Playing A Level Up

Playing A Level Up

Not too long ago, a friend named Mike asked me to sub on his team, the Danglers, for a Saturday afternoon game. I was excited. The Danglers play in the Federal League at Johnny's Ice House, which is a step up, skill-wise, from the Heartland Novice Hockey League that I currently play in. I was eager to see if I could hack it at the next level. Would I fit in? Or would I make a dumb mistake that costs us the game?

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The $7 hockey stick rack

The $7 hockey stick rack

Hockey sticks are a pain to store. I guess I could put mine in a closet, but I have little closet space to begin with. Plus, I don't want them buried behind a bunch of other things. Hockey sticks also don't stand too well on their own. For a while, I was stashing them behind my bedroom door, but they would fall down if the door hit them, and also mark up the walls. One day, I decided to go to the hardware store to buy some wood to make a stick rack -- but I found something better and easier that cost only $6.98 plus tax.

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Three Things I Learned in Three Years of Hockey

Three Things I Learned in Three Years of Hockey

It's hard to believe that I've been learning the great game of hockey for three years now. I've taken around 100 lessons, have played in well over 100 league games and probably close to 100 pickup games in my three-year hockey odyssey. I don't feel as self-conscious as I used to when entering a rink, but there are still so many times that I feel like a beginner. I've learned a lot since starting hockey, but here are my three biggest takeaways from three years on the ice.

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GoShelf Dryrack: A New Way to Air Out Stinky Hockey Gear

GoShelf Dryrack: A New Way to Air Out Stinky Hockey Gear
Steven Tran did not start hockey until he was an adult. Although he is from Toronto, he did not begin playing until he was 24. That’s younger than when I started, but pretty old by Canadian standards, considering that most kids in Canada are practically born with skates already on their feet. And like myself... Read more »

Which is worse?

Which is worse?
Which of these is the worst locker room hazard? Which have you experienced yourself? More terrifying… what have I left out of this cartoon?       Type your email address in the box and click the “create subscription” button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time. Email:

Would You Lose an Eye Playing Hockey?

Would You Lose an Eye Playing Hockey?
In Game 1 of the New York Rangers-Pittsburgh Penguins playoff series, Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist was accidentally hit in the eye by teammate Marc Staal’s stick. Think about that for a minute: a goaltender — the most well-protected member of a hockey team — was hit in the eye by his own teammate, who, when jostling for... Read more »
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Sharpening Up: Back to Class

Sharpening Up: Back to Class
My 3 on 3 teamlet dissolved in 2015 so I returned to the novice classes at the Skatium in Skokie. I feel like going back to class after getting in some low level structured league play is helping me get more out of the class. When you first start skating, you are wobbling around trying... Read more »

Merry Christmas from The Hockey Noob

Merry Christmas from The Hockey Noob
Merry Christmas from The Hockey Noob and have a safe and fun hockey season!      

5 great, last-minute gifts for a new hockey player

5 great, last-minute gifts for a new hockey player
Christmas is just a little over one week away, and time is running out to get your holiday shopping done. Fortunately, if you have a relative or friend who is a new hockey player, shopping for them is easy. There is so much useful stuff that hockey players need — and most of it doesn’t... Read more »
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Best weird bruise ever...

I have an odd photographic souvenir from my 3 on 3 league team this past summer. This big guy on the opposing team was really chippy and bent on knocking the stuffing out of every single one of my teammates. I took a wallop from him along the boards which resulted in the weirdest bruise in my life...