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Abel to Yzerman

For Dive Fans: A Refresher

First of all, my condolences to the fans of Buckeye nation.  Watching your team get pasted last night after enduring 51 days of endless fawning must have been difficult.  I ached for you last night Buckeye fans. Truly.

For about 20 seconds.  The rest of the time I pointed and laughed.

On to hockey.  And I’m a hypocrite, as if you didn’t know that already.

I’ve recently claimed the Columbus BJ’s as our NEW RIVAL.  It’s contrived and it was convenient at the time so I could use a variety of ways to get BJ into a sentence.  Oh, they could still fit the bill.  And they may when I need some fodder.  But, really…I’m thinking most of us Wing fans aren’t quite done with the Dique.

But, see, the problem is…Denver’s got a high turnover ratio.  The same fans we hated when we hated Pattie and Floppa and Mikey and Adam?  Well, they’ve all moved on…once they realized no more Cups were in their immediate futures post-‘01.

So, kind and thoughtful blogger that I am, I offer to the hockey fan of Denver (singular usage is intentional) a reminder of why you once hated the Wings, items you’d probably remember on your own if you’d take a few moments of your day to try instead of ironing your Izods.

1.  You hated Kirk Maltby.  You felt he was mean spirited and a “cheap, dirty coward who taunts but refuses to fight.” That, Sally, is a horrible misperception.  Kirk, who currently enjoys the label we’ve given him as “an ineffective forward playing out the string for an organ-I-zation too loyal to its Cup winners” is misunderstood.  A kind man, quick with a compliment on the ice and off, and SI poster boy after we kicked your asses in the ‘97 playoffs.  Ask the Starbucks manager who used to be a Dique fan when being a Dique fan was cool in Denver. He’ll tell you about ‘97.

2. You hated Kris Draper.  This is classic.  See that aerobics instructor over there?  Call him over.  He used to be a Dive fan when that was the trendy thing in Denver.  Ask him why he hated Draper.  He’ll tell you it was because Draper dove into the boards, pulling Claude Lemieux with him.  He’ll whisper to you, only because he always whispers—not because it’s a secret, that the incident scarred Claude for life and that he “hateth that basthard Draper” and always will.

3. You REALLY hated Darren McCarty.  Not because of the beatdown he gave Lemieux just before you elected Claude mayor of Aspen.  Not because of the OT goal to win that game.  Not even because of the hat trick in ‘02.  You mainly hated Mac because he sported a mullet and that went against all fashion sensibilities in the late 90’s.  Oh, the mullet left but you never really forgave him.

4. You hated and spread evil lies about Steve Yzerman.  I can’t find any concrete evidence of that, but I’m looking. And when I find it, watch out.

5. For a brief period of time in 1997 you were convinced the Russians were attacking the state of Colorado, like in Red Dawn.  You literally thought Slava Fetisov, Sergei Fedorov, Vladdie Konstantinov, Slava Kozlov and Igor Larionov were going to parachute into your back yards and take over your towns.  You saw an article in the Denver Post that mentioned “Russian 5” and you ran amok.  Thankfully, you remembered to drink some deer blood, grab some spray paint and contact Powers Booth.  Wolverine!

6. You hated Scotty Bowman.  Oh, how you despised that poor man.  You did your research and made fun of the plate in his ankle.  You pounded the glass behind him and whispered things like, “Kiki Vandeweigh is going to post your ass UP old man!!”  The things you said to Mr. Bowman were horrible and witty.  I’m very certain that when your team was being laughed off the ice at the Joe in 2002, Scotty was just then recovering from the abuse you heaped upon him.

So there you have it.  6 reasons to recall the rivalry, Sally.  6 topics to discuss waiting for your Latte’s this morning.  6 items to carry with you when you go to your Pepsi Can tonite and witness the continuation of Wing dominance in your little building.

Print it out. Keep it. Savor it.  But don’t pull it out until AFTER the Kamensky jersey retirement ceremony.  That would be disrespectful.

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About Abel to Yzerman

Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com