Hockey. Is. Back.
Well, sort of.
While we have all been pining for the NHL to return to our TVs and arenas, the people lucky enough to be near CHL teams have been watching hockey, as their season has already started. The rest of us have been doing unspeakable things to watch hockey this week. For me, that meant getting up at 7AM for training camp. And watching a game in St. Louis.
I like the arena in St. Louis. I hadn’t been to Scottrade since it was the Savvis. But more important, it was time to pay outrageous money for a game that was closer to the minors than the NHL. Honestly, paying over $70 for upper deck tickets to a game where the third line of an NHL team is the first line for the night is not outrageous, it’s thievery. With the arena less than half full (maybe a third? Maybe?), lowering prices for preseason games could garner the NHL a few more fans in the seats, but could also bring in some new fans as well. But this isn’t the way of the NHL.
And yet it was the first hockey of the season, so I was happy to be there.
(click anything to make it bigger)
The excitement for the fans was centered around the first game of Jaroslav Halak as a Blue:
Talking over the penalty kill (which looked decent):
Halak played the entire game, while Trevor Cann subbed in for Peter Budaj. It’s the preseason, so what do you want?
It wouldn’t be a minor league game without a fight.
Some people still wanted to go:
A few ejections later, the Avalanche won. Or the Lake Erie Monsters won. You know. Preseason. Don’t write too much into it.