Friday, May 16, 2014

Oh, Canada! (Nugs vs. Allison Stanley Cup Playoffs 2014: Swedish Chef Edition)

Every year (as in, the last two), Allison and I predict which teams in the NHL postseason will make it through each round, eventually winning the coveted Stanley Cup. Unfortunately in 2014, the Quarterfinal fell during a really busy week for me (Passover/Easter/family birthdays) so Allison and I grudgingly decided not to do our annual contest where we try to make you guys take sides over who you think should win (clearly me). Also, in case you didn't notice, That Ain't Kosher has kind of fallen by the wayside while I make room for life’s other important things like switching jobs, moving and going to the gym eating candy. I know, try not to cry too hard while you imagine a world without me.

Our plan changed when both my New York Rangers (a.k.a. GREATEST TEAM EVER) and the Montreal Canadiens (Allison’s second place finishers) made it to the Eastern Conference Finals and we realized that we can’t be friends anymore, or at least until June. This gave me the brilliant idea that we should both compose editorials on why each one of our teams is the best, and then Allison switched it around and titled hers “Why My Team Will Win.” How selfish of you, Allison. That’s not very Canada-y at all. So here is my post on why everyone should root for the Blueshirts. You will all clearly discover why I am winner and still champion.

BTW, her adorable reasons can be found here. HAHAHA! She's so cute.

EXHIBIT OH HAAAAAI: Handsome Hank, or as I like to refer to him, Swedish Chef, is one of the more elite goaltenders in the NHL. He’s a constant Vezina winner or finalist, even though this year it will probably go to that douchebag Tuuka Rask. This entire postseason he’s been playing like a beast, making ridiculous saves and contorting his body in ways that make me feel kind of funny, like when we used to climb the ropes in gym class.


Plus, here he is on a boat.

Also, here he is in a suit:

Hey girl, you know what's awesome? ME.
Sometimes he kind of looks like Aladdin, which confuses me but Aladdin was also my first major childhood crush (don’t judge), so, major bonus points.

Also, here he is staring at you. You're welcome.

Also, he loves babies.


Also, here he is in a suit again.

Update: I guess Carey Price is also OK looking, but in that “I look like I’m 12 and also, Canada” way. 

So yeah, but no. I do admit that Price is an exceptional goaltender- it requires a certain amount of stamina and skill to knock the Cup-favorite Bruins and their high-school bullying out of contention- but in no way does he come close to Henrik Lundqvist. Period. The End.

Also, here’s Hank in a suit.

Yeah, probably shouldn't have looked at a picture of him on a bed.
I think you can see where I’m headed with this.

EXHIBIT B CUP: (see what I did there? CUP? So clever.) So Allison, in case you didn’t realize, not ALL your games are played in Montreal. We have a home ice advantage, as well, and Rangers fans “bleed blue” for a reason. The New York sports community is one of the most loyal there is in the US, especially when one of our teams makes the postseason. The Rangers beat the Pens, who we hate, and the Flyers, who even their players’ moms hate, to get here. Not to mention that there’s the excitement of an Original Six matchup, with two teams that each haven’t won in 20 years. I’m betting on an astronomical attendance at the Garden, and even a huge fanbase at the Bell Centre, which will only boost the Blueshirts' morale. Watching it on a big screen means nothing if your team doesn’t know that you’re there. "Ole," my ass. GO-O-OAL!

FYI- I’m in no way suggesting that New York City hockey fans are bigger than Canadian ones. You guys are insane. Like, scary insane. Like, hockey is pretty much all you guys have. Besides Molson. And flannel shirts.


Oh, yes. Put your puck in my net.
Our forwards can pretty much do no wrong right now. After the tragic loss of Marty St. Louis’ mother, he chose to come back and perform with his team; then scored the first goal of the game- on Mother’s Day. Even Penguins fans probably cheered him on. Brad Richards, Derek Stepan and Daniel Carcillo are killing everything. If Chris Kreider manages to stay out of the penalty box, we can expect a lot from him as well. Any one of our main forwards could fill the vacant Captain slot next year and I would be fine with that. (HAHAHAHA. “Fill the vacant slot.”)

I'm an eight year old.
EXHIBIT DD: At first I wasn’t sure about Alain Vigneault as our head coach, to be honest. When we swapped with Vancouver, the Canucks were perennial chokers, never making it that far in the Playoffs. But he’s proven to be a great addition to the Club, with a style that’s clearly suited the Rangers and helped them advance to the Final Four. Vigneault has also previously coached Montreal, so even though it’s a different roster, he knows how to get past the most decorated team in the NHL.

Meanwhile, John Tortorella is now an even bigger asshole, and the Canucks sucked even harder. Tort got fired at the end of this regulation season when they failed to make the playoffs.

EXHIBIT SQUEE: I'm not going to make your decisions for you, but this happy puppy probably already did.

Also, here’s Hank in a suit:

You can catch Game 1 tomorrow, May 17th at 1 pm on NBC. You could root for Montreal, but then you would have to explain why you like something from the same country that birthed us Justin Bieber.