Hey there kiddos! OldManDan with a farmers tan here with a new tale of a Geezer in Breezers! Meet Michael, he’s one of the most graceful skaters that I have ever seen lace up hockey skates. No, really, the guy is as smooth as Barry White playing in the background. He hails from the Northwest – Everett (otherwise known Carter Hart’s WHL Town). He plays Beer League, helps his daughter and others learn the game, and coaches the whippersnappers.

Hi Michael, thank you for sitting down with us today. So, what brought you to the great game of hockey? 

I started playing hockey when I was four. My limited memories of that time are like recalling a dream, it was dark and cold (this was Alaska after all), and my coach would skate us out to our designated spot on the ice; teammates would push each other because we had no concept of the game.

By the time I was six we were playing. I guess I was a student of the game from the start, as I would marvel at the skills the other teams brought: first it was banking the puck off the boards; then later, the puck would be a lifted and banked off the boards. I remember thinking, how do we defend against this? 

We’ve all been there right? Hell, I was there last week.

Speaking of us oldsters, do you have any advice? 

Stretch your groin! No joke, nobody wants to rehab a pulled groin, and skating exerts a lot of pressure on the muscles in your groin and hip flexors.

Otherwise, keep it simple. The game has evolved a lot, but the basics are always the best place to start, and continue. Meaning keep working on the simple things always, even as you grow comfortable with them, making your foundation as strong as possible will help you more than learning how to score a “lacrosse goal”.

Hear that, stretch! You’re not-twenty galdurn years old anymore! 

Who do you play with and what makes it fun?

Since returning to hockey, I played a few seasons in the Cascade Hockey League (primarily out of Everett) with the Sting. I still do a Sunday pick-up in Everett with a lot of those guys when I’m not helping out with the WWFHA Learn to Play Program. I also play in the Monday Night Hockey League out of Highland. This is a four-team league that redrafts twice a year. I really love skating in this league, as there is a lot of talent, and you get a chance to play on a team with everyone else.

Anyone else in the family play the game? 

My daughter has started playing – she’s two years in – and I have really enjoyed being a parent coach for her Learn to Play program. She also goes with me to the Everett Silvertips games. (For the record his daughter is awesome!)

So, get out there! Get back to playing, recruit new players or fans and get back to hockey like it was played in the olden days! Be like Mike – OK Michael, -and find out where hockey makes you happy. And while you’re at it, get offa my lawn!

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