The dog days… is this thing on?

They call it the dog days of summer, and outside of the NHLPA worrying that they won’t be able to receive ridiculous 12 year contracts anymore, there isn’t a lot going in the hockey world. However, last night I was reminded why I love hockey more than most sports.

Last night the Cincinnati Reds and St. Louis Cardinals had what many American sports writers and analysts call a brawl (see above)

That is not a brawl my American friends, not even close. It started because prior to the game Reds second baseman, Brandon Phillips, said this prior to the game.

“I hate the Cardinals. All they do is bitch and moan about everything, all of them; they’re little bitches, all of ’em. I really hate the Cardinals. Compared to the Cardinals, I love the Chicago Cubs. Let me make this clear – I hate the Cardinals.”

When he came up for his first at bat, Cards catcher, Yadier Molina didn’t like that Phillips tapped him on the shins, –a ritual Phillips usually does—and told Phillips to screw off. And so it went. But, how can anyone call that a sports brawl.

Watch at the 1:20  mark of the video and you’ll see Reds’ pitcher Johnny Cueto repeatedly kicking Chris Carpenter in the back. Yes, in the back. He is kicking him like his is peddling a recumbent bicycle. It is embarrassing. Cueto should be suspended for being the biatch. That was embarrassing.

I’m not one who condones meaningless fights, and rarely will I stand around and watch a street fight, but when I constantly hear people complain about violence in hockey I shake my head.

Watching ESPN and TSN last night, the announcers made it out like this was full on brawl. It wasn’t close.

Here is a brawl, and a great one at that: 

Fans would much rather see that than the pathetic display put on by the Cards and Reds last night.

Does this happen in hockey all the time? No. In fact it rarely happens anymore, and that is fine, but when it does the guys are men enough to go toe-to-toe. And they don’t kick a guy in the back, and they surely don’t all mill around talking and doing nothing; which is normally what happens in baseball.

If I hear another announcer rip hockey for being too violent I will puke. The game is tough and rugged, and it is played at an incredibly high pace, but when was the last time we actually saw a full-fledged bench brawl in hockey?

I’d rather watch two guys drop the gloves, square off and go toe-to-toe than watch a bunch of guys run out of the dugout, hug one another and even kick an opponent, especially when most of the time the benches empty over minor issues like a brush back pitch or a hard slide.

Kudos to listeners/reader…

J. Goertz sent me this link earlier today. I knew Brownlee’s following was growing all the time, but I had no idea he was becoming this popular in Sweden. Hopefully we never lose our freedom of speech on radio or in print… All hail Rueben the HERO. I love the subtle pics on the side of the bus.