Picking your favourite NHL team isn’t as easy as it may seem
Just because I am a Penguins fan, does not mean that I want to have sexual relations with Sidney Crosby.
Everyone that has ever talked to me about hockey for roughly thirty seconds knows that I am a Pittsburgh Penguins fan, but it is not always easy to be a fan of the Penguins and be a woman.
Whenever someone asks me who my favourite NHL team is and I say Pittsburgh, they automatically think that either:
A. Sidney Crosby is the only NHL player that I know of and that is why I picked them,
B. I think Sidney Crosby is hot,
Or C. I want to have sex with Sidney Crosby.
But Crosby is not why I like the Penguins at all. I like them because I think their head coach, Dan Bylsma, is one of the best coaches in the NHL. I love his style of coaching and easy-going attitude. Also, after being part of his post-game scrum after the Penguins clash in Winnipeg he is very friendly and will even joke around with the media. He was also wearing a hilarious ugly Christmas sweater behind the bench, which I approved of.
I like Ray Shero as a General Manager of the Penguins. He trusts the other people to do their jobs and he isn’t sticking his nose where is doesn’t belong, a la Brian Burke.
Did I also mention that the Penguins won the Cup the year I was born? If that isn’t destiny, I don’t know what is. Finally, you’re co-owned by Mario Lemieux, what more do you want?
Now, I am not saying that I don’t like Crosby, or that I wasn’t happy that the Penguins won the lottery- literally- and drafted him. Of course I like him; he is an incredible playmaker, unselfish on the ice and makes every player around him better.
But because I am a woman, it is expected that he is the sole reason that I have picked Pittsburgh as my favourite. If one of my male friends says that they like Pittsburgh, it is assumed that the Penguins are a legitimate team for them to pick and that surely they liked them even before Crosby was around.
Recently, I have considered changing my favourite team to avoid this mess all together, or at least lying to people and telling them I like a different team. If I picked another team as my favourite, even if it wasn’t entirely true, I feel as though I would be taken more seriously.
However, there is a delicate balance that must happen when NHL teams are involved. If you pick a team like Edmonton, you are seen as an idiot because everyone – even those who know nothing about hockey – knows that they suck. If you pick Toronto, you have nothing to cheer about, ever. Also, there are certain players, namely Dany Heatley, whom I refuse to cheer for any team that they are associated with, because they are scum of the earth.
You can now see the predicament that I am in.
I shouldn’t have to consider changing my favourite team in order to please others and be taken seriously as a hockey fan.
But, for now, I plan to stand by my black and yellow boys even considering that having another favourite team would just make me feel hollow inside, and that void can only be filled by Sidney Crosby, and the rest of the Pittsburgh Penguins.