LAS VEGAS — Four minutes to 2 a.m., down a few buttons on his pink button-down and high on a cocktail of athletic glory, Stella Artois, life itself and God-knows-what-other-liquids, Alex Ovechkin danced on the Hakkasan stage as confetti rained and lasers flashed, a few feet from both his friend Tiesto and the Stanley Cup, singing along to a pulsing, EDM version of The Outfield’s “Your Love.”
Well, what would you do in his shoes?
First, the Washington Capitals won the NHL championship Thursday night. And then, as their red-rocking fans were passing out in a fit of euphoria back East, they took full advantage of the location in which they claimed the franchise’s first Stanley Cup. They hit the club, prize in hand, and they partied.
Wow what a game! I almost watched the entire game but I had to go to the Post Office before I got home. LA Hockey is brighter than ever and I see the community growing here. I live in the Valley which like most of LA in general has a large Latino population and with that being said Soccer is HUUGE out here! Recently I’ve seen kids in the neighborhood playing street hockey in parking lots around the corner. Growing up myself in Pittsburgh it’s pretty normal to see that but in LA? It just doesn’t go together Hockey n Palm Trees is the visual thought but I think it’s awesome to see a sport get embraced by a whole new demographic or city in general. Winning breeds popularity! Even in Pittsburgh before the Penguins won in 1991 it was the 3rd popular team/sport but after winning 2 in a row and being a constant threat as long as Lemieux was healthy they became the 2nd favorite to the Steelers and pretty much are til this day.
Back to this win for the Kings though, I’ve never seen so many shots on goal and constant control of the puck pushing it into a double overtime! Kudo’s to the Rangers and mainly Lundquist, they really held on as long as possible but you could feel how bad the Kings wanted to win and win they did!
I really meant to post about the FINALS much earlier but I have so many other things happening and the series were flying by! So here we are I’m right here in L.A. (kinda, the Valley) and I’m here with them in another Finals games? It’s strange to me because I grew up in Pittsburgh during the 91-92 Championship Penguins and witnessed how the Hockey culture swept thru the city like never before! When I got there in late 86′ it was a city with championship hangovers from the 70’s Pirates and Steeler teams. The Penguins in the 90’s even had made into Rap lyrics (look it up yourself). In 1994 I spent my graduation in NYC & it started with me going to the Rangers Stanley Cup parade after 54 years of zilch! I remember how exciting it felt, there was ticker tape & people everywhere. I got caught up enjoying it too. Now I’ve been in Los Angeles since fall of 98′ and not long after I arrived it became a great Laker town again after a dead period. Since then it mostly has been a Laker town. People love the Dodgers too and now the Clippers have become legit (minus the Sterling mayhem) but hockey in L.A. was ONLY legit before because of a man named WAYNE GRETZKY (the website name) other than that it mostly was a novelty to most around here. This current squad is very special as a whole unit and if they happen to get the sweep just watch how large their fan base will grow beyond L.A.