If you followed my Twitter/Facebook feed at all on Tuesday, you know how insane I went when I got to experience my first NHL game. And in a big way. We were on the front row right behind the Dallas Stars' bench. I can't even describe the awesomeness of that evening.
We arrived at the arena when it opened and watched warm up. Every time the Stars came out, I'd lean over the railing and solicited the fist bump from the team (which I would say about half the team acknowledged), screaming my encouragements to them.
My next statement is rather obvious: watching the game on TV is nothing like being there. But to describe what I mean, you can't get an appreciation for how fast these guys skate on TV. While our seats were amazing for their proximity to the bench, it did make it a bit difficult to watch the game. I've never wiggled around in a seat so much in my life...trying to see. But that didn't matter...I WAS THERE!
The Stars ended up breaking the Predators' 7 game winning streak, winning 3-1. Goals were very weird; I really only saw one of them occur. The first goal came in the 2nd period, by Trevor Daley, just kind of happened all the sudden. The Stars fan we sat next to didn't realize it had happened either. Ha. The Preds tied it 1-1 by the end of the 2nd. In the third, the Stars scored 2 back-to-back goals off some horrible turnovers by the Preds. The goals were scored by Loui Eriksson and Matt Niskanen.
Also odd were penalties and stoppage of play. I guess being directly behind the glass, we couldn't hear the whistle. We'd just see a player head off to the penalty box across the ice.
Here's just a few photos of warm up and of my favorite players. I took as many as I could during media time-outs, but I didn't want to watch the game through my phone during play; by the end of the game, my battery was 10%. LOL (Click on the photos to see them big.)
Brenden Morrow (10; Team Captain), Stephen Robidas (3), and Kari Lehtonen (32; recently acquired during mid-season waivers):
Steve Ott (29):
Jamie Benn (14; 5th highest scoring rookie in the NHL):
Kari Lehtonen (32):
If you wanna see the rest that I spruced up, head to my gallery.
Also next to us was a couple...they actually had seats on the rail. I wanted to try to get an autograph or 20 after the game. I had brought a pen but lost it, so I asked the lady if she had one and told her why. She offered to get the autograph for me, and as attractive as she was, she would stand a MUCH better chance of getting them than I would. Kids and hot chicks...that's how you get things from athletes. I eyed Marty Turco, the long time goalie of the Stars (but he sat out this game) and motioned to see if he'd sign the program I handed her. He nodded. I wanted to get several and asked as they left the arena, but no one stopped. But I'm pretty pleased with what I got:
I have this bittersweet problem where when I go to things like this--so rare because of where I live--I get a little star struck. I think how amazing it would be to have the resources to do this all the time; or even have a job where I could be around the team. Heck, I even envied the bench-squeegee guy. I know it looks more glamorous on the outside though, and I've got a pretty good deal going here, but it sure was one of the highlighted experiences I've had. I'll end this post by repeating what I said in one of my tweets:
considering im not married this is the most epic night of my life!