Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Being there

A random collection of thoughts from the fan sitting in seat 9, row 27, section 227 of Rexall Place.

-As game-pal and exceptional local illustrator Raymond Biesinger pointed out repeatedly throughout the game, Rexall Place is many, many things, but in serious need of an upgrade it is not. The only real problem seems to be the lack of seats, which, last time I checked, was not a municipal priority.

-Though there were boos both before and after, there was nothing but cheering and applause for Smyth during the tribute. It was a modicum of class that restored some of my faith in Oiler fans. That said, I still think people who boo Smyth or accuse him of false emotions are candidates for a stringent eugenics program.

-I've read reports that this was an exciting game to watch on television, which has me pretty baffled. Colorado is one of the softest, most perimeteriest teams I've seen play in a while, and the Oil seemed to take their lead from them. Of our 27 shots, I'd be fairly surprised if any of them outside of the two goals came in the slot.

-I'm certain at least part of it is the whole boyish charm thing, but Sam Gagner is going to be a female-fan favourite in this city of the type not seen since Jason Arnott was parking his Jeep outside Barry T's. Cogs barely got a peep, but every time an Avs player so much as blinked at Samwise the women in our section were calling for blood.

-Speaking of female fans, those pink jerseys are just an abomination, on both an aesthetic and political level.

-Speaking of jerseys, one of the small joys of going to games is the menagerie of names and numbers on the back. Some of particular note:

The dude who had number 94 with the name "Loyalty" on the back.
Large fellow with a Stortini jersey. He's a season or two away from hiding that in the back of his closet with the Ralph Intranouvo.
A Mike Comrie jersey. That takes guts, especially since the Gagner nameplate would be a quick an highly acceptable fix.
I saw one each with Gagner and Cogliano, but I have to give serious credit to the middle-aged, roundish lady in a Brodziak. My mother's favourite player is Ethan Moreau, so I have scads of respect for anyone who takes a liking to grinders who play tough minutes, especially that quickly.

-I've never noticed this on television before, but Matt Greene is actually quite capable in transition, and he's actually really good at directing people in his own end; there were a few times I could hear him shouting directions from the upper deck, and they were safe, smart plays all. Why he can't actually play in the defensive zone is a complete mystery to me after this.

-Ales Hemsky currently sits third in the team in shots on goal, with 19. He shoots enough. Yelling "Shoot," especially when he's staring two opposing players in the face from the half-boards, is not good advice. I don't know why this always surprises me, since it's been true ever since I started attending hockey games live, but if the fans who bought seats had their way, hockey would be tennis on ice, with teams taking turns rushing through the neutral zone and firing as soon as they got inside the blue line.

-Beer is $8 a glass, and Rexall Place does not support unions (seriously, folks, don't drink Molson: union-busters, to say nothing of the quality of the actual beer); I heartily encourage anyone attending a game in the near future to flask it.


Anonymous said...

I saw a clip of that moment with Hemsky and I simultaneously love and hate that you've captured it here. Speaking of "what's wrong with this picture?"...sigh.

mc79hockey said...

Funny, there's a pretty iconic picture from Gretzky's return with him standing on one side of centre and some random Glory Boy on the other. Damned if I can find it anywhere but the resemblance is striking.

Anonymous said...

pitkanen is out for a month.

Anonymous said...

Eight bucks for a Molson! Now that's alcohol abuse.

Colby Cosh said...

What is this "Molson" of which you speak? I know there's a division of CoorsMiller Brewing Co. by that name.

Pleasure Motors said...

Facetious Canadiana is only one more reason not to drink it.

Anonymous said...

Random Comments,

-NHL Centre ice online is a total rip-off. Crap quality, no same day archiving if I actually don't want to watch the game at 4am.

-Flasking it has, is and always will be the option. $8 for the keg crap they serve is unholy and just one more reason to hate EIG.

-I think Greene is not too bad actually. My frame of reference is admittedly limited but what I saw I liked. Coiler fans, please do not boo him out of town yet. Let's see what can happen if we give a kid a few seasons to master the toughest position on the ice.

-I have seen a few hotties in tight pink jerseys. This is not a bad thing.

-Booing The Mullet is bad form. If you are doing this it is my simple request to you to kindly stop doing it. You have the right to do it, no question, for whatever bizarre reason you want, I'm just asking you to stop.


walkinvisible said...

i've gone on many a rant about the pink jerseys, but only one was published in the hockey news....

mike w said...

Heh. Nice rant.

I can tell you that finding smaller, reasonably-sized jerseys is equally a trial for dudes.

If I don't tuck my Oilers "small" jersey I end up looking like a teenage girl wearing a giant nightie.

Not that I'd ever come close to buying the Oilers current jersey, mind you.

abman said...

Your bit on people yelling "shoot" had me laughing, and I couldn't agree more.

Chris O said...

Mike, try being a basketball fan who wants a semi-normally sized jersey before you complain.

And yeah PM, the shoot thing was spot on. Sorry I didn't get back to you last night. Perhaps I'll try you RIGHT NOW.