Whenever Chris Kelly appeared on the television screen, I would hastily inform everyone trapped in the room with me that I once had breakfast with the former Ottawa Senator. That we did not share a table is beside the point. It was April 2007 and our television station had a team entered in the 7th Annual Canwest Cup hockey tournament. I had driven from Montreal to Ottawa on the Friday of the tournament weekend, to play a 9:15 game that night. The next morning, I found a popular breakfast place down the road from the hotel and sat down to eat my meal.
As my eyes scanned the restaurant, I noticed Chris Kelly sitting a couple of tables over. We actually stood at the cash together waiting to pay our bills. I said nothing to him and there was not a peep uttered by him to me. Evidently, the breakfast we'd shared had been enough.
Susan and Tristan took the bus to Ottawa on Saturday and thanks to the kindness of Mike, our team manager, we had our own incredible room at the posh Brookstreet Hotel. The Pens were staying there too and, at one point during our stay, I was forced to stomach an elevator ride with Gary Roberts.
Later in the tournament, company staff were treated to box seats at the Senators-Penguins playoff game.
Again, Mike ever so kindly arranged that Tristan and I could go together. It was awesome! Even more thrilling, were my responsibilities as centre on the PAD line; Peplowski-Armstrong-Dagenais. I say with great humility that, alas, I'm not here to discuss our astounding exploits as hockey players, or the grand achievements of our team in that year's tournament. I only mention my memory of this terrific weekend because today's Kovalev trade made me think of other notable Senators who've just been traded away.
Kelly's a Bruin and Mike Fisher is a Predator. Over the last couple of seasons, no one's on-ice performance has ticked me off more than Alex Kovalazy. He was sent to Pittsburgh today for a conditional 7th round draft pick and, as far as I'm concerned, the Penguins have been royally ripped-off because he's not even worth that much!
He's a multi-million dollar snail.
When Paul called out the trade in the office today, the two resident Senators fans burst into tears of relief and hope. I'm fairly certain colleagues could hear our sniffles under the crinkled bags over our heads.
It may be Kovalazy's 38th birthday, but it's Sens fans who are celebrating! I compare it to that moment in the "Wizard of Oz" when Dorothy's house lands on the Wicked Witch of the East! The terrible burden lifted, the Munchkins rejoice! Like the Munchkins, Sens fans are prancing and dancing, not necessarily in that order, with joy! The only Sens fans who are not rejoicing at Kovalazy's departure are the ones who are as blind as bats and couldn't see his apalling lack of effort for what it was.
Granted, off the ice, he does some pretty wonderful things in the community. On the ice, he's good for nothing. This season, he's managed 14 goals in 53 games at $5 million a year. Please, give someone else a chance!
Whee! Kovalzy is gone; nice landing, Dorothy!