DETROIT - MAY 27: Henrik Zetterberg #40 (R) of the Detroit Red Wings receives the Clarence S. Campbell Bowl from NHL Senior Vice President of Hockey Operations Jim Gregory after the Red Wings won 2-1 in overtime (ed: we should add Darren Helm scored the winner 3:58 into the OT, his first-ever OT playoff goal ) against the Chicago Blackhawks during Game Five of the Western Conference Championship Round of the 2009 Stanley Cup Playoffs on May 27, 2009 at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Michigan.
We’ll get to what we’re on about in the post title in just a moment. But first… there was a hockey game in
Wednesday night. See the image above for the basics; the oh-so-brief photo caption provides some detail. More and better detail may be found here. (photo from the Bleacher Report). Detroit
Now… about this “It’s Ordained” thing. The Wings WILL win The Stanley Cup. Why? Because of this:
Bucking years of superstitious belief,
For years, such behavior around the trophy awarded to the Eastern Conference playoff champion was considered taboo. The thinking went something like this: Why celebrate with the conference championship trophy when there is a bigger trophy still up for grabs. The superstitious lot actually believed it was bad luck -- and poor form -- to be caught touching said trophy, and more than one captain in the past decade has gone to great lengths to limit exposure.
The Hockey Gods do not look kindly upon apostates; heresy is NOT allowed in this church**. The Faithful will note Henrik Zetterberg did NOT touch the Clarence S. Campbell Bowl during the presentation of same for winning the West this year. Ergo, The Cup will follow in due course. It's ordained.
. You never should have done that. Sidney
**OTOH, maybe Sid the Kid is only trying to emulate a worthy example. I'll quote The Wiki (all links left intact and the bold emphasis is mine):
Another tradition (or rather superstition) which is prevalent among today's NHL players is that no player should touch the Cup itself until his team has rightfully won the Cup. Adding to this superstition is some players' choice to neither touch nor hoist the conference trophies (Clarence S. Campbell Bowl and Prince of Wales Trophy) when these series have been won; the players feel that the Stanley Cup is the true championship trophy, and only it should be hoisted. However, in 1994, Stephane Matteau, then of the New York Rangers, admitted that he tapped the Wales Trophy with his stick's blade before the overtime period in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals. Matteau subsequently scored the game-winning goal in double overtime against the New Jersey Devils, and the Rangers won the Stanley Cup. Scott Stevens hoisted the trophy as well in 2000, after the New Jersey Devils came back from a 3-1 series deficit to defeat the Philadelphia Flyers in seven games. In 2002 the Carolina Hurricanes hoisted the Prince of Wales Trophy after they won their conference title; the Hurricanes lost their Finals series with the Detroit Red Wings four games to one. The superstition held true in 2004, as Jarome Iginla of the Calgary Flames grabbed the Campbell Bowl, but Dave Andreychuk of the Tampa Bay Lightning refused to touch the Prince of Wales Trophy; the Lightning won the Stanley Cup in seven games. In 2007, Daniel Alfredsson and Wade Redden of the Ottawa Senators touched and picked up the Prince of Wales Trophy, respectively, but Anaheim Ducks captain Scott Niedermayer never came close to the Campbell Bowl; the Ducks won the Stanley Cup in five games. Steve Yzerman, captain of the Detroit Red Wings during their 1997, 1998, and 2002 Stanley Cup victories, picked up the Clarence S. Campbell Bowl each time, though his successor Nicklas Lidstrom did not touch it en route to a 2008 Stanley Cup victory.
So... in spite of mixed evidence, I still think the Gods were offended. As far as '97, '98, and '02 go...there's no doubt in my mind Stevie Y got some sort of dispensation. Sidney hasn't yet achieved that sort of status.