One Leafs win - funny how a 60 minute effort will produce those - isn't enough to lower the panic level among the mittenstringers from LeafCon 1. Frankly, the Leafs are a long way from stopping those stories (more on this later) and allaying the fears of Leafs RAUP. In the interim, here's something that'll hopefully cheer us up (until Tavares pots a hat-trick tonight): stories of meeting players. I'll kick it off with three and then share your own in the comments.
Charity Pays Off
In 2003 some law firms downtown held a fundraising brunch where you could meet Mats Sundin and Doug Gilmour. Luckily, my aunt worked for one of them and my dad and I were off to the Centre of the Universe to have a ridiculously overpriced meal at the Richtree Marche. Now, of course, I can't find the pictures but I laughed when I saw them. I stood between Doug Gilmour and my dad and with a jersey it might have looked like Draft Day in the PPP household (about 30 lbs in the past) as I towered over both. Then Mats took up residence between the two of us and he looks like a monster. He was nice enough, didn't get my dad's joke about getting a picture with a future Stanley Cup winner, and we're both kind of leaning out as if fearful of angering the giant.
When Closing Down the Bar Pays Off
Fast forward three months and two friends and I are sharing out final night out in Kingston before heading out for exchange at the Peel Pub in Kingston. Rather than clear out at a reasonable hour we shut the bar down and were much worse for the wear of 4+ hours of sitting and drinking in a rather rote fashion. As the lights are coming on who should stumble in (and I do mean stumble) but good ol' Kingston boys Doug Gilmour and Kirk Muller! Needless to say we had some pops, a couple of good pictures (including one of Killer putting our buddy, a Canucks fan, in a headlock), and a slurred attempt to explain that I had met him three months prior.
Post-Bar Food Pays Off
Which brings me to last weekend. After a charity dinner and a few adult beverages at a friend's going away party my buddy and I headed down to Queen's Quay's Pizza Pizza for a slice. Little did we know that Luke Schenn would walk in post-loss to get a couple of slices of pizza (Double-bacon cheeseburger - like me - and a pep and cheese in case you were wondering). Of course, while I had my Movember-participating friend along Schenn had a considerably better looking companion of the cookie cutter blonde variety right down to the attitude and the ripped jeans. The funny thing was, and I attribute this to it being Canada, was that despite everyone knowing who it was no on bothered Luke. On the bright side, even though the server was going to serve him before us he graciously acknowledged that we were there first.
So there you go, nothing too exciting but something at least positive. Three good encounters with Maple Leafs players something, unfortunately, that far too many opponents have shared this year. So now let's hear yours!