Red Wings Actually Quite Easy To Dislike

I'm not sure what the purpose was, but Terry Frei posted a piece on Saturday at the Denver Post that made my teeth hurt:

Can anyone really muster genuine enmity for this Red Wings team?

Yes, Terry, yes we can.  In fact, it's quite easy.

This is more about the Wings' organizational wisdom in scouting and selecting the right Europeans, often late in the draft, and assembling a roster that displays impressive combinations of skill, grit and savvy.

How can anyone hate that?

Well, it's quite simple.  When the Colorado Avalanche don't show a lot of organizational wisdom, and fail to coalesce a dominant roster, our ire turns to those teams that do.  The Red Wings, as you pointed out, are the best in the league at assembling strong rosters and making good organizational decisions.  That's why we hate them.  Well, those are two of the reasons.

Another reason: The dirty bastards can't even be trusted to hold the Stanley Cup.  Sure enough, during their "celebrations" at Chris Chelios' dirty dive bar, the sloppy drunks dropped the Cup and dented it.  (Hat tip to jd21 for noticing this story, too.)  Seriously, Mark Messier and all his strip club orgies in the 80s and 90s didn't do that much damage.

I wonder what the motivation was to write this.  Frei's piece doesn't really reveal anything newsworthy---we all know the Red Wings are good and won the Cup---and a European captain winning the Cup didn't really become the big controversy that a lot of the press thought it would, and it's not really a big deal that a lot of Detroit's players are from Europe.  This would probably have been earth-shattering stuff in the 1980s, but come on.  Canadian hockey fans are a conservative bunch, but they're not all-out xenophobes like Don Cherry.  At least not anymore. 

Why write a piece defending the Red Wings when he knows his target audience hates them?  It's not like he's now working for a Detroit newspaper. 

Maybe he should be.

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