This Tuesday’s edition of the #CBJ Community Spotlight features a community favorite, Dannielle “Dannie” Browne (@frickindannie). Dannie is one of the more knowledgeable hockey/#CBJ fans on twitter. She’s got good hockey insight and when she’s not making fun of her interesting mixture of co-workers she’s helping to educate other fans. It’s unfortunate that she’s a Michigan fan but we can’t all be perfect. When she’s not working, in school, or watching hockey Dannie also creates a lot of custom #CBJ t-shirts for her Skreened store, “Strait Jackets”.
Who is Dannie? In her own words:
Dannie is “that girl from Cincinnati” who drives a LOT to come to games… despite being 100 miles away, I make it to at least twenty a season (and made it to ~10-15 when I lived 220 miles away in Louisville). I’m a legal assistant/paralegal/”do-er of all things that nobody else wants to” in a bank’s legal department by day, Finance student at the University of Cincinnati by night, and full time crazy cat lady. And somehow I fit watching hockey in there. I want to live in Columbus when I grow up.
On to the questions!
The easy questions:
1. Favorite #CBJ player & why:
I’m going to have to go with Ryan Russell. My favorite #CBJ player used to be my favorite non-#CBJ player. I kind of discovered him at an AHL Bulldogs game in 2007-08 when I was like, “Hey, I thought that guy played for Columbus like, a week ago…” and ta-da, what a coincidence, he was actually the twin brother of my budding #CBJ favorite. He wasn’t having a very good rookie season with the Bulldogs, and they sent him down to ECHL Cincinnati where he tore it up completely, including a 2OT conference-winning goal en route to winning the Kelly Cup. So, I’ve kind of loved him ever since and it kind of made my whole offseason when Howson dealt for him. The kind of player he was in the ECHL (high-flying scoring machine) is totally not what he has built his AHL successes on, but I really love that he’s the kind of guy who shows up every game and does what he’s asked and prefers not to be in the spotlight at all. He blocks shots, kills penalties, and will play anywhere in the lineup. I was really excited he got a chance to fill in with the Jackets this season. I don’t know if he’ll ever become a full time NHL player, but I can see him developing into a nice unsung third/fourth line defensive minute-eater kind of guy. I also kind of love John Moore and Ryan Johansen and I’m really looking forward to them getting past the awkward rookie stage.
2. Favorite non-#CBJ player & why:
Does this question need to be asked? Kris Russell! There is no really good answer to “why” on this. I own that he’s kind of lame sometimes, but I’m really happy he’s playing with Hitchcock again. Hitch brings out an intensity in him that Arniel couldn’t. Other favorites tend to be Michigan products: Max Pacioretty, Kevin Porter (he was good once, I swear), Matt Hunwick… or the local boy/Leafs prospect, Tyler Biggs. I used to watch his dad play. I think this makes me old.
3. Favorite #CBJ moment:
Game 3 of the 2009 playoffs – the first ever home playoff game. Something about the vibe before the game that night has never been duplicated. I didn’t make it to game four, but I remember those two games like they were yesterday and can’t wait for playoffs to come back. I also cried the night they clinched the playoff spot. Uh, and a lot of other times.
4. Favorite general hockey moment:
2008 Kelly Cup Playoffs. Watching the Cyclones win the cup after such an amazing season (regular season champions, broken records for most games won, the players took home all kinds of hardware in individual awards) and watching a handful of guys who are now in the NHL (most notably, David Desharnais of Montreal)… nothing will ever top that season. Plus, I drank out of the cup, which was badass. I don’t think anything can compare to the first time you watch a team you’re 100% emotionally invested in win a championship.
5. Team you would root for if #CBJ had never existed (not moved):
It probably would have been Detroit. Back when I first started watching hockey, before the #CBJ were an on-ice entity, I bounced around between favorite teams and even for the first few years I watched a lot of other teams. But… let’s pretend I never admitted this.
6. Favorite non-#CBJ jersey (in general, not that you own):
Not necessarily the jersey itself, but the St. Louis third logo with the arch, I freaking love that thing for no good reason at all other than it looks awesome.
Some tougher questions:
7. What are your expectations for the #CBJ in the next 1, 3 and 5 years:
On the one-year horizon, I see a little more aching and pain while they go through the growing pains of fixing the last two years. I don’t think anything they can do will patch everything overnight, but I definitely think it will be better (…it has to be, right?). The three to five year, I think they’ll finally start to evolve into a middle-of-the-road kind of team, where if they at least meet expectations they should have no problem competing for the playoffs every year, but if they underwhelm they could easily miss.
8. If you were GM of the #CBJ, who do you draft at second overall & why:
This is so not a Dannielle question. Mainly because much like Scott Howson and Doug MacLean, no matter which answer I choose, it will be the wrong one. I’m better at picking backup goalies.
9. Would you rather see the #CBJ be more competitive next season but miss the playoffs or get another high draft pick & why:
Have some pride and be competitive. 100 times in a row I would take a team that competes and ultimately falls short of its goal, than one that screws around, underachieves, and misses the postseason by a landslide like this past year. I’d rather enjoy the 82 games than have a miserable season and have everything weighing on taking a chance on the “right” eighteen year old kid to save the day.
10. Can you list something(s) that you like and something(s) you’d like to see changed with the #CBJ community:
I wish more people drank the kool-aid. I know, last summer we were all like, “Yeah! We’re awesome! We have Jeff Carter!” and we totally got burnt (joke’s on us!), but now everybody is like, “Boooo! We stink! Sell the farm.” Maybe it’s just the optimist in me but I wish more people would be patiently optimistic. It seems like people are rooting for failure. Hopefully someday they can change that culture.
11. Who are 5 #CBJ twitter accounts you think more people should be following?
@RobMixer (but who isn’t following Sir Mix-a-Lot?), @SirChadlyOC and @AKrygier because they make me laugh CONSTANTLY, even when they make fun of the #CBJ and/or me, @AlisonL because if you don’t follow her, you’re going to miss all of the fun things, and @greegor23 because she’s awesome!
12. Any shout outs you want to give or blogs/twitter accounts you want to help promote?
Check out “Strait Jackets”, my custom Blue Jackets t-shirt store on Skreened.
13. Any final thoughts… on anything?