The Hat Trick is very happy that the NHL regular season begins in approximately 20 days. On Saturday, October 4, 2008 the NHL season begins with a game between the Tampa Bay Lightening and the New York Rangers in Prague, Czech Republic and the Pittsburgh, Penguins and the Ottawa Senators in Stockholm, Sweden. The same two teams will play each other again the next day, switching who is the home team and who is the visiting team.
Following a short break the regular season really gets down to business on Thursday, October 9 with four games including the Stanley Cup Champion Detroit Red Wings hosting the Toronto Maple Leafs at the “JLA” and a great match-up between two Original Six teams. For my readers who are not as well versed in all things Red Wings, the “JLA” stands for Joe Louis Arena, the home of the Red Wings and named after the famous boxer Joe Louis who was from Detroit.
Two highlights from the 2008-2009 schedule that the Hat Trick is particularly excited about is the games on January 1 and January 31, 2009. The New Year’s Day game is between the Red Wings and the Chicago Blackhawks and will take place outside in Wrigley Field, home of baseball’s Chicago Cubs. At this juncture the Hat Trick and Mrs. Hat Trick are scheduled to attend…even more special as Mrs. Hat Trick is from Chicago and a huge Cubs fan, having lived near Wrigley Field during her time in Chicago. This will be particularly helpful in finding watering holes to warm up before and after the game! The January 31 game is also exciting, at least for the Hat Trick, because it is the first time the Red Wings will return to Washington, DC to play the Washington Capitals in quite a few years. Even better is the timing of the game…a Saturday game with a 12:30 PM start. The Hat Trick is already making plans for that game…
Needless to say, the Hat Trick is pretty excited about the upcoming NHL season as well as the return of football and playoff baseball. From a sports standpoint, the Hat Trick’s favorite season is the fall because of the convergence of these three sports and the Hat Trick’s wide screen TV is put to the test during this time!