I guess the bottomline is that tonight will either be a relief or the worst thing to happen in Sharks history. Just when I think that this hockey team couldn’t make themselves any more embarrassing than they already are, they miraculously out do themselves again. It doesn’t help that this is happening against our biggest rivals either. It doesn’t help that I happen to live in Southern California. If this collapse happens, wearing a Sharks logo in Southern California will be the equivalent of Hester Prynne wearing the ‘A’. Like Hester Prynne though, no matter the circumstances of tonight’s game, I will continue to wear my ‘A’ proudly, while simultaneously living an uneventful life. Some will say it’s because that’s what diehard fans do, some will say it’s because I’m stubborn, and others will say it’s because I look good in teal. It’s pretty much all of those things. The truth is that although this team puts me through hell year in and year out, I still love them and refuse to ignore how fun it is to follow them, even though the result is never what one would desire. With that being said, this still sucks. A lot.
I realize that many of you are having a hard time dealing with this collapse, and I also having a less than easy time dealing with it as well. Before heading into tonight’s game, lets spend a little bit of time going over the Kübler-Ross model, or the five stages of grief, for you non-psychology people.
1. Denial – This is when one is trying to shut out the magnitude of their situation and develop a false, preferable reality. Examples of this would be “we haven’t lost a game 7 on home ice since 2007!” “There’s no way we can lose this one!” *watches Jamie Baker game 7 goal over & over again until eyes bleed*
2. Anger – This is the realization that one’s false reality is bullshit. This is when one gets really angry and take it out on friends and loved ones (or random strangers via twitter). An example of this would be, “fuck this team, fuck the kings, fuck you.” A truly angry person would then proceed to call their team plural six-letter C word that will say not discuss because it is rude and worse than the 4-letter C word.
3. Bargaining – This is the hope that one can somehow undo or avoid a cause of grief. An example of this would be “I promise to go to ALL the round two games if you win tonight, and I’ll even wait for Corey Perry after the games in Honda Center to spear him in the nuts.” (Side note: win or lose, I might do the second part of that example)
4. Depression – This is when one begins to understand the certainty of death (or in this case, a hockey season perhaps coming to an end). One becomes detached from those they care about and find very little meaning in life. An example of this is “why bother watching? They’re just going to disappoint me no matter what. I don’t even know why I follow this godforsaken shithole of a team”
5. Acceptance – This is when individuals begin to come to terms with their inevitable future. An example of this would be “it’s going to be okay. Win or lose, it was an exciting season. I hope one of these teams kick the shit out of Anaheim in the next round”
I hope this little psychology lesson helps you get through tonight’s game. If that doesn’t work, booze tends to help.