A Thrasher fan simultaneously expresses his thoughts on Dany Heatley and Marian Hossa.
My dear Marian (Hossa, of course!) has once again made it to the Stanley Cup Finals. That’s three years in a row, with three different teams — and that’s a pretty incredible feat. As someone who was lucky enough to get to watch Marian for many years in Atlanta, I know how good he can be. It’s time for him to step it up in the playoffs and get over the yips or whatever it is that has him underperforming. He’s better than his playoff stats show. He’s magical when he’s on. It’s time for him to bring out the magic stick and show everyone what I think we all know he’s capable of. I can’t help but think that, although the Blackhawks got this far in the playoffs without — for the most part — his otherworldly skills, Marian has to be more than a mere mortal before the hockey gods (and goddesses!) will allow him to lift the Cup. He just seems to have a curse on him.
I find it rather intriguing that Hossa, who was signed by, and traded from, the Ottawa Senators (to the Atlanta Thrashers) before the ink was even dry on the contract, was going up against the guy — Dany Heatley now of the San Jose Sharks — he was traded for way back when. For all of the gaffes Marian has made in the media over the last several years and for all the things he’s said that have pissed people off, I think he’s been nothing if not honest and hard working. I will sound like a bitter Thrashers fan but I think the exact opposite of “the Heater.”
Is this Hossa's year -- at last?
I’ve always understood Heatley’s desire to depart from Atlanta and try to cobble his mind back together without the daily, sorrowful reminders the city held for him. But he’s shown himself to be kind of a louse. Quitting, not just on the city of Atlanta and the fans who stood so firmly behind him, but on the Swiss team he signed with during the NHL lockout (to head to Russia to play for Ak Bars Kazan, a team loaded with NHL talent), then on the Senators last year, demanding a trade after signing a big old contract, which, of course, contained the dreaded no-trade clause. I’m not going to go so far as to compare him — either jokingly or seriously — to Stalin as one somewhat amusing columnist
did back during last summer’s “Dany-gate.” But maybe the hockey gods have spoken after all. Hossa’s in, Heater’s out.
Or maybe I am just being ridiculous. Maybe it’s just the way Lady Luck danced … the cookie crumbled … the puck bounced. Whatever it is, I have always admired Marian Hossa as a person and a player. As a Thrasher fan, it sucks he’s gone and it hurts to know he didn’t want to be in my city on my team, but he didn’t choose Atlanta and I respect his decision to seek his fame and fortune elsewhere. In short, I wish him well and hope that, the third time is, indeed, a charm. There is a Russian proverb that asserts “God loves the number three.” Maybe this is Hossa’s year after all.
Photos: Thrasher fan by Goddess Kaatiya. Copyright 2007-2010. All Rights Reserved. Marian Hossa by Chris Stanford, chrisstanford.com.