TLN Roundtable: Our Staff Takes Magic Pills



The NHL Draft is nearly upon us, but before any names are called out in Florida later this, the 2015 draft class will first assemble in Buffalo for the Combine. They will be poked, prodded, VO2’d and puked. Then a sports psychologist will play mind games with these teenagers and offer them drugs.

Well, ok. Not real drugs. Actually, it’s a completely hypothetical situation.

I’m talking about the “Magic Pill” question – the one in which a player is offered a pill that will guarantee them a Calder Trophy, a Stanley Cup, and a fat endorsement deal. The catch? There’s a 50/50 chance you will die when you turn 30 years old. I guess it’s supposed to measure dedication to the game or something, but actually it’s just really, really stupid.

Honestly, why is this question being asked of teenagers? They should save these types of questions for people in their, like 20s or 30s I guess? What trying to say is… here’s another TLN Roundtable. Today we asked our TLN staff if they’d take the Magic Pill, and their answers may surprise you. 

(Also, we need mandatory staff drug testing, like, yesterday.)

Shawn Reis

This is a great question because it helps teams understand whether or not someone they might be drafting would prefer to a) live a long and happy life or b) die at age 30 in exchange for being rich and successful for a few years.  In my opinion this is a very appropriate question to be asking human beings that still need their parent’s signature to go on a field trip because it will make them really uncomfortable and unsure of themselves which is what you need to figure out if someone you might be drafting has enough swagger.  

I applaud this question because now teams can re-sort their draft lists to properly reflect the players that would prefer to die at age 30 so that they can make their bosses really happy.  In the NHL this is a useful skill to have because it proves you are a winner which is more important than being good at hockey (which I’m not).  In my opinion these new advanced stats that take you inside the mind of a player are a great addition and will help teams figure out who wants to be great and who wants to live.  

For this reason I have decided to take the pill because I am confident and mentally tough.   I think if you don’t take the pill you are only proving that you can’t control your emotions and that you have no intestinal fortitude.

Justin Fisher

I’ll pass on the magic pill, thanks. You don’t become a real success in the National Hockey League by taking a pill and going along for the ride. You want to be a winner? Be a hard worker and a Canadian – I am all of the above, so I’m set. 

Besides, those pills look to have all kinds of unexpected side effects. Patrick Kane took a whole handful of those things and look at him now – he’s won a Calder, a Stanley Cup, and he’s creeping everybody out. Maybe you should of negotiated an Olympic gold medal too, huh Kaner? Good luck in four years.

Cat Silverman

Let’s be honest. I covered the Coyotes last season – if they held the third overall pick and I was a top five prospect, I’d take that pill, win my cup, get my money, and hope to die before the club I loved relocated to Quebec City.

Then again, this is Toronto. My mother isn’t even old enough to have lived through a Leafs championship… hell, if I’m a top ten prospect, I take that pill. Have you seen Henrik Lundqvist lately? Dude has perfected the ‘God, how much longer will it take to atone for playing at MSG?’ face to a T.

We can’t all be Ray Bourque. Take the pill, kids.

Jon Steitzer

As someone strictly against big pharma I would not take the pill unless it was a herbal supplement made from dandelion pollen and nirnroot. Though in that case it wouldn’t kill me because mother gaia’s natural wonders would never harm her children.

Ryan Fancey

First off, I don’t know why the Calder Trophy is included in this question. Seems odd alongside the Cup and boatloads of cash. Anyway, yes I’ll take the pill. I get all the glory of a Cup ring, set up my family for life, then take a coin-flip on going on past thirty, and anyone who knows me realizes I’m awesome at calling coin-flips. Throw in a gold medal at the Olympics and I’ll take two.

  • silentbob

    I’d gladly draft or trade an equivalent draft pick to acquire the kid that answers “I’m going to get all three, and more, without the pill – thanks, but no thanks!”

  • Gary Empey

    Did you say “There’s a 50/50 chance you will die when you turn 30 years old.”

    I can think of a few players with big long term contracts no longer producing. (Alexander Semin comes to mind)
    Are their GM’s hoping they had taken that magic pill?