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Why the Mississauga St. Mike's Majors Are So Boring to Watch

By JEFF BLAY
In the O Blogger 

After taking in the many murmurs, the comments on twitter, and the first-hand experience of viewing two Majors games last week, I thought of this blog, and I hope it doesn't come to the surprise of anyone when I say the Mississauga Majors are probably the most boring team to watch in the OHL. This is really unfortunate as they just happen to be the hosts of this year's Memorial Cup. Why are they so boring? Let me explain...

The Majors play a really tight, defensive style of hockey under head coach Dave Cameron. They tend to clog up the neutral zone with four players while one trails a bit further behind in the defensive end. Their fore-check is very safe, usually sending just one man deep until they gain possession. Although this is an effective defensive strategy, it can make for some really boring, low action hockey. Since they don't play an aggressive fore-check, once they are ahead on the scoreboard, they will usually tighten up defensively even more. When they are playing other top-seeding teams, they games usually end up at a very low score. The Majors do play successful hockey, and many teams in the NHL play a similar game, but it's just not my kind of hockey. The division-leading penalty minutes may be the only good thing about them, as they do throw down the mitts quite often. They have a plethora of great offensive talent, which shows while playing weaker teams, but when they stick to their heavy traffic neutral zone play, it's hard to watch. 

A recent comment I received from a colleague and certain radio announcer sums it up quite well: "If you're an insomniac, the Mississauga Majors are you're cure." 
Probably at a Mississauga Majors game...

I never find their victories to be that exciting... Let me give some examples of teams and games that will make the fans happy, and make for interesting hockey to watch. 

The Guelph Storm lost to the Owen Sound Attack on Friday night by a score of 4-3 in  overtime. Both teams play a crash and bang, offensive game, both with lots of defenders who like to jump up into the play. 

Guelph started off with two quick goals in the first, while each team played a physical game coming up with some big hits to finish the period. 
The second was all Guelph's once again, but Owen Sound set the physical tone with some big hits and Andrew Shaw took on Peter Holland in a brief but spirited tilt. Liam Heelis then dropped the gloves with Chris Van Laren and Heelis pounded Van Laren in a toe-to-toe punching frenzy. Although the period was scoreless, there was lots of action, lots of high-risk plays with forwards getting into those high-risk areas, and lots of bad blood brewing. 
The third period went back and forth for the first 15 minutes, before Owen Sound began to show why they are one of the top teams in the OHL. Beginning at the 17:12 mark and ending at the 19:02 mark, Owen Sound came back and scored three quick goals to tie the game up. Garret Wilson, the beauty captain that he is, started  things off with a tip in for his 19th of the season, and his team followed suit. 

The game goes into OT and Owen Sound finished the Storm off as Joey Hishon sets up a beautiful goal to pick up his third assist of the night and lead the Attack's comeback - that's a game. The IceDogs defeat Saginaw (5th in the Country) 5-4 in a fast-paced, high-scoring thriller - that's a game. Getting a narrow lead and sitting on it with careful defense and no edge to score - that's a bore, and I'm sure that's a contributing factor to their poor attendance records.

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