Sunday, March 14, 2004

Passion, Hockey, and Gates

Finally saw The Passion on Friday night with friends. Review can be found here.

Sanderson and Rucinsky are looking like great pick-ups by Burke so far. :) Sign this man now! But if the ownership isn't willing to bring Burke back, I'd be more than happy to have Tamby as GM. The man deserves a chance. Nonis wouldn't be bad either, but I'd rather see what one of Canada's national team architects can do with the Canucks.

Regarding Bertuzzi's hit. It was ugly. It was nasty. He deserves his suspension. There's no way to justify a sucker punch from behind, no matter what Moore did to Nazzy. Whether or not the league takes action against anything, Bertuzzi does not have the authority to take the law into his own hands. Neither does any other player in the NHL. Now, enforcers have their role, but it's not to arbitrarily take the law into their own hands and arbitrarily decide what to do; they have boundaries. Bertuzzi crossed the boundary, though he never would have expected the consequences that happened to happen. I think there are several issues that people have been unable to understand here.

1. The action should be analyzed separately from the consequent. Otherwise, penalties will vary according to the degree of the damage done to the victim. I would argue that this can in fact maintain or even increase the level of violence. Suppose that Player A commits a dangerous infraction against Player B but Player B survives with only a minor scratch. Then Player A gets only a minor punishment because Player B didn't suffer any extensive injury. This can create a lottery-type mentality (perhaps it'd better be called anti-lottery). Just like people look at a lottery-winners and say, "That could have been me!" and then use this thought process to justify their continued purchase of lottery tickets, players can look at minor injuries and say, "The chances for serious injury/punishment are so low! It almost never happens!" Bertuzzi never thought Moore would end up having 2 fractured vertebrae and a concussion either. When you have things like Martin Havlat high-sticking and getting only two games because Recchi wasn't seriously injured, how does that send the message that high-sticking is a bad thing? And then the next time they play, they break the record for most penalty minutes in a game. @@ The NHL seriously needs to punish based on the action, not the injury. Otherwise, they condone dangerous action.

2. Bertuzzi is sorry about what he did. Everyone who says that he isn't really doesn't know how to empathize. Bertuzzi's always been a brash man. He is no longer that brash man. He's a broken shell right now. It shows in how he deals with the media (or lack thereof), his public apology, and his desire to talk with Moore personally.

3. Let's not forget that Granato is guilty of a similar nasty incident himself. Put it in perspective. Bertuzzi is not an isolated incident. It's only high-profile because of Moore's cracked vertebrae. If anything, Bertuzzi's more like a scapegoat for a big pile-up of nasty incidents, it would seem to me.

On the note of nasty things, what about the price of Microsoft's operating system? I can't count how many people have told me that if Microsoft made their software cheaper, they wouldn't pirate it. Well, kudos to Microsoft for cutting prices in Southeast Asia. This will make computers cheaper for customers to buy, but you just know that it'll increase their market share too over open source alternatives. ;) Consider that home users would use Windows anyway though, and it really is as humanitarian move as Microsoft has made in recent memory (on a corporate basis). However, why on earth are they offering US government employees software for free? Chee...

On the other hand, the SCO lawsuit has taken an interesting (though perhaps not unexpected for the conspiracy theorists) turn. Interesting turn 2.

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