- Was it because I got a defective glow stick?
- Was it because I was not in my normal warm up photo spot?
- Was it because I didn't see my friend George before the game? He swears that every time we say hello before a game the Kings win, but I was running late that day and missed him.
- Was it because Kelly Hrudey was in the building?
- Was it because all the press box guys were running out of phone battery?
- Was it because Dennis Bernstein had to be wrong JUST ONCE?
- Or maybe it's because the Hockey Gods know we're patient. They know we're willing to wait as long as it takes because the reward will be worth it.
And then I thought about Mike Richards. You see, I normally don't watch the players during the National Anthem, because the flag hanging from the rafters is behind me and I have to turn around to see it. But this night, I happened to glance at the Jumbotron and see him on the bench, eyes closed, head buried in his gloves as they perched on the end of his stick.
I could actually feel how much he wanted to win, how much he was praying for the strength to seize that moment. He's been through a Cup final before, and he knows it's a marathon, not a sprint.
And then I understood why the Kings lost. Because this isn't supposed to be easy. It's supposed to take blood, sweat and tears, with small pieces of your heart and soul thrown in for good measure. Because nothing this important is earned without sacrifice.
Because it's The Cup.
GO KINGS GO!