Last month Sharks Director of Broadcasting and my boss, the great Frank Albin, wrote a piece about all he was thankful for. I recommend you check it out.
It is always a wise move to take a step back and realize all of the good things you have in life.
His Great White Bite inspired this very blog in a weird way.
Not to be a contrarian or just a simple jerk, but let me express some of the things that I can't stand in this great game of hockey.
"He Left His Feet"
And just pump your brakes right now. I know that I've gone on this rant before. However I am on a lifelong quest to eradicate this ridiculous inaccurate saying from the hockey vernacular. It is a stain on, dare I say, a scourge on this great game. He leapt, He jumped, He ascended. He elevated and his feet left the ice are all acceptable replacements.
"The Fly By"
After a player scores everybody's happy they hug on the ice and then like a Human Centipede they skate past their teammates on the bench who had nothing to do with the goal and "high five" each other. It's like the Ice Capades.
"Protecting the Goalie"
Spray a little snow, hack at a rebound near the goalies pads or gloves, brush past or Heaven forbid, make actual contact with a guy that is more heavily padded than a shopping mall Santa and watch a group of seemingly well adjusted individuals go crazier than Jack Nicholson in The Shining. Relax boys, your poor defenseless goalie is fine. Kevlar is an amazing product.
"The Pro Fighting Arguments"
It keeps the "Rats" from going overboard. It polices the game. It's a frustrating game and a physical release is needed. It has always been a part of the game. It protects the Stars. It can change the complexion of the game. If you eliminate fighting the stick work and cheap shots would send the game into chaos. The PFC's (Pro-Fighting Crowd) hang on to these myths like a baby clings to his "Binky". Like I've said before, I don't care what side you're on. I just care that you're intellectually honest. I'd have a heck of a lot more respect for the PFC's if they would just admit they LOVE watching two guys punch each other in the face.
What I call The "Adam Oates"
An "Adam Oates" is anyone who criticizes how a goal is scored or an exuberant celebration or if a team "runs up the score". Anything of the "oh, we can't hurt the feelings school of thought out there. Full disclosure time. I pulled an "Adam Oates" last season when I criticized the Edmonton Oilers Nail Yakupov for a wild celebration when he scored a game winner. Unlike the Fonz, I can admit when I was Wwrr..Ww.. Wro...Wrong! You young people Google It. The "Oatsies" of the NHL talk about respect for the game or the opponent. They hide behind tradition and lament about the "kids these days." As the Great Igor Larionov once told me, "Drew, you don't work hockey, you play hockey."
So let the boys play, have fun, score as many ! between the legs 9th goal in a 9-2 win as you can. Pump your fists, slide on the ice, pull a Selanne and shoot your glove. Why are so many Tough Guys so thin skinned? They're more sensitive than a non-praying mantis in church.
..and yes I do realize that this clearly contradicts my earlier thoughts on the "Fly By"
But hey, I'm not perfect, I just act that way.