By John Hubbuch
I'm afraid I missed the Chicago Blackhawks bandwagon. It certainly wasn't the first one. In fact, if you lined up all the bandwagons I have missed, it would look like the Dan Ryan on a rainy Friday night. Prior bandwagons on which I failed to get a seat include rolfing, crystals, LSD, Alinea, American Idol, Taylor Swift, reality TV, beet salad, Melissa McCarthy, sorbet vodka, Facebook, Twitter, the Arab Spring, staycations and pets.
I tried to get on the Blackhawks bandwagon, but I have to go to bed by 9 p.m., so the games were only half over when I would retire for the evening. That assumes they didn't go to overtime, and it seemed like almost every game did. There is also the problem of seeing the teeny little puck go into the net. Most of the time I could only tell there was a goal when the players celebrated, and sometimes they celebrated too early and there wasn't a goal.
In addition, the players keep coming on and off the ice every a couple of minutes. It's confusing. Most goals were a result of deflections, bounces, crazy caroms — dare I say luck? The announcers got excited whenever there was a "power play." I couldn't figure out why. No team ever scored.
However, I think I understand why the Blackhawks seized our attention. The games are fast paced and unpredictable. The alternative is to watch the brutal Cubs and White Sox. The lengthy rest periods give you time to do laundry, shop, pay bills and get ready for bed. Although I prefer basketball and soccer, hockey is the perfect sport for those white people who don't like tattoos or corn rows and prefer their sports heroes to speak English, albeit the Canadian version.
The players are neither too tall nor too short. The fellas with their beards draw the attention of the ladies. It's a great sport to watch in bars. It's a little like cricket in that most fans never played the game and don't know the rules, so you can make stupid observations with impunity.
Most importantly, the Blackhawks were winners. In the modern age winning is everything. No one wants to watch losers. The most, the best, the highest, the largest, the richest. Winning is the universal coin of the realm, and the Chicago Blackhawks are the Stanley Cup Champions.
Good for them.
Too bad I missed it.