I don't really understand the consternation coming out of les Montagnards over at A2Y over the now official January 1 game between the Hawks and Wings at Wrigley. Granted I live in Chicago and am going to the game, so I may be a bit biased. But. I don't really see why this is such a bad thing.
Chicago is a team on the rise. They have our number, or at least they did last season. They're the underdogs and there's a good chance they'll win. We're the defending champs. It's a good storyline. I keep reading about the conflict with bowl games on Jan 1. Uh, yes, that's what we all said last year. And then, uh, it turned out pretty well. Even ESPN, whom I despise to an unfathomable degree, covered the game pretty well despite the deluge of football. People are saying, well, now the game is in Big Ten country. Mmm, don't worry Wolverine fans, you're not going to be playing on January 1, or any similar date. If at all, your date will be in mid-December, likely at the whateverthefuck.com Bowl. I think we're safe.
And Chicago? No problems there. Northwestern? Haha. Perhaps my own proud institution, the University of Chicago, will being playing on New Year's? It's true, we helped found the Big 10 and the inaugural Heisman trophy was won by one of our boys, but we're not much of a threat these days in Div III. People in Chicago like hockey, actually. They just, for so long, toiled under an awful owner. Those days are gone. They will be out in force, as well as rooting hard in their homes.
Yes I would have liked Wings and Leafs at the Big House. And I'm guessing it will happen, some day down the road, when the league decides it wants to smash the NHL attendance record forever and ever. But if they're smart the NHL will wait until they're on the ropes to play that card. When Bettman's taken a serious beating and the salary cap goes down and Scott Van Pelt is ignoring hockey as hard as he possibly goddamn can, then they'll announce it.
In the meantime I'm happy with Wings at Wrigley. Yes there's no New Year's Eve game. Last New Years Eve I missed it because I was getting trashed and sick at the same time. In 1996 there was no New Years Eve game because there was a rock concert at the Joe. I would say this is a slightly better reason to skip it.
Plus I'm going. Bitches.