Managing The Rink – Hockey Knowledge Is Essential


I was working the door at the game the other night when a friendly man in a cowboy hat game up to me at intermission to ask if he could go outside my door to have a cigarette. I told him he could but he couldn’t take his beer outside. So he decided to hang around my door and finish his drink before going outside. This happens a lot and I appreciated that he didn’t put up a fuss. 

As we stood there, he asked if I know hockey. I shrugged and said, “a little.” Obviously the man didn’t know that I’ve worked in hockey for the past five years. 

Out of nowhere he announced, “I play hockey.” To which I smiled and nodded. 

After another lull in the conversation, he explained, “well, I don’t actually play hockey. I manage a team.” Again, I smiled and nodded. 

By then, I knew the guy was full of hot air, so I decided to play with him a little. 

“Really?” I asked, intrigued. “Which team?” 

I could almost see the gears turning in his brain, going through the mental roll-a-dex to find an obscure team that I probably wouldn’t know. I shrugged non-committal and he went on to tell me all about his career managing this team that he mentioned. He sounded like a dating profile. 

I couldn’t take anymore and I felt embarrassed for him about his blatant lie, so I had to stop him. “Wait, I know that team. Aren’t the Milwaukee Admirals the farm team for the Nashville Predators??” To which his face went white with shame when he was caught in a lie. 

“That’s so exciting that you’re the team manager for an AHL team!” And I spit out a few stats and player names before this guy threw his empty beer can in the recycle bin and walked away with his tail between his legs because I knew more about the team than he did. 

On his way out the door, I called out, “are you scouting our team? Is that why you’re here? What a great job you have! It was nice to meet you!” 

I never saw the guy again. Maybe next time he’ll think twice about lying to hockey staff. Not cool, man. Not cool. Especially when the staff knows more about hockey than you do. 


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