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Pique n yer interest

Liberals win, hockey fans lose


For anyone who has ever doubted the Canadian Broadcasting Corporations dedication to serve all the people of Canada equally, I found their coverage of the May 16 provincial election to be colourful, insightful and comprehensive.

And I hated every minute of it.

Unfortunately, the CBC also saw fit to preempt Game 3 of the Colorado Avalanche-St. Louis Blues playoff series partway through the first overtime period – a must-win for the Blues who were already down by two games.

While Colorado’s Stephane Yelle (born and raised in Ottawa) bore in on Blue’s goaltender Roman Turek, the screen flickered briefly and the game was replaced by the CBC’s Gloria Macarenko and Ian Hanomansing who announced that it was 8 p.m. and that the polls were officially closed.

At first I thought that it was a glitch, or that the producers had jumped the gun and would return with the game for the second overtime period. But as I watched numbers flash across the screen, and listened to talking head broadcasters describe the mood at various political party headquarters, it became clear that I would have to wait for the highlights to find out who won.

Hanomansing tried to explain the logic behind the move, i.e. there were no Canadian teams in the playoffs and that as a public broadcasting company the CBC had an obligation to show the election. I truly felt for the man because it was clear that even he knew how weak his arguments sounded.

One of the most exciting and hard-hitting playoff games in recent memory was completely ruined by a questionable call at head office.

I know that elections are important, but honestly! This election was a rout, a whipping, a spanking, a drubbing, and a foregone conclusion where the players were just going through the motions – and those are the worst games to watch. The final score was 76 for the Liberals verses 3 for the NDP (barring any changes as a result of a recount) – if politics were a sport, most viewers would have tuned out a long time ago.

The hockey game, on the other hand, was tied at three goals apiece – it doesn’t getting any more exciting than that.

And I don’t agree with the CBC’s assessment that there wasn’t enough Canadian content to delay their election coverage.

Colorado has the highest percentage of Canadian players in the league, with 15 Canadians out of 24 names on the roster. They are led by "Burnaby Joe" Sakic, one of the most dynamic players every to play the game, and backstopped by Quebec City’s Patrick Roy, arguably one of the best goalies in the history of the league. Every defenceman except for one is Canadian, and their defensive core is anchored by legends Ray Bourque of Montreal, Quebec, and Rob Blake of Simcoe, Ontario.