The Hysteria Of Hockeytown

Bruce Bennett, Getty

Being a person who chronically criticizes others, often to the point where the criticism becomes incendiary, it’s important for me to be self-critical as well.  Not only critical of myself, but of my own team. And by “team”, I don’t mean the Red Wings.  I mean Wings fans.

We must all admit, that we have been spoiled rotten by the Red Wings.  I have said before, that the Red Wings have given us everything we could ever want in a team, and then some.  I would not want things to be any other way.

I often use anecdotes in my posts to give them a personal element so readers can perhaps find something that they identify with on a human level.  As Wings fans, we all have stories that we can share and enjoy with each other.  This is one of the best dishes that sports fanaticism has to offer.

It brings people from all walks of life together, even if it’s just for a few hours.  The fact that it doesn’t last forever or always give birth to a friendship, is irrelevant.

Now, anecdote time.

After the shellacking Detroit received at the hands of the gunslingers from Washington, someone raised the concern that the everlasting gripe we’ve heard in Detroit for over a decade now, that the team is aging and cannot keep up, will start to seep into the minds of Detroiters.

After a Wings loss, I typically distance myself from nhl.com, TSN, The NHL Network, and similar forums.  I’m not sure what people are saying back in Detroit right now.  I hope it sounds a bit like this: “It’s just one game. We’re still 5-1.  Let’s move on.”

Geroge Malik, a fine writer for Kukla’s Korner, described the Washington style of hockey as “chaos theory”.  I have to extend some praise here and lionize George for this apt description.  “Chaos Theory” is a fine metaphor for Caps hockey.

On Saturday, Detroit could not handle the theory that Jeff Goldblum expounds in the new classic, “Jurassic Park.”

As artful a sport as hockey is, it has a confounding feature to it.  Chance plays a large role in the outcome of a game. More so than in other sports, I believe.

Passes off target, sleepy body language, shaky goaltending, and failure to capitalize on our breaks, led to the “Saturday Massacre.”

It has gotten much easier for me to shake off regular season losses as I’ve gotten older.  I do not want to test this thesis, but perhaps I would be more adept at shaking off a losing streak as well.

Playoffs are obviously a different story.  There is no other time of year where my emotions are more volatile.  This will not change, and I don’t want it to.

Is this a mature attitude to have? No, of course it isn’t.  Do I care? No, of course I don’t.

Our fine organization has put us in a position where we expect something nearing perfection, game in and game out.

We expect the unlikely because the team has delivered the unlikely.  As a result, anything falling short of that starts to gin up a sort of miasma in Hockeytown.

Our thumbs get calloused from excessive depressing of the proverbial panic button.

Time and again, our team has demonstrated that there is seldom cause for alarm.  I don’t have a set of tarot cards or a crystal ball at my disposal, but I’d say it’s a safe venture in believing Detroit will bounce back from Saturday’s obscenity.

I’d prefer our next game to be against a worthy adversary, but due to the eternally frustrating schedule, we will face the Blue Jackets.  On a side note and a minor digression, seeing “CBJ” as regularly as we do on our schedule makes a defection to the Eastern Conference even more attractive.

By the same token, if we can pull off a shellacking of our own against Columbus, that might be a psychological boost the Wings could use.

Let’s trust our team and our coaches.  Let’s use the past to comfort us.  Let’s put another streak of wins together.  Let’s show Ovie and the rest of Washington what great hockey really is. Most critically, let’s win the Stanley Cup for Nick, for those lost during the summer, for ourselves, and because it’s fun.

Ian

 http://twitter.com/#!/ianflemingdunha

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Tags: Chance In Hockey Chaos Theory Detroit Red Wings George Malik Kuklas Korner Ovie Red Wings Hysteria Sports Fanaticism Washington Capitals Wings Loss To Capitals

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