Saturday, July 23, 2005

What's a Hab?



So the National Hockey League (what?) became a topic of conversation over at Yuda's yesterday. I've been thinking--what with the NHL (what?) coming back and all---that it might be time to get into hockey a bit more. You know---get in on the ground floor while others ditch the thing. The corollary of it being uncool to like popular stuff is that it's cool to like unpopular stuff. And, seeing as how I once floated the idea of professional indoor volleyball as an NHL alternative over at Yuda's, I anticipate that elite North American professional hockey isn't going to get too popular overnight. So I'm cool; whew.

[And I knew I already had a place to go for all the news on the cool guy's NHL: thanks, Off Wing Opinion! I'm cool and informed!]

Okay, then I needed a team. I deliberated the topic in post No. 287 of the YudaChat linked above. Essentially, I boiled the choice down to two: Nashville (hockey in Nashville?) and Columbus (major league sports in Columbus?). Just as I was about to deem Columbus my pick (Gooooo, Blue Jackets!!!), Carl jumped in with post No. 290 and set me straight:

Basil, if you’re going to root for an out-of-market hockey team, I think it absolutely HAS to be a Canadian team. There are six to choose from. The Calgary Flames had a pretty good run last go-round, and have that Jarmoe Iginla guy. Or how about the tradition and pride
of Montreal, which would provide a Nats connection?


I hadn't thought of rooting for the Canadiens, but I was taken immediately by the sentiment of Carl's last sentence. It made sense and seemed appropriate, and I figured I should do my part to show my appreciation to Montreal for the Nats. So, in post No. 303, I declared:

Although the prospect of being a Columbus Blue Jackets diehard is alluring, I nevertheless decided that henceforth I shall root for the Montreal Canadiens.

And so it shall be.

Now, I don't know much about the team, but I've found a great website to alleviate that problem. Just scanning the roster (riddled, as I'm sure lots of other teams are, by restricted free agents), I see some familiar names: Jan Bulis, Jose Theodore, Richard Zednik, and Radek Bonk (cool name). I don't know who Marcel Hossa is, but I hope he remains with the team so I can call him "Marcel the Monkey".

The team presidency seems to be in good shape, too; in fact, when I grow up (as a hockey fan), I'm going to Pierre Boivin University!


[And, no, I didn't pick the Canadiens just so I could make that joke.]



_____________

My favorite favorite team, the Washington Nationals, are still playing, of course---so, in the meantime, I'll still focus on them. No worries there, mates. Since I last checked in, the Nats had the crunk beaten out of them---which is bad---but then bounced back for a victory tonight---which is good.

Like I said Thursday night: if we lose to Clemens, then we lose to Clemens. So what? And we definitely lost to Clemens. That's to be expected, and in that sense our boys really exceeded expectations.

But our season started anew tonight at 54-43, and the Nats responded in kind. Tomorrow, it's Patterson versus some fifth starter dude named Wandy. I'm feeling confident about that, and to split a four-game series with the two losses coming at the hands of Mssrs. Oswalt and Clemens is not ignominious in the least.

Comments:
Just so you don't start acting like a typical Habs fan. They make New York Yankees fans seem humble.

--a Carolina Hurricanes fan (who learned his hockey from the Renegades, and spent his college years going to Express/Gades games in Roanoke and getting booed by the entire arena)
 
Why not the Caps?
 
I hate what happened to the ECHL, Josh. I used to like to go to Renegades games, because they had some great rivalries going. Norfolk, especially. Now, neither city has an ECHL entry, and Richmond's UHL club seems to be teetering.

And, while I don't know a tremendous amount about the Habs' fans (they always seemed a bit uppity), I doubt there is any comparison under the sun that can make a Yankees' fan look humble! ;-)
 
Why not the Caps? Good question. I tried to get into them on at least four different occasions, most recently when they acquired Jagr. At every turn of my interest, they've either been boring or mediocre (except for the finals run, but they got crunked up bad against Detroit).

I thought that if I'm going to get into hockey I should start clean.
 
Greetings from a fellow habs fan...

Marcel Hossa's principal claim to faim is his older brother, Marian Hossa. If you don't know who Marian Hossa is, you'll learn soon enough. He's a big, talented forward who doesn't seem able to put it together consistently. Will he be a regular NHLer? The jury's still out.

But I wouldn't call him a monkey in his presence. He *is* a pretty big guy (unless you are an offensive lineman yourself?)
 
Oi, brutal typo:

faim = fame
 
Thanks, Olibou. Go Habs.
 
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