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Bench Talk / Off The Wire

Continuing Our OHL Talk


By Fred Wallace

I did 2 Ontario Hockey League topics yesterday pertaining to the Robertson Cup Champion Hamilton Bulldogs.

Today, let's talk about the runners up, the Sault Ste Marie Greyhounds.

The Greyhounds established a franchise record for points this year; think about that in the 45+ year span of the organization.

In the first round of the playoffs they swept Saginaw and drew the focus and ire of hockey commentator Don Cherry no less for what he described as " hot dogging " with between the leg and lacrosse like goals.

And as the Attack and Kitchener will testify, that " Ignite the North " hand gesture after victories was grating.

But I noticed, outside of the hand gesture, there was precious little Globetrotter like goals against Owen Sound or Kitchener.

Maybe they were heeding Cherry's rant, but more likely as I saw it, they couldn't do it in Rounds 2 & 3 for a variety of reasons.

Not to take away from the Sault's record year, but they do NOT play in the Midwest Division where every night is a challenge. The Attack, Rangers, London, Erie before discard and Guelph are much more solid than the diet of Flint, Saginaw & Sudbury that the Greyhounds met more often.

Also, I think it's fair to say, if you hot dogged against Owen Sound or Kitchener, there would be a physical price to pay.

All of which brings me back to Hamilton, again the team that truly earned the OHL Championship.

IF, the Bulldogs were in the Western Conference....would they have won the title ? Where would Hamilton have finished and could Hamilton emerge from a playoff pile that might have included a record setting Soo team, the Rangers, Sarnia's best season, the Attack, plus London & Windsor before they discarded ?

Personally, I don't think so.

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