Sunday, April 3, 2011

Grabner and Neilsen's chances of NHL hardware lessened. Botta unintentionally at it again!

I honestly have to side with Garth Snow on this one. These writers pulling out (see article below) of voting on NHL Awards in protest to Garth Snow banning Chris Botta does nothing  but hurt the chances of Michael Grabner as rooking of the year (which he does deserve some consideration) and Frans Neilsen as the Selke recipient for best defensive forward. (Not nearly as deserving but still deserves some consideration). At the center of all this, once again, is Chris Botta. Not his fault this time, but you have to think of this as simply a domino falling from his continual scrutiny of the team in the past two years. (see here, here, and here for thoughts, comments, and a little history on the Botta/ Islanders incident from last fall)

You see, this is what being negative gets you. It not only hurts you, but now, it also affects others as well. Chris Botta has seen the error of his ways and has since turned what was once the best Islanders fan site on the web into a "please please please forgive me" fluff info site on how awesome the Islanders are and will be.

Over and over again. Sigh.

Not  to be too negative, at least he's trying.

Take note, children.

TORONTO – There is a quiet protest going on behind the scenes that threatens to affect the outcome of the league’s biggest award winners.

Three chapters of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association representing the New York Rangers, the New York Islanders and the New Jersey Devils have decided to pull out of NHL awards voting to support a colleague they feel was unfairly stripped of his credentials.

Chris Botta, who worked for the Islanders for decades before turning to the blogosphere the last few years, was barred from Islanders games earlier this season by the club. While the PHWA and the league tried to have him reinstated, Islanders GM Garth Snow calls it “a dead issue” and steadfastly refuses to give a public explanation.

So what started out as 177 voting members last week for awards like the Hart, Calder, Selke, Norris, Lady Byng trophies is now down to 157 members.

Snow said Saturday the unfortunate thing is while the movement is designed to retaliate against the Isles, it could actually save the club money via the bonuses Michael Grabner or Frans Nielsen could potentially win for the Calder and Selke respectively.

“What’s really unfortunate is they’re taking a stance like this as retribution for the club, but it only hurts Nielsen and Grabner,” Snow said.

“It doesn’t affect the club. but it can cost them money — money I’d gladly pay as bonuses.

“To me, it doesn’t make sense they’re taking the vengeance out on the organization.”

With 20 voters who watch the Islanders play regularly abstaining from the vote, both players’ chances of winning are reduced. It also hurts the chances of other players in the east, as voters typically vote for players with which they’re more familiar.

Chris Botta says he thinks the PHWA’s stance is admirable, but he has had nothing to do with it.

“Ask any of them, and I don’t think they give a hoot about me,” said Botta while at a Rangers’ practice Saturday.

“They want to fix this so it doesn’t happen to them or someone else in the future.”

The league has told the PHWA it is monitoring the situation and may have to act if more voters make similar protests, although no other chapters are expected to pull out.

Several executives around the league have long wanted to take voting away from the PHWA ,and this only helps their cause.

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