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by Kolby Solinsky

Editor, White Cover Magazine

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Yeah, yeah. Carey Price is the best goaltender in, like, forever. PK Subban, PK Subban, PK Subban. And of course, there’s the whole ‘home crowd’ thing… basically half of Rogers Arena erupted whenever Montreal did anything excellent last night, and they nearly blew the roof off the place when Max Pacioretty tied things at two late in the third period. It was cool to see, sure. And the red sweaters look just sweet. But it was also pretty damn embarrassing – there were more Miiii-llllerrrr chants (in a mocking way) and there were more CA-REY! chants (in a pump-up way) than there was a wave or a Go-Canucks-Go. And really, when you’re wearing a Canucks t-shirt in the Canucks’ building, you sort of just want to cower away and wait for the win to work itself out.

Last night, the Habs inhabited Vancouver. (Get it?)

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I’m happy to proudly cheerlead for my friend Richard Loat – a pal of my other programs, so to speak – who is currently on a StartUp Bus through Europe, the sort of ‘incubating’ roadshows that combines Entrepreneuers (like Vancouver’s Loat) with Hackers, pitting them both against and alongside each other, tasking them to build a business in 72 hours.

The bus ends in that beautiful, relaxingly cosmopolitan and elegant capital city of Vienna, Austria – after a 100,000 kilometre journey – and Loat and his team will pitch their new company ‘PeopleRank’ at the 2014 Pioneers Festival

But what is PeopleRank?

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Welcome to Plinko.

The middle. The blender, the juicer. I like to think of NHL seasons that way, and I think I sort of have to. Because it’s not very easy to write about these teams and these players all the time. If you’re going to try to find a conclusion from each game, and if you’re going to treat each note in a very long ballad like it really matters on its own, then you’re going to fail. Writing about sports can suck… and your peers litter their tomes with cliches and needlessly short first lines (like, welcome to Plinko) to the point that they all sound the same. And it’s not fun to read, unless the writer is saying something you already believe. But it’s not their fault because, like I said, writing about sports can suck. And it’s hard – it’s hard to make things matter over and over, especially when they don’t and won’t. Because, eight months later, only one team will win a Stanley Cup. And then all 30 of them start over, including the champion.

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by Kolby Solinsky

Editor, White Cover Magazine

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You’re going to read a lot about Steve Nash. Starting… last night.

He’s the greatest basketball player in Canadian history, and it’s nice to be able to write something like that without having to preface it with reportedly or arguably, because it really isn’t arguable. Next to Steve Nash, there’s nobody else. So expect the eulogies, if you haven’t seen them already. They’ll ask, What is Nash’s legacy? and they’ll toast him like he’s dead at 40. But he’s not, and neither is what he’s created.

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by Kolby Solinsky

Editor, White Cover Magazine

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Yes, all hail Gary Bettman. The anti-Goodell, right?

Wrong.

I won’t not give Bettman credit for indefinitely suspending L.A. Kings defenceman Slava Voynov. It’s the right thing to do, or at least it’s the socially leaned-upon thing to do right now. With the way the NFL’s commissioner fumbled (pun intended) his handling of Ray Rice’s domestic assault case, the heads of America’s other three major leagues have a pretty clear template now for how to deal with the issue when one of their athletes is looking for his league to cover it up – react harshly, and go from there.

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by Kolby Solinsky

White Cover Magazine

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The moment you say you don’t want to talk about it, you’re already in the conversation.

We’re a full eight months from next June’s NHL Draft, and already the rankings – the unfair and uneven weekly updates on which 17-year-old has risen or fallen in picked and chosen seven-day periods, the blustering from a nation of sports writers who simply take Bob McKenzie’s research and mix and jumble his Top 30 into their own unique order so they can say, “It’s not plagiarism” – that’s already started.

And it’s like quicksand. Because now I’m talking about it. And this is all done for us because, in that same weird way that makes us complain about the smell beef jerky leaves on our breath while we wolf down yet another strip, we want it.

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What Can Kane Teach Crosby?

You know why Sidney Crosby’s the best player in the world?

Because he’s terrified he’s not.

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This isn’t a real ‘Hockey Night in Canada’ montage, but it’s of course inspired by the magical music videos the CBC’s wunder-editor Tim Thompson puts together every Saturday.

And it’s made to celebrate the 60-plus years of HNIC, from the commentary of Bob Cole to the elegantly simple coverage from Canada’s public broadcaster.

You don’t have to love the CBC, and you may even hate it, but let’s just take a moment to admit that it’s a huge part of our history, our cultural heritage, and whatever hockey super-channel Rogers forms from now on will always be measured against it.

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by Kolby Solinsky

Editor, White Cover Magazine

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Hold up, do I still have time?

Perhaps I’m cutting it close, waiting until DAY 1 of the NHL season to toss these half-baked predictions online. Then again, if you’re looking for buckets of copied and pasted analysis and a thousand clicks into content – if you want me to tell you something you already know – then you’ve got Sportsnet, and Puck Daddy, and your own Twitter feed for that.

(Full credit to Canada’s new overlords at Rogers, by the way, for their hockey homepage. If you were hoping for a sort of Trade Deadline-ish frenzy of headlines and last name montages, they’ve got what you’re looking for.)

But why am I wasting space on this introduction?

Like I said, I’m a little late. But here’s my look at the West’s Pacific Division in 2014/15…

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*Also published by Black Press on BCLocalNews.com

by Kolby Solinsky

Editor, White Cover Magazine

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Can we just stop asking ourselves – our collective selves – the question? Because the answer is unflattering.

Yes. Derek Jeter is overrated. Yes. He has been retiring for what seems like three years, the athletic retirement equivalent to the end of Lord of the Rings. He’s baseball’s version of Bruce Springsteen, the guy who’s been on your radio for so long he has gone from folksy New Jersey hero to He Who Must Not Be Insulted. (If you hang around long enough, your longevity will surely outweigh your rivals’ superior talent.)

But it’s not bad that Jeter’s overrated.

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