Can we all stop it now?
The Detroit Red Wings captured their 11th Stanley Cup (only Montreal with 24 and Toronto with 13 have more) with a 3-2 victory over the determined Pittsburgh Penguins finishing them off four games to two.
But the Wings won more than just the Cup. They put an end to an irritating discussion that’s been littering the airwaves and print media.
For months all we heard was how a European captain never won a Stanley Cup. As if this historical fact was some sort of knock against them. All I've heard during the post season was how many Europeans didn't do this and how many didn't do that.
Well, a damn European captain – the great Niklas Lidstrom – has finally won the Stanley Cup. Now an entire continent has preserved its honor! Pass the Ricola!
Wait, it gets better. Swedish phenom Henrik Zetterberg won the Conn Smythe! That’s a double whammy.
When I listen to or read sports commentators I would prefer enlightened thoughts on a particular topic or issue. Not gutter talk that plays down to the lowest common denominator.
And there wasn't a more overrated frivolous topic of discussion this year than the one that surrounded European players and their inability to captain Stanley Cup winning teams.
There is no explanation for this but if I had to guess, and that’s exactly what I’m doing, this fact possibly had more to do with Europeans adjusting to the North American style (which puts a lot of emphasis on physical play) and a sheer numbers game than anything else. Think about it…when did the Europeans start coming in high numbers? The late 1970s?
Reading the roster on the Red Wings official website, Detroit won the Cup with 10 Canadians, four Americans and 14 Europeans (nine of which are Swedes) in their line-up. Not to mention an abnormal amount of red beards. Hmm, nine Swedes. That deserves a nickname. How about, let’s see, Detroit Golden Swedes? Detroit Swedentown? Okay, I’m stretching.
On a quick side note, would it have killed the good fans of Pittsburgh to at least pretend to clap their hands while Lidstrom hoisted the Cup and the subsequent ceremonial skating the ice with Lord Stanley's beautiful Cup?
I'm just saying.
And so another NHL season comes to a close and a special thank you to the Detroit Red Wings for: a) showing how to build and maintain a successful franchise and B) obliterating the myth that you can't win with 'Peans.
Now everyone else crawl back to your desks (or the piece of furniture of your choice) and come up with better stories.