Fuck Detroit. No, seriously. Fuck them right in the gall bladder. I will be rooting hard for the Predators in this series, like the ninth piglet in the litter going after that last available nipple. I will rationalize madly away to give you the reasons why I believe Nashville will win this series, but to work myself up to it, I need to count all the ways I hate the Red Wings.
First, for this:
ESPN used this clip for YEARS in its opening montage for NHL 2Night and every damn hockey game they ever televised. This clip is burned into my brain more brightly than any other hockey clip I’ve ever seen. More than Flying Bobby Orr. More than Joyful Ray Bourque. More than One-Handed-On-His-Ass Ovechkin. A dozen years later, I have hatemares at least once a month about this clip.
Here’s another reason I hate Detroit:
My first hometown hockey hero was Bernie Federko, but Bernie in a Detroit sweater was not a huge deal. Hull had already eclipsed him, for one thing, and for another the Red Wings sucked anyway in the early 90s. Hull in a Wings sweater was just…wrong. Like walking in on your Dad banging your girlfriend wrong.
Oh yeah, I also hate this guy:
You know, it takes a special kind of asshole to come off poorly in a comparison with Claude Lemieux.
Speaking of Claude Lemieux, let’s talk about why the Preds are going to rearrange the Wings’ faces.
1) The New Lemieux. Jordin Tootoo wears the mantle of Most Hated Player in the NHL quite well. All due respect to Darcy Tucker and Sean Avery, but they get a considerable boost from the media machines in Toronto and New York constantly hyping their every douchey move. The Tootoo Train is off the rails, and is not equipped with a cowcatcher. (Whaa?) Kris Draper might want to find his old fishbowl and strap it on for this series, just in case.
2) Chris Osgood. If there has ever been a clearer case of “shot his entire wad in the regular season and then some” I have never seen it. When he falters, they’ll have to hoist Hasek out of the LaBrea Tar Pits to fill in, until he breaks a hip.
3) Phruit Flies. Zetterberg. Franzen. Filppula. Hudler. Lilja. Kronwall. Lidstrom. Ericsson. Holmstrom. Samuelsson. It’s the entire fucking Scandanavian delegation to the United Nations. This ain’t the Olympics, boys, and biathlon is not the designated method for deciding OT games in the playoffs (don’t get any ideas, Bettman).
4) Dan Ellis. Every year, it seems like some no-name goaltender catches fire and steals a series for his team. Dan Ellis is that guy this year.
So, in conclusion, I will attempt to keep my schadenfreude in my pants as I tune in tonight for Game 1 of this epic matchup. Fuck Detroit! Oh, and Predators in 6.