The Flight Plan for the Airport Lounge podcast

MONTREAL, QC - JUNE 07: Logan Stanley #64 of the Winnipeg Jets celebrates his goal with teammates on the bench against the Montreal Canadiens during the second period in Game Four of the Second Round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Bell Centre on June 7, 2021 in Montreal, Canada. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

My co-host Mike wrote an incredible article about how he (and many other Winnipeggers) have been resurrected as fans of the Winnipeg Jets. So, while Mike artfully wrote about HOW we got here, I will take a few lines to chronicle WHERE we are going as a podcast – in a uniquely Winnipeg manner.

As a middle-aged, suburban, bearded, IPA-drinking male, it is my cultural (or lack thereof) duty to have a podcast. With Winnipeg being a hockey-mad Canadian city with no airport but (surprisingly) good Wi-Fi, it just naturally followed that the podcast HAD to be hockey related. Right?

Like most Canadian kids, I grew up playing hockey. I was reasonably decent – a big kid with some skill. But my real talent was as a football player. I went on to play university football in Canada, and then onto a coaching career with the University of Manitoba. I have coached since 1997, won a national championship, as well as several national “bowl” games. It provides an interesting lens for “analyzing” the Winnipeg Jets.

So, hopefully I can channel the best of these two worlds into making something interesting while examining just what the hell just happened over the course of the past week with our beloved Winnipeg Jets.

Listen, it is fine to play emotional twister for 2.5 hours 82 times (or more) each NHL season, but eventually my brain turns back on and I crave answers to the questions posed by the outcome of the game. WHY are they Jets winning but being outshot each game? What is driving our success on the Power Play? Why do our defensemen ice the puck so regularly?

I think that when we do the podcast job “well”, we ask the right questions and maybe identify some possible answers. We promise to “borrow” the best analysis from the most credible sources (with appropriate citation of course … a holdover from an aggressively liberal arts education). You deserve the absolute best in “leveraged” analysis!

For me, it is less about the destination and more about the journey. I want to love the characters that join me on that journey. The players … the fans … my friends … even my co-host Mike. I want to engage both the mind and the heart. I want to know EVERYTHING about my team, what they are doing and where they are going.  

So maybe that’s what makes The Airport Lounge slightly different: it’s emotional but not reactionary; it’s thoughtful but not overly technical; and it likes to have fun – even when there may not be a lot of fun to be had. It is a dizzying vortex of contradictions. Kinda like Winnipeg.

Will the Jets ever win the Stanley Cup? I don’t know. Will you ever win the lottery? I don’t know that either, but we’ll all keep buying tickets. I don’t expect everyone to like the Jets – heck, some nights I don’t. But I will always love them. And this podcast is our weekly testimonial to that fact.

So, if you want to join us on our journey in attempting to make sense of this crazy thing called fandom of the Winnipeg Jets, that’s awesome. As we noted in our end of year podcast a few weeks ago, we hope we can ask a few good questions, provide a few (informed) answers, and have a few laughs along the way.

We’re just a couple of guys, sitting around, having a couple of drinks, waiting for the Jets to take off. Like in an Airport Lounge. We hope you can join us, because the first round is always on us.

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