BY: Mitch Beck, Publisher, Howlings
It’s been a long couple of months.
Since December 11th, I’ve had two shoulder operations – the first to correct a torn labrum, a torn rotator cuff, remove arthritic buildup on my shoulder and a couple of other minor things that to be frank with you (even though I’m Mitch) I just have no clue what they did. The second operation on the shoulder came after the first one got severely infected. it included a fun and luxurious four day stay at the beautiful Waterbury Hospital (Spa and Resort). Because i have such tremendous problems with allergies to antibiotics, it was a MAJOR issue finding a drug they could give to me that wouldn’t get me worse off and still treat the infection.
I finished that run only to have an issue with my stomach come up that required a surgical procedure to resolve. While not a major problem, and it probably could have waited, I elected to get it done while still recovering from the shoulder and try to knock off two birds with one stone. Little did I realize how painful that would be…and I don’t take narcotic pain medications unless it’s absolutely necessary. In this case, I barely took anything and just dealt with it.
Well, I am glad to say that I am feeling a great deal better and while the original plan was for me to return Friday night in Springfield to cover the Wolf Pack and Falcons game, my wife reminded me that it’s Valentines Day and after missing so much time already and that I’ll be gone most weekends after this, that one more game wouldn’t be a big deal. So I will make my return to covering the games on Saturday night when the Wolf Pack take on the visiting Manchester Monarchs at the XL Center.
For me, in many ways it feels almost like opening night. I haven’t watched the team play in quite a while because I thought it would upset me not being a part of it. I think that was the right call. This whole thing has been very hard for me. I’ve been covering this team almost ten years now and it’s become a BIG part of my life and frankly my family’s life as well.
I do want to first and foremost than Gerry Cantlon who has done an extraordinary job in getting me great information and stories to share with you guys. he ‘ll continue to do so after Saturday. I’m a HUGE propoenent of giving differing views of the same game. I think it gives you the readers just that much more. Gerry has been, not only a terrific friend, but a great teacher and has the sharpest encylopedia-like mind when it comes to hockey information. He’s a great gift for us all and I’m super grateful.
Secondly I want to thank Andy Zilch of the Greenville Road Warriors and Bob Crawford of the Hartford Wolf PAck for continuing their great work with their respective teams and allowing me to be a paprt of sending their message out to each of you.
I also want to thank Irene Leitao, the best anthem singer in Hartford. She has been a magnificent supporter of my work here on Howlings and on Twitter, but has become a real family friend for her constant encouragement during my recuperation. Thank you Irene.
Last, but certainly not least, I want to thank you for sticking with us and for those of you who’ve been so kind in writing me your great good wishes and encouraging comments to me both here and on Twitter. As you know I don’t charge for the information I’m providing here nor do I have any advertisers that pay me anything. Howlings is a VERY expensive proposition for me. It costs me around $10K a year to do – not to mention a BOATLOAD of time and energy. I do it because I think that NY Rangers fans and especially Hartford Wolf Pack and Greenville Road Warriors fans DESERVE better coverage than they have received anywhere else on what is going on in the minor league system.
As an aside, I got an email from the Wolf Pack sales department about a special they’re trying out on Saturday night and I thought I would pass it along.
The note I received contained the following message:
The Wolf Pack are proud to introduce a brand new All You Can Eat package! You will receive a yellow-sectioned ticket (section 119) and all the hot dogs, pretzels, popcorn, nachos, and soda you can devour!
Also, the first 3,000 fans will receive a Dylan McIlrath Bobble-Fist figurine! You’ve seen him use his fists on the ice, now get your very own mini version of him!
I went to the site to see how much that would cost. It’s an incredible deal. $10 for all you can eat? It makes me want to give up my diet and go nuts…
If you want to take part you will need to buy a ticket, and then Click Here to order your tickets.
Until Saturday night folks… IT’S GREAT TO BE BACK!