10/12 EDMONTON 6, sharks 4
As quick as tonight happened, I hope it just as quickly goes away.
First off, Rexall Place, despite being old, is in pretty good shape. It's a white circle, with ridges on the outside, pretty ordinary. The inside shows the age of the building. The concourses are narrow, creating sardine like areas at popular times like intermission and after the games. It is however, nice and updated, with flat screens over every concession, modern concessions with foods like chicken, onion rings, and riblets, and Molson Canadian on tap at every stand.
Once in the seats, it is amazing to see how small the building really is. With the upper levels, the max capacity is only around the bottom of 17,000, but yet the noise levels of the place would make you think there are 5 or 6 thousand more in there. The multiple championship banners hang at one end, over a sign on the rafters that reminds you that "You're in Oil Country" and the other end has the five that have their numbers retired by the copper and blue.
The game itself had several ups and downs for both teams, with the ups ending for the hometown boys. The game started in a playoff like atmosphere, from the noise level to the 17,000 strong singing the national anthem of Canada (gives me chills thinking about it now, truly a moment I will never forget). From the drop of the puck, the Oilers fed off the crowd, and it gave them a huge jump that resulted in an early goal for Edmonton. A few penalties later, and the game was tied at 1. Cheechoo got his second a couple minutes later, and the first period ended 2-1 SJ. The second began where the first left off, with Cheech getting his third of the night, a natural hat trick. A fourth Sharks goal seemed to put the game out of reach, but that's when the Oilers began to play.
A Joffrey Lupul rebound woke Rexall up, as there was much more to come following the goal. Despite trailing 4-2 at the 2nd intermission, the Oilers were ready to make history. Shortly into the 3rd, the Oilers had a power play opportunity, a Jarrett Stoll slap shot that bounced off of Ryan Smyth's leg and in. 4-3. A few seconds later, and a Marc-Andre Bergeron shot tipped Smyth's stick and in. Game tied, 4-4. Shortly after that, Smyth picked up a rebound and threw it at the net, beating Nabokov glove hand, completing the hat trick in 2:01, the natural hat trick, and breaking Wayne Gretzky's record for quickest hat trick, previously at 2:18. An Ales Hemsky breakaway goal sealed the deal for the Oilers, and sent the Sharks packing for BC.
The Sharks, on paper, are a good team. Even good teams will lose 25-30 games in a season, but not many will lose games in this fashion. As a Sharks fan, I am all too familiar with the boys putting in a 40 minute effort, only to let their lead slip and eventually lose the game. Here's to tomorrow being a different game, in a different city, with a different, full game effort on the ice for the boys in teal. If that fails, SJ is one day away.
Go Sharks (don't ever stop going)
Funny, I thought I was in the country of Canada (not funny, I know)
Dass allotta bannerss
Center ice from my seat
Rexall is a pharmacy/drug store chain, this building should be called "The Pill"