Shoot The Puck
The sports fan inside me has been in a constant state of evolution since my youngest days. First came the Syracuse basketball and football “Orangemen” as they were known (a nod to William of Orange, perhaps?); later, the Doug Flutie-led Boston College football team came a-courtin’. Eventually, Pedro Martinez arrived in Boston and roped me in, such that I began to pay daily attention to baseball. Tom Brady and his Patriot brethren weren’t far behind. Enough already! I don’t have the time for these games.
The NBA has been reasonably easy to avoid since the last days of Larry Bird. I broke down around 2008 and started watching the Celtics make their annual playoff runs, but once Paul Pierce got traded away, pro basketball returned to being mostly a bore and not something to care about.
Now there’s hockey. Having been tricked in my youth into thinking this was just bare-fisted boxing masquerading as a team sport, I have come to see its appeal: all that sprinting; the puck finesse; the checking and ability to avoid hits. And best of all is the possibility of ending a game seven playoff match in sudden-death. Even baseball, which features extra-inning walk-offs, doesn’t have sudden-death, where both the home team and visitor can end the game and their foe’s season with a score. The tension can be gripping.
Let’s hope there’s none of that tonight. I just don’t think I can take it.