It's finally here. All those months of agony and ecstasy, pleasure and pain, boners and buzzkills--and now we get to do it all over again.
It's a great day to be a hockey fan.
More specifically, it's a great day to be a Red Wings fan. My favorite Red Wings hat is perched atop my desk for all to see. (I triple-dog-dare a horrible Pens' fan to stroll in here and say a word--one. fucking. word.) Jerseys will be worn on casual
We're pulling out the big guns for the postseason, and we hope you'll join us. That's right: Get out your talismans, voodoo dolls, nipple-clamps and electro-powered boxsprings and come along for the ride.
First things first: Following the Olympic break, we instituted a creed here to get us in the zone for the final stretch of the regular season. Now, with a few tweaks and additions, we present you the following:
1. We believe in the power of the 19th consecutive year the Wings have made the playoffs.
2. We believe Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen, Valtteri Filppula, and Tomas Holmstrom are on a white-hot roll and are just warming up, for sure.
3. We believe in the power of Jimmy Howard, rookie extraordinaire, to stop pucks with his aura. (Do the pucks even touch him?!)
4. We believe it's now Dan Cleary's lot in life to make Brian James look like a complete jackass. (It's working!)
5. We still believe in Mike Babcock. Period.
6. We believe in the unmatched awesomeness of our blueline, as well as our forwards who own both ends of the ice. (If someone's reading this who doesn't believe in that, I will fucking KRONWALL your ass.)
7. We believe in Patrick Eaves notching a Gordie Howe hat trick at some point during the Wings' playoff run. (And, since shootouts are a no-go, there will be no #Eavesing of oneself, only of others, which is not only tolerated but wholeheartedly encouraged.)
8. We still believe in the kill.
9. We will always believe in dancing with Lord Stanley in June. Period.
Game 1 versus the Phoenix Coyotes is tonight. Moments like right now are when I most wish I had a DeLorean. Why? So I could travel back to nine months ago, before I knew that the Coyotes would even stay in Phoenix, let alone make the playoffs, and place some huge bets. It's as surprising as my realization last weekend, approximately 20 years late, that I rock at batting left-handed. (Don't laugh. I had a painful childhood. My therapist tells me it's ok to say that in the face of adversity.)
The playoffs are such a magical time of the year. In addition to watching the Wings do their thing, there are so many other fascinating matchups to track. Home crowds ablaze in team colors, players trash-talking the opposition. Lots of #FuckYeah to go around. That brings me to our Wednesday question this week:
I'm sure that Brian's answer will be Pittsburgh/Ottawa because of how much he loooves Ottawa. [Insert eye roll, for the sarcastically-challenged.]
Other than the Wings, I'm most looking forward to watching the Chicago/Nashville series. Division rivals who both play exciting, tight hockey; however, both teams still have their textbook "What ifs?" hanging over their heads. Will the Hawks' offensive power be too much for the Preds? Or will Rinne stand tall and give Chicago a run for their money? The Preds are one of those teams that come on strong against tough opponents and scare the shit outta me every time the Wings play them. That being said, you know whose side we'll be on. (Sorry, K of C.)
What say the rest of you? Who are you looking forward to watching?
Finally, per the usual, some standbys to get us really, really pumped: