When you enter Dean McCord’s home you won’t need three guesses to figure out which hockey team he loves. Jerseys, signed autographs, stickers, posters, red and white lights, and even red curtains adorn his living room. It’s hard to find a patch of wall space that’s not occupied by Calgary Flames insignia and memorabilia.
The born-and-bred Calgarian was 12 years old when the Calgary Flames would win their one and only Stanley Cup in 1988 (though here’s to hoping this fact will be inaccurate this year). He also remembers the closest the Flames ever got to another Stanley Cup win in 2004.
“I got to go to game six of the Detroit [game] where we went in overtime and that was unbelievable,” he said. “There's just something about hockey that is emotional and exciting and not only as a player but as a fan, you just get involved in it.”
When McCord was in Grade 10 when he got his very first jersey with his favourite number: 14. Since that time the number and the player who wore that jersey: Theoren Fleury is McCord’s all-time favourite Calgary Flames player. But, what about the best player?
“That would be Jarome Iginla. On and off the ice, he’s a role model,” McCord said.
Turning to look at his collection of Calgary Flames everything, he says that much of what adorns his home is the product of a lifetime of collecting.
“Since I was a kid I basically; I got this through Christmas gifts, birthday gifts. People knew I was a flames fan, so they would offer me stuff,” he said. “[Some of it] I bought it on my own. It's just an ongoing process and it never ends.”
Turning to tonight’s game, McCord says he hopes to see more goals scored.
“My prediction and of course I'm going to be biased, I'm going to say 4-2 [for] Calgary. However, it probably may be a low-scoring game again just the way the two coaches have been playing it,” McCord said. “If you got two good goalies, you're not going to get a lot of goals, especially in the playoffs because goaltending and defence win you hockey games.”
But what of the ultimate prize in the post-season. Does McCord, perhaps the ultimate die-hard Flames fan believe in his heart of hearts that the Calgary Flames can repeat history?
“I think we could get there. I'm not going to say we are going to get there. I'm a realistic fan at the same time. You do need goaltending. You do need toughness; you need to be big in the playoffs,” he said. “And they're coached by a good coach: Sutter, he's won two Stanley Cups, so I think he knows what it takes to win. We have all the elements, it's whether or not they put it together and they perform.”
The Calgary Flames currently lead the series 1-0 against the Dallas Stars. Game two of the series starts at 8 P.M. on Thursday.
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