Thursday, May 3, 2012

The Truthiness: The Radulov and Kostitzyn Suspensions

The hockey world was shocked, SHOCKED, to find out that the Nashville Predators suspended Russian and Belarusian super-stars Alexander Radulov and Andrei Kostitzyn for "violating team rules".  Nobody on the team could be coaxed into explaining what exactly it is that the two had done to receive such a punishment. I mean, you're down 2 games to 0 against the Phoenix Coyotes, who might not even be a team next year, and you're going to suspend the two guys you brought in to score goals for you in the playoffs? Seems like a risky venture, but that's just without knowing the details.

People may not know this, but come playoff time, a lot of teams ask their players to live together in order to better monitor behavior and strengthen bonds, and Nashville is no exception. After the Weber incident, I sent a  former Watergate break-in veteran G. Gordon Liddy (lookalike) down to Nashville to bug their team house to see if I could catch some juicy inside tidbits about what the team had to say about the hit. Maybe discover they had a New Orleans-esqe bounty system or something. Up until now, the audio and video recording systems in place had yielded little. However, I had paid my spy for 7 games ahead of time, and so he kept tracking Nashville anyways, even out to Arizona, and that's where he hit pay dirt. Below is a transcript, of what happened that fateful night that Radulov and Kostitzyn came home late. Italicized text are notations made by my spy.
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Location: An undisclosed mansion in the greater Scotsdale, Arizona area. It is approximately 4:30am local time. It's dark inside and out of the house. Except for the lonely howl of a single coyote, it's quiet. 
(That could have just been Shane Doan trying to attract other teams to sign him in the off season)


Suddenly, the silence and darkness are simultaneously broken. At the end of the street, a lone car turns towards the Nashville Predator Team House, it's high beams piercing the pre-morning sky, the faint sound of TaTu playing over the hum of the engine.(Interesting. Whoever is in the vehicle is infatuated by Russian psuedo-bisexual techno music performers who haven't been relevant for 10 years)


The car stops in front of the house, and from the back seat climbs Nashville Predator forwards Alexander Radulov and Andrei Kostitzyn (Oh, well that explains the TaTu music)  The two, obviously intoxicated to some degree, quietly creep up to the doorway as the car drives off. 


The two giggle and shush each other as Radulov fumbles with the keys to the house, trying in vain to put the key into the keyhole. It isn't until Kostitzyn sets him up, giving him a completely clear and unobstructed view of the empty keyhole that Radulov is finally able to get the key in. 


(At this point I switched to internal cameras and microphones)
Slowly, the door creeps open. The two slip inside and quietly shut the door behind them and lock it. The two stop momentarily in the darkness to take off their shoes and attempt to quietly tip toe across the hardwood floors.


Suddenly, the lights snap on. We are all temporarily blinded by the unexpected brightness, but then I can begin to make out two figures standing in the hallway. As my eyes adjust, I can clearly see it is Nashville General Manager David Poile and Head Coach Barry Trotz. (Why is Barry Trotz wearing a fluffy robe and bunny slippers?)


Radulov, who has once again caught himself in the right place at the wrong time, immediately launches into a defensive rant in broken English:


Radulov: "What de fuck dis!? I'm onside! I deed nutting wrong! Andrei pushed me in!"
Trotz: "Whoa whoa whoa! Slow down! First off, Alex, you don't even know what onsides is. Second, we're not even playing a game right now, so just shut up!"
Kostitzyn: (muttering) "Thanks for selling me out, asshole"
Poile: "Hey hey. Guys there's no need to raise voices here. Let's just talk about this, okay? Now... (pause) ...I would just like to know if either of you two have any idea what time it is?"
(voice hollers from up the stairs)
Unknown Voice: "IT'S TIME FOR SOMEONE ELSE TO GET SOME ICE TIME!"
Kostitzyn: "Shut up, Jordan! You don't even have any friends!"
Trotz: "Jordan you get your ass back in bed RIGHT NOW MISTER!"
(I checked another video feed to confirm that it is, in fact, Jordan Tootoo sitting at the top of the stairs, giggling like an imp)


Poile: "Barry, Andrei now that is not helping. Listen to me. It is 4:30 in the morning. And we have to be up early tomorrow, we have to get moving, get our stuff all packed up to head back to Nashville..."
Trotz: "Meanwhile you two little bastards are out doing god knows what when you're supposed to be in bed! Where the hell where you two anyhow?!"
Poile: "Barry, we talked about the yelling and how it doesn't he-"
Trotz: "NO! I'm the head coach around here! These guys do what I tell 'em to do! Now answer me! WHERE. WERE. YOU. TWO?!" 
(You can see Radulov and Kostitzyn fidgeting uncomfortably. Also Jordan Tootoo is still at the top of the stairs, trying to keep his snickers from being heard) 
Kostitzyn: "We were....out"
Poile: "Out where, Andrei. And don't lie to me because I will know..."
Kostitzyn: "Uh...y'know out...with some friends. We uh... went to see a mov-"
Radulov: (interrupts) "Andrei, what is American word for 'hooker' ?" 

(Trotz and Poile stand there wide eyed and mouths gaped open. Kostitzyn pushes his face into his palm) 

Radulov: "What ees problem?"
Kostitzyn: "'Hooker' Alex...the American word for 'hooker' is HOOKER YOU STUPID MOTHER FU-"
Poile: "ANDREI! LANGUAGE!"
Trotz: "Well that's great. That's JUST great. We drop back to back games on the road, we're getting ready to head back to Nashville to turn this thing around, and you two knuckleheads think now is just a GREAT time to go out, hitting up those damned clubs, with their damned hippity-hop music, picking up loose women and doing GOD ONLY KNOWS WHAT, and then think you can just STROLL BACK INTO THIS HOUSE AT THIS UNGODLY HOUR! Well I have HAD IT with you two!"


(Radulov and Kostitzyn stand there, heads bent down and shoulders slunk in shame)


Poile: "Barry, let's...let's not do anything hasty, okay? We're all a little...upset right now. So let's...let's just go to bed and we'll talk about this in the morning."
Trotz: (points finger) "You two are suspended until your General Manager and I can figure out exactly how deal with the two of you."
Radulov: (indignant) "You can't do that! You're not even my real coach!"
Trotz: "Oh no, mister!? I will call The Oilers! You want me to do that? Have your sorry asses hauled off to Edmonton!?"
Radulov and Kostityzn: "...no, sir" 
Tootoo: "Hot damn! Now I might finally get some ice time!"
Trotz: "I said to get your ass back in bed, Captain Healthy Scratch! NOW!"
(Jordan goes scampering back to his room, erratically blowing one of those stupid wooden train whistles as he goes)
Trotz: "To bed with the both of you, too"
Poile: "I am very disappointed in you both. We'll talk more in the morning."

(Trotz and Poile climb the stairs. The faint sound of Jordan Tootoo being slapped can be heard, then doors closing. The two forwards were left standing in the hall. Then Shea Weber emerged from a bedroom on that floor and walks into the kitchen down the hall from Radulov and Kostitzyn. The two walk into the kitchen and sit at the table. Weber is getting his beard a midnight snack)

Weber: "Heard Coach and GM tear you guys a new one. Was pretty stupid on your guys' part. Hope it was worth it."
Radulov: "Oh man, the beetches were"
(Radulov is cut short by a glare from Kostitzyn)
Kostitzyn: "I'm just going to keep my head down, keep my mouth shut, and let this thing play out"
Weber: "That's probably a good idea. You just better hope we don't win without you guys. Lose 2 games, go out partying and get caught? Then your team wins without you? You two would look so incredibly stupid if that happened"
(Ryan Suter's voice chimes in from nearby)
 Suter: "I just think the coach and GM have to make the tough decisions, and if rules are broken, I think we all have to expect to be held to the same standards. I know if it was me, I would expect that. All that is really left is for us as a team to make the improvements we need to make, adapt to new challenges, and play our game. If we do that, I think we can be successful"
Kostitzyn: "Wow, that sounded way more like what a captain would say; full of leadership and prof-" 

(Kostitzyn's head is slammed off a nearby sliding glass door by Weber, who nonchalantly walks off to his room. He stops and turns to Radulov and smiles as he makes mocking hip thrusting motions with his hands and hips. Radulov laughs)

Radulov: "Ho ho! 'ees funny because you make light of a serious situation in a completely unprofessional manner that makes you look like douchebag! Oh-hoooooooooooo...."

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