Canucks and Beyond

It's Not a Disaster -- It's a Great Hockey Series.

04/25/2011 at 4:05pm EDT

Having glanced briefly at a few stories this morning, it seems like much of the hockey world has gone insane after last night’s Canucks/Blackhawks performance. In Canucks-land, a staggering amount of whining and wailing as everyone points fingers and screeches “I told you so!” and “Oh, the sky is falling” and “Trade Luongo!” nonsense. Sweet geezus, gimme a break.

And then there’s Chicago—or actually, not just Chicago but from the fans and media of every other team that dislikes the Canucks, which seems to be most of the NHL at the moment—from them, we hear this endless noise machine of cartoonish-cackling, as if they all knew this was going to happen from the start. God, it’s like a giant chorus of chattering monkeys, all hopped up on Jolt Cola and you’d give me a monster headache if I bothered to pay attention to your goofiness.

But what everyone—Canucks fans included—seems to forget is that this is going down as one helluva classic series. Is there anyone in the hockey-loving world who would dare miss Tuesday’s game?? How often does that happen in the playoffs, much less in the opening weeks?

I’m loving it. And hell yes, obviously I’d rather the Canucks had gotten their sweep and allowed me to get off this freaking heart medication. But as the saying goes, this is why they play the games—because anything can happen. And everything certainly has.

As Canucks fans we had a blast through those first three games, didn’t we? And Chicago fans have obviously had a supernova-great time since then. What could be better than that? Isn’t this why we love this game?

This series has had everything, ups and downs for both teams, and a whole lot of drama on the ice—some of it unexpected (i.e. Chicago folding like a cheap tent for some early games; Vancouver melting down like an overcooked grilled cheese for a couple of their own), and some of it fairly predictable: a hard fought series as two great teams have played some of their best and worst hockey at various times since it began.

In the early days, we had the Canucks dominating and Jonathan Toews looking like someone had just shot his dog while he mumbled absolutely incomprehensible and desperate nonsense at the leacherous media who were glorying in HIS team’s downfall in the locker room after every game. Then these last three games where Canucks fans are collectively curled up in the fetal position, and media everywhere seem to be thrilling at the downfall.

But it’s all just noise and I think a lot of people have lost perspective, forgetting that what they’re seeing is a really great hockey series. Or do you disagree?

Game 6 was a thriller, not just because of the hockey, but because of what was on the line. But despite the loss—and yes, I’m not a rock: it freaks me out as much as any other Canucks fan—I also got to enjoy a great game where my team no longer looked like they were dazed and confused, but were back to playing their game. And at the other end, a Chicago team which has had a heroic resurrection and has played with all kinds of heart, and pulled off a heart-pounding overtime win.

Playoff hockey at its best.

Bottom line is this: In the first three games, Chicago faced a 4-game sweep; In the these last three games, it’s Vancouver facing a 4-game sweep, of a sort.

So it’s a draw. And now it’s a one game series. Game 7, winner take all.

And contrary to some others, I like Vancouver’s chances. But more than that, I bet two teams put on one great performance on Tuesday night and I wouldn’t miss it for anything. Even if it damn near kills me.

Bring it on.

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