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  • Writer's pictureLe Bo

Hockey Night in Canada Shows Don Cherry the Door

It’s about time.

After his anti-immigrant tirade last Saturday night, Don Cherry has been fired by Sportsnet, and will no longer host Coach’s Corner on Hockey Night in Canada.

Cherry seemed to target immigrants for not buying a poppy, while born-and-bred Canadians are more supportive of the troops.

"You people … that come here, whatever it is, you love our way of life, you love our milk and honey, at least you can pay a couple bucks for a poppy or something like that," Cherry said during a broadcast on Sportsnet Saturday night. "These guys paid for your way of life that you enjoy in Canada, these guys paid the biggest price."

Cherry has since faced backlash for targeting immigrants, which culminated in his ousting this afternoon.

I was watching when Cherry went on this rant. He is so incoherent and difficult to understand, that I didn’t realize he had said those discriminatory words until I read the backlash the next day. Cherry’s firing has been a long time coming. He is old and going senile. His regular incoherent rants exemplify this. Coach’s Corner has gone down the tubes over the past few years because Cherry has been unable to provide meaningful insight anymore. You simply cannot understand what he is saying. The only thing I am going to miss about Cherry is his collection of loud suits.

With Cherry having been told where he can stick his xenophobic views, it is time for Ron Maclean to step up on Coach’s Corner. MacLean has built up quite the image outside of Coach’s Corner. He is the anchor of Hometown Hockey, he is the anchor of Saturday Headlines, and is the ambassador for the Chevrolet Good Deeds Cup. MacLean is a philanthropist and a big advocate for minor hockey. It is out of character for him to sit down every first intermission and just smile and nod at whatever Don Cherry says. If Coach’s Corner were to continue, I would like to see MacLean take on a larger role in discussing the topics on the segment. He has a lot to contribute, and is an icon in the hockey world.

The question is, if Coach’s Corner were to continue, who would be MacLean’s new partner? There are quite a few worthwhile candidates. John Tortorella’s fiery manner would be a good fit, and he fits the title of the segment, but he is also American, which would not go over well with the more patriotic of hockey fans. As well, ‘Torts’ is currently still coaching, and is not likely to lose his job soon. Sportsnet may have to find somebody else for the time being. My pick, even if it is just temporary, is Brian Burke. Burke was recently a member of the Calgary Flames front office, and was a seasoned NHL general manager until 2012. He is familiar with the ins and outs of the game of hockey. Unlike Cherry, who hasn’t been involved with a team since the early 2000’s. As well, Burke is very opinionated, but is still sane and is much better at communicating his views than Cherry. Burke is part of the Sportsnet team, and would make a great immediate replacement from within. As soon as Cherry was fired, Burke’s name kept popping up as a possible replacement, and that is not without reason.

As this is a Canadiens website, I have to mention Les Boys at some point, right? On Saturday night, Shea Weber proved that he is still a big threat on the blue line. Two power-play goals and countless chances from the point that goaltender Jonathan Quick had to be sharp on. Ever since Weber shaved his beard, he has played like his younger, beardless self. I don’t know if this is a psychological issue, or whatever, but Weber has found his prime game. He has also found chemistry with Ben Chiarot, and the two have formed a great shutdown pairing. Things are looking up for the Canadiens’ defense, which is something I have not been able to say for a long time.

Next Canadiens game is tomorrow night against Columbus. A win coupled with a Maple Leafs loss would put the Canadiens in second place in the division.

Enjoy your retirement, Don Cherry.

Go Habs Go.

Signed, Le Bo

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