Monday, May 17, 2010

Hockey History

On Friday May 14th, 2010 the Philadelphia Flyers beat the Boston Bruins 4-3 completing one of the greatest comebacks in sports history. Not only did the Flyers come back to win the series after being down 3-0 but they also came back and won Game 7 after being down 3-0. It was truly one of the craziest things that has ever happened in sports.

This marked only the 4th time in professional sports history that a team had come back from a 3-0 series deficit. The only other times this has happened was in 1942 when the Leafs came back to beat the Red Wings, 1975 when the Islanders came back to beat the Pittsburgh Penguins and in 2004 when the Red Sox rallied to beat the Yankees.

Truly this was a special series. I watched most of the games but none of them in their entirety, except game 7 which for multiple reasons I will no doubt remember for the rest of my life. In honor of this monumental occasion I have decided to rip off Bill Simmons and do a "Retro Running Diary" of the game.


6:45pm One of the reasons I will always remember this game is because of Hog Tails. Hog Tails is a Texas BBQ restaurant in Waterloo that makes the greatest barbecue I have ever had. My buddy Tristan told me about it earlier in the day and without much convincing I told him I would go with him to get some. Best decision I have ever made.

7:21pm We got back to my place just in time to catch the National anthem. The game starts but I am barely paying attention because I am way too concentrated on this food. Chicken breast, pulled pork, coleslaw and french fries plus a drink for under $20 and everything is amazing. I hardly look up as Michael Ryder scored the 1st goal of the game just over 5 minutes in.

At this point one of the announcers make the comment, "the Flyers really miss Boucher." Those are words I never thought I would hear.

Kyle: "Game 7s are usually always close are always blowouts."
Tristan: "Yeah its either like 6-0 or 2-1"
Me: "What other kind of games are there?"
[Blank stares]

7:28pm We finish eating and wait for a commercial break to head over to Tristan's place where a buddy of his, who happens to be a die hard Flyers fan, is waiting to watch the game.

7:29pm We pull into Tristan's driveway and his buddy Kyle is standing outside having a cigarette and is obviously rattled.

Kyle: "Have you seen this f*cking game?! There have been like 40 hits and its not even 7 minutes in! This is gonna be unreal! Shitty goal though" says Kyle without taking a breath. I normally don't like to use exclamation points but in this case they are needed.

7:33pm We have all just cracked our first beer and are just getting settled when Lucic snipes a a weak one five-hole on Michael Leighton of the Flyers. 2-0 for the Bruins and Kyle is pissed. His hat gets thrown into the wall and his Blackberry is going off with people messaging him to chirp him about the goal.

Kyle even gets a message from his mom on Facebook saying, "ouch." When your mom is chirping you via Facebook you know you're having a rough day.

7:38pm Lucic scores again. Kyles hat gets thrown into the wall again. His mom chirps him via Facebook again. They show a shot of the Wachovia Center where thousands of fans are watching the game on the Jumbotron and are really pissed about whats happening. I never got that by the way. Why would you pay money to go to an arena to watch a hockey game on a Jumbotron? Why not go to a bar or just stay home?

Tristan points out that one of the guys in the crowd was giving the double middle finger to the Jumbotron.

7:41 The Flyers finally get on the board as James van Riemsdyk scores to at least make the game competitive. Now its Kyle's turn to chirp everyone and stand up and fist pump like he was Tiger Woods after banging a cocktail waitress.

7:50 The 1st period is finally over. Kyle goes outside for a smoke. I go downstairs to take a piss that I had been holding in since we got there and Tristan goes to get more beer.

Me: "Where's the bathroom I gotta take a piss?"
Tristan: "Yeah right you probably wanna go Jermaine Oneal"

'Jermaine Oneal' is slang for jerking off as his nickname was JO. This has nothing to do with anything I just find it hilarious and wanted to somehow work it in.

When I come back upstairs I hear Kyle yelling outside. He dropped his cigarette under the porch and is on the ground looking for it. And they say smoking is addictive.

Me: "You have a whole other pack why would you go through all that effort for one cigarette?"
Kyle: "Cause it was like a full cigarette man. Can just be leaving those on the ground."

8:05 The 2nd period begins and the Flyers are all over the Bruins. After what seems like 48 chances the Flyers finally score. Scott Hartnell is the goal scorer. For some reason the camera pans to Rasheed Wallace who is in attendance and wearing a Flyers jersey and hat.

Kyle: "As if he is wearing that stuff in Boston when he plays for the Celtics."
Tristan: "As if hes at a hockey game."

8:17 The Flyers score again and its 3-3. The Wachovia Center is going almost as mental as Kyle is. He throws his hat again but this time out of joy and not frustration. At this point he is already making plans on going to Montreal to see a game.

The rest of the 2nd period goes by without much incident. Kyle spends about 15 minutes looking for a pizza cutter which Tristan later finds on the computer desk in the other room. That was seriously the highlight of the rest of the period for me.

9:07 The 3rd period has just started and another one of Tristan's buddies shows up, also named Kyle, with a friend of his whose name I never got. He introduced himself but I couldn't hear because Tristan had put on some Lil Wayne song about football at the behest of Kyle.

One of the lines in the song is "Wide reciever catching hailmary's I'm Christian, 5 and out hydraul yes we stick shiftin." Kyle will go on to repeat this line about 20 times and describe it as not only "sick", "dirty" and "nasty" but also "unreal."

9:08 It turns out that this guy with no name who will henceforth be referred to as Grumps has serious money on the Bruins and is beyond pissed at whats happening.

Grumps: "WTF as if this is happening."
Kyle: 'I know this is great right?"
Grumps [death stare]
Kyle: "Oh you're not cheering for Philly?"

I still don't know if this was intentional or not. Either way it was hilarious.

9:11 At this point Grumps revealed that he also bet on the Penguins. He is now my go to guy for betting as I will simply ask him who he thinks will win and then pick the other team. This guy makes Charles Barkley and Krusty look like Sam 'Ace' Rothstein.

9:24 The Flyers score their 4th consecutive goal and take a 4-3 lead. Joy from Kyle and a river of profanity from Grumps.

At this point Tristan has checked out and is now focused on the rest of the night and trying to get people to come to the Vault which is a club/bar in Waterloo where he promotes. It isn't a bad place and if you like drunk/easy chicks and house music then there is no place better on a Friday night.

9:54 The final seconds tick away as the Flyers complete one of the greatest comebacks in sports history. Kyle is going crazy and is on his phone texting everyone to rub it in their face. Grumps is furious and starts drinking harder and talking about trying to fight people at the bar. Kyle #2 and Tristan could care less and I am too shocked to really say anything.

I get up and tell everyone I am going home to take a nap. When I get home I lay down thinking I will wake up in about an hour and then go out for the night.

10:30am I wake up and realize that I have just slept for 12 and a half hours. Then I wonder if the night before actually happened. Did the Flyers really pull it off and was Hog Tails real or did I imagine it?

Walk into the living room and see that the TV is on TSN. Highlights of the game are showing and the final score of 4-3 pops up to prove it happened and sitting on the coffee table is my container from Hog Tails with a couple french fries and a few bites of pulled pork left. I had my proof.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...


Mike Richards, you SOB, what a beauty.