Lee Chin, an Irish Hurler, spent the last month with the Vancouver Canucks. He was taking part in “The Toughest Trade” program which takes athletes from different sports across the world and allows them to train and view the everyday doings of a new team. When Lee came back to Ireland, he had some pretty interesting insight on the struggling Canucks.
“The drinking culture they have, I couldn’t believe it. They were lowering pints the day before a game. And that was sitting at lunch.”
“It was after we played a game on a Sunday, and there was a lunch with the alumni team on the Monday. I was invited, with Erik Gudbransonm, and one of his team mates beside him. I had a glass a water. Erik was injured, but I asked his team mate if he was playing tomorrow and he said ‘’yeah, what’s the big deal?’
“And managers and coaches and everyone sitting around. And I was thinking I wouldn’t do this sitting in front of Davy. I wouldn’t do it if I was at home on my own, never mind in front of Davy. But they just believe in it.
“And they have this thing called a ‘change up’, when a player is not on form, not scoring. The manager will call a ‘change up’, and basically that player has to go out and ruin himself for the night, then come back the next day, with the attitude of you just don’t care.
“So they send him out, drink 20 pints, go off with a couple of women, whatever he wants. And come back the next day. That’s the way they live. It’s the culture, what they believe in, letting off steam like that. I don’t know if they look at the science behind it.”
So this story is about 50 percent non story and 50 percent awesome. Lets get the non story out of the way first. This irish hurler was APPALLED that a guy would have a few casuals at lunch the day before a game. Its called being a good host buddy. Most alumni events consist of old guys talking about their glory days for 2 hours. You’ll hear some legendary stories and you’ll also hear some pathetic lies from some guy that had a cup of coffee in the show in ’89 and now thinks he’s your fucking grandfather. Regardless of whose talking, you’re going to want a few casuals to make it through that meal.
On top of that, they were hosting you, a guest, from IRELAND. Isn’t that what the Irish are known for. Housing beers and not getting all emotional? You are a hurler bud, don’t tell me you don’t hit up the local pub for some guinness and bangers and mash the day before a big tilt.
As for the change up idea, I have mixed emotions about it. On one hand, I think it is an awesome idea. I don’t care who you are, after a rough week at the office or school or whatever you do in life, there is nothing better than letting it all out on a Friday night. Black out, puke, order some dominos at 2am, puke again. Then hang around in sweatpants farting for the rest of the weekend and you are ready to go climb the corporate ladder on Monday. Because of this, I believe the same practice could work with NHLers. This practice is actually so mainstream world leaders mandated it in the Geneva Convention.
On the other hand, its the fucking Canucks. The team known for presidents trophies, chocking, biting fingers, and being overall sallys. Its been 8 years since the Hawks blasted past you in the semis, and 7 years since the Bruins took your manhood in the cup finals. Yet here you are, all depressed, still drinking away your pain. Vancouver currently sits in the bottom 10 in the league standings, poised for a high pick in a terrible draft class. They managed to somehow run two elite goalies out of town, and seemingly have no direction. One would think they would be heading towards a rebuild but the signing of Erikson to a massive deal so he can play tiddlywinks with his Swedish buddies says otherwise. Benning (who will be out of a job before you know it) shouldn’t have to be telling these players to drink, they should be boozing on their own looking back at what should have been.
This does however make me wonder, what the Sedins would do if Benning ordered them to have a change up day.
SEDINS CHANGEUP SCHEDULE:
9am- Henrik and Daniel wake up in twin beds
10am- Daily twin lip kiss (locking eyes)
11am- Tandem bike ride into town to local whole foods
noon- Mimosas ordered at brunch with kale omelets, 1 downed by each (concussion like symptoms follow)
1pm- Naps and pedialyte due to tummy aches.
2pm- Daniel wakes up to reoccurring nightmare of Marchand speed bagging his face, Henrik quickly grabs his inhaler.
3pm- Remembering Bennings orders, the boys crack open a 6 pack of Zimas.
4pm- Henrik is buzzed, takes a tumble over IKEA coffee table. NHL fines him $5,000 for embellishment
5pm- Feeling loose,the boys pop on their favorite ABBA CD and karaoke to their favorite song take a chance on me.
6pm- Alex Burrows calls from Ottawa, incoherent, yelling about the Sedins mother. *Burrows number is immediately blocked*
7pm- The boys hit the town for some appletinis!
8pm-Twins get in heated shuffleboard contest with locals at the pub, blow 3-1 lead.
9pm- Back to their bunk beds, in matching onesies, ready for a new day.