You could have been Martin Brodeur.
Actually you could have been Marty Brodeur, Keith Tkachuk, Bryan Smolinski, Felix Potvin, Doug Weight, Geoff Sanderson, Slava Kozlov, Alex Zhamnov, Sergei Zubov, some guy named Craig Conroy, Robert Lang, Peter Bondra, or Sergei Nemchinov, but you you could have been Marty Brodeur.
Instead, you were Trevor Kidd. Fletcher’s Mistake.
I think most people familiar with this atrocity of a hockey player might know the interwoven history between the two netminders here (keeping in mind that when I use the term "netminder" in reference to Trevor Kidd, it could not be applied in a looser term). You may know that your Calgary Flames, having not yet traded Doug Gilmour and under the impression that they were a championship caliber team for years to come, decided to take the 1990 Entry Draft off, and by what I can only assume was a roll of the dice or a game of Rock, Scissor, Paper or something, decided to use the 11th overall pick to select, EXCUSE ME I JUST THREW UP A LITTLE BIT IN MY MOUTH, Spokane Chiefs ‘tender Trevor Kidd.
They could have instead drafted this goofy French kid from Montreal who was snapped up by New Jersey only nine spots later and now has three Stanley Cups, two Olympic Gold Medals, a national best-selling book (we’re not fact checking this, are we?), a shady sexual history (we’re REALLY not fact checking this, are we?!?!?), and is not Trevor Kidd. You might even know that the Flames, in a move which leaves me somber and remorseful, struck with abdominal pain and a future hangover, actually TRADED UP with New Jersey to draft Kidd, even though by doing nothing they could have had Brodeur. As an added bonus, in trading away the rights for the goalie who now holds every important goalie record ever (he’s even scored as many goals as Hextall, man), the Flames also acquired a second round pick with which they used to pick Finnis Boy Wonder, Vesa Viitakoski (Same Great Name, 90% Less Talent!).
You might even be aware of the little known fact that one time Trevor Kidd murdered a puppy by throwing it at a guy who was trying to save a man diving in front of a speeding truck in an effort to save another puppy. That man was Martin Brodeur.
The experts all agree that pretty much any team at the time would have selected Kidd over who ended up being the greatest goaltender in the history of every cosmos ever where ice exists, but hindsight and a proceeding lifetime of shattered dreams and first round exits allows us to posture on just how stupid every one of those so-called experts were.
Being that this was back before the days where we knew drafting goalies in the first round was such a callow gambit, at first we were maybe impressed that the Flames landed a goalie prospect with as much potential as the former Canadian Olympian (one game counts right?). "Yes," we would say. "This is the future of goaltending for the Calgary Flames. This is the guy we’ll back while Mike Vernon is winning another Stanley Cup in Detroit." And so we became believers. We would bristle thoughtfully, wondering silently just how far this padded wonderkid could take us. He dazzled our hearts and minds before ever playing a game. It would go down in history as the last time we would ever be impressed with the exploits of Trevor Kidd.
An Era of Unprecedented Sadness
Things were still Good Times Dynomite for a little while in the early nineties. But it all took a hard left turn on suck right around the same time that Trevor Kidd was beginning to "establish" himself as the number one goalie in Cowtown. For example, in his first campaign as de-facto starting goalie, the NHL locked out it’s players, a dastardly feat that histroy has proven will never happen again. Tragic indeed, but surely the work stoppage was the result of several seemingly unfavourable factors in the labour agreement between the NHL and the PA, and cannot be directly attributed to the pride of Dugald, Manitoba, can it?
Oh you better believe it can.
You see, for economists everywhere agree that Kidd was the reason for the record low Canadian dollar, which affected the bottom line of such small market franchises like Calgary, Edmonton, and the now defunct Winnipeg Jets, who moved on to become a beacon of financial stability in Phoenix. The strife that followed the debate over how to manage these poorer teams created a rift between both parites, and the rest if history.
On the ice, things did not fair much better. For when the NHL put the unrest to bed, it was time to hit the ice again. And for the Calgary Flames, this meant that Trevor Kidd was once again their starting goalie. Even though Rick Tabaracci was better (not that that’s saying much).
Despite starting Trevor Kidd for 43 of 48 games in that lockout shortened season, Calgary squeaked into the playoffs and faced off against the not yet perennially disappointing San Jose Sharks. Where this happened:
That was in the playoffs. That was Craig Janney. That was Trevor Kidd, and that was unacceptable.
Never in my life have I seen such a profound and compact metaphor for Kidder’s entire tenure in Calgary: terribly positioned, not square, beaten by weak shots after committing too early to the shot. Against Craig Janney. (As an added bonus, we get a nice glimpse of just how terrible Tommy Albelin was as well)
Just knowing that we had to put up with this fraudulence for two more seasons and two playoff games makes me ill just thinking about it. I get a tremble, my face becomes flush, my knees shaky. I get this oncoming bout of anxiety bearing down on me, and it’s coming fast. Try as I might, I just can’t stop it. Just like Trevor Kidd.
Everything that followed was a disaster. A 66-78-20 record, some ridiculously flashy saves, the ludicrously soft goals, and the notoriety that comes from being the first misguided franchise ever to senselessly question whether or not "things will get better if we maybe try putting Dwayne Roloson in net".
But it never quite got better with Dwayne Roloson in net, did it?
It was the essence of Kidd. To be the number one guy who could easily be overshadowed by his backup. The people loved Rick Tabaracci for it (that and it’s fun to call a guy Tabby Cat). Roloson showed glimpses of being a number one (again, not saying a whole lot on a team that was one Derek Morris away from officially becoming the Young Guns). Even Andrei Trefilov had his chances with Kidd as the crease captain. Andrei Trefilov! That name itself is Russian for Trevor Kidd.
Consider that this was a guy who vehemently bemoaned his 1a-1b partnership with Tabaracci, and when Tabby was traded under the belief that Kidd would perform better without the direct competition, Trevor FLOPPED. Which made him cry and cry and cry even more, effectively forcing his own exodus from Calgary.
Armed with his open mouth and even more open five hole, Trevor Kidd, like a nightmare broken up by a distant alarm clock, found himself traded to the hockey hotbed of Raleigh, thus paving the way for a triumphant return to Calgary’s cage for Rick Tabaracci.
Seriously, when Tabaracci is your saviour, things had to have been inordinately bleak.
Mish Mash Of Hate
Given that Kidd spent a good portion of his career out of position and unable to find the middle of his net, it comes as no surprise to anyone that his facial hair always seemed to suffer the same fate. Come on dude, how do you not see that? It’s obvious you spend a good deal of time grooming your goat to make it look that way. How did no one ever buy this guy a ruler?
This exists. Or it did, but somehow never went away when the internet evolved into something more than cheap Geocities style personal websites. I was initially all giddy and juvenile when I found this page, because I’m somewhat of a fan of the shoddy and archaic fan pages that rules the internet landscape in the late 90’s. But the more and more I browsed, it became immediately obvious to me that this was no fan page. This was a Trevor Kidd page for Trevor Kidd BY Trevor Kidd. Or at least maintained under his permission. I found it so offensive that it probably beat Kidd high blocker side during the design implementation.
Seriously, if you get a change, peruse the entire site and try not to hate this guy. Some personal highlights for me:
- The crudely primitive Flash based games section, featuring "Shoot the Puck" where, and I’m dead serious, you’re a hockey player in a game against the Panthers. Florida is up 5-0 (which means you must be playing for the Blue Jackets), and you have to try and score on Trevor Kidd enough times before the clock runs down and win the game. Essentially you go to Trevor Kidd’s website for a chance to light up Trevor Kidd. And it’s as easy as it sounds. I won 10-5.
- The other game on the page is "Gear Up The Goalie", in which a picture of Trevor Kidd in his skivs, with a locker full of his equipment adjacent. Presumably it’s almost game time, and you have to dress Trevor Kidd before the clock runs out. I found this game frustrating, because I only managed to get one pad on his leg. Every other time I tried to pin a piece of equipment on him, it would say "try again" and put the gear back in the locker. Naturally, I lost, but it hit me shortly after what had happened: it was an unwinnable game. Trevor Kidd uses his equipment so scarcely to stop pucks that over time he forgot what piece goes where. It’s really a scenario of putting yourself in the mind of the main character of the game. Once you’ve lowered yourself to that level, everything else falls into place. Behind you. In the back of the net.
- The Player Tips section, where Trevor intends to impart his knowledge in tip form to would be hockey stars of the future. Featuring such helpful hints such as just kidding, that section is completely empty.
- And, for reasons unknown, this picture:
But The Worst Thing IS
Ok, it’s still this picture:
Let the Hate Flow Through You
Somebody gave Trevor Kidd a goaltending school in the late nineties. I know, I attended it one year and it took me probably a decade to get that "nineties goalie" stink off of me. That’s maybe the biggest lasting legacy of Trevor Kidd; he taught a bunch of local kids how to play goal The Trevor Kidd way, effectively ruining any shot of ever being a professional hockey player for literally hundreds of young Cowtown hopefuls.
If you’ve ever wondered why there is a disturbing lack of solid goaltending prospects from the Calgary area, this is why. He’s the hockey equivalent of Lyle Lanley, the guy who sold Springfield the shoddy Monorail system on the Simpsons. The only difference is Lanley got what was coming to him in the end, whileTrevor Kidd was traded away before an angry mob ever got to chase him out of town, a cavalcade of pitchforks and torches in tow.
My hope is that this edition of Two Minutes Hate helps ease the pain felt by Flames fans and young goaltenders alike, and guides us towards some kind of semblance of closure. Knowing, of course, that none of us will ever be happy until we get to collectively reach out and rip off the other half of that ridiculous goatee of his stupid jerk face.
It’s only Two Minutes Hate, Trevor Kidd, but a lifetime of scorn.