Accepting hockey's highest honor

Updated: November 18, 2004, 6:01 PM ET
By John Buccigross | Special to ESPN.com

There is no doubt in my mind that most NHL owners and NHL players discount the efforts and passion of the NHL fan to a large and, for me, insulting degree. That was the catalyst in giving you a place to voice your love of the game and remind them of your value and passion.

I asked you to write some lines on what hockey means to you, and boy did that explode the ol' Inbox! I've never had such a reaction in this space. I wish I could use them all, but there are limits.

The backdrop was ...

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