Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Hockey How-To: Picking a Secondary Team

Toronto, second in my heart. <333333

Picking a second favorite team is often a difficult challenge for a hockey fan. Everyone has their favorite team, whether you're born into your fandom, or establish it later in life you always have YOUR team. My team is the LA Kings, always has been always will be, but I also have my secondary team, the Toronto Maple Leafs. Having that secondary team is a right of passage of sorts for a hockey fan. It's like taking the next step in your relationship with hockey, you love hockey and having just one team isn't enough. It takes dedication to invest your emotions in two different teams. Some people establish their second team organically, such as a parent or friend being a fan and you latching on, or by a magical shirt. It's an easy way to pick that other team, but for others finding that special second someone can be more challenging. Well I'm here to help! Here's a little how-to guide on establishing your hockey honey on the side.

  • Make sure your the team you pick is in the opposite conference of your favorite team. This will help limit those awkward games when your two teams play against each other. It's also good come playoff time, since your two teams won't be competing against each other to get in. 
  • Pick a team that has different qualities than your favorite team. Does your team play a defensive minded game? Pick a team who plays more run and gun. Your team has average goal tending? Pick a team with a Vezina candidate between the pipes. This helps avoid the redundancy of watching the same type of hockey over and over. It keeps things fresh and keeps you interested. 
  • Pick a team based on a player. Sure it seems kinda shallow, but if there's a player you just love why not root for his team? I know this gets a little tricky if he's traded, but hey it's worth the risk. 
  • Pick a team based on something stupid. Sounds weird right? Well say you like a teams jersey, or heritage, or logo, why not root for them and see where it goes. Often when your attracted to a team for a reason you can't explain they're a good choice for you.
  • Take your time and explore your options. Don't lock yourself up right away. Play the field a little. Check out some games and see where it goes. You may just pick a team without even knowing it. 

Now I know picking this team may be a little scary for those with commitment phobia. But don't fret there's another way of going about this. It's called the Hockey Fling! Personally I pick a new hockey fling every season. I base this usually on something random, this year my hockey fling is the Florida Panthers. I've always liked the Panthers, but never considered them one of my teams. Both the other teams I root have been terrible for years too, and I just didn't have room for another. This year they decided to redo half their roster and I was intrigued. They also decided to trade for Kris Versteeg and by now you should know how I feel about him. So I decided to replace my former fling, The Washington Capitals, with the Panthers. Yea it seems a little harsh to just throw away a team like that, but hey I gave them a full season of my attention and emotion, it was a good run. Will the Panthers stick next season? Maybe, who knows, that's the beauty of the fling you can end it whenever you want. Hey maybe your fling will turn into the real deal.

So get out there guys and girls and find that second team you'll love almost as much as your first!

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