The Discovery Channel kicked off Shark Week, its weeklong celebration of the San Jose Sharks NHL franchise today in style, with several brand new programs about the mediocre hockey team. The yearly tradition of changing the entire channel over from nature programming to sports, and focusing on such an obscure franchise, has surprisingly worked out great for the network. Families gather around the television to tune in and see what crazy footage the Discovery cameras have captured every year.
The fun started for 2010's Shark Week with a new episode of Shark Hunters, about the brave men and women who patrol the streets of San Jose and hunt Sharks players in the offseason. Highlighting this year's premiere was the catch of a six foot 1 inch long, 213 pound goalkeeper named Thomas Greiss, who the Shark Hunters snagged coming out of a nightclub. They strung the man up in the center of town by his jaws, so people could take a look at one of the largest specimens caught so far on the program.
The show has garnered a lot of controversy with human rights groups, but the open hunting laws on San Jose Sharks players have stayed in place. The city claims that having it legal to catch and kill their hockey players is good for tourism, and doesn't really affect anyone outside of the players, as these people play in the NHL, so it's not like anyone knows who they are. They are also mostly Canadians. Besides, kids and families enjoy posing with the strung up dead bodies of Sharks players in the town square.
Other programs to be shown during this year's Shark Week include the specials:
- Feeding Time- Documenting the double decker tourist buses that carry tourists around San Jose and throw raw fish and chum over the side to Sharks players who circle around the bus.
- Ultimate Shark Jump- Happy Days star Henry Winkler attempts to jump over a San Jose Sharks practice ice rink on water skis, with the dangerous players circling below.
- How To Survive A Shark Attack- Experts tell how to stay safe should you be attacked by a Sharks player who may mistake you for his usual prey of seal.
Critics of Shark Week continue to ask why such an unpopular sport and franchise was chosen as the subject for a weeklong celebration. Discovery claims that they just beat out more popular teams such as the New York Yankees and Pittsburgh Steelers. They say that the week is so popular, they can't change it to someone else now. Also, things such as hunting men and throwing raw fish around onto the streets are probably not allowed in a real city like New York.
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The NHL has extended an
offer to LeBron James to officially declare him the best player in
hockey history, if only he will come play for the league and help bring a
little of his publicity. Commissioner Gary Bettman said that all this
debate about who is better, him or Kobe, can easily be settled if he
just comes to the NHL. He explains there is no Kobe here.
"We are prepared to say he's the best ever," said Bettman. "Gretzky is nobody, Crosby is nobody, LeBron will be the king of the hockey world. We're going to also retire his jersey and number, so that no one else will be able to use it around the league. He's also had trouble winning a championship, so we'll even give whatever team he wants to play on this year's Stanley Cup trophy. It's not like Pittsburgh or Detroit needed another one of these anyway. This is a heck of an offer, which I don't feel the NBA can ever match."
The allure of ending the who's the best debate, plus a free championship, might be enough to get LeBron to make the move. Both he and his puppet are considering making the move, and Nike is working on a new pair of LeBron skates. Something that would appeal to kids in urban areas and be comfortable enough where they could wear them to school.
LeBron expects to make a decision some time over the offseason. Bettman has already begun an expansion of the NHL Hall Of Fame called the LeBron James Wing.Add a comment
The Cleveland Browns have been announced as having clinched the final playoff spot in the NHL Eastern Conference playoffs today. It's a bold move and obvious by the league to try and get a team in the NHL playoffs that sports fans would actually care about.
"The Cleveland Browns have a rich and excitable fanbase," said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman in a press conference earlier today. "They want to see their team make the playoffs, and since that doesn't ever seem to happen for them in the NFL, why not let them come and try their hand at our postseason. We showed them a fun highlights video about hockey, and they are looking forward to trying to learn how to play over the course of the next week.
"Look, it was them or the Florida Panthers...I'm the Commissioner of this league, and I wasn't even sure the Panthers were a real franchise until I looked them up on wikipedia."
The Browns themselves were very excited about finally having clinched a playoff berth somewhere. To celebrate, they all met in a Cleveland supermarket and sprayed cheap champagne on themselves in the wine section.
Their fans meanwhile didn't quite know what to make of the announcement.
"Well, I'm glad we finally get to watch our Browns in the postseason," said fan Vic Mangold. "But, these guys can barely play football, I can't imagine they're going to be able to learn a new sport in only a week or two."
The news is very exciting for the franchise, which was also in the running to get a bid from the Arena Football League to appear in their postseason this year. But then they decided there was no way the Cleveland Browns would ever really make even the AFL playoffs, and decided to just shut down the league instead.