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Jan Snyder goes “Wizard of Oz” Hockey Style, and Lisa Ovens gets serious, however briefly, with a quote and numbers (and a Don Cherry suit!). It’s a Stanley Cup Final game three extravaganza!


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Game One

Lisa Ovens
Thursday, May 29th, 2008

We begin with the Don Cherry Suit Watch...

Techno colored Don. I am positive I had bikini and matching short set in this material when I was kid in the Seventies.

The Quote

I am sure most people out there have memorized meaningful quotes, and have them on tap, ready to say when appropriate. Or the quotes are typed out and stuck on computer monitors or pinned to a fridge with a souvenir magnet. Since Game Two in Detroit, I've had a quote stuck in my head. It’s a fantastic sentence, and it can be applied to so many situations in our lives, sport related and non sport related.

The quote is from Red Wings coach, Mike Babcock. However, he said it back in the 2003 Stanley Cup Finals as coach of the Ducks. The “Cinderella” Ducks had lost game one and game two in New Jersey, against the Devils. In the presser following the game, Babcock said...

“Your Work ethic has got to equal the opportunity.”

Babcock was commenting on the poor play of his team. And those Ducks has sailed through the first three rounds, too. It wasn’t until game three, at home that the Ducks won in that final series. In fact they won all three of their home games before being shut out in New Jersey in Game Seven, ultimately losing the cup to the Devils.

When you look at it, last night’s game three was such an important win for both the Red Wings and the Penguins. But it was the Penguins effort that managed to equal the opportunity. Either that or it was the energized hometown crowd of 22,000 (that includes the 5000 fans outside Mellon Arena, watching on the big screen) pumping up the Pens.

Mule et MUEL

Props must be given to the Wings “Mules”: Johan “The Mule” Franzen and Mikael Sa-MUEL-sson”. Both potted a goal in the hostile “Sea of Antarctica”, otherwise known as the “White Out” of Pittsburgh. These two guys and their goals kept the Wings in the game, even though they eventually lost 3-2.

Mighty White Outs!!

And speaking of white outs, I caught a snippet of Jim Rome’s radio show, Wed. morning, and he was not a fan of white outs and didn’t think the Pens should be doing it at this point in the series. I have to disagree.  If only for the for the folks at home watching, it’s a sight to see a unified group of thousands in one big room, all wearing the same thing cheering their heads off for their home team. Well, at least for this fan: let’s face it; it’s hard to do that for the Canucks when we’ve had so many colors over the years, it’s impossible to get everyone on the same page. (Especially those “Flying V” jersey wearers – they love them yellow, orange and black uni’s to pieces!) And speaking of the Canucks, it was nice to see Trevor Linden at Mellon Arena. It looked like he was having a heck of a conversation with Gary Bettman.

Red Wings Power and TV Numbers

Over the years, The Red Wings have had an almost natural “Red Out” going, regular season or playoffs, take your pick. And their presence in this year’s Stanley Cup Final has sure helped boost TV ratings for hockey in the United States.

According to the Associated Press, game one of the Final Round was the highest rated and most watched S.C. final game telecast in six years (2.3 million viewers- that ought to make Canadian hockey fans happy). Okay, let’s do some math – 2008 minus six years equals 2002. Go figure... that was the last time the Wings were in the Finals, taking out the Carolina Hurricanes in five games.

(Any team would be intimidated just by these championship bottles. Photo courtesy of long time Red Wings fan, and former Michiganer, AJ. She'll be a subject in an upcoming column)

Not to take anything away from Sidney Crosby, his Penguins and the excitement and hype they’ve brought to the table these last few years, but the Detroit Red Wings and their large and dedicated following pack a lot of punch in the Hockey World. It's been a long lasting punch, too.

And, the Wings will be packin’ the punch for game four on Saturday, you can be darn sure.

Columnist, Jan Snyder’s very own Jan Snyder is flying out to Pittsburgh for Game Four – woohoo!! I told her she might have to pack some ear plugs, considering the loud and constant ROAR in Mellon Arena. Jan’s response...

 “If I can see Kid Rock and Def Leppard without ear plugs, I won’t need them for the game!”

My bad, I forgot this lovely, hockey lovin’ lady and writer seriously rocks out at like, 10 odd concerts a year!!!

 Have a great trip, Jan...We’ll all be anxiously waiting for your “report from the field”!

Three more days to hockey...and counting...

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