October 02, 2016

A tale of two goalies: Dr. Joker and Mr. Hyde

Joker’s goaltending was a bit of a horror show on Sunday. Dr. Joker and Mr. Hyde to be precise.

The veteran shotstopper put in a schizophrenic performance in a pair of half-court games to kick off training camp for Sunday Morning Road Hockey’s silver anniversary season. He could barely stop a beach ball en route to a 10-2 rout in the first game. But after stripping down his cumbersome jersey he was lights out in the second to lead his side to a 5-1 win.

The contrasting contests weren’t lost on Joker.

“The first game I just want to forget about,” said the beleaguered backstop. “I knew I was going to play better in the second game.”

Indeed he did. While rebounds eluded him easily in the opener, he hoovered them in the follow-up. That frustrated shooters who’d thought they’d have an easy start to the season.

“I think Joker did well at motivating himself and bouncing back in that second game,” said Bam Bam.

He could hardly do worse as Joker struggled to regain his touch for the evil orange plastic ball after a long, inactive off-season. Playing a half-court game that demanded his full attention on both teams proved too big a challenge.

“You’re doing twice the work while you’re getting rid of the cobwebs,” said Joker. “You have to stay focussed.”

But Joker shook off his slow start as easily as he shed his hockey jersey. Time and again he made multiple saves as defenders fatigued. And when a shot did elude him, he quickly bounced to his feet, prepared to face the next onslaught.

“If you let in a bad goal, you just have to stay focussed and bounce back,” said Joker.

Bam Bam said the offensive players wore down as the games wore on, their off-season sloth catching them out.

“You’ve always got to keep your legs moving,” said the feisty forward. “There’s no delaying anything in the half court game.”

Sunday’s pre-season games launched Sunday Morning Road Hockey’s silver anniversary. The quarter century will be celebrated with an open invitation to all roadsters from the past to show up for a game as well as blasts from the past on social media.

Early in Sunday’s first game, a bit of unfinished business from last season was concluded when Wink was presented with his first Wink Award. The special trophy is awarded to the roadster who plays with the most dedication and perseverance. It was inaugurated when Wink was forced to step away from the game he helped build to deal with a difficult health issue.
With his health now better, Wink was able to play his way back into the lineup regularly last season. So it was only fitting he should receive his namesake award.

Posted by jaysuburb at October 2, 2016 05:58 PM

Did you get a lawyer to write that Doo?

Posted by: Living Legend at October 4, 2016 10:59 PM

Somebody likes the fancy words.

Posted by: Wink at October 4, 2016 07:51 PM

As I no longer live at the address where the pads are kept, they weren't made available by accident. My apologies.

In future feel free to ring the doorbell and if anyone is home they will know of the situation and provide the gear.

Although, as this episode demonstrates, having the gear at that location isn't a tenable long-term arrangement and we should endeavour to find another more permanent solution.

See you in a few weeks

Posted by: Doo at October 4, 2016 03:32 PM

It looks like you will get...more goaltending from me this year.

Posted by: lakattack at October 4, 2016 01:40 PM

Doo and I are in top physical condition and don't need to take part in pre-season. You guys work hard and we promise to take it easy on you the first few weeks of the season until you get your legs under you. lol

Lak and Kid, I'm expecting more from you this year. It's time that you raise your games to a whole new level.

Wink and Legend, you had banner years last year. Let's not let up.

Ohio and Cleveland, great to see you chomping at the bit to make a good impression early in your sophomore seasons. Maybe the elusive Stanley Stick will be yours this year.

Nouvelle Guy and Big D, way to be a combo that spans the ages.

Bam Bam, my kids say they want their PE teacher from last year back. I promise I'm not being a Joker.

I guess that about covers it. Who is playing net next week?

Posted by: The Colonel at October 3, 2016 06:39 PM