It Got Weird on NHL Overtime Tuesday Night

From an outsider perspective, NHL Overtime seems to be a clear shot at giving perpetually potential NHL television star Jeremy Roenick his own nightly platform. They’ve made him – and host Bill Patrick – the only permanent parts of the show, with a rotating third chair, the nightly series (which airs 30 minutes after every VERSUS hockey broadcast until January) seems destined to try and give JR a chance to make waves. He certainly gave it his best shot on Tuesday night’s episode, in which he went on a strange rant about Sidney Crosby and often seemed at odds with guest analyst Eddie Olczyk.

Early on in the show, yet another interview with Crosby in which he proclaimed there were no updates to be made with regard to his return to the NHL. After the clip, Roenick sounded off, asking “aren’t you guys sick of all this by now?” of the media’s constant interviews of the NHL’s biggest star, adding “I’m sick of it. I’m sick and tired of listening to Sidney Crosby saying, ‘Nothing is new yet.’” He added that he didn’t want to be insensitive about concussions, but he feels that Crosby is “boring on television” and the media should just stop interviewing him. Olczyk responded reasonably, saying “When you’re the face of the National Hockey League, people wanna know every day.” He’s right. It seems strangely naive, given how Roenick’s immersed himself in the media throughout his NHL playing and post-playing career, that he would think it’s an actual issue that Sidney Crosby is talking too much. I can remember Roenick – particularly during his stint in LA – appearing on television shows (Best Damn Sports Show Period, for instance) for much less important reasons. The NHL’s biggest star’s health has been in question for nine months now. If he is able to talk about it at all, then anything he says is newsworthy, like it or not.

It was the first of many disagreements between Roenick and Olczyk, who seemed legitimately miffed by his fellow former Chicago Blackhawk when discussing various NHL trophy candidates. They tensely debated the merits of goaltenders like Nick Backstrom and Ilya Bryzgalov in a dialogue far beyond what would seem reasonable for a late night hockey show. The two disagreed during a bizarre power rankings segment as well, in which Roenick’s top four ranked teams (San Jose, Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles) were all – coincidentally, I’m sure – teams that he’d played for during his NHL career. Neither picked the Pittsburgh Penguins, who’d just come off a four-game stretch in which they’d gotten seven points, largely without the help of Crosby or Evgeni Malkin.

It all came to a bit of a head towards the end of the show when, after Roenick “quoted” something he thought Olczyk had said regarding the Sedin twins. Olczyk tersely responded, seemingly to both Roenick and Patrick, “Listening is a skill, and you need to take a class in that, because that is not what I just said.”

Olczyk won’t be back for more Overtime tonight, as he’ll be calling the Bruins/Hurricanes game earlier on for VERSUS. It’ll be Keith Jones’ turn to do battle with Jeremy Roenick. It’ll be interesting to see if Eddie O. returns to the Overtime stage later in the season to go another 10 rounds with JR. It may not have been good television on Tuesday – it definitely wasn’t better than the ever-improving NHL Live! earlier in the night – but it was certainly watchable, albeit in the strangest way.

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About stevelepore
Steve Lepore is the Managing Editor of Puck the Media. His work has been featured in The Hockey News. Feel free to contact him at stevemlepore@gmail.com

3 Responses to It Got Weird on NHL Overtime Tuesday Night

  1. paranoidpuck says:

    I didn’t think it was weird. I thought it was great for Versus.

    As I wrote on my blog, I thought JR got lost a little bit in making his point. He needed to point fingers at the media instead of Sid. Its the media thats following Sid, not the other way around. JR worded it the wrong way but I think he makes a good point if you realize his beef is more with the media.

    I don’t know when Edzo is scheduled to be back on Overtime again but it should be ASAP. This is the first time Overtime has ever had any buzz and Versus would be wise to capitalize on that.

  2. A Moose says:

    Will Keith Jones be on VersusSN tonight? Flyers home opener and I haven’t read/heard if he was completely gone from Flyers telecasts completely. So perhaps someone could clear that up.

  3. DM says:

    Roenick has a valid point, he’s just not composed enough to get to it. ParanoidPuck is dead on, he got lost in what he was trying to say, maybe because he was surprised at Edzo’s response. Or maybe he’s not good enough to put together a complete thought yet. Either way, it was like a car wreck that you can’t turn away from with those two. Did one of these two run over the other one’s dog or something? Not sure why Edzo was angry at literally everything, either.

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