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"Go Flames Go!"
Okotoks, AB • Canada •
In 2004, a young man (well, if you count 26 as young) got to live a dream of a lifetime and go to a Stanley Cup Finals Game. That young man was me, and being from Newfoundland where the closest NHL team is Boston (it could be Toronto, but I can't stand the Leafs) I never even got close to a pre-season game in my first 25 years of life.

That year, I experienced the greatest sports feeling in the world. Being a part of 19,000+ fans who are dedicated to one hockey team. Last year I was part of a season-ticket for the Flames and experienced games 1 & 7 of Round 1 against the Ducks. I didn't think it would compare at all to my first ever playoff experience. I was wrong. The atmosphere is created by those 19,000+ fans each and every playoff game.

This year I was lucky enough to get a ticket to last night's Game 3 against the Wings. The chills I experienced the night of the Stanley Cup Finals 3 years ago returned when the power ring in the middle of the Pengrowth Saddledome turned red - all red. The crowd drowned out anything audible, all you could hear was cheering broken up by "Go Flames Go!" every once and a while.

So to all NHL fans, especially those in historic hockey towns in the US like New York or Detroit, I ask you: What is it that doesn't make you want to cheer like the fans in Canada do? I watched both games from Detroit and even read the blogger from Detroit on here who could get 10 tickets from game 1. I don't care how long you've had regular season success, no excuse in the world could make me understand how all fans in all NHL cities couldn't be like the ones I celebrated with last night in the Saddledome.

With all that said, the next chant I want to hear is "FLAMES IN SIX! FLAMES IN SIX!"
Filed Under:   Flames   Red Wings   Fans   Playoffs  
April 18, 2007 6:21 PM ET | Delete
Nice blog sstrang! As a Nucks fan, I was expecting this reaction from Calgary..Congrats...Another topic: Did you realize that Bert "contaminated" the Wings good momentum? Im not saying that the Wings loss was his fault, but it seens that the Wings players were waiting that he did something, like a punch or a check.But Bert is not the same one.The Flames can explore it. Cheers.
April 18, 2007 6:21 PM ET | Delete
Nice blog sstrang! As a Nucks fan, I was expecting this reaction from Calgary..Congrats...Another topic: Did you realize that Bert "contaminated" the Wings good momentum? Im not saying that the Wings loss was his fault, but it seens that the Wings players were waiting that he did something, like a punch or a check.But Bert is not the same one.The Flames can explore it. Cheers.
April 18, 2007 7:34 PM ET | Delete
I have been to many hockey games in my life, but never to an NHL playoff game. I hope to attend one in the near future, but who knows. You are lucky to have been able to experience that atmosphere multiple times.However, I think it's shortsighted to say that the fans in the U.S. don't cheer like those in Canada. Obviously Canada is steeped in more hockey tradition than anywhere in the world, and so many people there are incredibly passionate about the sport. However, there are plenty of games and markets in the states who, at least in the playoffs, create an equally passionate atmosphere.The accounts I've heard of last nights Rangers game at Madison Square Garden said that it was deafening and the place was shaking the whole night.Credit definitely goes to Canadian fans, but there are incredibly passionate fans and incredible playoff atmospheres in many places.
Tav
April 19, 2007 2:31 AM ET | Delete
To be honest sstrang, I think you might catch some of the same experiences if you are a fan of whatever team - being a fan builds in part of its own awe factor if you will. The Sharks have a rocking building, as do the Stars, Habs, Sabres. I think tho, the real difference for the Flames experience is that the fans here do the C of Red right, it's all jerseys/t-shirts that we've bought - not handouts from the team - and it's just that little bit extra that makes it cool. :)
April 19, 2007 9:07 AM ET | Delete
Nothing beats having been in the house for game 7 of last year's SCF, but having been lucky enough to have been to 18 (of the 26) home playoff games in the past handful of years, the second best was probably the losing effort in game 6 of the first round series vs. the Devils, 2001. The game ended with a several-minute standing ovation for our Hurricanes even as they were eliminated and it was just an almost surreal experience that was even more enjoyable than game 7 of the 2006 ECF when we got to see a thousand Buffalo fans turn immediately silent and slink out of our building. There's nothing like playoff hockey... while the last game of the regular season this year was another incredible hockey memory of fan support for the team, nothing compares to playoff hockey, playoff tailgates, the atmosphere...
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