Adopt-a-team for the NHL Playoffs (Western Teams)

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Image: Dallas Stars / Facebook

Yesterday we went over the options for what Eastern teams you might want to adopt for a playoff run, now that Vancouver’s season is officially over.

Image: Florida Panthers

SEE ALSO: Adopt-a-team for the NHL Playoffs (Eastern Teams)

But what about a team from the West? I know it’s harder to select a team that faces off regularly against the beloved home team Canucks, but maybe there’s a player or a storyline you can get behind that will make you put petty rivalries aside?

Without further ado, here is the pros and cons for adopting a playoff team from the West.

Dallas Stars

Pros:

  • Their mascot is a green alien with hockey sticks for antennas. His name sounds like “victory”. He can bust out a seductive pose at any moment. This, ladies and gentlemen, this is a mascot. Unlike a certain whale who insists on banging a drum and standing in your way during play and can’t even do a proper whale mating call.
  • Their goalies may be involved in a blood feud:

A) Why bring up a tire slashing story. B) Why clarify it wasn’t you? With the playoffs the pressure only gets higher so I want to see how high this feud escalates. “Yeah someone sent a hit-man after Niemi. I don’t know who did that but it was not me.”

  • Johhny Oduya is allowed to use a t-shirt cannon and he takes it very seriously. Look at him line up his shot, aiming down the sights. That’s the kind of guy you can support during the playoffs!

Cons:

  • They’re an organization of cheaters. BRETT HULL’S FOOT WAS IN THE CREASE.
  • They’re an organization of liars. THEY USED TO BE THE MINNESOTA NORTH STARS.
  • They’re an organization of vanity. THEY CHOSE VICTORY GREEN AS THEIR TEAM COLOUR.

Minnesota Wild

Pros:

  • They have some lakes?
  • They have four syllables in Minnesota? That’s neat.
  • Nobody likes the Wild. I’m sorry, let’s just own up to what we’re dealing with here.

Cons:

  • If they win, we’d have to admit they are a real hockey team.
  • This is Nordy, the Wild mascot. He is garbage. They couldn’t even come up with what animal he was, there are just rumours that he might be a bear/fox hybrid. He also has a green M branded on his forehead. This seems cruel, even for a team that subjected people to watching it play “hockey” in 2003.

The team is called the Wild, they should have a deeper knowledge of animals, damn it.

  • Speaking of their name, they’re called the “Wild”. Do they party too much? Do they own a wildlife sanctuary? How can we trust them, really? Answer: We can’t.

St. Louis Blues

Pros:

  • Chicago fans irrationally hate St. Louis (seriously, it’s like the Capulets vs Montagues with them) so it would be fun to see them beat Chicago.
  • The Gateway Arch in St. Louis got 4.4 stars out of 5 on Google Reviews. That’s gotta be worth something. Unless you’re this guy:whatI don’t….but….what…..huh?
  • They are the oldest NHL team to have never won a Cup. If they can win a Cup, that means there is hope for Vancouver, right? RIGHT??

Cons:

  • Abraham Lincoln might have had a Gatling gun arm.abeI didn’t want to believe it either, but here we are.
  • They’ve been employing the fake Bertuzzi, “Bortuzzo”, for years and it has to stop.
  • Their mascots origin story upsets me. The greatest night of his life was playing “When the Blues go marching in” on a saxophone? Aim hire Louie. Aim higher.

Chicago Blackhawks

Pros:

  • I won’t lie, there is a good chance they’ll win the Cup, so you’ll get to experience that odd moment of seeing a team you supported during the playoffs win it all. I know, I know, it kind of freaks me out too.
  • Most of their fanbase appeared in 2009, so you don’t have to worry about wearing an old school jersey to fit in. You can even help them out by explaining who Denis Savard is.
  • After a season of Canucks hockey you’d get to experience the thrill of long forgotten past times such as “scoring goals” and “exciting hockey”.

Cons:

  • You’d be cheering for the Blackhawks, and there is no way to wash that stench off of you. That stays with you for life.
  • You’d have to mentally prepare yourself for listening to Chelsea Dagger repeatedly.
  • It’s very possible Duncan Keith might elbow you in the face at some point in your life.

Anaheim Ducks

Pros:

  • Kevin Bieksa lifting the Cup would be pretty nice to see. Not many people bled Canuck milk hotdogs like ol’ Kevin.
  • There’s always the chance the team celebrates a Cup win by diving into a tower full of gold a la Scrooge McDuck?
  • Disneyland might make a ride to celebrate the Cup win. They’ll call it “The Kesler” and halfway through it, you can demand to be let off and go on another ride.

Cons:

  • Their refusal to embrace their “Mighty” past is cowardly, and quite frankly, insulting.
  • Ryan. Kesler.
  • See above.

Nashville Predators

Pros:

  • Shea Weber. This is a man who once slammed Zetterberg’s head into the boards like he was wrestling on a PPV. There’s no telling what he’ll do next if it’s in the Finals and the Cup is on the line.
  • Local boy Ryan Johansen would sure like your support. He had a tough year having to deal with Torts as a coach, he could use the positive reinforcement.
  • Shea Weber. Did we do that one already? Whatever, you can never go wrong doubling down on Shea Weber.

Cons:

  • You’d have to deal with calling them “Smashville” and pretend to enjoy it with other Nashville fans. The trick is to swallow the urge to vomit while still smiling when saying “Smashville”.
  • The team will most likely attempt to murder your ears with endless hours of hockey highlight packages set to country music.
  • You might have to witness Kesler return to “Beast Mode” form as he terrorizes the Predators and crushes their dreams once again. It was sweet when he was on Vancouver and did this, but now that he’s on the Ducks, it’s just disheartening.

LA Kings

Pros:

  • You have to respect a team willing to stick to its guns and go with a monarchy and refuse to allow elections.
  • If you’re like, super into supporting North America, this is your team. Only three non North Americans exist on this team, one of which is the backup goalie, so that doesn’t even count.
  • They recently signed some muscle to help them with their playoff run:

  • Jericho has strong hockey blood lines, so that’s a solid signing, but Ziggler and Flair will take one body check and they’ll be flopping their way down the ice. Still, Y2J potentially locking on the Walls of Jericho onto Logan Couture is reason enough for me to support them.

Cons:

  • Watching Dustin Brown win anything is the sort of thing that can set you back months in therapy.
  • Drew Doughty debates between mainstream media and stats guys would reach peak levels of wanting to smother yourself. Now add in “Is Jonathan Quick elite?” debates on top of that? This is what we call hell. Pure, unadulterated hell. We’re at the point where 99% of the population doesn’t care if Quick is elite or not, but it would still be heavily debated in some corners of the hockey world as if planet earth’s very existence was at stake.
  • Wil Wheaton might be the most annoying celebrity fan of any team. Imagine the worst of an online sports forum, then times it by a hundred, and add in more exclamation marks. Now you’re getting close to what it’s like listening to Wheaton talk about hockey.

San Jose Sharks

Pros:

  • Joe Thornton and Brent Burns’ beards are one thing, but imagine their playoff chest hair after a couple of months? You owe it yourself to cheer this on.
  • If Joe Thornton thinks four goals is reason enough to whip out his junk, one can only imagine the three hour burlesque show he has planned for a Stanley Cup victory.
  • This is the goalie they just signed:

  • He is a goalie AND a model. If you’ve been waiting patiently for someone to step up to the plate to challenge Henrik Lundqvist to a walk off, your time is now.

Cons:

  • They’ve been the Canucks spirit animal in losing important games over the last 10-15 years, so out of pure spite we can’t have them win.
  • All of the California based teams will have won a Cup, which come on guys. Not cool. Not cool.
  • Sharks can’t even play hockey.

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Wyatt Arndt Wyatt Arndt is a freelance writer who currently writes for The Province, Canucks Army, Canucks.com and Vancity Buzz. He's probably written in bathroom stalls near you as well. You can find him on Twitter where he is most likely making fun of Eddie Lack's goalie mask.
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