August 26, 2011
(Ed. Note: Our series "Puck Daddy's Guilty Pleasures" features puckheads from all walks of life answering questions about their own hockey-related guilty pleasures. It will run daily during the month of August. Have a suggestion for a "Guilty Pleasures" guest blogger? Hit us on email. Enjoy!)
Today's Special Guest: Dave Dameshek, host of NFL.com's "The Dave Dameshek Football Program" and a Pittsburgh Penguins fan. From his previous broadcasting stops on ESPN Radio, the Adam Carolla Radio Show and the 'Daves of Thunder' podcast, to his written work on 'Jimmy Kimmel Live', 'The Man Show' and NFL.com, Dave always agrees with what he's got to say.
1. The Player You Most Love To Hate
Where to begin?
The well of hate in my heart runs deep. Mark Messier is the dirtiest legend in sports history since Ty Cobb laced up his sharpened spikes. DC's Twin Towers of Filth, Dale Hunter and Dino Ciccarelli, were more vile — and were together longer — than Jon & Kate.
But let's go with Claude Lemieux(notes), a dirty creep who should've been required to wear 'Claude L' on his nameplate so as not to tarnish what 'Lemieux' means (in French, "the best"; and in NHL history, also "the best").
Or maybe it's the Flyers. All of them. Especially you, Jagr. And Berube. And Hartnell. And Carcillo. And Hextall. And Poulin. I'll stop there. But I could go on. And on. And on.
2. Other Than Your Own, The Team You Can't Help Rooting For
Somewhere at the bottom of a box in the basement, I have a Dale Hawerchuk road blue #10 Jets sweater that I got in the early '80s. Guess it's time to dig it out, if only for opening night in Winnipeg.
3. Favorite Fight or Brawl of All-Time
Oct. 17, 1984: Mario Lemieux's home debut (six days after scoring a goal in Boston on the first shift in the first game of his career). After assisting on a goal in the game's first minute with a gift-wrapped pass that even Doug Shedden couldn't miss, #66 came to blows with the overmatched Gary Lupul. How bad was the beating Lupul took? His goalie, John Garrett, had to jump in and save him. Ironic, considering that for the better part of the next two decades, no skater could save his goalie from Lemieux.
4. The Hideous-Looking Hockey Jersey You Secretly Love The Most
I hate the Flyers and Islanders as much as I hate any team in any sport, but I love the '70s-style getups they're currently wearing. Which makes me hate myself.
(Also receiving vote: the Devils' red-and-green; the Whalers' kelly green; the Kings' home gold)
5. Your Favorite Hockey Cliché (terminology, traditions, announcer-speak, etc.)
You can't beat the ref's signal for boarding.
It looks like the sort of threatening gesture one of Al Capone's goons might make to someone late on their monthly "payment".
6. The Injury You Couldn't Stop Staring At (Non-Skate Lacerations Only)
Ever the goal scorer, Brashear still looks ready to take a pass in spite of being unconscious.
7. Your Favorite Cheesy Hockey Reference in Popular Culture
As if I need to remind anybody, the classic 1993 film 'Untamed Heart' — starring Christian Slater as a dishwasher with a baboon heart and Marisa Tomei as his girlfriend — features a scene in which (spoiler alert!) the doomed couple attend a Wings/North Stars game in the Twin Cities. Slater even catches a puck that's inexplicably wristed directly into the seats (presumably leading to a delay of game penalty).
Here's a clip — I think you'll agree the fact that it's been dubbed over in Spanish doesn't affect the intensity of the play on the ice or the passion in the stands. Call me a softy, but I think it's just beautiful that Tomei and her baboon-hearted fella are so excited to be at a game in the team's final season in Minnesota, they nearly engage in a vigorous lovemaking session right there in their seats.
8. Finally, What's The Thing You Secretly Respect Gary Bettman For The Most?
So many things for which he can be criticized, but Bettman deserves a pat on the back for overseeing the creation and development of the Winter Classic.
As the quality of the January 1st bowl games continues to dip, watching two hockey teams play in the snow has emerged as the can't-miss sporting event of New Year's Day. Now if only he'd listen to my advice and make it a doubleheader with the second game being played by the Kings and Ducks on the Santa Monica Pier.
We know Bettman's interest in growing the sport in southern climates — how better to showcase it than with bikini-clad girls and the Pacific Ocean as the backdrop?