One goal to unite them all – 2011 Favorites

Well, after tonight’s bad loss to the Philadelphia Flyers – their third loss in the last four games – it seems my beloved Chicago Blackhawks have entered their annual January swoon. As usual, Patrick Kane was right in the middle of the action, for good and ill.

With about 8 minutes left in the game, the Blackhawks were down 4-2. Then Patrick Sharp took a 4 minute high-sticking penalty. With the penalty nearly killed, Brent Seabrook wristed in a short-handed goal to the ‘Hawks hope. (Using ‘Hawks’ as their nickname always throws me for a moment. I grew up in Davenport, Iowa. ‘Hawks’ is short for Hawkeyes for me, and always will be.)

26 seconds later, Jonathon Toews created a turn over, Sharp corralled the puck and got it to Kane, who was alone in the slot. Kane waited a moment then rifled the puck over the right shoulder of Flyer’s goalie, Ilya Bryzgalov, to tie the game. My son and I were pumped! It was Kane’s first goal in seven games and just his third in the last 20. He was due, to say the least.

Then a few moments later, Kane took a high-sticking penalty and of course the Flyers scored with 30 seconds left and won the game. [Le sigh.]

All of that to say, I need a little Blackhawks detox. I need a reminder of better days. And that’s were the best goal of 2011 comes in. Also courtesy of Mr. Kane.

December 14 the Blackhawks went to a shoot-out against the Minnesota Wild. Chicago was up 1-0 in the shoot-out and the Wild had already missed twice. Meaning, if Kane scored it would be the game winner. Take a look at the magic he conjured:

Ladies and Gentlemen, there you have it – my favorite goal of 2011!

Hey, whaddya know, I feel a little bit better already.

Today’s dose of awesome

It’s December 30, so everybody and his brother and sister are offering “best of 2011” lists of all sorts. I too have thoughts on best album, best songs and best picture of the year. But right now I don’t need to consider a year’s worth of content. Just this evening, I saw two videos that absolutely epitomize awesome. They are very different from one another, but they both make me very, very happy. I hope these bring you some joy as well.

First, my wife and I saw Mission: Impossible 4 tonight. It was everything everyone says about it: big, loud, tense and looks amazing without the burden of much substance. But seeing that movie meant seeing the Dark Knight Rises trailer! Now, I’ve always been more of a Marvel guy than DC. And I’ve already written that I can’t wait for May 4 when Avengers comes out. That said, for my money The Dark Knight is by far the Best. Comic. Book. Movie. Ever. It’s not even close.

Yet, somehow, based on this, DK Rises just might have a shot at being even better. Take a look:

 

Moving to a different sort of theatrics, here’s some sweetness from the man who (with Sidney Crosby sidelined indefinitely by concussion) is getting some pub as possibly the best player in the NHL right now: Chicago Blackhawk’s Captain, Jonathon Toews. I missed tonight’s game against the Red Wings, (because I was, you know, at the movies) but I saw this terrific goal.

There. Today’s dose of awesome. Now don’t you feel better?