Fresh off my dip in the swimming pool, while enjoying a bright, warm, sunshiny day in Winnipeg, what best to do other than talk about the Stanley Cup Finals? The finals, which begin Saturday, live from HockeyTown, in front of a capacity crowd of people masquerading as row upon row upon row of empty seats in the Joe Louis Arena, the youthful exuberance of the Pittsburgh Penguins will face off against the veteran smarts and ingénue of the Tre Kroner of the Swedish National Team Detroit Red Wings?
Many commentators, in their previews, are speculating that this series will spark a potential renaissance of the NHL; the series that will force the NHL back into the forefront of the consciousness of the American viewer. One of the marquee franchises, pitted against the future of the game in a battle for NHL supremacy. The finals that will re-create the famed SI cover that said the NHL was hot and the NBA was not.
While I think that the NHL lucked out in getting as good of a match up as it could have possible wished for, I also think they are (typically) unlucky in that at the same time as their marquee match up is “dropping puck”, the NBA conference finals and Championship Finals will be hitting their stride. Unfortunately, the NHL will only take to the forefront of American sports consciousness when the viewing public have no better options to occupy their sport-watching time (heavens forbid they exercise). With their being a very good chance that the Los Angeles Lakers will be meeting the Boston Celtics in the NBA championship, the NHL will not get their place in the forefront; they will be lucky to get 5 minutes in the 2 AM SportsCentre on ESPN Desportes.
Despite this, the tall foreheads in New York and Toronto couldn’t be more excited. The network executive/janitor in charge of Versus couldn’t be more excited. NBC couldn’t be more excited (unless the game runs long, in which case it will be pre-empted for the finals of the 2008 senior women’s amateur heads up poker championship). CBC couldn’t be happier that they don’t have to broadcast an abomination of a final involving two teams from cities more likely to get hit by a hurricane than actually have ice form. And I couldn’t really care less, but because, ostensibly, you have come to this site because you like hockey, I will keep my apathy to myself for now. So, let the puck drop. Let the skates glide, let the sticks slash, and let the home team fall behind. Lord knows this year has to end soon, as training camp begins in 2 months.
For Illegal Curve, I am Andrew (Drew) M.
About the author: Writing sporadically since the inception of illegal curve, (An)Drew has been alienating people since that time. He has the unique skill-set to alienate readers hailing from the Westchester area of New York. Those people seem to be especially touchy about people criticizing their newspapers. Who needs them? Just like the Jews and the Blacks. (It’s from a Seinfeld Episode, you Anti-Dentite bastard.)