Day 1 – May 2, 2010 – The Start of a Journey

As a sports fan growing up on Long Island, hockey was easily the fourth (and potentially the fifth or sixth – taking into account golf and lacrosse) most popular sport to follow and play. Yet, last weekend, on a rainy and cold day, in spite of it being the first weekend of the NBA playoffs, game 5 of the Chicago Blackhawks/Nashville Predator series caught my attention. As Chicago scored with 14 seconds remaining and then won in overtime, I found myself, a diehard NBA guy, cheering out loud, raising my arms and screaming “YES” when Hossa scored the game winner.

In the moments after, as I flicked through my cable channels looking for another playoff game, I began to wonder,” What the hell are you doing? Hockey???” But as a lifelong believer in trusting your instincts, it hit me that I wanted to talk about hockey the next day at work like I grew up playing it every day on a pond in Minnesota; like the first pictures of me included a knit Montreal Canadians beanie; and that my first visit to the dentist came as a result of catching a slap shot in the teeth as my dad recounted a Guy Lafluer game winner. Boiled down, I wanted to learn everything about the game. And so the seeds for an adventure were planted.

What would my life be like if for the next year I ate, drank and breathed hockey? Would I still be as fascinated by this sport that moves at breakneck speed? Could I talk hockey intelligently with seasoned fans? Would my dentist be excited or concerned?

So…starting today I will be the puck, to paraphrase Caddyshack (while working a 9-to-5 job and being a great husband and dad). My goal is straightforward: to learn about the players, the characters, the rituals and the history of this sport that has completely captured my imagination. But not just from my laptop or television. I want to learn by talking with the people that love the game and pass it from generation to generation (the fans), those that shape it (the players, team professionals/owners, the League), and those that bring it into our lives every day (the media that cover it).

And on a more personal level, I want to understand what it feels to fly around a rink, skate backwards, face a shot on goal, take a faceoff, and even get checked into the boards.

In a matter of minutes on a rainy April afternoon, hockey captured my imagination. I am excited to see how much it will change my life over the next 365 days. Please join me on this journey and help me. Suggests people that you think I should talk to, tell me stories about how hockey has affected you, and encourage me in any way possible.

Now let’s drop the puck and get this game started!!!!

About these ads

Leave a comment

Filed under Hockey, Sports

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s