Thursday, February 27, 2020

Regular Season Debut

The best possible thing that can happen in a hockey game is a team losing their goalie, their backup goalie, and necessitating the activation of an emergency backup goalie. Every team in the NHL is required to grant entrance to the arena to a designated person with typically amateur goalie experience who -- in the highly unlikely event that either team has no viable players to tend goal -- will be called upon in times of great duress to suit up and play the game of hockey. This past weekend, such a hero had their moment in the sun: David Ayres, a 42-year-old who drives Zamboni machines in Mattamy Athletic Centre in Toronto, was designated the goalie of the Carolina Hurricanes in their 6-3 win over the Toronto Maple Leaves, making eight saves in the process and becoming the oldest person in the history of the NHL to win a regular season debut. Today, NHL general managers are gathering for their annual meetings, and the emergency backup system may be up for discussion. Unless their decision is "pre-emptively cutting a deal with a major studio for the inevitable film rights," any change would be a colossal error.

-- Walt Hickey, "NumLock News" 27 February 2020, citing Tom Gulitti,

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