Historically, the greatest rival of the Toronto Maple Leafs has been the Montreal Canadiens. My dislike of the Habs, however, pales in comparison to my absolute hatred of the Ottawa Senators.
I don't just hate the Sens, I despise them. I understand that those in glass houses shouldn't throw stones, but I'm loving this collapse by the team voted most likely to win the cup back in October. Damn, they came out of the gate like gangbusters and for a while we were wondering if they'd set a new standard for regular season excellence. Then, it all went to shit and they couldn't stop the slide. It was awesome.
I'm actually glad the Leafs didn't take out the Sens on April 3rd because it allowed this to happen. We Leaf fans, without a team to root for, collectively embraced ABO and witnessed a glorious four game sweep at the hands of the young and exciting Pittsburgh Penguins. Next to a series win by the Leafs, this is the best hockey news possible.
It's a fantastic feeling, but it makes me nostalgic for the days we used to knock the Sens out of the playoffs. It seems like yesterday I wrote this entry after we ousted the Senators in 7 back in 2004. We met the Sens in the playoffs 4 times in 5 years and took 'em out every single damn time. Sweet, sweet memories...