DKM Hockey Podcast

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Be the Fifth Line

We are Columbus, Ohio.

We are the biggest city in this great state, the seventh-largest in the USA. We are the best-kept secret in the Midwest (which, in itself, is the best-kept secret in America). We are home to world-class universities and corporations and arts and culture; vibrant neighborhoods and a rich history. Columbus offers all the amenities of a big city with friendliness and accessibility that cannot be boasted by many its size. We have a vibrant economy and a gorgeous, clean downtown; we have a city that just keeps getting better.

Chin up, Columbus. Quit slouching around like you’re inferior, because you’re not.

We are the home of the Columbus Blue Jackets.

That’s not a minor-league team for those of you who are keeping score….that’s a franchise in the National Hockey League, the best hockey league in the world, with the most talented players in the world, in a game that takes a hell of a lot of talent to play.

Tired of Columbus being a Buckeye town? Stop whining about it, and stop acting like it’s a competition. Great cities have diversity in their sports teams, and they support them all. If you’re inclined to be a fan of The Ohio State University, then be one….embrace the fact that our city has big-time football and basketball programs that routinely run with the best in the country. Embrace the fact that we’ve got reigning NCAA champions in tennis and rowing and wrestling. Embrace the fact that our own Columbus Crew of Major League Soccer has won a championship in its league. Then go out and cheer for the Blue Jackets to follow suit. This town knows how to win championships, and should expect nothing less from all of its competitors.

Furious about a bad call by the referees or the Toronto war room? It happens to everyone. Get over it. Overcome it, that’s what great teams do. The refs aren’t out to get us, so stop with the conspiracy theories. Quit sulking like a small team in a small city, and act like a team that has its hand clutching the throat of the playoffs. Just a couple more wins, and we’re in the NHL’s second season....right where we should expect to be. Right where we belong. And we’ll be there ahead of conference foes like New Jersey, Toronto, Ottawa, Carolina and the New York Islanders, who have won a combined 25 Stanley Cups between them.

Outraged that the rest of the country doesn’t see Columbus as a “hockey town?” Become one. Support the Blue Jackets night in and night out. Fill the seats when teams like Detroit and Chicago and Pittsburgh come to town, instead of letting fans from those hockey towns treat our barn like home ice. Find a friend who isn’t a hockey fan yet, and bring him/her to a game. It doesn’t take long to get bitten by the hockey bug. Go watch Ohio State play Big Ten hockey against some of the other best teams in the country. Support your local high school’s varsity or club team. Take your kids skating at one of the Chiller rinks around the city. Teach them that some of the greatest games played in Central Ohio happen on ice, not just fields and courts.

Be proud to be from Columbus and to call it home. Be proud of our Blue Jackets, and support them however you can as they make their run into the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Be the Fifth Line.

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