The passion begins…

Posted: September 13, 2008 in NHL

Since it is the offseason, I have time to paint the timeline of my hockey fandom, reminisce about how and when I became a fan and take things chronologically to today.  So, the passion begins…

On some Saturday night, in a winter about 34 years ago, I have vivid recollection.  “O Canada, terre de nos aieux…” A pudgy faced Francophone named Roger Doucet started.  To this day, I can replay his rendition of our national anthem in my head with his powerful voice echoing and almost giving me goosebumps.   Pretty impressive since I haven’t heard him in over 20 years.

Then, on with the Bleu Blanc et Rouge.  Back in the early 70s as a Canadian hockey fan, you had pretty much two choices.  The Habs and the Leafs.  At the time I was watching, there really was no comparison.  The Canadiens were fast, skilled, and just a joy to watch.  I would still watch the Leafs on Saturday, but it was only a consolation for the thirst until they were back on TV again.

I learned a lot from this guy.  When you are 5 or 6 and a cartoon puck is there to tell you about the nuances of what you are watching, you are in pretty good shape.  The league would be well served to cater to these young fans again.  Who knows what they are watching now. 

Funny thing is, my team didn’t win the first year I was a hockey fan.  They got beat out by Gilbert Perreault and the Buffalo Sabres (He was a treat to watch by the way.).  That didn’t matter to me though.  From that first game on, I was Ken Dryden in net, Yvon Cournoyer or Guy Lafleur as a skater for the next several years on the road, on the ice, or even the table top rod hockey we would get for Christmas.  I was a  Canadiens fan.  With the group they had assembled, it wouldn’t be tough to be a fan, starting the next year, they were one of the most dominant teams in history for four seasons.



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