A few weeks ago, in a small cabin south of Whitehorse, just after 10 pm, I hugged a grown man in an emotionally charged way normally reserved only for funerals and weddings.

I then danced a jig, repeatedly fist-pumped and made a sound one friend described as the noise his three-year-old son makes when he has to go potty.

And it was all triggered because an over-paid celebrity athlete had scored a goal.

But his was not just any goal; it was a goal three years in the making.

Vancouver Canuck right winger Alex Burrows had finally exorcised the demon known as the Chicago Blackhawks.

By driving a rubberized puck past the top left shoulder of a rookie goalie named Corey Crawford in sudden death overtime, of game seven no less, most of British Columbia and a good chunk of the Yukon was allowed to breathe a collective sigh of relief.

By scoring that goal he allowed the Canucks to avert a monumental choke and punch their ticket to the next round.

He had saved their record breaking season and had silenced the critics.

By scoring that goal, he made it OK to dance a jig in a cabin and hug a married man.

By intercepting that clearing pass and rifling a slap shot to the top shelf it allowed mortgages, Visa bills and car payments to be forgotten.

It allowed men to continue to let the dust collect on their razors and keep their facial hair growing in a show of solidarity with their fellow man, their fellow fan.

With that goal that spur-of-the-moment jersey purchase and decision to paste a sticker on the bumper and attach a flag to the window was justified.

The six beers consumed more than usual for a Tuesday night suddenly became OK.

A controversial Joel Otto goal in 1989, a Nathan Lafayette shot off the post five years later and Nicholas Lindstrom dagger from centre – all got put in the past.

With that goal and subsequent win, adults became kids again.

Like a childhood Christmas morning, the goal brought on the need to pick up the phone and call a friend and tell them what you’d gotten for Christmas, this year’s gift being a ticket to the second round.

It sent fans to Facebook to unleash their most witty and emotion-fueled status updates.

But perhaps the best part about that goal and the subsequent bedlam that followed is the fact it was just one team.

The same emotionally charged antics may play out this spring in the living rooms, taverns and – yes – cabins of those cheering for Montreal or Detroit or San Jose or Boston.

Hockey-god willing, it could even return for my fellow Canuck fans and me.

It’s all part of the joy of the Stanley Cup playoffs and the fever.

So if you see a man in June looking disheveled, his fingernails gone and his belly more “beerful” than usual, don’t be alarmed.

Be happy and know that he most likely has just had a wonderful spring.