I can't believe I am coming to the defense of a Chicago team but I am. Here is the original post from Facebook yesterday, followed by some commentary.
I'm a Pittsburgh Penguin fan stuck in the middle of Blackhawk country. I wasn't always outnumbered. Only in the last 8-10 years did it get this way after the majority dormant fan base woke up from hibernation realizing a) Chicago has a pro hockey team and b) they're pretty good. A couple Cups later and now, everyone's a Hawks fan. But if you aren't, that's ok. You can basically go [expletive deleted] yourself which is a common phrase I have heard for at least the past 3 years if not longer.
But i don't care. I'm also a hockey fan, period. I like good hockey. I love great hockey. I really love playoff hockey. And the Kings/Hawks series was just that.. Great playoff hockey. Period.
So to all the Hawks fans that have been asking questions and wondering what happened to their beloved team? The answer is...NOTHING! They played their best games against a tough as nails team that will most likely annihilate the Rangers in the Final.
There is nothing wrong with your scoring ability, your players heart, your line pairings and combos, your goalie, your coaching staff, or your organization. The only thing wrong is YOU. The fans that question anything about this team.
The Hawks are one of the best teams in the NHL and will be for years to come. When it came down to it, the Kings just got the pucks in the right spots, they got the caroms, they got the rebounds. That's it. Period. That's a big part of playoff hockey.
So from a Pens fan to the ever expanding kingdom of the so-called Hawk loyal, go back into hibernation. I know the true hockey fans want no part of you and I'm sure the real Hawks faithful don't either.
Let me clarify some things. Yes, I posted that. I am just tired of bandwagon fans who claim to be die-hard....regardless of what team you claim to like. There is no such thing. You can't wake up one day and decide you will bleed for your time, kill for your team, or die for your team (okay maybe a slight exaggeration but real fans are rabid). It doesn't work like that. Now the first paragraph where I talk about the "expletive deleted" thing, that happened. It happens a lot. Mostly by drunk or well on their way to be guys at bars that think no one else, especially those living in this area, should be allowed to cheer for another team.
But it also happens with these people that call themselves fans that were no where to be found in the 80s, 90s, or pre-Toews/Kane. If you are in the Chicagoland area, go to any sports bar and take a poll of everyone wearing a Hawks jersey with a current player name on the back. Ask them who Dirk Graham is. Ask them who Steve Larmer is. Ask them who Tony Amonte is. Ask who Tony Esposito is and you'll get "the guy from the Binny's Beverage Depot commercial." Then ask who Jeremy Roenick is and see how many say "That guy on NBC with the greasy hair". There are going to be exceptions, of course, but the norm is not what you would think. The rabid fan-base that the sports analysts talk about is largely an artificial one generated by recent success.
I enjoy hockey and as a fan of hockey, I love when people find the sport for the first time and realize there is something they have been missing. But what I don't like are the pretenders. Don't be one of these fans that is here when you win and criticizes, mocks, and eventually disappears when you lose. There is no reason to crucify your team because they don't win the championship, regardless of the sport. If you can make it one step from the top, you made it one step from the top. No one else can say that except the one person/team in front of you. You are still among the best, you are still elite. Cherish that, because in today's sports, salary caps, free agency, and league parity have made it anyone's game.
For the Hawks, they will be back next year with a chip on their shoulder. Come playoff time, they will be sitting right there with the rest of the elite.