Winnipeg Free Press



Dump & Chase

Flying solo

Where’s David Ayres when you need him?

Where’s David Ayres when you need him?

Howdy folks. Mike here, riding solo this week after being dumped by Chase (Jason) in favour of his extensive, end-to-end coverage of the Brier in Kingston.

I tried to find an emergency backup to fill the void, but Ayres is likely too busy appearing on late-night TV shows to take my call.

Fair enough. If the future need arises, I can always hit one of the local rinks here in town and find a Zamboni driver willing to lend a helping hand.

We’re getting down to crunch time in the NHL, with just over four weeks left on the regular-season calendar and plenty of teams — including your Winnipeg Jets — hoping to finish strong and get into the post-season.

It’s a marathon, not a sprint, but the finish line is now within sight.

There’s bound to be plenty more ups and downs, not to mention twists and turns, so fasten your seatbelts and enjoy the ride.

First period

Does John Tortorella strike you as the kind of guy who would go all-in for a selfie?

No, I didn’t think so, but that didn’t stop one fan from attempting to get a shot with the notoriously prickly "Torts" the other night.

There was just one problem: He was in the middle of coaching a game.

Needless to say, he wasn’t very impressed with the request. 

Face it: – we live in the age of technology, with our phones usually never more than an arm’s length away at any time.

But sometimes, that advanced technology can be humbling, as Johnny Boychuk of the New York Islanders discovered this week.

If you haven’t seen the ugly incident, Boychuk took a skate blade to the face in his game against the Montreal Canadiens and narrowly avoided disaster. He suffered a nasty cut to his face/eyelid which required dozens of stitches but didn’t cause any serious harm.

Later that night, the veteran defenceman wanted to get online to let fans know he was OK. But that turned out to be a lot more difficult than you’d think.


Who knew a massive scar across your grill can make your virtually unrecognizable to your own device?

The intermission segments at most rinks can be rather predictable and, quite frankly, boring, but the Buffalo Sabres may be on to something with a rather unique event held at a recent game.

They’ve combined the magic of jousting and tricycles, and the result is pretty much the spectacular disaster you’d expect.

Second period:

Kudos to the Los Angeles Kings for a master job in trolling on Thursday, ahead of their once-a-year home game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

It's safe to say they ripped off the band-aid on some old wounds with a trip down memory lane.

The replies are nearly as good as the initial Tweet, which will go down as a pretty "Great One" by the club’s social media staff.

Speaking of Ayres and his incredible story, have to give a shout-out to the second-best mascot in the NHL, Bailey, for his clever jab at the Leafs. (Gritty, of course, is our runaway favourite)

It was a very good week for several NHL teams when it comes to the use of Twitter.

Another highlight was the humorous back-and-forth between the Philadelphia Flyers and Washington Capitals, who are involved in a great battle for the Metropolitan lead.

The Flyers took a big step towards a divisional crowd Wednesday night with a victory over the Capitals, and they also scored a victory online, too.

Washington fired the first shot when they took exception to a highlight Tweeted out by the Philadelphia crew about a fight that had occurred within the game.

Which prompted a bit of a mic drop moment from the Flyers. 


Speaking of the Capitals, they rolled out new individual goal songs this week for every player, which is not only a terrific idea but something every team should be embracing.

Like an individual ring tone on your phone, or a walk-up song in baseball, this is a great way to add a little more character.

Unfortunately for the Capitals, they only got to play two songs in their 5-2 loss to the Flyers.

Eye of the Tiger kicked things off as Lars Eller opened the scoring, and What Is Love was played later in the game as Garnet Hathaway lit the lamp.

Kudos to Jonas Siegenthaler, Richard Panik and John Carlson for their especially clever selections.

Third period

The Ottawa Senators can’t seem to get out of their own way. It’s just one bizarre story after another when it comes to the hockey club under Eugene Melnyk, who is public enemy No. 1 among many fans in the nation’s capital.

They’ve become a bit of a punch-line, frankly, and they served up some new material this week when new CEO Jim Little was mysteriously fired, then released a statement suggesting what got him canned was a bit of foul language towards Melnyk.

Are you $&^#! kidding me?!

Imagine that, swearing in hockey. Anyways, the always funny Down Goes Brown naturally had some fun at the Senators expense.

To his credit, DGB is an equal-opportunity heckler. And the long-suffering Leafs fan isn’t afraid to poke some fun at his favourite team, tying it in with a prediction about the long-term future of this planet. 

Most of us have been there, feeling the pain of losing a fantasy hockey/football/baseball pool to a group of your peers. The taunting and ridiculing can follow you around for a while.

Miles Wood of the New Jersey Devils suffered a rather humiliating defeat for a second straight year, one which carried a particular caveat.

He had to wear this, uh, suit through his team’s entire swing through California earlier this week. 

Fortunately, nobody called the fashion police on him.


Imagine if we applied the traditional post-game hockey interview to the everyday realities of life.

One puck fan did just that recently, offering up his cliché-filled take on how a fourth date with his new girlfriend, specifically with meeting her parents.

From the hilarious questions to the absolutely perfect answers, this video is Hall of Fame quality. 

High-school hockey hair in Minnesota has become legendary, with teenage players flaunting their glorious lids every March as the state championships get underway. 

You can find various round-up videos online of the best (or worst) every year, including:

Well, this year’s festivities are just getting going and we may already have the runaway champion, not just for the terrific salad on his head, but the confidence in which he proudly shows it off.


Got a suggestion for a future edition of Dump & Chase? Let us know about it. and

And follow Dump & Chase on Twitter.

Mike is @mikemcintyrewpg, while Jason can be found @WFPJasonBell

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