Breaks. How exactly are they considered solutions? Aren’t they a way to escape from reality? Aren’t they a way to look away from what seems to be disturbing right in front of our eyes? By the way, isn’t that called fleeing?
In the world of Sports, as in our every day lives, taking breaks, taking time outs, seem to be expected as the new revolutionary solution. Ultimate, no; but expected to work, yes.
Growing up, studying Mathematics problems, I have always been told that if I was struggling to find the answer, going out to take some fresh air might help. "Take some fresh air", "clear my mind", "take a time out", whatever works.
The answer was always in there.
It is common to say that someone who is too overwhelmed by his problems, or issues, might be so absorbed that he might not see the simplest solution.
That applies in relationships. Relationships as in “Ross and Rachel”. Once Ross is gone, she realizes what she just did. However, in this particular case, it turned out not that pretty. Well, break or not break, referring Kovalev’s $4 million contract to a TV series isn’t even accurate, but you know what I mean.
In the scale of the all-time solutions that consist of not looking at the problem itself, taking a break would come right before “going back to the basis.”
You take the break, you clear your mind, you come back and you start all over again.
So well surprised was I, learning yesterday, prior to the false code-red of the “press conference of the year”, that after the 6-2 loss to the Calgary Flames Monday, the players went bowling.
The better new was that the coach initiated the journey, and that everyone had fun.
“We were laughing, we were teasing each other” said Guy Carbonneau. Remarkably funny and painful at the same time, objects of tease must have been abundant. After all, for a rare time, we are looking at a real team loss.
Not the cliché, not the expression we use when we do not want people to point at our favorite players; this time, it is true.
It is not just the goaltender, it is not just the players at the blue line, and so on; it is everybody altogether. And at times of struggles come existential questions.
What if Gainey had done this differently? What if Carbonneau hadn’t done that?
Just like the last playoffs raised numerous questions on Huet’s trade, losing streaks can alter perspectives as well. Fine.
But just as doubts might rise among fans, the worst thing to happen is that they will rise among players. Once the Flames started to put on their hockey show, Montreal just stopped playing. Halak started to receive puck after puck, shoot after shoot. “Is this what hell looks like?”
For some, this might be perceived as an excess of trust. Seriously, think about it. They haven’t won decently in a long time, and what they do: they go bowling! What about locking them in a room for 24 hours, just themselves, so they can look into each other’s eyes, and say things as they are?
But in the end, Bob Gainey’s wisdom is now Guy Carbonneau’s. The talent is there, the answer is there; they just can’t work it through.