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On The Road: Arrival In Sweden

Colorado in Stockholm for the SAP NHL Global Series

by Ron Knabenbauer @RonKnab /

The Colorado Avalanche is on a 10-day road trip that includes a week in Sweden for the SAP NHL Global Series. Colorado will play two games against the Ottawa Senators on Nov. 10-11.

Before traveling to Europe, the Avs played weekend contests on the east coast against the Philadelphia Flyers and New York Islanders. is writing about the trip.

12:48 p.m. CET: Colorado's charter flight lands in Sweden.

The team is greeted on the tarmac by Swedish customs agents, who check everyone's passports before giving a stamp of approval. Once everyone has gone through the immigration checkpoint, the players load up onto a team bus and head to their hotel.

2:10 p.m.: After an hour-long bus ride, the Avalanche arrives at the Grand Hotel in downtown Stockholm.

The players grab their luggage and keys that are waiting for them in the lobby before heading up to their rooms. They then have the next few hours to relax and check out the city before a scheduled team dinner.

5:50 p.m.: The Avalanche players, coaches and staff load up to the team bus and make the short trip to Gamla Stan (translates to old town) for dinner. It's only about a five-minute ride to that part of town.

Once there, the bus drops the team off on its outskirts as the roads in the medieval part of the city are two narrow for the bus to go through. From there, it is a short walk up the cobblestone streets to the restaurant where the team will eat.

The Avs have a special dining area in the basement of the restaurant, and the team has to go down a spiraling staircase to get there. The building was built in the 1700's, and many of its characteristics inside haven't changed much.

On the menu was a six-course meal, which featured soup, Swedish meatballs, sausage, fish, a variety of potatoes and small deserts.

Fully stuffed after their two-and-a half-hour dinner, the team heads back to their hotel to get some rest for the next day's practice. Most of the players get back on the bus, but several of them elect to walk to help digest the delicious meal they just ate.

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