Monday, July 07, 2008


Mediot of the Day: Jim Kelley

by Jes

Jim Kelley, as Dominik Hasek will tell you, is one of those pasty, overweight sports writers that likes to think himself as above the NHL players that provide him with the means to make a living. You know, the 'nerd' who likes to chop down the 'jock' any chance he gets.

Kelley's latest verbal diarrhea sees him chastise Mats Sundin for *gasp* actually telling NHL GM's that he's unsure about if he wants to play hockey next season, instead of signing the first big offer that came his way.

I do have a problem that he waited until after pretty much all the offers were on the table before he announced that decision.

Given the number of hints he gave out between the end of the regular season and the day before the start of the silly season, Sundin's proclamation wasn't totally unexpected, but do you really he didn't come to this conclusion until late in Day Two of the bidding for his services?

I don't think so. (snip)

Had Sundin opted out before the start of free agency, don't you think that it's at least possible that the Vancouver Canucks might have targeted another centre or a player who could play centre; a Marion Hossa might not have been a perfect fit, but a Brian Rolston might have gotten a good deal, maybe even a better one (and one he wanted to accept) that he settled for in New Jersey.

Kelley is his very finite wisdom declares that Mats should personally call each and every GM who bid on his services to tell them to go on as if he's not going to be part of their plans. Somehow, it's Mats' fault if a particular GM didn't have a Plan B.

... uhh ... OK

So, Mats should tell the GM's what they already know?

You'd have to be a complete moron, or Mike Gillis, to put all of your eggs in one basket with one potential free agent signing. If you are a smart GM, you budget $X for free agent signings, and make signings up to $X, dishing out offers to various free agents until that budget room is used up.

ANY GM worth their salt would be making offers to other free agents, and then, if Mats should come back a week later and say "OK", the GM can say, "Sorry, but you were too slow. The offer is off the table." A smart GM does not make an offer to just ONE free agent, and then sit on their hands waiting for an answer.

Mats has every right to take as damn long as he wants to sign any deal (and he'll be back, we all know that), and doesn't need to tell the GM's anything. It's not as if Mats is spouting BS out there and making false promises. He's a FREE agent, and can do as do well as he pleases.

Why should every potential free agent sign a new deal at midnight on July 1st? Why shouldn't Mats let the offers roll in? Why shouldn't Mats take time to consider the decision that will impact his entire life for the next 12-24 months?

Look, Mats Sundin knows that by taking his sweet time, he'll lose some potential offers, as well as gain new ones. It's called risk/reward. Mats has enough leverage and money in the bank not to need to make a hasty decision.

Mats owes neither the league nor any GM anything other than what he's paid to do: play hockey.

(Read the comments at the bottom of the article. It's funny to see readers take Kelley to task for his stupidity)

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I find it a little drawn out, but realistically, Sundin isn't under contract, and therefore answers only to Mats Sundin. It's the media that are turning this into a daily non-news item, and that's what has some people upset at Mats' inability to make a decision. Sure, some GMs who didn't plan right might be pissed off too, but they should look in the mirror before getting too upset...
Yeah, more of a GM problem than Sundin's problem. I just hope Gillies has something else planned instead of waiting around with $20m on the hook. Demitra would make Jes drool with delight.
Jim Kelley always has been - and always will be - irrelevant. In the few times I've watched ol' Bob Sunglasses on the Fan 590 on Sportsnet, the thing that annoyed me most was not a radio host wearing sunglasses, it was Jim Kelley.

I can't count the amount of times he's interjected saying something to which a caller or panelist would say "No, that's not true." and Kelley would say "Oh, oh, I thought it was."
I'd wear a disguise too if I had to talk about Toronto all day long every day...
I like how he claims that Brian Rolston might have "gotten a better deal... that he WANTED to accept". It was reported Rolston fielded 17 offers before accepted a great deal of money to play where his career started (and where his wife is from).
All of a sudden, "mediots" (good word!) don't want to give the players the right to choose where they want to play, no matter how many years they've toiled in futility, and regardless of the rights they won in negotiating their CBA.
It's the same with Hossa, with the added-bitterness of him daring to spurn "Canada's Darling," Crosby, and go with the Euro-dominated Wings. The nerve!
Some angry "fans" are rooting for Hossa to suffer a career-ending injury, this coming season. How's that, for wacky-doodleness?
Another brutha (for me, that's ghetto-slang for Czechoslovak - ya know, before the big split in 1993?) getting dragged through the mud... Hossa gets to pick, it's his between-contractual-right. Let him go where he feels is best, and the story is finished. Pissburgh and the rest of the nay-sayers should just lay off the dude until next summer, because he'll likely be available again, regardless of the outcome this season.

I wish him well in MoTown. 100+ points for sure.
Jim Kelley is a know-nothing toolbox. I mean, really: this is a guy who bashed Raleigh left right and centre--without having ever been there--and then went on our pathetic excuse for an AM sports-talk station to defend himself by saying that he was just going on what he saw...three years before in GREENSBORO, a town 45 minutes west of the Triangle (and that, I might add, is nothing at all like or even close to Raleigh).

He's just an idiot.
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