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A blogger takes the Maple Leafs to The People's Court

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The following is a transcript of an almost true episode of America's favorite reality court show, The People's Court.

The People's Court
The People's Court
Pool/Getty Images

[scene] - This episode opens with typical intro music and a quick shot of the courtroom, taped in studio in Stamford, Connecticut.  A voiceover cuts in to introduce the plaintiff to the viewer, with information on where he comes from and what his case concerns. At this point, the camera cuts to the back of the courtroom, where a late-20 something male with average height and build enters the room.

Voiceover: David Danforth is a part-time blogger who hails from Toronto.  David has been a fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs since he was a small boy. Recently, David has experienced issues with alcohol and difficulty sleeping.  He believes this is caused by stress stemming from the continued moribund existence of his favorite sports team.  David states that he entered into a verbal agreement with the Maple Leafs organization to offer time and money. In return, the team would strive to compile a squad capable of post-season success.  He is suing for $5000.00.

[scene]: Plaintiff takes his place at his podium. The camera then cuts again to the back of the room as the defendant enters.  He's 48 and wears a finely tailored suit.

Voiceover: Dave Nonis is the soon-to-be-ex General Manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs. He was hired by another ex-General Manager in November 2008, and has since become the focus of much discontent from the fans.  Lately, hackers keep replacing his picture on the team's website with a photo of a pig with shit on its balls.  Mr. Nonis argues that, although they took his money and time, the team never entered into an agreement with the plaintiff.  Additionally, Mr. Nonis argues that if corporations were held accountable for all the times they disappointed customers, their profits would be limited to just hundreds of millions.

[scene]: Judge Marilyn Milian enters the courtroom and proceeds to sit down at the bench.

Judge Milian: Court is now in session.  Mr. Danforth, you claim that you entered into a verbal agreement with Mr. Nonis' company, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, to provide time and money. In return, you were promised at least a small amount of on-ice success, including trips to the post-season.

Mr. Nonis: Sorry to interject your honor, but we only promise that to season-ticket holders. Just to clarify.

Judge Milian: MR. NONIS, YOU WILL REFRAIN FROM SPEAKING UNTIL YOUR TURN, IS THAT UNDERSTOOD?

Mr. Nonis: Yes, your honor.

Judge Milian: Now, Mr. Danforth, please describe when this verbal agreement took place.

David Danforth: Of course, your honor. It was late April or early May, 2004. The Leafs had just lost to the Philadelphia Flyers in game 6 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.   In a drunken stupor, I sent a stern email to the club's General Manager about the team's performance.  A few days later, I received a response from the club's official email account: MapleLeafs@aol.com.  I offer this as Exhibit A. As you can see, it's just a bunch of pictures drawn with a crayon, but in the bottom right corner you can make out three letters: JFJ. These are the initials of John Ferguson Jr., who was GM of the team at that time.  Attached to this email was an official invite to the team's state of the club press conference with season ticket holders.  I attended this meeting, and each and every individual in attendance can verify that the club begged and pleaded with us to continue to support the organization. The team tried to win us over by announcing that sushi would be offered from concession areas in the arena beginning the following season.  Lastly, the team promised that we would be rewarded with long-lasting post-season success if we continued our financial support of the club.  This account is corroborated by three signed affidavits, which I offer as Exhibits B, C, and D.  Since that time, the club has seen five head coaches, four epic mid-season collapses, two league wide lockouts, and one measly playoff series, which they lost in historically inept fashion.

Judge Milian: Thank you, Mr. Danforth. OK, at this time, we are going to take a brief break and will return in 3 minutes.

[scene]: cut to commercial

---3 minutes later---

[scene]: cut back to courtroom. Judge Milian is seated at her bench and is ready to hear the defense's case.

Judge Milian: Mr. Nonis, it is now your turn to speak. Please address the plaintiff's argument. By the way, has anyone ever told you two that you look like you could be brothers? Or even twins? I mean, I am pretty freaked out right now. Anyways, please begin.

Mr. Nonis: Uh...thank you, your honor.  While I do not doubt that Mr. Danforth was told by the organization in 2004 to continue to pledge his time and money, under no circumstances should this be construed as a verbal agreement.  We're bad pretty much every year, and every year we have to beg & plead with our season ticket holders not to abandon the club.  We've even arranged for a tax break for companies who use tickets to host clients.  Hockey is a team sport where men run around on grass with a oblong ball made of pigskin and attempt to score what is known as a "touchdown".

Judge Milian: Mr. Nonis, I am not a big sports fan, but I am pretty sure that you just described football, not hockey.

[scene]: At this point, there is a commotion in the back of the courtroom. A sudden surge of men & women in business attire begin streaming towards the empty seats at the front of the courtroom. No explanation is ever offered as to why these individuals were not in their seats immediately following intermission.

Mr. Nonis: As I was saying, your honor, the club cannot be held responsible to all of its fans for on-ice failure.  Sports teams often experience long periods of sustained misery.  If anything, that is when the club needs the time and money of its fans the most.  As such, I kindly request that this case be dismissed.

[scene]: at this point, an individual way in the back of the room runs up to the bar and tosses a blue and white Maple Leafs jersey onto the floor at the feet of Mr. Nonis.  He is quickly grabbed by the bailiff and other security and dragged from the room. It appears that the courtroom is descending into chaos.

Judge Milian: WHAT IS GOING ON?! ORDER! ORDER!.  Now then, I understand that Edward Rogers of Rogers Communications and George Cope of Bell Canada, which jointly own MLSE, are here today on behalf of Mr. Nonis.  Do either of you have anything to add?

[scene]: camera cuts to two men wearing suits made from $100 bills seated behind Mr. Nonis.  The two men look at each other with a puzzled expression, then turn to Mr. Nonis.

Mr. Nonis: Your honor, Mr. Rogers and Mr. Cope are unable to address the court without the assistance of a translator. Is the court able to provide someone who can speak in old-timey cash register noises?

Judge Milian: Just forget it.  I am ready to make my decision.  Mr. Nonis, your organization has become incredibly wealthy on the backs of average Canadians who are desperate to see a winning hockey club in Toronto.

Mr. Nonis: Thank you.

Judge Milian: Mr. Nonis, that was not a compliment.  As is plainly obvious, your organization has a complete disregard for its fans and seems to find little incentive to produce a winning hockey club. Additionally, you continue to deceive your patrons annually in order to perpetuate a cycle of general shittiness.  It is my judgement that your company did enter into a verbal agreement with the plaintiff and failed to hold up your end of the deal. As such, I find in favor of the plaintiff, Mr. Danforth, and award him $1000.00 CDN in damages. As this court is located in the US, that will need to be transferred to US funds, which, given current exchange rates, amounts to $19.67 USD.

[scene]: in the back of the courtroom, a bald middle aged man cackles maniacally.

Judge Milian: Court is adjourned.