I'm so excited.....It's my first ever Belfast Giants game day!!!!!!!!

I'm not going to be able to watch the game live. As I mentioned in my first-ever vlog yesterday, I won’t get to actually watch the match live. I’m a volunteer with my local hockey team, The U-18 ‘AAA’ Kenora Thistles (Kevin Raine’s former team), so I’ll be at that game counting shots and updating the online scoring. If for some reasons you’re bored during the intermission of the Giants game, feel free to check out my work! lol it’s really not that interesting. It’s just a box score. But if for some reason you do want to check it out here‘s the link.

The second thing that makes me kinda sad is that I don’t current own any teal, let alone any Giants gear. That WILL have to change sometime soon. I think I’ll have to place an order through the webstore within the next week then go out to Walmart or the local second hand store and try and find some team to hold me over. My goal is still to get a jersey, though. First one I want is a teal Kevin Raine jersey. That’s just because he’s the reason I started supporting the club. Something tells me (just purely from playing as the Gants on my playstation) that I‘m going to fall in in love with the play of someone like Ben Lake or Brian Ward or Bobby Farnham.

Actually, looking at Lake’s Elite Prospects page now it’ll probably be him. For years I broadcast junior ‘A’ hockey, so I always have a soft spot for players who make their way from there (like him - three years with the Fort Mac Oil Barons). Not only is he a junior ‘A’ grad who is now a pro, but he played four seasons at Sacred Heart University. Now normally I would be like “who cares? They’re only nationally ranked this season for the first time ever.” Well, I care. On the team currently is Peterborough, Ontario’s Matt Tugnutt. You might recognize that last time - his dad is former long-time NHL goalie Ron Tugnutt. Anyways, Ron owned the Kemptville 73’s of the CCHL for a few seasons while his sons Matt and Jacob played for the team. Ron, along with his wife Lisa, gave me my first paid gig in hockey doing play by play for the 73’s for the end of the 2015/2016 season and most of the 2016/2017 season (I ended up moving for work with only a few months left in the season). On top of getting to work for the Tugnutts, my wife Rebecca actually tutored Matt for a little bit to help him out with some course work which I like to think played a small part in making sure he was eligible for NCAA hockey. I also have a Kemptville 73’s jersey signed by Ron Tugnutt, Matt Tugnutt, and John Beaton (currently in the USHL).

Wow, that was a really long tangent/ explanation as to why I think Ben Lake will be one of my new favourite players once I get to know the team better. Back to today’s game.

The Clan were in Dundee yesterday and I just finished watching the highlights from their loss to the Stars. Glasgow had the lead then kept letting Dundee back in. Taking a look at the table, though, it seems like the Clan are just having a hard time keeping the puck out of their own net this season. Dundee is the only team that’s allowed more goals, but the Stars score more goals.

Anyways. Not only is the rocking SSE crowd going to give a bit of motivation to the Clan (in my opinion), I think the fact that they gave Dundee the game last night is going to put a bad taste in their mouth and make them play a bit harder.

For the Giants, coming off a 1-2 stretch over three games on the road, I can only image head coach Adam Keefe and the WHOLE club is looking forward to the atmosphere the Teal and White Army will bring tonight for You Can Play Night.

So that’s my challenge to my fellow fans lucky enough to be at the game - make it as loud as ever. We’re playing a squad that we KNOW we can beat, and as someone who has spent more time watching live hockey that I care to admit the crowd makes all the difference in the world (as you already know and don’t really need me to tell you).

The last time we played the Clan (FTC), it was the four-goal second period that gave us the win. I’d love nothing more than the first game I watch to be a route of Glasgow. Let’s make it happen, boys.

So, as I’ve said a few times now I won’t be able to watch it live, but I’ll watch the replay when I can afterwards. I’m super excited. What I’m planning on doing is recording a short vlog with my initial reaction after the game, and I’ll follow that up with a more in-depth look at the games itself.

As always, thanks for reading! If you have any thoughts, comment below, send me a message on here or get in touch with me on Twitter (@Stuart_Walter). If you like what I’m doing, don’t be shy to share my article or subscribe!


©2020 Stuart Walter. Pictures provided by the Stena Line Belfast Giants.