@JoshuaCooper: Burned by Hawt Takes.

Take your puck & shove it, Joshie Poo. Photo from nhlblogs.com

Take your puck & shove it, Joshie Poo. Photo from nhlblogs.com

Dearest Josh Cooper – or Joshie Poo, as you’re so affectionately referred to;

It’s us here in Buffalo. Of course we know what you wrote – what, you didn’t think it would get back to us? Or, more accurately, you knew exactly that it would get back to us, and that’s why you wrote what you wrote – said what you said. See, we know you didn’t mean it, Joshie. We know that you’re stepping up to perhaps the biggest hockey blog in the nation and you’re feeling some pressure. It’s the bigtime now, right? You’ve got to make some controversial statements – step on some toes, break some eggs – in order to get noticed! Well, congrats, kid. You’ve got our attention.

You and I (‘I’ being anyone who watches hockey ever) both know that neither Carolina nor Arizona deserve McDavid or Eichel. We both know that these markets are a novelty at best. Hell, Arizona is a couple of owner votes away from becoming the Hamilton Somethingorothers. And Carolina? It’s Buffalo Lite. The only reason hockey sells down there is that the Buffalo ex-pats miss the rink, and so a couple thousand show up each night and pretend to care, but they’re really just watching the scoring ribbon for Sabres updates. Those infamous Raleigh tailgates for the cup? Buffalo put tailgating on the map, my friend. We’ve stewed and simmered tailgating to a delectable perfection, and branded it as our own. You think the brilliant minds south of the Mason-Dixon Line would come up with an idea like tailgating a hockey game? Again, Josh, those were ex-Buffalonians, showing the hockey world how it is done.

Butt Goal - the 'Yotes most famous play - happened in Buffalo.  Photo from elitedaily.com

Butt Goal – the ‘Yotes most famous play – happened in Buffalo. Photo from elitedaily.com

Curious, don’t you think, that all of the talk about a team in Vegas is just talk? Because hockey wasn’t meant for the desert. While the Coyotes have done everything they can to put a quality product on the ice, the truth is that the most news they’ve gotten in the last few years was “Butt Goal.” Remember that? It happened in Buffalo. Even a series win against the mighty Chicago Blackhawks wasn’t enough to fill the arena. You really think that a generational player like those available this year should be stranded in the desert?

The tragedy of all of this, really, is that I agree with you on some points, and I can see you halfway on others. Edmonton should not get a crack at these players, for all of the reasons you’ve listed, and more. The utter mismanagement of the draft in Edmonton since the Stanley Cup series you’ve referred to leaves some of us fans speechless. How does Oilers management obtain such a strong series of draft picks and handle them so ineptly? Sure, they’ve got some of the best young forwards, but to fail to address defense and goaltending time and time again? Ridiculous. Shameful.

McDavid's already played here.  We're like a second home.  Photo from sportsnet.com

McDavid’s already played here. We’re like a second home. Photo from sportsnet.com

We don’t have that problem here in Buffalo. Our defense may have a couple of holes presently, but our top four are solid, and the second pairing are kids – not even old enough to celebrate with a beer. We’ve got the prospects in the system to support these four, and you know it. The names of our forward prospects are all over the national media. They tore up the World Juniors. They’re killing it in the NCAA. Our goaltenders would be a lot better if they didn’t feel like they were storming the beaches of Normandy every night.

You made a point to talk about growing the game, and you also made a point to mention that Buffalo is a TV market darling. There’s a reason for that, Josh. Buffalo carries the American television market for every major hockey event – Stanley Cup series, Olympic Games, Winter Classics – the number of Buffalonians tuning in is the reason that advertisers take notice at all. This directly addresses any notion of growing the game. Arizona will directly benefit from a generational player coming to Buffalo. More national attention to the Queen City means more advertising revenue, and more revenue shared by the teams. It’s simple math, Josh. No one is tuning in to watch McDavid play in Phoenix. A nation’s worth of ratings come to the NHL when McDavid hits the ice in Buffalo.

Eichel, too.  Photo from nhle.com

Eichel, too. Photo from nhle.com

These are all just tangible reasons that Buffalo deserves one of the top two picks. Hockey as a whole – nationally and internationally – benefits from these players being here. This is Hockey Heaven. We don’t take that idea lightly. We erected a multi-leveled hockey shrine across from the First Niagara Center. It’s already hosted an international Sled Hockey tournament, as well as the IIHF 18U Women’s tournament. It’s been open for less than four months. The FNC itself held a national friendly game, showcasing the talents of some Buffalo prospects, and Jack Eichel. Our relationship with the Erie Otters via Sabre alum Jay McKee got us an OHL game – which we sold out. For an exhibition game. Arizona and Carolina can’t even sell out playoff games.

I don’t blame you, Josh. You’re trying to make a name for yourself, and nothing does that faster than brash statements, and the more ridiculous, the better. You got my attention – you even got me to sit down and write a defense of my beloved city (as if we needed it). I’m sure you’re on the receiving end of some pretty heavy vitriol, and while you deserve it, I apologize for my city. It’s just, we’re not some fly-by-night writer trying to make it big on the internet. We’re Buffalo. You can joke about our weather. You can poke fun at Wide Right and No Goal. You can even mention our four straight Super Bowl losses. Let this be a lesson to you, Josh Cooper of Puck Daddy. Don’t ever – EVER – tell us that we don’t deserve a superior hockey team. We’ll get our pick. In a few years, we’ll get our cup. We’ve paid for it with every blue and gold drop of blood in our bodies.

You can find Josh’s original post here.

Contact me and continue the conversation: @SchlagsWrites on twitter, Schlags Writes on facebook



14 Comments on “@JoshuaCooper: Burned by Hawt Takes.”

  1. erikwollschlager January 22, 2015 at 12:16 pm #

    Reblogged this on ewollschlager and commented:

    Yahoo keeps pulling the link from the comments. Keep posting it so the eyes that matter can see it. Thanks!

  2. Ps Daley January 22, 2015 at 12:21 pm #

    Take that.

  3. grantanthony January 22, 2015 at 1:41 pm #

    Small fry in buffalo

  4. grantanthony January 22, 2015 at 1:42 pm #

    small fry

  5. Syn January 22, 2015 at 2:44 pm #

    We got a lot more than defunct Buffalo inhabitants watching hockey down here in Carolina, buddy. Get a clue!

    • Eric January 23, 2015 at 9:22 am #

      Good for you being part of the small percentile that actually cares about hockey. So tell me, how does a franchise that is averaging just a little over 12k a game in a 19k seat arena deserve a superstar as Cooper suggested? Will McDavid or Eichel magically turn the franchise around? The Hurricanes couldn’t even sell out games during the finals when they won the cup! So again, thanks for being part of the small portion that enjoys the game.

  6. Syn January 22, 2015 at 2:46 pm #

    And where’s your cup, BTW? Oh yeah, the Flyers have it. What a joke.

    • James Kriger January 24, 2015 at 1:17 am #

      so because you have a cup that automatically dismisses the fact that you cant get any fans to go to your games? interesting logic when you consider most of your seats are filled with the opposing teams jersey on.

      • Craig Wheeler January 25, 2015 at 1:52 am #

        Especially when the Sabres come to town.


  1. Miss Canada’s outrageous hockey tribute; Rinaldo’s hearing set; Bieksa out indefinitely (Puck Headlines) | So Stadium Status - January 23, 2015

    […] • A rebuttal to Josh’s piece on Buffalo and Connor McDavid. [What’s Going On In Buffalo] […]

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