In the last couple of seasons, the Saskatchewan Shockers have earned a reputation as a young team with promise that can’t quite get over the hump. And since the SHL’s beginning, Shockers owner Heinz Doofenshmirtz has had a reputation as an… unconventional thinker. Those two narratives intersected this week, as Doofenshmirtz reportedly resorted to mind-control techniques in order to improve his team’s play.
“We’ve seen some weird stuff around here,” said longtime Saskatchewan D Chris “Lightning” Oflyng, “but this one probably takes the cake.”
Apparently, Doofenshmirtz dreamed up his latest idea when he read an article about a baseball team bringing in a motivational speaker to inspire the players with the power of positive thinking. According to sources in the Shockers front office, Doofenshmirtz felt that such a tactic might help his club take the next step.
Rather than hiring an actual motivational speaker, however, the owner decided to do the motivating himself. Last week, Shockers coach Morris Thompson arrived at the arena to find a package in his office. It contained a pair of videotapes, with a note from the owner instructing Thompson to play them for the team before the morning skate.
Thompson did as he was asked (although he had to find a VCR first). He gathered the players in the locker room and played the first tape. This consisted of a continuous loop of Doofenshmirtz’s spinning, sunglasses-clad head chanting “My name is Doof and you’ll do what I say. Whoop whoop!” over and over.
The players watched in stunned silence for about a minute before Thompson ejected the tape. “I figured he probably gave me the wrong tape,” the coach said. “Although why he’d want one like that, I don’t know.”
The second tape featured the owner in cowboy garb, singing a country-western song. This seemed more promising, although on closer inspection the song contained lyrics such as “You’ll be my obedient mindless slaves, and nobody will blame me/ Because you’ll yodel-odel-odel-odel-obey me.”
This time, several players got annoyed, and Thompson stopped the tape. He promptly informed GM Cooper Mathews that if the owner ever provided tapes like that again, Thompson would resign.
“It felt to a lot of the guys like he was trying to hypnotize us or something, and that’s not cool,” said Oflyng.
“That song was horrible,” added C Elliott Rafferty. “I mean, it was catchy, but the lyrics were way too on the nose.”
Matthews apologized to the team, and made clear that the idea was Doofenshmirtz’s alone. “At the end of the day, he wants us to win, and that’s what we all want,” the GM said. “But I don’t think that’s the best way to go about it.”
“Come on, what’s the big deal?” Doofenshmirtz said to reporters. “People pay good money to go on stage and have a hypnotist make them bark like a dog or act like a chicken or whatever. I was just trying to brainwash my guys a little into playing good hockey, that’s all. It’s not like I was trying to make them my minions in some plot to take over the world or anything. I mean, who would even think of that?”