Over at SB Nation Longform, Jeff Pearlman details a miracle put on ice:

Around the same time the hockey team was establishing itself as an American phenomenon, movie theatres across the country were showing "Rocky III." This time around, Rocky Balboa is the reigning heavyweight champion, softened by success and accolades and myriad commercial opportunities.

Unbeknownst to the pugilist, his people have been feeding him creampuffs — one soft opponent after another. When it's finally brought to his attention that the fighters have been selected for their mediocrity, Balboa is incredulous. "What do you mean?" he says to Mickey, his manager. "They was hand-picked? Set-ups?"

"No," Mickey replies. "They weren't set-ups. They was good fighters. But they weren't killers."

[Photo Credit: Getty Images]