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This Week in Disrespect: We can’t rewind, we’ve gone too far

November 18, 2009

Traditionally, This Week in Disrespect deals with idiots whose primary medium of conveying their moronic ideas is via the written word. This is done for a number of reasons, but mostly because, well, college hockey doesn’t get much play outside of what some science doctors call “the internet.”

But occasionally we forget that the internet isn’t just all words, many of which are obviously disrespectful toward our dear Lowell River Hawk hockey program. The downside of the quote-unquote worldwide web is that it now allows idiots to broadcast spoken words, so that their baseless opinions can be even less thought-out than those written words, which at least take a few extra milliseconds to travel between brain and finger to type than the considerably shorter trip of brain to mouth. And it is in this horrible, Lovecraftian world of podcastery that the newest and greatest fount of disrespect we have encountered exists.

We were first tipped to its existence by an incoming link on this blog from something called wrbbsports.com. We’d not heard of this Northeastern-based radio station before, but we assumed that they were gigantic fans of our work, as they should be. As it happens, we were right. “One of our favorite reads, a Lowell hockey fan blog, rips apart the Hockey East weekly press release,” proclaimed the link to our wonderful dissection of Joe Bertagna’s condescension toward Lowell. It was nice to get the recognition, sure, but we’re showered with praise for our brilliance on a daily basis so one more bit of it wasn’t enough to really ping our radar beyond that.

But early last week, while cruising some Hockey East-related links, we happened upon their site again, and noted that they had, the week prior, posted an archived copy of a radio program called “Hockey East This Week,” the name of which is clearly inspired by the name of the feature you are currently reading. So we, in our infinite generosity, started listening.

What we heard was, frankly, enough to make us fear our heads would explode like in Scanners. It wasn’t so much that it was appallingly disrespectful (and believe us, it was that too) as it was disconcertingly amateur. We would link you to the podcast, but we like you, our fine readers, too much to subject you to the amount of braying jackassery these four(? five?) Northeastern students packed into less than an hour of air time.

They began the show, understandably, by discussing Northeastern’s “bye” week and how that would help the team going forward (it didn’t). But then a big, green-eyed monster called jealousy reared its ugly head. One of the more level-headed hosts noted that he thought Lowell was a somewhat interesting team with a good history and a nice arena. This was roundly scoffed at.

“Tsongas is a great arena but it’s not like Matthews,” noted one of these mouthbreathers.

That’s true. Tsongas is not like Matthews, because it’s not a decrepit, ancient, rat-infested dump in Roxbury. Let’s get one thing straight about Matthews: it is the worst rink in Hockey East. That’s what everyone in the league has been thinking for years. That Northeastern fans are proud of it underscores two things. First, that they have so alarmingly little over which to be prideful in their program that they will choose to actually brag about a rink that predates the abolition of slavery. Newsflash: lots of things from the 1800s weren’t so good. Typhoid, for one. No one goes around acting like that’s anything over which to pump your tires. So why make a big deal out of having a rink that no less an awesome president than Theodore Roosevelt once visited and likely considered to be shabby? Roosevelt also visited Cuba when it was still owned by Spain, and that was a long-ass time ago. Gimbels is gone, Husky fans. Long gone. Matthews is Gimbels. Second, and more obvious, standards at Northeastern are very, very low to begin with.

There was further talk in that installment that various hosts were “not sold on Lowell” despite its being, at the time, No. 8 in the country and 4-2-0. One of those hosts also noted that if Lowell were to sweep both Vermont and UNH that weekend, he would be “solder” on the ‘Hawks. We are, unfortunately, not fabricating that quote. We marvel at the decline of the American education system.

The next week, there was luckily no “Hockey East This Week” with which to torture ourselves, but we did take the time to listen to the part of the second hour of “Dog Pound Sports Sound” (which we consider to be a lot like the sound of one hand clapping). As we skipped around, we heard one of the knuckledragging hosts say, out of context:

“Typical Lowell move to do that.”

We wondered: about what could he have been blathering? Beating the Huskies in the Hockey East tournament? Winning in a way that makes people actually think the entire team is any good and not entirely the product of Brad Thiessen’s hard work? Not playing for a school that Reggie Lewis was so embarrassed to have attended that he actually died?

But we tired of wondering, so we skipped backwards a few seconds and found that he was talking about playing Alabama-Huntsville. What a typical Lowell move it is to do that. Outrageous is what it is! Why, they could have scheduled an out-of-conference colossus like Bentley for the last two seasons, or Brown the year before that. That’s how you steel yourself for postseason success, and the Huskies would kn.. oh wait.

And finally, because we are gluttons for punishment, we went back to the “Hockey East This Week” from the day before Northeastern played (and was beaten by) Lowell. This, we knew, would be full of TWiD fodder, and we were not disappointed.

“[redacted] Lowell, the team that cries about getting disrespected, but they haven’t done anything,” a know-nothing that we believe to be a third disrespector literally screamed in his impotent rage.

If fans of any team would know about not doing anything, it would be Northeastern, which has, for so long, been an afterthought in the Boston hockey scene, behind BU, BC, Harvard, UMass Boston, and the club teams from both Berklee School of Music and Tufts. They’ve played in a four-team tournament every February since before the Korean War and won it, what, four times? How is that mathematically possible? To be the least-prestigious team to play in the freaking Beanpot — and we’re including the Beanpots for women’s hockey, baseball, men’s and women’s soccer, rowing, and lacrosse — is really saying something. By the way, it should also be noted that Hockey East would rather have your women’s team play at Fenway than your men. Probably figure they’d play a higher-quality brand of hockey.

And as an added bonus it would keep out clueless riff-raff like you.

Oh yeah, and this part is being added like a day later, but this show is very clearly On the Radar supplanting Danny Dries. They are only On the Radar, and not suffering a worse fate, because that one guy on their show likes Lowell and talks it up at every opportunity, and who is very obviously a huge fan of ours. That’s why he knows Lowell is as for-real as it gets.

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