Thursday, May 3, 2012

On Hockey

I just went to a bar expecting trivia. It usually starts around 10, but 10:30 is more often the reasonable estimate. Tonight, it was expected to begin a little later, as soon as the Rangers game ended.

The game went into triple overtime.

Apparently, a normal hockey game, if a tie, will immediately go into a single, five minute OT, wherein the first team to score wins (and receives 2 points for the rankings, while the losing team receives one). Should neither team score, there is a shoot-out.

In the playoffs, overtime is twenty minutes, the same as a regular period, and there is a sixteen minute intermission between. There are also no shootouts. Only a goal can end the madness.

These guys effectively played two games tonight, with a little breather in between. Several of them were cut up and stitched back together in whatever haphazard way got them back onto the ice quickest. At one point, the camera panned over a blood splatter.

And there was no fighting; they couldn't waste the energy.

Once again, everything that's wrong with basketball is right with hockey, and vise versa. In hockey, it's just way too hard to score. I think part of it comes from having grown up watching The Mighty Ducks. Or just that this is a game so difficult you have to run on sharpened knife shoes and hit a rock with sticks to win. Either/or.

Then again, the Capitals definitely had far better control over the puck, ran actual plays, and it seemed almost blind luck at moments that they didn't win quickly and decisively. At one point, they actually Gordon Bombayed it: the puck bounced off the side rail. "A quarter of an inch!" Indeed.

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