Monday, October 20, 2014

Sporting Vladivostok (Again!)

20.10.14
Kristen says...

We really have done a lot of sporty things in Vlad recently...I feel like this will be a trend in Canberra, too, as from what I hear, Aussies enjoy the great outdoors...

I have had the great fortune to make friends with an American living in Vlad--an American who happens to be dating a Canadian who happens to play for the local KHL (think Russian NHL) team (the Vladivostok Admiral). The fortune is more that we have become friends (she's a fun person to hang out with) and less that her boyfriend plays hockey, as I'm not terribly fond of the sport (it ranks down with soccer and basketball for me--all three are so terribly boring, hockey and soccer because nobody ever scores, and basketball because everybody scores every trip up the court).

Still, I was very happy to take her up on her offer of tickets to yesterday's game, partly because I wanted to hang out, and partly because it is always fun to watch athletics in foreign countries, especially when the sport you are watching is as beloved as hockey is in Russia.

As you can see, we had really great seats, just behind the home team, and almost at ice level. It was a little hard to see what was happening on the far right side of the ice, but luckily our goalie was at our end for two of the three periods and since nobody scored until the shootout at the end (of course) we didn't really miss much at the other end, either.

The game started out with a rollicking song played on three violins, with the players dressed in sparkling white, red and blue:

and continued with key player introductions,

the (Russian) national anthem, and on with the game! Gooo Admiral!

My apathy about hockey makes sense when you realize that hockey isn't really a terribly popular sport in Iowa, even though in Des Moines there is an AHL team (the Iowa Wild, previously the Iowa Chops and Iowa Stars) and a Junior USHL team (the Buccaneers) who both have a very dedicated fan base...

Both of which have nothing on the fans of Admiral...
What you don't see in this picture are the fans waving placards or flags
To my knowledge, both Iowa teams are also lacking in cheerleaders (something I don't actually think is much of a loss, to be honest) and a drum corps (again, not a bad thing...)

And, I'm pretty sure they don't have a song proclaiming their name loud and long, either...
video

But they do have the Kiss Cam!
Good times! :)

As I said before, the game was, unfortunately, scoreless through three periods and a five-minute OT, but in the end, Admiral managed to pull out the W with three goals (as opposed to Hockey Club Sochi's 1)
Not this time, Hockey Club Sochi!
Maybe he was distracted by the cheerleaders??? 
The winning goal!
video

Somehow that translated to a final score of 1-0 (I really don't get hockey) and cheers all around!


I can't say I'm any more of a hockey fan after watching the game, but it was probably the best of all the games I have been to in my life...number 1 of 3 isn't too bad! :)

KF

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