Saturday, December 27, 2008
I can't WAIT for the 2009 NHL Hockey Classic! I'm not as true-blue a hockey fan as Steve is; I like it, but Steve is fanatic about it. But the 2008 Classic about made a believer of me.
The game was on New Year's Day in Buffalo, NY; it set an NHL attendance record with over 71,000 in attendance. Can you imagine? 71,000 people wanting to sit outside in a snow storm to watch hockey? It was great! The commentators even quoted rhapsodic statements from Jack Falla's classic book, Home Ice about the joys of skating outdoors on frozen ponds, which I promptly ordered off Amazon.
The rink was a one-time deal in Ralph Wilson stadium and was constructed just for the game. The teams in the 2008 game were the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Buffalo Sabres and my Penguins won in overtime on a Crosby goal. What thrilled me most was seeing the unrestrained glee and total abandon that instilled Crosby as he played. Those guys were all like big kids playing on a frozen pond that day. The snow was falling freely, the fans were enthusiastic and the game was great.
This year will be the Blackhawks and the hated Red Wings (Steve hates the Red Wings) and will be at Wrigley Field. It'll be great and I can't WAIT!