Pretty good ball/entertainment when the Orioles are playing – this is a ball town as much as it is anything sport related, so the much improved turnout a week ago was unsurprising.
What was a surprise was that, in spite of 100-plus fans in attendance, the Orioles don’t seem to have made much money out of the deal.
Nobody collecting even silver at the entrance, no 50-50 or raffle tickets, etc. The concession was periodically busy, which benefits ball, but little else was done to raise the funds the team requires to attend tournaments and championships for which it qualifies.
I know all too well that the few people, mainstay Jim Maniago in particular, who organize the team’s affairs are stretched to the limit, and I applaud them for all their efforts. But there are many regular supporters I think could easily be convinced to chip in at tasks like toonie taking and strip-ticket selling – you know, being a little bit more involved in the maintenance of this excellent representative of the Home of Champions, if someone could find the time to contact and schedule them.
• It seems the Bruins’ Johnny Boychuk dons a cloak of invisibility when he takes the ice. How else could he end up 446th overall in penalty minutes, playing as viciously as he sometimes does.
Three times in the past three playoffs years, twice this month, Boychuck has committed egregiously violent, injury-inducing, “plays,” against: Mason Raymond (deliberately driven into the boards from distance, broken back); Ethan Morrow, (deliberately driven head first into the goal iron from several feet away, causing him to exit the play from dizziness); and now Blackhawks heart and soul Jonathan Toews (forearm shiver to a vulnerable player’s head, causing, probably, an unannounced concussion and Toews removal from further participation in the game).
The result of these, “plays,” for Boychuk in terms of discipline from officials and a league supposedly protecting its players from being injured by flagrant fouls — nothing, nada, not a penalty minute or a suspension for a guy who should already be identified as a repeat offender.
Hockey played by the rules is rough enough. Throwing those rules out the window in a, “special, situation, like a third period, or a playoff round, is negligence by the league and officials.
But not now. Every game they play the way things are is dangerous for opponents and the league seems unable to rein them in.
So, go Hawks – get it over with and yourselves out of harm’s way.
• There has been talk for a few months now, among a few of the usual suspects, that the preservation of memories of the Home of Champions should be undertaken before those remaining who created or watched the pre- and post-wars (the big ones) exploits of local achievers, are gone.
It will be a complex task. Interviews and recording and checking details of those memories from people who hold them will require a lot of time. It will be worth it if a more complete history of the area now known as the Home of Champions and B.C.’s Best Sports Town can be created.
It should, too, be enjoyable to help create that history, whether it ends up in a book or not. So, if you want to take part, step forward. Contacting Brian Pipes or John D’Arcangelo is as good a place as any to start creating a least a process for going forward.