June 26, 2009 at 5:32 pm

Terry Foster: Terry's Town

Cup loss devastates this Wings fan

JoAnne McCarthy of Clinton Township doesn't care if you consider her a poor sport.

But when the final seconds were winding down in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals, she left her seat and stood by the Gordie Howe statue in the concourse of Joe Louis Arena.

She did not want to see NHL commissioner Gary Bettman present the Stanley Cup to Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby.

"I could not do it," said McCarthy, a season ticket-holder who attended the game with her husband, Jerry. "I did not want to see Sidney Crosby celebrate on our home ice. If you want to call me a poor sport, then go ahead."

How about we just call the McCarthy family passionate Red Wings fans? They never expected to see the Wings lose and will do anything to show support for the team.

The McCarthys even bought tickets to the Red Wings' season opener in Stockholm, Sweden, at Globen Arena in the fall. Even though they heard the games were sold out, they went online and purchased tickets and plan to spend a couple additional days in Sweden to watch their favorite team.

"It is a once-in-a-lifetime trip," JoAnne said.

As far as the Stanley Cup loss, Joanne said: "I will never get over it. But I didn't see the celebration so as far as I am concerned, it never happened. I can continue to live in my fantasy world."

All hail the Lugnuts

I own a red Lansing Lugnuts sweatshirt. And it appears as if a lot of other folks own Lugnuts gear, also. Retail manager Matt Hicks nearly jumped out of his shoes when he saw the Lugnuts are one of the top 10 selling minor league merchandise sellers in the country.

There are two keys. The frightened Lugnut with one bottom tooth hanging out is one of the most unique logos in the nation. They also have a neat-looking black road jersey that is trimmed in red. It retails for $90 and has been selling like hot cakes.

"It gathers a lot of attention," Hicks said.

Hicks said the Lugnuts merchandise sales increased by 10 percent last season and are on pace to do the same this year. The sales certainly cannot be attributed to what is happening on the field. The Class A affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays is 26-43 heading into tonight's game against Dayton at Oldsmobile Park.

"It was really cool to see we made the list," said Hicks, who saw the list in ESPN the Magazine. "It was like, 'Wow, we are really in this.'"

Sandoval update

The entire Lions family continues to root for security director Ricky Sandoval , who was diagnosed with cancer three years ago.

I wrote about Sandoval about three weeks ago and a number of heartfelt stories have poured in from people telling him to hang in there. They are from people who have family members fighting the disease, some for as long as three years.

The San Francisco 49ers, whom Sandoval worked for, also are sending prayers. Lions punter Nick Harris said Sandoval's spirits and demeanor were so high many of the new players didn't even know he was ill.

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