Brett Hull Tweeted.
In case you haven’t heard already – this story has now been on the local TV morning shows – Brett Hull recently jabbed Sabres fans with the following tweet:
Here’s his “new pic” (his Twitter avatar), enlarged for your enjoyment:
We all remember 1999. We all remember “no goal.” It’s what we do: we remember this event, because, well it was a big deal, but it also happened almost 13 years ago. It’s been a long time since it happened. I think it’s safe to say that we’re over it, and my, how things have changed. We’re into something new in town, you know, this Pegula Fever that’s taken over every hockey household in WNY and beyond. Dallas is into something new too – nowadays they’re the ones with ownership problems.
I look at that picture again, and I see a snarky smile on an aging icon. Hull’s poking fun, sure. He’s having fun. And why not? Isn’t it time we let go of this supposed controversy and got on with ourselves?
Even here on BSN we’ve lightened up about this already. We had our fun with the ol’ “no goal” during our “Summer Awards” series. Remember “the Dirty Brett?” Goodtimes:
Buffalo will never get a chance to have revenge on Hull, but he at least is the inspiration behind today’s award, which goes to the player “most hated by Sabres fans, and who causes the most anger and/or sadness through their distasteful decision to continue to exist.” We’ll entertain two categories here: the “Permanently Loathed” sect and the “Reproachable Act” sect (who will be represented by players who slapped Buffalo fans around specifically in the 2010-11 season).
Danny Briere was our winner (over Chara, Eric Staal, and Danny Carcillo). Briere! Yea, I think we’ve adjusted the trajectory of our player hatred in this town.
Beyond the many seasons and years that have passed since “no goal,” are three important facts.
- It was a crap rule, and was scrapped after its one season in the NHL largely due to this controversy.
- The goal was ruled legal, so technically, Brett didn’t cheat.
- Above all, it’s time to admit it: that was a damn good shot by a legendary sniper.
If not for that ridiculous rule, there wouldn’t have been any controversy. All that we would remember is that Brett Hull, one of the greatest scorers to ever lace up a pair of skates, was the guy who scored the goal that lost us the Stanley Cup in ’99. It’s a pretty good way to go out, isn’t it? I mean, if you’re going to lose, you mine as well lose to the best.
So, take this tweet for what it is – something silly, something fun. A message from a legend to a fan base about a pretty big moment in hockey that none of us will ever forget, for various reasons. A message that says “I cheated, or not, and it doesn’t matter. Smooches.”
I could still do without the smooches. But I’ve moved on.
I hope all of you have too.
UPDATE: for those curious enough or those just oddly reminiscent, here’s the NHL’s explanation of why the goal counted.
NHL officials supervisor Bryan Lewis said Hull’s goal counted because he maintained possession of the puck from the time he played it beyond the crease.
“A puck that rebounds off the goalie, the goal post, an opposing player is not deemed to be a change of possession,” Lewis said. “Therefore, Hull would be deemed to be in control of the puck, allowed to shoot and score a goal, even though the one foot would be in the crease in advance of the puck.”
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