Can you hear that bitchezzz? That’s the puck dropping on the ice for the first time. YEAH!
As a baseball chick, nothing takes the place for me as the “most wonderful time of the year” as baseball’s Opening Day. A close second, though, would be the start of hockey season. I’ve always felt that hockey was a better place holder for me to keep me occupied from the start and end of baseball season. Since the seasons typically overlap, if the Mets piss me off, I can have the Rangers to get my blood pressure even or at very least the same level. When the Mets aren’t playing in October, I can look forward to having more games during the week and a better redemption factor than football once a week (and let’s not get me started on redemption factors with Jets, okay?). Hmm. As a matter of fact, maybe I shouldn’t be watching sports, if all they do is make me miserable.
I came to football later in life. I always dabbled in my fandom, always for the Jets, but didn’t start to truly “get into it” till around 2002. That was also the year I started going to live games. I saw no coincidence that the year I started going to live hockey games was also the year I consider myself becoming a true fan, which was in 1988.
I was a contemporary of John Vanbiesbrouck, Brian Leetch and Tony Granato. I remember the Ogrodnick-Kisio-Mullen line. My heart was broken when Granato was later traded for Bernie Nicholls (what the what?).
I was across the street from the Garden when Mark Messier hoisted the Cup for the Garden Faithful. I partied in the streets of New York City after that moment.
I gave up on hockey, after their strike year. I was done with it. I was tired of putting energy into a product that wasn’t caring enough for its fans. My dad warned me though, “You’ll be back…That kid Lundqvist…his jersey will be hanging from the rafters after he’s done.” Before I knew it, I was back, as fate would have it, after the Mets broke my heart in 2007. (And have I mentioned how much I LOOOOOVE Henrik Lundqvist now???)
The joys of being a Mets, Jets and Rangers fan: I have three chances a year to get my heart broken. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Some people don’t understand being a hockey fan. I can tell you this: go to a live game. Find a rooting interest. Just do it. I can’t watch hockey on TV since I’m an old lady with slowing reflexes but I can tell you that watching on TV takes away from the game, and watching live is an experience in and of itself. Just do it. Then make the decision if you are a hockey fan or not.
The Rangers won’t have a home game till later in the month…but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy yourself in the meantime.
There will be a viewing party tomorrow at 12:30 till 3:30 at Local West, the Beer Garden at 1 Penn Plaza, to see the Rangers open their season in Sveeden, ya, against the Los Angeles Kings. May the best Richards (Mike or Brad, ha ha) win!
In the meantime, my NYR partner-in-crime, @sfmerkakis, and I are trying to drum up interest to see the Rangers play the Icelanders at the Mausoleum on the 15th. Who’s with us??? We like to drink and make fun of the team. Actually, it’s not much different from going to a baseball or football game with me.