I was eagerly anticipating puck drop between these two talented squads, but upon entering the spacious and glamorous Nationwide Arena, I didn't know how I was supposed to watch two teams play that I didn't necessarily care about. The game of hockey is an extremely passionate sport for players, coaches, and even fans. There is nothing like being able to surround yourself with people who share love for the same team and celebrate with people around you after your home team scores a goal. In this instance, I cheered, but I felt a sense of emptiness inside. I felt out of place not cheering for the Pens and instead cheering for two teams that I have never had experience cheering for before. Out of the two teams playing, I guess I went with the majority of people and cheered for the home team. Even though the Blackhawks were very well represented. There's always talk about "bandwagon" fans and to be honest, I didn't want to be "That guy."
As the night went on, i started to have a lot more fun and realized that I could just enjoy the game of hockey. I talked to fans sitting around me and just talked about the game. I'd be lying if I didn't mention to them that I was a Penguins fan and boasted about what a great team we have this season. On this particular night, the Blackhawks ended up storming back to beat Columbus on a final second goal that left the home crowd stunned and disappointed. While I was sent home having thanked the hockey gods that not only did I have a good time watching a well played hockey game by two great teams, but for the fact that after briefly questioning myself, I still understand where my loyalties lie. As my hometown team now plays the Blue Jackets in the NHL playoffs, I have more of a respect for them as a hockey team. This should make for a much more interesting playoff series