Another year, another new season for the Minnesota Wild and another home opener at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN. Hello again, I went back to Xcel to cover the Wild again but this time it was for the Wild home opener and not a preseason game. Game #2 for me is in the books, only 498 more to go to hit my goal of 500. The cool thing I got to do for this game was I got to go up to the catwalk high above and had fellow photographer Brad Rempel show me how he sets up his remote camera. It's really hard to describe how anxious you feel up there because if something drops, it's game over. I'm not afraid of heights at all, but I had a death grip on anything I had in my hands and knowing how severe the consequences would be if something fell made me feel anxious for when I eventually get my remote set up completed. Apologies for my cellphone shot, but this gives you an idea of just how high it is.
The Wild's opponent for today was Central Division rival St. Louis Blues, a team the Wild knocked out in the playoffs. St. Louis has a reputation for being a tough and gritty team, so I figured that I'd be in for a treat. Plenty of body checks were thrown from both teams and the physical play was enough to please and anger the home crowd. So...photos!
During the 2nd period I was able to shoot between the benches, which is a rarity since there's usually TV cameras. There's some pros and cons to this, the pros being that you're up close and personal to all the players and coaches and can get some unique shots that you normally wouldn't be able to. Another is that you get to hear the player interactions with one another and all of the chirps they yell to the other team. The main con is that you have to be there before 3 minutes to go in the period, otherwise the staff won't let you on there because you have to walk through the Wild bench to get access. So my time to edit and transmit my images is even shorter. Other con is that sticks and pucks can hit you, which happened to me with a puck but it was a soft floater in my direction so it didn't hurt.
That's all from me, Wild are on a long road trip so I get to take a small break before I'm at it again. Next game I should be at will be when the Chicago Blackhawks are in town on the 30th of October.
Canon 1D Mark IV
Canon 5D Classic