Guest Post from Daisy: Let’s Learn About Awesome

10/09/2010 By Shawn Burns

Daisy, author of DaisyJD, is a Twitter friend who is also a Red Wings fan and that’s pretty much all I should have to tell you about her. Let’s Go Red Wings.

I’m DaisyJD, and on the surface Backpacking Dad & I might not have that much in common. The last backpack I carried was in law school and it was full of heavy, overpriced books filled with mostly useless information. (Law degree, FTW!) He has a wife and two adorable children and I have a husband and a neurotic beagle mix who thinks a stuffed Eggland’s Best egg is his best friend. Shawn lives in California, my husband and I live in Chicago. The list goes on…. but before you start wondering just where in the heck I’m going with this I’ll throw it out there that Backpacking Dad and I both have a slightly unnatural love for the Detroit Red Wings. I’m not really your stereotypical hockey fan. Growing up my parents took my brother and I to the occasional college football game, a few polo matches and once we went to the University Boat Race in London, a rowing event held on the Thames River. Needless to say, the National Hockey League wasn’t sending me emails regarding upcoming ticket sales. Then, as many women do, I met a man who swept me off my feet and I got to learn in excruciating detail all sorts of things about his favorite sports teams. Namely the Michigan Wolverines, the Detroit Lions and the Detroit Red Wings. As a solid University of Southern California and New Orleans Saints fan, I couldn’t be swayed by his atrocious taste in football, however…well…the Red Wings sucked me in. For those of you new to hockey (or just reading about it, say, right now) let me run over the finer points:

1. It is fast and therefore fun to watch unlike, say, baseballzzzzzzzzzzz sorry I fell asleep;

2. Fights, which while rudimentary at best, are very fun to watch; and

3. Beer, lots of beer, and often times delicious ice cold Canadian beer.

Now that you are sold on the game of hockey lets dig a little deeper. The National Hockey League began in the United States in 1942 with six teams, now referred to as the Original Six. If you meet someone who cheers for a hockey team outside of this list of six, please feel free to snub them. The Original Six were the Boston Bruins, the Chicago Blackhawks, the Detroit Red Wings, the Montreal Canadiens, the New York Rangers and the Toronto Maple Leafs. It wasn’t until 1967 that the NHL expanded, allowing six more teams in (including some teams that were operating before then, but sadly for them, they are not part of the Original Six) and slowly the league grew into what it is today. Although, if you ask me, Raleigh, North Carolina and Tampa, Florida should not have a team. (Alas, no one asked me. ) Anyway. The Red Wings. According to Wikipedia (the knower of all things true):

Between the 1933-34 and 1965-66 seasons, the Red Wings missed the playoffs only four times. More recently, the Red Wings have made the playoffs in 25 of the last 27 seasons, including the last 19 in a row. This is the longest current streak of post-season appearances in all of North American professional sports.

Take that Yankees fans.

The Red Wings roster has included many greats including my husband’s personal favorite Steve Yzerman (the only hockey sweater he will wear bears Yzerman’s name and number), Gordie Howe and my personal delight Chris Osgood. The Red Wings are known for many fun traditions, namely winning, but also the legend of the octopus that is thrown onto the ice by energetic fans during play off games. Ollie’s 8 legs signify the 8 game sweep that was necessary during a post season tournament of two “best of seven” rounds in the 1950’s for the grand trophy of them all, the Stanley Cup. Like the Lombardi Trophy in football, it is the award given for the top NHL team of the year, and the Red Wings have brought it home to the fine citizens of Detroit a grand total of eleven times.

At this point, with a few mind staggering statistics and the mention of people throwing dead octopi (octopuses or octopodes, natch) onto large sheets of ice, I remain firmly convinced at this point that I have lured you into the ways of the Red Wings, and at the very least the game of hockey, but if for some reason I have not, let me take you back to point three:


And there we have it. Lets go Wings!

— Daisy, Just Daisy