Friday, November 14, 2008

Major draw

It should come as no surprise that the Detroit Red Wings, the defending Stanley Cup champions, always draw a crowd whenever the team is on the road. And I'm not talking about ticket sales, either.

Though Colin and I added to the circus, I'd say there were at least 30-35 people trying to score autographs from the Wings yesterday before the team's game against the Tampa Bay Lightning. At morning skate, the crowd got so big outside the team's hotel that security shooed the mob across the street. Thankfully, we had taken up our position far away from the hotel.

Later, as the team boarded the bus at game time, we joined the scene near the hotel where, apparently, some lessons had been learned and the hounding was a bit more civilized, shall we say.

Aside from one unfortunate meeting, we had a pretty good day with the Wings. Not only did we get 21 cards signed (four each from Tomas Kopecky and Valtteri Filppula) -- a sampling of which is shown in the top photo -- but Detroit stars Pavel Datsyuk and Darren McCarty signed these two pucks.

Beyond the cards and pucks, we also added these to the collection, for a total of 28 items from the Wings:

~ signatures from Marian Hossa and Kopecky on the Slovakian team jersey;
~ Wings TV color guy and former NHLer Mickey Redmond on a puck; and
~ Sixteen players, including Nicklas Lidstrom and Chris Osgood, and a TV play-by-play guy on Colin's team sheet.

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