Monday, June 19, 2006

Linda & Ray vs. Joan & Mike

WARNING: Major curling discussion ahead... to my faithful readers who don't curl... I will have something a little better for you tomorrow! For the curlers.... read on!!

Last week (yes I know... late breaking news!) ... the CCA and TSN made their big annoucement that TSN would be the sole provider of Canada's curling coverage well into the next decade (2014). Hooo-ray...hooo-rah!

This deal seems like a good move for Canadian curling.... and as a curler, I like the fact that TSN isn't afraid to put curling coverage ahead of 'other' winter sports - and of course this excites me.

However, I will say that even though the CBC has been dumped when it comes to curling coverage, I do feel for Mike Harris and Joan McCusker. I really wish they were moving to TSN. Linda and Ray just don't turn my crank anymore when it comes to curling coverage (I was with them faithfully for about 10 years after they aired my Ask Linda, Vic & Ray question live on tv during their Brier coverage back in the day, but lately I am not feeling them!) ... they never want to get their mouths washed out with soap when it comes to commentating ...were as, on the other hand, Mike Harris has got to be by far the most intuitive commentator there is these days. Mikey isn't afraid to say what every competitive curler is thinking. When I am sitting a home thinking 'why the hell is he calling that shot' - Mikey Boy is saying 'this is a dumb call, I have no idea why he is playing this shot'. You gotta love that in a commentator. He and Joan argue over calls, make off-side comments all the time... I love it. But since CBC is out, so are Mikey and Joan!

Vic Rauter... well, you can't exactly hate him, he's got energy, he's got charisma, and he's got the know how when it comes the TSN Network, but seriously, after 20 years of commentating is it necessary to still ask those 'everyone at home may be wondering' questions?. I hate to break it to TSN, but chances are with the 3 draws a day that they air at the Briers and the Scotties (brutal name), the audience that you have captured are well-educated curlers.... its doubtful that Bobbi-Sue from B.F.N (butt.bleep.nowhere) is just tuning in for the first time because Mr. Dressup went off the air. Give the audience some credit... and if Linda and Ray are going to stick around, tell them to get a little sassy and god forbid get upset over bad calls, and bad strategy (if I have to hear Ray say one more time 'its their first time at the major event like this in an arena setting, they may be a little nervous with crowd... blah blah blah' or 'Colleen is looking firey out there today, she's still got it' - MAKE ME YHACK).

I think the part that gets me is the Linda and Ray are out of the so-called curling loop. Mikey and Joan play in the cash spiels, they are on the circut, and they are in-tune with what's going on in today's curling world. They don't need special media passes to get into the player's lounge... because they are players themselves. They don't have to work at it, they live it. Linda and Ray have the ancient knowledge no doubt, but what good is ancient knowledge of the game if you're not in the players loop. Please TSN, consider Mikey and Joan... if you can't do it for me, do it for the love of the game!

Today's rant is brought to you by Tim Horton's... I should gotta large instead of medium!!!

Those of you who are not curling fans probably didn't get this far, but if you are still with me, thanks for suffering through that!!

Tonight... Game 7 of the Cup... and my last date of the season with my back-up husband Kelly Hrudey... Go Oilers Go!