The year was 2011 (way back then, remember?), and Martin Brodeur was enjoying the last year of his contract. Sure, his New Jersey Devils were coming off an extremely disappointing previous season, but they had been turning things around near the end. Gone were the days of being completely hamstrung by the salary cap where New Jersey couldn't ice a full bench (what a bunch of losers!). Instead, 2012 featured a far more impressive team. They pulled out wins in overtime to finish off their playoff series in dramatic fashion and were set to send out Brodeur, a sure fire Hall of Famer, with one more Cup victory
INSTEAD they met up with the Los Angeles Kings who were busy running over everyone they came across that postseason.
The Devils lost in six games in the finals, with the last game being a total drubbing on the road. Adding insult to the pretty extensive injury at that point, Brodeur let in a lob from Matt Greene for the sixth and final goal of the season. It was quite possibly the last goal Brodeur would allow, in his last game where he got blown out. A pretty horrific end to a pretty incredible career.
So Brodeur came back. He couldn't go out like that. Like a total chump, that is. He asked the only team he ever knew for a little bit more. Just one more contract. Just enough to get his fix. They obliged, despite the fact he was 40 years old, and even went a step further by giving him a second year. A pretty loyal move seeing as Marty's stats were steadily declining over the past few seasons. But Brodeur was certain he could go out on top. He had been so close to the dream ending.
INSTEAD there was a lockout and half of the season got wiped out. Plus Zach Parise took off for crazy money in Minnesota. Then the Devils finished dead last in the Atlantic division again while Brodeur posted his worst save percentage for the Devils in his career.
But Brodeur had that second year! He would get the sendoff he deserved!
INSTEAD Ilya Kovalchuk would bail suddenly for Russia and the Devils would miss the playoffs again in the 2014 season. Brodeur posted another bunch of career lows, and had his contract wrap up. The Kings meanwhile were winning their second Stanley Cup.
Martin Brodeur, and his legacy, wound up like Brett Favre and his career: Desperately trying to win one last time, despite being way over the hill and actually being a detriment to their teams' chances of winning. So of course Brodeur had a Favre-like moment and joined a team that sucks balls in a feeble, fleeting attempt to be relevant. I guess it's only a matter of time before Brodeur joins an arch rival of his long time employer's. My guess is with the Rangers, backing up Lundqvist. I'm sure New Jersey will love that.
Anyways, it's all the Kings' fault. All they had to do was to let Brodeur win one more stupid time, and he would be done forever and going out respected and (relatively) well liked. Now Martin Brodeur is mocked mercilessly. Fans are ready for him to be gone, and even the old guard of hockey punditry can't believe he is still out there despite being long past his prime. Devils fans can only shrug when his name is mentioned, and maybe act surprised when someone mentions their franchise goalie is now a backup in St. Louis. Though all Brodeur needs to do is walk away. Let go, Martin. It's time to leave. Head towards the light. It's an illuminated Sizzlers' sign.
INSTEAD he has hung around like a bad fart that just won't clear out.
The Kings were up 2-1 going into the third period against the Blues a few nights ago.
INSTEAD they took two stupid penalties, gave up two power play goals, and then fell apart completely.
It was a pretty awful road trip by L.A., as their penalty kill blew two leads and looked atrocious in another. But the fancy stats are better apparently! Fuck you. Sutter swapped up the lines again but still won't try my genius take with Brown-Kopitar-Toffoli. Brown only looks competent when with Williams or Kopitar, and Toffoli is way too good to be on the fourth line. Now if only Kopitar would go back to being energetic raccoon instead of being a shuffling zombie. At least Gaborik started scoring. Now if Carter can try that, that would be great (which is why I also want Carter with Gaborik). Maybe go with King-Carter-Gaborik. That could be fun.
Prediction: Oh c'mon, you know Brodeur is getting a shutout after this post. Kings lose 3-0.