"Ha Ha! We Took it to You! You Couldn't Get it Out of Your Zone All Night. We Were Aggressive, We Didn't Let You Penetrate!"
Congratulations to the Carolina Hurricanes on their thrilling 4-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres in Game 7 of the NHL's Eastern Conference Finals and on reaching their second Stanley Cup Finals in five years. I am not what you would call a "hockey buff" (or, for that matter, a "Civil War Buff", like Keith Hernandez), but I still enjoy the thrillride that is the NHL Playoffs. Of course, with this year's tournament airing way out there on the Outdoor Life Network (over on channel 122 for us Time Warner Cable subscribers), it is easy to forget that the hockey even exists anymore. I used to take in many playoff games, just by checking out ESPN late at night and getting hooked into some random matchup of west coast teams--who could forget that classic first round series between the Colorado Avalanche and the Minnesota Wild back in 2003? These days, for me to watch the playoffs, a confluence of events must occur: (i) nothing good is on TV (between Idol and Lost, and of course, the Mets, this has not happened lately), (ii) I remember there is a playoff game on, (iii) my wife doesn't object to me turning on a sport that neither of us knows anything about and (iv) the game is not already a blow-out. Well, notwithstanding the awesome back-to-back-to-back-to-back episodes of The Office on NBC last night (I definitely had to watch some of that), I was interested in watching Game 7 between Carolina and Buffalo. Regardless of our level of interest, there really is nothing like a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. To me, the level of intensity and edge-of-your-seat action is unparalleled. Also, everyone must admit that the Stanley Cup is, by far, the coolest trophy in all of sports--so prized and special that it has its own appointed handlers who accompany it wherever it goes (and it goes a lot of places, with each player on the winning team is entitled to custody of the Cup for one day). Last night's game was especially good, as the game was tied 2-2 going into the third period, and remained that way until Rod Brind'Amour's power play goal put the 'Canes ahead for good. As for the finals, though I have kind of adopted Carolina as my favorite this year, I may have to root for Edmonton, just so the Cup can return to Canada for the first time since Montreal won it all the way back in 1993. It doesn't matter, so long as the series goes 7 games, and I remember where to find it on TV.
Speaking of sports that aren't popular in the US, the 2006 FIFA World Cup begins in Germany one week from today. Even though our own Team USA is currently 5th in the World Rankings, nobody is expecting anything special from the team, and with Italy and the Czeck Republic in our Group, it is reasonably possible we won't advance out of the Group. Still, I look forward to heading to one of those Anglo-centric pubs here in the City, to enjoy a pint of Guinness and be able to cheer on the "real" Yanks overseas. There should be plenty to blog about there.
Finally, I am very excited that the cable modem is being hooked up out East. Now I can download internet porn from the Hamptons!!! Oh, yeah, and blog from out there too. Have a good weekend!!