The big game. East Coast. Excited fans. Ear-piercing cheers. Crowded venue.
Anyone who knows anything about me knows that I’m not referring to the Super Bowl. I could care less about football…No, I’m referring to a game that already occurred today – an important game in which two of the best players in the league were front and center leading their squads and notching points.
Those two players: Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin. Arguably two of the best in the NHL. Though I am a true Minnesotan and sing along with pride to the MN Wild’s hockey anthem, I am not as devout a Wild fan as I should be. I blame that partly on the fact that many of the Wild’s players aren’t true Minnesotans (there’s a lot of Finnish players on the team…)and that often rubs me the wrong way. Thus, I’ve “adopted” another team (actually I have two adopted teams…more on that later…) as my fave…I fought it at first…denied that I liked them…rooted against them…and bad-mouthed them at times. Full circle. Here I sit, unashamedly admitting that I am a fan of the Pens (Pittsburgh Penguins).
Minnesota connections run deep on the Pittsburgh team…Off the top of my head, I know of three MN connections…Sid “the kid” Crosby, the Canadian phenomenon who has taken the NHL by storm spent a year of his “youth” playing at Shattuck St. Mary’s. Alex Goligoski, the Iron Ranger, played three years at the U of M and is now a consistently played D for the Pens. Jordan Staal (this may be a bit of a stretch, his MN connection is nothing to be proud of) was at Lutsen Resort in MN when he was arrested at his brother, Eric’s bachelor party. It’s not a good one, but it’s a connection nonetheless. I would dig up more connections, but I don’t have time to plug the entire Pens roster into HockeyDB.com. Besides these guys, I genuinely like Evengi Malkin, Sergei Gonchar, and Kris Letang.
I guess the reason for my confession is that both Ovechkin and Crosby will be making appearances at the 5-days-away-Winter-Olympic games in Vancouver and they will no doubt put on a show. I’m not going to cheer for Ovechkin or Crosby though. My MN loyalty and patriotism shine through a lot stronger and I will be cheering on the US men’s and women’s hockey teams, replete with MN players and connections.
1. Natalie Darwitz
2. Gigi Marvin
3. Jenny Potter
4. Erik Johnson
5. Zach Parise
6. David Backes
7. Jamie Langenbrunner
8. Paul Martin – Sadly will not be appearing in Vancouver due to an injury.
Enjoy the big game today, folks. I did.