Monday, February 9, 2009


Great moments... are born from great opportunity. And that's what you have here, tonight, boys. That's what you've earned here tonight. One game. If we played 'em ten times, they might win nine. But not this game. Not tonight. Tonight, we skate with them. Tonight, we stay with them. And we shut them down because we can! Tonight, WE are the greatest hockey team in the world. You were born to be hockey players. Every one of you. And you were meant to be here tonight. This is your time. Their time is done. It's over. I'm sick and tired of hearing about what a great hockey team the Soviets have. Screw 'em. This is your time. Now go out there and take it. - Herb Brooks

I wanted to start this blog off with a quote from SlapShot to get the hockey themed blog rolling, but really there are no quotes that I could put up. I think you understand.

Tonight was my first hockey game. I am spent. After hustling home from work, Mike York picked me up and we drove to Penrith, a good hour and ten minute drive, for our first inline hockey game. They loved that I carried all my equipment in the same cardboard box it was sent in. Hey I don't have a hockey bag, gotta make due. I think Curt York has an extra bag floating around somewhere.

I thought I might look like Happy Gilmore on ice.

So if you said I was in pain, I'd say that was an understatement. Tonight reminded me of 1995-1997 when I was playing for KHS and coach Jim Jimaki would break out his whistle with about 30 minutes left in practice. He then proceeded to push the team harder than most of us probably have ever been pushed. I can picture Kyle Brown laying on the ice in exhaustion, or Rich Gallup throwing up over the boards. We were probably in the best shape of our lives then. Maybe I was anyway. I do remember thinking how slow time moved when we were skating from red line to red line.

Jimaki (circled) knew how to run a practice.

So that brings me to tonight. I haven't been on skates of anykind since the winter of 2004! 5 years in total. I was a bit nervous because the guys I some of the guys on the court tonight play for the Australia National Team.

I wore #96, not exactly #99 like the Great One.

My first shift I went out there and busted my tail as hard as I could for a couple minutes. Then when I had my first line change, I sat down and realized I just used all my energy for the night. We still had four 12 minute periods to go. I can't really say my heart has ever beat faster. I thought I was dying. Three years on cruise ships, 2 years traveling around, and I just didn't make much time for the gym. Tonight I paid for it.
I think the other guys were having a good laugh at my red face, but giving encouragement. We were in the lead the whole game, so there wasn't a whole lot of pressure. The guys we played against were good, but they didn't really have a knack for the net. They also were kind of in awe of the helmet I wore. I had my only helmet I ever wore sent over. I believe I got it for Christmas in 1988 or 1989. It is nasty. It is falling apart, beat up, maybe a little moldy, but a darn fine helmet.

Messier knows what I'm talking about with the old school helmet.

In the fourth period, I did score four goals in a two shift span. Natural hat trick right? So it was good to tuck a few in and get some high fives. Oh its a 3 on 3 format with two goalies who rotate sides. We won 18-7.

Not a bad deal for the league either. $150 for 13 weeks. Can't beat that really.

On a sad note, I'm sure you've heard of the wild bush fires happening in Victoria, Australia right now. It really is tragic how many people have lost their lives. It is hard to imagine what people are going through right now down there as some communities have been completely destroyed. I want to let everyone know that I am not located anywhere near the fires so I am safe here in Sydney. It is an amazing country, while the fires still burn, there are floods taking lives and homes up in the north.

Well I'm off to bed. Had another good day at work. I took 30 calls today at work, better than my 20 on Friday. Talk to you all soon.

Love Ryan
Old time Hockey!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good post ryan! Glad you got out and about on your um inlines and had some fun um doing whatever that is called. (lol)
(i'm joshin ya you know...)