Michael Rand started RandBall with hopes that he could convince the world to love jumpsuits as much as he does. So far, he's only succeeded in using the word "redacted" a lot. He welcomes suggestions, news tips, links of pure genius, and pictures of pets in Halloween costumes here, though he already knows he will regret that last part.
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Happy Saturday! Today is, of course, Hockey Day Minnesota, the now-annual celebration of local hockey (and excuse to play high school games outdoors). I've always liked this event, because it feeds into the "State of Hockey" marketing that the Wild created a decade ago. It may not apply to the entire state, but it's nice to have one thing that's different about our state. So I encourage you: sit down and watch some outdoor hockey this morning. Head down to your local arena to catch a game tonight. Be a Minnesotan; be part of our tradition. It's Hockey Day!
A few thoughts and some good reading for you:
*We start with hockey - of course - and the story of how Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke became Canada's leading advocate for gay athletes. It's a really touching story, and heartbreaking, and thought-provoking. And while we're talking hockey, I really enjoyed Michael Russo's profile on Andrew Brunette on the occasion of Bruno's 1000th NHL game. Brunette truly has to be in the running for "best NHL player ever that couldn't beat most goalies in a footrace."
*While we're in profile mode: why not tackle SI's profile of Jake Plummer, the man who did what we'd all like to believe we could do, and walked away before he'd stayed too long. (Including bonus education about the game of handball!)
*Via commenter fasolamatt is this week's fasolalink: some guidance on when to use substitutes in a soccer match. Given that fasolamatt has a long-lost twin that referees state soccer matches, this seems oddly appropriate.
*We have some proof that things are looking up for the Timberwolves: the team's TV ratings are up 86 percent, second in the NBA to only Miami. Kevin Love continues to work his magic, even through the television screen.
*And finally: I think I need to check out this Onion SportsDome show on Comedy Central, because this is truly inspired genius. It's the "Kwame Brown Lottery," a (fake, of course) look at which team has to be saddled with the failed former #1 draft pick. (Hey, at least the Wolves finally won one of these things.)
That's enough for me. Enjoy the weekend, and the warm weather. You've earned them both.
Hocku of the week
Welcome to the latest installment of Rocket's Red Glare, where Commenter Rocket attempts (and sometimes succeeds) to talk about an NHL topic in fewer than 2,000 words. Rocket?
As you might remember from last week’s post, I had the rare opportunity to actually attend the NHL’s Skills Competition and All-Star Game. I wanted to share some insights about the experience with you and, as any true hockey fan knows, the best way to do that would have been through interpretive dance. Unfortunately, the head oligarch of this blog claims that I would have to go through many complicated steps, including digitally filming the performance and “uploading” it – whatever the [redacted] that means – regardless of the many hours I have already been choreographing and practicing. Whatever you say, Comrade RanBball. I guess I’ll just use the paltry English language to fumble my way through some stray observations instead of truly sharing the experience with everybody through movement, art, and soul.