Saturday, April 29, 2006

Hockey Night in Indiana

Last night I needed to call off from my second job and nurse this damn cold that has been bugging me all week long. I had just planned on staying in and drinking cold and flu tea and guzzling some syrup of some sort. Lo' and behold though the Philadelphia Flyers were on against the Buffalo Sabres in game 4 of their playoff series.

Growing up in South Jersey, you were a Flyers fan. There was no way around it. And if you wanted to fight it, you soon realized that most cute girls were Flyers fans as well.

What is it about girls and hockey? I'll never understand.

Last night may have been the first hockey game that I watched start to finish all season. Maybe in the past three years, especially considering the fact that one whole season was lost due to labor disagreements. Still though, last night after the Flyers fell behind 2-0 when they scored at the end of the first period to bring it back to 2-1 I was pretty excited. Going into the third period at 2-2, I actually was visably nervous. After a 5-4 win, I was very happy.

Thing is, I can't imagine still following hockey for a full season. My senior year of college I actually kissed the Stanley Cup at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. Another year in college when driving down to Alabama for a wedding two friends and I smoked cigars in a Friday's after watching the Flyers win a playoffs series against the Rangers. I loved hockey. It's hard to follow out here in Indiana. You don't go to a bar and see people watching or talking hockey. But, Scot, you follow the Columbus Crew religiously and nobody cares about them. True. But, thats soccer, and soccer is different. It was the sport of my youth.

Though I can't imagine following a whole season as I said, every once in a while though it's nice to peak in at the Stanley Cup Playoffs. And there was an extra bit of provincalism running through my blood here, since I went to school near Buffalo and suffered many embarassing Flyers meltdowns against inferior Sabres teams.

Hockey will never have the piece of my heart again it once had when I was growing up. But, my word do I hope the Flyers pull this off against the Sabres.


mike said...

I was a hardcore hockey guy back when I lived by St. Louis, but I pretty much gave it up after living here in Indy for a year. It's a game that works a whole lot better live, and without a regular fix it's just hard to be into it.

The Blues traded away everyone I ever cared about and I thought that I'd just lend my loyalty (or lack thereof) to the Edmonton Oilers (where they traded my guy, Chris Pronger) but when hockey started this year I couldn't bring myself to actually watch a game. Before the playoffs started I told myself that I'd watch, but I still haven't.

I hear it's good though. But then again, I always thought it was good.

scot said...

Yeah, I remember my first year living here I would watch at least a game a week on ESPN, and for some reason I always got Blues games on Fox Sports Midwest. But after a year or so I just ran out of the energy it takes to keep up. It doesn't help that under Bobby Clarke the Flyers seemingly turn over 3/4 of their roster every year. It's hard to establish any bond with the team when you see 'em maybe 4 times a season and you don't recognize 1/2 the players anymore.

And of course, as you said, it translates much, much better live.