The Carolina Hurricanes have done something truly magnificent. The Cinderella story is in full effect with the Canes entering the Eastern conference final…and no one seems to care.
The 2019 Carolina Hurricanes are a team I’ll tell my kids about.
Think about how we teach our kids to play sports. We ask them to play hard, to play smart, and to play together. We ask them to prepare, leave it all out on the ice; but, the most important thing we stress to our children, is to have fun.
It is nearly impossible for kids to view these qualities in modern sports. Sure, basketball players have fun, and football players celebrate, but the landscape is filled with immensely talented individuals. This is how it should be; professional sports are reserved for the best players on the planet.
But most people view these leagues as an endeavor reserved for the spectacular, something that requires more talent than teamwork, more ability then comradery, and more skill then discipline. But every once in a while, there comes a team that defies expectations. Not because of talent, but because of teamwork; that’s the Carolina Hurricanes.
The storylines that have formulated this group aren’t the norm for conference finalists in professional sports, they aren’t even uncommon; they shouldn’t have been. But the success of this team should be championed by the hockey media for this reason; they are what this sport is all about.
Yet, the mainstream hockey world has looked at us and seen only a team that was stolen from a truly deserving market; a basketball town asked to root for a sport they didn’t understand, then criticized when they didn’t show up. It feels like that resentment, that misunderstanding, still exists today.
The resilience of this team is a microcosm of this franchise’ place in the NHL landscape. Often forgotten, rarely mentioned, but loved by the fans, and always ready to make the most of their opportunity.