FRIDAY: MIXED BAG

Jason Gregor
July 27 2012 11:16AM

The biggest sporting event in the world starts today. Whether you are a fan of the Olympics or not, the fact is for the next 16 days London will host the most athletes in one place for four years. I love the Olympics, because they evoke so many emotions. Athletes train four years to get to this point and in many events, one minor slip up can cost them their dream. It is gutwrenching and exhilarating all at the same time.

The best part is that there is still a lot of hockey and football to chat about while the Olympics are on.

Former Oiler Lubomir Visnvosky has filed an appeal to veto his trade to the New York Islanders, stating he had a NMC clause. I asked NHL agent Kevin Epp (not Visnovsky's representative) about No Movement Clauses.

JG: When a player signs a contract that includes a NMC does, that NMC become null and void once he arrives at a new team?

KE: No. it stays with the term of the contract. I'm sure you are asking because of the Visnovsky situation. Typically it stays in the contract, and I guess that is what is up for debate in that scenario.

JG: The NMC is part of his contract just like the money. Is there anywhere in any contract that you've signed/overseen that stipulates once a player waives his NMC then the team that is acquiring him has the option to uphold it?

KE: That is not in there; it doesn't say that or stipulate that at all. I don't know what the circumstances are, I don't know if he had a complete NMC/NTC clause, or if he had a limited trade. Sometimes there is a deadline or date when you have to put in a list of teams that you would or wouldn't go to. Lots of times there are cases where players either forget to do it, don't do it or it doesn't happen in a timely manner. I haven't read over his exact contract, but I think if he had a complete NMC/NTC I'm sure he'd have a strong case."

After chatting with Epp I made some phone calls and was able to discover that Visnovsky had a complete NMC for the first four years of his contract, but he had a limited NMC/NTC clause for this year.

It stipulated that as of May 15th, 2012 his club (Ducks) could request (in writing) that he provide them with a list of at least ten teams (he could list more) that he would be willing to go to. He would then have 14 days after receiving the written request, to submit his list to the Ducks. If he does not submit his list within the 14 days after receiving the written consent of the club, they are free to trade him to any NHL team.

I'm guessing that is what will be argued. If the Ducks sent him their request and he didn't reply in the proper 14-day window, then the contract states they are free to trade him to any NHL team. It doesn't sound like a NMC become void after a player gets traded. I spoke to two other agents today and they both said they've never seen one that had a void/opt out aspect of a NMC, other than the limited NTC.

QUICK HITS

  • If you plan on watching the Olympics on tape delay, and don't want to know the results beforehand, I'd recommend staying off twitter during the day.
     
  • Chris Vande Velde and Alex Plante signed one-year, two-way deals yesterday. Both are depth signings. Plante took some strides last year, but his biggest hurdle will be fending off the younger defenders coming up. Martin Marincin, David Musil, Martin Gernat and Oskar Klefbom could push him farther down the depth chart. Vande Velde could be the heir apparent to Eric Belanger, as a 4th line centre. He needs to improve his footspeed, but he's solid in the draws and on the PK. If Belanger has a bounce back year, I could see the Oilers moving him next year and replacing him with a cheaper Vande Velde. Of course Anton Lander will have a say in Vande Velde's icetime, but I see Lander as a #3, who might develop into a #2.
     
  • Nice gamble by Jim Rutherford in signing Alex Semin. Seven million is a lot of money, but they aren't a cap team and it's only a one-year deal. Semin is one of the most naturally skilled players in the league, and while his consistency and work ethic are a concern, I think he's worth the risk for a year. Kirk Muller has an infectious personality, and I bet he'll find a way to keep Semin interested. If he stays healthy, I see him bouncing back with 35 goals. The Canes have four solid offensive players in Skinner, Semin and the Staals. I'm sure their marketing campaign will revolve around the letter S...
     
  • I can't wait to see how the Wings will do without Nick Lidstrom and Brad Stuart. The Wings have struck out in free agency and trades thus far. Their blueline is average at best right now.
     
  • Steven Jyles' fumble didn't cost the Esks the game last night, their inability to put up points in the first half did. The Esks D and special teams continually gave them great field position, but they couldn't capitalize. Injuries are never an excuse, but last night the O-line didn't look great missing three starters. The Esks D is great, but their offence is still a question mark.
     
  • I wonder if Tim Thomas is eyeing a political career after hockey. He's made his views on some hot topics very clear, however, because he has different views on marriage than some doesn't make him an idiot. Too often we resort to name calling when someone disagrees with our stance on something, and while I don't view marriage as only man and woman, I also can understand why some feel that way. Actual conversations about it would be much more beneficial than name calling, but it sadly that seems highly unlikely.  The interesting thing is why so many seem to think his opinion on marriage means more than anyone else's. It doesn't. Nor does mine.
     
  • Memo to Ryan Tannehill: Get your ass to training camp. You've only played 1 1/2 years of QB in college and you need the reps if you think you'll actually be a successful NFL quarterback. Every day you hold out decreases your chances of beating out Matt Moore as the Dolphins QB. Wake up.
     
  • Interesting how an attitude or persona can change how people are viewed. Many feel Steve Tambellini has done a below average job, yet in Toronto many feel Brian Burke is doing an okay job. Burke was hired November 29th, 2008. He's been in Toronto for 3 1/2 years and they've never made the playoffs. Only two players, Nikolai Kulemin and Mikhail Grabovski, have longer stays in Toronto than Burke. Burke has re-built his entire team, but unless he acquires a goalie, they don't look like they will improve.

    Tambellini was hired July 31st, 2008 and the Oilers have finished 22nd, 30th, 30th and 29th under his watch. Sam Gagner, Shawn Horcoff, Ales Hemsky, Ladislav Smid and Theo Peckham are the only players remaining since he arrived. Even though it never started until January of 2010, the Oilers finally have a plan, but I'm not sure what the Leafs plan is. They don't keep their top-ten picks, but they also don't want to finish 8th "And get blown out in the first round."

    I'm guessing Burke gets more rope because he won a Cup in Anaheim, but his tenure in Toronto has been anything but successful.
     
  • I love the 30 for 30 series. Up until Wednesday my favourites included: "Kings Ransom," "The Two Escobars," "Once Brothers,", "June 17th, 1994,' "The Birth of Big Air," and "Into the Wind" the Terry Fox story, but now I have to add "Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. The New York Knicks" to my list. I highly recommend it.  Great story lines and shows how intense the Pacers/Knicks rivalry was.

    Many have told me that "The U" is a must see as well, and I'm looking forward to it. These types of documentaries are a must-see if you are a sports fan. I love them.
     
  • Good article by Kevin Anderson on Claude Giroux. Great quote from Giroux when asked about the scars on his wrists.

    “Those are from (Sidney) Crosby,” he says half smiling, but with some tension in his voice. “Every time we'd line up against each other for a face-off during our (2012 playoff) series, instead of going for the puck when it was dropped, he'd hack me across the wrists. I ended up playing the series against (New) Jersey with one of them fractured and had to go for surgery on both of them after we were out of the playoffs.”
     
  •  All 18 players who filed for arbitration or had their team take them have settled before seeing an arbitrator. The NHL thrives on deadlines. I know it is unlikely, but the NHLPA and NHL should have a deadline for a new CBA. If they didn't agree to a deal before September 5th, then they would present their case to an arbitrator and let him/her decide.

    We'd never have a lockout/strike and the fans would never get short-changed. I know it's a pipedream, but having a deadline in place would force them to start negotiating earlier and get a deal done. The NHL culture thrives on deadlines so why not put one in place for CBA talks?
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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#1 jamesemmy
July 27 2012, 11:24AM
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Go Canada Go!!!

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#2 John Chambers
July 27 2012, 11:37AM
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Jason,

Having a deadline to decide the new CBA would hand over an undue amount of leverage to the players union. With regard to shortening the season, this tactic overwhelmingly benefits the owners. They can stand to miss an entire season or a fragment thereof and have it not translate into diminished brand value or much foregone revenue, but for some players it can represent a significant percentage (in some cases over 20%) of their lifetime career income.

The players will ultimately have to accept a deal they won't be entirely happy with. The NHL has done a great job of monetizing the business, and the players don't have much of a claim to that revenue. The players stand far more to lose with a lockout, and it's my guess they'll acquiesce to a deal that provides them 50-52% of hockey-related revenue.

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#3 Jesse
July 27 2012, 11:58AM
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@Jason Gregor -

"I wonder if Tim Thomas is eyeing a political career after hockey. He's made his views on some hot topics very clear, however, because he has different views on marriage than some doesn't make him an idiot. Too often we resort to name calling when someone disagrees with our stance on something, and while I don't view marriage as only man and woman, I also can understand why some feel that way. Actual conversations about it would be much more beneficial than name calling, but it sadly that seems highly unlikely.  The interesting thing is why so many seem to think his opinion on marriage means more than anyone else's. It doesn't. Nor does mine."

Very well said Jason.  

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#4 Gino Odjick
July 27 2012, 12:10PM
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"The U" is by far the best 30-for-30 doc, it's a must see. And have you seen Ryan Tannehill's wife? I'd stay at home too.

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#5 Mark-LW
July 27 2012, 12:10PM
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That's some weak s#!t by Crosby.

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This is the key and really that agent should've known this. The problem is whether or not Edmonton continued to keep the NTC/NMC or some sort of one.

11.8(a) The SPC of any player who is a Group 3 Unrestricted Free Agent under Article 10.1(a) may contain a no-Trade or a no-move clause. SPCs containing a no-Trade or a no-move clause may be entered into prior to the time that the Player is a Group 3 Unrestricted Free Agent so long as the SPC containing the no-Trade or no-move clause extends through and does not become effective until the time that the player qualifies for Group 3 Unrestricted Free Agency. If the player is traded or claimed on Waivers prior to the no-Trade or no-move clause taking effect, the clause does not bind the acquiring Club. An acquiring Club may agree to continue to be bound by the no-Trade or no-move clause, which agreement shall be evidenced in writing to the Player, Central Registry and the NHLPA, in accordance with Exhibit 3 hereof.

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#7 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
July 27 2012, 12:25PM
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Love that Crosby did that to Giroux, most of us fans don't even realise that it really is a a war out there on the ice.

Kill or be killed. That Crosby kid's going to be just fine. The fact that he's willing to do whatever it takes to beat down his opponent, has alot to do with him being in the finals a couple times already.

The things you have to do to be labelled a winner nowadays....

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Maybe if he would've spent more time trying to win the draws instead of slashing Giroux the Pens wouldn't have got their arses handed to them.

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#9 what he said
July 27 2012, 12:47PM
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^^

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#10 vince
July 27 2012, 12:53PM
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Gregor, I feel the exact opposite about the years of training washed away by one litte mistake. Ten guys run a race 1st place and last place finished within 1 second of each other...nothing interesting about that at all.

On a similar note I get annoyed when my friends who can't name more then one player in the NHL, NBA, MLB, or NFL get absolutely captivated by the friggin' olympics and the world cup like they're sports fans.

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#11 Digger
July 27 2012, 01:00PM
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OK, I'm pretending my Mom is reading over my shoulder, but here goes:

I agree Jason. T. Thomas' opinion re: marriage shouldn't mean more than your opinion (or mine for that matter). The fact is - it does.

MSM and the "lesser types" have created "opinion leaders" of major league athletes. Our heros are placed on pedestals and are not discouraged by the media to share their sporting and even personal world views.

Generally speaking, I think it's safe to say that a person's accomplishments in life means his or her opinions carry greater weight - regardless of the topic. T. Thomas has earned a SC - and in the hockey world that gives him a larger listening audience. Doesn't mean his/her opinion is right, but it doesn't mean it's wrong either. But, we likely listen because . . . hey, this guy won a Cup!

I do find it somewhat interesting that the media provides the forum for this sort of free discussion, then (hypocritically) stands back and wonders why athletes have so much influence.

Just sayin' . . .

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#12 michael
July 27 2012, 01:08PM
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Jason is realignment on the table during the current CBA or is that a seperate issue to be discussed. Also whats the update on the Pheonix situation/dramadey.

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#13 vince
July 27 2012, 01:14PM
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Being against gay marriage makes you a bigot, period. Citing religion doesn't excuse it any more than it excused slavery in the 19th century.

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#14 Reality Check to the head
July 27 2012, 01:16PM
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Once Brothers was one of the best Documentaries I have even seen. I too am interested in watching Detroit this year. They have been sitting at the top of the heap for as long as I can remember (not really, but pretty close). They seem to be a classy organization but I think Detriot goes to the middle of the pack.

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#15 Dman09
July 27 2012, 01:19PM
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Jason,

The biggest problem with the ESKs is the fact that Jyles should be a backup not a starter. Its not all his fault but his accuracy throwing further than 25 yards is bad. There were a bunch of plays where the recievers were wide open and in position and he just didn't put the ball in the right place. The defence has been outstanding this season and I think between the special teams and the defense they account for like 30% of the offense so far this season,maybe mroe.

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#16 LoDog
July 27 2012, 01:24PM
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@Ogden

Nice catch. I was about to start searching for info on that clause as I remembered that Visnovsky was traded before the NMC kicked in. Thanks for posting it.

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#17 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
July 27 2012, 01:31PM
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@ OBjr

Giroux was handed his said ass against the lacklustre Devils in the next round. Why go on about things that don't matter.

Messier did alot of things that he wasn't proud of. Instilling fear in your opponent puts alot of players in the Hall of Fame.

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#19 baggedmilk
July 27 2012, 01:58PM
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Which day does the hockey start?

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#20 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
July 27 2012, 02:25PM
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@ vince:

That's exactly what makes things so exciting. The least exciting part about international hockey is the 'filler' games that feature a hockey powerhouse beating on some unfortunate team full of ham-n-eggers that just happen to be that country's finest. 15-0 Canada over France is a snorefest. 2-1 Canada over Russia is what keeps you up late, pulls you out of your seat, and has you talking at work for several days afterwards. It's the idea that your team could potentially lose that keeps you glued to your TV, and the feeling of relief makes the victory that much more exciting.

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#21 Archaeologuy
July 27 2012, 02:27PM
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Disagree on Thomas. Sometimes what you think/say/do really does mean you are an idiot. We live in a place where everyone has a right to say or think what they want, but that doesnt mean all ideas are created equal. Some things really are idiotic.

Right now, Tim Thomas is doing his best qualify as an idiot

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#22 D
July 27 2012, 02:32PM
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Jason,

To echo the comments of John Chambers, binding arbitration works when two parties of equal strength face off against each other. The owners would not agree to binding arbitration for the new CBA because they are simply too powerful compared to the players. So the owners can afford to go for the win, even if it means losing part or all of the season.

Today's owners are a different breed from those of yester-year. For example, Peter Pocklington and Nelson Skalbania are small peas compared to Phil Anschutz and Darryl Katz. That's why the players in the 1990s had more labour dispute success than in 2005. I don't think it will be much different this time around.

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#23 AutoOiler
July 27 2012, 02:38PM
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Mark-LW wrote:

That's some weak s#!t by Crosby.

That's why Crosby has a cup and a gold medal. He does what it takes to win. I never saw a single penalty called off of a face off. That was one great series.

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#24 EHH Team
July 27 2012, 02:38PM
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Tim Thomas has an arsenal of opinions that support tagging him as an idiot. Lots of luck getting elected.

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#25 2004Z06
July 27 2012, 03:33PM
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Oh no, not Crosby! He's such a little angel. The bloom is off that rose.

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#26 Smokey
July 27 2012, 03:34PM
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I don't think Tim Thomas has any chance at a career in politics. He's a lightning rod. His views on gay marriage is of no concern to me, but hes becoming a polarizing figure.

Im curious as to whether any team touches him with a ten foot pole. Such a shame for a guy who was the worlds best goalie what a year ago.

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#27 steveb12344
July 27 2012, 04:04PM
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Love those 30/30's too. Another really good one was "pony excess".

I'm not sure if it was 30/30, but "catching hell" The Bartman story was another must-see as well

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#28 AW
July 27 2012, 06:35PM
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You mention Tambi had a plan . What is it ???

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#29 Zamboni Driver
July 27 2012, 07:26PM
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I am thinking "Vince" is someone who is seeing an issue the next 2 1/2 weeks that maybe people will not be talking about whether or not Eric Belanger (whoever that is) will get better or the Oilers will find another depth d-man (hopefully that shoots right).

Personally, I don't know how I'll cope.

P.S. Can we bring back......

let's say....

Eric Brewer.

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#30 Oilcruzer
July 27 2012, 08:07PM
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OMG

Thomas being man enuf to avoid political correctness makes him a bigot? Really? How does that jump become factual?

Polarizing? Yes.

I wish more would man up about what they find acceptable and express their value set.

You accept gay marriage? Fine. You don't accept it? Fine.

Conformity and anonymity is for the weak.

(and no, I ain't anonymous if you know how to research)

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#31 Oilcruzer
July 27 2012, 08:09PM
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Back to hockey. Would you rather Semin one for $7M or 3 for $16M

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#32 Oilcruzer
July 27 2012, 08:10PM
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AW wrote:

You mention Tambi had a plan . What is it ???

Apparently to get under your skin.

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#33 Sam
July 27 2012, 10:11PM
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Funny how the same posters who can't understand how someone else could have a different opinion on marriage and call those opinions idiotic are the same posters who stubbornly defend Gagner as a quality second line center. Thanks for confirming that this view is based on ignoring all dissenting information.

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#34 DieHard
July 27 2012, 10:49PM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

Disagree on Thomas. Sometimes what you think/say/do really does mean you are an idiot. We live in a place where everyone has a right to say or think what they want, but that doesnt mean all ideas are created equal. Some things really are idiotic.

Right now, Tim Thomas is doing his best qualify as an idiot

Sorry. That puts you in the exact same place bud.

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#35 Reg Dunlop
July 27 2012, 11:56PM
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One issue at a time. The opening ceremonies for the Olympics, great to see Macca. However, suspicions were confirmed that he died in a car crash and was replaced by a look-alike from Klaatu 'I buried Paul'.

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#36 Not Vince
July 28 2012, 12:16AM
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Vince,

According to our Canadian Charter of rights a man can marry his horse if he wants to if I'm against it does that still make me a bigot?

At least he stands for something. It is sad when people are so politically correct that they don't stand for something and they usually fall for anything.

I don't agree with your view and you don't agree with mine but that's the beauty of living in a FREE country. He is expressing his view.

Proponents of gay marriage think their view is the latest expression of enlightened humanitarianism. That means people who believe in the sanctity of traditional marriage may soon wind up on the wrong side of "enlightened" bigotry. Is that what you mean when you say he or anyone who disagrees with you is a bigot?

When does trainig Camp start?

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#37 David S
July 28 2012, 12:28AM
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Oilcruzer wrote:

OMG

Thomas being man enuf to avoid political correctness makes him a bigot? Really? How does that jump become factual?

Polarizing? Yes.

I wish more would man up about what they find acceptable and express their value set.

You accept gay marriage? Fine. You don't accept it? Fine.

Conformity and anonymity is for the weak.

(and no, I ain't anonymous if you know how to research)

^ THIS.

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#38 Reg Dunlop
July 28 2012, 12:37AM
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I give up.

Tim Thomas has done nothing to harm any future political aspirations. In a country where the Christian right, the moral majority and the flat earth society still hold sway, homosexual rights are a lower priority than keeping Pete Rose out of the Hall of Fame. USofA, love it or leave it.

Steven Jyles is a bad QB. As bad as Corey Colehour. Anyone remember the 'washroom' by the knothole gang at Clark Stadium? Peeing against a brick wall while some kid put gum in your hair was so cool.

Does anyone miss the days of Soviet bloc eugenics and doping programs? Olympic dominance and chromosome tests for all. I would like to see an anything goes Olympics where post-ops with beards inject benzedrine in their necks while in the starting blockson their way to a 9.5 second womens 200m event and a stroke at the finish line.

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#39 Quinn the Eskimo
July 28 2012, 12:42AM
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The Nation sounds bored.

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#40 Reg Dunlop
July 28 2012, 01:01AM
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I have a lot to say tonite. Detroit Red Wings are overdue to filter to the bottom of the standings. The loss of Lidstrom is the start and payback will be sweet. Watch for the oil to sweep the dead things this year.

30 for 30 is an awesome doc series. My favorite is 'The best that never was'. Marcus Dupree was a beast and Barry Switzer was a control freak and a fool.

Clod Giroux is a pussy if he can't take a few taps from Sid. Bobby Clarke must be ashamed.

Finally, what ever became of the Olymbics? That diver chick that flicked her bic was smokin. That is all.

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#41 Reg Dunlop
July 28 2012, 01:12AM
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What a spectacular Olympic opening. The lighting of the cauldron was supposed to be accomplished by having soccer great George Best breathe on the flame but organizers were worried about a second great fire of London.

Go oil and good night sports fans. I need to sober up.

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#42 The Soup Fascist
July 28 2012, 07:57AM
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Sam wrote:

Funny how the same posters who can't understand how someone else could have a different opinion on marriage and call those opinions idiotic are the same posters who stubbornly defend Gagner as a quality second line center. Thanks for confirming that this view is based on ignoring all dissenting information.

This is either the most ignorant or brilliantly ironic post ever. Chastising people for not coming up with original objective thougts mere seconds after tying two random groups together with no basis.

Hmm .... I think I am going to choose door #1, Monty.

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#43 Pajamah
July 28 2012, 09:38AM
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The same way I don't want to hear conservative hate-mongering (gay marriage/abortion/gun-control etc. is the devil)

Is the same way I don't want to hear liberal agendas shoved down my throat (PETA, Greenpeace, Slutwalk etc.)

Frankly, I'm an open-minded person and will come to my own conclusions. Tim Thomas opinion doesn't fit or represent my opinion, and he's entitled to have it, he should just keep his mouth shut and realize his vocalizing said opinion is only going to polarize the general public.

There's a term used for people who "tell it like it is"

They're called obnoxious as$holes

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#44 GiftedGregerius
July 28 2012, 10:34AM
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I love the Olympics!

In fact I love it so much I would go as far as saying that the athletes involved should be the true role models in children's lives (and perhaps not professional athletes who spread ignorance, or celebrities who's only claim to fame is that unfortunate video that happened to get on the Internet).

These true role models have spent their entire lives working towards goals they have set for themselves, and this is the message we should be spreading. "it is not about the car you drive or the size of your bank account, but the drive and size of your heart."

Say what you will about the Olympics, but at least they have standards of behavior for their competitors (if you doubt it check out Greece's triple jumper), keep your opinions to yourself Thomas!

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#45 Renato Pagnani
July 28 2012, 01:58PM
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If you really are claiming any similarity between a person wanting to marry a horse and a person wanting to marry another man, you have already lost any logical footing. A horse is not a sentient being that can CHOOSE to marry a person. What a stupid comparison.

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#46 JohnQPublic
July 30 2012, 12:04AM
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ESPN's 30 in 30 is some of the best TV (and I'm not talking sports TV only) that I've seen in years.

If they are smart, ESPN will continue the series.

p.s. - The Marcus Dupre and the Ricky Williams episodes were fascinating. Has there been a poor episode in the series? I've yet to see a poor one.

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