and not considering it the NHL (or some such).

    2. If he’d prepared, he would never have done the interview.

  34. IceDragoon says:

    I think at this point, Women just wait for me to say something so they can correct it.

    :-)

    Unintentially piling on tickles the strangest funny bone.

    sorry, pdo.

    tee hee

    ummm…

    :-)

  35. Doogie2K says:

    Wow, I wonder what McKegney did to deserve it. We may never know.

    Anyway, I say to hell with the nitpicking. For today, Lowe did what he’s needed to do for a while, and stand up for himself and “his boys.” Of course, if I were him, I’d be tempted to take a shot at Burke’s moves from last year (Bertuzzi, MacDonald/Weight, Bryzgalov, the bullshit surrounding Niedermayer), and make a sewer reference of some kind, but then I’m also kind of a dick.

  36. gary b says:

    fucking AWESOME.

    who knows what might happen next in Lowe vs. Burke, but… who cares! everyone knows Burkie should have shut up about all this already. Early on, anyway, it seems like the rest of hockey world (and TSN) think it’s ‘about time’ B(J)urke got a little tast of his own medicine.

    Nice to see K-Lowe get his swagger back (and yes, it might be partially because of all that extra $$$ in the team’s pockets, too).

    should make for an interesting lead-up to puck drop in October.

  37. IceDragoon says:

    rickibear: What Lain said.

    Points 1 & 2 are bang on, Lain.

    I’m sure he had a few regrets, then said “**** it!”, and went to dinner. He then had a more subdued interview on the rights holder shortly after eight. I imagine he said, “No Burke questions.”, before going to air.
    ;-)

    Obviously nothing is pressing.

  38. Bruce says:

    It’s 1-0 in their current jobs though.

    Lest we forget:

    Edmonton 2 Anaheim 1
    Edmonton 2 Anaheim 1
    Anaheim 4 Edmonton 5
    Anaheim 6 Edmonton 3
    Edmonton 2 Anaheim 1

  39. PDO says:

    Bruce: That’s money.

    ID: I’ll forgive you one day if I’m allowed to grace your presence for a lunch ;)

  40. Bruce says:

    MacT is much smarter and pretty fast on his feet. He’d just shred BB.

    Louise: Oh, yeah. He already has.

    “He reminds me of the Wizard of
    Oz. You comb his hair, put a white shirt on, wheel him out in front of the camera and he’ll say whatever you guys want.
    “Clearly it’s a crusade of self-promotion on his part. But what goes around comes around in this league.”

    That barrage still makes my sides hurt after lo these many months. MacT is a linguist, and a cunning one at that. He paints a vivid picture in far fewer than 1000 words.

  41. PDO says:

    Bruce:

    Shred a 0 off of that. There’s a reason, as Mrs. ID is so good at reminding us from time to time, that MacT loves smart players…

    And it’s because he himself is one of the smarter guys around in the league.

    This is in general, but I’m still not sure that the Oilers wouldn’t be better off if MacT and KLowe switched positions.

  42. Bruce says:


    Shred a 0 off of that.

    PDO: Huh?

    Wow, I wonder what McKegney did to deserve it. We may never know.

    D2K: That never got explained very well. There was some speculation at the time that it might have been racially motivated, but I didn’t buy it then and I don’t buy it now. The incident was completely out of character for both guys. The game was untelevised, and being a late start on a Friday night it didn’t get much national media play at all. No Youtube then either… I never did see “footage” of the alleged kick(s); but in the arena Lowe’s rage was palpable, even from 200 feet away. I remember a couple of teammates vigorously shepherding him off the ice. Not much was said in the aftermath about what precipitated it, the team chose to not dwell on it and moved on, and the story had no legs. I don’t think Lowe even got suspended … maybe a game or two, certainly nothing epic.

    Bruce: Thanks a lot. That’s a great story; I wish I’d seen it.

    Jonathan: No problem. I’m full of, uh, stories. If it happened at Northlands Coliseum between 1977-93 there is a high probability that I was there, and a better-than-you-might-expect possibility that I remember it.

    So … aren’t you going to ask me about Randy Holt on Steve Carlson?

    :D

  43. heed says:

    As for the content, I have two general comments. First, the six Cups line was weak, although reminiscent of Dr. Dre’s “Now you wanna run around and talk about guns, Like I ain’t got none, What you think I sold ‘em all, Cause I stay well off”. Kevin Lowe’s six Cups have exactly nothing to do with the job that he’s done running the Oilers since 2000. As a sort of a general putdown, absolutely, 6-1 is wicked. It’s 1-0 in their current jobs though.

    what do you think burke would trade to win a cup as a player than a suit sitting in the stands?

    my guess…

    his ring…

    his wife…

    his children…

    and probably more.

  44. heed says:

    ps i am so swollen with pride i think i am going to drink a couple more beers and go out and stab a californian. a calgarian will do.

  45. Bruce says:

    Heed: Are you “swollen” with pride in the same manner as HBomb?

  46. Asiaoil says:

    This appears to be the first step in addressing the Oilers image problem. Love the EIG guys and all they did – but the group as a whole was in way over it’s head in terms of ownership. Way too much “gosh gee us boys from the sticks are just happy to be here – yuck yuck”. The Oilers have been the ugly kid of the NHL who gets picked on largely because no has retaliated when guys like Burke or the media dolts spout negative bullshit about the team and the town.

    The old approach was to let assholes like Burke spout off – but clearly this has changed under Katz. I predict TSN and other will start getting very different treatment if they keep up the anti-Edmonton line in their stories. The old line about rather being feared than respected has some merit here – and I hope the team attacks anyone who tarnishes its reputation like a pitbull. Do it a few time and they will quit.

    Like I said – we are talking about changing perceptions – and right now that is one of the biggest things hurting us in the UFA market. The gloves are off and it’s about time.

  47. heed says:

    Heed: Are you “swollen” with pride in the same manner as HBomb?

    poor choice of words on my part. i’m just happy to see lowe stick up for himself. the accolades heaped on burke over the last couple of years have been undeserved at best.

  48. Jonathan says:

    So … aren’t you going to ask me about Randy Holt on Steve Carlson?

    Don’t tempt me Bruce, I’ll just keep asking and asking and asking. So what happened with Randy Holt and Steve Carlson?

  49. Doogie2K says:

    MacT is a linguist, and a cunning one at that.

    *snicker* Sorry, I’m 12.

    That never got explained very well.

    I suspected as much. Ah, well, it’s still a good story.

    Love the EIG guys and all they did – but the group as a whole was in way over it’s head in terms of ownership. Way too much “gosh gee us boys from the sticks are just happy to be here – yuck yuck”.

    They were, in a way, a transitory ownership that just happened to last ten years. I mean, they did a heck of a job of recovering the franchise from the damage done during the ’90s, but it was becoming increasingly clear, with the continued post-lockout frugality and veiled relocation threats, that perhaps they should have sold the team off two or three years earlier than they did.

    So … aren’t you going to ask me about Randy Holt on Steve Carlson?

    Ooh, a Hanson brother. This should be good.

  50. PDO says:

    Bruce:

    100 words instead of 1000 ;)

  51. IceDragoon says:

    pdo: Done!
    What are you doing this fall… let’s say around… training camp?
    ;-D

    Bruce: I still think MacT’s first volley was his finest. When asked what he thought about Burke’s third or fourth whinefest…

    “It’s irrelevant, really. Listening to Brian Burke is like trying to take a drink from a fire hose.”

    Painting pictures?
    That’s a freakin’ van Gogh right there.
    LOL

  52. Bruce says:

    Jonathan/Doogie2K: Sure, since you asked. :D It’s a long story, but a good one. (PDO: Sorry, 100 words just won’t cut it … just move on if you don’t want to read war stories from the Scrapping 70s.)

    I’ll never forget that game. It was pre-season 1978, and the NHL-WHA Wars had cooled to the point that the Oilers played a couple of early preseason games against western conference NHL clubs. On this occasion it was Vancouver, probably the very first game between the two franchises although they may have met in a preseason game maybe once before.

    What were very definitely new were Vancouver’s sweaters, the infamous yellow “V” sweaters. It was their very first game with them, and for whatever reason they wore the home yellows, not the road blacks, for a road game. (Believe me, they could have worn those yellows for every single game without fear of confusion, with the possible exception of games in LA where the Kings also wore horrid yellow.) Anyways, these things hadn’t even been through the wash yet, and they were so bright that I had to avert my vision from the Vancouver bench when they all stood for the national anthem. Some psychologist had suggested a new colour scheme idea after years of wearing pacifist blue and green, so they went to yellow, orange, red, and black, with tastefully matching red faces. The idea was to make the Canucks seem bigger, meaner and uglier; for sure they were butt fucking ugly, and the poor bastards wearing them were feeling meaner than the proverbial junkyard dogs.

    That set the stage for one of the most ridiculous games I have ever seen. There were no fewer than ten (10) fights, not really a line brawl, just a whole bunch of individual scraps. I remember one down in my corner, the guys lined up for a faceoff circle, I could see the Oiler’s lips moving as he offered unsolicited fashion advice, and the Canuck just dropped the gloves right off the draw.

    Among all this team-wide distemper was Randy Holt, a fringe NHLer and full-time goon who was trying to catch on in Vancouver after being picked up in the dispersal draft of the disbanded Cleveland Barons franchise. An über-goober who posted 411 PiM in one Central Hockey League season, Holt looked like a character out of Slapshot, specifically Ogie Oglethorpe, right down to the honky Afro. Holt had one scrap in the first period, and was running around like a madman, setting the stage for an eventual showdown with resident Oilers’ heavyweight Dave Semenko late in the second. Big Dave got the better of Holt but in the process was tagged with a game misconduct (for hair pulling, as I recall). Holt was carrying on too but stayed in the game, and I commented at the time that the ref was asking for trouble leaving him in there without a natural dance partner.

    Well it didn’t take long in the third; after serving his major Holt came out of the box and ran around looking for an Oiler, any Oiler. If he was wearing a respectable white sweater, Holt hated him and wanted to take him out.

    He finally caught up with Steve Carlson, who as Doogie2K points really was a character in Slapshot, where he played one of the Hanson Brothers (he was #17, and always in the middle of the trio). Steve was trying to catch on with the Oilers that training camp, and went on to have a pretty good season. His reputation from the movie preceded him, but unlike his (real) brothers Jack and especially Jeff, Steve was not a goon (never got as much as 100 PiM in a season, even when he played for the real-life Johnstown Jets), but a pretty decent checking centre.

    No matter, Holt targeted Carlson and caught up with him behind the net at my end. Holt quickly gained the upper hand and Carlson went down. But in a surreal scene which belonged right in Slapshot, Holt wouldn’t let up but kept whaling on Carlson, then started lifting him up and slamming his head into the ice in a scene painfully reminiscent of the Dan Maloney vs. Bryan Glennie incident that wound up with criminal charges. In this case accessory charges could have been laid against the ref, who was completely out of his element, and the linesmen who stood and watched for far too long before finally pulling the enraged Holt off of the embattled Carlson. It was an ugly denouement to an unforgettable night of pugilism, and the exact moment the game crossed the line from good clean fun to leaving an unsettled feeling in the pit of my stomach about the state of hockey and what was acceptable in the name of sport and entertainment. Holt was suspended for 5 games but in the modern day would have got 30.

    Holt didn’t really catch on in Vancouver, he moved on to the other yellow team, the Kings, where later that season he made NHL history by accumulating 67 PiM in one game (1 minor, 3 majors, 2 misconducts, 3 game misconducts) in the Philadelphia Spectrum. That’s still the NHL record, and in no danger of falling anytime soon. Holt played parts of 10 seasons with 7 different clubs, and including split seasons was a minus player in all 13 of his statistical lines in the register. In 395 games he scored all of 4 goals with 1438 PiM.

    Carlson meanwhile had an interesting career. After playing with his real-life brothers in Johnstown and co-starring with Paul Newman in one of the greatest hockey movies ever filmed, he later became a room-mate of Wayne Gretzky after the Oilers acquired the young phenom later that 1978-79 season. The following season he got his chance in the NHL, playing with the Kings where, ironically, he was a teammate of Randy Holt. Post career he has continued to play the role of Steve Hanson as the fictional brothers rode a standing wave of popularity. Fucking machine may have taken their quarter, but they’ve all done alright in the end.

  53. PDO says:

    ID: Sitting somewhere with you is my guess ;-). You know where to reach me.

    Bruce: Heckuva story.

  54. Dennis says:

    Upon further reflection, Ty does nail how silly the “6-1″ comment is. Lowe was a damn fine player and most assuredly better than Burke, but Burke’s comments come from the management side and right now we now who’s winning that war.

    The other thing was Lowe should’ve never brought a player into the discussion, ie his comment on the suspect selection that was Ryan, and he also brought Keenan into the fray when he brought up the Luongo trade. That was also interesting to me because a lot of us have always been choked over the Pronger deal because further west Nonis was turning a lesser player into Luongo. Also, considering that Lowe admitted there were five teams making offers for Pronger, the argument that his hands were tied can be dropped and we can go back to believing that honest to gawd Lowe believed in Lupul and Smid.

  55. Doogie2K says:

    Holt didn’t really catch on in Vancouver, he moved on to the other yellow team, the Kings, where later that season he made NHL history by accumulating 67 PiM in one game (1 minor, 3 majors, 2 misconducts, 3 game misconducts) in the Philadelphia Spectrum.

    That’s why I remember that name. That guy was Goddamned insane.

    It was an ugly denouement to an unforgettable night of pugilism, and the exact moment the game crossed the line from good clean fun to leaving an unsettled feeling in the pit of my stomach about the state of hockey and what was acceptable in the name of sport and entertainment.

    Yeah, there seemed to be a bunch of those towards the end of the decade. (See also Steve Durbano vs. Bobby Hull, Rick Jodzio vs. Marc Tardif.) It seems from stories and videos I’ve come across that the worst of the excesses died out in the late 70s and early 80s, though there was still plenty of thuggery to be had afterwards, no doubt. Would that be an accurate assessment?

  56. Sean says:

    We need a guy tougher than Parros. 4 games this year and it could get nasty.

  57. Slipper says:

    I think Lowe’s tirade is more reminicent of the Dresta versus Dr. Dre from Easy E’s “Real MuthaF’n G’s”.

    ain’t broke a law in your life, yet every time you rap
    you rap about the guns and knives, just take a good look
    at the Negroe, and you’ll capture the fact,
    that the bastard is simply just an actor,
    who mastered the bang and the slang and the Mental,
    of negroes in Compton, Watts, and South Central
    never ever once have you ran with the turf,
    yet in every verse you claim you used to do the dirt,
    but tell me who’s a witness to your fucking work,
    so you never had no business,
    so save the drama jerk

    Or as Lowe described it: 6-1.

  58. HBomb says:

    6-1 may sound silly based on the fact that Burke is ahead 1-0 in terms of Cups won as a GM, but:

    a) Lots of the pieces of Burke’s team were already in place when he took over, he signed Niedermayer then had Pronger HANDED to him, ironically, by his competitor in this oh-so-entertaining pissing match.

    b) Lowe weas damn close (i.e. a blown game 1 three goal lead or, if you prefer, one flukey 3rd period save by Cam Ward) from having a Cup as a GM as well.

    AND, most importantly:

    c) Winning as a player is WAY more impressive than as a GM. Burke knows it, and Lowe knows it too….that’s why he said it.

  59. David says:

    Lowe is a goofball. What good could possibly come from a bunch of slanderous remarks made publically (“Moron”)? How does it help to call a hockey market “pathetic”? Not a great day to be an Oiler fan.

  60. Jonathan says:

    Jonathan/Doogie2K: Sure, since you asked. :D It’s a long story, but a good one. (PDO: Sorry, 100 words just won’t cut it … just move on if you don’t want to read war stories from the Scrapping 70s.)

    I have no idea why you don’t have your own blog, Bruce. I know I’d read it daily.

  61. HBomb says:

    Lowe is a goofball. What good could possibly come from a bunch of slanderous remarks made publically (“Moron”)? How does it help to call a hockey market “pathetic”? Not a great day to be an Oiler fan.

    Considering the amount of crap Burke has spewed since last July, I’m glad he finally shot back, frankly. Yes, GREAT day to be an Oiler fan.

  62. Bruce says:

    That guy was Goddamned insane.

    Certifiably. Did I mention he also played for the Flames?

    there seemed to be a bunch of those towards the end of the decade. (See also Steve Durbano vs. Bobby Hull, Rick Jodzio vs. Marc Tardif.) It seems from stories and videos I’ve come across that the worst of the excesses died out in the late 70s and early 80s, though there was still plenty of thuggery to be had afterwards, no doubt. Would that be an accurate assessment?

    Yes, I think so. The whole 70s were a mess, really … the Big Bad Bruins had their share of excesses (Ted Green’s stick fight with Wayne Maki being the nadir), while the Broad Street Bullies also won a couple of Cups by taking excess to excess, and weren’t brought down to Earth until Pierre Bouchard hammered Dave Schultz in a one-sided fight in the 1976 SCF.

    A contributing factor was that so-called “major league” hockey expanded from 6 teams to 32 between 1967 and 1974. The pipeline from Europe was producing barely a trickle, so a lot of the career minor leaguers found work. Many of them were ECHL/CHL types. Slapshot was not merely an imaginative fantasy, although it exposed the ridiculousness of the whole scene. But hockey being hockey, it took a few years to realize it was a send-up.

    Before the end of the decade every team was dressing (by necessity) at least two full time goons. The WHA had a never-ending supply oif goofballs it seemed … that 1977-78 season when I first got my season tickets featured all kinds of thuggery. The Birmingham Bulls featured four guys with over 240 PiM: Steve Durbano, Dave Hanson, Frank Beaton, and Gilles (Bad News) Bilodeau. (Earlier in his career when he was an Oiler, Beaton once left town on a road trip with one nickname (Never) and came home with a new one (Seldom).) For their part the ’77-78 Oilers signed Dave Semenko straight out of Brandon, an absolute wild man named Jamie Troy who came out of nowhere, fought the good fight(s), and seemingly disappeared off the face of the Earth — I can’t even find him on the Internet — and a lumberjack defenceman named Ron Busniuk. They had little choice, it was that or be run out of the league.

    There were incidents aplenty. A major one in the late 70s featured Wilf Paiement clubbing Dennis Polonich upside the head with his stick … and Polonich, who spent his whole career asking for something like that, wound up suing and winning a settlement of $850,000 (modern equivalent would be around $850,000,000). Another had the Boston Bruins going en masse into the stands and battling with spectators. I saw a similar incident at an Oil Kings game around 1973 when Medicine Hat’s infamous Gassoff Gang jumped into the stands at the old Edmonton Garden and started whaling on fans. Pre-game brawls were not uncommon, indeed Doug Messier and the St. Albert Saints employed warm-up shenanigans as a deliberate intimidation strategy.

    I realize I’ve rambled beyond what passed for “major league” hockey into the grassroots of the game, but that speaks to the depths of the problem. Hockey in the 1970s wasn’t always a goon show, but far too often that’s exactly what it was.

    It wasn’t cleaned up overnight, but anti-brawling rules and a crackdown against serious/serial offenders, the merger and its attendant contraction, the reduction of draft age, the influx of Europeans, and the arrival of Wayne Gretzky all contributed to change the tide towards the wide-open speed and skill game of the 1980s.

  63. Bruce says:

    Slipper: Brilliant stuff.

    Jonathan: Thanks. Maybe next year.

  64. Lowetide says:

    The Jodzio-Tardif story also belongs in Bruce’s terrific post. I’d love to see you blog, Bruce. Excellent, excellent stuff.

    The thing I remember about those games is that they took forever.

  65. Doogie2K says:

    Oh, Frankie Beaton. The only player in Oilers history to actually be smuggled out of a road city in a damned equipment bag. The WHA could be stupid, but sometimes it could be damned funny.

  66. Bruce says:

    The Jodzio-Tardif story also belongs in Bruce’s terrific post.

    It was, obliquely, as I quoted D2K’s reference of it. I meant to later say “There were incidents aplenty besides the ones you mention …”

    Certainly Jodzio-Tardif belongs on any accounting of the State of the Game in the 70s. There was a thread about that somewhere this year — perhaps on one of your HHoF series, LT? It was an unprovoked assault by a goon on a star, because he was a star, no other reason. Jodzio should have gone to jail. I have only seen poor video of it, and that a long time ago, but the eye-witness accounts seem plain enough.

    Whereas with the Holt-Carlson or Lowe-McKegney incidents, I was an eye-witness, so perhaps I can add some meaningful insight.

    The thing I remember about those games is that they took forever.

    That’s for sure. Boston at New York Rangers used to take four hours.

    I’d love to see you blog, Bruce. Excellent, excellent stuff.

    Thank you kindly, LT. So far I have preferred to do the drive-by thing, to contribute to the discussion points that have already been raised by hardworking bloggers like yourself, Jonathan, BDHS, MC79 and many others. But there are times that my long-winded style might be better suited to posts rather than comments (??? see, I don’t even have the terminology thing down yet). But … I’m thinking about it, maybe in 2008-09 I might give it a shot.

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