Sunday, September 27, 2009

SOME Things Are Looking Up

The Wings lost both pre-season games to Toronto. I recorded both and watched the second one tonight after coming home from seeing the local Junior team play. I don't know why I bothered. I keep trying to tell myself that these games mean nothing, that the Wings are playing their Grand Rapids kids while the other teams have their top guns on the ice, but it doesn't make me feel any better. I like when the Wings win and my day is shot to hell when they lose. The start of the season can't come fast enough for me.

The only thing that saved this weekend was going to the Rangers (our Junior team) games. There are some decent players on the team and they are a lot of fun to watch. I don't know if the two teams have some 'history' between them, but they sure went after each other--there were enough scrums, battles, and fights to keep even Canadians happy. Tonight saw all of the guys on the ice--except for the goalies--beating on each other, with six guys being ejected from the game. (Actually, I think a couple of Icedogs--the 'other' team--were ejected earlier in the game.) The Rangers won both games and are on top of their division. Granted, it is just the start of the season, but they are looking good.

We will be going to watch the Rangers more often this year than last. It gets me out of the house and makes me feel as if I actually have a life. I can miss a couple of Wings games--won't kill me. :)

Friday, September 25, 2009

Watching The Game

Finally, beginning tonight, I will get to watch three games in a row on TV. Much, much nicer than trying to get a feed on the computer, that's for sure. While I'm not a big fan of Charter, they have done at least one thing right here: they listened to the subscribers and have kept the CBC in the channel line-up. I forget--despite the fact that I have to watch a set amount of games on Versus and NBC--how lucky we are here in the Northwoods. Many fans are paying big bucks to get Center Ice and I watch all games for free. (Plus the cost of cable, of course.)

Good grief--can this week go any slower?


The Sporting News named the Wings as the team of the decade, Babcock as coach of the decade, Holland as NHL executive of the decade, and Lidstrom as player of the decade. Stay tuned to Pittsburgh being touted as the team to watch for the next decade--don't forget The Boy is going to be player of the next. Hell, THN has almost said it already. In the 28 September issue, the comment in their projected standings is this:
"PITTSBURGH PENGUINS--Next step is franchise evolution from Stanley Cup champion to dynasty team."

GAG!!! They win one Cup and are already on the way to dynasty status? And it still is being debated whether the Wings are a dynasty--after all of their success. Sometimes I really hate Canadians.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Back to Back Losses

Both last night and tonight I had internet issues, so I didn't get to see/hear much of either game. Thank goodness. It certainly didn't sound like the Wings were doing many good things on the ice, at all. I keep telling myself "it's only the pre-season" and I half-way believe that. Ten more days will begin to tell the tale.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Buffalo 3, Wings 1

A low scoring--four goals, one an empty net goal--and only six penalty game, it was all Red Wings until ten minutes left in the game. (The first goal of the game didn't come till the second period.) After Buffalo got their first goal--on the power play--it seemed to give them life and carried them to the win. Most of the game was played in the Buffalo end with the Wings dominating--but they failed to score. Datsyuk and Franzen looked good and Lidstrom was solid, as usual. (The first Buffalo goal went in off of Lidstrom's stick, but shit happens.) Abdelkator is making it very difficult to make a case for sending him to Grand Rapids for the season.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Wings 4, Rangers 3

For the first two periods, the Wings played okay, at best. A lot of turn overs and some sloppy play. Going into the third, they were down 2-0 and Filppula scored, followed closely by Lebda. Abdelkator and Leino played well and Filppula had quite a spring to his step tonight. As was so often the way it was last year, the third period was all about the Wings and they finished off the Rangers with two more goals. Two games played, two games won--if only it could continue this way for the entire season. Game three tomorrow night.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Even My Doctor Understands

Last week I saw my internist. I suffer from 'white coat syndrome,' as well as ordinary hypertension, so the doc wasn't happy with my blood pressure that day. He asked if I have been taking my BP at home and I replied, "A couple of weeks ago, I figured it has been long enough since the playoffs, so I started taking it again. Besides, I needed a baseline before the season starts up again." He laughed heartily. Then he promptly prescribed another BP med for me to take. I guess having 'good enough' blood pressure while NOT watching a game isn't what my doctor wants for me. And, hopefully, I won't feel like I'm about to have a stroke during any games this year. But I'm not counting on it.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Hockey and Me

I will never claim to be a hockey expert. I love to talk hockey with anyone at any time, but I don't necessarily know what the hell I'm talking about. ;) If anyone reads this blog, I'm sure it isn't because they think I have incredible knowledge, but I MAY have some insight that is different from what other bloggers write. And the reason for this? I have a very long history of watching the game.

Before I have memories, I 'watched' hockey. My father was a fan, so I am sure he watched his share of games on TV while holding me in his arms. This, of course, was way back in the days of the Original Six. My memories of hockey games come a bit later.

When I was a child, Saturday found us at my aunt and uncles's farm. Saturday was the traditional 'sauna* night,' and as we didn't have one, we went to the farm to partake in the sauna ritual. We would get to the farm early in the evening--as soon after dinner as possible--so that we children could run around with the intention of us getting tired early. As soon as the sauna was warm enough, the exodus began. The younger the children, the earlier they went into the sauna. My cousin and I were usually the second 'group' to go in and bathe, after our younger brothers. Of course, as soon as we were washed, there was no more playing outside, so we would, at some point in time, find ourselves in front of the TV. And that meant we watched hockey.

Living in the northern part of the UP, one of the TV stations that we got was a CBC feed from Thunder Bay. Of course, this meant we watched Hockey Night in Canada every Saturday night. The TV had a tiny 12" screen and had a flickering, black-and-white image that was often 'snowy.' It is surprising that we even had a clue as to what was happening during the game, but watch it we did. This is my first memory of hockey.

As I got older, we spent less and less time at the farm, but I still watched hockey from time to time. We only had the one television in the house and whenever my father was in the living room, he had full control over whatever was on. So, if someone wanted to watch TV, s/he had to watch whatever was on--and that included Westerns, baseball, and hockey. I don't remember anything specific from that time, either, but it still was Original Six hockey.

Time moved on and we fast-forward to my high school days. I didn't pay a lot of attention to any sports--other than our high school basketball--and spent my days as a typical teenager. That is, until I started dating my high school boyfriend. He was a hockey nut, so I became one, also. (When you are young and in love, you do all sorts of things you don't expect to.) And I also began to follow his team and adopted it as my own--the Boston Bruins.

Looking back, if you were young and followed hockey, the Bruins were the team to follow. After all, they had Derek Sanderson--the 'Joe Namath' of the hockey world--and Bobby Orr. I think The Boyfriend followed them simply BECAUSE of Sanderson. Anyway, they became my team and I followed them all through high school and for the years that I continued to follow hockey.

A year+ after graduation, I found myself getting married and moving to that hotbed of hockey activity, Charleston, South Carolina. In those days, you actually COULD find some games on Sundays, so I tried as best as possible to continue following the game, but it was not to be. By the time I was back in the northwoods, my interest had waned and I watched very few games. This was the beginning of my 'lost years,' in terms of my involvement with hockey.

I missed the Red Wing turn around from the Deadwings to Stanley Cup Champions. I missed most of Steve Yzerman's career. (I'm not crying TOO much, because this ALSO means I missed Gretzky's career.) During those years, I was raising two girls, taking care of a household and family, volunteering to within an inch of my life, and being otherwise occupied. I, once again, lived in a house with only one TV. With the kids and husband 'owning' the one set AND my living most of my life in the kitchen, hockey was one of the last things on my mind whenever I had a chance to watch something. I had a slight idea of what was going on in the NHL, but most everything I heard meant nothing to me. I was in no hurry to get back into the game.

Suddenly, a few years ago, everything changed for me. I'm not sure WHAT happened, but I decided to start watching the game again. And it didn't take long before I became even more obsessed than I had been in high school. Summers have become even harder for me to endure since I became a fan again. I count the days till the season begins and I surf the interwebs constantly for news of the Wings. My obsession has become so complete, that I hesitate to tell my doctor how worried I get, at times, over my blood pressure. I'm sure if he knew HOW I watch games, I would be forbidden to watch anymore. So, I will keep my mouth shut and wait for the new season to begin.

*Sauna is pronounced "SOW-na." (Sow, as in a female pig.) It is NOT pronounced "SAW-na." If you EVER meet me in person, remember that. I do NOT tolerate anyone pronouncing it WRONG and will bitch-slap anyone saying it incorrectly. ;)