Monday, June 9, 2008
"Boy, I bet you're really disappointed!"...
..."Too bad for you. I guess your team wasn't as good as you thought."..."Can we say 'Choke!', boys and girls?"...and lots of other things that I've been hearing as of late.
Let's roll back about a year-and-a-half or so. What was happening? The future of hockey in the city of Pittsburgh looked bleak. The arena deal had fallen through, and they already were celebrating in Kansas City, because it looked like the Penguins were leaving. Then, some late-game magic, and a deal was made. The Pens were staying! How did the team respond?
They made it to the playoffs last year. Though they lost in the first round, these kids got some experience. They learned that in order to succeed in the quest for the cup, they would have to up their game.
How did the fans respond? Can we say 60+ straight sellouts? Two years ago, you could have your choice of sections in a game. Now, it's the hottest ticket in town!
The Pens brought their experience gained last year and their youthful enthusiam to the ice this year, finished second in the conference, and made a serious run at the cup. Unfortunately for them they ran into the best, most experienced team in the league. After a slow start, they did manage to at least make a series out of it. They gained some more experience and learned how to win in the biggest series of the quest for the hardest trophy in sports.
If losing in game six of the finals makes a disappointing season, I look forward to lots more such disappointments! This team is good, and they will drink from the cup of Lord Stanley in the next few years!