Friday, February 10, 2012

Not Really About the Maine Red Claws

JMC and I went to see the Maine Red Claws play the Erie Bay Hawks in a D-League game at the Expo in Portland on January 20th. One of us was going to write a blog about our attendance but we never got around to it and there really wasn't much to write about, since I have blogged about going there once already and nothing stood out (I thought at the time anyway) about the game itself. There are a couple of funny anecdotes that happened on the way to the game, which I'll get to in a moment; but as far as commenting on the game based on what we saw that night, I would have only commented that the Red Claws were overmatched, despite a reasonably close final score of 122-113, especially in that they had no answer for Erie's 6' 3" point guard, who ended up having a triple/double. You can see video highlights of the game here, which if you do will give away the surprise.
First, I'll go back to the brief anecdotes and then I'll reveal why I finally decided to blog about going to the game. I parked the car where I always do when I go to see the Sea Dogs or Red Claws (the venues being side by side) at an office building parking lot about 5 blocks away. Our intention was to grab a bite to eat somewhere between the car and the arena, and we decided on Amato's Italian Sandwich Shop on St. John's Street.  We had over a half hour to get our order, eat and walk the 2 or 3 blocks to the game. So I ordered a Cuban and some hot wings, JMC ordered a meatball sub and a dessert pastry. It took a good 10 minutes for our order to be ready (JMC's dad called while we're waiting and he can tell you that story) and just before it was, JMC leans over to me and says, "You know, there's no tables in here."
So now we have this messy sit-down food to-go and it's like 30 degrees out. So we're walking down the sidewalks, over snow banks eating this messy food with our fingers freezing, throwing chicken bones in the snow banks.  (This is where you laugh heartily because you got a good visual)  The other story is that we got to the arena before our food was finished but we were mostly full. So we bet on whether, if we left the bags of food on the sidewalk against the arena, the food would still be there when we came out. I won the bet because I said it would be because it was too cold and the game was on, so the arena workers wouldn't bother. If I've left out anything, hopefully JMC will fill you in in the comments.
So why am I finally deciding to write this blog? Well, for a few days, even if you don't follow the NBA, you've probably been hearing about the rookie point guard who's been a sensation for the NY Knicks in their last three games. Well, given the fact this point guard is of Asian decent, you'd think it would've clicked sooner than this morning that the Erie Bay Hawks are the NY Knicks D-League team and the unguardable point guard we saw a few weeks ago was Asian; in fact, his last name was Lin. Yeah, that Jeremy Lin...the Asian decent, Harvard grad point guard who's been lighting it up for the Knicks lately.
This guy right here:
Go to and it's his face you see first, even before LeBron.  The Knickerbockers host the Lakers tonight, with Jeremy Lin as the likely starting point guard. "Lin, an undrafted guard from Harvard, has led the Knicks to three straight wins, scoring more than 20 points in each game."  And even though Lin was born in the US, the Chinese and Taiwanese are scrambling to air his games.  And I thought all I had to talk about was chicken wings on frozen fingers.


Shel said...

Very cool!!! You never know who you will see or what can happen at a minor league game... including the trash!

Glad you both had fun!

Zebster said...

Jeremy Lin tonight against the Lakers: 38 points, 7 assists, 4 rebounds, 6 turnovers, drew a critical charge late in the game. He's leading and energizing an underachieving team with 2 stars out of the lineup. All of this from an undrafted free agent from Harvard who's been released by 2 teams and has been playing in the D-League. Most importantly the Knicks win the game.

Anonymous said...

It's amazing he's playing so well in his first games as a starter and he wasn't drafted either.

That's the one thing I miss about minor league hockey. I can say I saw Ray Whitney's first professional games when he started with the San Diego Gulls 20 years ago, and I also saw NHL notables like Josh Gratton and Cody McLeod before they made a name for themselves.

And don't forget Special K -- Dmitri Kvartalnov, who should have been a great NHL player when the Bruins picked him after his one season in San Diego.