Will this shut the Cleary cretins up? Will this get them off his back?
Nawww....Hell, he shoulda been scoring goals even with a broken back.
And don't tell me that was only for the last two games. Did any of you see him let up? To all of you Cleary haters out there, move on and get.a.life. Pick on someone your own size because you'd never ever fit in his skates.
Somehow, the Wings have strived AND succeeded without Lidstrom, without Holmstrom, without Bertuzzi, without Helm, and without DeKeyser. Somewhere along the line in this shortened bastardized season this ragtag, crippled, makeshift, old and slow, rookie-peppered bunch of hockey players became a TEAM. A team that has taken the number one hockey squad in the world to a seventh game. Still nobody much is talking about them with any sense of what it took for them to get where they are.
It simply doesn't matter. Anybody with a penchant for sports history will be talking about this team in years to come, and they will get their due. They are a miracle of their own making. I am so very proud to be here in this moment. To savor their valor, and experience the thrills and chills at their very Trying.
I love you Detroit Red Wings. Thank you so much for who you are, and what you have become. And I am so very proud and honored to be one of your fans.
No this isn't me expecting a last game Wednesday.
I have been lucky enough to cheer for a team where every year was a competetive year. I arrived in Vancouver in 94 just after the riots and was very interested in this game called hockey. My cousin was watching the Canucks play the Wings and he was being all gooey about how this Canucks team was just one win away from winning the 'cup'. What 'cup'? The 'Stanley Cup'! The cup that caused the riots, he says. In the Philippines, we last took a stand and marched the streets, peacefully, for our rights. What is this cup that can cause a riot?
The wings won that day and my cousin was angry. I said to myself: 'I'm gonna cheer for those guys'. I don't want a team that caused riots!.
I go to school and I play hockey for the first time. I passed the puck to my goalie and i scored on my own net. My whole team was dejected but they said 'it's ok, we'll score back'. Although I scored another goal on my own net I remembered what it was like to play the game. I watched highlights on tsn and followed the wings religiously. NHL 91 was my very first video game. NHL 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98 all followed.
I put my faith in the wings. I prayed for them. I cried for them and I trusted in them. Every success they had, I felt, was also my success. I had something to believe in.
96 was a major year for me and all wings fans because this was the Yzerman goal. I remember me sitting down in front of the TV then jumping uncontrollably. It was 'our year'. Finally after losing last year. Then we face the avs and draper gets hit. We lose the series.
I was still in grade school and had been bullied so I just went home, waited for wings highlights and got my taste of success. Then March arrives and mccarty pummels lemieux, scores the winning goal and exacts the full revenge. I felt a sense of euphoria knowing that there's always a next time. We win the cup despite being underdogs to the flyers. I watch vlad's crash video. I was dejected. Next year we play our hearts out after losing a key player and sweep washington. I see Stevie put the cup on vlad's lap and wheel him around while the whole team was behind him. I cried. I get teary eyed even now. They did something more than for themselves. I applied that in my life.
Mediocre years came but I still got to watch hall of fame players wear a wings jersey. Fedorov, larionov, coffey, ciccarelli, vernon, shanny, hull, robitaille, murphy, clark, cujo.
Then 02. Hasek takes us to the finals and during the year I watched Zata and Datsyuk play alongside Hull...i knew they'd be superstars. 08 and 09 come and last year.
I reflect back and realized that I've been very lucky. I watched hall of famers, loved the game and applied everything the wings did, to my life. I go through hard times and know there will be a next time. I go through good times and enjoy it cuz there might never be that chance again. I never regretted anything. Last year was when the last of my childhood heroes left. Lids and homer. I loved them both. Then I look back at this team that they built. They're young and inexperienced still. But, like I did, believed.
In a year that 29 teams would have used to tank and get first pick, we go to second round and take the best team to 7. I never once doubted. I prepared for the worst and always expected the best. It has been a joy to watch the new era carry that torch. In retrospect, we should have been all playing golf after the season. But this team made it possible for more palpatations and for wings fans everywhere to still believe.
The President's trophy team isn't going to lose 4 straight in the playoffs to a 7th seed, with the 4th loss being at home. Game 5 shouldn't have been a surprise. Game 6 was our best chance to close the series. We had the game under control through 40 minutes, then Smith makes a rookie mistake and its tied. Quincey's stick breaks, we're losing. Frolik scores on a penalty shot that was a bad call. It happens, now we have to do it the hard way. Babcock is right to keep Smith in there. Its time to look at the bigger picture here. The experience he's getting from these games will help for many years down the road. Years when we're not the 7th seed trying to beat the top two seeds just to get to the Conference Finals.
You can say they "choked" all you want, but the success they've had in these playoffs will be felt for years. Watching guys like Brunner, Nyquist, Andersson, Howard, and Kindl play in these high pressure games and play well, bodes well for us down the line. Sure Smith is making a lot of mistakes, but he's making some nice plays too and gaining lots of experience. The guy is only 24 years old playing in his first full NHL season. Give him a break. Going into these playoffs I felt like the team had a ton of holes, but after 13 playoff games, I'm not so sure that's the case anymore.