Nov 052011
 

And so here come the Canucks, the same group of whining cheap-shot artists who alternate between diving and slashing when they’re not sucker-punching or biting, all while refusing to drop their sticks.”

“[Schneider]’s the better goaltender right now and probably was a year ago, but the Canucks didn’t have the guts to play the right guy.”

“Of course, gutless is synonymous with Canucks.”

Ladies and gentleman, if you haven’t met before, you’ve just been introduced to Chicago-based columnist Barry Rozner from the Daily Herald. These quotes come from Thursday’s column which he wrote in anticipation of Sunday’s hockey game.

I’d say Rozner is back “with a vengeance” if it weren’t for the dribbling bellyaching he uses as a sorry approach to sports journalism… if you can call it sports journalism. He’s written multiple nasty articles on the Canucks, labelling them as “cowards” whose name would “dishonor the Cup.” In fact as a writer, he should know better than to overuse a term in one article, in his case, “gutless.”

Ah, Rozner, a man from humble beginnings who worked hard to get into the sports writing industry. If you read about his background, he seems like any other sportswriter – hardworking and ambitious, with shining, beady eyes that once dreamt of a bright career in journalism.

But then you read some of his columns and wonder, “How much did this guy get beat up as a kid?”

Outside of Chicago, Rozner is best known to Canucks fans, a group he quite obviously enjoys enraging whenever possible. Seriously, I think this guy’s a little evil. I’ve perused his other columns and haven’t witnessed anything close to the kind of tactless, over-exaggerating “writing” he seems to save for the Canucks.

In fact, most of his other columns are just damn boring. And maybe that’s the thing; maybe Rozner knows that pissing off Vancouver Canucks fans gets him attention he can’t garner from anything else he produces; attention that draws the highest amount of viewers to his articles. After all, the more hits his articles get, the happier his editors are. It’s all about the numbers.

And there are a hell of a lot of Canucks fans across North America, and even more people who love to hate the Canucks (as Rozner lovingly points out himself). Combine the two by writing a provocative article on the Canucks that no one can ignore, and you have a lot a lot of hits, don’t you?

Give him some credit; he knows what he’s doing.

Sure, maybe Rozner really does hate the Canucks – a word he actually uses over and over to describe them – but if you read any of his attacks on Vancouver (the city, its team, its fans), and manage to look past the bullying and macho vocabulary, you’ll find something quite simple underneath it all:

  • Troll (noun): One who purposely and deliberately (that purpose usually being self-amusement) starts an argument in a manner which attacks others on a forum without in any way listening to the arguments proposed by his or her peers. He will spark such an argument via the use of ad hominem attacks (i.e. ‘you’re nothing but a fanboy’ is a popular phrase) with no substance or relevance to back them up, as well as straw man arguments, which he uses to simply avoid addressing the essence of the issue.

Holy shit, whoever wrote that must know Barry Rozner!

We all know internet trolls. They hide behind their computer screens and smart phones, firing off one-sided personal attacks and ignorant commentary without fear of real-life repercussions. They’re everywhere, and they’re cowards.

Sound familiar, Rozner readers?

If you’re a fan, it’s easy to get angry when you read any of Rozner’s anti-Canucks articles. He’s actually quite triumphant at being nasty, and many of his points hit close to home (and aren’t necessarily wrong either). It’s how he delivers his points that make him sound more like a petulant child than a professional journalist, considering his attacks got nastier after the Canucks tossed his beloved Blackhawks from the playoffs.

But remember, if you get angry you’re just feeding the troll. Be smarter than him, and remember he just wants the views and the expected attention. He feeds off of it. It’s sad, really, how someone would forfeit their dignity as a journalist for some notice and a few more website hits.

I wonder if he and Rick Reilly are golf buddies?

Oh, and Barry, I’d like to see you call Kevin Bieksa a gutless, whining cheap shot to his face. Actually, I’m sure there are enough Canucks fans out there who’d gladly pay you to give it a try.

But you won’t, not for any amount of money. Hell, you won’t even speak with Vancouver media about your writing or respond to the Canucks fans you love to torment.

After all, why would you? You have your computer screen to hide behind.

I guess the term “gutless” isn’t only synonymous with the Canucks now, is it Barry?

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