Tuesday, June 14, 2011
The Insanity that is Playoff Hockey
Those who know me well know I love my sports especially hockey. This year's Stanley Cup Playoffs is no exception, with many series going 7 games and the occasional overtime tilt the teams have stepped it up. Now, we're on the brink of the best game of all: Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals. Boston Bruins and Vancouver Canucks both get a birth to the finals for the first time since the 90's: Boston in 1990 (losing to Edmonton) and Vancouver in 1994 (losing to NY Rangers). Over the past few games, or series some rabid team fans have been, lets say a little over the top. In the playoffs, dedicated team fans turn the mic up to 11 and proclaim their team is the best til the cows come home. Some, who follow teams out of contention jump on the bandwagon to do the same. Vancouver has it's share of jokes and superfans with their Green Men. Now I admit, I am a huge fan of these obnoxious drunks. Their antics have been mostly fun and in decent taste; from taking cardboard cut outs of Chicago's Vince Vaughn, Nashville's Carrie Underwoood and Boston's Cam Neely and putting Canuck jerseys on them to meeting and greeting Nicole Kidman and Toby Keith during a Nashville game; in spandex and all.
In the finals, it seems some fans get a little wackier and out of line. Just because one despises Boston like I do. I would never do what some Vancouver natives did: spilling beer on a Bruin Milan Lucic's elderly grandparents, yelling at another Bruin players family and starting fights. Bruin fans have uttered death threats at Vancouver fans. It's really scary when you think of the dedication one has to a sport or team. Quite over the top. It's also become a war of the countries and I admit in getting caught up in it. I'm not perfect. I REALLY want to see a Canadian team win the cup, except if its Montreal or Ottawa.
In 2004 Boston played Montreal in the opening round of the playoffs. It started with Boston booing during the entire singing of Oh Canada in a classless act. Back in Canada, they cheer the entire singing of the US anthem. I'm not saying Canada is classier or better, but it shows you who has potential to take the high road. However, Montreal has its share of bat crap crazy fans by setting fires and tipping cars of Boston fans, and even booing the Star Spangled Banner themselves.
Every sport has its dumb fans, every team has superfans but most of them are smart. The occasional dummie ruins it for everyone and tarnishes that cities reputation. Passion is one thing, but it often goes too far. I bet if a Boston fan gets trampled to death if Canucks win the cup tomorrow, nobody will care because it's an opposing team supporter. Terrible. Cheer for your favorite team but be smart, be wise. And if your team loses, don't pull a LeBron James and blame God. Be Wise and GO CANUCKS! Know where to draw the line and enjoy the ride!