Wednesday, June 04, 2008

What a Finish!

After you get done reading Rick Reilly's first piece for ESPN The Magazine, which is worth every word of it, simply because it lacks his usual arrogance and smugness (I'm not a big fan of the word "smug" tonight, but never mind), find the final seconds of tonight's Stanley Cup Final Game 6.

The Red Wings won the Cup - congratulations to them. Yet I want you to see the fever pitch at which this game came to a close, and just how near the Penguins came to tying the game, after being down two goals with under two minutes to play.

I actually reacted out loud - speaking only to myself, as nobody would hear me.

Incidentally, I've never seen a Conn Smythe trophy winner (that's the MVP, in case you didn't know) skate to his teammates with the hardware as Henrik Zetteberg did tonight. Good for him, but it was just strange. I remember Brian Leetch acting like the trophy barely existed when he won it in 1994. More often than not, players care about the Big Dog - the Cup. I love watching the roll call of who gets to skate with the Cup, and in what order. Of course, the Captain always gets the first touch. From there, it's up to him. When the Avalanche won in 2001, Captain Joe Sakic waited all of two seconds before handing the Cup to Ray Borque, who played 23 years before finally lifting it over his head. It's the most magnificent trophy ceremony in sports.

By the way, I've been thinking (sorry, it's scary). Hockey has Lord Stanley's Cup. Basketball has the Larry O'Brien Trophy. Football is of course the Lombardi Trophy. What is baseball's called? It doesn't have a name. I'd like to suggest one - the Yogi Berra Trophy. Yogi has been an ambassador for the game since coming to New York in 1947. He was in uniform until 1989 as a player, coach and manager. He holds numerous World Series records including games played and the most important one of all - most World Series Titles (10). Maybe you have a better name, but "World Series Trophy" doesn't cut it for me.

By the way, the Red Wings Wikipedia article already has the Cup title up, and they literally just won it. Impressive.

UPDATE: Have some video! Here are those final seconds of the game.

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