Wow, nearly three of your fans got to watch you beat the Chicago Blackhawks this year—your first ever playoff series win since moving from Winni-friggin-peg. Wanna know why? The following is the comedy, the tragedy, and the horror that befell one Coyote fan, namely me, during the 2012 playoffs. Damn Mayans. The Hockey Gods frown on you Arizona! They will now probably relocate to Seattle or Hackensack...and who needs a team out in Hackensack? This post has been sent to NHL Commissioner, Gary Bettman and to Captain Coyote, Shane Doan. They will respect my authoritay!
I love Arizona, if it weren’t for all these damn Arizonians. Yes, I am an East coaster and at times like this my condition flares up like a geographic hemorrhoid. For game two I drove down from Flagstaff to Phoenix for this epic event. It was snowing on the Saturday in question. We already had about a foot on the ground. Oh, and I have applied to become a meteorologist in the Flagstaff area as the job obviously comes complete with a medical marijuana card and a lifetime supply of the goods (aka, the weathermen here must be stoned out of their gourds 24/7). I think Punxsutawney Phil could prognosticate better after a lost weekend with Keith Richards on a bucket of shrooms.
Anyway, despite assurances that things would wind down by 11AM, at 1PM it was still snowing heavily. I said screw it and braved Route-17 anyway. I’m a hockey fan, after all, so I can skate. By Munds Park the snow had stopped, but at Camp Verde the passenger side windshield wiper decided to swing all the way over and break the only wiper I actually needed...the one in front of my face. Sears had just replaced the mechanism for the one that just went rogue and had rabidly attacked its driver side counterpart. It was a vicious maneuver not seen since the 2nd game of the Flyer/Penguin series. Of course, Bettman would probably approve a 25 trip suspension for the infraction, wouldn’t ya? Free Raffi!!! Meanwhile, Sears later only replaced one of the wipers. Not having been there themselves, maybe they figured the other wiper had it coming. I am also applying for all the mechanic jobs in my area for that lifetime prescription thing as well.
So, as I climb over the Prescott Mountains, it started raining and sleeting again. I stopped at the Sunset Point rest area to survey the area. My situation was dire. It looked like there was a wall of water on either side of the highway, but there was a narrow opening due south. So I shot the gap and made it safely to New River Road. I cut over to Surprise, jumped in my sister’s truck and made it to the game, unscathed. I enjoyed a beer at McFadden’s, talked hockey with two Canadians--who knew a lot about old time hockey, eh—and two hours later I wanted to shoot my face off, because the Coyotes allowed the tying goal with 5.5 seconds left in the game and then promptly lost in overtime.
Forward to game six...where things get stupid. Admittedly, it’s not entirely the Coyotes’ fault, but I’m a blamer and it’s certainly mostly their fault. Game six is why I wrote this article, so Mr. Bettman and Mr. Doan, pay particular attention to this part.
1PM game day:
I’m stuck at work and can’t check the game’s start time. My work blocks all sports stuff on the internet. Oh, they also block The Daily Discord. The filter, dutifully installed by my fascist IT department, labeled the site either porn or mature content... which is bullshit, because it’s clearly both.
So I must rely on my wife to let me know when the game starts. She said 4PM. It’s Chicago time so this isn’t too unusual. So I dutifully leave work early and head to Maloney’s Pub for the game. Kidding! I always leave work early and head to Maloney’s Pub. Upon arriving, I parked it at a booth and ordered a Guinness. The woman poured the thing straight, not the traditional three quarter pour, and then she promptly forgot to bring it over to me. Well, that’ neither here nor there...actually it’s right over there and I can’t drink it. Then I soon realized the Ottawa/Ranger game is on. I Google NHL.com and find out the Coyote game starts in three hours. Good, maybe she’ll bring me my flipping beer by then! In her defense, there are at least two other patrons in the establishment.
I finished my beer and decided to watch the game at home. My wife swore it said Coyotes/Blackhawks at 4PM but now it appears the game is on CNBC at 6PM, at least according to the guide. So 6PM rolled around and I’m still enjoying American Greed: Scams, Schemes, and Broken Dreams (this would later prove apropos). Who needs hockey playoffs when you have the Bernie Madoff story, right? I’m not complaining; I enjoy a good white collar crime as much as the next guy.
I’m still not worried because I know the game really starts at seven. It’s Arizona, I’m used to this by now. Then, at 6:45PM, CNBC announces on the marquee that the game is blacked out in my area. Shit. Well, the game is on FSA+ at 9PM. All I have to do is text my sister, who has the hockey package, and tell her not to call me if they win. I will also need to avoid certain channels for a while, most of the internet, and I probably shouldn’t leave the house or answer the phone or even talk to anyone. No problem.
Oh wait, Facebook will tell me the scores period for period, which makes me crazy as I DVR some of the games, so I steered clear of that as well. Yahoo Mail would be a bad move too with all the typical razzing.
Shit. I’m the Administrator on Call for my agency this week. I have to answer the phone. Hmmm. This is playoff hockey...what’s the worst that could happen at a psych unit? I shut the bitch off. So all I need to do now is hide for two hours amidst some kind of information-less bubble, a place totally devoid of reality. So, I did what anyone in a similar situation would, I turned on Fox News.
This is like an old joke the Crank told me once...but that’s not what really pissed me off.
At 6:55PM, I switch over to FSA+ and it says Coyote Pre Game Show on the guide. Cool.
COYOTE PRE-GAME SHOW...
Ummm, it was the post game show and they were congratulating goalie Mike Smith on his shutout.
DAMN YOU ARIZONA!!! DAMN YOU COYOTES!!!! DIE, DIE, DIE!!!!!
Sorry, I just had to vent. DIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am willing to forgive the NHL, the city of Phoenix, Sudden Link Cable, and Captain Shane Doan if they send me two regular season tickets for next year, provided the team isn’t relocated to Seattle (in which case include some flights from Sky Harbor to Sea-Tac). The seats don’t have to be on the ice or anything fancy, but not nosebleed either. Oh, and I’m only attending if you resign the contract with the Guinness kiosk, which closed recently. I moved my family west, as Horace Greely demanded, for roughly ten reasons. Number three was Jobing.com and the Phoenix Coyotes! and number seven was the coveted Guinness kiosk at Jobing.com. If over four million people in the Valley of the Sun would rather pay $8 a pint for a Budweiser product over $8 for a Guinness—yes, they were the same price (a salary tap?)—then you don’t deserve a professional hockey team! I was just as sad when the Dublin Draughts relocated to Scotland.
P.S. I won’t say no to a party box, in which case I’ll even cover the game for The Daily Discord. You might want to check out some of our posts before you agree to that part. Now don’t get me started on Doan’s first hat trick. Earlier in the season, I missed Doan’s second goal searching for the illusive Guinness kiosk, which closed. Bastards! And when Doan sealed the deal with his third, everyone in my section had just decided to stand up and go back to McFadden’s, presumably due to the lack of Guinness. So as the buzzer sounded and the puck entered the net (Doan scored with zero seconds on the clock), I was tying my shoe. You can’t make this shit up...well, I could but I didn’t.