Player we love: TJ Oshie
FEBRUARY 15 2014: A DAY THAT WILL LIVE IN (relative) INFAMY. You see, 2/15/14 was the day of The Shootout. It was the day of TJ Sochi. It was the day America went into mother Russia and cleaned the clocks of those Damn Commies in their own country. Uh, in a shootout.
But not any shootout.
A shootout owned by ONE MAN
It hardly even matters that the USA didn't end up medalling because this shootout was SO EPIC, this performance SO HARDCORE that pfft who even cares what happened after.
(I care. I care a lot. But that's a story for another day.)
TJ Oshie was obviously well-known by NHL fans around the league before this game, but his 4-for-6 performance in the shootout against goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky (who isn't exactly a schlub!) catapulted him onto the great American stage. Suddenly people in bars at ten in the morning across the country were full of people chanting this guy's name.
Seriously, watch this video, it's great.
The Blues have their problems and not everyone may enjoy watching them, but after February 15, if you're American and you won't admit that TJ Oshie is one of the NHL players you can't help but love, you're either a liar or a secret Russian.
There's also an important runner-up to consider here though.
Listen up: David Backes is an American hero who loves freedom and saving puppies and kittens from the mean streets of Sochi and St. Louis. A search on hockeyplayerswithpets.com, who are the authority on such things, turns up three entire pages of Backes (and his lovely wife Kelly) rescuing various critters around the world.
I MEAN JUST LOOK
So amazing. He's always one of the Blues' more prolific scorers too, which is nice.
Player we hate: Steve Ott
"Where's Brave Steve? THERE HE IS!"
It's been six damn years and we all still hate Steve Ott. Why? It's not because of his time with the Sabres, a fairly brief stint spanning the lockout-shortened season and half of last year, but rather because of his time with Dallas, an epoch in which the Bruins didn't even see the Stars that often. And yet he's somehow THAT much of a jackass that many Bruins fans would have had him listed right up there on a list of players in the league we hate above all else.