Every team’s season comes to an end. For some fans it is the last game of the season. For some, lucky enough to see their team in the post season, it comes later. For the unlucky ones, next season can be over before it even starts. For me, the Colorado Avalanche’s season was over February 14th, 2011. Losing 9-1 to Calgary in what will forever be known as the Valentines Day Massacre, the Av’s were 7 games (all losses) into their horrendous 5-28 finish in what can be considered their worst season ever. This losing thing has become a recent and unwelcome trend for the Colorado Avalanche, and for me it is a bit of a new thing.
Not all new things are good.
Before the 06’/’07 season, the Avs had made the playoffs 10 years running, and only lost in the first round twice. Since missing the playoffs that year, then the Avs have appeared in the second season just twice. (NOTE: a few people will argue that if you finish above .500 and don’t make the playoffs, it’s not technically a losing season. These people are not to be trusted and you should inform local authorities ASAP. If you see something, say something.) Some fans have been losing for years. Some had to lose for a long time before getting to see a winner. And some fans may never get to see a winner. How you deal with the losing is how you separate the true fans from the band wagon ones. A lot of those pink Red Sox hats weren’t made before 2004. That arrogance that Phillies fans have is pretty annoying, but at least it’s justified. Mets fans could take a note or two. For me, I dealt with the ’08/’09 shitter of a season by the Avs a little bit differently than the way I dealt with this one.
For one, that season was the first sub-par .500 season I’ve ever witnessed the team go through. While this year was more of a shock, considering last years finish and that we had this guy in net, I at least knew how to handle the losing. That ’08/’09 was also the season I was 21, and when you couple that with working in the city, I spent a lot of those losses at the bar.
Looking like this
Maybe this season was easier to process because I’ve had the time to appreciate how far I’ve come as a fan. I began to follow this team shortly after the Whale left Hartford (but never my heart.) Within a few years, I got to see them win a Cup (the team’s second, but as a fan, my first.) You can’t enjoy the success if you don’t learn how to appreciate the failures. These losing season’s are hard to endure, but if it mean’s getting to really enjoy a good Cup run in a few years, than isn’t it all worth it? Isn’t that what we all want as sports fans, to enjoy the game? For the season-finale, the Colorado Avalanche went out with a bang, winning 4-3 in overtime in what was 19-year veteran defenseman (17 seasons with the Avs) and team captain Adam Foote’s last professional game. A season plagued by injuries, spent at the bottom of the standing since February, forgotten behind one last day of celebration and acknowledgment. At least, that’s how I’ll remember it.
Farewell Footer. Farewell losing season. Lets. Go. Fish.