Tuesday April 10, 10:21 p.m.
Well, a blue-and-white team lost horribly to a cascade of boos and derisive cries last night. The big problem was that it wasn't the Leafs...they slunk out last Saturday. Nope, these were the Blue Jays in their home opener, for heaven's sakes! After winning their first two games in extra-inning thrillers, the Jays were shot down in their last game in Cleveland in a heartbreaker 3rd game, and just bollixed up at SkyDome last night (yup, I categorically refuse to refer to the stadium as the Rogers Centre) in the 9th inning. The goat was a relief pitcher by the name of Santos. The only relief he provided was the relief on his face after moping out like Charlie Brown. There were 50,000 Lucy Van Pelts vocally raining their derision on him. Perhaps, it was pretty harsh in just their 4th game, but after suffering from a collapse like no other with the Leafs, and with the Raptors doing their usual ugly worst, I guess Torontonians have all become Howard Beale from "Network", and have gone to their proverbial windows and have started screaming "I AM AS MAD AS HELL, AND I AM NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!!"Understandable. The beer probably helped, though.
As for the Leafs, it was a "Good Cop-Bad Cop"day to wrap up things with the media. The Leafs organization took out a page in every major newspaper in the GTA and gave an official apology. Then, Brian Burke came out to have one of his old speak-and-rants with the amassed reporters. I was viewing the reaction to the apology. Torontonians reacted unsurprisingly icily, and a professor remarked that the apology was a wrong-headed move which made the Leafs look even weaker. I don't blame the fans for their reaction but I think the professor has spent too much time on the Klingon homeworld. After 7 years of non-playoff appearances, something tangible had to be done and the apology was the only quiver left. I'm sure those millionaries that make up that sorry bunch of hockey players are probably relieved that it was done that way instead of having reporters pull a tribute to Mike Wallace and force apologies from each and every one of them.