Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Joyce is "sorry people took offense", Plans to "drop me where I stand"

Ok, now this is getting good. Gare Joyce has responded to criticism taken on this blog. Here's his post which can also be read in the comments section on "Wow".

"I'm sorry that so many people took offence. I certainly didn't mean to kick those who live in Swift Current. But the fact remains, I didn't say that the team didn't do enough to honour Kruger, Ruff, Manteyka and Kresse--Fanner and Tisdale did. And when I tell people not from Swift Current that the four were honoured basically with a moment of silence--and that the board of directors just brushed off the idea of more of a ceremony or raising a banner--they are appalled. Fact is, it should have been an anniversary that the WHL marked--they first dropped the ball, then the team ownership. And fact is, Dean C wanted something more--the right thing--and it didn't happen. Too bad for Fanner, the families of the others, Tisdale and other team-mates.

As I said on the other blog, Brady said what others said, almost no dissent in the ranks of the team. Kids are cruel in high school and for the locals the best way to cut the Broncos down to size is take their swings. It can't be pleasant but I don't believe that it's uniques. It's almost certainly more true of small towns than cities--I went to school with Marlies (a Marlie captain sat beside me in class) and everyone gave him respect and space.

I think Dean's instincts were right about getting a banner and the rest. I wish he had pushed the board harder. I think he did a good job with his team and I'm glad to see that he got a vote of confidence. If the directors went into brain lock and gassed him, he'd get another job.

Fact is, many people in Swift want to live in the present because the past is so awful. The view in Swift Current isn't the view from elsewhere. When the McBains say that Graham James did a good job with the team in the wake of the crash--well, there's no saying that he did a job in one aspect with the team but just happened to molest players.

You know Mr Keen, you can attack the story but when you attack me--I don't fit in, I'm a snake, whatever--you're not helping your case. What exactly do I have wrong? Fanner feels like the team could have done more over the years, Bob Wilkie says that someone had to know about James, Sheldon Kennedy says the same, Tim Tisdale once coached in the arena on an anniversary that went unmarked--and I stood out like a sore thumb. What a joke. And you say you're going to get in my face--I'll drop you where you stand. Don Cherry took issue for me--yeah, he defended Phil Esposito when he told a woman reporter to fellate him. I've been doing this since you had your baby teeth.

Gare, Gare, Gare....don't kid yourself. First of all, if you think me saying "I'll take issue with him when I see him at the draft " (see "Wow" below) is a threat of physical harm then you're even better at jumping to conclusions than I thought you were. Congratulations, you've now misquoted me too. Who's the veteran scribe now eh? I would love to sit down and tell you about the pain and embarrassment you've caused this city with your article and I know in turn you would like to tell me more of your side too. If you're not ok with that, go ahead, take a run at my "baby teeth", Just because you wrote a book on the "Punch Up in Piestany" it doesn't make you the league heavyweight.

Many people think you may have come in under false pretenses. Do you think the team and the organization would have gave you an all-access pass (which they did and you know it) if they knew the route you were headed with your feature piece? I'm sure most thought (as did I) you were in town to recap the events of a terrible tragedy to hit a small community 20 years ago. But of course a feel-good fluffer like that wouldn't make the headlines right? You've managed to anger an entire community, a loyal fanbase, and the Broncos organization to what appears like trying to get headlines for personal gain.

I was maybe taught a lesson here too, a lesson on trust. We put you on the air (December 30th) and you said nothing of the angle you were planning. We promoted you, the article and it's upcoming release at espn.com. So I guess I shouldn't trust everybody. Next time I guess. What would a local yocal small-time radio announcer for a small market CHL team know anyways? You managed to pull the wool over everyone's eyes, even me...you should feel good about yourself.

Had you been up-front with the people, the team....me, no doubt that would have jeopardized getting to the real dirt you so desperately seeked. So I understand the veil of secrecy.

Broncos Hockey and this City is more than about Graham James, more than about a sad time back in late '86 early '87, more than about what you have made it out to be. There are lots of great things you've conveniently overlooked. Where did it go? Nowhere Gare, it's right here...here, in a small southwest Saskatchewan City who loves the game; has passion, loyalty,trust, feelings, How could a veteran reporter like yourself miss that?

See you in Columbus Mr. Joyce.


Anonymous said...

I love all of the drama that ALWAYS seems to hang over the Broncos. You know what. Could something more have been done? SURE. Tisdale could have showed up to honor his teammates, Kennedy could come by once in a while to HONOR his teammates, instead of digging up old issues. You know, the old regime of staff is gone and I am sure the new ones feel just horrible about the history and what happened to Sheldon, but why does the new staff have to take it on the chin ALL OF THE TIME?? They can't seem to ever do anything right. Sakic couldn't be there because he was busy making millions playing as a pro, but how about a letter to the families?, the team, the CITY ? Yeah, maybe team could have had an all out marketing event which then we would be reading how "the marketing staff turned this into a means to sell tickets for a struggling team". It never seems to end with one thing or another. The fans COULD have sold out the rink on their own (I went) to support the anniversary. I think the fact that it is remembered with a moment of silence pays homage to the fallen players, while not digging up old wounds of a tragic event. To think someone mentioned that a family member could have done a "puck drop"! why? I would not want to be brought out in front of everyone again to be shown that I lost my family member tragically 20 years ago. I hopefully have moved on and found some peace in the fact that the are in amuch better place then we are right now. Maybe i'm wrong. Hats off to guys like big Ern who stick by the team through it all. Here is a guy that quite simply likes to watch hockey and be part of something exciting. Not sit there and judge the coach, the players, the team, the city, the building, the expansion, the ticket prices, the win/loss record, etc. etc etc. Anyone with the balls to get invloved...go to the annual meetings and find out how to get on the board (it does not pay money by the way) and lobby your ass off to get a spot on there. I bet some of those guys would love a break !It never seems to end. But hey, at least I have yet to see a negative post about the 2 new Hall of Fame inductees. Of course, has anyone spoke with Tisdale or Kennedy yet?

Jon Keen said...

Remember when Fanner was honored before the game a few years back when the Broncos unveiled those special Four Broncos commemorative sweaters?

That was a special night. A long, standing ovation for that pre-game ceremony. That was fantastic.

Does anyone else remember that? It's been left out of this debate.

dave said...

I remember that, I was hopeing the Broncos had a picture on the website, from that night. Maybe Brad could dig one up and repost it, to shoot down another twist from the article.

Regan and the Rockets said...

Keener good article. I like the physical threats from this guy! What's that all about?
What does that really tell you about the individual who wrote this article?
Question answered.
Like you said, he came into Swift Current with deception on his mind from the get-go.
If he wasn't upfront with the Broncos on his intent for the article, how upfront or factual are some of the comments in this article?

Jon Keen said...

Regan, I thought the exact same thing. I think he's showing his true colors here, at least his cards anyways.

For those of you wh0 don't know already, Regan has addressed the issue over at www.reganbartel.blogspot.com. He has a great take on this.

Anonymous said...

Hey, at at least you can say he stood up for Dean ! not many can say that ! By the way , has he renewed yet? If so, what's Hunchak going to do? Any thoughts Keener?

Gare Joyce said...

My record speaks for itself -- all the people (outside of SC) who have issue with me over whatever I've written over 20 plus years could ride on the same bicycle. Again, where are the mistakes in my story? Oh, sorry, there aren't any. Please ask Tim Tisdale and Fanner--and Bob Wilkie and Sheldon Kennedy--if they think the team has done enough over the years to honour the four Broncos. (Fanner never mentioned that she was honoured at a game ... she told me that she hadn't been at a game since the twins finished their jr carrers.) And as far as you taking it up with me at the draft--how would I know that someone who attacks me personally (rather than pointing out errors in my story) was intending to civilize debate? You knock me because the story is bullet-proof--just keep in mind that Tisdale, Fanner, Leo, Wilkie, Kennedy and various legal records had far more damining things to say about the team than I did. And fact is, the worst things that were said--maybe less about the team than the mindset in the community--came out of its pillars, the McBains. And the fact is, I'll spot you 20 years--no chice, I have to--but a bowl of pudding like yourself doesn't make me shudder. I hope the curb is soft wherever you plan to take this up with me, cowboy.

Jon Keen said...


You really are a piece of work, are you kiddin' me? First of all, how did I attack you personally? By agreeing with a poster that I got an uncomfortable feeling around you? That's a stretch. But then again you ARE good at that.

I think you're upset because us smalltown folks are running your show. Big time. It's amatuer night in your eyes and you're the one looking like the smalltown country bumpkin. Again, who are you trying to convince, us or yourself?

ESPN must be ashamed to have you as a staffer after you talk this way. If you had any credibility before, you've no doubt lost it by the way you've conducted yourself on this blog.

See you in Columbus....Mr. Joyce.

Gare Joyce said...


Gare Joyce said...

and of course, no mistakes cited

Anonymous said...

Gare Joyce = lunatic.

You're right Jon, his company should be ashamed. Joyce appears to be a real skitso.

Anonymous said...

Let's just get this out in the open, Mr.Joyce..you are lucky Scoof isn't still around, he'd be driving down to "talk" to you after reading the first 3 words, you're an as*hole for even thinking of writing an article bashing to way we remember the boys, maybe if you weren't so closed minded and set on your own rep you'd actually try and dig a bit deeper and find out all the things people did on that day and every december 30th since the crash. our fanbase is strong, and there are ways to remember the guys without making a big deal out of it, thats the way we are, at least we're not closed minded like you. ESPN and you should be ashamed. no one wants to hear you're whiney pathetic articles anymore so just quit, drop it buddy, you're career should just be over..

here read this, cowboy


maybe start bringing along a tape recorder or maybe a piece of paper..try and get quotes right there Gare..

-a loyal fan, there's no doubt in that-

Jon Keen said...

Yes, I may be 20 years younger but it appears you're the one with all the growing up to do.

Keep making a fool of yourself. The blog hits have been through the roof.

Anonymous said...

This is getting a little childish. Two grown men fighting over the internet. You guys are making this about yourselves. I realize this is your blog Jon. But this is sad.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the Bronocs organizaiton would have welcomed you in like they did (at the games, did you buy a ticket??) on the team bus, in the dressing room, everywhere basically, all access pass ( which they don't even give local media who try annd PROMOTE the team). I wonder if they would have done all that for you if they new your were only there to slap them in the face? Gare.....don't they pay you enough to write REAL stories, or are you one of those reporters that revisits and rehashes the past, trying to dig up dirt and point fingers, wait, arent they called tabloid reporters?? Why not include some things like the support that the business community DOES give the team every year. Or the fact that, by population, we have one of the biggest season ticket holder bases in the WHL, OR how comptettive this SMALL TOWN team has actually been over the years, what about the fact that not ALL wHL teams induct former players into a Hall of Fame. Even Tisdale, Kennedy and Sakic are most likely headed to THAT hall ! or....I could go on, but then again, no one is paying ME to write for you ! Get some insight for yourself. "trembles"? Grow up.

Jessica said...

It seems to me Gare Joyce is countering criticisms of his article by throwing personal attacks, which is just silly.
After reading the article, as well as both Jon and Ryan's respective blogs, and the comments which followed, I find myself feeling sympathetic for the residents of Swift Current.

A comment on Switzer's blog from Joyce said "The story is right but you're unhappy with it."

And why shouldn't the people of SC be unhappy with an article that, while I assume is factual, depicts the community in a negative light? Obviously (or rather, hopefully), as a journalist, Mr. Joyce isn't going to write anything false or made-up, but writing is all about the tone in which something is said. Anyone who has read the article has read between the lines, picking up on the negative and borderline-condescending tone. It may as well have simply said "Swift Current, for shame."

As both a journalist, and a new resident of Swift Current, I was saddened by the article. When a small city gets little media coverage and is given the opportunity to be featured in an ESPN article, it is an exciting event. To have that article turned around to depict only the negatives of a town and omit the positives is disheartenning to say the least. I was taught to show both sides of every issue.

I read the article before knowing what had been done to welcome Mr. Joyce to the community, and I could only assume by the tone of the article that the team had done nothing but cry to him about the horrors of life in the WHL and that everyone else he had spoken with had been spat on by the community at every turn. It was surprising to me, especially knowing the pride SC takes in its team, and how welcoming everyone is by nature.

So, I suppose I've taken enough of everyone's time with this comment, but I would like to say one last thing about the recent blogging behaviour of someone who everyone refers to as a professional: For shame, Mr. Joyce.

Gare Joyce said...

keep citing the mistakes -- oh I forgot, there are none

what am i suppose to do? sit here in silence and suffer shots at my character from people who know nothing about me? if you criticized my story, i can respond in kind, but if you criticize me--what i write but me as a person--then it's a whole different story

i'd say that you have gone ad hominem but i'd be here all day trying to explain

thanks for giving voice the late mr kruger, I'm sure you can get on your crystal ball and communicate his indignation. while you have him on the line ask him how he feels about the moment of silence. i will put on my headgear in anticipation of him hooking me from his celestial abode

funny, the only people who ever thought they were misquoted were Phil Kessel (whose quotes were in fact quoted and recorded) and the folks of Swift Current ... 20 years and all of a sudden I'm a fiction writer ... funny

have you hockey-loving folks been talking to Kennedy or Wilkie lately? i didn't think so

mistakes? none

regards, etc

Joel Siemens said...

Hey Gare answer one question. What does Graham James have to do with the anniversary of the bus crash? NOTHING. Yeah great way to bring that up again. Yeah that must have been tough for you. Lets tell the story the whole world knows. You say there wasnt enough done. What did you want the Broncos to do? Parade people around? That would have been classless. The orgainization does have something planned for inside the rink. But they could not do it this year as the city is in the middle of the expansion. Every Bronco knows why they wear the four leaf clover on their shoulder. And a few years back we our first special edition jersey was done in honour of that. The crest was the four leaf clover.

Your are some piece of work


Gare Joyce said...


as a member of the working media i don't need a ticket ... i have a pass from the chl .. it was given me on the strength of all the writing i have done about junior hockey over the years

and MY "personal attacks"? who is the "snake" here? i'm not going to cite all the epithets thrown around

like i say, show me where i'm wrong, cite the mistakes

you'll have sores on your butts if you sit at the computer too long trying to find them -- and i say that with all due respect

thanks for your interest

Jon Keen said...


Your e-mail address please. I would like to keep some comments between you and me. I've been talking to some of the local people in your article.

Send it to jonkeen@hotmail.com


ernie said...

What you should do Gare? Maybe you should hide under the big Toronto-man's fur cap you had on when you were here....and not come out for a while. You're ridiculous. You act completely childish. Are you really an award-winning author??!!?? AMAZING! You're acting like a 13-year old!

Anonymous said...

Wallby said ...

Shutout over Gare.
In the 86/87 playoffs we lost to the Prince Albert Raiders not Medicine Hat.
Medicine Hat and Saskatoon received first round byes.
I was on the fan bus that went up to Prince Albert the only time I have ever been in their rink.
I remember the final game of the series in Swift Current as the seconds ticked down the P.A. Raider players on the bench were banging there sticks against the boards in admiration of what we had accomplished after all the adversity we had been through that year.

ointhecreek said...

"My record speaks for itself -- all the people (outside of SC) who have issue with me over whatever I've written over 20 plus years could ride on the same bicycle." Maybe that's because nobody can send you an e-mail because there is none published. Imagine that! Check around the league, Mr. Joyce, talk to the fans in the WHL. I don't think you will find anyone that agrees with you. Check some of the fan forums, they all have the same opinion of your article-it's garbage and you went about getting it under false pretenses. You are an ass sir, we all agree.

Anonymous said...

In response to having a "CHL" pass, don't even tell me you got it from YEARS of great writing. NEW reporters to the league get them as well. Maybe it's time to hand yours in!

Anonymous said...

This whole ordeal is extremely frustrating. I'm not sure which upsets me more, the points you, Mr. Joyce, made in his original article, or the fact that you're sheepishly pointing your finger at everyone else now that the article is published. I was born and raised in Swift Current, I know many of the people addressed in this article, and I, my friend, am appalled at the way you've described some of them. Gord Hahn for instance, who gives you the right, Mr. Joyce, to refer to Mr. Hahn as a world-weary, sad-faced man? You don't know anything about that exuberant, friendly, man who's served our city for so many years. I'd like to know the tone in which you were speaking with Mr. Hahn. Were you joking around at the time of the interview and then took the comedy out of it when publishing your story? I'm extremely sadened by your story... Oh, I'm sorry, I guess I couldn't be, being that I've spent my whole life in Swift, I don't have feelings. (That was a joke... just so we're clear.) I just hope it was worth it for you, Mr. Joyce, the money I mean. I sure hope infuriating a whole city, and tainting our image was worth it to you. Shame on you for twisting your stories and fooling a whole city. Shame on you!

Anonymous said...

Oh my God. I'm not sure Mr. Gare, if you interviewed the right people. If I did a story on you, would I pick Ryan Switzer, Jon Keen, Someone else from Swift Current and your mother? No, I would pick some people that like you and have respect for you. It was quite clear what your intent was with the story. Just because some crusty old men and some players with bad history here have nothing good to bring to the Bronco table, that does not give you any right to blast the city. You are no better then those who put on the lack luster memorial. What good did you bring this town that you think is in such dispare? None. You are a very bad person. Who would do something like that? Clearly some bad days have come to Swift Current, but you do not help the cause with your poison and filth, I hope ESPN does the right thing here. We don't need dick heads screwing up our beloved sport.


Jeff said...

Mr. Joyce,

Just because there aren't any mistakes (which you seem so very proud of), it doesn't mean that the story isn't a piece of fluff journalism that isn't worth the virtual ink it's printed with. The fact remains that you presented what the Board did without asking the Board why. Don't you think that's important? Perhaps they would have told you (a little birdie told me) that they felt that 20 years wasn't much different an anniversary than 10 or any other year in between - that they felt that 25 years was a much more important anniversary to consider and deal with properly.

Or perhaps people take issue with the fact that you presented yourself as being in town to write a touching memorial to the tragedy that was and is the bus crash. And now, have written no such piece. You have caused much of the headaches and backlash you received because you weren't honest with a city of people that prides itself on the same.

I live in Swift Current but I'm not from here. I feel that your article did not do the city or this history justice in many ways. As Ryan Switzer and Jon Keen have pointed to - there are a lot of good things here that you out and out ignored in your article.

Pat from regina said...

Keener, You want the boys from BuckHorn Bay-long-weekend-in-May to come with you to Columbus? It would be interesting to see what the boy with the weird name does when he gets a taste of Old Fashion Saskatchewan Ass-Whoopin. I know that is not what you have in mind. but where I come from it sounds like the dummy challenged you with the "drop you where you stand" line.

Oh yeah Gare (I can't get over that stupid name)get your proof-reader to check your spelling before posting. I know we are hillbillies in your eyes, but dernitwe were dun learned that reedin an ritin stuff.
Didn't Don Cherry have a problem with Gare (that name again) a few years ago? I would still like to know what Grapes thinks of all this.

Jon Keen said...


Haha, thanks for the offer. Believe me you're not the first one to offer up support. Who knows, maybe there will be a fan bus headed to Columbus in June! It's not required. I'll be fine.

The whole physical threats angle have provided a lot of entertainment around town and on the Eagle morning show. Everytime I'm working-out someone always laughs and asks if I'm getting ready for Columbus. Then I crank the "eye of the tiger" on my Ipod..haha, joking.

Yeah Cherry did take issue with Joyce awhile back. I'm not completely sure on the issue. It had something to do with international hockey. Maybe Gare can fill us in?

Check Switzer's blog, the "show-running" continues on a daily basis.

So is the May long plan in place? Let me know what's up?

Pats season over eh? Tigers are a helluva team. They can outright skate.