...after the Kamloops Blazers ban The Kamloops Daily News sports editor from their building after the team asked him to write "more favourably" about the team.
The issue was first brought up in a January 2 column posted by Drinnan.
The Blazers did not make any players or coaches available to speak with The Daily News for a second straight game. This is in violation of WHL rules, but is a policy the organization put in place on Dec. 22, citing in a letter to the newspaper “ongoing negative reporting.” A team spokesman has said this policy will be in place “until further notice.”
The December 22 piece in question features the following lead paragraph.
The Kamloops Blazers’ season, to quote one-time linemates Simon and Garfunkel, appears as though it may be slip sliding away.and this:
As the WHL team’s players headed home Sunday for tobogganing, Facebooking and other Christmas season fun, they had lost four straight games and tumbled into last place in the 10-team Western Conference.
[Blazers GM Craig] Bonner likes the youth on his roster and is prepared to await the arrival of more young players, all of which is part of the five-year plan he drew up when he moved into the GM’s office prior to the 2008-09 season.Stories courtesy of 'Taking Note'
But when you look around the stands at Interior Savings Centre you have to wonder if it matters what he does, if anything.
The Blazers have been a big part of this community since they arrived, as the Kamloops Jr. Oilers, over the summer of 1981. But, as time goes on, they are playing a smaller and smaller role, to the point where they now are averaging 4,014 fans per game, down 262 from the same point last season and down 773 — that works out to 27,828 over the course of a season — since Vancouver-based businessman Tom Gaglardi, along with NHLers Shane Doan, Jarome Iginla, Mark Recchi and Darryl Sydor, all of them ex-Blazers, purchased the team over the summer of 2007.
This is an interesting turn of events to say the least. Stay tuned on this one.