How Do You Know It's Not Your Day?


Zombie Four, DFZ
Apr 28, 2012
Tonight was my second Penguins game of the season, and first with my mini-season ticket plan. Tix went on sale while I was on vacation (two days before Experience PRS 2012), and it turned out to be the easiest mini-plan buying event yet (this is the fourth year for me, I think). And we ended up six rows from the ice, which is the closest I've ever sat for an NHL game (although six rows at the new crappy arena is almost twice as far from the ice as six rows at the dearly departed Civic Arena).

To begin with, the Pens played a second consecutive sucky game. The Devils put on a puck possession clinic in the third period, but that's straying from the topic.

I sent my wife a text to record the game because a) I wanted to see how the fight four seconds into the game started (I know what it was from, but I had my head down for a sec and missed the actual start of the fight); and b) my daughter said she saw us on TV. I thought we might be close enough, and while it really makes no difference to me, I was kind of curious.

My wife didn't hit record. She watched the game. Just didn't record it for me. And it was on NBC Sports Network instead of the local RSN, so no replay of the game.

Could not find the hat I wanted to buy. I found it during their half-off sale at the beginning of the season, but the one I found was damaged. Haven't seen one since. My son finally found the James Neal jersey he wanted - but they didn't have his size.

Finally, the Pens have a charity raffle each game. Tix are $5, the prize is $4k - or in board terms, a new guitar. I don't buy a ticket every game, but once in a while I do. Tonight I did.

The winning number was 1432. That's 1-4-3-2.

I'm sort of a glass-half-full kinda guy, but I see that you got to watch live hockey with your son from the sixth row. That sounds like a great day to me.
Yup. 6th row hockey is great. You can feel the power of the guys on the ice as they skate by. I've always felt that hockey is a lot more exciting live than on TV, whereas football can be enjoyed either way.

Sounds like a good time to me, too.

Plus hat, pffft! Buy a PRS hat. is the was back in 1990 (Edit...actually '89 per my failing memory) daughter was about 5...we had 1st row behind the glass, since the Devils weren't selling too many tickets in those days. I wanted my kids to experience a hockey game, even though I was still a die hard (mashochistic) Rangers Fan.

So...about 1/2 way through the 3rd little girl bangs on the glass and gets the coach Herb Brooks' attention (he was the coach at the time...may he RIP...the "Miracle on Ice" was far back in the past already), he sees Kimberly innocently hitting the glass with her hand...makes a motion with his eyes to the coach....and they threw a puck (actually, gently tossed it) over the glass right into her hands!!! started a bit of a landslide of kids who saw what happened and tried to follow suit...but, they went right back to the game...tuned out the interference....and my daughter still has the puck she got at the game.

That's when you know that everything is going "right" for a change. Don't have too many other hockey stories...that was the last game I ever went to. Coincidentally, my first ever game was Rangers vs. Penguins...circa 1970 maybe???? It was a 0-0 double shutout. I thought that was normal for a hockey game until my friend told me otherwise. Had to wait until my 2nd game a year later to see what "the red light lit up" looked like.
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Oh, don't get me wrong - it wasn't a bad day by any stretch. When they announced the winning number, I had no idea what my ticket number was. This was the first time I've been within about 500 of the winning number - I just had visions of calling up my dealer...

Minus the outcome of the game, it was pretty cool to be that close for an NHL game. We've sat up against the glass for college and minor league games (and, of course, for my son's high school games when he played). The speed was cool to see, but what was better was being able to watch the players' eyes and reactions. There was an icing call where the Pens' Robert Bortuzzo came back to touch up the puck unchallenged, and he missed it and skated past it and had to go back to touch it. Down that close, you could see the linesman cracking up.

Doc - similar story. When my son was very young, his favorite player was Nikolai Khabibulin, then of the Phoenix Coyotes. We got tix to a Pens/Coyotes game and went down to the glass behind the Coyotes goal for warmups. One of the crew threw a puck over for my son (still has it). What's sad is that at the game last night, the ushers were chasing kids away from the glass during warmups.

For my money, hockey players are the best. Almost without fail, the ones I've met have been great guys. I was telling my son at the game about meeting Bobby Orr at a Pens game in the 80s. We also talked about when I met Maurice and Henri Richard at a card show - the Rocket was about 80 years old, and he still intimidated the hell out of me. When he'd first look at you, you had to catch your breath for a second because his eyes were so intense, it wasn't hard to imagine him going off. But the nicest guy. At another card show, I met Bobby Hull. They had a little platform for him to sit at and sign. When he came out, as he was walking towards the platform, he saw a kid in a wheelchair at a table. I have no idea if the kid was there to see him or not, but Hull went over and sat at the table with the kid and his family for 10-15 minutes before coming over to do the actual signing. My buddy said when he worked Mario Lemieux's golf tournament, Hull was the classiest athlete there, with Charles Barkley second.

So yeah, not a bad day. Not at all.