31W, no. 8; newsletter by b.n.)
And the newsletter starts now: You know, Harris told me on Monday just after the game “If I don't have the newsletter by Wednesday at 8am then I am going to open with the following quote ...” and he went on to repeat an actual quote that one would believe that I would not want him to open with.
It turned out to be a busy week and Wednesday afternoon rolled around and I thought to myself, “Self, I wonder if Harris posted the newsletter?” But he did not. I may or may not have spoken with him later in the week and maybe I sent him a text or an email, but somewhere between the Devils game on Thursday night and the Nets game on Saturday night, I realized, “Oh s&*%, I forgot to write the newsletter.” I checked the site and nope, it still hadn't been posted with the promised, inflammatory quote at the start. (Though I did get some pissed-off emails from Harris.)
So here, without further ado, (and to ensure that Harris will never post the aforementioned quote by #67) is the newsletter ... Our final game of the regular season found us against the Phantoms. There was much pre-game hype for this meeting — just a notch below the hype for the Patriots-Colts game (which was being called Super Bowl XLII.5 just the day before). Anyway, going into the game it was thought that the two teams were fighting for their Playoff lives. If the Phantoms lost, they would definitely be out; If the Pirates lost, then there was some complicated scenario where if they lost by six goals (but scored three) and the Geriatrics won by less than four goals (and the Blackhawks game was a forfeit), then the Pirates would be out.
As the game got underway it was a closely fought affair. Wildman scored (assist LeMatty) to give the Pirates the 1-0 lead. Meanwhile, Scott LeMatty, who is still recovering from some bizarre eye injury, was harping on the bench about the fact that the Pirates should have been wearing white (we were in black and the Phantoms wore red, which seemed fine to me). At the time this seemed strange, but later in the 1st period when LeMatty's clearing pass out of our zone went right to the tape of a Phantom all alone on the point, it all became clear: Not only is Scott still recovering from his surgery but he is also color blind to boot! That mishap knotted the game at 1-1, but that did not slow LeMatty down. Later in the period he battled hard for a puck behind the net and passed it to a wide-open #67 who had a wide-open net to shoot at! (Of course, #67 somehow missed the open net and LeMatty had to go back to work and continue to battle for the puck. He did, eventually, get it back to #67 and this time he put it home to give the Pirates the 2-1 lead at the break.)
The tight play continued into the final period with the only score being a shot from just over the blueline from Brooks that snuck past the goalie to ice the game with 5:00-minutes on the clock. Although the game, for all intent-and-purpose was over, the excitement didn't end until the final whistle when some dude on the Phantoms took a two-handed swing into a crowd in front of the Pirate net. It was so obvious that LeMatty, who as we stated earlier is half-blind and color-blind, realized that it was an attack on a fellow Pirate player and went into a screaming tirade on the bench — and yes, the “d”-word that Mike immortalized a few games back was uttered repeatedly). But alas, that is hockey. At least we got some sort of acknowledgment after the game from the League that they realize the Phantom guy was out of line. (Of course they're not acting on it, but they did realize it.)
And the opening line that should have graced this newsletter? Well I will leave that to Harris.
date of game: 11.05.07
1) BOBBY CURRAO
For a subbing effort that resulted in great plays (and numerous pre-game emails).
2) BRIAN NEWCOMB
For the GWG.
3) BOB BROOKS
For the final tally that took the wind from the sails of the Phantoms.