The Caps don't need to win. But it hurts to see them skate through the final period of a pretty-much-must-win playoff game looking like they don't care.
What draws me to hockey is this: you FIGHT! And no matter what happens, no matter what the odds, no matter if you're bruised or broken or twisted or bleeding, you struggle to make the right choices and you fight until the end.
It's a beautiful metaphor for life. You may not win. Hey - let's face it - most of us don't. You're often up against forces that are larger and stronger than yourself. But you keep fighting. You don't stop skating, or thinking, a quarter of the way through the third period. You keep thinking, you keep talking with your teammates, you keep playing hard, you keep fighting.
And if you do that, then even if you loose - hey, this year 29 out of 30 NHL teams will NOT win the Stanley Cup! - you deserve to be proud.
I just want to feel proud of my team.
What is left at the bitter end, in the dusty display case of life: Some old hockey pants and a stick, a jersey or two - and, if you've earned it, PRIDE!