After scoring the first goal in yesterday’s Swedish Elite relegation game, Mika Zibanejad “Tebowed”.
An over-the-top goal celebration?
Shhhhhhhh… don’t tell Ken Warren.
Watched OHL highlights last night. Stop with the soccer goal celebrations already — diving on the ice, jumping into the glass. — Ken Warren (@Citizenkwarren) March 27, 2012
As Puck Daddy’s Sean Leahy pointed out, it’s been awhile since a hockey player has paid homage to the polarizing NFL quarterback.
It’s been a while since a hockey player celebrated a goal by Tebowing. Florida Panthers draft pick Rocco Grimaldi celebrated his first NCAA goal with North Dakota by doing so back in November. Same for former Los Angeles Kings defenseman Jack Johnson in January, who did so at the request of some friends who were in town for the game.
In an article that appeared on Aftonbladet’s website, Zibanejad admitted that he celebrated by doing the Tebow because he’s also Christian. (And also because Swedish comedy lags behind North American standards by roughly six months.)
Without the luxury of having steffeG around to translate it for us, my favorite paragraph from this article is:
Tim Tebow blev ett fenomen i USA under våren. 24-åringen, av många experter ansedd som en rätt medioker spelare i den amerikanska fotbollsligan NFL, storspelade plötsligt och slog med sitt Denver Broncos ut storfavoriten Pittsburgh Steelers ur slutspelet. Men det riktiga genombrottet medialt kom genom bönegesten.
Medioker? Slutspelet? Bonegesten?
Yeah, that describes the Tebow era in a nutshell. Somewhere Rocco Grimaldi is shamed into being mentioned in the same article as the word ‘slutspelet’.
We can always judge the appropriateness of a goal celebration in a game that is trying to determine which teams are not shitty enough to warrant playing in the SEL-2, but in consideration of how poorly their season has gone to this point, I’m not entirely certain that Mika’s actually Tebowing. Perhaps he’s just hoping that his Swedish hockey God, Alfie, will finally answer his prayers and allow him to come to North America and the NHL as quickly as possible.