It doesn’t matter whether you have a job or you’re in school…the same principles apply. Do you remember times when everything in the job was going your way? When everything you turned in got the best marks…the best brownie points? Ahh, the satisfaction you felt. The way everything you touched turned to gold.
Yep, it’s the same for everyone. We all have times like that and there is a singularity to periods like that in life.
And what is this grand singularity? Well, it’s just plain old hard work. Simple concept. You work hard you get results. You flog the pooch, you’re going to get found out. Maybe not right away. But it is a karmic certainty that the poop, fossilized or otherwise, will come raining down on your hoary head. And you’ll probably even be ready for it because in your heart you’ll know, you’ll just really know, that you haven‘t been delivering. So you’ll have your excuses all lined up. Haven’t had much sleep lately. The kids are acting out (or the parents are acting out) or I’ve got a sore arm. Or the dog peed on my homework. And you’ll find the occasional kindly boss, or teacher, that will buy in to it. Buy it by the smelly truckload.
But folks, that ain’t me.
So this team that I’ve been stuck to since 1970?
Well, sure, I’m sticking with them. But the truth is, this team has enough talent. Look who we beat after Luongo was injured and before Sundin signed! So talent isn’t the problem. Some of the pundits will say well, they’re pretty fragile right now. They’ve lost their confidence.
Well sure they have. They aren’t working hard enough! And they may deny that, but I submit the evidence is irrefutable. Here’s the proof that they just aren’t working hard enough. They’ve lost their last six at home…many against teams we were expected to beat. That’s proof.
Yes, I know they are working. They’re breathing hard when they reach the bench. But just not hard enough to succeed at this level. It could not be more simple. It is that firm grasp of the obvious that I mentioned at the outset.
[Former Montreal GM] Sam Pollack used to say that 95% of the NHL players were close enough in talent that the major difference between winning and losing was one of attitude.
And our attitude last game was one of standing around waiting for someone else to lift the team. Someone else to be the hero. And the worst part wasn’t that there weren’t any heros emerging. The worst part was that most guys were just standing around waiting for one. And when you are standing around in hockey, you are dead on the ice when you receive a puck. And then it looks like a Parisian Circus. Guys tripping over the blueline. Pucks bouncing off the stick. Waiving the stick at the opposition as they fly by.
That’s it in a nutshell, folks.
That’ll be 50 pesos, please.
But like I keep repeating, it’s a firm grasp of the obvious and fortunately, the solution is just as obvious.
GET TO WORK!
I’ve had the occasional correspondence with Oiler fan Mark Pederson and he maintains the exact same problem occurs with the Oilers. When they stand around they may swing into action and look like they are really working. But they aren’t. And when that happens the Oilers aren’t successful.
So get to work, boys. Every time we don’t have the puck, outnumber them and take the puck back. Fight and win possession every time. And when you work, you’ll start making the right decisions again because hard work breeds that kind of confident attitude where the puck starts to bounce your way. And head into the dirty area in front of their net. Pay the price to score.
Pay the price to win.
As for the game: Well, I thought we worked hard; just not hard enough to win.