At 14:13 of the first period of the Phoenix Coyotes' home game against the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday, Keith Yandle(notes) scored a power play goal to tie the opening-round Western Conference playoff contest.
The VERSUS cameras showed players celebrating, fans celebrating, opponents dejected ... but alas, no snakes.
Please recall earlier this week when we reported on the inspired lunacy of the "#ThrowTheSnake" movement, in which Coyotes blogger Travis Hair became the focal point for a campaign urging him to throw a rubber snake on the ice during the first Coyotes' home playoff game since 2002. Why? As Travis said:
"There's going to be some moron there with an octopus who's going to throw it on the ice. Why not have one little octopus look pathetic next to a thousand rubber snakes? Why not?" said Hair. "It's stupid, but you're on the news. It's already going to be a big hockey event, so why not have it be a really cool, funny event that'll be talked about for years."
Moments passed after the Yandle goal. The players lined up for the faceoff.
Suddenly, the ref took his attention away from center ice.
One of the linesmen skated into the attacking zone ... and collected the rubber snake seen above and right; taking it near the Red Wings bench and tossing it off the ice.
A new tradition born? A multi-day joke given its punch line? We'll leave that for the historians to decide.
Right now, we're just proud to have witnessed an NHL game that featured a dead octopus in the pregame, a rubber snake (or snakes) in the first period, Muhammad Ali in the crowd and a raucous bunch of Coyotes fans turning Glendale into a Stanley Cup playoff town.
Puckheads rule. That is all.