Monday, February 18, 2008

That Priceless Feeling

A lot has happened since my last post, all those 18 days ago. When I posed the question "Buyers or Sellers", the Isles were a mere 2 games into their eventual 7 game losing streak. Each loss that followed only served to make my question less relevant. I was ready to SELL, SELL, SELL! A bag of pucks for Comrie? Sold! New t-shirt guns for Sillinger? Done and done.

I'll admit, I was ready to write-off the season. A big contributor to that feeling was the Giants victory in Super Bowl XLII. What does one have to do with the other, you ask? Well, neck-and-neck with my love for Long Island's hockey team is my devotion to NJ's Big Blue. I didn't miss one snap from the Giants 2007 season, and only a handful over the past several years. And while I'd always take a Stanley Cup over a Super Bowl win, I was in a state of constant euphoria ever since Eli hit Plaxico with the go-ahead TD. I barely noticed that the Isles kept on losing, as I spent all my free time watching Super Bowl highlights and reliving that amazing game in my mind.

Finally, by last weekend I made my way back to reality and what I found was depressing. Not only the losing streak. The Giants reminded me of what it can feel like to be a fan of a winner. As crazy as I got watching the Giants win it all, I can only imagine the feeling if (and hopefully when) the Isles bring the Cup back to LI. Facing the dim truth that we are realistically a long way from experiencing that feeling made me...sad. There's no other word for it.

I was 7 years old when we last won the Cup. I have memories of those days, but was far too young to have any real appreciation for it. The Super Bowl reminded me that, for a die-hard fan, you can't put a price on a championship. As much as the Giants' win took my short-term focus away from hockey, it's now increased my appetite for the Stanley Cup.

So even though we've rebounded a bit with three wins in a row, including a dominating performance against Atlanta, I'm still ready to sell. I'm willing sacrifice the next few seasons if it's clear we are moving in the right direction towards building a winner. I don't want to waste too may of DPs prime years, but I don't want to continue to cheer for a team where a first round playoff exit is considered successful. As a fan, all I can do is hope the Snow/Wang/Nolan braintrust has a plan. I can hope that Wang is not only interested in getting the Lighthouse project done, and that he really is committed to building a winner on Long Island. I can hope that I will get to re-live the euphoria I felt two weeks ago, as our Captain of the future lifts the Stanley Cup over his head in front of my disbelieving eyes.


Islanders Outsider said...

Still ready to sell after four in a row? I'm guessing that today's thriller hasn't changed your mind either. It's true no matter how you slice it that another first-round playoff exit can't be considered anywhere near a success. I'd like to think that the core of young players the Isles have now would enable a quick rebuild. It's not as though they need to start from scratch. There are some good pieces here.


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