Abel to Yzerman
by IwoCPO on 11/17/11 at 03:26 PM ET
In March of 1997 it was widely accepted that Denver simply had more talent than the Detroit Red Wings. Not only that, it was an absolute fact that the Dive had a cozy little corner spot staked out inside the Detroit organ-I-zational head. If my memory serves, and we all know it could be flawed or even skewed, Denver had defeated the Wings 3 previous regular season games that year. And we all know what had happened the previous May.
But an interesting little episode occurred on the 26th. Renowned bitch Peter Forsberg went after Igor Larionov and then Darren McCarty beat the bejesus out of Claude Lemieux. Patrick Roy took a run and got blasted. Joy followed then Mac sealed it in OT.
And that set the stage for a Dynasty. Who knows what would have happened had the Wings not beat the living shit out of a team many viewed as our daddy. An argument could be made that if the Wings hadn’t made a statement that night, the Cup wouldn’t have come home to Detroit a few months later. And, Cupless, who knows how long Scott Bowman would have stayed, how long that team would have remained intact, even how much longer Steve Yzerman would have been a Red Wing.
Almost fifteen years later there’s a new Daddy in town and it’s San Jose. Admit it or don’t, but the Wings firmly hold on to the title of Shark Bitch. They own us. Two straight playoff kicks to the nut sack, each especially painful in their own way. Four consecutive regular season losses. And now, not so suddenly, San Jose has this disgustingly confident tone about them when discussing the greatest franchise in professional sports history.
“It’s nice,” said forward Patrick Marleau, who has been a Shark for 14 seasons and remembers the years of struggles against Detroit.
“Nice”? See..I’m not digging that. When Marleau speaks of an advantage over Detroit, I want him gushing. I want it to be this glorious, lottery-winning, unbelievable miracle of a surprised tone. Something like, “Every day I wake up and thank Jesus that he’s let us play on a level required to beat Detroit. I know it won’t last, but holy mother of fuch it’s just this feeling…so beautiful…I’m sorry. I can’t. Thank you for letting me talk about it because…I can’t.”
Not, “It’s Nice.” That sounds pompous and arrogant. Wrong bitch. Wrong. One group of people in this relationship has the right to be pompous and that’s me and my friends and the team we love. Not you, not your fans, not your family.
A few of the Shark execs were asked by a good little Digger in San Jose about whether they’d like to see the Wings move East, a move promised them by the Dwarf Commissioner years ago. You know what they should have said? I’ll tell you in a minute. Here’s what they did say.
“If you’re asking me as an individual, I would love to see them stay out here,” said Todd McLellan, who spent three seasons with Detroit before coming to San Jose in 2008. “I don’t want to see them in the other. It’s a great draw, it’s a measuring tool for us. It’s an Original Six team with Hall of Fame players on it.
“If I’m a fan and I get to pick one night I’m here, that may be the one night I come to the game,” McLellan said. “There are other teams that have those tools as well, but I’d love to see them stay here.”
“I think we have a really healthy rivalry and respect with that organization,” Wilson said this morning, “and I think it’s great for both our team and our fans to continue this.”
Mother. Fu…that’s not even close to what I deserve to see from those two. Not. Even. Close. What we need is something like this.
“Look, I know what the standard line should be here. I get it,” said Wilson, looking over his shoulder like a scared little bitch. “I’m supposed to tell you that keeping Detroit in the West is good for our fans, good for hockey, great for us as a team to get better. But…between you and me Dave? Get them the fuch out and do it fast. Move them East and then I want an exemption that says I don’t even have to play them twice a year. My ass can’t take it.”
And Todd? This is what I want out of you, toad. “Can I go back? Is Kocur still the video coordinator? I’ll take that job. I don’t care.”
That’s the kind of fear, the kind of unhealthy sick respect our Wings need to garner from that team. Not…“It’s a great draw.”
But…man. It’s got to be re-earned, because there is no respect there. None. And there shouldn’t be. All that happy horseshit is a layer. It’s auto-cliche crap. The Sharks own this team and they know it. There is no greater certainty in that organization than that.
So what now? Well, tonite is now. It has to be the beginning of “Now.” IF the Wings have it in them, an ornery, absolutely starving, nasty, ferocious team wades into that piss tank tonite and lays the wood for sixty minutes. Clubber Lang glowering, standing over Balboa, telling him to stay down because he’s a paper champion.
If they lay down tonite, like they did against the dipshit Blues? If they lay down tonite, all the questions we’ve hinted at about heart and leadership and give-a-fuch are all valid. Every one of them.
You have to think they’re looking at this game like the Wings viewed that game in March of 1997. At some point tough men stand up for themselves and right the world again. If they don’t, they may as well just give that extra cap money to the charity of their choice and hit the frigging links. Because you know San Jose’s coming down the playoff pike again. Baby Jesus decreed it. Winning games like tonite are the first step toward rectifying the sickness of the last two Springs.
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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: firstname.lastname@example.org