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Don Cherry goes After Clutterbuck

After giving Ms. Conduct her due honor of posting the first response in the Wild blogopshere, I now, will take up arms in the fight against the icon, Don Cherry. Buckle up, this may be a long ride.

According to multiple sources, most notibly Mr. Russo, the Wild were watching "Coach's Corner" before the game against the Oilers when Don Cherry came right out and called Cal Clutterbuck "Cal Buttercup" for fighting with his visor on. He, of course, showed the clip of Gretzky yelling at Clutterbuck from across the ice after C-buck fought Keith Yandle, telling him to "take of the visor, tough guy." Cherry then showed a clip of Clutts fighting Ian White, again with his visor on.

Oh... where to start?

We'll start with the Great One. The Great One was a great player. Key word here is was. He is no longer a player, his records are in the books, and they will forever be impressive. He is the greatest player the game has ever seen, and may ever see. Wayne Gretzky the coach is a whiny cry baby who is more prone to temper tantrums than any kind of greatness.

Replays show Clutterbuck asking Yandle to take off his helmet, and Cal even had his unsnapped. Yandle refused to remove his helmet, yet there was no call out of Yandle. As a matter of fact, here is the video so you can see for yourself:

Next, we take a look at the other fight Rush... I mean Don Cherry mentions. Clutterbuck says "The second time against White, he jumped me from behind. So what does he want from me? I mean, what do you want me to do? Really." Clutterbuck also mentions the fight against Steve Staios in Edmonton, in which both participants wore visors. There was no mention of that fight by Cherry, so here's the video:

Now, to defend Clutterbuck is easy. In relation to others, he does not fight that often. The fights he does have are generally spur of the moment, defend myself or my teammate style. They are not heavyweight bouts in which the participants have been versed in Sun Tsu and follow the Art of War. Not to mention the countless times we have seen the heavyweights refuse or simply forget to take their helmets off.

I want to now move on to the man, the myth, the legend that is Don Cherry. I go into this knowing full well that he is an icon in the hockey world, that he is something of a national hero in Canada, and to attack him is a slight against my northern neighbors. Thing is, I don't really care. We have Rush Limbaugh and Don Imus, they have Don Cherry.

In another show of the class the guy carries, Clutterbuck had this to say about Cherry, "He's a part of the Canadian media. He's based out of Toronto and he's in Leafs Nation, so with the whole thing with White, he's biased. I think what he does for the game in Canada, he's an icon, but I'm going to have to disagree with him on what he says." Taking the high road is what players are taught to do. I, on the other hand, sometimes enjoy a good trip down the low road.

When was the last time anyone actually listened to Cherry speak? He sounds like the kid in Billy Madison who can't get the sentence out of his mouth. He goes on these rants and it takes him twenty seconds to get to the point and another fifteen seconds to spit it out. "Ta-ta-today Jun-ya."

The man's clothes give off a Queer Eye vibe, and also seem to be something of a national symbol for Canadians.

I did not grow up in Canada. I did not grow up with CBC in my home. I did not grow up watching "Coach's Corner." I can, however, read and do research. What has this guy ever done that warrants giving him such a high pedestal? I have been told by oh so many hockey "experts" that to be considered great, players and coaches have to have Stanley Cup championships. Don Cherry has how many? Anyone?

Some how, though, this guy took his wallpaper themed suit coats and lack of filter between brain and mouth, and turned it into a career of stuttering through rants and disparaging players that he likely has never met and barely watched them play.

I say shut your yapper Mr. Cherry, and I say it knowing full well I am an absolute nobody. Just a blogger and minor sports writer trying to scrape by, and I am calling out one of the names in hockey, one of  the icons of the sport, and the "Seventh Greatest Canadian" of all time. Seventh greatest Canadian, huh? That would be like naming John Madden the seventh greatest American.

Now,moving past Don Cherry, I am a hockey purist. I wish Cal would take his helmet off, too. I wish that everyone in a fight would take off their helmet the way it used to be done. It is respectful of your opponent, and of the game. Somehow, somewhere, though, it became an after thought. Most fights have two guys square off, both with the lids in place.

Don Cherry needs to go back and take a few lessons on public speaking, reading, and perhaps a visit from someone from Bravo. Maybe then I could actually sit through more than about five minutes of him and then we could have a real discussion about what it is he is so upset about.

****EDIT****

Video of the Coach's Corner, Click Here. (4 minutes in)