Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Review of Literature found in my Basement Volume 2: Slap Shots

Kevin Nelson. Slap Shots: Hockey's Greatest Insults. 
(1995, New York, NY: Fireside).

This is just a collection of interesting quotes on a variety of topics from a variety of sources. I picked my favorites below. I included about 1% of a book full of great quotes that highlight both sides of various debates and arguments and perspectives in hockey. Lots of the quotes I chose, especially in the latter chapters, agree with my own opinions, but keep in mind that the book has handfuls of quotes that accurately represent both sides, without the author taking a real stance on an issue. He just presents the information, and the information in most cases being the quotes. A lot of times it just does a great job of highlighting the lack of truth in any given situation, whether it be the Summit Series or who is the best hockey player of all-time or if the game is played the right way, and so on. I'd love to read an updated version. God knows there's been millions of quotes in the past 10+ years that are gold.

    Chapter 1: A Short History of Hockey
    • I went to the fights the other night and a hockey game broke out. - Rodney Dangerfield 
    Chapter 2: And Now, a Look at the Game Today
    • Seeing Bernie Federko in a Red Wings uniform was unnatural, like hearing Neil Young doing rap song. - Brett Hull
    • I was Vancouver's only right wing who came with love handles. - Hull
    • At age 17. I was headed for donuts. - Hull
    • He could snap a puck through a refrigerator door - Wayne Gretzky on Mario Lemieux
    • Oh Gretzky, sit down! - fans of Eric Lindros' junior hockey team mocking him whenever he made a mistake
    • Watch Mark Messier when he loses a faceoff. He lays a beating on the guy right there at the draw. - Lindros on Messier
    • If Eric Lindros is God, I want to go to hell. - some sports writer
    • Does a one legged duck swim in a circle? - Kelly Chase to a reporter after asked if his team was feeling pressure during a losing streak
    • Ducks fiercely defend their territory. Ducks still together. And when two ducks fight, well, one duck will grab the other duck with his beak and hold him, then pummel him with his wings. - LA zoo curator defending the name of the new Mighty Ducks franchise
    • I haven't gone to have my teeth checked in 14 years. I had them drilled [when I was playing]. To me, that drill is a shattering experience. - Derek Sanderson
    • Quote from author: "After...the Canucks won game 1 of the series [in the 1994 finals series against the Rangers], the headline of a Vancouver newspaper trumpeted "The Joy of Hex!"...Fans in Vancouver chanted "1940! 1940!" [during the series against the Rangers]. 
      • The reason I added this quote was because it's hilarious irony, and is TYPICAL VANCOUVER! haha, seriously though. They win one game and start mocking the Rangers, who supposedly were cursed because they hadn't won a Cup in 54 years...until they beat the Canucks in this series. They won Game 7 in New York in OT. And guess what? Vancouver rioted.
    Chapter 3: The Great One
    • Wayne Gretzky is almost impossible to check. The Theory is, ride him off the puck. But how are you going to bodycheck him? The only way to do it is to hit him when he's standing still, singing the national anthem. - Harry Sinden
    • Some guys play hockey. Gretzky plays 40 MPH chess. - sportswriter Lowell Cohn
    • I've held women and babies and jewels and money, but nothing will ever feel as good as holding the Cup. - Gretzky
    • I look like the guy who bags your groceries at the supermarket. - Gretzky
    • When I'm on the ice I can barely see the goalie. If you ask a 50-goal scorer what the goalie looks like, he'll say the goalie's just a blur. Ask a 5-goal scorer and he'll say the goalie looks like a huge glob of pads. I'm seeing the net, he's seeing the pads. - Gretzky
    • Nobody played better defense on me than [Steve] Kasper [of the Boston Bruins]. When I got married I half expected to see Kasper standing at the altar in a tux - Gretzky on Kasper "shadowing" him
    • Shadows usually aren't too bright. If I suddenly went to into the men's room, they'd probably follow me there. - Gretzky on "shadows"
    • Some guys have missiles for shots, but if it takes three months to load up and fire, what good is it? - Gretzky
    • {DAMMIT I WISH I HAD THIS QUOTE 6 HOURS AGO FOR MY PAPER}: I know fighting brings some people into the building. But how many people does fighting keep out of the building? - Gretzky
    • He's got everybody in New York thinking he's an expert on the game. The truth is, he's not very knowledgeable. He once told me that I should not take anything he writes seriously, since most of the time he was just saying things to rile people up. - Gretzky on Stan Fischler  
    • I hated that doll. Every arena I'd go to on the road, that doll would be hanging from somebody's noose. Or on fire. Or both. - Gretzky on the Gretzky doll 
    • Hey Gretzky, who the hell do you think you are anyway? - Jim Craig, while in net for the Atlanta Flames in a game against Gretzky
    • A writer hung that one on me. I didn't really like the name then and it still embarrasses me now. - Wayne Gretzky on being dubbed "The Great One" at age 10
    • It is not a closely guarded secret that the most celebrated hockey player of the 1980s was Wayne Gretzky, the national treasure dealt off to Los Angeles by the meat-packer owner of the Edmonton Oilers, Peter Pocklington, who, unimpeded by sentiment or passion, may have mistook him for a side of pork. - Trent Frayne on "The Trade"
    • Gordie How was cool. Not only was he this great player who scored more goals than anybody else, he looked cool, with his hair always perfectly slicked back and those eagle eyes starig holes in people. - Gretzky
    Three Practical Jokes that Gretzky's Teammates Played on Him after he joined the Pros:
    1. Eyebrows shaved. His eyebrows were painted on for four weeks, until they grew back.
    2. Shaving cream in his hair while sleeping on a jet. Gretzky woke up, then got all the way to baggage claim before realizing his head was a gooey white mop.
    3. Shoes stolen on a flight. One time he walked barefoot through an entire airport; no one would tell him where his shoes were.
    Chapter 4: The Fighting-est Game Around
    • When the Stanley Cup is at stake, I can stand any amount of pain. - Cyclone Taylor
    Chapter 5: Hockey Goons, or Tough Guys We Love To Hate
    • The Flyers don't want to fight you one to one. They want to fight you nineteen to one. - Jerry Korab
    • I'll tell you something about Dave Schultz. My old lady can punch a lot harder than him - Denis Potvin
    • What's do a school and the Hockey Hall of Fame have in common? Bob Kelly doesn't have a chance to get into either one. 
    • Guys, you can kill me. But you'd better go ahead and do it, because I know who you are, and I'll come back and take care of each of you in turn. - Terry O'Reilly to the Broad Street Bullies
    • I reach back and take what I can find in the back of my hockey pants and I throw it at the other guy -  Johnny McKenzie's  response to a child's question of what he did when he saw a player coming to fight him
    • I'd like to gouge somebody's eyes out with this stick. - Wayne Cashman, during a game, directed at the referee.
    Chapter 6: Don Cherry Speaks. (And Speaks! And Speaks!)
    • I know why the referees don't call many penalties when the Bruins and Flyers are playing. Either they're hoping they kill each other, or they can't figure out which team they hated the most. - Don Cherry
    • Cherry's jingoistic fervor makes Rush Limbaugh look like a card carrying member of the Communist Party - writer Anthony Reilly
    Chapter 7: Goalies
    • Playing goal is like getting shot at - Jacques Plante
    • There is no position in sport as noble than goaltending - Vladislav Tretiak 
    • I never shake hands after a game, because I don't believe in it. - Gerry Cheevers
    Chapter 8: Coaches: The Men Behind the Bench

    • Coaching is like being a king. It prepares you for nothing. - Herb Brooks
    • I think that in my day asking for discipline was much easier than it is now. The salaries weren't all that great and there was always somebody looking over your shoulder trying to get your job. Today you've got so many teams, a player can tell a tam that if they don't want him he'll go across the street and play for someone else. I admire any coach who can get it out of present players. - Milt Schmidt
    • Abrupt, straightforward, without flair or charm, he seems cold and abrasive, sometimes obnoxious and controversial, but never colorful...He is complex, confusing, misunderstood, unclear in every way but one. He is a brilliant coach, the best of his time. - Ken Dryden on Scotty Bowman
    • If I had been perfect I don't think he would have been satisfied. He was constantly badgering me from behind the bench. If nothing happened during the game that he could yap about, he'd start hollering about an earlier game, even if he hadn't been involved in it. When he questioned me it was always in a sneering, sarcastic way, as if he was trying to convince me I was inferior. - Bruce Hood, former NHL ref, on Scotty Bowman
    Chapter 9: Before They Wore Helmets: Star of Yesterday

    • One key element to winning a faceoff is cheating. You've got to cheat because it's too difficult to win most of them fair and square. - Derek Sanderson
    • The sweepcheck is a great play, but not too many guys use it anymore, because hockey players are mass produced in Canada and most kids are no longer taught the subtleties of the game. - Derek Sanderson
    • We have tougher workouts in practice than we've had in our games with the Blues. - Derek Sanderson, during Bruins Cup Finals series vs St. Louis in 1970
    • He had as foul a mouth as any player I ever came across...Some nights he'd stand 10 feet away from me and call me a 'fucking idiot', or unleash a torrent of abuse. - Bruce Hood, former NHL ref
    • Under current conditions hockey can't be played. The once intricate, balanced game has disintegrated into a mass mugging on skates. - Ed Linn, author
    • The game of hockey is simply not the game it was in my day. Shooting was more accurate then. Passing cleverer. Stickhandling was an art practice not by just a few but by many. - Rocket Richard.
    • You're working a game and you see a player down. You know that Howe did it. But how can you prove it? - Vern Buffey, former NHL ref
    • It's a strange sensation coming in on you with his eyes popping like headlights. - Don Simmons, former NHL goalie, on Maurice Richard
    • His nerves are as taut as trout lines. If he had to keep the tension bottled up within himself, he'd probably blow up. Luckily hockey provides a release for the nervous tension that twists his stomach into knots and threatens a nervous breakdown. - Vince Lunny, author, on Maurice Richard
    • He was already very standoffish. He reminded me of members of the English aristocracy of Canada who tend to look down on the French-Canadians as second-class citizens. - Maurice Richard on Clarence Campbell
    • I never really liked him as a person. He always struck me as snobbish. When you talked to him he would look somewhere else, not straight at you. - Maurice Richard on Clarence Campbell
    • What I've learned is that whatever you do in hockey, you should cheat at it. Everyone cheats in hockey. It's unbelievable how much you can get away with - if you do it when no one is looking, of course. - Tom Lysiak
    • Keep your head up, and get your hair cut. - Boom Boom Geoffrion on how to make it in the NHL
    Chapter 10: The International Game

    • Bobrov's Bobcats will become Pavlov's kittens. - Ted Blackman, columnist, on Canada beating the USSR going into the Summit Series
    • The thing that shamed me, and I guess many of us, was not the loss. That was nothing - one team playing hockey at its best and deserving to win. But when grown Canadians wearing their nation's name on their backs get chippy, cheaply chippy, I feel badly for us. The night when we show that we can't dish it out, we can't take it either. - Scott Young, writer, after game 1 of the 72 Summit Series when USSR beat Canada 7-3.
    • ...the fat and happy NHL establishment that has been content to sit back and just rake in the money while the skills of the game have gone to pot...It is already plain that the upstart Soviets play a sounder, better, and more exciting hockey than is seen in the NHL. - Eric Whitehead of the Vancouver Province after Game 4 of Summit Series.
    • I think the Lord himself gave that goal to Henderson. It was a beautiful goal and a great surprise. Seconds earlier, Paul had fallen down behind the net, and I didn't even notice him. Do I dream about that goal? I can say with a smile, I think about it every day of my life. - Vladislav Tretiak, reflecting on Paul Henderson's Summit Series-winning goal. 
    • Our capacity for self-delusion seems limitless. - Jim Kearney of the Vancouver Sun after Canada won the Summit Series.
    • Instead of blaming our side for inept play, let us reflect a little on what Team Canada's humiliating loss to the Soviets tells us about ourselves as Canadians. First, our capacity for self-delusion. Seldom since Goliath contemptuously looked at David can an opponent have been so grossly underrated as we underrated the Soviets...But there is probably a more fundamental reason for Team Canada's deficiencies. The rampant commercialization of hockey in North America...The NHL All-Stars are representing this country by the grace and favor of fourteen American clubowners. We deluded ourselves by supporting that we could sell our national game - like our national economy - to the highest bidders and still excel in our own right...If Team Canada loses, let us not accuse it of letting Canada down. In its shortcomings, as in the 'Owned in the USA' brand of most players, it probably represents us all too faithfully. - Toronto Star proposing that if Team Canada were to lose the Summit Series, it was essentially due to American commercialism
    • He pats you on the back, but always lets you know he has the knife in the other hand. - Buzz Schneider on Herb Brooks coaching style
    • I can remember times when I was so mad at him I tried to skate so hard I'd collapse...So I could say to him, 'See what you did.' - Dave Silk on Brooks
    • Your victory was one of the most breathtaking upsets, not only in Olympic history but in the entire history of sports. - President Jimmy Carter to the US Olympic Team after the 1980 Miracle on Ice
    • We let those guys take the stupid penalties. It's always that way [against the Americans]. Those guys are a little bigger. They always try to intimidate Europeans. We knew that we are a better team if we play our game, let them push around, do that kind of junk. - Mika Nieminen of Team Finland after they beat Team USA 6-1, 1994 Olympics
    • If a tie is like kissing your sister, we can only assume a hockey tie with France is like French-kissing your sister. - Bob Kravitz, sportswriter, on Team USA's 4-4 tie with France, 1994 Olympics
    • I don't think [the Olympics] should be an exercise in some sort of vacation from their regular season. To come over and play 8 games, then go back to their regular season, I don't like that idea. I don't think that's what the Olympics are all about and I think something would be lost from Olympic competition if that happened. - Tim Taylor, Team USA coach, 1994 (the last Olympic games without NHL players)
    • People say that they want it, but if the US Dream Team didn't do well, there probably wouldn't be much of a response. Olympic fans watch Olympic hockey, but that doesn't mean they'll watch the NHL. - Sandy Grossman, TV sports director 
    Chapter 11: Fans

    • The hockey lockout has been settled. They've finally stopped bickering, and they can get down to some serious bloodshed. - Conan O'Brien, after the 94-95 half-season lockout.
    • Sometimes you think those guys must have come out of the chimp cages at the Bronx Zoo. - Cherry Cheevers on New York fans.
    • The goddamned people are nuts. They're out of their minds. If I had known this would happen, I would have rooted for the Bruins - a Philly sportswriter on Philly fans, after they rioted following the Flyers 1st cup win in 1974
    • The fans involved in the fight are alive and well. 18 Bruins players couldn't hurt them. - Scoreboard message at Philly Spectrum after Bruins players went into the stands to fight Philly fans during a game
    • A partial list of things that hockey fans have thrown onto the ice:
      • Dead fish
      • Coins
      • Fruits of all types, particularly tomatoes
      • Beer
      • Cans
      • Boxing gloves
      • Iron bolts
      • Bricks
      • Wood blocks
      • Firecrackers
      • Chairs
      • Armrests of chairs
      • Seat cushions
      • Toilet paper
      • Peanuts
      • Ink bottle
      • Marbles
      • Lightbulbs
      • Programs
      • Rotten eggs
      • Live chicken
      • Dead turkey
      • Dead rabbit
      • Squid
      • Octopi
      • 3 pigs
      • Toe rubbers
      • Hats
      • Sugar packets
      • 45 rpm photograph record
      • Water bottles
      • Cigarette lighter
      • Lit cigarettes
      • Rubber chicken
      • Puck with string attached to it
      • Trash of all types
      • Easter bonnets
      • Cherry bombs
      • Soft drinks
      • Confetti
      • Trailer hitch
      • Batteries
      • Galoshes
      • Girdles
      • Beefsteaks
      • Buttons
    Chapter 12: Slapshots

    • "Great Lines About Bad Teams"
      • Here's how bad the Islanders are: They've got Czechs defecting to get away from them - The Sporting News
      • The groundhog saw his shadow today. You know what that means in Ottawa? Six more weeks of losing - Disgruntled Ottawa fan
    • "Great Lines about Slow-Footed Skaters"
      • You skate like you're carrying a piano on your back. But do you have to stop and play it too?
      • We're so good defensively because we're so slow that none of our defensemen can get up the ice fast enough to be caught by the other team's offense. - Keith Allen, former Flyers coach
    • Bob Kelly was so dumb that his name was the only name that was written on the Stanley Cup in crayon. - Gene Hart, broadcaster
    • He better get married soon because he's getting uglier everyday. - Mark Recchi on Flyers teammate Stewart Malgunas
    • He looked like Bobby Orr out there. Some nights, however, he looked like an iron ore. - Tom Webster, former coach, on Rob Blake

    No comments:

    Post a Comment