By Deanna Vasso
September 20th, 2012
I get asked this question a lot. It also comes with an incredulous look so it's more like YOU like hockey? When people say this to me that's how I know they either A) don't know me at all or B) don't listen to a word that comes out of my mouth. I've stated to ask why is it so unbelievable that I like sports? Apparently because I am a girl, which I think is hilarious because of the hockey blogs I've found on Sportsrantz.com most of them are run and written by females. I also spoke to one of my fellow bloggers on Broadstreetbuzz and he essentially said don't listen to people because you know what you're talking about and some of the best sports journalist are women.
My point in writing today is to explain why I love the sport of hockey so much. I had to really think about it and I found that essentially it correlates my life growing up. Since the NHL lockout is currently in effect and they have already cancelled all the pre-season games, I thought it was a good idea to talk about what has led me to my current obsession with the sport of hockey. Beware this post is going to be super long.
Eric Lindros & The 1997 Philadelphia Flyers
Well it started when I was 7 with Lindros & The Flyers. This was my first taste of the sport and my first taste of disappointment. I don't remember much of then I just remember that the Flyers were in the playoffs and everyone was excited about it. I also remember that they lost and to this day it is still the reason that I don't like the Detroit Red Wings. Yeah I'm still bitter about it.
The Mighty Ducks
Often when people ask me about why I like the sport I credit the Mighty Ducks movie trilogy. This is only partially true. My brother and I watched these movies a million times as kids. I know it's not really a "hockey movie" and it's kind of unrealistic in terms of the flying V formation but those movies put the spark of hockey into my life which never really left. I also think it's one of the few series where the second film is better.
NHL Lockout 2004-2005 & The Philadelphia Phantoms
As I grew up I still liked hockey, I didn't watch games all the time, but I was always interested. During the 2004-2005 season cancellation I got the chance to go to my first game, but due to the lockout that game was for the Philadelphia Phantoms. When I went to this game it became even clearer to me that this was my sport. Watching the players skate across the ice and the roar of the crowd was like nothing I ever experienced before. I just understood this game better than any other sport, and I had played a few. I also got to see this game in the old Spectrum Stadium before it was knocked down. Due to this it makes that experience more special to me, because it makes me feel like a part of history.
Freshman Year of College
So as I went through middle & high school my love of the sport increased but it still wasn't at the level that it is now. I was also working a 20 hour a week part time job on top of school full time while taking an AP Lit class and trying to get into college, so I really did not have that much time to focus on sports. So how did I become quite so obsessed with hockey? Sanderson Hall, Floor 7 of West Chester University. This was the floor I lived on in my freshmen year of college, it is now a parking lot. The people on my floor were very social and very big into sports. This was also the year that the Phillies won the world series, so sports became important to all of us. That's really when I started to actually try to watch Flyers game and it just progressed from then on. In my junior year when I had to write a blog for a class I ended up creating this blog (then it was hosted on blogger) and that's when I realized maybe I should try to be a sports journalist. I'm still not sure if that's ever going to happen, but we'll see.
So essentially that is my experience with hockey. Obviously I was bred to be a Flyers fan, as my family roots only for Philadelphia sports. Learning about the history of the Flyers also made me continue to like them and I will always be a fan of the team no matter where I live.
Thanks for reading!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: D.M. Vasso is a part-time web content producer for philly.com/sports, and in addition to writing on I Bleed Black and Orange, she also blogs about hockey for Ballhyped.com, and Broadstreetbuzz.com. Follow her on twitter @dmvasso.