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Catching up with the Winnipeg Jets' as they clean out their lockers for the summer.
SCENE: MTS Centre early Sunday morning. Winnipeg Jets players arrive one by one to solemnly clear out their lockers at years end. While players continue to file in, head coach Claude Noel stands in the middle of the room, greeted by a throng of media to get his final summation of the team's first regular season in Winnipeg.
GARY LAWLESS: Claude! So good to see you again! It's me, Gary! I know that you must be disappointed that you didn't finish your season off with a win in front of your home crowd... I mean... you must be disappointed.... it's a very disappointing feeling... I know that I would be disappointed if I were in your position... Can you comment a bit on your disappointment and where it ranks?
CLAUDE NOEL: Well... I - uh.... [cut off suddenly by a phone ringing]
LAWLESS: Sorry Claude, I have to get this. Hello! What? How did that happen? When did that happen? How much of it?! [frustrated.] Urgh, I'll be right there. Sorry Claude I have to go, someone took a bite of my lunch. I have been looking forward to it since pre-brunch brunch! Do you have any idea how disappointing this is!? I gotta go!
PAUL FRIESEN: Claude, let's make no bones about it, your team was pretty awful this year. I mean, even when you were winning, you still sucked. All in all this was a terrible season for the team. Your thoughts?
NOEL: Well, we had a very trying year. Obviously we had our ups and downs and, even though I wanted to take out my frustrations by murdering every one of these players, I was very pleased with our no quit attitude. What I realized a little too far down the line is that our guys really picked up their play after I started pulling a knife on them during intermissions these past three games. It takes a lot of resiliency to go out and compete after someone threatens your life.
ED TAIT: Coach, would you say that this seasons end result is more similar to a kick in the groin or a bullet between the eyes?
NOEL: Uh, well, I guess you could say it was a kick to the groin.
TAIT: No one ever picks the bullet....... [scribbles furious hyperbole into his notepad.]
Suddenly Dustin Byfuglien stumbles into the dressing room dawned in a nautical themed outfit and captains hat.
DUSTIN BYFUGLIEN: Alright, lets get this over with, I have a date with the open sea!
EVANDER KANE: Where are you going dressed like that, Gilligan?
BYFUGLIEN: I thought about going for a relaxing all-inclusive Caribbean cruise but I've decided that nothing quite compares to summer nights spent on the lakes of Minnesota. You want to come?
KANE: Sorry man, I've got some clubs to hit and new restaurants to try. I hear they opened up this new BBQ steakhouse that comps your meal if it isn't served within twenty minutes of your order. Man, I can't wait to check it out!
BYFUGLIEN: Your loss man.
RANDY JONES: [eagerly.] I'll come with you Buff!
BYFUGLIEN: Yeah, sorry... it was an expiring offer. Maybe next year though!
JONES: Awww. Sure thing Buff!
BYFUGLIEN: [under his breath.] Haha, sucker! You won't even be around next year!
JONES: What was that?
BYFUGLIEN: Oh nothing, I gotta bounce though! Yo squeak!
TIM STAPLETON: Yeah Buff?
BYFUGLIEN: Pack up my gear for me, I'm rollin' out! [flashing his trademark smirk.]
STAPLETON: You're the King Buff! [Stapleton begins packing up Byfuglien's gear.]
Captain Andrew Ladd sits in his locker stall watching old game film on his iPad.
ANDREW LADD: Ha! They called that a penalty!? Get real.
BLAKE WHEELER: Lemme see that.
LADD: See, right there! They called another offensive zone penalty on me. Unbelievable!
WHEELER: Yeah, Laddy..... You see where he takes the puck away from you and you sort of, well, slash him then hold him?
WHEELER: Yeah, they call that slashing... and holding... You can't do that. Those are both penalties.
LADD: Really? Oh shit.
WHEELER: But don't worry man, I take tons of penalties too and no one gets on my case!
WHEELER: I'm not really sure myself. It might be my handsome good looks. It might be because people think I'm a character after I called Sara Orlesky "man". Or it might be because people take pity on me because I sometimes look like Bambi on ice. It's a mystery man, but some how, I come out a big winner!
Tobias Enstrom finally enters the locker room, half an hour after he was supposed to arrive rocking a stylish beanie and stunna shades.
NOEL: Toby! You're thirty minutes late! Where the hell were you!?
TOBIAS ENSTROM: Sorry coach, Nicklas Backstrom and I went to a Wyclef Jean concert.
NOEL: Wyclef who? Back in my day we listened to good artists like Roy Orbison and Buddy Holly!
ENSTROM: Coach, you need to relax. The season is over. You're going to have an aneurism with all that pent up anger. Here, I have just the thing to mellow you out.
[Enstrom strolls over to the boom box and after a few moments of fiddling pumps up Levels by Aviici.]
ENSTROM: There you go coach! Chill!
NOEL: [developing an eye twitch] That song... That terrible, terrible song! Before and after every game, THAT song! I lay awake at night grieving over losses and THAT song fills the void in my head.... Wait, what is this feeling swelling up inside of me? Oh god, it feelis like emotion! But , I haven't emoted since my days as a Toledo Goaldigger in the IHL. Surely, it couldn't be... aww hell... THAT'S IT! I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE!!!
[Noel breaks away from the group of reporters, pulls a knife from his sock and seeks out Enstrom.]
ENSTROM: [terrified] Coach!? Coach!? Put.... put the knife down.... I'm sorry... I... [Enstrom turns and sprints out the locker room doors followed in tow by Noel.]
[Mark Stuart and Jim Slater are sitting side-by-side in their locker stalls watching Noel hunt down Enstrom.]
MARK STUART: Good season?
JIM SLATER: Good season.
[The two fist bump.]