For more information regarding our move, please read the two last post published below.

21 July 2007

Why the Avs?

It's the slow news time of the NHL season, and since I just recently joined the BBeR family, I figured I'd post a little (Ok, more than a little) something about myself and my trek to becoming a hockey, NHL, and especially, Colorado Avalanche fan.

So how did it happen?

I don't know really. I wasn't exposed to hockey all that much during my formative years, but I definately remember one of the first hockey cards I ever saw being Joe Sakic in the blue Nords jersey. I remember wondering what those weird symbols were, you know the ones that looked like the ones on the Saints helmets. So I looked them up (in an antiquated tome of knowledge known as 'Encyclopedia Britanica) and learned a little about french-speaking parts of Canada, a little about hockey, and a little about the NHL.

Years passed, and growing up in Wyoming, the only pro team that was considered local was the Denver Broncos. They had a stud quarterback in Elway, were always decent, but always losing in the end. Still, there were some great seasons in there. I naively pledged to support all Colorado teams at this point in my life. In the interum, I still followed hockey, and the NHL and kinda kept my eyes on every team, but I still remember liking the uniqueness of the Nordiques. The name was different than anything else in pro sports. My first name is French, so that probably didn't hurt. I had unwittingly started down a long, winding road to an obsession that continues today.

Not long after my family relocated to south Mississippi, pro sports became really big in Denver. The Rockies and Avs were instant hits, and I dilagently followed their first few seasons. It was (and still is) easier to follow the Avs rather than the Rockies, due to them winning a lot out of the gate, plus that fact that I had a least a passing familiarity with the team and its players.
Anyway, by the time I was in high school, having never played the game, and only seen it on TV, I started trying to convince my younger brothers and friends what a great game it was. Roller-blading lead to pick-up up games of inline hockey in my drive-way.

Jump to college, and I'm able to follow the game more due to the freedoms that come with college life. I take a vested interest in the newest Avalanche players, notably Chris Drury and Milan Hejduk. Drury stood out to me with his lifelong tendancy to be a winner. My vested interest soon turned into full-blown fandom when the Avs continued to carve a swath through the NHL every year, coming close, but just a little short of the promised land. Then the Bourque trade and the pieces started to come together. So close.

The next year saw Blake join the team at the deadline and push the Avs into another gear. Victory! I even remember my mom calling me up during the SC Finals and asking me what Roy was doing skating out of the crease, turning over the puck, and putting the Avs in a hole. I didn't even know she knew what hockey was. I asked why she was watching, and she said because she knew it was important to me, since it's all I talked about the last month! She then stated that every time she tuned into the game, something bad happened. I remember screaming in a somewhat high-pitched voice "THEN STOP WATCHING!" Even when she was visiting my younger brothers and I during the weekend of Game 7, she sat on a couch in the back of the room so she couldn't see the game, and consequently jinx the outcome. Well, it worked. Yes, Avsnation, you have me to thank for that Cup in 2001. Me and my mom.

A couple of years later, I teamed up with some 'Yankees' and 'Canucks' that were going to the same college and we started an inline hockey league in 2003 that is still going today. I picked goalie because the league was in desperate need of netminders. Obsession number two kicked in to full gear. After getting married (and subsequently brainwashing my wife into being a hockey fan, but not an Avs fan), graduating with my Masters (finally), and relocating to Oklahoma, I finally got the chance to play ice hockey. It was a long strange trip, but I loved every second of it, even the Theo Fleury experiment. I started following Avstalk shortly after the lockout, then Jibbles, then DLS, and finally Draft Dodger. I figured if I was going to post a comment on each blog every day, I should just start writing one myself. That's how I hooked up with BBeR as the Avs "correspondent". Recently, a couple of those guys have teamed up with Mile High Hockey. I hope other Avs fans will give it a look. Heck, any hockey fans should drop by, even Red Wings fans!

So far, I've had a blast writing my few additions to the site, and I'm looking forward to the season. I hope to contribute regularly, and I'll do my best to bring more great quality to this little corner of the hockey world.

3 fanatics have replied:

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge said...

Very interesting story Mike!

Great job!

I can't wait to see you regular-season posts, and BTW, you made a great choice in picking the Avs, one of the few who have ben successful after relocating to another city! :)

Take care!


Anonymous said...

Yay! I enjoyed this story because it reminded me a little bit of my own. :)


Draft Dodger said...

nice read!

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