First off, this was completely knocked off/inspired by Scott Feschuk’s version of Stephen Harper’s elusive hockey book which appeared in Macleans Magazine (I can’t seem to find it online but it’s absolutely hilarious. Best part? “I love cheering for my side, trash-talking others and rejecting the possibility that any point of view other than my own can posses even trace elements of merit. You can also apply this philosophy to hockey, I guess” ). So. Anyway….I figured while I was waiting for Nadal to show me that he’s still no. 1 in the world, I’d write up a book for Gary Bettman. I mean c’mon, if some guy like Dany Heatley can publish an autobiography, then King Gary can write a book on hockey.
We’ll call it “Hockey as seen through the eyes of Commish Gary”.
Chapter One: The Lost History of Hockey
First off, what is hockey? To quote the highly esteemed Mr. Wiki Pedia, “ice hockey (frequently simply called hockey) is a team sport played on ice”. According to some people, the sport was invented in Canada, but I have sources that suggest that the sport originated in the Arizona-Texas area. How the sport came to Canada is a long and complicated story – too long to explain
to my ghost writer right now in this book. But in short, it involved a man named Bob Balsillie who saw the sport and loved it so much that he took it and brought it back to Canada with him. When he became king of Canada, he made the sport the official sport of Canada and then sent his forces out to demolish the people of Arizona-Texas. Right as the king’s forces reached the doorstep of the kingdom of Arizona-Texas, he offered the people a choice: Face demolition or erase all mention of hockey. The people chose the latter and that, dear readers, is why there is no mention of hockey in Arizona-Texas.
Chapter Two: How I ended up with this job
Well, I started off as just some lawyer. Then I got into basketball because well, as a kid, I used to participate in it a lot (I was one who handed out the towels to the players). Somehow I ended up as the third highest in command which was neat all, but I wasn’t particularly happy being only the third highest. I mean, third? So when I was offered a job to be the president of the NHL my first reaction was “what the hell is the NHL?” and then it was “yeah, sure, I’ll take it.” As soon as I ended up as head of the NHL I had the job description changed to “Commissioner” instead of “President” because being a “Commissioner” sounds better.
Chapter Three: On Being the Commish
It’s great. Who wouldn’t want to wake up every morning knowing that you are the supreme ruler of a major sport? Anything you say, can go. It’s the most amazing thing ever. Quite honestly I have secret designs to become the supreme ruler of the poker universe too. But don’t tell my brother that. But moving on, of course it’s tough to be the
Supreme Ruler of the NHL Commissioner. You have to make all kinda of tough decisions, like, going around the league to different events, handing out the Stanley Cup, hiring competent people to take care of important stuff such as buying my suits. It’s very tough.
Chapter four: On being a fan
Yes, I am a big fan of basketball.
Chapter Five My favorite team
One of the most frequent questions I’m asked is “what is your favorite team?” To which I reply that I don’t have a favorite team. As Commish of the NHL, I don’t believe it would be a good idea to have a favorite team because some people would invariably accuse me of favoritism. Although if I had a favorite team, it would be a certain team in black and gold (no, not the one in Boston) because they’re just so awesome. Plus they play in the United States. PLUS they somehow manage to fill their building. Isn’t that amazing? But like I said, I don’t pick favorite teams. This is all in the hypothetical.
Chapter Six My favorite player
Again, I don’t pick favorites, but if I had to pick one, it’d be Sidney Crosby. Who doesn’t like Sidney Crosby? Did you know that they call him the Anointed One? But really. I don’t pick favorites. Even if he could save the Pittsburgh Penguins, the league and the fate of hockey altogether.
Chapter Seven: On putting more teams in Canada
Chapter Eight: On the recession and how that affects the teams in smaller markets
What recession? There is no recession. There is nothing wrong with the NHL or the teams.
Chapter Nine: On concussions
Did you know that “most concussions occur during player to player contact rather than when a player is checked into a wall”? Isn’t that awful? Could you imagine letting your child witness someone getting a concussion after they’re hit by another player? They should really work to cut down on shots to the head!
Chapter Ten: On fighting
Fighting is bad. I would never let my children watch a sport in which a pile of people beat each other up for no reason. That’s just barbaric. That being said, the NHL sees no reason to change their policies regarding fighting in the league.
Chapters eleven through twenty-five: 600 pages of blank pages