Sticks and stones

DON BRENNAN, BRUCE GARRIOCH, CHRIS STEVENSON AND TIM BAINES, SUN MEDI

, Last Updated: 9:01 AM ET

TIM BAINES: Was it bush league of Leafs coach Bryan Murray to call for a measurement of Jason Spezza's stick?

DON BRENNAN: Wow! Did you hear about those changes while you were gone, Chris? BMur is now coaching the Leafs, apparently.

BAINES: Maybe it's wishful thinking that Bryan Murray was coaching the Leafs. Don, you and I are heading for another fight. No-holds-barred, no disqualification.

BRUCE GARRIOCH: I'm going to assume Tim meant Ron Wilson. Bush league? No. Brilliant? No. Arrogant? Yes. We all know what we think of this genius, Ron Wilson. Smartest guy he knows.

BRENNAN: Why is that arrogant? You know a guy is doing something illegal. Why not take advantage of it? It may have even been gutsy. Had Wilson been wrong, the Leafs would have been penalized. At least, I think that's how the rule goes. It's been so long since we've seen a stick measurement.

GARRIOCH: It's arrogant because I wanted to call Ron Wilson arrogant. They were still talking about it (yesterday). They have asked the league to take a look at the rule.

CHRIS STEVENSON: That's what the Battle of Ontario has come down to. We used to have Alfredsson slamming Darcy Tucker into the boards, taking the puck and scoring a goal in the playoffs. Now we have an illegal stick call. So sad.

GARRIOCH: Just one other thing on Wilson: He was just trying to keep the attention on himself. That's why he didn't play Martin Gerber. Wilson likes to be the centre of attention.

BRENNAN: He didn't play Gerber because he, like everyone else in the NHL, knows that Marty can't handle the heat. He would have allowed nine goals if the fans would have been on him.

STEVENSON:: I'm surprised somebody hadn't tried calling Spezza on it before this. When the Senators get back to playing games of consequence -- whenever that is -- he'll have to have two sets of sticks. One for the first period and a legal one for the third.

GARRIOCH: Every player in the league has their legal sticks for the third, Chris. Jamie Baker told us that in 1992-93 when the Senators first started.

STEVENSON: Apparently Baker should have let Spezza in on the conversation.

BRENNAN: Hey, not to change the subject (okay, to change the subject), how about the retirement of former 67's great Gary Roberts, huh? Twenty-one years in the league, and how many of them did he kill the Senators in the playoffs? Figures he quits the season they miss. His job is done here.

GARRIOCH: Somewhere, former Senators GM John Muckler is saying: "That (bleeping) Roberts cost me my job."

BRENNAN: One more time. Gaaaarrrrrry Rawwwbertttss. He always used to stick it to the Senators. It's a shame he didn't get a chance to play in a Senators sweater. He would have been a cult hero here.

STEVENSON: How about Bob Gainey whacking Carbonneau? My take: Gainey will quit as GM after this season. He's pulling out all the stops because he'll walk away after this season. I think he's had enough and his life experiences exceed the little bubble that is the NHL.

BRENNAN: Then what, he's only got about 15 games before filing his retirement papers, Chris? Or do the Habs sneak into the playoffs and give him 19 games. I hope Pierre "The Ghost" Gauthier takes over. He'll piss the Habs media off when he slaps the one hot dog limit on the press box.

BAINES: I have to mention that it's great to have Chris back on board. What a letdown this must be after spending a week with Canada's courageous troops, Lanny McDonald, Tiger Williams and a bunch of ex-NHLers along with some Canadian rockers.

STEVENSON: I missed you guys. For about a minute.

BRENNAN: Chris was gone somewhere? I thought he just took the trade deadline off like the No. 1 Senators' beat writer at the other English daily in town.

BAINES: Chris should also come clean and admit that he's a big Glass Tiger fan. And that's after all the ribbing I've taken for my love of Toto and old Canadian rockers like Loverboy, Harlequin, April Wine, The Stampeders, Honeymoon Suite, Max Webster and Triumph.

STEVENSON: I'd have to say I'm a fan of any band that would go to Kandahar to show support for our troops. Thin Red Line is a pretty good number, especially played in a war zone.

BRENNAN: Afghanistan? I thought you were in Arnprior.

STEVENSON: I'm remembering now why I didn't miss this while I was in Afghanistan.

BRENNAN: Hey Bruce, is it a good time for me to say that the only NHL teams hotter than the Senators (as of yesterday afternoon) are the Pittsburgh Penguins (six wins in a row) and the Carolina Hurricanes (four wins in a row)? Suddenly, all the Senators need is a 16-1 finish to make the playoffs, probably. I'm starting to really think they might do it. Not 50-50 anymore. 65-35 that they will, I'd say.

GARRIOCH: You can't change your prediction now. I told everyone you said 50-50 and that I was backing you.

BRENNAN: I'm funny, eh Bruce? Even funnier than Jethro's rope belt, eh Tim?

STEVENSON: That's a classic. Or the See-ment Pond, eh, Tim? How long did it take you to figure out Elly May was saying "Cement?" There's a debate: Elly May or Mary Ann from Gilligan's Island?

BRENNAN: Elly May for sure. I'd take Ginger over both of them, though. And Bailey Quarters, too.

BAINES: Don, I'm just trying to figure out if they cast you in a Three Stooges film, which character could you play? You're not smart enough to be Moe. You're not a Larry. While I can picture you with your head in a vice, you're no Curly. Maybe Shemp, or even worse, Curly Joe, the fifth and least relevant Stooge.

GARRIOCH: This is the stuff Publisher Gibbons tells me he hates. I'm not participating.


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