Not Just Hockey

Day Chris hates Night Chris.

Day Chris likes to read the newspaper in the morning, enjoy a morning walk and get a few errands complete before he drives into work. Night Chris currently prevents Day Chris from doing any of these tasks. Night Chris loves Stanley Cup Playoff hockey and, well, sleep is overrated for the next two months or so.

Do yourself a huge favor. Find a game in a Canadian arena and tune in early. Listen to the 19,000 or so fans proudly sing their national anthem in such a way that words cannot do justice. It should bring a smile to your face. This does not mean that I do not love America. This does mean that I appreciate any folks who take that much pride in their country. It should elicit goosebumps.

Every team has a game under its belt so far in the postseason. The number one seed in the Eastern Conference, my hometown Washington Capitals, needed an overtime period to give themselves a 1-0 series lead. Everyone named Alexander on the Capitals registered a goal for the 2-1 overtime win. It’s too early to get a beat on the series after just one game, but it’s starting to wash out the bad taste left in Caps fans mouths after the implosion against the Canadiens last season.

As visitors, three lower seeds took their opener. With the absence of Chris Pronger for the Philadelphia Flyers, don’t overlook the Buffalo Sabres in the quarterfinal round. If Ryan Miller can repeat his Mr. Perfect act three more times in this series, the Flyers are toast. Then again, one game does not make a series. Don’t give up on the L.A. Kings either. Los Angeles outplayed San Jose late on Thursday night, only to fall after an overtime slap shot.

And that brings us to a Friday morning where Day Chris didn’t take a walk, run any errands or read the paper. He needs a slap shot of caffeine. He’ll be like this for the next two months. After all, it’s not just hockey. It’s playoff hockey.

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