Sunday, June 14, 2009
"........To Their F'ing Graves!"
About 5 minutes before face off Friday night at Joe Louis Arena, I called a friend from the 'Burgh on his cell phone.
He picked up on the 6th ring.
“Just wanted to say, 'fuck you'” I began,” taking advantage of the fact that caller ID eliminates any need for phony pleasantries. “Two championships in ONE year? No. Fuck off. Nobody deserves that much glory.”
My friend laughed. He was in Detroit, shut out of getting a ticket. And he's a doctor!
“Okay, good luck dude. I'm jealous, that's all I can say.”
He said he was off to a nearby bar, content to not flush a grand or more on a seat inside. Wearing his Carolina blue Sidney Crosby jersey from the mid-winter classic, I warned him to watch his back.
Detroit, man. What do those residents have to lose?
I settled in for a delicious Championship Game 7. More than just any Game 7, we only get a trophy-attended 7th game in basketball, baseball, or hockey about once every 3 years. The last one in hockey was in 2006.
The odds weren't good for Pittsburgh. Over the last 18 Championship Game 7's – across all three sports - the HOME team was um... let's see... ah... 18-0.
That's what I'd call a trend.
But you can't account for things in hockey like Maxime Talbot happening. To think Detroit was able to knockout the Pens captain and star, and still not win on home ice?
To para-quote Herb Brooks: “You're gonna take this one to your grave...... to your F-ING grave!”
The 2-0 goal was quintessential hockey. A seemingly innocent play, all the way back inside Pittsburgh's own end, suddenly mushrooms into a very dangerous situation. Like a tornado spawning thunderstorm on a once sunny day.
Osgood gets a little crooked coming out to challenge. Talbot stays calm with the biscuit on his tape. And then plunges the dagger deep into the heart of Red Wing nation.
Wow. Now they are in real trouble. Marc-Andre Fleury is on point tonite. The minutes are bleeding away. Crosby is still in the locker-room. I'm sure every Red Wing fan was saying to themselves “this can NOT be happening!”
Finally, Detroit scores late, and now we've got an electric finish. I'm not being cliched when I said I adjusted my prone position in the 5-Hour Energy Dome to a more upright and anxious stance on the front edge of the microfiber.
I wasn't really rooting for either team. I just knew it was going to really, really, SUCK for somebody.
If Detroit gets the equalizer, I think, there's no way Pittsburgh rallies for the game winner. They were barely putting any pressure on the net once they score went 2-0 anyway.
And if Detroit can't punch home the game tying goal, it's going to be agony.
No disrespect for the Pens. But this was Detroit's series to lose. The Pens were nearly dead on 3 different occasions in this series.
Holy, shit! Somebody just rang the crossbar! Wow.
Finally, 13 seconds left, once faceoff and an empty net. Butterfly kicksave, lunging chest save, and then sticks and gloves went airborn.
That bastard! My buddy was going to have his second parade in less than 5 months.
The Red Wings looked beyond devastated. These are grown men, I thought. Tougher than rodeo clowns on steroids. Several of them hung their heads low, perhaps to avoid being seen crying.
I clapped loudly to myself. Good show, lads. Good, fucking, show!
I'll get back to hating those bastard rival Penguins later. Hell, my Capitals have to figure out a way to get through what might be a 10 year juggernaut of Crosby, Malkin and Company in the East.
For tonite, I figured, I was just glad to have been sitting in front of TV for such a fabulous sporting spectacle.