Who cares about points and standings? We have in-game entertainment!
The back-to-back games against Montreal and Pittsburgh didn’t leave me much time to enter any comments about the Flyers’ game presentation crew. These guys do an incredible job crafting videos and in-game moments to get the crowd going.
Like showing video of the Phillies leading the Dodgers in the first inning, prompting a massive cheer from the fans. That cheer was then surpassed by the sarcastic celebration of the New York Giants trailing . . . well, does it really matter who the Giants were trailing?
The 2008-09 home opener video featured an amazing mash-up of moments from the 2007-08 season. It may not be the epic from last year’s version, based on the summer action flick 300. But on Monday night, it was preceded by a video that relived highlights from Spectrum history. That reminiscing perfectly complemented this video, which relives the highlights from last year’s magnificent journey.
But the best part of the game presentation was the Mites on Ice. I always enjoy watching youth hockey because it’s something we don’t get as much exposure to here in the US, and the kids just have so much fun out there. This particular Mites was extra-special.
Kerry Fraser, who was among the officials Monday night, dropped the puck and served as the on-ice official for the game instead of the usual Flyers staffer. As it turns out, Fraser’s grandson plays for the Voorhees Mini-mites and took the opening face-off. I enjoyed seeing Fraser without the helmet again, and it was fun to watch him without being totally annoyed by his calls against the Flyers for a change.
The Mite of the Night was a young boy who brought something special for his equipment that evening. Someone – probably a parent – had used packing tape to attached a Phillies cap to the boy’s hockey helment. Flyers announcer Lou Nolan could hardly make it through a sentence about the kid without laughing.
And even the hardened Flyer fans let out a cheer when one boy finally scored, despite the hoardes of youngsters falling in piles around him.
You see, Flyers fans are really just big softees underneath it all. Well, at least until the Dallas Cowboys are in town.