Column: Chiefs season a rarity

The Chilliwack Chiefs almost never have a season like this one, says columnist Jacob Bestebroer.

Prior to each Chilliwack Chiefs home game I make a point of chatting with the opposition broadcaster. My objective is, of course, to gain information and perspective on that night’s opposition.

In talking with Jon Zacks, the play by play guy for the West Kelowna Warriors a few weeks ago, he not only provided me with perspective on the Warriors but the Chiefs as well.

In discussing the current Chiefs season he commented that some BCHL franchises go through seasons like this frequently, most go through seasons like this occasionally and a select few, including the Chiefs, go through this once every 20 years or so.

Solid point.

The Chiefs were mathematically eliminated from the playoffs Saturday night.

It’s the first time since the 1992-93 season that they have met that fate. But even that season wasn’t quite like this. While this year’s Chiefs have struggled from the start, that 1992-93 team had a record of 16 wins and 16 losses at the Christmas break. After the break they won just four of their final 28 games.

I’m not suggesting that because of the rarity of seasons like this, Chiefs fans should not be disappointed. But I do think it makes it easier to accept.

I also plan to fully enjoy each one of the games left in this regular season.

When I think back to when I first started watching sports, I realize now I was only ever focussed fully on the game I was watching. I knew very little about where the teams were in the standings etc. I was too young to know, but had I known I doubt I would have cared.

When I was 8-10 years old two teams I enjoyed watching occasionally on TV (sports were only on occasionally back then) were the Vancouver Canucks and the NBA’s Seattle Supersonics.

I can still tell you the starting lineup of those Supersonics teams and most of my wardrobe was Canucks related.

It was only years later that I realized I had watched quite a few Supersonics games the year they won the NBA championship and that the Canucks were for the most part first round playoff fodder for much better opponents.

So that’s how I’m going to enjoy the rest of this Chiefs season.

I’m not going to think about the standings. I’m going to enjoy watching young players like Kyle Westeringh and Jordan Kawaguchi improve and I’m going to enjoy watching a small group of Chiefs players play their final junior hockey games.

The Chiefs are on the road this weekend, travelling to Trail Friday night and Salmon Arm Saturday. Sunday’s a day off before an afternoon game in Surrey on Monday.

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