hockey, eh


Ouch. Let us speak of this wretched game no more.

Instead let us hope that Spokane wins its final 2 games of the season so that Seattle can face Kelowna in the first round of the playoffs and my epic crush on that team can be catered to. God my life is so small sometimes :-)

Saturday we finally got down to Kent to see the Thunderbirds play in their new arena. It was such an improvement on the Key Arena setup for hockey: the arena was actually tailored to the dimensions of the rink, it was an appropriate size (~6500 seats) for junior hockey so the place didn’t seem deserted, etc. Unfortunately, the concession stands don’t bold a candle to those in Kamloops! I mean, in Kamloops they had samosas! Someday Kent may be as cosmopolitan as Kamloops, I guess, but it will take time ;-)

There was a good sized and very enthusiastic crowd and an exciting and well-played game. Despite being outplayed except at goalie, the Thunderbirds won in overtime. I really enjoy Kelowna. They’ve got the Bloodoff brothers, which: awesome. They’ve got cool uniforms. Their team name =/= their mascot. They’ve got a 6’7″ monster defenseman. And this game I learned they’ve got a goalie who puts on a stretching clinic at nearly every substantial stoppage of play.

We sat in one of the end zones. Photo of the ice after the jump.

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Over New Years’ we went to Sun Peaks, BC with seven friends and had a ball. One night we drove down to Kamloops for a junior hockey game :-)

Despite being last in their division, Moose Jaw really took it to Kamloops. They do have the WHL’s leading scorer, and we saw him score two breakaway shorthanded goals, which, wow.

It was a nice arena, probably seating 6500 or so, and totally tailored to hockey. Unlike Key Arena where the Thunderbirds have been playing, which is crap. Also unlike the Key, the arena food was actually good.

I got an email about the new 3rd jersey for the Flyers and why do teams persist with this stripe-around-the-hips design? It looks like they put a thick white belt over an orange jersey. Who thinks this is a good idea? WHO?

 

flyers3rdjersey

image taken from http://flyers.nhl.com/team/app/?service=page&page=NHLPage&id=11953

tbirds Well, the T-birds don’t seem to be off to a stellar start this season, and Saturday’s game might have showed us why. Sure, they’ve lost a fistful of good players to being over 20 years old. But they could hardly ever gain possession of the puck, couldn’t maintain possession (Kelowna did look strong defensively at center ice), and lacked speed.

Thomas Hickey was back, having failed to make the cut in Los Angeles. So we were happy to see him because he’s pretty much the only capable passer out there.

Funny thing was, we saw Kelowna play the T-birds four times last season (including 3 playoff games), so I recognized a lot of their players too. Like, “oh, yeah, the Bloodoff brothers! Awesome!” and “oh, yeah, there’s that super-tall defenseman!” And by that, I mean 6″ 7′. Yes, I checked. Shut up.

With so few games being played at the Key this season, we’re not sure how many we’ll get to see. They’re home this Saturday, but we’re going out of town.

This past weekend, CBC broadcast the NHL opening weekend games from Europe. They have no new Hockey Night in Canada theme song yet; in fact they mentioned they’d have a whole program later that evening to present the five tunes that are finalists for selection. I guess the loss of the HNIC theme was such an enormous event that CBC decided to embrace the meta drama and turn that lemon into lemonade.

Funniest moment of the night? Between games, they showed some Swedish metal band performing in the arena in Stockholm before the Sens-Pens game. Ron McLean declared them “a poor man’s Marilyn Manson” but admitted that he likes The Hives. Bwah!

The Thunderbirds just released their tentative season schedule. A while back I was encouraged to learn that their new arena in Kent wouldn’t be ready until January, so we’d get a few months of home games at Key Arena before their move.

Unfortunately, they’re optimizing the first half of their season for road games, playing 26 of their first 34 games away :-( The only autumn home dates appear to be:

  • Saturday, October 4 vs. Spokane
  • Saturday, October 18 vs. Kelowna — I might be out of town for fantasy hockey draft… now I’m REALLY hoping we host it in Seattle this year!
  • Saturday, October 25 vs. Everett — I might be out of town for a family event
  • Tuesday, November 4 vs. Edmonton
  • Friday, November 7 vs. Red Deer
  • Saturday, November 22 vs. Portland
  • Friday, November 28 vs. Kootenay — I’ll probably be out of town for Thanksgiving on the east coast
  • Sunday, December 7 vs. Calgary

They also booked Key Arena for games on December 27, 29 and 30, but are optimistic that they’ll be in Kent for those. Waaah. I’m losing my Thunderbirds.

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