That's the main rink inside the beautiful Prospera Centre in Chilliwack. Unfortunately, the Bulldogs won't be playing in this rink for today's season opener against the Vees, (1-0-0-0 after an 11-2 demolition of the Surrey Eagles last night) as they will instead be playing on the secondary ice sheet, also known as the community rink. The Bulldogs will be playing in the big rink tomorrow though. It seems only fair that each team get a game in each rink - last year the Bulldogs were really lucky (or maybe just the broadcaster was) as they got both games in the big rink. That certainly made up for their appearance at the inaugural Showcase in 2012 when the Bulldogs played BOTH of their games in the secondary rink. Every team except the Capitals gets at least one game in the main rink, it's nice to see the league spread the chance around, not that the scouts wont be all over the place hanging from the rafters in both rinks!
Those two pictures give a bit of an idea as to the set up in the community rink.
In the end it doesn't really matter, both rinks have the same ice sheet dimensions and the nets are the same size! I think the Bulldogs would play hallway hockey if it got them a win, as they have yet to win a game at the Showcase over the last two editions, going 0-3-0-1.
That's all irrelevant and in the past though - today is about a new beginning and a fresh slate. Nothing like the excitement of a new season! I'm sure there will be plenty of butterflies to go around from rookies to vets. It's important to just be ready to play, and to not try to do too much. Just play your game, push the pace, and let the puck bounce how it may. As important as it is to get off to a good start to a season as the Bulldogs found out last year, it's a marathon not a sprint.
The new season of Pacific Chevrolet Bulldogs Hockey kicks off this afternoon on 93.3 The Peak FM with the pregame show at 3:15 and the play-by-play to follow at 3:30 with myself and Bulldogs Public Address Announcer Charles Mealey calling all the action and providing the colour, analysis and statistics.
If you aren't in listening range of 93.3 The Peak FM you can listen/watch the game by:
Listening Live on your computer: www.933thepeak.com
Listening Live on your SmartPhone : www.tunein.com/mobile/
Watching Live on your computer/SmartPhone www.fasthockey.com
Today's 2nd Intermission feature guest is BCHL Comissioner John Grisdale, talking about the showcase and all things BCHL.
Lets drop the puck already!