Sunday, June 10, 2001

Bourque's Cup

Ray Bourque has finally touched the Stanley Cup. He and the Colorado Avalanche defeated the New Jersey Devils in an epic seven game series, that had me emotionally spent by the end of it.

I told my wife when the Stanley Cup finals started, that I would emotionally invest myself in rooting for the Avalanche, for Ray Bourque. I told her that she could for the Avalanche for Chris Drury, a fellow BU alumnus.

For me, I spent a heady seven nights watching this on TV. There were games where I was glued to the television. There were games where I could only watch it cowered behind the computer, watching web updates to a mute scoreboard.

When the Avalanche went down 3-2 in the series, I was thrust into a despair I hadn't felt in a long time. When the Avalanche tied it up 3-3 in New Jersey, I moved about in trepidation for forty-eight hours, until game 7. Everything I did on Saturday seemed frought with Stanley Cup significance: should I wear a certain shirt? which TV should I watch the Cup? should I have a take-out lunch in addition to dinner? should I shave?

Saturday seemed filled with other great sports. I rejoiced when Jennifer Capriati won the French Open in an epic third set, but I feared that her good fortune would 'cancel out' an Avalanche win. I enjoyed the quick two goal lead by the New England Revolution, but I couldn't bear to think that the sporting gods would deny me an Avalanche victory so that my local soccer team could win one at home. I hid all this from Jenn as best I could, but in the early evening, I told her that I was a big mess waiting for this game to begin.

And when the game finally started, and the Avalanche kept pulling ahead, I frequently changed the channel, not daring to believe that a victory was possible. But with five minutes to play, I could barely sit down. After the game, I was so keyed up, I stayed awake flipping through the local news and Ray Bourque led every local telecast.

I am relieved to be writing these words as a common sports fan. The team I rooted for won, and that's a very satisfying feeling.

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