Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Playoff atmosphere for pre-season action

  • Print

WINNIPEG - The curtain is about to be opened on NHL hockey in Winnipeg after 15 years of a dark stage.

The Jets will take on the Columbus Blue Jackets tonight (7:30 p.m., Sports Radio 1290, TSN) in front of a capacity crowd at the MTS Centre.

The only thing pre-season about this game is the title. No, two points won't be awarded for the winning effort but the atmosphere, emotion and colour of this game is more playoff than exhibition.

"It's going to be really exciting. I don't know how many guys in this room have ever felt something like this," said veteran defenceman Mark Stuart. "We don't really know what to expect but it's going to have unique intensity."

The arena has been jazzed up with new paint, Jets logos and the scoreboard was lit up with the names Winnipeg and Columbus at this morning's morning skate - two NHL teams competing in an NHL game in an NHL city. Forgive me - but wicked cool was my reaction as I settled into my seat at this morning's warm up.

In the days of the Moose the morning skate was often a solitary experience with as few as two media members often in the stands. Tuesday's crowd maxed out at 30 as the Jets took their pre-game twirl.

For the players the moment is upon them and they're just as excited as the fans.

"I'm going to take a minute to soak it up and get that out of the way," said Stuart. "After that it will be business. But I want to see and feel the crowd and enjoy that for a moment."

Portage La Prairie native Troy Bodie will be in the lineup tonight and he's passed three tickets along to his parents and his brother.

"I've only got three tickets but there's more than that coming. I kind of just left it out of my hands so I can focus on the game and what I need to do," said Bodie. "They're pretty excited. They were hoping I would be in this game. I'm pretty excited too. I just hope I don't get too nervous. I need to play my game. Get in there on the forecheck and hopefully get a big hit early to get the crowd into it."

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Maria Aragon performs new single "Nothing but a Beat"

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • horse in sunset - marc gallant
  • June 24, 2012 - 120624  -  Amusement riders on the last day of The Ex Sunday June 24, 2012.    John Woods / Winnipeg Free Press

View More Gallery Photos

Ads by Google