Sports Reports: Ice hockey gets hot

Sports Editor Eric Johnson discusses topics on in-season sports and issues in sports all across America. Reading this column will not only make you chuckle, but it will also change your life in the most positive way known to man.


Eric Johnson, Sports Editor

Ice hockey is one of the most entertaining sports in the world, but it’s also incredibly overlooked unless you’re Swedish, Russian, or come from the realm of ice known as Canada.

Sure, there’s something special about college football in the SEC, but nothing compares to the anticipation built up while watching the Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby carve up the ice like a Christmas ham before he scores, placing the puck perfectly under the top crossbar.

As if I have to remind people of the Winter Olympics last year when the U.S. played Russia in group contention. St. Louis Blues right wing, T.J. Oshie, became an American hero after showing the world why head Coach Dan Bylsma picked him as a shootout specialist.

Oshie was the only American to score in shootouts and scored 4 goals in 6 attempts against Columbus Blue Jackets’ and Russia’s goalie, Sergei Bobrovsky.

The most remarkable aspect of America’s success against Russia is that America was portrayed as more of an underdog this year than they were in 1980, when America won the gold medal and stopped the then Soviet Union from repeating winning the gold medal for 20 years.

Even though the pride of our great country isn’t on the line in every NHL game, there’s still plenty of excitement in hockey games along with the brutal fistfights every once in a while.

I’m not talking about just a bloody nose, I expect to see some teeth on the ice. You’re going into the penalty box regardless of the outcome, you might as well make a name for yourself.

Pick a team for their mascot, pick a team for their logo, pick a team with as many last names that end in “-sky” as you want, I challenge you to pick one NHL team and follow their season for two weeks.

Hockey combines the precision of a surgeon with the brute strength and aggressiveness of meathead wrestlers, so you’ll probably see some awesome highlights and hopefully a kiddie pool of spilt blood.

Don’t do it to prove anything besides the fact that you were thinking, “Man, I never really cared about hockey, but now I see it’s gnarly. Maybe that Johnson kid is a prophet.”

And hey, if you’re not patient enough to watch a whole hockey game, at least watch some online highlights when you’re bored in class, instead of playing “Octagon.”

Then tell me hockey is more boring than soccer.

If I want to watch people struggle to score for 90 minutes, I’ll go to Homecoming and watch the freshmen as they huddle in a corner, still terrified of the childhood terror: cooties.

Eric Johnson is a Sports Editor for The Patriot and