Stanley Cup Disgrace
I’ve been trying to figure out why this year’s playoff season hasn’t gelled with me at all. I was given the easy answer. The Flyers got knocked out a while ago. Perhaps that would work for the average Flyers fan, but that doesn’t work for me, and for a lot of people I know.
Then I watched the Stanley Cup Final series and realized something tonight. This past stretch of games has shown a dark side of hockey that I am hating every single moment of. There’s such a thing as clean competition for the ultimate goal. For the past couple of Stanley Cup Final series, there hasn’t been much in the way of outright controversy.
All it took was a bite and a blatantly awful hit, and suddenly a dark cloud descended over the NHL’s grand stage. Think what you want of BiteGate or the Aaron Rome hit on Nathan Horton, I don’t care. Point is, these events continue to cloud the NHL’s grand spectacle. This should be the best hockey. This is the end.
All I see are two teams being complete classless assholes (or as I’ve been coined to say, classholes) to each other.
Maxim Lapierre is the type of player that should be banished from the League with his classless conduct. Mark Recchi continues to do or say whatever he wants just because he’s 42 years old. “Dr. Recchi” knows all. I used to respect the guy because of his prowess and because of his former Flyer status. Now he finds ways to call people out and just be a general malady on the game.
It’s a sad situation because I want to love this Final series with everything I have. I love hockey. I’m a fan of the game before a fan of a team. Sometimes I feel like this game shouldn’t even be called a sport. It’s something more.
The way this series is going, it’s an absolute disgrace. I’m hating every second of this Final. I don’t find myself wearing the stupid grin I usually have when I’m watching a game. I don’t find myself with the general excitement I have for every game. I’m watching two teams that hate each other find a way to disgrace the game with their antics.
That being said, the fact remains, a team that I don’t particularly like will be winning the Stanley Cup this season. That much is true. Both of these teams have been struggling to get back into the Final series to obtain the Holy Grail of Hockey. The way the two teams are fighting for it is purely shameful.
I would be embarrassed if I were Claude Julien or Alain Vigneault. Both of my teams play like little kids. Both of my teams don’t play with the spirit of hockey first and foremost. Perhaps that’s the worst part of it all. What these teams are playing right now can’t even be called hockey. It’s a lot worse than that.
I suppose all we can hope for is the return of the 2011-2012 season to take us back to times where hockey’s pure spirit reigned.