Hockey. My unlikely love.

Hockey. Many love it, many don’t understand it. It is, in my opinion, the most athletically demanding. The finesse and concentration of baseball, the speed of basketball, the power of football, and possibly the most exciting sport on the planet. It isn’t given much of a chance though. People don’t let it stand against football. But hockey is growing in the US. Look at the all stars in Carolina for the all star game this year. The majority of them being from North America. Names such as, Ryan Kesler, Patrick Kane, Ryan Miller (recently named #1 goaltender in the world), Ryan Suter (son of miracle on ice participant Bob Suter), Phil Kessel, and the always great, Brian Rafalski. USA hockey is growing. Whether you like it or not. They proved it in the 2010 olympics in Vancouver.

Now you’re probably wondering, what does this have to do with anything? My point to this blog is, that I want to show the growth of hockey, and my love for the game.

Right now, I’m watching a movie I got from Netflix called, Minnesota Wild : The State of Hockey. I’ve never really had any interest in the Wild franchise. But it’s hockey. so it’s amazing to me anyways. I like to think of myself as a hockey connoisseur, much like my brother is with comics. Just with a lot less memorabilia.

Thanks to my father, and eldest brother, Justin, I love sports. It’s my life. But my love of this sport on ice has stemmed on its own. My dad will say, “hockey is only good live”. Hmmmm. I don’t like to believe that. I believe hockey is good any day of the week at any time of the day. I don’t care who’s playing, or if it’s just NHL Power Play on NHL Network. I’ll watch and expand my knowledge. I adore this game. What’s sad enough, though, I’ll never get to play this game as an organized sport. I’ll only be able to play on my own.

My first live exposure to the National Hockey League was a few years ago. My family, sans Jessica, went to visit Justin while he was still living in Norcross, GA. As a spur of the moment thing, me, Jared, Justin, and my dad went to an Atlanta Thrashers game against the New Jersey Devils. My first live game. I would get to see the likes of Ilya Kovalchuck, Bobby Holik, Marian Hossa, Slava Kozlov, and quite possibly the greatest goalie ever. Martin Brodeur. It was fantastic. That’s when it started. Ever since then, I’ve been hockey crazy. Being from Atlanta, you’d figure I’m a Thrashers fan, but I’d have to say you’re wrong. I am a fan of the 2010 President’s trophy winning Washington Capitals. And my favorite player? You guessed it. Alex Ovechkin.

One of my favorite movies is Miracle. I watch it all of the time. I even own a 1980 USA hockey sweater. To me, that is the most inspiring story. An underdog full of college individuals come together to defeat a machine that is the USSR hockey club.

My interest in hockey has grown to ridiculous amounts. I’ll just watch it at any time of the day. I sleep to it. I tell you all of this, to tell you one thing. If you don’t watch hockey, you might as well start. If it can grow on a southern boy born in Georgia and raised in Texas, it can grow on anybody.

So long, and keep that glove up,
Jacob Rich.

Posted in alexander ovechkin, atlanta thrashers, hockey, minnesota wild, miracle on ice, washington capitals | Leave a comment