An Ode to Strongbow
I will admit this isn’t something you would typically see someone write an ode to (unless you are of the Strongbow family). What most people don’t realize is Strongbow’s pivotal role in ending the (at the time) longest losing streak in American professional sports history. Of course, I am talking about the 26 game losing streak the Cavs put together during the 2010-2011 NBA Season.
It was a blustery February night when I headed downtown to see the Cavs with one friend, one colleague, and one acquaintance. I will leave it up to them to figure out which represents each one. The Cavs had not won since December 18 in overtime against the lowly Knicks. What happened over the next 26 games could only be described as a calamity of errors, misfortune and straight up bad luck. We didn’t have much hope for that night. We were just looking at grabbing a drink after work and heading over to the game for a little fun. We ended up having way more than a little fun that night.
It all started when the four of us made our way over to Cooperstown (or Hometown Heroes or whatever it was called at the time). Strongbow was on special for $2 for a tall draft if I remember correctly), so we threw caution to the wind and partook in the golden apple nectar. After getting our fill, it was time to head over the the Q. What happened is what I can best describe as the second most exciting Cavs I have attended in person (first place being Game 3 of last year’s NBA final, third place would not be that game against the Grizzlies where we trotted out Michael Cage and Clarence Weatherspoon. I will go to my grave believing Strongbow, and not JJ Hickson, is what propelled the Cavs to victory that evening. The soon to be 32-50 Clippers fell in overtime to the Cavaliers that night, 126-119. When the final buzzer sounded, the party did not end. It continued. We headed over to Flannery’s and continued on our Strongbow binge. The evening of fun and revelry is still spoken of in hushed tones inside that fine Irish establishment.
Ever since that night, when the Cavs need that extra lift, I drink a Strongbow. As Brian Fantana in Anchorman notes, like Sex Panther…60% of the time, it works every time. Thanks to that evening, my mind will always associate alcoholic apple juice with winning.
When Cleveland finally wins that elusive championship, I can assure you I will be nursing a pretty nasty Strongbow headache the next morning.