Bob Macajew, among the most insufferable of hockey fans, is losing no time in dancing on Pronger's grave. And, sure, as has been detailed elsewhere--in loving detail--the first minus-five of Pronger's career didn't exactly come at an opportune time.
But it's his response that makes me esteem Pronger even more highly than I had already.* "Day to day with hurt feelings"? What, Letterman's writing for Pronger now? In defeat, having spent 60 minutes getting his ass handed to him, he's displaying more class, wit and personality than the entire pork-stuffed, cholesterol-clotted city of Chicago has mustered in my sports lifetime.
I'm a terrible winner. In the wake of a win, I indulge in bragging, prancing, preening, endlessly patronizing pseudo-consoling of the bested, the works. I particularly like never, ever letting the memory of a Collision victory fade. I'm a pretty good loser. I can be gracious, I can stick around while the victors are celebrating, I can hold my head high and talk about the pain and the reasons for the loss with some dignity. This is because I have lost a lot. In sports terms, I am in fact a loser. Chris Pronger, however, is not a loser. So I'm impressed.
(Sure, he's probably just exhibiting a world-class case of the short memory you'd have to have to be a world-class athlete, but I don't care. I shall fetishize what I choose, sir. And look good doing it.)
--Collision (minus 2, one giveaway, 4 PIM)
*Well, in two respects. First, as Bourne argues from time to time, in a meme I think Wyshynski introduced, Chris Pronger makes a phenomenal heel. Come to think of it, he has a pretty potent Rowdy Roddy Piper vibe to him. Second, this is what I call a playoff crush. You watch a guy on a monster playoff run and kind of fall for him. You spend a lot of your time doodling "Avs acquire veteran Pronger"** on your notebook. You sketch a jersey with his name and number on your Chucks. And then you look and see that your organization has brought David Koci back to get his ass kicked another 15 times next year.
**But how? We don't have Lupul to trade for him!