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Unusual Happenings in an Unusual Season

I have awakened from a long, deep slumber, like Robin Williams re-emerging from Jumanji, to once again write about hockey.

See the source imageHaha, even his references are dated!

But even as I write about hockey, it’s only marginally connected. You see, dear friends, the most unusual circumstances regarding the cancellation of Game 1 between Carolina and Boston two days ago got me thinking about other games being cancelled for unusual reasons.

While a playoff game between Carolina and Boston, taking place in Toronto, being cancelled as a result of another game, also taking place in Toronto, and also not featuring Toronto, taking forever to get off the ice intended to be used for said game would be hilariously bizarre without taking into consideration the Coronavirus pandemic, there are other quite bizarre instances in which a game has been cancelled or postponed:

November 20, 2014 – New York Rangers @ Buffalo Sabres – Let it Snow
Everybody ignored Jon Snow’s warnings about the White Walkers, and much like the final season of Game of Thrones, all hopes of this game being played on the originally scheduled date disappointingly fizzled away. You see, Buffalo is located at the shores of Lake Erie, which occasionally gets absolutely hammered with Lake-effect snow. This epic snow storm, then dubbed “Snowpocalypse,” dumped a whopping 5 feet of snow (or 1.52 m if you prefer metric), on Buffalo and its surrounding area.

Is Jon Snow About to Learn the Truth of His Lineage on 'Game of ...

Spoilers, I think?

January 7, 2014 – Carolina Hurricanes @ Buffalo Sabres – Baby, it’s Cold Outside

From one catastrophically snowy day in Buffalo, to a miserably cold one, the 2013-14 Polar Vortex heavily affected North America, with flights being cancelled, trains not running, and… well, hockey games being cancelled. It wasn’t just the extreme cold, but the high winds (which carry the dreaded wind chill. For our southern neighbors with little snow experience, it is the cold equivalent of trying to start your car with the AC in full blast in the middle of a hot day). Cars and buses wouldn’t start. Simply being outside immediately carried the threat of frostbite. Hardly a good day for hockey. At least it probably allows us to showcase Buffalo’s most famous resident:

Image result for elsa

Her Tinder profile lists hobbies as creating earworms and trolling Sabres

April 19, 2013 – Pittsburgh Penguins @ Boston Bruins – America’s Most Wanted

The first entry on our list involving the immediate aftermath of a horrific incident; this game was postponed due to the city of Boston being on lockdown for a city-wide manhunt for the perpetrator of the Boston City Marathon Bombing. This was not the only game affected by said bombing, as the April 15th game against the Ottawa Senators was also postponed. It is important to note that Boston ended up making a miraculous run to the finals that year (including the game 7 comeback against the leafs), and the Red Sox would go on to win the World Series. Boston Strong indeed!

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Inspiringly: “It was also their f*cking year.”

November 22, 2005 – Nashville Predators @ Detroit Red Wings – Abandoned

From one large-scale scary incident, to a smaller incident, but scary nonetheless. This game actually started at its scheduled time; however, during the first period with approximately 7 minutes left to play, Red Wings defenseman Jiri Fischer suffered from cardiac arrest, needing to be resuscitated. Fischer spent approximately six minutes unconscious before the CPR proved effective. Unfortunately, Fischer would never play another NHL game again until the alumni game before the 2014 Winter Classic. Fortunately, he is still alive and well!

December 19, 2016 – Detroit Red Wings @ Carolina Hurricanes – On the (Poor) Rocks
A cooling system malfunction lead to poor ice conditions for Carolina for this game. The Red Wings were willing to wait; however, due to NHL rules, teams must have at least 22 hours between games. The game was originally scheduled for 7:00 PM, but the deadline was set for 9:30. As the remainder of this article would indicate, the deadline would not be met, and the game would end up being rescheduled. Maybe they could’ve used a certain famous Buffalo resident…

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She simply can’t let it go.

There have been many other games postponed due to challenging winter weather, which wildly varies depending on the host’s experience with snow (an inch of snow in Tampa is equivalent to about 3 feet in Buffalo). There have been other various memorable games being postponed, but a lot of the reasons overlap.

Other fun fact. Frozen came out the same year that the Polar Vortex happened… coincidence?

Stay safe, wear a mask, we’ll see each other again real soon!

Pedro Rengel

Pedro Rengel

Originally hailing from the tropical paradise of Venezuela, I moved to Canada at age 11 for the sole reason of falling in love with hockey as a self-proclaimed Pittsburgh Penguins fan. Now a Canadian citizen, my mad love affair with hockey represents a statistical contribution as opposed to an anomaly. Being able to write this well despite having Spanish as a first language is enough of an anomaly (I'm occasionally biased).
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