I am an ECHL Hockey Fan and the Mallards are my team. Tonight I watched the last Quad City Mallards game and was filled with emotion. They have given us so much, and its not all about winning.
The franchise owner has decided to dissolve the team for financial reasons. Whatever the reason its a punch in the gut.
The Mallards are so much more than a hockey team. They made us look forward to Winter weekends. They filled us with hope. Every game. They make us yell and cheer and just plain have a blast.
I love hockey. I went to my first game about 5 years ago… one period and I was hooked. Forever. The energy, the passion, the talent and yes the fights. Filled with with excitement every weekend.
This team has been part of our landscape for over 20 years, I am sad to see them go. Did we have standing room only crowds? Nope, But we did have family Fridays, $2 beer and hot dogs. We have hot dog races on the ice, we have bubble battles, we have dance offs ,we have kiss cams and couples of the game, and we have fun. Big fun. in the entertainment genre the Mallards never disappoint. No we don’t always win, but when we do….woo wee!
But isn’t that what we are supposed to do? Love them good or bad.. All in.
Tonight was the perfect send off for our current team, the names float in an out of the jerseys some we keep longer than others, some mean more to our hearts than others. We marvel as they take hit after hit and sometimes crawl off the ice only to appear in the next game seemingly unscathed. I have seen pucks to the neck and fights that I wish went on longer. I have rejoiced when they send an opposing player to the penalty box or better yet out of the game. I have yelled and screamed at unfair calls and loved every win.
Hockey is an acquired taste, my first game I was an observer, the third game I had a cowbell, tonight a jersey. I have progressed into a full blown hockey fan. I share the games with my family and one by one we have come into the fold. Tonight, my youngest granddaughter was ringing the cowbell and enjoying the goals, my grandsons were yelling along with their sister who is usually very reserved. She screamed her heart out. And me, vocal as usual. No holding back, our entire family.
This is what hockey does, it unleashes us, it allows us to believe, it allow us to release. With a beer and hot dog on a Friday/Saturday night. It’s the best.
So proud. Thank you for the fun, thank you for the memories. You are the best. Win or lose.
Until Next Time,