Sunday, April 22, 2007

Washing my hands

Well. It's been an interesting day or so, hasn't it?

As a hockey fan, it's been hugely entertaining as a playoff series to observe the ups and downs of the series.

As a Flames fan, it's kind of sucked, for obvious reasons. I hang out with more than enough people whose teams never made the playoffs to not appreciate our post-season run. But it hasn't been good. I'm more disappointed with yesterday's game on account of it feeling like one of those games which Playfair has had no control over. They've occurred quite often this season, sadly. Dude might not even be able to buy new suits over the summer... or have anywhere to wear them.

As a Flames blogger, I'm tired of this shit. I don't mind the groupthink so much, because honestly, it was really comforting to be able to hop online and bitch about the game, and not have to watch the gong show which was the third.

I am tired of reading my faves in the Flames blogosphere, and watching anonymice pour up out of the woodwork and readers who've been reading us for all of the last two weeks flood these guys with smug assertions about "at least our team is way more classy than that." Than what? It's the playoffs. Nobody is going to play with kid gloves on, and if the Wings can't play that game either, then maybe they should stay on the bench, and let the Wheel of Justice play for them.

It's a war of attrition. If it weren't, Holmstrom wouldn't have planted his ass in Kipper's face, there wouldn't be random grabbing and slashing by just about every player on the ice, Hasek wouldn't be trying for a Razzie. Last team standing wins, and if you don't plan on being standing at the end, then at least make the other guys fight for every inch they take.

On that level, I have no issues with what happened in the third period last night. I'm perhaps embarrassed that it got to that, rather than taking it to the Wings in terms of well, actually playing hockey. But I have no issues with the Calgary Flames having to make a statement about whether they want to be in the playoffs or not. (I think they said, Maybe. Which is a bit late. Oh well.)

Good sportsmanship? Is that what you show when your team wins the game anyways, and you still complain to our team's fans that their team was too dirty? Ad nauseam?

And hearing from these near-strangers that that our captain is not captain material? Have they done their homework at all? Isn't coming here basically what their homework should be? Have they been orbiting Uranus for the last five years? Just what do they know about Jarome Iginla?

I've watched this guy since we got Jarome Who? for Joe Who?, since we plopped him into our last playoff series of the 90s, and there is no better captain in the league. You haven't watched him patiently take time out of his personal life to chat to fans. You haven't watched him eschew most of the pre-game warmup to sign autographs for kids who have no greater hero. You haven't heard him stay positive and answer the same question over and over again cheerfully for every single dumbass reporter he has to talk to (and oh, god, that zillion-watt smile).

You haven't watched him blossom into a force for Canada in international play, and fucking pick up the Calgary Flames, and carry them where they need to go when it's time to go. And sure, I've watched him do that all too often. There is no one else currently playing I'd rather have captain the Flames, and anybody who thinks he doesn't deserve that honour is a fool. Rather, all too often, that honour doesn't deserve Jarome Iginla.

It's somewhat a bleak outlook for the Flames these playoffs admittedly. But when this series at least is over, Iggy will still be our captain and the heart of the team, and at least there'll be some peace and quiet around here. And amen to that.


  1. Nice. Opposing "fans" who judge their team's opponents that quickly are the same types who will yell that at team "sucks" before cheering on their own. In other words, someone who doesn't know hockey well enough to know when to cheer in the first place.

  2. Ooo! Ooo! Like the people who only clap or cheer when the Jumbotron tells them too.

  3. I don't care, I'll love Iggy forever.