Dear 2009-2010 Detroit Red Wings,
First, I can't tell you how happy I am that we are going to the playoffs for the 19th straight year!
What an accomplishment. You have my sincere congratulations for all you've accomplished so far.
I am now looking forward to banging the "ra-ra" drum, talking trash to the fans of our opposition and using this space as a bullhorn for unbridled Red Wings fanaticism.
But, before I do, I must come clean and formerly, publicly apologize to you, Red Wings.
Honestly, I really didn't think this would happen. I thought you were done.
With all the injuries, the poor play and bad luck officiating, I thought there was just no way we'd be able to get back to postseason hockey this year.
As early as December, I was inviting other Red Wings fans to give up on the season ; apparently my misery needed some company.
Now, I'll stand by the evidence I used to support my position, but, I realize now I was selling you very short and doing so much too early.
I kept on turning out my nay-saying, doom and gloom drivel even after we started to get healthy.
"Mule" coming back was a good thing, but I didn't think it would be enough for us to get into the postseason .
As it turns out, everything started to fall into place when Franzen came back, and even though I had hoped this would happen, I didn't give you guys enough credit to actually make this into a reality.
This isn't even the worst of it.
I was doing my Chicken Little thing as late as March—March!
How could I be so stupid?
I've seen you overcome huge odds in the playoffs, when it matters most, how could I believe you couldn't do it in the regular season?
Through all of this, I always asserted that I wasn't giving up on you, the team, but merely the hope of making the playoffs.
You have to know that you will always be first in my heart. I'd never leave you. I love you, Red Wings.
But, I realize now that love isn't just about emotion. It's about trust, it's about faith and it's about supporting someone when they need it most.
We've been together for so long, and have had so many good times, I guess I just didn't know how to handle a rough patch in our relationship.
But, I've changed. Believe me. I'm a different fan now.
If we go through another rough season next year, I promise, I won't write that stuff again. You've proved to me that you're able to pull through tough times, I'll make sure to prove it to you if I have to.
Like I said, I'm ready to believe in you 100 percent. I'm going to be your biggest supporter, no matter what happens.
I just felt that, given all the times I've doubted you, I should at least acknowledge that I was wrong rather than acting like I believed in you the whole time.
I mean, even a fake journalist should try to maintain his integrity once in a while.
I love you Red Wings, and I always will. I'll never doubt you again.
One Relieved Fan