HBO, the media outlet that’s cost us our season, begins airing tonight its malevolently intrusive documentary series ’24/7 Penguins/Capitals: The Road to the NHL Winter Classic.’ The first of the four-part hit-job on our standings standing airs at 10:00 Eastern, and as with most HBO original productions, there will be replays of it this week. The Capitals have paid a high price for their participation in this project, obviously, but tonight for an hour at least — and hopefully immediately after a win over Anaheim — we can distract ourselves a bit from holiday tasks and howling winter winds and blanket up in front of the TV and immerse ourselves in HBO’s first in-depth foray into our frozen world. It ought to be special, and we ought not lose sight of the fact that the Capitals represent at least half of the allure for this project. (The Flyers you’ll recall skated in last year’s Winter Classic and no one from HBO gave a damn.) (Speaking of the Flyers, they ended Pittsburgh’s 12-game win streak last night. We hope it feels extra cold in Steel City this morning.)
This ’24/7′ preview clip of Brooks Laich is highly suggestive that we’ll be afforded some terrific reflections and perspectives in this series. Here Brooksie makes the claim that hockey is the best game in the world, and the athletes who play it are the world’s best athletes. We agree on both counts.