Lately it’s been the belief of more than a handful of opinionated hockey fans that the National Hockey League has conspired to land Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins as the Eastern representatives in this year’s Stanley Cup finals. Although, it’s a bit of a paradox, as most are also of the opinion that Gary Bettman could not successful run a lemonade stand, let alone one of the largest sports leagues in the world.
Facing these two conflicting outlooks, I’ve carefully weighed all the evidence at hand and have come to the most logically and reasonable conclusion. Secretly Gary Bettman must be an evil genius who has concocted an elaborate scheme with a single goal in mind, getting the names of Sidney Crosby and the rest of the 2007-08 Pittsburgh Penguins etched on the Stanley Cup. His facade as an ignorant basketball fan that couldn’t set up a game of Mouse Trap, is just that, a cover. And behind it he’s put this wicked plan into action.
I can see him now, in his office high above the city of New York, sitting in a large leather chair. If my early research into the realm of evil geniuses is to be trusted, we can safely assume he has a large cat sitting on his lap, and he’s probably petting it as he manically laughs. From here he instructs the on-ice officials to give all the calls to the Penguins.
The only question is just how long this has been going on. Of course he fixed the 2005 Draft Lottery in the Penguins favor. That’s a given. And of course the 2004-05 NHL lockout was just all part of this scheme to send Crosby to Pittsburgh. But how far back does it really go? Are you a Hartford fan who lost their precious Whalers to North Carolina? Guess what? All to get the Penguins into the 2008 Stanley Cup. The attendance problems, leaving ESPN, Mighty Ducks 3, the canceling of Arrested Development. Yeah … to get the Penguins to the Cup. For the love of Buster Bluth, just how deep does this go?
Sure, with everyone so hot on the trail the past couple weeks Bettman has had to cool it off a bit. Throw a couple curveballs. He called for the War Room to disallow Crosby’s goal against the Flyers in the Semi-Finals, but I can see straight through that. What to the untrained eye may appear as stellar play of Evgeni Malkin and shutdown goaltending of Marc Andre Fleury is clear to me. I’ve got Bettman pegged behind the scenes playing puppet master. You can’t pull the wool over my eyes.