Thursday, August 7, 2008

Hey, Remember Hockey?

So I've had a complaint that my blog has been suffering in quality lately and a request for something that doesn't involve a guy pretending he's a major league baseball player. Even though there's absolutely nothing worth talking about going on in the hockey world right now, I'm going to attempt to make this whiny concerned husband reader happy.

Last summer I wrote a series of posts called Why I Love Hockey which were all about uh, why I love hockey. If you're ever bored, they're all tagged with "Why I Love Hockey," and some of them are some of my favorite things I've written here. When I check my blog stats, the popular posts of course fluctuate a lot, but one that's almost always in the top five is the post I wrote for that series about Lindy Ruff.

But when I sat down and made a list of things that I loved about hockey, there were some things that weren't really meaty enough to get a whole post out of so I put them to the side and forgot about them. Until now! So here are some quick, short reasons I love hockey to take you into the weekend:

Stick tapping. Stick tapping is awesome. When guys tap their sticks for a good fight or play, it always makes me smile and when guys tap their sticks in some kind of tribute it always, always makes me tear up. One of the most touching things in sports.

Players head-butting the goalie after a win.

Fun, melodious foreign names that just roll off your tongue. I always call Saku Koivu by his full name just because I like saying it.

First career goals.

Goal celebrations where the teammate looks even happier than the guy who scored the goal.

Goals by defensive defensemen. Hank and Toni's annual goals make me happy no matter how the rest of the game went.

Toni scored! TONI SCORED!

Goals by Andrew Peters. It's crazy but when he does score, it's usually a pretty darn nice goal.

The traditional team photo with the Stanley Cup and how it looks exactly like a photo a kids' team would take with everyone piled on top of each other, ear-to-ear grins and pointer fingers raised.

Preseason practices. Everyone's happy to see each other and a whole new season is in front of us.

Teammates fishing pucks out of the net for a teammate who just scored a monumental goal of some sort.

Ryan Miller's half circle spin as he leaves the ice.

Traditional markets griping about non-traditional markets and non-traditional markets griping about traditional markets.

Doug Allen singing the anthems. I hate when it's not Doug Allen.

Skaters kicking the puck to their sticks.

Photos of guys leaning over so far they're on the sides of their skate blades.

Car horns honking "HONK! HONK! HONKHONKHONK!" across Buffalo after a big win. Back when we didn't have a car we had to leave a game as it was going into overtime or we'd miss the last bus to Hamburg. But we knew what the outcome was as soon as the horns started up.

Stupid puckbunny signs and Stanley Cups made out of aluminum foil.

Come from behind wins.

Backhand shots for goals.

Slap shots in the shootout.

The mind meld of a large crowd that boos, cheers, oohs and ahhhs together.

Hope that this is the year even when that hope is misplaced.

Hope that this is the year especially when that hope is misplaced.

(Have a great weekend.)


twoeightnine said...

Saku Koivu isn't his first name? News to me.

Re: Doug Allen video. How did we not win that series? Did you see the beards on those guys? Those should have been worth two or three extra goals a game. That was right as I was in between Shortsville, Philadelphia, DC and Chicago so I never got to see any extra coverage.

alix said...

Awwwwww!!! I love all these little reasons. And *sniff* that Trev tribute gets me EVERY time! Stupid Flames. I'm supposed to hate them.

Anne said...

My personal favorite hockey name to say is Petteri Nokelainen.

I love unabashed excessive celebrating when a player (on the team I'm cheering for) scores a goal. Ovechkin annoys a lot of people but I love watching Ovechkin celebrate a goal... as long as its not against us.

Jennifer said...

Thanks! This just made me miss hockey even more. But, October will be here SOON!!!

bbC said...

Ryan Miller's half circle spin as he leaves the ice.


And I love listening to the crowd's cheers, boos, and ooh's & ahh's. Like when the opposing team scores and everyone says, "AH!!" at the same time.

amy said...

Goal celebrations where the teammate looks even happier than the guy who scored the goal.

I've noticed Roy and Gaustad seem to be the biggest examples of this. Roy's grin is so darn infectious.

Mark B said...

Ah, so this is a hockey blog after all :P

Nice work.

Lee Andrew said...

What is your "concerned reader" complaining about. You talked about the Bills! That has to count for something.

Kathee said...

Players head-butting the goalie after a win.


Okay, I actually love most of those reasons, but that has to be my favorite.

Anonymous said...

When I'm in Buffalo, Dougie singing the anthems is mandatory. In NJ, it has to be Arlette. I'm sure I've written about my screaming of "I LOVE YOU, ARLETTE" and "YOU'RE NOT ARLETTE" at each of the games... or maybe that was on the -Ookies boards...

Heather B. said...

289, our beards were really marvelous in that series especially compared to the Sens. Say what you will about Chris Drury, the man could grown a beard.

(Just the brief seconds of Chris Neil all jumpy and chatty during O, Canada makes me want to sock him in the nose.)

Amy, Derek is definitely one of the best celebrators. He always breaks out that grin no matter who scored.

Lee, maybe the "concerned reader" isn't a Bills fan? I mean, I was so careful to conceal his or her identity so you never know.

Matt, I always softly boo anyone who isn't Doug when they first come out. Doug is a serious part of my going to see a game routine.

Anonymous said...


Heather B. said...


... Should I be offended by this question being in all caps and punctuated with an exclamation point?

Heather B. said...

Or were you planning on proposing?

Kirsten said...

But MIKKO Koivu rolls off the tongue so much better. I've never really called Brendan Shanahan "shanny" because his full name is so much more fun to say.

Heather B. said...

Kirsten, we'll have to agree to disagree. I prefer the way the "oo" at the end of Saku goes with the "oo" at the end of Koivu. I do agree about Shanahan though. Not a big fan of the nickname Shanny.

Kirsten said...

In reality, I do enjoy both the names of the brothers Koivu, but I feel badly for Mikko always having to be "Saku's little brother", so I just have to give Mikko a plug here and there because he's awesome.