Game Summary: #BellLetsTalk about the Sens and Jackets
by Bonk's Mullet
Hey folks! The Sens took on the Jackets (the blue ones) on Tuesday night, but I thought I'd start with a blurb about #BellLetsTalk. I know this is a blog for jokes, but let me remind you that an essential part of any mullet is the business in the front. I already made this rant on Twitter, so if you want to skip to the jokes, they're down there somewhere!
The goal of the initiative is to end the stigma surrounding mental health issues. Here are some facts about depression. What struck me is that even though most people suffer from depression in their lives at some point, most stories come in the form of celebrity success stories. Take a look at this Wikipedia article of famous people who've suffered from depression. That's pretty much all the celebrities I know.
Although it's nice to hear these "it can happen to anyone, even extremely successful people" stories, if you're anything like me, it's extremely difficult to relate to people of this stature. It's difficult to say "I can be just like them and get through this" when they seem above personhood to begin with. You might say to yourself, "I'm not strong enough to win a gold medal or an Oscar, so how can I get through this depression?" When you feel worthless to begin with, it's not encouraging to compare yourself to a famous athlete, musician, or actor.
Days like today are extremely important. It's nice to hear stories from average joes, with equally boring stories to your own, talk about their struggles. At times, it's more encouraging to hear about someone who had nothing and managed to turn it into something. My point is not to diminish the efforts of those trying to bring the issues into the spotlight, but to make sure we turn our attention to those at every point on the "coolness" spectrum. Everybody needs someone to relate to, and there's always someone out there who's gone through what you have. Speak up and you might inspire someone you know to do so as well.
The other tricky point is that some of us, including myself, don't feel like they can describe what they are going through as "depression." You hear stories of suicide attempts or emotional paralysis, and you think to yourself that you've never felt that low, so you're probably okay. But the reality is that there's no binary; there's no black and white. Whatever your feelings are, let them be known to someone. These things pile up quickly and it's best to wade through the shit together. Don't feel like you have to suck it up because there's someone worse off than you. We all need help sometimes. Some people might need help from a doctor, but most of us probably just need to talk to a friend.
I strongly recommend these two   Hyperbole and a Half comics that attempt to explain the author's bout with depression.
Anyway, let's keep the dialogue open, let's be a little nicer to one another, and remember to listen.
Now that I've got the crowd warmed up... Jokes!
- Despite the practice lineup of Greening and Michalek on Spezza's wings, Paul MacLean pulls a rabbit out of his mustache and starts Zibanejad in Greening's place. This is good.
- After a dominant first seven minutes by Ottawa, Matt Calvert is called for holding Marc Methot. Back in Ottawa, thousands of swooning men and women wish they too could hold Marc Methot.
- Right at the end of the power play, Stephane Da Giant Human Baby Costa scores on the Backhand Slapshot patented by the French military some time in the early 1940's. His teammates pinch his cheeks in celebration. 1-0 Sens
- With three minutes to go in the period, Neil and Gryba elect to hit the same player. Marc Methot is forced into taking a penalty on the ensuing 2-on-1, giving Neil and Gryba a full two minutes to work on their joint apology letter from the bench.
- In the spirit of #BellLetsTalk, Eric Gryba takes a hooking penalty on Nick Foligno so that Marc Methot doesn't have to be alone in the box. Now that's supporting a friend!
- To start the second, the Sens kill the remainder of the Eric Gryba penalty like they're Eric Gryba killing the remainder of Ontario's wildlife.
- Minutes later, Patrick Weirdcock gets double teamed but manages to ease the tension with his shaft. There's gotta be a better way to say that.
- Jason Spezza sets up Da Costa in front who one-times the puck past Columbus's backup goaltender Curtis McBackup. That can't be right. You could say that Stephane Da Costa finally hit puberty tonight by growing a pair. Of goals. A pair of goals. Who writes these jokes? 2-0 Sens
- Jason Spezza realizes that the middle of the play isn't the best time for a "welcome back" hug with Nick Foligno and gets called for holding.
- On the penalty kill, Karlsson creeps up high into the slot, leaving Matt Calvert alone in front. Calvert gathers the rebound on a point shot and makes a nice through the legs pass to Cam Atkinson, who narrows the gap to 2-1 Sens. The use of the #BellLetsTalk hashtag skyrockets in Ottawa.
- During another uninspired Sens power play, Chris Neil lures Jack Johnson into double teaming a pair of minors. Again, there's gotta be a better way to say that.
- On the same power play, Karlsson winds up for a huge clapper from the slot, only to see it saved by Curtis McElBigDaddy.
- At the end of the period, Nikita "Nickito" Nikitin and Mika Zibanejad go hard into the corner together. One of Zibanejad's feet is pried out from under him while the other gets caught in a rut, causing him to fly face first into the boards. The refs call Nikitin for tripping and Zibanejad for embellishment. All Sens fans in attendance make a certain hand motion that may embellish the size of a certain male appendage.
- This happens in the intermission and it's hilarious:
|Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!|
- Zack Smith rips a shot alone in front only to see his shot snatched by the glove hand of Curtis McPuffDaddy.
- Anderson stops Nathan Horton on a wraparound. Why do people still try wraparounds?
- Speaking of wraparounds, Chris Neil is tripped and makes this face:
|Paul MacLean diagnosed the injury as a "grade 2 bobo"|
- After Zack Smith goes off to the box, James Wisniewski scores on a clapper through a Calvert screen to tie the game up at 2-2. I reenact the Chris Neil face.
- All sadness in Ottawa is cured at once as Mark Methot delivers whatever the hell this is on Nick Foligno:
|Bryan Murray hopes to do the same on Tim in the next Sens-Sabres game|
- Horton trips Karlsson, sending the Sens back to the power play. After a scrum ensues in front, Jason Spezza exploits Curtis McAintSavinAny's famous weakness of point blank rebounds at the top of the crease, restoring Ottawa's one goal lead. 3-2 Sens
- I do cartwheels around my apartment like Foligno in the above GIF.
- If I were to tell you that with a minute left in the game, with Columbus's net empty, one team dominated possession for 45 seconds, recording 3 or 4 solid scoring chances but inevitably fell short, you'd probably suspect it was Columbus doing all the missing. But no, it was Bobby Ryan and Kyle Turris trading misses on the empty net.
- It all culminated in one beautiful moment when none other than Jared Cowen was left all alone in the slot for a wrister at the empty net. I watched, at the edge of my seat, as the moment unfolded in what seemed like slow motion. I don't want to call it a train wreck, but it went something like this:
|DAY BOW BOW. OOOOoOOoooH YEAH. DAY BOW BOW. BEAUTIFUL.|
- I know right? Not pretty at all. Cowen hit the cross bar and totally blew it. But the Sens won. So that's cool.
It seems like I say this after every game, but this wasn't pretty. Safe for a few exciting moments, this game was another snoozer. Luckily, Ottawa dominated possession and limited Columbus's scoring chances.
Last I checked, over 100,000,000 communications were sent with #BellLetsTalk or via texts on the Bell Network, meaning over $5 million is going to be donated to mental health initiatives. Great job everyone.
Feel free to share your story in the comments, or at the very least, leave some supportive words for Jared Cowen.