You’re sitting in a crowded arena. Players are skating everywhere. The orchestra of the crowd drowns out all other noises. You focus on the game, concentrating intently on where the puck goes. Your team carries it into the offensive zone; they get setup. You feel the energy in the arena start to grow. A shot rings off the post – ohh! – your team recovers. They keep cycling; buzzing now. They continue to take shots, the goalie standing on his head. The defense starts to breaks down. A cross-ice pass finds its way past a defender and onto a teammates stick; he takes the shot – SCORRRREEEEEEE!!! The crowd erupts; the bench explodes; and the goal-scorer throws his arms in the air, celebrating his contribution to the team.
That moment, that excitement, that thrill, is what hockey is to me.
It’s a game of passion, of energy, and respect. Even players that fight each other one day may shake hands or have lunch together the next.
It’s also a game of skill. Players train tirelessly day in and day out to become the very best that they can be. They pull off amazing no-look passes and amazing no-look goals, and they dive to keep the puck in the zone. They snipe the puck past the goalie with hardly a sliver amount of room available to them and they perform filthy dekes that make you feel dirty afterwards. And don’t even get me started on what goalies can do.
But most of all, hockey is a game of tradition; of playoff handshakes and beards. Of hats raining down on the ice and in some cases, octopi. It is a quest for Lord Stanley’s gold and it is every player’s dream to complete.
What it’s not is game of brutality: of vulgarity and violence. It is a game of passion from both the players and the fans, and that is why I love it. And that is why I am writing this blog. To share with you guys my passion for a sport and also a team that I believe to be the greatest in the NHL; the Philadelphia Flyers.
They are a team with a distinguished history and reputable past, and the legacy of a founder to live up to. They are also the team that I cheer for the most. And whether or not you agree with the points that I have to make, I just hope you enjoy reading my articles.