Robertson Cup Finals: Someone Always Left Behind

Tonight was the final game of the NAHL Robertson Cup, between the host team Texas Tornado, and the St. Louis Bandits.  The weird thing about this particular game was, no matter the outcome, the Bandits were over.  The team is folding, but I don’t have a lot of information beyond that.

I would like to tell you that St. Louis skated off victorious, but – spoiler alert that I’ve already spoiled – they did not.  Texas scored on a weird rebound and broken coverage in overtime, making the local fans ecstatic, and leaving the Bandits empty.

I’ll let the photos tell the tale.  First, the mustaches.

  

Don’t let the Stars player fool you.  He’s still a junior.  Yeah, right.

ACTION!

Again, do they need the body suits?

My favorite part of this is the kid behind the mascot whaling away.  So much carnage. So much fluffy carnage.

Back to the game.

The guy on the ice is number 8, Lucas Whelan.  He blocked a shot in the last seconds of the final period, and had to be helped off the ice.  He couldn’t put any weight on his leg after that.  I was surprised that he came back for overtime.  Yes, hockey players are tough, but this was a brutal block.  I was surprised he didn’t break his ankle.

As I said, the game went to overtime, and the Tornado took advantage of a rebound that didn’t go the way the goalie expected, and some blown coverage.  Here is your game winner.

That was it for the Bandits.  So here is what I would call the agony and ecstasy of a finals.

The winning coaches consoling the losing goalie.

There are no white gloves with this trophy.

Handshakes.

This might surprise you, but in the NAHL, they don’t boo the commissioner like he committed a crime against humanity.

  

Think that’s rough?  How about watching the winning team hoist the cup?

Most of the Bandits left the ice at this point.  Most of them.

To me, this picture just says it all.

The captain of the Tornado came over to talk with that last player, the captain for the Bandits.

And that does it for the NAHL season.

And that does it for me for live hockey games this year.  It was a great time, seeing so many places, and some new teams.  It’s one of the best parts of hockey for me.  Next season, as things in my life change, I probably won’t get to see as many games on the road.  But you never know, maybe something will make that happen.

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