It was a few years ago that I went to my first NHL hockey game. It was the Nashville Predators in a home game and I didn’t think much would entertain me. I mean, I had been to minor league hockey games and for me they weren’t anything to clear your calendar for.
But this one? It was different. I often compare all sports to football, because football is the pinnacle of fan excitement and all that. Each football game can be fun to watch so that’s why hockey was always inferior (in my world). In football, the energy of the fans kind of goes up and down play by play. There could be a lot of excitement in the first quarter, but it sputters out by the 3rd. Or the second half is better than the first but then one team wins by 2 touchdowns, not easy to come back from that with only a few minutes to go, so the crowd loses energy.
Playoff hockey? It’s a whole new world. The Preds game I attended was something I wouldn’t have believed unless I was there. From the first puck drop, to the final second, the energy was in a steady climb and didn’t reach the peak until that final buzzer. Honestly, I have never attended any game that felt like that– and I went to Florida State in the late 90s when football was everything. Instead of fireworks of energy and excitement (like football games can be), the hockey game was a steady burn that built and built and built and erupted into a forest fire by the end of the game.
It’s also fascinating to watch what these hockey players can do with a stick and a puck. Precision. Power. Speed. It’s almost magic.
I say all that to set up this clip. In a game over the weekend, there was a crazy few seconds as the third period came to an end. The team that was winning with just a few seconds left held on to the victory, but it wasn’t without incredible drama. Take a look at the shot block that saved the game for the New York Islanders.
Crazy, right? Now watch it again and, while the save was amazing, also it’s important to marvel at the shot! This guy avoids defense with a graceful pirouette 360 spin and still manages to hold on to the puck, and even shoot it in the right direction… WHAT??? If that shot turned into a score, it might have been recorded as one of the best goals in NHL history.
As it is, it might go down as one of the best blocks in NHL history… and it’s not even by a goalie! Amazing stuff.
Did you watch that game? What did you think of the clip of the player saving the game for his team? Comment below, and thanks for stopping by…
-Out of the Wilderness