You know the old saying, I’m not looking for trouble but trouble always seems to find me?
The NHL is in the midst of trying to eliminate dangerous hits from the game. Sean Avery claims to have been blindsided with words that apparently hit harder than a flying elbow.
Any Surprise Sean Avery is in the middle of yet another controversy? The latest accuses Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds of directing a homophobic slur at the Rangers agitator.
I would never condone any offensive slur being thrown at another individual. It’s politically correct to say there’s no place in the game for these types of actions and generally speaking I agree. But trash talking and getting under the skin of your opponent has been part of professional sports since day one. Have you ever sat courtside of an NBA game? You may be surprised what comes out of the mouths of some of these guys.
The same can be said during an NHL game only you rarely hear about it. That’s because NHL players almost never bring it up to the media. What’s said on the ice usually stays there, unless you’re Sean Avery. Then it becomes important for the entire world to know.
This is the same Avery by the way that leads the league in offensive words. From mocking former Head Coach Andy Murray who suffers from a shaking condition stemming from a serious car accident, to allegedly making fun of Kings Captain Dustin Brown’s speech impediment, to also “allegedly” making fun of Jason Blake for having cancer. Some might find it hard to believe Avery all of a sudden has thin skin.
This guy has repeatedly crossed the line with countless NHL players since he entered the league. Some are starting to come forward including Scott Hartnell who says Avery once made improper comments relating to his divorce.
Again, I’m not condoning what Simmonds did as two wrongs don’t make a right. But Avery’s history and reputation will prevent him from getting a lot of sympathy here. You can’t go around offending people and then get all worked up when it happens to you.
Again I’m not defending Simmonds but I’m not about to place judgment on the Philadelphia player either. Words are said during the course of a battle and most people fully understand they're often used figuratively not literally.
Simmonds by the way is the same player who had a banana thrown at him on the ice last week in London, Ontario.
By no means am I a member of the Avery haters club. He’s obviously one of the most disliked players in the NHL but I definitely don’t hate the guy. I’m not a huge fan of him either as I think his career will be more defined by these situations as opposed to being a guy who’s a decent hockey player when he wants to be.
The NHL has decided they will not be suspending Simmonds but he did have a meeting with NHL Sr. Vice-President of Hockey Operations Colin Campbell.
The regular season couldn’t start fast enough…uncle already.
*Programming Note* I’ll be hosting my NHL/Blues preview show this Wednesday at 6:00 pm on am 590 the Fan.
More to come,
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