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The Ice Is In!

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins

Early on Tuesday morning, the TD Banknorth Garden’s ice crew put the finishing touches on the Bruins rink. On Monday, before they finished, I was able to walk out on the newly painted white ice and see how the lines, circles and advertisements were painted in. Check out some photos from the ice installation.

"It’s called Jet-Ice Paint," said John "Zibby" Puleio, a thirty-year member of the bull gang. "It’s made for the ice and it freezes right away.

"You couldn’t use regular paint on the ice."

"It’s a water based paint," said JR Boyle, who supervised the installation. "That way the paint will freeze while you are making ice. It’s just like water -- colored water, basically."

The crew puts the ice in twice a year, and has to go through the same process each time.

"It takes three days," said JR, who indicated that this particular time would take a little less time because they have to get it done by 6:00 Tuesday -- in time for a Garden function.

"They do a real good job," said JR. "Of all the teams I’ve seen, and all the guys I’ve met, our guys are probably the best in the league as far as painting logos and putting them on the ice."

Using a chalk outlines or stencils on the ice and then coloring in the picture, the crew creates the logos and specialized markings -- making sure everything is right side up for the television cameras.

And although it looks like fun to this untrained eye, kind of like giant paint by numbers canvas, it can get pretty tedious.

"After about 10 hours of it you get a little tired of it," said John Collins. "It gets cold on the ice, and it starts to affect your legs. You just have to keep moving."

"You put down five coats of clear water," explained JR, of the pre-painting ice making process. "It’s a light mist. Then you mist over with white, three or four coats.

"Then you put another three coats of clear water on and then that’s what we are painting the lines on now, that final clear coat.

"And finally, you flood water on top of this so you end up with a couple of inches of ice."

The Garden’s ice crew is:
John Collins
Junior Rebelo
Paul Lawrence
John "Bucky" Buckley
Paul Chambers
Billy "BC" Cronin
John Pierce
Scott Moss
Zibby Puleio
John "Grizzy" Grzelcyk
And JR Boyle

Thanks for showing me how it’s done, guys. The ice looks great!

More from Coach Lewis
"We didn’t get it done. We done a few different things, and changed the lines a bit. I haven’t changed a lot of the focal points, but we have to find different ways to get it done…I was surprised with the end result [in St. Louis] and disappointed with the loss…I took a lesson from that and tried to explain that to the team. We had a two-nothing lead and at the start of the third period, we were more in a prevent defensive mode, rather than take-your chances and attack, because the other team will eventually attack you…and they’re going to take chances because their not down by one, but by two. So you have to counter their risk taking."
Head Coach, Dave Lewis, on the loss to St. Louis

"I was pretty upset after the Islander game. And then of course I watched it on Sunday, again. Then you get upset again…You see what happens, and you’re not happy with what happens, and you’ve got to figure out how to fix that. Whether that’s individually, collectively, positionally, whatever…you have to figure out the reason why it happened. And is it because of a player, is it because of two players, is it because of lack of information, or is it too much information. That’s where the challenging part of being a coach comes. That’s the fun part."
Lewis, on bouncing back from the loss to the Islanders

"I think every coach [is a coach] 24 hours a day. I think you just think about it. Yesterday I went for a walk and I went down in the North End and there is an ice rink there and I walked in to see if anybody was practicing and nobody was…Then I started watching some older guys play bocce ball. Now I’m evaluating them. I said, ’That guy is really good…he knows what he is doing.’"
Lewis, on being a coach -- all the time
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