Playoff hockey is here, which means things are officially lit.
At least, that's how Twitter celebrity and Blues fan Anthony Holmes, more commonly known as "Tony X," would describe it.
Holmes became an instant celebrity after accidentally stumbling upon a Blues playoff game last season, offering hilarious commentary of the game from an outsider's perspective. But with a year of hockey fandom under his belt, he's far from an outsider now. In fact, he's become a loyal follower who regularly talks hockey on his podcast, "The Washed Chronicles."
So, almost a year after his T-shirt worthy tweets went viral, and in celebration of the most "lit" time of the year, we caught up with him to see how far he's come since becoming hockey's favorite fan.
BLUES: You discovered hockey during the playoffs last year, and you were pretty pumped about it. What's your excitement level for the playoffs this year?
HOLMES: It's even more exciting now because I went through the regular season. That build up makes it even better. And since I know more about the game it's giving me anxiety now! Like (Game 1)… I was so nervous! It's so exciting.
BLUES: Since you've started following the game, what's been your favorite hockey moment?
HOLMES: Definitely the Winter Classic. That was amazing. I had no idea it was going to be like that… it was a great atmosphere. I would say it's the top sports atmosphere I've ever been in.
BLUES: There's a good chance someone else will watch a full hockey game for the first time during this year's playoff run. Could you now explain to them why a goaltender would leave the net during play?
HOLMES: (Laughs) Yes! They could be pulling the goalie to get a sixth man on the ice to help offensively. Basically to give them an advantage to score… it's kind of like a power play, but 6 on 5. Usually because time is running out and they want to go all in. But it can also be because of a delayed penalty. I feel like I can explain almost all parts of the game now!
BLUES: Were any parts of the sport a little harder to learn?
HOLMES: Probably overtime rules. I understand them, but I was a little surprised that the rules are different between the playoffs and the regular season. But I get how it works.
BLUES: Now that you've developed more of an eye for the game… if you could mimic any Blues player's style of play, who would you choose and why?
HOLMES: It would probably be Colton Parayko. If I played, I would like to be a defensive type of player. I'd want to be able to go around hitting people, but I still want to be able to score and stuff too, like him!
BLUES: If you could give the team a pep talk going into the rest of the series vs. the Wild, what would you say?
HOLMES: I would tell them just play the game that you've been playing! It's been working. Just do your job, count on the other person to do his job, and everything should go as planned!