I was counting on you, my dearest Lakers. For the past few months, I have been unemployed. I have been awaiting bar results while working unpaid to fluff my resume. And as you well know, working unpaid in Los Angeles means your life sucks. Really, really sucks. And now, thanks to the asinine lockout, there is no hope. Nothing to distract me from the doldrums and soup kitchens of life... unless... maybe... hockey?
For all of those mourning the loss of the season, I'd suggest a mass exodus. We'll come back. We're not fans of some irrelevant team, like the Milwaukee Bucks. We are fans of THE TEAM. But until the league gets its hands out of the players' pockets (guess where I fall on the whose fault is it spectrum) we depressed NBA fans need refuge in the arms of another. Think of it as gettin' some while on a "break".
I'll be first to admit. I know nothing about hockey, other than playing Law School hockey for the past couple years. We played in tennis shoes with a stick and an orange ball. It's really a different sport. However, with the Association on break, I should have plenty of time to learn about the sport and the teams. And since my dear, dear, Chiefs are absolutely terrible and playing in a terrible division, their misery only keeps me occupied on Sundays. Plenty of time, indeed.
So who do you all suggest? I polled my facebook friends, which is a true scientific sample. I'll post their suggestions and why or why not they are a possibility. Perhaps I'll get inspired and go through the whole league... nahhhh.
No Canadian teams. Canada's cool and all, but I'm an American damnit. And if Kansas City doesn't have a hockey team, I'm at least going to root for one in my home country.
Must be good. Really though, if we're going to bandwagon, let's do it right. Why join a perinnial loser and suffer through the fate that many Kansas City Royals fans or Sacramento Kings fans have been dealing with for a while?
Their uniforms can't suck. I can't stand to stare at the Redskins' unis or the Blackhawks either. It's not a Native American thing. I'm a Chiefs fan. It's just, I want the logo and colors to speak to me. I want to feel happy and warm when I see the team, like I do when I see that Purple and Gold.
Anaheim Ducks: I hear they are good. And I'm digging the new colors. I hated the old Disney connection and they are beginning to distance themselves from that. Other than Disney, I'd really have no problem with following them.
Los Angeles Kings: I know, they are Los Angeles. But can any of us really bring ourselves to suddenly start chanting GO KINGS! during basketball season? I can't. The Kings (NBA) left Kansas City a month after I was born. They shall never be forgiven. And I cannot, and will not, root for a team that shares logos and similar colors.
San Jose Sharks: I really don't have much of a reason to hate them. A lot of my friends from UC Davis love the Sharks. And the teal ain't bad. It ain't good either. Something about San Jose having a hockey team has always bugged me.
Philadelphia Flyers: OK, no one has suggested this yet, but I do have some friends that are Flyers fans and the Orange & Black combo is truly underutilized in pro sports. To top it off, they are a good team. I have no connection whatsoever to Philadelphia though. I haven't even been there to visit.
The Washington Capitals: One of my dear friends immediately replied with, "Washington Caps will be perfect. Bunch of bandwagon fans who don't know anything about hockey.." Another stated, "I'd have to recommend the Capitals as well. The red jersey should bring out your blue eyes. They're also a great bandwagon team since they do well but haven't won the Stanley Cup. That way you can bitch about their failings like the other fans." I think they've made a good case. And I went to law school near D.C. (well, three and a half hours away, but D.C. was probably the closest team.) They also satisfy the jingoism/pro-America criteria to an extent that cannot be matched.
Dallas Stars: Supposedly a great, fast-paced playing style and are ignored completely by their fanbase. Also a good team, allegedly.
Other, lesser contenders:
St. Louis Blues: I want to like them. They are Missouri's hockey team, and I was born in Missouri. But they suck. They always have, I think. And Blue and Gold is only OK. Not feeling them though.
New York Islanders/New York Rangers: I love New York. And I don't yet have a New York team. But, both of them have tired and uninspiring logos and the Islanders suck. Bad.
Pittsburgh Penguins: They got two votes. The penguin is cute. I used to play Tux Racer (google it). Still, I don't get the warm fuzzy feeling yet.
Any other suggestions? We need a consensus. Maybe we can find a team like the Bucks that no one cares about but has a few good players and is a fringe contender. Then we can all join their fan base en masse, especially their SB Nation Blog.