When the Nashville Predators defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs by a score of 4-2 in Canada Thursday, all four of the goals were scored by American-born players. Craig Smith had two, while Seth Jones and Matt Cullen each scored once. Colin Wilson also had two assists, so he was included as well.
As the Preds often do when returning from a road trip, they'll play a highlight package to recap what fans might have missed on the giant video board. So when the team took to home ice to take on the New York Rangers Saturday, they wanted to especially mark Thursday's great American triumph over Canada, er… Toronto.
There were the usual game highlights, but this time, they were interspersed with some over-the-top American imagery set to "Real American," the entrance music for Cold War-era Hulk Hogan. The results were incredible.
Among the images, frequent appearances by my favorite member of the animal kingdom: The Bald Eagle (which, in my opinion, should always be capitalized and preceded by “The”). Also featured, great American icons like the aforementioned Hogan, Burt Reynolds as The Bandit, Maverick from Top Gun, Mount Rushmore, a hot dog, GI Joe, RoboCop, Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Chuck Norris, and some guys named Benjamin Franklin and Abraham Lincoln.
Also, the highlights are preceeded by The Bald Eagle in flight with the Thomas Jefferson quote: “The cement of this union is the heart-blood of every American.”
So basically, this is the greatest highlight package ever created by any team in the history of American sport. (Further proof the Preds' video staff is firing on all cylinders right now is the team's holiday card for this year. It is also tremendous.)
The Preds include players of many nationalities, of course, but they're particularly American this year. Nashville is the home club of U.S. Olympic Team general manager David Poile and has eight Americans on the current roster. That includes the aforementioned Jones, who is by many accounts the future of American hockey as we know it.
Unfortunately the Predators lost the same night the video was played. If you're wondering how that's humanly possible, both goals the Rangers scored in the game came off the sticks of American-born players, Ryan McDonagh and Derek Stepan.
Sometimes a one team's Americanness can cancel out the other's, which I believe was a theory of inventor Thomas Alva Edison's. I could just be making that up though. America.