Getting Angry With Greg Mitchell – 22nd October

I’m writing this on Wednesday, 20th October but you can ignore that. In fact you could change the date to anywhere between now and any date in at least the last five years or, come to think of it the next five years as well. Yep, we’re back on the hockey roundabout and the way we keep going round and round you’ve got to think that Puxatawny Phil has to be a hockey fan!
Paddy O’Connor has been bleating about the “big boys” spending more than they can up in Newcastle. If the EIHL owners were in junior school he’d be the speccy kid sat at the front of the class with his hand permanently in the air. I’m just heartily sick of the poor old us attitude that season after season comes from the North East. They need to realise that moaning is not the most attractive of personality traits (I’ve tried to explain this to my daughter as well but she’s a teenager so I’m wasting my breath there as well) and it’s not going to bring people in through the door.
Don’t get me wrong. I do, in a way, feel sorry for Newcastle and not just because they had to suffer all those years under Rob Wilson. It can’t be easy playing out of Whitley Bay. You arena kids don’t know how lucky you are with your sight lines and leg room (I’m not that tall so Sheffield doesn’t really bother me). Get yourselves up to Whitley for a game if only for the experience. There, I’ve just done as much positive marketing as Newcastle appear to have done in the last few years. They need to get off their backsides and stop the continual poor us bleating and grow a pair. Work with what you’ve got don’t moan that you haven’t got as much as others. Do Blackpool moan that their players aren’t as good as Manchester United’s or that they haven’t got as much money to spend on players? No, they just get on with it because they know that a) it wouldn’t do them any good and b) people would just call them moaners.
Still, at least they’re trying to live within their means (well, that’s what they tell us all the time). A certain team between here and Newcastle don’t seem to have grasped what this means. A new fraud probe has just been announced and rumours abound of somewhat irregular payment methods (I Just worry that they can afford all the envelopes, if of course they are using them). Crowds are still staying away in droves but all their fanbase want to talk about is how marvellous Andy Carson is, that Campbell’s only mistake was that he didn’t check who he was biting before he sunk his fangs in, beating Panthers and their league position. Maybe that’s where Sheffield are going wrong. Judging by their attitudes Sheffield should be playing games out on the savannas where the other ostriches live. There’s the odd dissenter who dares to take a more worldly view but they’re immediately slapped down by Bob’s puppets as having an agenda against the club. I’ve never entirely believed anything that has fallen from Bob Westerdale’s mouth but that’s because in the past he’s mainly been regurgitating the insults, braggadacio and bile that’s been spouted by that team.Sheffield’s crowds can’t sustain the Arena’s rent but playing out of Ice Sheffield isn’t good enough in their lofted self opinion. You don’t need to be Carol Vorderman (and I doubt even she could make Sheffield’s books balance) to see the massive flaws in this argument. It seems to be a simple case of good hockey until Christmas if they’re lucky or a sustainable level of hockey for the foreseeable future (or 10 years before the Guess project is built). Guess which most of them would choose?
In fairness it has to be said though that Sheffield’s not the same without Dave Simms. I didn’t say it was better, or worse, just not the same. He’s mystified many by sort of supporting our coach this week with comments about our 12-2 scoreline against the hapless Dundee Stars. Apparently, some think that it isn’t the done thing to rack up a few goals against the cellar dwellers in a game where, at times, it was harder to not score and that all round paragon of virtue and inhabitant of the moral high ground, Paul Thompson, would never do such a thing. Maybe High and Mighty was a far more appropriate sponsorship than we ever realised. Simms doesn’t agree with this but there’s some sort of code against it and you should do it in some places but not in others and blah blah blah. I’ll be honest, I haven’t read it in depth because basically life’s too short but what I have read leads me to a single conclusion – what a crock. At the end of the day this league could come down to goal difference (probably to decide whether we get third or fourth place) so you’ve got to score goals and if that means steam rolling probably the worst team I’ve seen here in many a year then so be it.
Dundee have already started making changes following last Saturday’s debacle and I’d like to say good luck to Ladislav Kudrna – he’s going to need it. There’s plenty of people that think (or want us to think) that they know what they’re talking about saying it’s a good signing for Dundee and it might be. I just wonder if it’s a good one for Ladislav!

Don’t forget I’m on Facebook and I managed to update my status this week and like a couple of things. If anyone could tell me what else I’m supposed to do with it please let me know. My duaghter says it’s for talking to your friends but I said that was pubs are for. Tell me she’s not right.

Greg Mitchell


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