NHL hockey is finally here after a 119-day standoff between owners and the players union that robbed fans of nearly half the season. The Toronto Maple Leafs begin the season on the road against the Montreal Canadiens tomorrow night, and Toronto’s ever-loyal fans are readying their jerseys and face paint. Unfortunately, the Leafs’ chances of hoisting the cup this year are slim (Vegas oddsmakers peg them at 40:1). Given that, and our love of absurdly arbitrary sports odds-making, we dreamed up a few other possibilites that you probably won’t find in the local sports pages but will make good fodder for friendly wagers.
1:1 Odds that twice as much Don Cherry means twice as much embarrassment
This year, CBC is going to have two Coach’s Corner segments during Hockey Night In Canada, meaning twice the opportunity for Cherry to offend “pukes,” “pinkos” and the entire nation of Russia. On the upside, there’s also the potential for twice as many outrageous suits.
2:1 Odds that new GM Dave Nonis lasts the season
Much of the media scrutiny over Brian Burke’s abrupt dismissal focused on its strange timing—just days before players left for training camp. We can’t imagine the Maple Leafs brass wants to face the scrutiny of another ill-timed GM removal.
4:1 Odds that Joffrey Lupul once again dominates… on Twitter
Lupul was our favourite Leaf tweeting last year, but linemate Tyler Bozak put in a strong off-season performance, admitting a weakness for Justin Bieber, sharing political views and offering questionable sentiments about love.
100:1 Odds that the ACC’s hotdog stand is renamed after Nonis
Burke’s departure also meant Burkie’s Doghouse, the arena’s haute hotdog stand, had to be renamed. It’s now called The Dog House, a name we hope MLSE keeps in order to spare future GMs that small indignity.
1,000,000,000:1 Odds that the Leafs fans boycott games
masochistic dedicated hockey fans are responsible for 366 consecutive sellouts, not one of which was in the postseason. Some supporters may still be angry over the lockout, but a boycott is never going to happen, even if the team wasn’t giving out free tickets and all-you-can-drink hot chocolate.