They’re calling it H-day. The H might stand for ‘hockey’ or ‘hell,’ you don’t really remember. You only remember the day you turned on your local sports network to hear that every player in the NHL has been transformed based on the names of their teams. The ramifications of this range from merely nominal to, frankly, off the walls ridiculous.
Montreal and Vancouver, out of all the NHL cities, have seen the least effects. Their team names mean ‘Canadians, except in French’ and ‘Canadians, except in slang,’ respectively, so aside from a few sudden citizenship acquisitions, their players have experienced no changes. Likewise, the Islanders are essentially the same. Some extent of memory alteration is speculated, but that’s all Deadspin anyway, so who really knows?
The other New York team, on the other hand, has developed a strange predilection for reckless behaviour in the name of ‘adventure.’ They’ve also taken to rolling twenty sided dice before taking action, which tends to really slow down a hockey game.
Los Angeles and Las Vegas have come to an unlikely alliance. The LA team had devolved into power struggles and succession crises, so Vegas offered proxy fighters to joust on each LA player’s behalf. However, with many Kings and only one Knight, the teams have been forced to wait until the expansion draft to actually settle the disputes. Until then, the main concern is keeping the Kings away from the armoury that has sprung up in Buffalo, as most hockey fans agree that beheadings would be taking hockey fights too far.
When the Detroit players sprouted wings — literal red wings — many expected the same from Philadelphia. However, the Flyers have become a different type of flyer, and their management is currently scrambling to find all their players, floating around the city on the wind (Toronto, too, is having similar issues; they simply didn’t have enough rakes in the equipment room when the whole debacle began). Of particular importance is one flyer advertising grilled cheese sandwiches, which must never, under any circumstances, be allowed to find its way to Pittsburgh. It might cross the path of a passing flightless bird, who could mistake it for food, or worse, recognize it as who it actually is.
Speaking of Pittsburgh, they, along with Anaheim, are reaping the benefits of being one of the few animal-named teams whose mascot is relatively docile and non-threatening. Arizona, Florida, Boston, San Jose, and Nashville have all had to call in experts in the zoology business to deal with the sudden influx of apex predators.
Speaking of predators, Chicago is gone. Just gone. They had the misfortune to have a home stretch lined up where they played Carolina, Colorado, and Tampa in succession, and now they’re gone. Instead, the city has been replaced by a replica of Washington DC that inexplicably speaks Russian instead of English, but is otherwise indistinguishable. Twenty other versions of Washington have cropped up over the country, most of which are Russian-speaking.
The St. Louis music scene and the Columbus fashion industry have each had a sudden boom, revitalized by new trends. They don’t have much to do with each other, but the two cities agree: blue sure is a cool colour.
The province of Alberta, on other hand, is not in such agreement. For their own safety, Edmonton and Calgary are attempting to keep as separate as possible for the time being. What is left of their players cannot be allowed to interact, lest they ignite the entire country.
New Jersey is also having some problems. Then again, when are they not?
The Minnesota practice rink is no longer fit for use; it has become, essentially, a very cold forest. It now attracts hockey fans and tourists, many of whom claim to be able to hear the voices of the players among the trees. Others merely say it seems like a nice way to get back to nature.
But when it comes to getting back to nature, Dallas has us all beat. They have returned to a state of matter pre-dating our own planet and ascended into the night sky. Attempts are being made to bring them back to Earth, as it is not possible to play hockey games against them if they are in outer space — only Winnipeg might have even a chance. Unfortunately, the mission to bring the Stars back has hit a snag lately; Jamie Benn just won’t go down.