It has been less than a week since the sudden end to the Red Wings' run to repeat as Stanley Cup Champions. Many Wings fans are still in a little bit of shock. Some are in denial. Some are already looking ahead to next year.
For the second time in three years, Detroit is the victim of a first-round upset. While many of us woke up Thursday morning in mourning, I think most of have come to terms with the fact that the Red Wings' early playoff demise is not a death. There will be a next year for Detroit.
And maybe by looking ahead to next year or looking back to 2002, we can find a way to laugh about what happened this season.
Within hours of the Red Wings' Game Four loss to Anaheim, a doctored photo featuring former Iraqi Information Minister Mohammad Saeed al-Sahaf, now famous for declaring that U.S.-led coalition forces were not in Iraq when they were in actuality already on the outskirts of Baghdad, standing in front of Joe Louis Arena appeared on several hockey-themed Internet message boards.
In the photo, the Information Minister is dressed in Red Wings garb and declares, "There was no sweep. The Detroit Red Wings defeated the infidels from Anaheim swiftly and mercilessly. The defense of Curtis Joseph is inpregnable. The Stanley Cup will soon be ours."
It's just a game, the Red Wings will be back next year. Fans will deal with this season's shocking end how they wish, but by now, we should all be able to laugh at that photo.