It’s no secret that New York sports fans are among the most insane anywhere in the United States. They are fickle, rash, illogical extremists yearning for the good old days of the 80s and 90s, and I am proud to be one. If you sift through the hot takes, the calls to fire whoever, the constant panic, and the armchair GM-ing, every once in awhile you find one having fun. When you do, you find some of the funniest and most devoted fans in existence. The perfect example of this: Ryan Mead and the Church of Kakko.
Kaapo Kakko is only 18 years old and has only played 8 games with the New York Rangers, but he is already seen as the future of blueshirt hockey. Drafted #2 overall in the 2019, the Finnish 18 year old already has a spot as a top 6 forward in the garden. He competed in three international competitions before being drafted winning gold in all three. In the 2018 IIHF U18 World Championships, he tied for leading his Finnish team in points racking up 6 goals and 4 assists in 7 games. He has an assist and a goal through his first 8 games but a plus/minus of -8 and a negative point share. Regardless of these early concerning statistics, rangers fans are sticking with the young man and putting all their faith in him, most notably Ryan Mead.
The church has a central prayer to greet people on the face of the church’s website: “Kaapo Kakko is chosen, our lord and savior, a Finnish miracle, Cup-raiser. You are here because you acknowledge Kakko as our lord, let him be praised.” They sell posters of stained glass windows depicting Kaapo skating with a halo over his head and sweaters with the logo of the church. 1127 people and counting have purchased C.o.K. merchandise or signed up for the mailing list and have gotten their names on the clergy list on the Church of Kakko website. The whole thing is ridiculous, but it goes further into the realms of insanity.
Praise be to our lord, Kaapo Kakko.
Photo credits to:
- Getty Images
- The Church of Kakko
- Nick Depalo (The Bishop of Branding)