Posts Tagged ‘nhl’

it was twenty years ago today

That Wayne Gretzky was traded to the LA Kings.

Twenty years. Man, I feel old.

This was a trade that shook sports fans to the core. It mean that everyone was expendable, everyone was for sale, nobody was untouchable.

The Great Gretzky was traded. That has to be THE most jaw dropping moment I’ve ever experienced as a sports fan. No trade in sports has come close to creating such a “holy shit!” reaction among sports fans, or had such impact.

Gretzky was the man. The King. He owned hockey. No matter what team you rooted for, no matter where your loyalty lied, you knew in your heart that no one on your team was as good as Gretzky. You envied the Oilers, envied their storied dynasty (even though my team had recently created their own dynasty) and wished like hell he played for your team. But he was an Oiler. He was the Oilers. He was Superman, with a 99 instead of an “S” on his jersey. He was untouchable. Or so we thought.

Hearing Gretzky was traded was like finding out Santa Claus wasn’t real. My world view was shattered. If Wayne Gretzky could be traded, anything could happen.

That night, I met a bunch of hockey friends at a local bar. It was all anyone could talk about. In the middle of baseball season in New York, when Rickey Henderson was stealing a million bases and the Mets were on their way to 100 wins, everyone was talking hockey. There was talk – drunk talk – of going to Edmonton and joining the pitchfork and effigy crowds in solidarity. And there was a lot of calling Gretzky’s wife Janet Jones the Yoko Ono of hockey.

I never got used to seeing Gretzky in an LA jersey. It looked like he was wearing a Halloween costume. It looked wrong. But that trade did teach me to never say never when it came to favorite sons being traded. Gretzky was traded. Anything could happen.

Sportsnet has some original reports from that day.

Puckhog recalls the disturbing moment when he found out.

More at trader crack’s

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Day 97 of 365: a year in songs and photos
Song: Hanson Brothers, The Hockey Song

No, not those Hansons. This band – an alternate persona to the amazing NoMeansNo – is a fun punk band that sings songs about hockey. They’re Canadian, eh.

Tonight, my New York Islanders play Todd’s Anaheim Ducks. We’re going to the game. Me in my Islanders jersey and Todd in his Ducks jersey. This should be fun.

We decided to make a bet on the game. Whoever’s team loses has to do the 5am dog walk for the next week. Unfortunately, my team is in a bad slump. It does not look good for me or my beauty sleep (really, I get up at 5 anyhow. It’s just the point of having to walk the dog every cold morning for 7 days straight).

Oh, the good old hockey game
It’s the best game you can name
And the best game you can name
Is the good old hockey game

Amen to that. You can keep your football. There’s nothing like hockey. Sure, I prefer the 80’s style, no helmets, bench clearing brawl version of the NHL, but I still love the game more than any other sport.

Old time hockey!

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i love this game

i love this game

25 degrees and snowing in Buffalo and 73,000 people show up for an outdoor NHL game. Watching this is pretty awesome. I wish they played more games like this.

They did a little Slap Shot special in between periods, which would have been better if I didn’t have to listen to Bob Costas.


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the 2007/08 NHL season: nowhere to look but up

In other news, the predictions for the 2007-08 NHL season came out and all I can say is, it’s going to be a long, long year in this house. Maybe I could handle the fact that my team is predicted to finish last in their division, if it weren’t for the two people in my household whose teams are predicted to finish first (Rangers) and second (Ducks).

Well, at least my expectations are as low as they can be. Now every win will feel like Christmas!

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Free agent season in the NHL started this weekend and the Islanders were like a kid losing at Monopoly, just tossing all their properties out on the table and watching them disappear.

Jason Blake. Tom Poti. Ryan Smyth.

I knew they were going to lose Smyth going in, but geez. This is a team that is falling apart at the seams. How many years in a row can you tell your fans you are in a rebuilding phase? Especially when all the supplies you need to rebuild keep disappearing. How about a rebuilding era? That’s more honest.

They should have never traded for Smyth to begin with. What a waste. Spend millions on a guy who is going to be a free agent and gives you no inclination that he is going to sign with you. Way to go. As far as Blake goes, I’m pretty pissed about that. Blake WANTED to stay on Long Island. They should have taken some of that 31 million they offered to a guy who wanted out and offered it to a damn good player who wanted in.

It’s almost heartbreaking. What’s funny is a lot of people took me to task when I made the declaration that I was no longer cheering on the Yankees. They said I was a fair weather fan who only liked to root for a winner. Yet, here I stand with the Islanders, year after year of disappointments, aggravation and ineptitude. I never give up on them and I will never abandon them. Somewhere down the road they will build up again and become contenders. That won’t happen, I’m convinced, until the current ownership changes, but it will come. It has to. I BELIEVE IN MIRACLES!

Meanwhile, the enemy Rangers have signed Scott Gomez and Chris Drury and my son just won’t shut up about it.

It’s going to be a long off season. And an even longer season.

At least I can always live vicariously through Todd and his Stanley Cup Champion Ducks.

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My tits should have won the Conn Smythe!

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Wearing of the Ducks

wearing of the ducks

I’m a New York Islander fan (sad as that may be these days). Todd, being from California and all, is a big Ducks fan.

Unfortunately, he has to work late tonight and won’t be home until the third period. Which leaves me to wear his lucky jersey.

I did the same Monday night and as soon as I put it on, they scored. Then Todd informed me that if I rubbed my tits vigorously, the hockey gods would be pleased. So I did. And the Ducks scored again.

Looks like I will be rubbing again tonight.

But not often. The hockey gods do not like greediness.

The Ducks can do their part for the war on terror by winning tonight and keeping the cup in America.


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