Monday, September 17, 2012

An Opportunity

We’re all in the same boat right now.

We’re all going through withdrawals of a lack of hockey due to the lockout. And even if there wasn’t a lockout, there wouldn’t be games yet anyway. But it’s the anticipation of countless months without our life, our breath, our faux-religion, our sport that is the very essence of our life sometimes.

And we’re all pissed off beyond belief. For the second time in the past eight years (and third time in Gary Bettman’s reign), we have to endure a work stoppage due to… who the hell even knows or cares at this point. We are fed up, and we want to be treated like we matter in this decision because, after all, we’re the ones who help bolster revenue, fan attendance, all the stuff they seem to argue over, and yet they never seem to count us in.

We bluff like we won’t come back. We lie and say, “We won’t watch games when this is all said and done, we’re done being jerked around!” But we cannot survive without our sport. They are making us suffer, and it isn’t fair.

We really shouldn’t have to suffer. We should be allowed to live in our fictional (or delusional) world where CBA negotiations ended back on July 1st with both sides coming to terms on a new eight year CBA with very little strife between the two sides. We should be allowed to live in our fictional world where the 2012-13 season starts uninterrupted at the beginning of October. So let’s live in that fictional/delusional world!

Here’s what I’m proposing:

The Detroit Red Wings’ Mock 2012 Season
I had this idea last week when I lost all hope during negotiations. I want to mock up the results of games and write reviews of what would have happened, any significant injuries, awesome goals, outstanding players, lousy players, any miraculous returns of retired Swedish defensemen…stuff like that. Just so that we can pretend, at least for a few minute a day, that our team is still around and not spread all over Europe on teams that don’t have winged wheels on their jerseys.

I can’t be the only person to have thought of this option, but let me explain it a little bit first.

What It Is: Writing and posting articles the morning/day after a game would have taken place, giving the brief facts (date, game played, final score, goalie stats, who scored goals) and then launching into a recap of what happened – not necessarily a play-by-play account, but a thorough explanation of goals, saves, fights, penalties…anything you would want to know.

What It Is NOT: An excuse to have the Red Wings go 82-0 like that Verizon commercial with theFlyers’ perfect season where they lose in the first round of the playoffs. As much as we would love to see our team go undefeated in the regular season, that’s a little too farfetched.

I want this to be realistic. I want people to be upset if I have the Red Wings lose 6-2 against the Islanders or the Oilers and drop to third in our division, like they would be upset had it actually happened. I don’t want this to be a joy ride just to get our kicks. I want it to be as similar as possible to an actual 82- game season.

I want to experience a hockey season. And I know you do, too. All the wins, the losses, the heartaches, heart attacks, and the sheer willpower and nerves that goes into it all. I want hearts to break when injuries are announced just as the player was getting on a hot streak.

THE CATCH: I could do this by myself. I could make it extremely in depth and thorough, but I think my real life job would end up firing me for not doing my work. I could accomplish this on my own, but why would I want to do something like that? Why not give other diehard fans a chance to give their input on the outcome of games, or become a blogger for a game or two? Why leave all the creative fun to myself?

I do not know how much interest there will be in this; whether the number will be just a handful or whether it will be a staggering amount. I can’t be the first hockey blogger to think of this option.

Depending on how people react will depend on how I go about planning this. If there is a lot of interest and participants, I’ll set up a completely different blog and we’ll coordinate everything. If not, it will remain here at Franzenmuth (or perhaps over at the Red Wings section of The Checking Line. TBD).

If you have any interest at all – whether it be a guest writer for a game or twelve or just to give input on some of the matchups – please either leave a comment here or tweet/DM me on Twitter. I will contact you when I have a good grasp on how this is going to play out.

In the words of Red Green, "I'm pulling for you. We're all in this together."

Twitter: @franzenmuth