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Dealing with the Loss

I remember standing at the Joe, looking down at the scoreboard on the jumbotron, and watching the minutes close in on a Pittsburgh victory. As the Wings continued to pepper the net with shots as they applied pressure, the buzzer sounded ending Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

I continued to stand as I watched the Penguins pour onto the ice, throwing off gloves and tossing away their sticks. On the other end of the ice, the Wings' bright red jerseys stood in stark contrast to that of the white ice. Johan Franzen rested on one knee as he kneeled on the ice in despair.


I saw commissioner Gary Bettman hand the Conn Smythe over to Evgeni Malkin and later the Stanley Cup to captain Sidney Crosby. Once Crosby lifted the Cup over his head and started skating over to his teammates, I left. I had to watch him lift it because I may never see another Cup presentation in person, but that doesn't mean I had to stay and watch the rest of the team celebrate. I went downstairs to continue working. Since then, I have refused to read or watch any of the media coverage. I have read a couple of blogs, but that's it. I just can't handle it yet. I gave myself 48 hours to mourn the loss.

Right now, I still haven't read any articles. I'm instead looking at pictures from the 2008 Stanley Cup Finals and remembering how we won last year and the amazing season that we've had. And this year was a good season -- we went to the brink of the 2009 NHL playoffs.


I feel bad for Chris Osgood. He played brilliantly all postseason, saving the Wings in different situations and keeping the team in the game in others. He deserved the Conn Smythe (I'm not saying that he does over Malkin when Pittsburgh won) and the Cup and earmarking a spot in the Hall of Fame for himself.

I also feel awful for Marian Hossa -- not as bad as Ozzie though. What will probably forever be known as Hossa's Folly, he made it to consecutive Finals with two different teams only to lose both times. Sure, you can say that he struggled offensively so he's to blame. But I can only imagine how hard it had to be to see it happen to you twice and I cannot place the sole blame on Hossa. I hope and believe that he will sign with Detroit in the offseason to stay with the Wings.

The Wings had a great year and I'm very proud of them for returning to the Stanley Cup Finals for a second straight season. They overcame injuries, proving just how deep our team is, and adversity to become 60 minutes away from repeating as champs. Even without a Cup, I still believe that you can and should classify the Wings franchise as a modern day dynasty. The best part? I talked to Ken Holland before Game 6 in Pittsburgh and he believes his team will be a legitimate contender for the Cup (not just contending to be in the playoffs) for at least 3-4 more years. While this year's loss is obviously tough to swallow, I find it amazing that the Wings have been in the playoffs for 18 years and could easily continue that streak for many years to come -- in a salary cap era.

Thank you to the Wings for another great playoff run and giving us metro Detroiters something else to think about this spring. Thanks to the WIM readers, which increased in numbers during the postseason, for visiting our blog and commenting on the games and news. Thanks to the bloggers who joined WIM just before the playoffs -- their help was invaluable this year and their contributions were great.