Where to begin? The most important part of any story is the beginning. I used to do this trick for English classes; I’d start with the conclusion and then work my way towards it. No matter what you’re writing, you generally have an idea of where you want to end up. If you don’t, you’re probably wasting yours and everyone else’s time. The fun part, is the middle. That is where you get to meander and say ridiculous things. Maybe even swear a couple fucking times.
You need that solid opening. That hook. That attention grabber that keeps the reader interested and wanting to read every. next. word.
A pre-written conclusion. In the sports world, that’s where the dreams live. Every athlete ever has pictured his or herself at the end and on top. It’s the conclusion that they, we, all want. Ask any Blackhawks fan whether or not they think the Hawks would’ve won versus the Rangers. There’s no changing that drawn conclusion and it never even happened.
I guess that’s as good a place as any for me to begin. The ending of that season. A gut wrenching loss is a good way to teach yourself how to savor the victories you have. Even while right now, I’m in the middle of celebrating the third Stanley Cup championship I’ve been witness to, I can still recall the feelings of malcontent and depression that permeated for the rest of summer.
Flash forward to today and there couldn’t be a better one. We’ve seen three, but the good vibes are still fresh. Each one has their special little glimmer or moment.
2010 was Determination. 2013 seemed to be Destiny. 2015 is clearly Dynasty.
For being cup favorites through most of the season, I still find it hard to believe all the ways it wasn’t supposed to happen. Apparently people just don’t want to believe Corey Crawford is legit. There’s the two jackasses at 670 The Score who decided to insert themselves into not only the locker room, but the private life of one of the Hawks’ core, and almost seemed to hope it would tear the team apart. Patrick Kane’s broken clavicle. Finishing the playoffs with negative defensemen.
How the hell did this happen? Then, in what was almost a replay of shenanigans from 1938 when the Cup wasn’t present for the Black Hawks celebration, a goddamn supercell of storms rips through the Chicago, floods seemingly every street everywhere, and keeps the Keeper of the Cup from reaching the United Center without delay. Had the situation been hopeless, you know Philip Pritchard would’ve sank to the bottom with that Cup.
After the Kings series loss, I realized how much I hate the feeling of losing. Its right along with the Billy Beane line, “I hate losing. I hate it more than I love winning.”
From a fan’s perspective, albeit, maybe a shitty one – but it’s kind of a burden. I mean, we’d be equally as foolish to believe that the good times are going to last forever. So, damn it. It’s like a tease that you know is inevitable. There’s going to be another tear down of players. Now, UBER FAN FAVORITES will leave for probably sadder pastures and we’ll be left hoping they’re replaced with competent enough guys to keep this level of anticipation high.
Maybe that’s what I get for writing conclusions first. I punish myself by my expectations and visions of glory. I am Irish after all. It’s the same reason I get frustrated with games in October, even when I know damn well I shouldn’t.
It’s strange, but I almost feel that the fun time is already over. The regular season, the grueling playoffs, and then the Final…that’s our playground. Our theatre. We’re our most engaged when we’re screaming, or tapping away on Twitter game after game. Then, they win. We celebrate along with them that night…
They go away for their time with the Cup and unless you’re a selfie lunatic, you maybe go to one spot where it’s at and then you basically wait for the banner raising. No more cheering, no more anxious final seconds of the 3rd period. Not for a while at least. I’m jaded. I think I just need to watch Game 6, again.
It’s as good a place as any to begin.
Brennan really knows how to celebrate. He’s on twitter @midway_brennan