Monday, February 5, 2007

Original Six Showdown

See. What are they thinking? Play once a year, visit every other year. The Detroit Red Wings and the New York Rangers have played more than 570 times since the 1930s. Do not disrespect history. Let the teams play!

And what a game it was tonight between the two original six teams. By the time we made our brazen grab for some lower bowl seats right behind the Rangers goalie, the Wings were well on their way to a come from behind victory. They scored three unanswered goals in the third period that erased a two goal deficit.

And for me at least, there is a new hero for the winged wheels - the torch bearer for a new generation of Stanley Cup Champions - and his name is Henrik Zetterberg. Or as the old school Red Wings refer to him: Hank. The guy was everywhere and when the game ended he had scored the game winning goal and was named the first star of the game.

The poor Rangers fans could only boo their team in the final minutes of the game, while the small but vocal minority of Wings fans poured salt into those wounds ("Sorry, guys, no playoffs this year, again!")

I understand how it is to follow a cursed franchise. And despite some (okay, maybe a lot) of early playoff defeats, the Wings are a franchise that rarely lets you down. They could have been forgiven for giving up this game after falling behind by two goals on the road, but no, they kept on scrapping and fighting and now find themselves, once again, one of the top teams in the league.

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