Another victory for our boys

Game nights at the Sportsplex are akin to the kinetic energy built up before an AC/DC concert; the nervous excitement is palpable, and the parking lot is a mob of beer shot-gunning, roach-clip passing maniacs high on the anticipation of the tremendous event that is to occur.

My season’s pass allows me to forego the scrum of scalpers hawking tickets for 50 times their value, and my box seats, conveniently situated right beside the Powerade jug, allow me ample opportunity to commend, or chastise, the young warriors that you laypeople call the Capilano Blues Men’s Basketball team

And chastise I did, when Mac Fairbairn sauntered over to fuel up on delicious Powerade during the warm-up of Wednesday’s final Blues home game against the 5-5 Quest Kermodes.

“Fairbairn! Fairbairn!” I cried, “What the hell happened last week against Douglas?’  My need to know how they had blown an easy loss overcame my discretion. “You had that game wrapped up tighter than a bull’s ass in a wind storm!” Well, as fate would have it, before he could reply, he was overcome by a gaggle of pre-teen girls demanding a photo op.

So I decided to get my answers from the big cheese, head coach Jordan Yu. “Well, Mike,” he said, “ The offense did fall apart. Defensively we were great, we held them to 64 points. We got off to a great start, and sometimes with a big lead some players start to think more for themselves, and that was one of our big problems, and it has been a big problem all season.”

Some players start to think for themselves, eh? Well, I knew better. Athletes don’t think, they act! And that is exactly what I came to see, action. Not a bunch of twinkle-toed pencil-necks “thinking” about winning. I wanted to see the opposing team crying on the bench, disconsolate, defeated, and despairing from the relentless onslaught I call “The Blues”.

Well, I grabbed my dollar coke (deal!) and I took my seat (by the Powerade!) as the starting lineups took to the floor. The tension was thicker than an Alabama waistline at the tip off, but Big Sinclair Brown made “short” work of it, gaining possession for our Blues.

“Steady” Eddie Fan was testing Quest’s defense when an early turn-over occurred, and Quest managed to procure the first basket of the game.

My rallying cry of “come on, you good-for-nothing bums!” seemed to galvanize the Blues, and as Connor Lewis received the in-bound pass he simply nodded to me, with an unspoken “This one’s for you.”

Well it seems my commentary lit the fuse on this North Vancouver powderkeg, because the five demolition experts on the court blew the fuck up. It was a routing – the offense was unstoppable.

Now, if this team could play every quarter like they played this first, they would be 12-0. It was simply amazing basketball. The starters were perfect, and when players came off the bench it was if they were determined to be better than the starters.

Connor Mahannah and Glen Gravengard, in particular, had something to prove, the former dropping threes like hookups after a night at Seymour’s, and the latter all up in the grill of Quest’s offense, straight up intimidation style.

Quest is a respectable team, (considering they are from Squamish) but they were slack-jawed and weak-kneed in the face of the Capilano squad’s ridiculous offensive talent. The excitement was contagious. When Fairbairn made a great steal and ran it end to end for a huge dunk, the bench was on their feet; when he did it a second time, with a simply ridonkulous dunk, the whole place got up.

And that was just the first quarter. I actually had to go change my drawers before the 2nd, but it proved to be just as exciting, if perhaps a bit more “disciplined.” Vick Jassal was shooting the lights out, with three threes in a row, and Brown, the big man at centre, was stuffing dudes like they were envelopes and he worked for Canada Post.

Thankfully the half-time break gave me a chance to recuperate, and to hear Single Ladies by BeyoncĂ© seven times in a row, courtesy of a terrible IPod shuffle selection on the gym speakers. The 3rd quarter was when I actually achieved “wood”, because we were on pace to destroy this team, and it was all smiles. At one point the lead was 35 points, and I admit I did briefly pass out, yet a disconcerting 4th quarter brought me screeching back to reality.

It was here in the 4th that I actually did shit myself. Quest went on an 18 point streak, (I was wearing an adult diaper, for your information), but the Blues’ lead was insurmountable, and they held on for the win, 79-64.

I was confused, and asked coach Yu to explain it for me: “We stuck to the game plan - defense. And 3 out of 4 quarters is not bad. I would say that last quarter we slipped up a bit but that happens when you have such a big lead.”

Well I know what is in store for these sorry bastards. This weekend the Blues play the 3rd place UBCO Heat in Kelowna, with only 2 points separating the Blues from the Okanogan Heat. With such close standings, wins are critical to secure a playoff spot. When this team is on, they look unstoppable, but they are going to have to be very focused to get the wins on the road, especially against a very good team like the Heat.

Even though I won’t be there to offer wisdom and guidance, I know these modern gladiators can find the courage to overcome, channeling the power that made them successful against the Quest Kermodes. And emerge victorious! Be strong, my children.

The Blues play VIU Feb, 12-13 and Kwantlen Feb 19-20.

// Mike Kennedy,

season ticket holder

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