NHL on TNT studio host Paul Bissonnette may think that his back and forth with New York Islanders legend Butch Goring is all fun and games, but Spittin’ Chiclets co-host Ryan Whitney isn’t too sure the 1981 Conn Smythe Award winner is in on the joke. "I sense he's serious," said Whitney on their most recent podcast. "Those old school guys, man, they don't f--k around."
Goring made sure he would have the last laugh of 2023 with a blistering post directed to “Biz” that detractors of brash and loud-mouthed Bissonnette applauded. "You're absolutely correct; I am a senior citizen. I have all of my own teeth. I do not wear diapers; I would rather sh-t all of you," wrote Goring on Dec. 30.
While this may be all an act to Bissonnette and part of his schtick, others, including former New York Rangers and Islanders GM Neil Smith, aren't laughing.
Smith came to the defense of Goring, writing, "This is beneath the dignity of the NHL fraternity. [Butch Goring] is an iconic 4X Champion & Conn Smythe winner, & a great ambassador for all of us, posted Smith on Dec. 20. "Your demeaning comments are not funny to any real hockey people; it’s an amateur attempt at humor that fails miserably."
Bissonnette, who said he had DM'd Goring about coming on the podcast but without a response, took one final jab at "Butchy Boy" before the year was out. Goring has yet to respond, and until he decides to join the guys in the studio to yuck it up, it's unclear if the jokes and jabs being thrown each other's way are being seen as funny and amusing by both sides.
"You're sh-ting on his team non-stop, and then all of a sudden, you come with the whole change of heart," Whitney explained to his co-host. "But Butch to me, unless he comes on the pod and we can chat with him and laugh, I think he's sitting at home, he puts his glasses on to get on his phone to tweet away at you, and he hates your guts."
This "feud" has gone on for nearly a year, starting after Bissonnette used his platform on TNT's broadcast to repeatedly call the Islanders boring and that he would prefer to see other teams in the playoffs rather than the 'snoozefest" team from Long Island.
If this is more like a professional wrestling storyline with a heel and babyface then I think we'd all be in favor for this to continue on and culminate at the appropriate time. However, if there's even a slight chance that Butch is personally offended by Bissonnette, it may be time for things to cool off.