We all know what time of year it is in the hockey world. Other than the Draft in any league, the playoffs is where you often find men weeping, and women wondering what the heck is going on. Granted, as proven by the lovely ladies on this site (and I do mean lovely, beautiful and talented. Sucking up never hurts) there are those females out there who know the ins and outs of the game as much as or more than men. That’s fine I am not here to judge who knows more. I am here to talk about the epidemic that plagues us all… BandWagoning
Yes, every year it affects millions of people. Bandwagoning not only affects the brain but has an ability to snap people’s ankles as they jump on and off this said ‘band’ wagon. As a side bar… why is it a band wagon. Shouldn’t it be called something with a sports team name in it?
Now that the first round of the NHL playoffs is over, and now that we enter the 2nd round of the AHL playoffs and the final
round of the CHL (WHL, OHL, QMJHL) playoffs, this epidemic is in full effect. And to be honest, it’s ok. I know I sit on my media perch sometimes, with a puffed up chest and a wagging of the finger at what fans do. But we media folk are bandwagon jumpers. Some teams are just cooler than others, sometimes you have allegiances with certain players and you want to see them succeed, and other times… it could be just travel. Sorry Ottawa 67’s. A 5 hour trip to watch game 3 and 4 is just too much mid week. Whatever the reason for an individual’s bandwagoning… it is just plain funny.
Sticking with the NHL only, this past weekend kicked off the second round where we saw some great hockey without the marquee teams of Vancouver, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Boston and Ottawa (I really like picking on this city don’t I). because I am such a big twitter wheel, or is that twitter tool… I got to talking with a bunch of people about their changing of alliances and pretty much going over to the dark side.
The most common reason why, has to do with our fathers. Admit it, your dad made you a fan of Team X. I have no shame in saying that my dad introduced me to the Blue and White of the Toronto Maple Leafs but I loved to hate them. I guess I fully turncoated the Leafs a few years leading up to the lockout when I realized how dumb it was for them to get rid of all this young talent to continually fill the seats while only ousting the Senators in the first round (there’s this Ottawa theme again). Unfortunately for the Leafs I wised up to their plan and said ‘nay nay. I will not promote a team that is only interested in merchandise sales and filling their pocketbooks’. But it was so much more than that, back to my dad, it was just awesome to root against him. He would get so pissed off, heated debates, the laughing the crying the raw emotion of father versus son. Heck, if he didn’t like it, he shouldn’t have
kept buying me jerseys of the other 29 NHL teams in the league. But to be fair, this can go well beyond your father. Heck I root for teams in the playoffs just to piss some people off ha ha. BOO L.A. KINGS!
That is just one reason, to hop on the bandwagon. Another, more common, reason or explanation for fans jumping on with other teams is the old, ‘if my team can not win the cup, then the team that beat them should win. This way we lost to the champs and it isn’t that bad.’ Does anyone else find that excuse laughable. It is like thinking, ‘so my girlfriend cheated on me, it is out of her system now, she wont do it again.’ Wise up will ya! Your team was just bad for a 4-7 game stretch. That logic is flawed beyond belief and you should all be ashamed to root for the team that knocked yours out. Especially if it is a hated rival. Identity crisis.
Then the third main reason to see the bandwagoners jump on is because you live there. Oh to think that for 82 games your team doesn’t matter, never been to one game. And then BAM! They make it to the playoffs, and even win the division, and now you decide it is the cool place to be… yeah I am specifically talking to you Phoenix. Hey, its ok. I am somewhat of a closet Phoenix fan. Know some buds in Arizona, I have their jersey and more importantly, who doesn’t wanna see Shane Doan succeed. The man is the definition of (input any type of soldier/fighter/leader reference you want) and at some point he deserves to have some playoff success.
The playoffs are what they are. Fun! Plain and simple. The Rivalries, the heroics and all those dillusional fans who come out of the
closet to cheer for teams that they never knew existed. Like all you Chicago Blackhawks fans from 2010. I’ve been a fan since the Ed Belfour rookie year… Best non Quebec goalie of my generation.
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