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05-05-2012, 02:46 PM
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Moments like this ....... (thread for only diehard Pred fans)

Címon Pred fans, enough of the doomsday talk. Weíre better than this. 30 fan bases started the year with grand hopes and legit reasons for making the playoffs. 16 did, 14 didnít. For the 7th time in 8 years (and the one year we didnít, we missed it on the last day of the season), we made it. That kind of track record made every single regular season game meaningful. It gave us purpose and provided us entertainment and passion. As we did last year, we won the first round against our big brother, the team weíve been emulating since Year One. Pred Nation has grown by leaps and bounds. 25 regular season sellouts, 16.7K average attendance, tv ratings doubled, and a winning over of the casual sports fan in Nashville. A Pred game is once again a cool place to be.

We run into a team whoís modeled themselves after us. Because we have not played our best, and we suffered the loss of AK46 and Rads to stupidity, we are down 3-1. If we score the OT goal in Game 1 and that goal last night wasnít blown dead, we could be up 3-1.

So here we are, down 3-1. Same place as last year, but not the same circumstances. Last year, the Canucks were better than us. We needed them to falter and us to play our best. Given that tall order, we won our first elimination playoff game ever, giving us a Game 6. We can and will to the same Monday night. Rads and AK46 will play their ***** off. Weíll dig deep and win, setting up a Game 6.

This Game 6 will be different. We are as good as they are. When we both play our game, itíll be a one goal game. We will hit another Pred first: winning a Game 6 and forcing our very first Game 7.

Think of how fun this will all be. This is why we do what we do. Spend money, endless hours reading blogs, tweets, posts, and gauge our mood on the outcome of Pred games. To borrow from one of this yearís slogans, weíre ďall inĒ. The trade-off of being ďall inĒ is the heart pumping anticipation of winning or losses when you really care about it. Win and itís like a drug. Lose and you need a drug.

We may lay an egg Monday night and fold the tent. If we do, Iíll be really disappointed, depressed for several days, swear off the rest of the playoffs, second guess why I spend so much time and money on this team, and transition to something else to fill the void that appears unfillable. I plan to watch at Brew house South. I watched all the great away games last year there and feel it has max karma for a win. Iíve watched the two away games in this series at a friendís house, and then mine. Win or lose, I want the company of as many people who care as much as I do as I can get.

Iím a vet sports fan. Growing up in the shadow of NYC in the 60ís, I am a diehard Mets and Jets fan. As an 11 year old, experiencing Namathís improbable Super Bowl win as a 17 Ĺ point underdog in January, followed by Tom Terrific and the Miracle Mets in October, I fell in love with sports. Then I experienced the lean years, most of the 70ís thru the mid 80ís. Disappointment after disappointment. Even when the Mets got good again, and we made the World Series in 86, we got down 3 games to 2, and were down 2 runs in the last inning with two outs and nobody on. 3 minutes later, Vin Sully was screaming, ďÖand it gets by Buckner and the Mets win!!!!Ē. I will never forget that feeling. Ever. All that said, Iíve just pretty much chronicled for you the highlights of 50 years of being a Mets/Jets fan. Doesnít seem worth it, does it. Well, it is worth it. The opportunity to feel that feeling of having your team prevail against all odds is like no other. Itís worth all the disappointments. In fact, the disappointments are necessary to make big wins special.
This playoff season may end just like the other 6 for the Preds. If it does, we sulk, work thru our emotions, and then reflect on how much better we have it than the vast majority of the other franchises. Imagine being a Blue Jacket fan. Even imagine being a Coyote fan. They may lose their team forever.

But maybe, just maybe, this is our ďÖand it gets by Buckner and the Mets win!!!!Ē year. The year your 11 year old will become a Preds fan for life because they did the improbable. Coming back from a 3-1 deficit is so cool because each win builds on itself. The other team starts squeezing their sticks tighter. It engulfs the city in a way that winning 4 games to 1 doesnít. Itís a memory that converts people from casual fans to diehards.

What makes it special is you donít really see it coming. You hope, but deep down youíre already preparing and protecting yourself emotionally for the ultimate defeat, but it never comes.

So, as a fan base, letís stop preparing for the ultimate doom and believe. Donít ruin the moment by cashing in your chips while the game is still going on and you still have chips. Just push them all in to the middle of the table, and tune in at 9:00 Monday, and pray for Shane Doan to turn into Bill Buckner.

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