So I know this is week-old news, and I also know that I should be working on my post for the lovely Abby over at Bright Yellow World (I promise I’ll get to it soon!), but I’ve had this comparison in my head for awhile now.

And I didn’t mean to abruptly quit when November ended. It was more like work snowballed me under, plus I had a job interview yesterday to prep for (I’ll find out Monday, cross your fingers for me!), plus I only had spare time to sleep and maybe eat.

But! Here I am! Home from work after almost 10 hours, so I didn’t make it to the gym, which magically means I have some extra time! Not sure how that math works out, but nonetheless!

So, last week, as most of you probably know (unless you’re living under a rock that is buried under the tundra somewhere under the dead moose carcasses that SP The Horrible is leaving in her wake), LeBron James went back to Cleveland with his new team. Apparently the crowd had some signs, and there was a fair bit of booing, but overall the Sports Center commentators thought the fans were pretty well-behaved and tasteful.

I’ll admit, we watched the much more important (to us, anyway) San Jose Sharks v. Ottawa Senators game the same night.

And so, um, tasteful and well-behaved? Not so much the hockey fans that night. To the point where the Sports Center people even pointed it out! And there’s almost never any hockey love on Sports Center!

It was the game in which Dany Heatley returned to his old rink to play against his old team.

Back in 2009, Dany basically (so I understand it) requested/demanded a trade since he wasn’t happy with the way things were in Ottawa. They arranged a deal to send him to the Edmonton Oilers. Well, if you watch hockey, you know the Edmonton Oilers, especially last year, were/are not particularly great. They didn’t win a single game in January of 2010 (I think).

Dany said no. Flat-out refused.

So a new deal was constructed, one that sent him to us in San Jose in trade for Milan Michalek and Jonathan Cheechoo. James F actually had a hat signed by Michalek and Cheechoo, which we referred to for most of last year as the “I’ll give you this hat for Heatley hat”.

And Dany Heatley really shined last year. He scored 39 goals for us, I think, and played excellently on the first line with Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau. We had a great year, and made it to the conference finals, losing to the Blackhawks. (Grrrr.)

So the game last Thursday was the first time that Heatley had returned to Ottawa. They came here to San Jose to play last year, and we skunked them. But he hadn’t been back to play them.

The booing apparently started 20 minutes before the players even made it onto the ice. During the game, anytime Heatley stepped onto the ice, there was loud and continuous booing. It was actually kind of useful to signal when line changes were happening! And the booing never really diminished. It lasted the whole 60 minute game. Every time Heatley was out there.

At one point in the third, when we were up several goals, a big group of guys came down to the rink and all threw their old Heatley jerseys onto the ice. Pretty well orchestrated, to tell you the truth.

There were also a lot of “Traitor” chants throughout the game, and a lot of signs using “H(e)ATE(ly)” in various phrases.

And finally, at the end of the game, which we won 4-0, the fans who were still left started throwing things at our players (that’s a bit too far, in my opinion). Heatley all but dived off the bench toward the dressing room the minute the horn sounded.

So really, for all the hype and fanfare of LeBron leaving Cleveland, for all the broohaha over his return, when it comes to commitment, be it for your team or against the other team, hockey fans can take basektball fans any day.

Oh, and two nights later when we played in the somewhat-neighboring city of Montreal? Heatley got booed there, too.

I’ve gotta give credit to fans that are that dedicated to their teams. Hockey is a great sport.

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