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Stone Cold

by Staff Writer / Montréal Canadiens
CALGARY -- Playing outside isn’t for everyone, it seems.

After all the speculation on what the weather conditions would be when the puck drops at the 2011 Heritage Classic, the Canadiens found out for themselves at McMahon Stadium.

While Michael Cammalleri was impressed by the piping hot chicken noodle soup available on the bench at practice, his teammates were conjuring up new ways to stay toasty on Sunday.

“I’m still trying to figure out what I’m going to do to stay warm tomorrow,” shrugged Carey Price, who bravely wore nothing under his Heritage Classic special edition mask at and has confirmed he will not be wearing a tuque à la Jose Theodore. “Maybe I’ll just do jumping jacks when the puck is in their end.”

There was no shortage of ski masks and other cold weather equipment at the Canadiens’ disposal courtesy of equipment manager Pierre Gervais, but some Habs still said thanks, but no thanks.

“I don’t like wearing anything under my helmet. I just feel restricted that way,” explained Hal Gill. “Only now I just need to figure out how to stop my hair from freezing.”

When asked whether getting as much ice-time as possible was the key to staying warm on Sunday, captain Brian Gionta had another theory.

“Actually, the benches are heated so getting benched in this game wouldn’t feel quite so bad, maybe” laughed Gionta.

From the use of eye black to thermal underwear, the players are pulling out all the stops, except for one in particular. It ends up, the pride of Alaska prefers feeling his outdoor experiences in their purest form.

“It’s a pride thing for me,” revealed Scott Gomez. “I’ve said all along that I wouldn’t wear all the hoods and stuff that all the other guys are wearing and I didn’t. When I looked around at my teammates, especially the Canadian guys, they were the ones who were wrapped up the most out of all of us!

“A kid like Ryan White should be embarrassed about himself. He’s from Brandon [Manitoba] for heaven’s sake,” continued a ranting Gomez with a smile. “And Travis Moen with all of his Saskatchewan farmer stories; now I don’t even know what to believe anymore. I mean, Travis was wearing the most stuff of all. Heck I’m Latin, I’m a Mexican; the weather should be working against me but I held my own out there. I guess being from Alaska is paying off for me.”

Manny Almela is a writer for

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