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Sports Then and Now

Clowns, Dumps, and Mike Milbury 2

Posted on May 09, 2017 by Victor Uhlman

Joe-Louis-arenaI grew up in the Joe Louis Arena. Some of the best moments of my childhood were spent shuffling around clumsily on the ice of the Joe, strapped up in goalie pads that weighed twice as much as I did. Even at a young age, I felt honored to, in one way or another, share the ice with the Detroit Red Wings. As I grew up, I had the absolute honor of watching one of the greatest dynasties of hockey in their prime. I sat rinkside and watched Yzerman, Lidstrom, and the Russian five change the entire game right in front of my eyes. And when we couldn’t make it to the game, my entire extended family would crowd around our tiny television as if we were practicing some archaic religion, cheering and crying with every goal scored and every shot missed. The Joe hosted its last heartbreaking, yet cathartic game on April 9th, laying to rest one of the most legendary and charismatic ice hockey venues in the history of the sport. This is why I and many others were dumbfounded, yet not surprised, when NBC’s Mike Milbury called the Joe Louis Arena “a dump” in need of retiring.

Milbury is in the news again this week for referring to P.K. Subban, arguably one of the leagues most talented and lovable players, as “a clown” who needed to get a “rap on the head” from head coach Peter Laviolette. Ignoring just how asinine and problematic this statement is, it points to both a dangerous trend for Mike Milbury, and an even more dangerous one for NBC and the league itself. Read the rest of this entry →

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      Mike Gminski

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was a star big man who achieved great success at Camden Indoor Stadium in the era before Coach K and the One-and-Done big men became the norm at Duke University.

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