On the heels of the story coming out about Brian Burke offering to rent a barn in Lake Placid to fight Kevin Lowe a few years ago to end their Dustin Penner feud, I got to thinking: Why stop there? There should be an NHL version of Celebrity Wrestling. It could be a 10 fight card and be shown on Pay-Per-View. (The proceeds could go to help fund the lower-revenue teams.) Here would be my dream card of matches:
Special guest ring announcer Pierre McGuire (love him or hate him) gets the crowd of to a rousing start with a string of his catch-phrases and then a “Lets Get Ready to Rumblllleeee” which half of the sold out crowd cheers and half jeers.
Match 1 – Featherweights:
Nate Gerbe, 5’5″, 178 lbs
Martin St. Louis, – (generously listed at) 5’9″, 177 lbs
Two of the “smaller” NHL forwards would go at it toe-to-toe in a high-flying, Luchador-style match with an emphasis on speed and skill rather than power and brute strength. Perennial Lady Byng finalist St. Louis uses his veteran smarts to outwit the younger Gerbe and makes him tap out to the “cross-face chicken wing” (I just had to use that line!)
Match 2 – The “Pump My Tires” Tag Team Goalies Match
Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider
Tim Thomas and Tuuka Rask
This one arises from the Stanley Cup finals last season where Luongo felt disrespected by Thomas, who responded with “I guess I didn’t realize it was my job to pump his (Luongo’s) tires.” The backups are involved because Luongo has recently seen a backup role and Thomas is 37 years old, after all. Expect Brad Marchand and Maxim Lapierre to make an appearance as the weasely “third men in”.
Match 3 – The “Quoteable/Unquoteable” coaches over the top rope Battle Royale
John Tortorella vs Ron Wilson vs Ken Hitchcock vs Brent Sutter vs Paul MacLean vs Jacques Martin vs Barry Trotz vs Bruce Boudreu vs Mike Babcock vs Dale Hunter vs Jack Capuono vs Noel Picard
Some of the league’s most quoteable coaches (Wison, Torts, Hitchcock) as well as some who are not so exciting to listen to or who haven’t quite earned the reputation yet (Martin, Capuono, Picard) lock horns in an over the top rope battle royale for the title of grand pubbah of the NHL coaching ranks. Who will have the power to toss Hitchcock (or how many will have to team up to get him out)? Who will mess with Babcock or Trotz? Will Torts bring a foreign object in his tights?
Match 4 – The “You’re on my turf now” Goalie Equipment match
Emery has had to fight guys who are not wearing goalie equipment. In this match, one of the younger tough guys in the NHL will don the goalie’s monkey suit and pads, and go to battle Sugar Ray Emery in his equipment . Rinaldo will find out how tough it is and Emery will get even more credit for being one of the toughest hombres in the NHL.
Match 5 – Brothers-in-arms triple threat tag team match
Eric and Jordan Staal
Andrei and Sergei Kostitsyn
Daniel and Henrik Sedin
In this every-team for themselves brawl, the Kostitsyns and the Sedins will inevitably join forces to try and match the intensity and Canadiana of the Staals, who are eventually joined by brothers Marc and Jared to even the odds.
Match 6 – The Giant vs 3 Dwarves handicap match
Erik Karlsson, Marc-Andre Bergeron and Brian Campbell
In honor of Andre the Giant, Big Z takes on 3 of the smallest, most skilled d-men in the NHL. Can the quickness and agility of the little trio outmatch the brute strength of the Bruins’ captain. My guess is Chara double-chokeslam’s Bergeron and Campbell but then Karlsson’s dropkick off the top rope stuns Chara enough to allow all three to jump on him for the pin.
Match 7 – The “over and over again” match
Since these two pugilists square off almost every time the Leafs and Sens play each other (and both are in the lineup), why not have them go at it this time. Leafs fans in attendance boo Daniel Alfredsson when he is shown on the jumbotron and Carkner avenges his captain’s honour by KO’ing Orr with the next punch.
Match 8 – The “Super-Pests” no-disqualification match
Two of the most annoying players to play against use dirty tactics like pokes in the eye, biting, scratching and low blows in this “anything goes” battle. At the match’s bloodiest moment, Cooke has a change of heart (like he claims to have done on the ice this season) and instead of hitting Ott with the chair he has at the ready, he instead shakes hands with his opponent and they share a hug.
Match 9 – The “Sloppy Seconds” Grudge Match
Dion Phanuef (w/Elisha Cuthbert)
The title of this match is self-explanatory, and it gives Phaneuf the chance to avenge Cuthbert’s honour. After pinning Avery for the win, Phaneuf invites his main squeeze into the ring for a bonus shot in the “pills” for Avery’s comments.
Match 10 – Superstar Square-off
The two will forever be linked, and the Russian Machine and the NHL’s golden boy square off, with Oveckhin announcing “I will break you” before the match begins. Ovi starts out like a house on fire, but inexplicably he runs out of gas and allows Crosby, who was seemingly invisible at the start of the match, to catch up and eventually make the Russian tap-out.
Those are 10 matches I would like to see.
What about you? What NHL personalities would you like to see battle either to solve an ongoing rivalry or just becasue it would be entertaining?
Thanks for reading and as always, comments are welcomed.
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