Winning at Home

As I type this, I’m watching the last game of the Stanley Cup Finals.  I am not a hockey fan, but there’s a Boston team on the verge of a championship, so I’ll pay attention.  Besides, I know some Bruins players besides Bobby Orr.  Like Adam Oates.   And Ray Bourque.  And Cam Neely.  And probably no one who currently plays for the team.

They’re playing the final game in Vancouver.  As the Bruins have a 3-0 lead with eight minutes to go, I suspect they may win this thing…in Vancouver.  The wrong city.  They should win at home.

Earlier this week, we saw the Dallas Mavericks clinch the NBA title in Miami.  It’s so awkward watching the celebration when that happens.  The home crowd doesn’t know what to do.  Do they exit quickly to avoid the winning team’s jubilation?  Stand in stunned silence?  Applaud politely for the victors?

Each time the Red Sox won the World Series in the last decade, they were away.  The first time, in 2004, I didn’t mind so much.  In fact I didn’t care at all — I was just so deliriously happy that they finally got the monkey off their back.

The second series win, in 2007, came late on a Sunday night if I remember correctly.  I watched the final out and saw the team rush the field again.  I was happy, yes.  But after a few moments I wistfully said, “I just wish they could clinch at Fenway….”  So many dedicated fans…so much history…it seems tragic that they couldn’t just once have it happen in front of their home crowd.  (But hey, there’s always this year, she said cautiously.)

Unfortunately, at the time I was sitting with a Cubs fan and a Twins fan, so you can imagine how much sympathy I was offered at that moment.  Two sets of eyes looked upon me with daggers of contempt.

Two plus minutes to go and another goal.  I’ll call it here and say congratulations, Bruins.  Fellow New Englanders, it’s a great time to be a fan.

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