Letter to Toronto Maple Leafs fans from Montreal


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!

 

 

Published by DCMontreal

DCMontreal - Deegan Charles Stubbs - is a Montreal writer born and raised who likes to establish balance and juxtapositions; a bit of this and a bit of that, a dash of Yin and a soupçon of Yang, some Peaks and an occasional Frean and maybe a bit of a sting in the tail! Please follow DCMontreal on Twitter and on Facebook, and add him on Google+

4 thoughts on “Letter to Toronto Maple Leafs fans from Montreal

  1. “There’s only one thing you raise a banner for, and that’s a legitimate Stanley Cup championship.”

    So playing the same amount of rounds and the same amount of games in a series doesn’t count as a legitimate Stanley Cup championship?

    I think you’re just deluding yourself into feeling better about Montreal’s horrendous performance against Ottawa. If this was a sham, imagine how it will be in a “real” season. Perhaps another 29th place finish?

    I say that in mockery. The regular season is mostly a grind. These are professional athletes – 48 games or 82, they’re in shape to handle it. Injuries are random and unpredictable. For every player that gets injured at the end of the 82-game schedule, one comes back from an injury sustained during the first quarter. I bet if you pulled up the standings from the best 10 seasons and compared teams’ places after 48 games with placing after 82 games, you wouldn’t see much of a difference.

    And based on your logic, I guess the 94-95 Devils don’t deserve their Cup ring either? That was also lockout-shortened to 82 games.

    Grow up and stop being butthurt, kid.

    1. Dook,

      Thanks for your long message. You’ve missed the point; my post was a sweetening of sour grapes. Of course a Stanley Cup is a Stanley Cup. If it bothers me that teams hang divisional and conference banners it must be the 24 Stanley Cup banners hanging down the street from me affecting my rationale.

      As for injuries I agree with you fully; all teams have them, they are never an excuse.

      Are the two short season championships legitimate? Of course, even if they will always have a * after them. Would I rather have the Montreal Canadiens win their 25th Cup after a full season? Yep! Would I have taken it this year? You bet!

      As for calling me a kid, thanks! Mind you I am old enough to remember when the Canadiens were the dominant force in the league, not merely competitive. Ah, those were the days!

  2. “There’s only one thing you raise a banner for, and that’s a legitimate Stanley Cup championship.”

    So playing the same amount of rounds and the same amount of games in a series doesn’t count as a legitimate Stanley Cup championship?

    I think you’re just deluding yourself into feeling better about Montreal’s horrendous performance against Ottawa. If this was a sham, imagine how it will be in a “real” season. Perhaps another 29th place finish?

    I say that in mockery. The regular season is mostly a grind. These are professional athletes – 48 games or 82, they’re in shape to handle it. Injuries are random and unpredictable. For every player that gets injured at the end of the 82-game schedule, one comes back from an injury sustained during the first quarter. I bet if you pulled up the standings from the best 10 seasons and compared teams’ places after 48 games with placing after 82 games, you wouldn’t see much of a difference.

    And based on your logic, I guess the 94-95 Devils don’t deserve their Cup ring either? That was also lockout-shortened to 82 games.

    Grow up and stop being butthurt, kid. Lockouts happen. They change the length of a season, but not the game itself.

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