Sunday, May 13, 2012

Bandwagoning into the Conference Finals

Since the Bruins have been knocked out, and since I enjoy hockey and the NHL in general - especially the playoffs - I have reflected on the teams I chose to bandwagon when the Bruins are gone and why, if I can pinpoint it. Many of the reasons don't make sense, are really silly, are so pointless it's ridiculous, or are just flat out stupid. Below I'll try to figure out which teams to root for in each series by going through my thought process on how much I like or don't like each team.

East

New Jersey Devils

Pros:
  • Mark Fayne is from Nashua, NH.
  • I was a really big fan back in 2000 when they won the Cup
  • I used to really love Brodeur, and still do love Elias, Sykora
  • Zach Parise is pretty awesome
  • They didn't cause any trouble for the Bruins this past season
  • They no longer play a trap game
Cons:
  • The more successful they are, the less likely it is that Parise will sign elsewhere (BOSTON) in the off-season.
  • They have won the Cup most recently out of any other teams left, and have won more Cups recently overall (1995, 2000, 2003). 
  • They're an Eastern Conference rival of Boston
New York Rangers

Pros:
  • They beat the Capitals, so I am grateful 
  • 24/7 showed that some of them are very likable
  • I think it's cute that Tortorella, Fedotenko, and Richards are all re-united from the 2004 Tampa championship team (that I loved)
  • Tortorella's ridiculousness in general, such as continuously saying shit that gets him fined by the NHL and continuing to do it anyway
Cons:
  • They're an Eastern Conference rival of Boston
  • They're an Original Six rival of Boston
  • I don't normally notice overall sports fans of cities (usually just sports fans of hockey teams in certain cities is what I recognize), but I can already tell New York sports fans will potentially annoy the shit out of everyone if the Rangers.
  • I didn't like when Gaborik left Minnesota for New York, because I have traditionally hated the Rangers for being the Yankees of hockey: trying to buy championship teams. However, this doesn't really apply anymore because of the salary cap.
  • One of the Bruins games I went to this year was on Valentine's Day, and the Rangers shut out the Bruins. I did not appreciate that one bit.
  • There's a Staal (however this one isn't as bad as the other ones.)
West


Los Angeles Kings


Pros:
  • Their AHL team is the Manchester Monarchs and half the team has played for these Sparkle Cats at one point or another. (Even though I'm not an AHL or Monarchs fan, I support all things New Hampshire).
  • Dustin Brown and most of the team are pretty likable
  • Jonathan Quick is great
  • They beat the Canucks in the first round
  • The Bruins were able to beat them in an important regular season game, so I have no grudges there
  • They have never won a Cup, and I have a soft spot for newbies (only if the Bruins are out, that is).
  • Their twitter account is great
Cons:
  • That Cartman "Let's Go Kings" thing is really annoying
  • I still call cheat on that clock freeze incident from the regular season against the Blue Jackets
  • Mike Richards once broke David Krejci's wrist
  • Richards and Jeff Carter in general still have a bit of Philly stink on them
  • I was sad they beat the Blues; they could have at least drawn that series out a little more since I liked both teams so much

Phoenix Coyotes

Pros:
  • They have never won a Cup, either
  • Shane Doan has never won anything
  • Derek Morris was awesome in Boston
  • Ray Whitney is pretty cool too
  • Rusty Klesla was the first and only Blue Jackets player I was ever obsessed with
Cons:
  • The thought of a team owned by the NHL winning the NHL's championship just doesn't sit well with me
  • They employ Raffi Torres
  • They employ Biz Nasty
  • I don't know why, but Mike Smith just bugs me.
  • I really disliked them back when Roenick played for them
Conclusion
Taking into consideration things I cannot really explain, like "for some reason, I just don't like Doughty and I can't explain why", I choose the Kings in the West and the Devils in the East. I'd like the Devils to go all the way and hope that Mark Fayne brings the Cup to Nashua...but I'm also okay with the Senior Sparkle Cats (Kings) winning. I say right now that it's okay if Phoenix or New York wins too since I'm not really emotionally invested in any of the 4 teams that much right now, but once the series start, I will start to lean one way, and as it progresses, I will become more and more radical in whichever way I lean. 

My "predictions" are:
  • Kings in 5
  • Devils in 6
And yes, I know that my thought process is truly deluded.

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