As a lifelong Wings fan, I’ve had a good selection of teams to dislike; the Ducks, the Penguins, the Predators all leap to mind. But there is one team that I will never merely "dislike" but always "hate": the Colorado Avalanche.
Yes, the Avs-Wings rivalry has dissipated since that 7-0 beatdown in Game 7 of the 2002 Western Conference Finals (the 2008 Conference semis sweep somewhat cemented this notion in the minds of many), but my hate for them continues to burn. I will never forgive Claude Lemieux for what he did to Kris Draper in 1996, and I will never forget how he turtled on March 26, 1997. I will never forget Patrick Roy’s incredible arrogance, his need to fight every Detroit goalie, or the Statue of Liberty in 2002. I will never forget Mike Keane suggested that Draper enlisted McCarty to fight for him. I will never forget Marc Crawford screaming like a little kid at Scotty Bowman.
But when I remember these things, it reaffirms my everlasting love for the Wings. I’ll always remember Igor going after Forsberg to start the melee, and Shanny intercepting Roy at center ice so he couldn’t go after McCarty. And it makes watching all the goals in the 7-0 victory even sweeter.
In conclusion: yes, the Ducks are dirty, the Penguins are led by a crybaby, and the Predators’ captain is a turd. I dislike them all. But even though there’s a new crop of players in Colorado, it doesn’t mean I hate them any less. However, I can’t watch these teams play again until a deal gets done so MOVE IT ALONG. And go Wings.