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How Bad Could It Hurt?

I admit I am a day late on this one.  I read it yesterday and decided you the reader may have had enough of Leafs talk so I did not post but did re-tweet it.

After a few emails asking me about it, I decided to post it today.

from Sean McIndoe of Grantland,

There’s a secret that Toronto fans aren’t supposed to talk about, but after what happened Monday night, I don’t care about anything anymore, so here it is: Heading into Game 7 against the Boston Bruins, Leafs fans were OK with losing.

Not "OK" as in we wouldn't care. Leafs fans wanted a win, were hoping for a win, and — in some cases — may even have talked ourselves into expecting a win. And we were ready for the three hours of agony we knew were coming. A Game 7 in the NHL playoffs is pure torture, and Leaf supporters were feeling that every bit as much as fans of the Bruins.

But there was an insurance policy, because the 2013 Leafs season was already a success. A team that hadn’t made the playoffs in seven seasons and was expected to miss them yet again had ended the drought. Young players who’d been written off as busts suddenly emerged. A franchise that floundered for a decade had finally found an identity. And though they were written off after falling behind three games to one in a series against a team that had spent the last few years kicking sand in their faces, the Leafs clawed back with a pair of gutsy wins to force a deciding game.

A loss would sting for a while, sure. But it couldn’t really hurt, not the way big losses are supposed to. It couldn’t leave a scar, whether it came in a blowout or sudden death or somewhere in between.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink


Primis's avatar

I read this yesterday and this struck me from it:

“Games like Monday’s aren’t something that a sports fan wants to organize like library books on a shelf. That’s reserved for the good stuff, where you want to argue and debate and relive all the little details. You don’t rank Those Games, because that would involve thinking about them.

Those Games don’t get neatly filed away. They get tossed into a messy pile somewhere in your sports fan psyche. They’re the landfill in your backyard.”

I… don’t agree with that.  I don’t know how it works for fans of other teams I guess, but with the Wings fans those aren’t forgotten.  They’re there, every day.  A2Y’s glossary used to be 50% references to these kind of moments.

It also doesn’t just “go away” with a title.  Or two.  Or even 4.  They’re still there, and they still tear you up inside when subjected to them again.  Anyone who says otherwise is just lying.

If your team doesn’t have Those Games… that’s just sad.  Because that means you are WIN/ATL or CBS.

Posted by Primis on 05/15/13 at 02:17 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

Not sure any other hockey team’s fans set the bar as low as Maple Leaf fans.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie, MI on 05/15/13 at 04:53 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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