Takes and trash talk from both ALL sides of the NHL's most obscure PATHETIC* rivalry

* Thanks, Kevin Lowe!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Moments in history: Luc Robitaille silences a drunk Earl Sleek

Well, in BoC news, the L.A. Kings have decided to retire good ol’ #20 for fan favorite Luc Robitaille on January 20th, in a game against the Phoenix Coyotes. This probably paves the way for Rob Blake to get his #4 up in the rafters in a few years also, in a little section they’ll call “Guys who we sent to cup-winning teams”.

Any way, flash back with me to November 9, 2001, back when Robitaille was a cupless wonder just getting started on his Red Wings career. I secured 2nd row seats to the Detroit-Anaheim game, invited some of my buddies (including one huge Detroit fan and one huge L.A. fan), and we proceeded to do our usual custom of pre-game drinking until we felt properly obnoxious. And boy, were we ready by game time.

Now the 2nd row can be a real treat for a fan who’s done his prerequisite drinking, because you have the ability to yell directly at a player skating by with the confidence that he can hear you. Don’t get me wrong; just because I heckle doesn’t mean that I don’t respect. Luc is a fantastic sniper who fashioned an incredible career and is probably in my top-50 favorite NHLers of all time; he just happened to be in the wrong building that day.

For this particular game, I was fixated on the fact that Lucky Luc’s next goal would be his 600th career goal. Every time he would skate nearby, I would stand up and yell, “Hey Luc! Five-ninety-nine!” Even my section got into it, to the point we would get looks from passing Red Wings, always a nice treat.

Well, before long, Luc had quite enough of me and my antics. He shoved a puck past J.S. Giguere on a 1st period power play and just like that, I was out of yelling ammunition. Luc, of course, got his proper ovation, and it even turned out to be the only goal of a 1-0 game, with the Ducks managing a paltry 19 shots at Hasek*.

So that’s how I saw a historical moment for Lucky Luc, and hey, I even tell myself that I was a part of making it happen. Congratulations, Mr. Robitaille, on one hell of a career. Glad I could be there for one of the big moments.

* A good source for hockey boxscores (since Sept. 1997) is here.

1 comment:

Doogie said...

That's an awesome story. The only "historic" moment I've seen live is Pisani scoring a shootout winner last year, which is not special until you realize that I had no concept of Pisani as anything other than a checker. I could claim, in hindsight, that it was a sign of things to come, and that I realized that night what MacT saw in him but I hadn't. That claim would be horseshit, of course, but...prove me wrong.

In other news, turns out Boyes actually scored 69 points last year, so 75, it seems, is well within standard deviation, after all.