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Old
08-04-2010, 10:56 AM
  #1
phillyfanatic
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Home Ice Advantage - a theory:

Has anyone ever wondered why every team in the NHL with a couple of exceptions have significantly better records at "home" than they do on the "road"? Why two teams can play 7 games and the "home" team is better each game - especially in period 1? I mean, why does it matter where the game is played - shouldn't the team with the best players and system win, regardless of venue? How exactly do the "fans" impact the outcome of the game?

It is the dog days of summer, so why not have a theoretical discussion outside of the typical thread? I would love to hear your thoughts on this - if your not interested, move to the next thread.

The reason I bring this up is, about 6 months ago I read the new Dan Brown book. In it, they refer to the controversial noetic science. There is a belief that your thoughts are tangible. That a large group of people thinking about one thing can somehow make it so. In sport, the most obvious example is home field/ice advantage. Players often cite the "energy" from the crowd as something they can harness and leverage to make them play better. Remember Mike Knuble pleeing with Flyer fans to ensure they got to the rink before the 7PM puck drop as the team needs them? Every sport has it - so what is it? Is it possible that the fans thoughts/feelings/passion directly influence the outcome of the game?

OK, so let's say you agree to this and you believe that the energy of the fans impact the players and give them a "lift" to somehow play above themselves. Would it therefore go to reason that the negative energy of the same fans will impact the players and give the opposition a "lift"? Is it possible that our season is doomed due to the fact that Flyer fans will be so against Michael Leighton that they will literally will him to fail? Just how powerful are the thoughts of the fans?

When the Flyers won the Stanley Cup, Flyer fans were notoriously hard on opposing teams and had a love for their team. It was unheard of to boo Bobby Clarke, Bill Barber, Rick Macleish, Bernie Parent, et all - if you did so, you risked bodily harm! Nobody booed the Flyers, instead - they cheered on their team and mercilessly booed and jeered the opposition. Fast forward to 2010. Let's say in game 1, period 1 of the season the Flyers and flying all around the ice; harnessing the energy of the fans to score the opening goal. They are dominating, hitting everything, the place is alive, the opposition is on the ropes/ "weathering the storm". Now let's say the opposition makes a rush and scores, the game is tied 1-1 on an "iffy" goal. I suspect the energy in the crowd will go from cheering/willing their team to a victory to an almost want to see the goalie and thus the team fail. Amazingly, the opposition will feed off this energy and will take over the game. The energy of the fans will give momentum to the opposition. The general negativity of the fans, the quickness to turn on this team will be a factor in the team losing the game.

Is it possible the fans have a direct impact on the outcome of the game? Is it possible that the unrest over our goalie situation has in the past and will continue to hamper them from succeeding? I wonder......

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08-04-2010, 10:59 AM
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1) god i hate dan brown. just want to throw that out there.

2) having 20k people cheering for you is a nice confidence boost, and it can rattle the people its focused against.

3) last change helps a lot. you can get the matchups you want. i don't think theres any kind of psychic magic going on though.

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08-04-2010, 11:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phillyfanatic View Post
Has anyone ever wondered why every team in the NHL with a couple of exceptions have significantly better records at "home" than they do on the "road"? Why two teams can play 7 games and the "home" team is better each game - especially in period 1? I mean, why does it matter where the game is played - shouldn't the team with the best players and system win, regardless of venue? How exactly do the "fans" impact the outcome of the game?

It is the dog days of summer, so why not have a theoretical discussion outside of the typical thread? I would love to hear your thoughts on this - if your not interested, move to the next thread.

The reason I bring this up is, about 6 months ago I read the new Dan Brown book. In it, they refer to the controversial noetic science. There is a belief that your thoughts are tangible. That a large group of people thinking about one thing can somehow make it so. In sport, the most obvious example is home field/ice advantage. Players often cite the "energy" from the crowd as something they can harness and leverage to make them play better. Remember Mike Knuble pleeing with Flyer fans to ensure they got to the rink before the 7PM puck drop as the team needs them? Every sport has it - so what is it? Is it possible that the fans thoughts/feelings/passion directly influence the outcome of the game?

OK, so let's say you agree to this and you believe that the energy of the fans impact the players and give them a "lift" to somehow play above themselves. Would it therefore go to reason that the negative energy of the same fans will impact the players and give the opposition a "lift"? Is it possible that our season is doomed due to the fact that Flyer fans will be so against Michael Leighton that they will literally will him to fail? Just how powerful are the thoughts of the fans?

When the Flyers won the Stanley Cup, Flyer fans were notoriously hard on opposing teams and had a love for their team. It was unheard of to boo Bobby Clarke, Bill Barber, Rick Macleish, Bernie Parent, et all - if you did so, you risked bodily harm! Nobody booed the Flyers, instead - they cheered on their team and mercilessly booed and jeered the opposition. Fast forward to 2010. Let's say in game 1, period 1 of the season the Flyers and flying all around the ice; harnessing the energy of the fans to score the opening goal. They are dominating, hitting everything, the place is alive, the opposition is on the ropes/ "weathering the storm". Now let's say the opposition makes a rush and scores, the game is tied 1-1 on an "iffy" goal. I suspect the energy in the crowd will go from cheering/willing their team to a victory to an almost want to see the goalie and thus the team fail. Amazingly, the opposition will feed off this energy and will take over the game. The energy of the fans will give momentum to the opposition. The general negativity of the fans, the quickness to turn on this team will be a factor in the team losing the game.

Is it possible the fans have a direct impact on the outcome of the game? Is it possible that the unrest over our goalie situation has in the past and will continue to hamper them from succeeding? I wonder......
It is tough to quantify in hockey because there is a real, tangible effect to home ice in that the home team gets the distinct tactical advantage of last change.

I can say; however, that in 2008 I watched the Philadelphia fan base play an integral part in the Phillies winning the championship. Multiple pitchers were absolutely knocked off their games by the fans (Lowe and Sabathia stick out in my mind) and the team went undefeated at home in the postseason (feel free to correct me if I am wrong, but that is my recollection).

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08-04-2010, 11:05 AM
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I imagine the routine can't hurt either. Morning skate, pre game nap, meal, and then to the rink. When your on the road, these things aren't as easily timed out, and it's just one more thing on your mind. It's probably a small factor, but theres something to be said for having a routine versus actively having to plan out your afternoon before a game.

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08-04-2010, 11:07 AM
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Big mystery? Last line change and faceoffs means a lot for a head coach that can take advantage of it.

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08-04-2010, 11:08 AM
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1) Dan Brown is an idiot.

2) It's not the thoughts but the noise of the fans that irritates or lifts a team.

3) Playing at home is routine, no bus ride/flight to get to the game.

4) Last change helps.

5) Players are only humans. 20 000 people booing or cheering does make a psychological difference. It affects you. You may learn to handle it, keep your emotions in check, but ultimately there's a difference.

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08-04-2010, 11:26 AM
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It absolutely makes a difference. Sure, the faceoff rule, last change, routine, etc. all make a difference, but as a player, when my fans are going nuts and you can't hear anything but cheering, you get a certain boost of adrenaline and it really does help. It gives you confidence in your play, and that can make all the difference sometimes.

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08-04-2010, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McNasty View Post
I imagine the routine can't hurt either. Morning skate, pre game nap, meal, and then to the rink. When your on the road, these things aren't as easily timed out, and it's just one more thing on your mind. It's probably a small factor, but theres something to be said for having a routine versus actively having to plan out your afternoon before a game.
I would say this is the opposite though, when on the road, you have a set schedule with nothing to influence you, yet, when home, you go back to your house, maybe you have to feed the kids, take 'em to the doctors, deal with the wife/gf, etc. If anything there is a less set schedule at home.

Its also one of the reasons the Blackhawks, after going on a road tear in the playoffs last year, actually did the away routine at home in the Sharks series, i.e. stayed in a hotel, bussed as a team to the arena and back.

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08-04-2010, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by FlyersCup08 View Post
It absolutely makes a difference. Sure, the faceoff rule, last change, routine, etc. all make a difference, but as a player, when my fans are going nuts and you can't hear anything but cheering, you get a certain boost of adrenaline and it really does help. It gives you confidence in your play, and that can make all the difference sometimes.
I think this is the last thing player’s care about when on the ice but the 1st thing the mention when interviewed.

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08-04-2010, 12:25 PM
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I think this is the last thing player’s care about when on the ice but the 1st thing the mention when interviewed.
Why do you spout that crap like it's fact?

As a player myself, and i presume it's exactly the same for every other player in the world, when you have every single person cheering you on personally, you get a massive rush, that can make you play at a different level. It's not the last thing you think about, it's the only thing!

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08-04-2010, 12:27 PM
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I imagine some players are just more comfortable, because they are in a place that they are familiar with. Even though the actual rink itself has no difference when compared to the others except maybe the springs behind the boards.


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08-04-2010, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Spongolium View Post
Why do you spout that crap like it's fact?

As a player myself, and i presume it's exactly the same for every other player in the world, when you have every single person cheering you on personally, you get a massive rush, that can make you play at a different level. It's not the last thing you think about, it's the only thing!
First of all, learn how to ****ing read. I said and I am forced to quote my self "I think". Means not a fact just my opinion.

and 2nd, I wonder how 20.000 screaming fans help Briere win a faceoff against Crosby or how those same fans will help Betts line against Toews.

Talk about rush there. Extra rush if you score a goal in home building. Fine. Not a huge deal.

As a player your self you should know that face offs and last change is more important.


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08-04-2010, 12:33 PM
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Home ice means more during the regular season than it does in the playoffs... why, because teams get tired on road trips, etc.

During the playoffs, everyone is in the same boat and it equalizes things considerably. This is especially true with modern traveling amenities.

So, why does home ice matter?

1) Maybe some adrenaline from the fans.
2) Slept in your own bed.
3) Most importantly to the game: last change... which means more to some teams than others.

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08-04-2010, 01:20 PM
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Home ice/court/field is a statistical advantage in each of the four major sports. There is coming to the venue from the comforts of home, support of home crowd, and benefits in rules for home teams (last change in hockey, last at-bat in baseball, etc.).
Also, all venues are different. At home, players know the boards and how the ice will play (fast, choppy, etc.), as well as subtle things like the lighting (to pick up the puck in the air, for example). When the Flyers were winning Cups, not all rinks were 200x85 (a distinct advantage to those home teams).
There are differences in every sport. Think of the stories the Celtics and their opponents have shared about how the ball bounces on the parquet. The Meadowlands with the wind stories. No two baseball fields have the same dimentions. You even hear NASCAR drivers talk about winning on their home track because of familiarity.
---
In MLB, currently only 1 of 30 teams have better road records than home marks (Rays).
In NFL, only 9 of 32 teams had better road records last season.
In NBA, only 2 of 30 teams had better road records last season (Celts and Sixers).
In the NHL, it was 5 of 30 teams that were better on the road last season.
So 17 of 122 teams have been better on the road in the past year.

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08-04-2010, 02:07 PM
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If you watch any NHL game, you will notice the home team starts off fast and the road team attempts to take the crowd out of the game. It is only when the crowd loses interest that the "advantage" is taken away. A big hit, a fight, etc re-energizes the crowd and once again the home team gets energy from the crowd.

Why was Edmonton a .500 team last year at home yet had 9 wins on the road. They are a terrible team, so how in the name of the good Lord did they win 18 games at home? If you have ever been to a hockey game in Canada, you know that along with Philadelphia, the crowds are electric. That building was rocking every night, regardless of where they were in the standings......it is hockey in Canada!!!

Now, my original post was a question on how the crowd turning on the team quickly will take this advantage away. Do you think the unrest in Flyer nation will show itself in the crowd? Will the fans in the stadium support this team throughout the game, or will they turn on Leighton and therefor the team quickly? If they turn on them, wouldn't this remove our home ice advantage and in turn, could our home record next year look more like a road record? If that happened, we would end up 8 games under .500 and well out of the playoffs using last years record!

Crazy? Hmmm. Someone explain to me how the Philadelphia Flyers were the worst team in the NHL three years ago? Was it talent? Were they the least talented team in the league? They went 10-24-7 that year at home. I remember watching games that year with so much contempt for the team, I would be all over them 5 minutes into the game. There was no home ice advantage that year but rather a home ice dis-advantage. It started bad, the goalies were bad - there was no positive energy behind them. Philadelphia is the best city in North America to win in and the worst city to lose in. When the fans turn on you, it gets ugly quickly.

So, with the negative approach to the season - I have a bad feeling the fans will turn on this team quickly if Leighton doesn't start hot. In fact, could this be reason enough to upgrade the #1 goalie, forgetting everything else?

If we have a #1 we can "support", like Emery last year.......then the fans will give this team every opportunity to win them back. In reading these boards, I get this feeling that home ice might get really ugly for the Flyers next year if Leighton is in net.

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08-04-2010, 02:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phillyfanatic View Post
If you watch any NHL game, you will notice the home team starts off fast and the road team attempts to take the crowd out of the game. It is only when the crowd loses interest that the "advantage" is taken away. A big hit, a fight, etc re-energizes the crowd and once again the home team gets energy from the crowd.

Why was Edmonton a .500 team last year at home yet had 9 wins on the road. They are a terrible team, so how in the name of the good Lord did they win 18 games at home? If you have ever been to a hockey game in Canada, you know that along with Philadelphia, the crowds are electric. That building was rocking every night, regardless of where they were in the standings......it is hockey in Canada!!!

Now, my original post was a question on how the crowd turning on the team quickly will take this advantage away. Do you think the unrest in Flyer nation will show itself in the crowd? Will the fans in the stadium support this team throughout the game, or will they turn on Leighton and therefor the team quickly? If they turn on them, wouldn't this remove our home ice advantage and in turn, could our home record next year look more like a road record? If that happened, we would end up 8 games under .500 and well out of the playoffs using last years record!

Crazy? Hmmm. Someone explain to me how the Philadelphia Flyers were the worst team in the NHL three years ago? Was it talent? Were they the least talented team in the league? They went 10-24-7 that year at home. I remember watching games that year with so much contempt for the team, I would be all over them 5 minutes into the game. There was no home ice advantage that year but rather a home ice dis-advantage. It started bad, the goalies were bad - there was no positive energy behind them. Philadelphia is the best city in North America to win in and the worst city to lose in. When the fans turn on you, it gets ugly quickly.

So, with the negative approach to the season - I have a bad feeling the fans will turn on this team quickly if Leighton doesn't start hot. In fact, could this be reason enough to upgrade the #1 goalie, forgetting everything else?

If we have a #1 we can "support", like Emery last year.......then the fans will give this team every opportunity to win them back. In reading these boards, I get this feeling that home ice might get really ugly for the Flyers next year if Leighton is in net.
Don't use this board to quantify Flyers fans. This board is a very knowledgeable minority. The vast majority of Flyers fans (and fans of all sports in general) are idiots who just want to drink and have fun. Not to mention the SC appearance last year will bring alot of bandwagon idiots to the rink.

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08-04-2010, 03:01 PM
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Do you don't think flyer fans will turn on the team quickly with leighton in net?

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08-04-2010, 03:03 PM
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Originally Posted by phillyfanatic View Post
Has anyone ever wondered why every team in the NHL with a couple of exceptions have significantly better records at "home" than they do on the "road"? Why two teams can play 7 games and the "home" team is better each game - especially in period 1? I mean, why does it matter where the game is played - shouldn't the team with the best players and system win, regardless of venue? How exactly do the "fans" impact the outcome of the game?

It is the dog days of summer, so why not have a theoretical discussion outside of the typical thread? I would love to hear your thoughts on this - if your not interested, move to the next thread.

The reason I bring this up is, about 6 months ago I read the new Dan Brown book. In it, they refer to the controversial noetic science. There is a belief that your thoughts are tangible. That a large group of people thinking about one thing can somehow make it so. In sport, the most obvious example is home field/ice advantage. Players often cite the "energy" from the crowd as something they can harness and leverage to make them play better. Remember Mike Knuble pleeing with Flyer fans to ensure they got to the rink before the 7PM puck drop as the team needs them? Every sport has it - so what is it? Is it possible that the fans thoughts/feelings/passion directly influence the outcome of the game?

OK, so let's say you agree to this and you believe that the energy of the fans impact the players and give them a "lift" to somehow play above themselves. Would it therefore go to reason that the negative energy of the same fans will impact the players and give the opposition a "lift"? Is it possible that our season is doomed due to the fact that Flyer fans will be so against Michael Leighton that they will literally will him to fail? Just how powerful are the thoughts of the fans?

When the Flyers won the Stanley Cup, Flyer fans were notoriously hard on opposing teams and had a love for their team. It was unheard of to boo Bobby Clarke, Bill Barber, Rick Macleish, Bernie Parent, et all - if you did so, you risked bodily harm! Nobody booed the Flyers, instead - they cheered on their team and mercilessly booed and jeered the opposition. Fast forward to 2010. Let's say in game 1, period 1 of the season the Flyers and flying all around the ice; harnessing the energy of the fans to score the opening goal. They are dominating, hitting everything, the place is alive, the opposition is on the ropes/ "weathering the storm". Now let's say the opposition makes a rush and scores, the game is tied 1-1 on an "iffy" goal. I suspect the energy in the crowd will go from cheering/willing their team to a victory to an almost want to see the goalie and thus the team fail. Amazingly, the opposition will feed off this energy and will take over the game. The energy of the fans will give momentum to the opposition. The general negativity of the fans, the quickness to turn on this team will be a factor in the team losing the game.

Is it possible the fans have a direct impact on the outcome of the game? Is it possible that the unrest over our goalie situation has in the past and will continue to hamper them from succeeding? I wonder......
I used to play competitive chess as a kid (I know, I know). The team and I used to travel across the US or Pa up to three times a year to play in the nationals or states or team tournaments. There were also a large number of Philadelphia tournaments (the world open was held every year at the Adams mark). I performed much better at home than away. Here's teh thing, tho, I had the same number of people rooting for me in Tuscon that I did in Philadelphia I had the same "collective thoughts" wanting me to win (probably moreso when we went across country because (1) the bigger tournaments meant more to the team and (2) because noone could leave to go home after their round).

My point is, you would be surprised how much better you perform simply because you got to sleep in your own bed, wake up and make your own breakfast, watch your favorite movies, and see your family. Granted, teams do get energy from the crowd and feed off of it. But it has more to do with being well rested and happy to be in your own bed than anything else

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08-04-2010, 03:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phillyfanatic View Post
Do you don't think flyer fans will turn on the team quickly with leighton in net?
i think theyre more likely to turn on leighton. thats gonna be brutal for the guy if it happens.

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08-04-2010, 03:13 PM
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If Flyers win the last game of the season against Skirts in 2009 they get home ice against Pens and I bet the series has a different ending. This is why teams who win the cup are usually teams who finish as a top seed.

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08-06-2010, 08:04 PM
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OK yes in hockey there are actual rules that help the home team, but how about football a.k.a. soccer? In soccer winning an away match is considered like some sort of a godly accomplishment, so much so that the tiebreaker between teams is most commonly 'away goals scored'. I've always thought this was insane but then talking to English people at my university they are perfectly fine with it and always talk about how snatching away from home games and holding ground at home is what makes great teams great and such.

Obviously routine and all that affect a person, so lets not all chalk this up to 'oh its the rules' that give home teams an advantage in hockey.

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08-07-2010, 07:02 PM
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ive been to 6 other arenas and the flyers and montreal have the most energy. there is a definate impact this energy has on the players emotionally especially because hockey is a very emotional sport. some arenas produce very boring lackluster games because they are dead. im talkin to you florida. this is some hippie **** i know but point is some places suck to see a game and im sure play in because of it. one example of a game i really think home ice determined the outcome was game 7 of the 2006 final. thats games in edmonton, canes lose.

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08-07-2010, 09:57 PM
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ive been to 6 other arenas and the flyers and montreal have the most energy. there is a definate impact this energy has on the players emotionally especially because hockey is a very emotional sport. some arenas produce very boring lackluster games because they are dead. im talkin to you florida. this is some hippie **** i know but point is some places suck to see a game and im sure play in because of it. one example of a game i really think home ice determined the outcome was game 7 of the 2006 final. thats games in edmonton, canes lose.
One of the worst weighted crowds I've ever seen (meaning you expect bad crowds if the team sucks, so the better the team the better the crowd, think Chicago when they sucked compared to now they think they're the "Madhouse") is Washington. Just, meh. I went to a game against the Bruins and there was, like, no energy at all. They have that stupid horn (not a goal horn, this goes through out the whole game -- bahm bahm bahm, LETS GO CAPS) that literally makes me wish every Caps "fan" dies. Even a place like Pitt (now they they're a powerhouse I guess) isn't that great of a crowd if you go to a game there.

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08-08-2010, 06:54 AM
  #24
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Originally Posted by Spongolium View Post
Why do you spout that crap like it's fact?

As a player myself, and i presume it's exactly the same for every other player in the world, when you have every single person cheering you on personally, you get a massive rush, that can make you play at a different level. It's not the last thing you think about, it's the only thing!

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08-08-2010, 12:11 PM
  #25
mm6492
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If you have a good coach, last change means alot.

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