Ristos HockeyBlog
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Peter Forsberg loves hockey. Hockey’s the one thing that’s kept him focused through hard times, and God knows he’s been through some tribulations. At his lowest point, a few years ago, he even took a timeout from hockey, to recoup and regroup.

He just finished writing an 11-page report from the World Championships, with analysis and recaps of all the games and teams – in great detail. Then he sent the document to his friends.

Oh, oh no, this is not the Peter Forsberg who was traded from Philadelphia to Nashville this season. This is a Swedish friend of mine, or a friend of a friend who’s always good for a great talk about hockey.

And NHL hockey, for that matter. He’s not into the Swedish league that much. He loves the NHL.

I guess you have to love something to do what Peter’s about to do next. Now that he’s got the flame burning again, he’s thinking of getting his back tattooed with the logos of all the Stanley Cup winners since he was born. Each logo would have the years they won it underneath, so, for example, there’d only be one Oilers logo, but then all the years neatly underneath. And then he’s going to add new ones for the rest of his life.

(And, who knows, maybe he’ll have to add new rings to his body, just like the Cup itself).

He’s never seen an NHL game live, and yet there’s something about the game, the League, the Cup drive that gets a hold of his soul and sends it flying. He says that between 2003 and 2005 everything was just black, and “the only thing I had any interest in, was the Stanley Cup.”

Then there’s Jamie, the Avalanche fan that also happens to love the band Journey. In fact, she named her daughter Journey. Journey Alexa. The middle name Alexa is derived from Alex Ovechkin.

Her son, Patrick, was named after Patrick Roy.

(Alex was a nod to her husband, a Caps fan, there’s room for both in their household).

It’s Peter and Jamie that are the backbone of the NHL, the force that pushes the sport forward and upward. They’re also a nice reflection of the new kind of hockey fans, one in Sweden, the other in Denver, joined by their love for a game.

And I thought I was a hockey freak with my 50-plus hockey hats in the basement.

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