Monday, November 9, 2009

Things that make me go hmm...

  • It was a great way to spend a few hours on the ice with the Kelowna Rockets as the organization held their fan skate Sunday afternoon at Prospera Place. The turnout was great as the 'fans of tomorrow' had a chance to skate and receive autographs from their favourite Rockets players. I too took to the ice with my son Connell and took a picture with his two favourite Rockets - Shane McColgan and Kyle St. Denis.
  • When I asked Connell why he likes McColgan and St. Denis he just shrugged his shoulders and couldn't give me an answer. Kids!
  • It was great to see kids hovering around injured goaltender Mark Guggenberger. Gugg's is a popular guy even if he hasn't played a game yet. Guggenberger is great with the kids which not only increases his popularity with the little ones, but with the parents too.
  • I spoke to Curt Gogol who assured me his knuckle/finger wasn't broken in Saturdays fight. But is it sore? Oh ya!
  • I don't know which pair of hands look worse, Gogol's or Callahan's?
  • I thought I'd introduce my son to Rockets captain Lucas Bloodoff. Lucas came through wonderfully for me. He told Connell, "I eat my vegetables, I love to read and I follow all the rules". To a parent of a 6 year-old it was music to my ears. Well done Captain Bloodoff.
  • It was nice to see the coaching staff out for Sunday's skate. It may have something to do with Ryan Huska and Dan Lambert having younger children who are as eager as any to skate with the team they usually watch from the stands.
  • Which Rocket is gaining in popularity? Cody Chikie. The kids love him.
  • I was wearing my goalie skates which got a chuckle from coach Huska. They are old school. One parent skated by me and said, "I should have known you were a goalie". Something tells me that wasn't a compliment.
  • All that was required in taking part in the skate was a donation of a non-perishable food item for the Kelowna Food Bank. After the skate there was free hot chocolate for everyone. The Rockets organization always put on a first class show. Even what some would consider a lower profile 'fan skate', it receives the attention it deserves.
  • My son asked me why Rocky the Raccoon wasn't at Sunday's skate. My answer. "He has the flu".
  • It was pointed out the other day that with the H1 N1 paranoia going on do Western Hockey League players, specifically the Rockets, adhere from tapping a fans hand when they skate off the ice after the pre-game warm-up or after the game ends? While those little hands rub against the glove of the player, does that player than use his glove to wipe away sweat from his eyes or nose? I'm just asking.
  • To clarify, the Chilliwack Bruins shouldn't be classified with the Calgary Flames and Abbotsford Heat when it comes to the H1 N1 controversy. The Bruins were using vaccine that would have otherwise been thrown away. My poll may have been misleading to some thinking that the Bruins 'jumped the cue' to get their flu shots, when that wasn't the case.
  • I thought it was cool to see Chilliwack Bruins head coach Marc Habscheid mingling with fans prior to Friday night's warm-up. Habscheid could hide in the Bruins dressing room waiting for the puck to be dropped before making his presence known in the building, but he was making small talk with several fans that came by to say hello. It's a small gesture by Habscheid, but the hockey fans in the community appreciate the stamp he made on the franchise.
  • Are you wondering how Bruins sniper Ryan Howse would respond to the defensive mindset of Habscheid when he took over the reins in Chilliwack? Howse appears to have bought in if you look at the statistics. Howse has 12 goals in 19 games this season after scoring 10 times in 19 games on season ago. Maybe this is the most important stat. Howse is a -2 this season after a minus 11 after 19 games one season ago. (these stats were prior to this weekend).
  • It was nice to hear Joe Kenward on Thursday night's Canucks radio broadcast. Kenward was calling the play-by-play when the Canucks faced off against the Minnesota Wild. What a strange week for Kenward though. He calls a Western Hockey League game for Shaw in Saskatoon between the Blades and Swift Current Broncos and then quickly catches a flight and is in the broadcast booth in 'Minny' calling an NHL game at Xcel Energy Center the following night. Who does he think he is, Donald Trump?
  • The Saskatchewan Roughriders are hosting the Western final for the first time since 1976. I was 8 years-old back then. 'We' were do. As my Saskatchewan born cousin in Williams Lake BC says, "I haven't stopped crying for joy since Saturday's victory".
  • Working Saturday's game and calling Wednesday afternoon's matinee affair against the Rebels means one thing - a day off today and tomorrow. Life is good.

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