Title: View from the Penalty Box episode 20
Date: March 6th, 2018
Length: 36 minutes
Hosts: Cam and Kristofer Connor
Extra: You can subscribe on iTunes or listen on their website at viewfromthepenaltybox.com
Playoff hockey is incredibly exciting. It’s made me wish for a long time that I had a deep-rooted interest in an NHL team. The culture, environments and the fact that a game can be won or lost in a split second, makes the NHL one of the best postseasons in all of sports.
When you think of the sport of hockey, one word that is synonymous with it is ‘tough’! So, for a hockey podcast, you expect hear wisdom and stories from someone that epitomized that hockey toughness, and on “View from the Penalty Box with Cam Connor” I got exactly what I was looking for.
The premise of this podcast is very cool. Alongside Connor is his son Kristofer, who steers the conversation. What works for this show is the fact that it creates a vibe that sounds like a father and son sitting around the table, as dad shares old stories from his playing days. The only difference, is these aren’t the ordinary hockey stories you’d hear from any father. Instead, Cam shares details about his numerous interactions with Wayne Gretzky, or the time he was suspended two games because he went to the opposing team’s locker room and beat up an opposing player. Cam is a gifted story teller and it shows on this podcast. I may have come for the hockey talk, and I got some of it, but I stayed for his stories and infectious personality.
Kristofer knows his role on the podcast and plays it to perfection. He serves up questions that put his father in position to knock it out of the park. In some instances, one question can lead to a 5-minute story or opinion from Cam, however Kristofer isn’t afraid to have a laugh at his dad’s expense or correct him when he mispronounces a name. When moments like that occur, it adds to the show.
As father and son, the Connor’s may have started the podcast to further strengthen their bond. I hope that’s the case. If not, they’ve mastered the art of portraying a son marvel at dad’s stories, while dad beams with joy at his son’s amusement. Not to get too corny, but hosting a podcast with your dad is pretty damn cool.
If there’s one thing I’d do differently, it’s the timing of each episode. Kristofer gives warning that they don’t have a certain timetable for each episode, but weeks without a new podcast can stunt a show’s momentum. Granted, this seems to be more of a hobby than a job for the two, so it’s not all that surprising, but a set schedule would benefit the fan base they’ve developed through their first 20 episodes.
Though there’s a simple, but effective open to each episode, in no means is View from the Penalty Box going to amaze you with its production quality. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized it needs very little production to work. The feel throughout the entire episode is genuine, not fake or forced. So in that case, why take away from that feel? I’m a big proponent of podcasts that take extra steps with production value, but I found myself appreciating the fact that little production preserved the genuine quality this podcast possesses.
If View from the Penalty Box ever takes the time to set a certain schedule for released episodes, it’ll become a huge hit with hockey fans across North America. Especially those who are old enough to remember the days of Cam as one of the most feared enforcers in the league. However, I hope they never change the identity of what this podcast is built on. The day it starts to feel like a job for both Cam and Kristofer, is the day they’ll lose what makes this podcast special. If it’s treated as a hobby, it’ll be in the best interest of not only Cam and Kristofer, but the listener, as well.