Wednesday, April 17, 2024

This is Why Hockey is the Best Sport

Tonight the Pittsburgh #Penguins played their last game of the season. Despite an amazing charge at the end--they were 6-1-1 this month (wins-losses-overtime losses). Yesterday they were eliminated from the Stanley Cup playoffs by just one point (a half a win) and would have no postseason play.

But tonight, their definite last game of the season, they played Jeff Carter, a big 6'4" center known as "Big Jeff Carter" who once starred for the Los Angeles Kings. He's now 39, and was widely expected to resign at the end of this season.

And he did so tonight. All the players fromm the NY Islanders, who played the Penguins tonight and are moving ahead to the playoffs, lined up and shook his hand and patted him on the shoulder or neck and had something to say to him:

I have never seen another sport where this happens. Not baseball, not football, not basketball. Maybe it's happened. I haven't closely followed these sports (never basketbal, but I did try to follow the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team as a kid and the Pittsburgh Steelers at a teen into my early 20s), but I never this kind of sendoff for any player in those sports.

I've only been watching hockey seriously since spring 2018. I had a brief spell in New Hampshire in spring 2005 when the Boston Bruins wre in the playoffs and I watced intently for the first time. But since spring 2018 I have been watching closely. And, yes, the players play hard, but it really does seem that in the end that they are all in one faternity.

I wish I played but I never had the chance. But it's been great watching the genius of Sydney Crosby of the #Penguins, a star since he was 7-years old (seriously--that was the first time he appeared on "Hockey Night in Canada," a kind of weekly bible of the sport.

In any case, Crosby still does great things at age 36, and plays an amazing game up-and-down the ice. Someday he'll go out too, but not next year. This summr he'll be skating hard near his hometown of Cole Harbor, Canada. Jeff Carter will be going back to Los Angles, rich, floating in the glow of a career well done. Very many new players will be trying to get into the NHL, so they too can revel in its traditions and history. I like that, in a world that is now always changing too fast.


Not Trampis said...

Mate that is ice hockey not hockey.
close but no cigar

David Appell said...

LOL. Got it.