Dear Maple Leafs fans,
It’s been a few days now since your heartbreaking loss at the hands of the dastardly Boston Bruins. While, given the circumstances of the Leafs late collapse in game seven, no words can make the hurt go away, one question may ease things a little. Did you really want to win the Stanley Cup this year?
Did you really want to win the Stanley Cup this year?
Under normal circumstances the answer to that is a no brainer: of course we want to win the cup, we’re hockey fans, it’s what we do.
But the 2013 NHL season will forever be marked by asterisks. It was almost cancelled, then when an agreement was finally struck a 48 game schedule, just a little more than half a real season, was begun. C’mon, 48 games … can the winning team really claim bragging rights?
C’mon, 48 games … can the winning team really claim bragging rights?
When the Montreal Canadiens succumbed to injuries and a general lack of size and were ousted in the first round by the Ottawa Senators, not even making it to game seven, I found myself wondering if this Year of the Asterisk loss was such a bad thing. Don’t get me wrong, had the Habs won the cup, I wouldn’t have suggest declining the title. Would I want the their elusive twenty-fifth Stanley Cup to be awarded in this delayed, truncated season? Ideally no.
So look on the bright side, our teams can take time to allow injuries to heal while those still contending for a pseudo-Stanley Cup Championship are beating the daylights out of each other. I say we’re better off out of this one. I recall around the time the lockout was settled it was suggested by some that the Stanley Cup should not be awarded, that some other trophy might be used instead. At the time it didn’t hit home, but as the mini-season wore on, and even though the Canadiens were doing well at that point, I started to think that it wasn’t fair to all the former winners of Lord Stanley’s cup to present it under these circumstances.
There’s only one thing you raise a banner for, and that’s a legitimate Stanley Cup championship.
It’s a little like teams that make a great noise about hoisting a division or conference banner. There’s only one thing you raise a banner for, and that’s a legitimate Stanley Cup championship.
Enjoy your summer, and we’ll see you next year for a real hockey season!