Hey Dan Bickley – Get Bent (Part THREE)

Constant curmudgeon Dan Bickley, escaping the latest round of Gannett cutbacks, offered yet another pointless snotty Coyotes post.

Bygones Be Bygones

Out clause? Who cares?

Out clause? Who cares?

I’ve taken issue with Mr. Bickley in the past (“Note To Dan Bickley: Get Bent” and “Note To Dan Bickley: Get Bent – AGAIN“) for his snide pieces about “my” team and “my” Captain. I am aware we should ignore the guy and focus on the positive press the Coyotes are getting. But, I’m not the Dalai Lama and this guy is simply a pain and you know where that pain is centered.

Coyotes fans have been in a great mood since we got the ownership news. Most of us on social media have made an effort to ignore the dwindling cadre of trolls that continue to poke their limp sticks at the Coyotes. It isn’t difficult when the future of the team is ensured and it looks bright. That mood isn’t about to be changed by yet another dribble of negativity from Bickley, we all know what to expect from the guy.

Still, does this sound like an inflammatory title and lede?

Escape clause limits warmth of Valley’s Phoenix Coyotes embrace

Raise a glass. The Phoenix Coyotes will die a natural death. Like cockroaches and Keith Richards, they belong in a survival manual.

It does to me and it does to the other usual anti Coyotes troll suspects that continue to delight in promoting Bickley’s posts.

Phoning It In

Bickley didn’t show up for the press conference at Jobing.com arena on Tuesday, August 5. The end of a four plus year ordeal that garnered significant international coverage didn’t warrant a drive to the arena. Dan didn’t want to burn the gas to cover arguably the biggest long term story in the NHL. As a “sports columnist” in the Valley, I am under the impression it is his JOB to do so.

He could have even scored a free sandwich if interrupting his lunch was the problem.

The post goes on to bemoan the existence of the “out clause” without offering any substantive analysis, history or information. Bickley sniffs at the fifty MILLION dollar loss requirement that could trigger the “out clause” as nothing that couldn’t be handled by a clever accountant.

Besides, smart accountants can perform magic tricks, if they really want to leave.

“Nobody’s playing any games with that,” Bettman said. “When you have this type of clause, you can’t play accounting games. The fact of the matter is it would require them to lose a real $50 million, and as I said, they have no intention of doing that whatsoever.

“And frankly, they’re not incentivized to do that. The best outcome is for the community and fans, the business community, to support the franchise and have this be the huge success we all believe it can be.”

Translation: Buy (sic) the time the out clause can be invoked, there will already be another team in Seattle. There will be nowhere left to go.

Dan probably isn’t so dense that he actually believes the City of Glendale could be so easily bamboozled with some tricky accounting pencil work. I never saw him at any of the City Council meetings educating himself in the finer points of the transaction. Had he done so, or had he even bothered to chat with some of his better informed colleagues, he would have known that the Coyotes books will be wide open to the City of Glendale per the ordinance, making “smart accountants” not a factor.

It sounds like Dan also isn’t aware of the revenue sharing benefits for the Coyotes that made this deal realistic for the investors. Again, had he bothered to ask the questions of any of the principals or hobnobbed with more diligent reporters about how the Coyotes could work in Glendale, he’d be aware of it.

Bickley’s last point above doesn’t make much sense either.  If the intent of the “out clause” is, as Dan speculates, to drop a real or imagined fifty million dollars to relocate the team and score some windfall, would they want the pool of potential relocation cities to be exhausted? Nope.

Home Town Loyalty

What about THIS story, Dan?

What about THIS story, Dan?

A consistent lack of positive attention from the local press for the Coyotes has been evident since the waning of the salad days after the team arrived in town. Other than brief flurries of activity around playoff time, coverage for the Coyotes is either nearly nonexistent or negative. Yes, there are a few bright spots on the local scene, but they don’t get the screen time the naysayers get.

Bickley could have paid attention to the drama surrounding the Glendale vote for the arena management agreement before he wrote a piece criticizing something he doesn’t understand. If he had bothered, he would have had enough facts to make an intelligent discussion of the “out clause” possible. But, he didn’t put in the effort and it shows.

Like a kid that hasn’t done his homework that’s handed an essay question pop quiz, Bickley made it up on the fly. To cover his ignorance tracks, he intones the name of Keith Richards and sprinkles in misguided opinion. People who follow the Coyotes spot it as drivel instantly. The damage is done when “average Joe” readers reads the tripe and are led in the wrong direction by incomplete and wrong information.

There’s something to be said for showing loyalty to the town that, essentially, puts food on your table. That doesn’t mean blind homerism or ignoring the warts, but it does mean showing some real support for the home town teams. Doing so doesn’t make you less of a “journalist”, it makes you human. How much effort would it take to join the celebration for a few weeks and “pump up” the future of the Coyotes instead of throwing limp darts at the same dartboard, Dan?

Look on the positive side for a change, see how that works for awhile Dan. Until then, get bent, okay?