We’re all competitors and still want to win every game, but a little while ways down the road, after trading in the ‘competitive’ skates for their beer league counterparts, priorities begin to shift a bit.
1. The opponents’ average age to be the same or higher than your team’s.
We worked all day, we don’t work out nearly as much and bluntly, we’re mostly out of game shape. We’re here for some time with the boys and aren’t looking to chase around a bunch of 20 year-olds home for summer break.
2. Wives and girlfriends to instinctively understand that no matter if game time is 7:00pm or 10:40pm, we’ll be at the rink until 1:00am.
We love you, we truly do, but yes this is in fact way more enjoyable than cuddling on the couch and watching the bachelor with you. Please don’t make us answer that question, because you wont like the response. Whether we won a nail-biter or lost by 20, there will be more beers waiting in the locker room than Oktoberfest and yes, we will be here until we finish them.
3. To not have the last game of the night.
Remember back when you didn’t care what time the games were because you could just sleep in until 11 AM anyway? Yeah, those days are long gone. You’ve been doing this long enough to know the 10:30 PM game really starts at 11:15 and inevitably you’ll end up looking like George Costanza rocking a nap under the desk tomorrow morning.
4. The refs to find a happy medium between not wanting to be there and thinking they are officiating game 7 of the cup finals.
We’re going to complain about every hook, hack and off-side you do or don’t call all night because for a couple hours a night, we have the delusion that you are the sole reason our team isn’t undefeated. It’s not our diminishing skills that weren’t great to begin with, or the fact that we can barely skate up and down the rink twice without needing an oxygen tank. Until the final buzzer, we are going to be all over you and if you can take that in stride, we’ll be glad to toss you a couple beers, hang out and laugh in the parking lot later.
5. Hot showers at the rink.
This one is a no brainer. We’re going to shower when we get off the ice and hot water is great, post-game hypothermia isn’t. The only thing that should be cold after the game is the case of beer. Every beer-leaguer is accustomed to hearing “Water hot?” asked of the first teammate to turn on the showers. We don’t want to drive home smelling like a foot because we have to get in the same car in work clothes in 8 hours.
6. To leave the rink with the same number of teeth as we arrived with.
Yes, I’m wearing a visor. No, it’s not an invite to catch me in the chicklets with your stick. You wear a full cage? Great, I’m not going to chirp you unless you start waving your stick around my ears like you’re the long lost musketeer. You have that cage on and I don’t, keep your stick down champ. It might only be 2-minutes for you but it’s a long trip to the dentist for me tomorrow.
7. For that one guy on the opposing team to bring it back a notch.
Hey practice hero, it’s a B- level beer league. Phil Pritchard and the cup are not in the building; Pierre is not between the glass. You don’t need to hack my wrist off on my follow-through, relax on finishing that check in the corner and no scout is taking notes of your awesome back-check. We all have to work in the morning and not limping around the office is the goal.
8. The guy on the other team wearing #69 to just stop.
We all remember when #69 was hilarious a joke as any, we were 7. Pick a real number and move on.
9. Both goalies to show up.
Contrary to popular belief, the other team’s goalie not showing is almost as frustrating our own goalie not showing. Yeah, we’ll probably (god I hope) win the game. But it’s boring as hell. You look like a jerk for shooting it into the net and a jerk for holding off.
10. To be on the team with the sweet uniforms.
Every league has one team that spent $500 per guy on uniforms and they look like an NHL team walking out of the room. Matching jerseys, socks, gloves, helmets and pants. They’ve been playing together forever, it’s the same guys every season and you hate them mostly out of jealousy.
11. All 5 guys on your team to attempt to play defense.
None of us are Nick Lidstrom, but if I look up from the corner I’d love to see all 5 guys within driving distance of our defensive zone. If I get the puck and look up to see you wildly waving your stick at me from the far blue, you probably aren’t getting the puck and it’s out of spite.
12. Everyone to show up sober.
Boys, there are plenty of beers waiting AFTER the game.
13. The captain of the team to calm down.
Yeah, we all want to win. I don’t need to get screamed at for not being on the boards on the break-out or half-assing it on the backcheck. The goalie looked like he had it under control anyway. Just because you filled out the team’s online registration form doesn’t make you de-facto coach/GM.
14. To make it through a game with all sticks intact.
These aren’t you’re grandfather’s Christian wood sticks. Do they improve my game? Probably not, but I ponied up the $260 a piece for them so if you slash it in half, I’m going to be more pissed than if you slashed my leg in half, there’s no medical coverage for composite sticks.
15. To laugh at the guy with the tinted half shield.
Hey Ovi, is the NHL lighting in the municipal arena getting to your eyes? The only thing more embarrassing than the halfy is the toe drag you’ve tried to pull and failed at the last 9 consecutive shifts. If you spent as much time practicing that move as you do staring at your reflection in the glass, you’d have perfected it by now.
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