I was the enforcer for the 1980s Edmonton Oilers hockey dynasty. I led a data-driven transformation of enforcing.
When I first entered the league, we were stuck in this medieval Dark Age of chirps. Guys were throwing “your mom’s a whore” but I was asking, “Mario Lemieux has irregular bowel movements, he’s sensitive about those bowel movements, how can this data help us win games?”
My first game with new data, I yell, “Gordie, I have your personal banking information.” Then I really get to him, “Your spending is reckless. $500 a month on peanuts and novelty t-shirts? I want to help you.” As Gordie says “You really mean it?” I slip one through his legs to Gretzky. That’s tough data.
I didn’t score goals. I roped players into pyramid schemes mid-game. “So I pay you to sell water filters?” “Exactly, then you recruit your line mates to sell water filters.” “And we all make money?” “Yes.”
There were some tough shells though. I’d yell, “it was foolish to invest in New York’s overvalued real-estate,” they’d yell back “you suck.” I’d reevaluate post-game. Did these guys call my bluff? Investing in New York’s real estate was a very financially prudent move. Was it the multiple concussions they had sustained?
Of course, I had my dark moments, like when I paid the director of Cheers for spoilers and mid-fight revealed them to noted Cheers fan Mark Messier. The ultimate cheap shot. I put myself in the box for ten minutes.