For starters, in preparation for tonight’s tilt between the San Jose Sharks and the Nashville Predators, I thought a vintage Predator beat down video might be in order. Please enjoy as everybody’s favorite Newfoundlander, Ryane Clowe, whets the appetite for this evening by punishing Jordin Tootoo for insolence.
The Preds come in winners of only two of their last eight games, but even at that clip remain just two points out of the Western Conference playoff race. After losing a tight one to Calgary last Sunday night, Nashville will be trying to snag a victory before heading back to the Music City.
Despite being so close to the postseason invite, the Preds still seem to be lacking a spark, the catalyst usually delivered by Jordin Tootoo right before whatever guy he is trying to punch actually turns around to face him.
I mean, that’s certainly one way of doing it but how about a little critical thinking?
In the spirit of a better NHL and Western Conference, I offer the following suggestion to help stoke the furnace of the Predators’ much needed late season push and get them into the playoffs.
Hire the Tennessee Volunteers Marching Band.
Nothing gets the blood going like the 500+ renditions of “Rocky Top” during Vols’ games, and not going so far as to say this idea is full proof or anything, but it might be something for the Preds to consider.
Perched in the stands, the Band could play incessantly all game long and at high volume until you have driven your opponents literally crazy, and where every “Woo!” by the crowd is met with grimaces and twitching faces from the visiting team.
This is college football country…embrace it and turn Predators games into an S-E-C extravaganza.
During home intros, they could strip out all the lights, ear splitting music, glitz, flashy pre-game video, and instead, just roll out the Band lead by “Smokey” the hound dog. The First Star every night would get to lead the band in “Rocky Top” using an autographed souvenir stick that he would then pass over the glass to a young adoring toddler. You could have entire “Vol Orange Out” nights where one half of your rink is packed with students you let in for free. You could have cheerleaders on skates during intermissions and cookouts on unbelievably equipped barbecues tailgating in the parking lot.
Sure, there would be a few arrests every game and the crowd would chant “S-E-C” after literally every Preds’ faceoff win but your building would be rocking!
At the very least, it’s almost guaranteed your players would get a massive confidence boost as ESPN would immediately rank the Nashville Predators 50% higher in their Power Rankings based solely on a loose affiliation with the Southeastern Conference. Every Preds’ player would now immediately become the greatest player at his chosen position in the history of ice hockey and you’d have the luxury of explaining away every team or individual failure by simply combining the words: strength, of and schedule a.k.a. the celebrated “SEC Logic Method.”
SEC Logic Example:
Q: Why did Patric Hornqvist just fan on that one-timer?
A: Strength of schedule man. Strength. Of. Schedule. S-E-C!
People would travel up Interstate 40 to catch the Prols, and for those who care, I’m doubtful any one at Vanderbilt would even notice or care, excepting that they’d have to contend with fleets of Vol Winnebagos parked on campus which I happen to know they dislike
Just a thought, but short of that there’s always just having Jordin Tootoo suckerpunch Clowey in the back of the head a few times, and then rallying the Preds by using the sight of his ragdolled body and fist-catching mug to get into gear.
My way sounds more festive.