The Schwartz quickly ended the interview by sayuing “no.” It sounded mean. It soiunded bitter and it was a bit surprising. However, Schwartz is a competitor and he really wanted that game. The entire community wanted it. You are probably not in the best mood today. You saw your team compete but lacked enough savvy and experience to pull off victory in the Lions first playoff game in 12 years.
Once you wipe away the cheers and chip away the bitterness you will realize today is a good day. The Lions not only have a future but now they’ve got that chip on their shoulder that most teams need to compete for championships. You don’t just roll up on experienced teams and beat them in professional sports. You need anger, hurt, disappointment and a big pile of ashes to build greatness.
The Lions built that against the Saints. You can call it the Bourbon Street Blues. But this team needed this game as a building block for the future. I talked to Lions center Dominic Raiola before the game and he admitted.
“We don’t know what to expect.”
Now he knows. When you look at many of the great champions in sports they needed disappointment to become champions. How long did it take Steve Yzerman and the Red Wings to win their Cups? The Bad Boy Pistons learned how to win from the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers. The Tigers could be building upon that after losing to Texas in the American League Championship Series.
I saw the final minutes of the game at Hoops in Auburn Hills and one fan complained that New Orleans did not get called for any holds. A couple of others played the “officials done us wrong” card. That is part of the process. Do you really think the referees are going to give the Lions the benefit of the doubt over the Saints?