Posted on: February 21, 2010 10:23 pm
Edited on: February 22, 2010 12:26 am
Most Americans who don't closely follow hockey have never heard the name Brian Rafalski. Now, he'll become one of the most well known Brian's in two countries.
Because of Rafalski it's so quiet in Canada right now you can hear the maple syrup freezing. That other noise coming from across the border was John Candy turning in his grave.
They're not jumping off bridges in Canada. They're jumping into ice holes.
Before the Olympics, Rafalski had four goals in 57 games for Detroit. In the Olympics alone, he's equaled that. It's an incredible outburst of a previously mostly unknown guy outside the hockey world. He was one of the catalysts in America's important victory over Canada.
Names like Lindsey Vonn, Bode Miller and Apolo Ohno are the Olympians the casual sports fan knows. Brian Rafalski wasn't a household name. Until now.
Now, you can expect Rafalski to have his own clothing line, McDonald's commercial and Nike spot. He'll also spawn a new lingo. To be Rafalski'd, i.e., to get beat down by guy who came out of nowhere.
This USA hockey team has the chance to produce an entire new generation of heroes. Their inspiring game against Canada may just be the start of something special.
It's at least the start of a new life for a man named Rafalski.