Thursday, 4 April 2013

Bro, do you even play the game?

A common question when someone disagrees with another persons opinion on hockey.  As in, if you've never strapped on skates and been concussed you're opinion doesn't matter and has no value.  Well yeah bro, I do.

I started playing hockey just before my oldest son was born, actually the day of a game our doctor said the ball was rolling for him to show up, so being the dutiful husband I am, I looked at my lady, knowing my team needed me, and said "I'll bring my cell phone to the bench in case you need anything"

Yes, we took the bus to the hospital at delivery time. Parking downtown's expensive.
My brother-in-laws mother was starting an adult beginners league and I was getting an itch to play hockey (and hey, exercise is a bonus) and invited us to join.  It was a family affair, with my sister, and brother on my team.
Me, right before my first ever hockey game.  No, I did not know  that was a road hockey stick.
It was a summer of truly awful hockey.  Then came the playoffs.  one weekend, 4 games.  Now standard fare for a tournament, but not something an out of shape beginner was prepared for.  1 game Friday night, stayed up way too late, early AM game next morning, no sleep, no breakfast led to a pretty cranky Adam.  I yelled at a little kid. Sunday: We made it to the championship game. one problem, we only had 8 players.  "How can you skip the finals!" I yelled, knowing we're doomed.  But the game must go on.  it was a close affair, and halfway through the second period there was a scuffle in front of the net and my brother went down.  We thought he had a concussion, as he had trouble getting to his feet as was pretty incoherent.  My sister took him to the change room and we were down to a 6 person bench for half the game.  Only 1 person resting at a time can spell danger, but do you believe in miracles?  I do now because we came back to win that game and become the first ever Adult Rookie League CHAMPIONS!

Oh the sweet taste of victory.  We assembled a great team for the winter season and dreamed of repeating. 

We didn't.  We were terrible.  We came in last.

But the next summer! Oh what a summer that was.  We went undefeated for 15 games including playoffs and we were CHAMPIONS! once again.
Even sweeter was beating my sister.
3 seasons, two championships, thats the way to do it.  Not wanting to drive 100km round trip for hockey anymore, I retired from the ARL a two time champion. Next league to dominate was the closer to home Genesis Hockey League.  Drafted to the Canucks we had a superstar in net and my big presence on the blue line what could go wrong?

We also had a tank.

Everything.  First place and unstoppable and post-Christmas we couldn't bribe our way to a win.  Yet another last place finish.

No problem, it's a pattern, season 2 in virgil will be the year.

Drafted to play for the Blackhawks that year we were doing well, the trade deadline came and went and no problem, we kept on going.  Then I got an e-mail.

A late trade had to be done.  Bad news for me:

I'm in the back on the far right. hiding in shame of the crest.

Well, I'll be fine, I was asked for specifically, so thats a boost to the ego.  Besides, this was the year to break the curse right?  Kinda.  My team won the championship.  Just...not my current team. The Blackhawks would win the championship and the Canadiens?  Last place.  Did I trade trophies for travel?

Season 3.  With my wife on my team we're playing for the Rangers and I like the look of our team.  We're all having a good time, despite sucking it up.  Seriously.  Look at this record.
That 5-0 win?  The goalie put on pads for the first time ever.
So, yup.  Same old same old. But that didn't matter, this was a great team, and there was never a sour face the entire time.  But three new additions and we were re-born after the Christmas break.

Yeah, complete 180
We were on fire, and unbeatable.  Still dead last heading into the playoffs, so we had to play the #1, #2, and #3 place teams.  We lost game 1 2-0.  But we won the next two games and won a spot in the championship game.  A chance for revenge against the team that beat us 2-0.

Awesome right?  Except one thing: We were out of town for Easter that weekend. I knew this was coming so my goal was to help get my team into the finals.  Lady scored 3 goals in the final two games and her line was on fire.  Me?  I directly led to all 3 goals against us in the playoffs. However, our mission was accomplished.  All we could do is drive away and hope.

Saturday came and went and what did we wake up to Easter Sunday?

Oh yeah.  Technically a Champion once again. 


  1. Couldn't you have posted the picture of me getting the game puck for being awesome?

  2. No, because thats not me in my CHAMPIONS shirt.

  3. plus i look damn good in that picture

  4. really, you had to use that picture... whatever, we were the champions!