Over the last few years, I have been fortunate to work with the NHL providing voiceover or narration on a few projects. Some short form stuff like promos and a few long form like the Stanley Cup Championship DVDs that are wrapped up at the end of the season.
Today, Road to Victory: The 1994 New York Rangers has been released.
Obviously, I’m a Blues fan. They’re my team. But any sports fan – even if you’re one who despises the winner – can recognize when the story is really good. I don’t care who is celebrated – getting to be a part of telling the story is really one of the coolest things I’ve ever been allowed to do. And this one is really good.
It’s not politics. It’s passion.
This is the story about the end of a curse. Though no one is really sure which one.
About 1939, it is thought that the owners of Madison Square Garden desecrated the Cup by burning the mortgage on the building inside the trophy to celebrate paying off the debt. Fans think the “hockey gods” placed a curse on the Rangers.
Another popular theory of superstition is Dutton’s Curse which is some convoluted story about a dissed former manager.
I tend to think it’s neither of those. Maybe there is a third curse.
If you don’t know, what happens after the Stanley Cup Finals is that each player on the winning team gets to take The Cup for day or two. They take it wherever they want and do pretty much whatever they want with it. Usually it involves taking The Cup someplace important to them like to the town where the player grew up or eating or drinking from it.
Well, if there really was a curse this might be the one: The Rangers won The Stanley Cup in 1940. That year, Lynn Patrick (who ultimately become the very first GM and Coach of the St. Louis Blues in 1967) and his teammates made the Stanley Cup their toilet. Huh? Yeah! They pissed in it!! Do you think that might be it?
I don’t know if it was a curse – I don’t even know if it really happened – but whatever it was, it ended in 1994.
Superstition is not in me, but I get how sports fans get caught up in that because it is the legend and it makes the story fun to hear. And when that “curse” lasts for 54 years and drags every Rangers fan along for the ride waiting for it to end, it’s easy to understand how stories like this need to be told almost 20 years later. It makes me wish I was there.
If you love hockey stories, I hope you get to see this one.
BONUS! Check out the 1994 New York Rangers doing The Top 10 on Letterman: