to the boiler
Lobsterboy returns to the crease for the first time in
by Jay Suburb
Lobsterboy's return to the goal crease Sunday went as
smooth as butter.
Making his first start in goal in almost two months, the
veteran shotstopper led his team to a decisive 20-11 victory. He'd lost
his position to a pair of netminding neophytes after missing five of
the first six weeks of the season to service the onerous demands of
his exploitative employer.
With Ottoman away, Lobsterboy seized the opportunity to
reclaim his stake as Sunday Morning Road Hockey's premier goalie.
"I think I've told the roadsters I'm the number one
goalie again," says Lobsterboy, who's twice won the Conn Stick
trophy as the most valuable player in the Stanley Stick tournament.
"I think it's solidified my position."
But it wasn't easy.
Going into the game, Lobsterboy says he could feel the
pressure. "I heard the guys mumbling, 'Lobster's gonna get it.'
I felt I had to win."
And once between the pipes, he found himself looking out
at a lot of unfamiliar faces.
"There's so many new guys, I don't know what they're
going to do," says Lobsterboy of the rookies who joined the league
in his absence. "These guys are faster, their playmaking is really
The creaseminding crustacean quickly found his groove,
though. He aggressively stormed into the corners to beat charging forwards
to the evil orange plastic ball. He smothered every rebound that strayed
from his leg pads or bounced off his upper body.
"It pisses them off, but you've got to do it,,"
says Lobsterboy of his insatiable hunger to control the ball. "If
you let the fast guys get to the ball, it creates too many opportunities."
"He's mobile, and he slows the game down a lot because
he's always running to the corners to freeze the ball," says the
Colonel, of his marauding teammate.
"It's kinda frustrating when he runs to cover the
ball everytime," says the Kid, who found his opportunities to freewheel
in the offensive zone severely curtailed by Lobsterboy.
"He goes out and does a better job with rebounds
than anybody else," says notorious gameshow host gone bad, Wink.
"He takes away those rebound garbage goals."
Even a mid-game swoon that allowed his opponents to close
the margin to 11-10 couldn't deter Lobsterboy from his single-minded
determination to make his comeback successful.
"It elevates the game when you have great goalies
on both sides," says Lobsterboy. "The game is back in its
glory; it makes it a lot more fun."
Some roadsters felt Lobsterboy's triumphant return was due more to
an advantageous stick pull than his own dormant skills.
After the initial stick selection, by Billy Idol, placed most of the game's
renowned offensive snipers, Lak Attack, the Colonel and the Kid, on the
same side, some roadsters successfully lobbied for another pull.
And while Lak Attack and the Colonel remained teammates, the Kid found
himself lined up alongside Guy Called Mike and Bird.
"It was impossible," said the Kid of the defensive assignment
before his team. "If we'd tried to play to stop the other team, we
never would have got any shots in the offensive zone."
But, said Wink, the second stick draw did succeed in divvying up the talent
pool. His side just took advantage.
"We just wanted it more," said Wink. "There were four dominant
players out there today, and two of them were on each team. The goaltending
was equal, everybody else was equal."
As Lobsterboy reveled in his triumphant return, at the other end of
the court, Pig Farming Goalie endured a defense that appeared to want
to be anywhere but in their own end. Time and again defensive lapses allowed
Lak Attack, the Colonel and Elvis to freewheel in on the beleaguered shotblocker.
Even the plodding Living Legend was able to spring himself free for four
One of road hockey's most dynamic, and successful, tandems, the Kid
and Bird usually run circles around their opponents, racking up points.
But on Sunday, the Kid largely played alone, as Bird was held off the
scoresheet for the first time in his Sunday Morning career.
"Bird has been living off the morsels given to him by the Kid for
his entire road hockey career," said Wink.
The Kid said he was slowed by the same knee injury that has been nagging
him for the past two weeks. His side was further hobbled when one of their
premier snipers, Guy Called Mike, left late in the game after pulling
This issue of roadhockey.net was delayed when the publication's world
headquarters were flooded out by a burst water pipe. And while crews work
to restore the damage, critical computer equipment has been salvaged and
the show must go on, albeit a little late and a little truncated.