I just sorted through some of the shots from my Bahston experience on Friday and figured I would share here on the blog. No game shots - I was too far away and the little point-and-shoot camera I brought was too terrible to get them with any clarity - but there is enough for you to get a little idea of what it was like. But before I get to them, I just want to throw out some quick outdoor game/Winter Classic observations:
*I went to Buffalo in 2008 and Chicago in 2009 and had great times at both but this BU/BC game at Fenway was definitely my favourite.
*College bands are fun and they are so, so, soooooo much better than the retread canned music that deafeningly thunders around NHL arenas. The bands have personality and they can be quite good ... all except for Northeastern's, who was out of tune and sucked.
*Having the game at night makes it colder, but a bit cooler. Seeing the snow coming down from the night sky is much better than the drab grey clouds that were the backdrops for the other outdoor games.
*Then again, at night there were no cool flyovers by helicopters, Super Hornets or stealth bombers.
*When players stopped hard, you could clearly see the snow kick up 10, 15 feet into the air. It was really quite trippy.
*The players weren't tripping much, literally; having the rink up for longer clearly paid off as there were no stoppages that I noticed due to the quality of the ice. It was a world away from the Buffalo experience where it felt like a football game with the constant stoppages.
*Vendors walked the crowd slinging soup and hot chocolate and they were making a killing as everyone sought to combat the chill.
*Unlike the pro game on the Fenway rink a week prior, this entire game had good action - not just a good ending. And the ticket cost was a quarter that of the NHL's Winter Classic. Talk about more bang for your buck ...
Ok, onto the photos. Walking up to the ballpark, I had to take a shot to prove that the Sawx actually won multiple championships ... once upon a time, before the 2004 Yankee meltdown allowed the curse to be kicked (after that, who cares? even the Boston fans I know weren't as impressed with '07):
When I finally got inside it was the first period of the girls' game. The crowd, if you can call it that, was sparse (to say the least) with a few hundred people around the stadium, more walking around and most not even arriving until just before the boys' game:
The view of the ice from my seat between the first and second periods of the Northeastern/UNH game:
I walked up to try to get into the seats above the Green Monster but security wasn't having it. The did let me hang over the railing to attempt to get a picture of it though ... and down on the ground the bands from all four participating schools were getting together to play for a bit between games:
Brian Leetch was the honorary captain of BC, Mike Eruzione was the honorary captain of BU and both teams had a pair of assistant captains - Travis Roy was one of BU's, which was a really classy move. That's Leetch walking to the rink below:
A giant American flag was draped over the Green Monster with troops lined up along it's base as the national anthem was sung. It's snowing and completely mind blowing:
Taken as two of the three BU netminders went down to the locker room between periods, you can see the awesome throwback sweaters and Kieran Millan's awesome pads (B on one, U on the other):
The snow kept coming and going throughout the game, at times getting heavy:
The final score after a really good hockey game:
And, finally, the post-game handshakes:
While I still think that having the Rangers in an outdoor game would be folly - they aren't particularly entertaining most of the time and, frankly, I want to go and enjoy the experience rather than yell at Brashear and Redden - there is no way in the world I would miss it, not after three straight successes under the open sky.