I am not one to shy away from banter. Actually, you are likely to find me initiating and encouraging a little jousting between my fellow FanSided NHL writers. There is always one witty (*cough* not really *cough*) mock that I hear time and time again. The wordplay may be used differently, but it forever returns to NASCAR.
Whether it is in reference to the lack or fans in the arena, or how dim-witted the puckheads are in Carolina, folks outside of the south love to throw NASCAR in their rapid-fire teasing. On Twitter, I’ve received a #StickToNASCAR hashtag. I’ve been informed the lack of attendance at the RBC Center is due to the large masses of Bud-drinkin, overall-wearing race car lovers being drawn to Carrabus County NASCAR Country instead of the ice rink.
Although humorous at times, it can be frustrating to witness the lack of people showing to support the Hurricanes or the Charlotte Checkers. The Checkers have been playing stellar playoff hockey. They conquered their East Division rivals, the Hershey Bears, to an average home field showing of about 4,500 at the Time Warner Cable Arena. The Bears averaged nearly 8,000 fans a night.
As an Ohio gal growing up appreciating hockey, I am making a pitch to my new NASCAR-loving neighbors. These two sports have a lot more in common than one may think. By no means am I suggesting you choose between sticks and wheels. Just give pucks a chance.
The transition between the sports could be quite seamless…
If you adore the quick racing action around the track, then you will love the puck whipping action across the similar shaped rink.
If you can’t get enough yelling and boozing, then you will fit right in at a hockey contest.
If you get a kick out of screaming fun names like Jimmie, JJ and Bobby, then you will just love cheering for Jussi, Joni and Ruutu.
If you worship the rubbing of NASCAR, then you will drop your jaw watching the hard hits of hockey.
If you respect a sport the whole family can enjoy, then attending a Canes or Checkers game completely fits the bill.
If you admire the speed of a 200 mph vehicle, then you can respect a puck traveling 90-100 mph after being hit by a player that can skate between 20-30 mph.
If you’re actually fond of the repetitive roaring of the speedway, then you’ll be keen on the rhythmic chants of “Let’s Go Canes” or “Holtby, Holtby…You Suck!”
So come on motorway fans, between races exchange your Jimmie Johnson t-shirt for a Mike Murphy sweater and I promise you fun-filled sixty minutes. Start Monday at 7:00pm with a thrilling Checkers game. They are tied 1-1 in a second round series with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. Attend these AHL playoff games and get your wheels warmed up for the September return of the Carolina Hurricanes.