SBS Stadium Series: A Night at The Joe

Written by :
Published on : January 5, 2016

 

 

Every year for the holidays I make a trip back home and on that trip, I visit one of my favorite places in all of the world. It’s a place that is very familiar to me. I know it well. The smell, the feel of the concourse under my feet, that bite of cold air as I descend the stairs to my usual Christmas holiday seats on the glass. To me, this is hallowed ground. The holiest of sporting venues. A place where legends have been made, and champions have been crowned. It is the historic Joe Louis Arena, affectionately known as The Joe. It’s in Detroit, Michigan and it is by far my favorite place to watch any type of sporting match.

 

And sadly, it’s days are numbered.

 

Upon arrival, my first thoughts were on how this could be one of my last few times in this wonderful building that has been the location of so many fond memories. It added a shade of melancholy to the joy that I usually feel once I set foot inside the building. Not necessarily sadness, just a thought in the back of my mind that very soon these halls will be empty and the banners will be moved up Woodward to the new, as yet unnamed arena, set to be ready for the start of the 2017-2018 NHL season.

 

Red Wings Banners
                                                         All these banners will soon have a new home

 

One of my favorite things about the arena is the fact that isn’t named after some mega-corporation. No, it carries the name of, perhaps, the most legendary sporting figures in the history of the great city of Detroit. Along with Madison Square Garden, it’s the only arena in all of the NHL that lacks corporate sponsorship, and I love it. I hope with every part of my being that somehow the new stadium will be free of the chains of corporate sponsorship. And like Joe Louis Arena, it will be erected to honor those that have made a difference in the place that was once one of the most important arms in the Arsenal of Democracy. I’m afraid that might be too much to hope for, but that’s a discussion for another time.

 

This game featured my beloved Detroit Red Wings versus the New Jersey Devils. It didn’t go exactly as planned, as the Wings started Jimmy Howard and his overblown contract in net. Jimmy helped the Wings start the game with a 3-0 deficit in the 1st period, despite only seeing 6 total shots. Coach came to his senses after goal number three and replaced him with the, at this point in his career, more talented Petr Mrazek. After that, the game was far more exciting and the Wings gained on the Devils only to lose the game 4-3.

 

A view of the action
                                                                                  A view of the action

 

That’s ok though, I’m was happy just to be back home at the Joe, and there’s nothing like the energy in that place when everyone is chanting “Let’s Go Red Wings!” and those players are battling it out right before your eyes. The $19 double jack ‘n cokes were flowing and my comrades and I were in it together, cheering on our boys in red and white. There are few feelings quite like that and sometimes that’s enough. Sure, a win would have been nice, but just being there was a win in my book.

 

Another bonus was that this was the first time I had the chance to see the Wings’ exciting new rookie player, Dylan Larkin play live. He added yet another goal to a rookie season that has far exceeded expectations. This kid is the real deal and if you ask me he is the next Red Wings’ captain-in-training. It’s going to take a while, but he’s that good. When you think about the fact that he is the first teenager (19) to play in a game for the Wings since Steve Yzerman in 1983-84, it’s almost too perfect. And he’s from Michigan!?!? It just makes too much sense, he has to be the next guy to wear that “C” on his jersey.

 

That’s my prediction for next captain of the Detroit Red Wings, you heard it here first. Only it won’t be here. Not in The Joe. I guess I’ll have to get used to that. After all, the only thing constant in this world is change. That’s ok, I still have the rest of the season and then the next. Then it will just be memories, and what great memories they are!

 

 


A Detroit Sports Fan’s Christmas Wish List

Written by :
Published on : December 25, 2015

 

 

 

 

As we spend the holiday with family, feeding both our gluttonous faces and the capitalist machine, I thought I would take a minute to do what most Americans do around this time. Dream about the things they don’t have and probably never will. In order to do that, I made a Christmas Wish List of all the athletes that I wish my teams would acquire, either by free-agency, trade, or kidnapping if necessary.

 

 

Yoenis Cespedes

 

This a weird one because it’s a dream of mine that was reality for a short time. For just about a year, my favorite Cuban-born player was on the Detroit Tigers. Once they realized the season wasn’t going anywhere, the team traded him away in the midst of an all-star caliber season. Cespedes was a very important piece on the Mets teams that went deep in the playoffs. He is looking for a big payday in free-agency. I say the Tigers should break out some serious cash and bring him back to the Motor City.

 

 

Kevin Durant

 

If the Pistons could somehow get Kevin Durant on the floor with Andre Drummond and Reggie Jackson, then this team would be very scary. He’s just the type of wing player that this squad needs. He can shoot the ball, take it to the hole, rebound and defend with the best of ’em. He’s an absolute monster all of over the court and can single-handedly change the outcome of a game. In fact, the other night he hit the go-ahead shot, and followed it up with a game-saving block to seal the win over the Clippers.

 

Aaron Donald

 

Now this is someone that should already be on the Detroit Lions’ roster. They had the chance to draft the defensive tackle with the 10th pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, but passed him up to take TE Eric Ebron. That has proved to be a poor choice when you consider Ebron’s inconsistent production, the loss of their top-3 DTs in free agency, and the fact that Donald absolutely destroyed the Lions two weeks ago for 3 sacks. If he was on the team, I would be like Ndamukong “Who”?

 

Jamie Benn

 

For the final selection on my Detroit Sports Fan’s Christmas Wish List, we’ve got the captain of the Dallas Stars, Jamie Benn. This guy has it all. He’s young and plays the entire length of the ice. He’s got 46 points in 35 games this season and would kill it on a line with any handful of young Red Wings. If he was on the team, they would have to be favorites to come out of their conference.

 

 

 

So there you have it, my Christmas Wish List for all four of my favorite professional sports teams. Leave a comment and tell us which superstars you’re wishing for this holiday.

 

 


The Scariest Athletes of All Time

Written by :
Published on : October 31, 2015

 

In honor of Halloween we take a look at some of the Scariest Athletes of All Time. These are players that strike fear into the hearts of both opponents and fans alike. They are the hard-hitting, ass kicking, monsters of the game. You definitely DO NOT want to fuck with these people.

 

 

Lawrence Taylor

Lawrence Taylor was a reckless monster on the gridiron, who no one wanted to go up against. With 142 career sacks, he was damn near unstoppable for the better part of a decade. He could do it all, and he did it with an intensity and viciousness that led him to be considered one of the top outside linebackers of all time and gained him a spot in the Hall of Fame. There’s no doubt many a retired offensive NFL player that still see Taylor in his nightmares. Oh yea, he was pretty wild off of the field too.

 

 

Mike Tyson


All you have to do is watch the above video of brutal Mike Tyson knockouts to know why he is here among the “Sports Monsters Hall of Fame.” During his prime, Tyson was amazing to watch and terrifying to imagine going up against. He made it look so effortless to absolutely destroy opposing fighters. His short stocky frame could deliver brain damage at will and he even once said he wanted to “eat Lennox Lewis’ children.” If that’s not scary, I don’t know what is.

 

 

Bill Romanowski

Known for his lack of self control, explosive temper and neck like a semi-truck, the 4-time Super Bowl Champion linebacker was a force to be reckoned with on the field. With no shortage of violent hits on opposing offensive players, he would make me shit my pants if I was a running back. This raving lunatic didn’t reserve his roid-induced rage just for the opposing team, and even once ended his teammates career but crushing his eye socket with a punch.

 

 

Bob Probert

As a well known enforcer, Bob Probert, did his best work with the gloves off. A throwback to the days of ‘old time hockey’ when fighting wasn’t seen as taboo. He was one of the toughest players ever to step out on the ice. He was willing to put his body through whatever it took to get the job done. If that was the case then imagine what he would be willing to do to you if you were unfortunate enough to get in his way? During the pinnacle of his career in the 1987-88 season, he amassed an outlandish 398 penalty minutes, and still managed to tie for 3rd on the Red Wings with 62 points. Rest in Peace, you beautiful beast.

 

Brock Lesnar


Just look at this guy and tell me he isn’t the scariest fuckin’ thing you’ve ever seen. He is an imposing ball of human muscle and raw animal aggression. He now resides in the fantasy world of WWE but when he was in UFC he could beat you with the submission or the knockout and has left more than a few of his opponents with soiled underwear. If you see him in an alley, run!

 

 


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