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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hockey in July

Normally at this time of the year, the hockey blog is on vacation. Between the end of the professional season in mid-June and the early July camps for prospects, the next big event is usually the September training camps.

A few items may be newsworthy of course. Today, for example, the Chicago Wolves said they’d agreed to a deal with Brian Sipotz, a native of South Bend, IN.

Meanwhile the Chicago Blackhawks and the NHL dragged some boards out into Wrigley Field yesterday and talked about the outdoor game planned for New Year’s Day, 2009. As has been mentioned in several articles, how long has it been since hockey made the front of the sports pages in this town? IN JULY?

Sipotz had the leading +/- for players in the AHL regular season in 2007.

The Blackhawks President, John McDonough, the former President of the Chicago Cubs, returned to Wrigley for the first time since he joined the Hawks. The players were wandering around talking about what it would be like to play outdoors. They used the word “fun.” Tickets will probably be priced, according to a story in the Chicago Sun-Times, at $250.00 each and will be hard to get anyway.

Sipotz has played for the Wolves for several seasons. He isn’t an Atlanta prospect. His contract is owned by the Wolves.

In a 2006 game played at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, WI, 40,890 attended. The game held on New Year’s Day 2008 attracted 71,217 to Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo, NY. “At Lambeau, the ice got chopped up real fast, and if it snows, it’ll be even worse, “ Hawk winger Adam Burish told the Sun-Times. “But who cares? It’s the experience.”

At a meeting of the Chicago Wolves Booster Club yesterday, team representatives had no news about a replacement for John Anderson, the four-time championship coach who is now in Atlanta.

“We’ll play like we’re young boys,” Denis Savard told the Sun-Times. “It’s the fun of a lifetime.”

The Wolves reps told the Booster Club Tuesday the summer was the busiest time of the year for the sales staff. Until the Hawks started generating news, it was the quietest period of the year for the hockey blog.

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